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Diane, I've been working on that too for the past month. I think it's just a matter of playing a few songs each practice while paying close attention to being "light-fingered" (yeah, not suggesting you start shopping lifting Diane, lmao).
It amazes me just how light the touch can be and still produce a clear note. But I've found that if I apply as little pressure as possible while still producing a good sound, then gradually my touch on everything I play has lightened (yeah, not like in my hair color.....).
A lighter touch definitely allows you quicker dexterity too. Over the past couple of years my hands have become so delicate that just gripping unruly strands of my pasta gives me callouses!
I don't presume to know for sure, but since I've been working on this as well, I'll just chime in.
If you start with just barely touching the string and slowly increase pressure as you bow, when you first get a note it will sound slightly muffled. At some point as you increase pressure, you will hear the note start to go just a little sharp as your fingerpad flattens and is pretty much mashing the string.
I try for between those two, but closer to risking it sounding a little muffled or soft. If you keep it on the light side, is is easier to slide notes and etc, and your fingers don't get tired near as easy.
Most people use a lot more pressure than they need to on guitar as well, btw. I have to keep reminding myself to relax my hands when I play. As one of my few guitar teachers used to keep saying, "Tense fingers are slow fingers.."
"This young wine may have a lot of tannins now, but in 5 or 10 years it is going to be spectacular, despite the fact that right now it tastes like crude oil. You know this is how it is supposed to taste at this stage of development." ~ Itzhak Perlman
Great Topic. I used to have marks after practice..now I have just a nice firm skin on my fingertips but no callouses...I am actually proud of them. 🙂 I still think I could lighten up a bit... my teacher says it can be like tapping fingers on the table.... so I am going to try that...
Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato