Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Steps of the Knight

And here's the knight that I've been painting for my Pathfinder friend. Once again, with only the simple base coats applied thus far.

Almost all base colors have been added here.

Finished the base coat by this point, next I'll start doing washes and some highlighting.

Here's the last of the work I've done on the knight. Here I added a black wash to most of his armor and did some highlights on the leather and steel.

3 Projects Begun

So I recently started 3 projects at once (not intentional) so it may be awhile until I can dedicate a blog to each's finish. What I can post now is the beginning photos of each.

Here's a Knight I'm painting for a friend.

A Dwarf I'm working on for my Pathfinder campaign. my last character, the wizard Kain, died :(

And a Dark Eldar Raider for my Dark Eldar army in Warhammer 40k.

Sunday, August 21, 2011


I've been painting a mini for a friend in my Pathfinder campaign again and thought I'd share the finished results. The character's name is Batubo, a wizard/fighter who came from a plain of air, hence the light color choice.

After receiving him, I clipped some of the mini’s rough edges and filed his edges a bit, then began to paint him. Seeing how most of his body was covered in armor that I was going to paint silver anyways, I skipped spraying him with a base color—not sure I made the right decision doing that though, since I had to give him two coats of paint each time I changed colors.

Here’s Batubo after the first round of base painting.

And here he is after coating him a second time.

After I finished giving him flat color, I did some washing and drybrushing. This was my first time using actual bought wash (got 15 bucks worth of washes from GamesWorkshop) and I planed to test its results on this mini. Thankfully, it turned out well and I learned a lot from using it on his cloak. I used a blue wash that I should have diluted slightly, but after going over it with a drybrush pass, didn't look too bad.


Monday, August 15, 2011

Project 3--Wizard

This last miniature went pretty fast. Painting time, I probably only spent 4 hours on him. I did get a new camera last week and a youtube account so messing with that along with digging out my old video cam and editing clips for that drybrushing video that I last posted which has held this post up longer than it should have. But I'm back to painting now, just finishing this wizard today.

I arbitrarily gave him a base coat of grey (what was I thinking? I don't know) which was pointless since I ended up not leaving any grey visible on his clothes or equipment. I could have just painted him without a base coat and he would have turned out just the same.

The color I chose for his cloak was a deep purple. I messed around with his scroll and, later, decided to paint it a different color (looked too fleshy).

Step 2 photos show the model after I had applied some drybrushing to his cloak. I coated his staff black, and detailed the crystal on top. Also I painted in all the leather but hadn't yet drybrushed it.

I finished him off in step 3 by drybrushing his black staff with a dark grey, painted the gold on his staff and silver on his buttons and buckle, and redid his scroll.

His base is kind of crazy. I wanted it to look like he was in some crystalline mage's building so I gave the base a coat of black to begin with, then drybrushed the heck out of it with differing shades of purple. Didn't know if it was going to work how I wanted it to but it turned out quite nice.

His skin was the most difficult part. I played around with it a lot but I ended up just using the paint "Fleshtone" and then using a wash of brown. I'll get to washes in more detail in a later post but basically what a simple wash is, is really watered down paint mixed with some chemicals. I just used water on this one.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

I recently did a little dry brushing on the wizard mini I've been painting so I decided to record the process. This video is my first so it's a bit longer than I think it actually needs to be, but as I do more, I'll shorten them up accordingly.

So in the video I talk about dry brushing for cloth, but I've found each material requires a different technique of dry brushing. I'll show different methods of dry brushing down the line.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Make Your Own Photo Light Box

I noticed with my first three miniature models, that I painted for this blog, that photo clarity is quite important. What's the point in showcasing your work if the light and photo conditions won't do your work justice? I decided to make a light box after that first post and turns out, they are really easy and cheap to construct.

But what is a light box and why use one? They have many titles, lightbox, soft box, photo tents, but they all do the same basic thing. A light box softens the light on the object that you're trying to illuminate for a photo, making the photo illuminated but not overly so. and as for the why one should use a light box, well, check out the comparison photos using the same camera.

Photo on left: no lightbox used / Photo on right: lightbox used

First I needed to construct the box. All I did was cut holes in a cardboard box, that was lying around the house, in the two sides and in the roof.

Then I cut a white tee-shirt up, stretched it across the holes to act as light filters/softeners, and stapled the cloth squares to the box.

Next I cut up some poster board that was left over from a school project and taped it along the floor and back wall of the box.

Here's the only part that cost me anything. I already had one table lamp, but I needed two more for the sides. I found some at Wal-Mart for 5 bucks each and bam, I had me a pretty decent photo light box.

**One side note is that I had to cover the inside of the cardboard box with white poster board as well because my first photos were yellowish due to the light reflecting off of the cardboard instead of a white surface. The pictures are quite self explanatory even if my steps are not but feel free to ask any questions in the comment section.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Project 2--For A Friend

My second project so far is a gnoll model. My GM for the Pathfinder campaign I'm playing in right now had this sweet un-painted gnoll that needed some color so I volunteered to paint it for him since we were using it a lot in various battle scenes. The piece came unpainted (is made of pewter not plastic), his joints were glued together already, and the arrow he held with his right hand was broken off and missing.

STEP 1 (Basecoat)

The first step was to break his limbs off so that painting in his joints didn't become overly tedious. After that was done, I remade an arrow for his right hand by clipping a brass wire I had left over from my chainmail supplies, and molding an arrow head from clay. (in the future, I need to buy some greenstuff for that kind of thing, but for now, all I have available is oven-bake clay)

I didn't have a craft/hobby hand drill set so I just superglue the copper wire directly onto the fletching in his right hand. This broke multiple times during the painting process and will, no doubt, break off for my friend Justin as soon as the model falls forward. This frustration caused me to buy a hobby drill, which I might make a short post about later, but it came after I was done with the model so. sadly, the arrow must make due with just superglue.

I sprayed him with a basecoat of flat black, then started painting him.

STEP 2 (Painting)

After filling in the base colors for the model (e.g. brown for the fur and wood, silver for the armor, maroon for the cloth), I began the highlights. Highlighting is a general term since each material, be it cloth, wood, leather, or metal, all are highlighted in different ways.

For the fur, I decided I wanted to make his fur look sun bleached since this was going to be a desert gnoll. To do that I made a light tan paint mixture and drybrushed his pelt, giving him the highlighted fur effect.

(note: I use the term "drybrush" a lot in this post. I'll do a post or video down the road about drybrushing in more detail.)

For the armor, I wanted his gear to look used and unkempt, so I decided a light rust would work well for all iron on him. I dryburshed his armor a rust color to create that effect.

For the wood, I wanted his weapons to look as though they've never been cleaned, to look almost greasy, so I gave his bow and weapon shafts on his belt a dark grey drybrushing, creating the well-handled look; although, for the arrow wood, I used tan highlights, giving the shafts a newer look, since I figured that the gnoll probably scavenged the arrows from someone else since arrows are semi-disposable tools.

The cloth was different, and I think I nailed it. After the previous model of the female ranger that I did, I realized that, although cloth does have highlights to it, they are subdued, unlike with leather, armor, or rubber. So I used the same maroon color as the base color for his cloth, but added a little white to lighten it up marginally. They were essentially the same color, just one was a bit lighter. After drybrushing his hood, I saw that it worked quite well and did the rest of his cloth the same way.

STEP 3 (Base Plate)

Once the painting on the model was done, I worked on the model's base plate. I got some fine sand and Elmers glue, glued the base where I wanted mounds of sand to be, glued the sand and a small chert flake onto the plate and painted it a light sandy color. I also drybrushed the sand and base plate sides to give it some depth.

STEP 4 (Transportation)

I was afraid that the arrow I had made, that was so precariously glued to the model, would come off during transportation. But I found that those cases dice sets come in, are great single model transports if you add a little cleaning cloth in there for shock absorption. Don't use tissue though. That covers the miniature in some type of aloe they put in the soft tissues, or flake/dust from the dry kind.