Saturday, September 24, 2016

A clear future


Here's another practice figure for the painting with Reaper clear paints at Reapercon just a matter of weeks from now.


The concept here is to begin with a very muted value 'sketch', just to lay out where the general light and dark patterns should be. 


Using the clear blue, green and purple clear paints,  a series of glazes provides the actual colors that you see here.  The clear paints are very saturated,  so even when thinned with water, they maintain their structure and consistency. 


Once the generic color values have been achieved,  I can start mixing in lighter opaque colors with the clears and get more gradations. 


Friday, September 23, 2016

Blades of Glory


Here's another figure that I used in the dealers room demos at GenCon to illustrate the use of glazes to not just shade, but tint as well.

Now that I am painting so many vehicles, it is interesting to hear the terms modulation and filters being substituted for my more traditional artist names for those techniques.  It was a bit confusing at first... especially figuring out what was meant by a filter.


For me, tinting is a crucial stage, because that is what allows the Shaded Basecoat to be so effective.  The principal behind that is to get lights and darks positioned across the entire figure as rapidly as possible, just like my old 2D painting days!

Once that has been completed, the 'real' colors come out in the glazing stage, where I not only darken colors, but tint them to the hue that I need.  For instance, the coat on this figure was originally going to be blue or brown... but early on the need for something brighter and more eye catching became apparent.


I tried out a few glazes of reaper Clear Red, just to see how that might look.  Yes, this is the prime advantage of the Shaded Basecoat (which I say over and over again... sorry!).  I can completely change my color scheme in mid stream if the need arises, since I have only done a basic framework of lights and darks.


The final colors are confirmed as the glazing and tinting covers over the Shaded basecoat.  I use plenty of different glazes, washes, etc. , that all cover that early shading very effectively.  One of my classes at Reapercon will focus on this element of tinting, using those clear paints.


Thursday, September 22, 2016

The lady in Red


One more female character for you from Red Box Games.  She is yet another figure from the giant batch of winter theme characters which spans a number of miniatures companies.


Whenever possible, I tried to reflect a variety of sky blue colors to swords, armor and shields.  This blue was more saturated than what was used on the 'ground', or snow facings.


All this contrasted well with the deep reds of the tunic and shield.  Here and there the tiniest bit of rust was applied.


Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Mow 'em down!


With the oil based AMMO mud products dry and set, it was time to attach the foliage to the Machine Gun team and get them ready for action!


I really loved how the heavy mud and spatter products worked on the base itself, as well as the figures.  I am now trying this out on some regular standing infantry.


The muted warmth of the mud tones set off the foliage nicely, as did the texture.


These views from above give you a few nice peeks at the mud effects!


It looks like these lads will be out on the table this weekend for the first version two match, so stay tuned...


Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Land of the Pharaohs


All new from Green Stuff World... yet another fantastic texture roller!  You have seen a number of great textures already, such as the Celtic ruins, Runic Temple and many others.

Instead of putting links to those previous articles that explained some methods for using them, I did a fresh demonstration here.  I was out of the usual grey Extra Firm Sculpey, so I had to use the regular white Sculpey.

This breaks easier than the grey, and is not quite as easy to get an even roll, but it will do for the moment!


Like those previous demonstrations, I have a few materials and tools ready once the sheets have been baked.


To keep things simple, I will put a piece of cork under the thinner sheets.


The cork is broken into shape, and glued in place.


Selecting the piece of Sculpey is more involved, as you want to maximize the effect of the design.  It's also important to think about the footprint of the figure as well, and what that might or might not obscure.


The overhanging bits are cut away for the most part.  It is OK to leave some of that behind, since that overhang can be supported later by adding the glue, rocks, oxide paste, etc.

The second part of the image at the bottom shows that the edges have been chipped away with an exacto knife.  This wears it down and weathers it a little more.  You could also sculpt cracks and other effects with simple carving tools.

Again, I wanted to keep this as simple as possible for the moment!


I usually select a number of different base sizes and shapes, because the designs of these rollers have large and small sections to the patterns.  Square bases let me get more of that design on the base, but there are ways to get more from round bases too.

I have a 'triangle' shape, which only overhangs in a few areas.  Those "open" spots let me get the base into contact with another base, which most game systems seem to have as part of the rules.


When doing a larger or more unusual shaped base, it is nice to have a few levels.  Here the Sculpey sheet is placed directly onto the base as well as on a piece of cork.

This makes the base far more interesting, and prefect for those horses rearing up on their hind legs!


These first few bases were done with thin sheets of Sculpey on cork.  I also have a sheet of texture which is about twice as thick.  Let's see how this looks!


The thickness of this sheet means that I don't need to put the cork underneath.  I also end up with lots of nice broken and chipped pieces for the square style bases.

On the round base, I rested one larger chuck on its side for added interest.


At this stage, the bases are now ready to have some sand and gravel added.  I have also used a variety of the Vallejo oxide paste products for this.


I have my three different grades of sand and gravel, and the extra strong Elmer's glue.


First, all of the open areas are covered with a fair amount of glue, so that I can add the heaviest rocks in the second step.  I always begin with the largest gravel first, so that I can place them exactly where I want, and then 'build' around them, as I do in the third step.

You can see that with each lighter grade that I add, space is still being left for the progressively lighter grades, such as the sand, which was added in the fourth step.


This process is repeated on all of the bases.  Every so often, I put a thin layer of glue over the carved textures, so make them seem like they have some sand blown over the top of them.  As with everything else, it is up to you how much or how little you need.


All of the bases complete!  If you have any skulls, scarabs, broken swords or even snakes, they can be added for an extra touch of ancient desert flavor!  When I put the miniatures on these, I will probably do just that... so stay tuned.

Here's a link:



Monday, September 19, 2016

The Hunter


Next up in the Skink series!  Yes, there are a great many of these... because that's just how Skinks roll. :-)


Having the various Hangar 18 foliage tufts and other leafy bits was a definite advantage this time around, as they didn't exist back in the day when I first painted the Lizardmen.


I had to make do with static grass, and plastic aquarium plants.  You have already seen some of the plastic plants, which also got a bit of an update on an earlier post.  Discovering that simple glazes could make those instantly lose that shiny plastic appearance.

I could not resist 'updating' as many of my little guys as possible by adding more of these new foliage tufts and doing those glazes.  My Vallejo glazes worked very well for this, but I am also going to test the AMMO enamel products, which could yield some different effects.

While the acrylic Vallejo products had no trouble sticking to the plastic (my biggest concern), I am guessing that oil based paints will stick even better. Stay tuned!


Sunday, September 18, 2016

A strong platform


Next up for the Gates of Antares Isorian army is the Nhamak Light Support Drone platform.  As I have mentioned in the previous Antares posts, this return to sci-fi has also meant a return to some brighter, more saturated color schemes.


This particular return to sci-fi also involves a more 'natural' or organic set of shapes, so there's even more color selection freedom!  This carapice was a great opportunity to try out some different color combos.


As I work through this force, I'm even more glad that I went with the deck plating style of basing.  The neutral gray tones are a perfect method to offset these brighter more saturated colors.  The occasional accents of safety stripes and other markings brings a bit of that warm color down onto the base too.


This view from above gives you a sense of that color contrast.


And now for a few shots of just the platform.  The next set will likely be the command staff, so stay tuned!!