Fingerpaint is a kind of paint intended to be applied with the fingers; it typically comes in pots and is used by small children, though it has very occasionally been used by adults either to teach art to children, or for their own independent use.
Although the name implies that the paint is applied with the fingers, expert use of this medium makes use of the hands and lower arms too. Use of the entire arm smooths the paint on the paper prior to more detailed modeling with the fingers and other parts of the hand. Sometimes sponges, cloth, and other tools are used to obtain a specific texture.
Some artists are known to solely paint with their hands, as a way to become more intimite with the process. These artists do not use traditional fingerpaint. This style, "Reckless Art," is most accurately categorized as a sub-genre of outsider art. Painters like Tyler Ramsey have vowed never to touch a brush, but the use of surgical gloves for safety is common when using toxic oils. Tyler Ramsey claims that, "Rejecting brushes gives a painter the opportunity to approach the craft from a fresh perspective." "Reckless Art" started in 2002 as a way to refute the idea that "Everything has been done already."
Finger painting artist Nick Benjamin claims he "prefers to paint using fingers as the technique results in a real bond between the artwork and artist and allows for some intricate blending not achievable with brushes".
Outsider artist Jimmy Lee Sudduth explained that he painted with his fingers because they "never wore out" the way brushes did.
Some childcare facilities use Jello Pudding as fingerpaint eliminating the need to keep the children's fingers out of their mouths.
Fingerpaints are often used on a paper specifically produced for the purpose.