Friday, February 24, 2017

Oil Slick


While you have seen me using the oil paints on vehicles, and a few larger figures as well, this is the first time I have tried to use them entirely on 'regular' infantry sized figures.

The whole idea behind the oils is to be able to paint much larger batches at once, as in 50-100, where I can rotate through the hordes and still be able to work the wet paint.

These will all begin with glazes using the Mig AMMO oils, which set up the subsequent painting with the Windsor Newton oil paints.  In effect, this mimics what I used to do when painting in 2D... taking some thinned down burnt sienna and 'priming' the canvas with it.


I put out a few basic wash colors, some which were more reddish and others more tan.


I did various glazes over the primer, which had been given some pre-shading, as you could see in the earlier image.  The Dark Wash is a very deep blueish brown, so that makes a nice dark glaze for the deepest shadows.


Just as I would on a vehicle, I can use the makeup sponges to remove some of the washes, revealing the lighter shading underneath.  Since the drying time is measured in days rather than minutes, I will be able to work my way through large batches of figures without having to worry about the paint being unworkable. 


Here's the final view of the glazed figures, all set for adding the actual oil paints!


Using the original glazes as a starting point, the thicker oil paints are placed on top, and then mixed together.  The thin layer of glazing helps to move the much thicker oil paints around.

I can also use the glaze colors on the palette to thin the oil paint if I need to.


The ability to continuously blend the oil paints together means that I can introduce something like light green, or a color that is quite different than the one already on the surface, and blend that together quite easily.

While I can do all this with the acrylic paints, it is not feasible to do so with the amount of figures that I will be working on.  Again, the idea is to expand the number that I can work on in one sitting.


I can continue to add more light colors, blending the new additions into what's already there.  If I don't like it, I can easily wipe it all away, which is yet another huge advantage!


Color unity is very easy to maintain when working like this.  All of the colors come from the same root beginning, which means that even figures that have different color coats or uniforms will still seem as if they all are in the same "environment".

It is also possible to go back in with darker colors, but they will have to be thinned down.  Remember that thick paint will stick to thinner paint (and vice/versa), but thick on thick will not work.  One paint must be a different consistency than the other, which is going to be very different for someone who has never worked in oils before.

I spent many years painting oils in 2D, so that is a lesson I learned decades ago. :-)


To work in the grays and greenish tones, I put some blue and yellow ocher out on the palette, and started to blend those into the existing shades.


The backpacks and straps were more of a yellowish tan, so you can see in the bottom image the various shades that I was able to get with just a few simple colors on the palette.  Mixing your own colors is what oils are all about!


Here's the batch of figures with some additional darks applied to the bases... and even a German MMG team that I tossed some paint on while I had it on the palette. Again, I was able to take advantage of the extended drying time.  Everything was still nice and wet the next day!


I wasn't actually in my home studio doing this, so the pictures were a little farther away than usual.  Also, this was just an experiment, to see what might happen!  I'm sure that I will rapidly develop new ways of doing this, which I will try to show you in subsequent posts and in facebook live sessions.

These are not actually finished yet, with mostly details on the faces to be painted, and the snow effects added too.... stay tuned!!


Thursday, February 23, 2017

The Dwarf Cleric


I have painted this guy a few times over the years, and he's always been fun to paint each time.  The biggest difference in each is probably the base.  Originally I was going to use this as a Blood Bowl coach/turn marker.


There's a lot of movement in this figure, which is not always easy to obtain for a dwarf of any kind (even if they are natural sprinters).


The biggest difference these days is having the Green Stuff World moulds in the armory of tools.  In no time at all, I was able to create a perfect setting for this figure!


He's also here:



Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Old Timer


Sometimes the oldest of figures can be the most interesting to work with.  When we first started painting minis, there was not a huge selection of figures for us to work with.  We didn't really know anything about the various companies.  

Years and years ago, we ran across some old Ral Partha figures in a bin at a convention, with the thought of using them for Blood Bowl teams, etc.


This figure must be well over 20 years old, possibly 25 at this point.  But, some modern treatment and basing can make it seem as if it still belongs in today's environment.


He's also here:



Monday, February 20, 2017

A sweet little Kitty


Next up from Trenchworx is the M18 Hellcat.  This will also get the winter treatment like the Sherman.  Here's the opening of the box... goodies!


This instruction sheet is really handy.  Each company has a different way of casting things like treads, so it is very good to have a picture of that piece so one doesn't mistake a tab for a gate or vent!


Just like the Sherman, the pieces fit together so well out of the box, it stands on its own, without even a touch of blu-tak.


Once again, a fantastic rare earth magnet set up for the turret.  Better yet, I have noticed that the magnets even change size with the turret.  This is bigger and heavier than the Sherman turret, and  it comes with a bigger magnet


These views were shot right after the assembly.  Since then, I have sculpted a bunch of stowage to give it a lived in look.


The casting is so fine on these vehicles, you have minimal amounts of cleaning, filing and so on.  I didn't have to break out the jeweler's block and the razor saw to hack away  massive gates and vents.  Always a plus.

The tracks and drive wheels are especially clean and straight.  This is the single most variable part in all vehicle castings.  They can be a nightmare to deal with, and it's great to be able to blitz right through the process and have a tank with tread assemblies that are not tilted or distorted!

It's the little things that bring me joy. 


Sunday, February 19, 2017

Champion of the East


A few of my old Easterling cavalry needed to be converted to create a command set, such as the musician, standard bearer and this champion.  These are the original metal versions of the Kataphracts.


I believe that his sword was from the fantasy Chaos warrior box.  It certainly made him easy to spot, which is very important for knowing the command radius, and if he is the right guy to get into a certain combat.


This Captain was always very helpful in providing a spare might, fate or will point in a key zone!


Saturday, February 18, 2017

If I had a Hammer


This big guy is yet another of the game pieces which might be from the Blood Rage game.  He was painted in a similar skin color scheme as the other troll.


There were a lot of broad, open areas to negotiate on this version, and some crazy mould lines.


Soon you will see images of these guys with all their little goblin buddies!  Stay tuned!


Friday, February 17, 2017

Down in the Trenches


As the winter American army draws closer, it's time to get some vehicles ready for them as well!  

Just in time for the relief of Bastonge is the trusty Sherman... I look forward to "winterizing" this. :-)

I had never gotten Trenchworx vehicles before, but I knew that I was in for a real treat.  Sure enough, all kinds of amazing things were waiting inside the box...


Instructions!  Yes, not something you see very often with resin and metal kits.  Very handy though :-)  Even at the rough stage of yanking them out of the bubble wrap, the parts all looked and felt fantastic.

The resin had a wonderful smooth, uniform finish, as opposed to the alternating glossy/rough like you all too often run across.


The pieces already went together, with no slicing, filing or other machinations!


And yes, each turret comes with a rare earth magnet set!  The holes are already set for you... all you have to do is glue them in.  That saves a whole lot of time, pain and potential suffering!  Love it!


The assembled vehicle.  I have since added some stowage, so that it has more places for the snow to accumulate.  The drive wheels and treads were super clean and distortion free, which is yet another amazing attribute.  Normally the treads get a bit whacky and out of shape.

Not here!


I look forward to working on many more Trenchworx vehicles, since the kits are soooooo easy to deal with.  Every detail is sharp and crisp, down to the smallest tool, hatch or vent.  Painting these will be a joy, because they will practically paint themselves.


I have a link to the site here.  They are continuously adding new kits, so I keep coming back to see what wonderful new tank will be coming out: