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Everything posted by Guindyloo

  1. Hi friends! We have another project to share with you in our continuing series where Buglips and I paint the same figure using our own very different from each other approaches to miniature painting. If you're not familiar with this series, you can check out our previous topics: 03100: Thanis the Bonecaller 01614: Con Crud 2017 Convention Zombie 02818: Bugbear Warrior For this project, we decided to paint Scorpius Rex Dracus, which is an older figure in the back catalog of Reaper - just look at the number! 02017! He's one of the OG's of the Reaper catalog! Our usual method for picking a figure is generally that one of us already owns it and suggests it and then the other of us goes and orders it. However, for Scorpius Rex Dracus, we actually both already owned him because he's a really neat figure with a lot of personality. I know a lot of people are a bit intimidated by the thought of painting dragons, but I promise they're a lot of fun and this guy would actually be a great starter dragon, as he's on the smaller side. I didn't have a Sir Forscale, but here he is next to Queen Illeosa of Korvosa to give you an idea of his size. So you can see, he's a far less intimidating size than the dragons you see in Bones. (Spoiler alert, I'm going to assemble him a little later. ) But for now, here he is straight out of the blister: As we've done with our previous WIP posts, I will be tackling this guy with my method of painting for display and I'll do my best to take y'all through all of the steps that I go through from start to finish and share my thoughts with you as I go along. As always, please feel free to comment or ask questions - I'm always glad to help out in whatever way I can along the way. I'll try not to take too many blurry pictures....but no promises.
  2. Really sorry the updates on this one have been so sporadic. It's been an atypical week. I've only really been able to work on him for 5 of the 9 days since starting the thread. Buglips has also had an atypical week, causing his own delays. Y'all know how real life gets in the way of these things sometimes. So I decided to go ahead and tackle the fins that he has and also the hair. I'd been thinking for a while about what I was going to do with them and at first I thought that I might paint them all the same colour as his belly scales and wing membranes but I decided that I wanted to bring a little bit more colour to him. So I started out by basecoating with MSP New Copper which is not a metallic colour in case you didn't know. It's more of a peachy salmony matte colour. Now I actually really like this colour combination but obviously it's kind of jarring so my original intention was to take MSP Clear Blue, which was what I used to do the shading on the body, and shade the New Copper with that as well. Now I've had good success in the past with basecoating with a light colour and then taking a very different and much darker colour and creating a transition between the two colours either by slowly glazing or using a 2 brush blending method. Unfortunately, those methods are quite tricking to pull off in very small and varying textured areas. They work much better for larger, flatter areas, or at least they do for me at my level of experience with such methods. It wasn't too bad on the fins, but it was not working whatsoever on the hair and ultimately I decided that I didn't like how it was looking. Now I have to apologize because I thought that I had taken a picture of that stage, but unfortunately I had not. *insert sad trombone.wav here* I apparently didn't think to take a picture until I'd done a heavy glaze of MSP Clear Blue over everything I'd previously painted. However, since I did like the look of the New Copper and thought it was really just the technique I'd failed at, I figured I'd go about it via a more traditional route of layering. So I started out by mixing a very small amount of the New Copper into the Clear Blue. Y'all know how this goes, I left the pure colours up top there. Seriously though, a very small amount. The thing about Reaper's Clear colours is that there's no white added to them to make them opaque so when you introduce any other paint to them that does have white in it, it's going to lighten it very quickly. I thought this made a really pretty very dark cornflower blue sort of colour. So I took that and rebasecoated. A situation like this is a really strong argument for working with thinned paints. Had I gone in and basecoated with New Copper straight from the bottle without thinning it a bit and doing 2 thin coats, I could already be running into issues with having to re-basecoat it in a different colour. So it's always something to keep in mind. Next I added just a wee bit more New Copper to the previous mix. And I'm going to very slowly work my colour up in smooth layers. A little bit more New Copper added to the mix. And a little bit more... Remember when you're layering that you just want to very gradually decrease the surface area of the next lightest colour. So a little bit more New Copper added to the previous mix and now we've reached a more traditional cornflower blue colour which I think is really quite lovely. And a little bit more New Copper to the previous mix and you can see the pink pigment's starting to dominate the blue now but it's still harmonious because I've mixed it so gradually. Then a little bit more New Copper to the previous mix and you know I really love mixing paint in a gradient like this. It's not the right choice for everyone. I am genuinely "wasting" a bit of paint like this... but honestly, it's so pretty and soothing that I don't really care. Have you seen those paint mixing videos from instagram? If you haven't, artists take paints (usually heavy body artist acrylics) and just record videos of them mixing the paint on their palette. They do really widely varied colours and there's at least one artist who actually puts paint into silicone molds and freezes them to present these really interesting objects and then she chops them up and mixes them. When I first heard about this, mind you, I was told that it was really soothing to watch and I scoffed at that because it sounded like a huge waste of paint to me, especially with freezing it, which destroys acrylic paint so you can't even use it afterwards. Then I actually watched some of the videos and you know what, it was totally soothing. But actually seeing it in action changed my mind about it being a waste of paint. If the paint is serving a purpose, and in those videos, it's serving a purpose of creating visual art so even if it can't be applied to something later, it served its purpose so it wasn't wasted. Creating these gradients on my palette makes me happy so it's serving a purpose even if all of the paint isn't going to be used on the figure. Maybe I'm just justifying a questionable habit but hey, that's life, isn't it? Anyway, with that bit of rambling out of the way, here's the actual picture. So lovely. Lastly, I took just a touch of straight New Copper for the final highlight. I definitely think that this was a much smoother and less jarring approach for the fins and hair. And you know what I realized while I was typing up this post? I forgot about the fin on his tail. *double sad trombone.wav* But, hey, at least this will create a good opportunity in my next post for me to discuss how I go about re-mixing up paint colours when I realize later that I needed more but either the paint has mixed on the palette (the wet palette will release enough moisture into a gradient like this to completely mix all of the paint together) or I've changed out my palette paper. I know that mixing paint on the fly like I do is kind of scary territory for some people for exactly this kind of situation so it's not such a bad thing that I'll get to demonstrate how I tackle it.
  3. Sorry about the sporadic updates. It's been kind of an off week. So even though I got home from work almost 2 hours later than usual I was determined to sit down and get some decent progress made. First of all, one of the big issues that I knew I was going to have due to assembling fully prior to painting, was the belly scales. There's a lot of little nooks and crannies and with the base in the way, it's really complicated to get a brush in there. But as you can see, I managed it. Because the area underneath is fully in shadow, I used Brown Liner for that area. I also used that to line the underside edges of all of the belly scales. I did not actually use witch craft to get into those areas, though I did consider it. I realized halfway through that I had just the right tool for the job. It happens to be something that I don't actually remember buying, which is why I only remembered it halfway through. Your eyes do not deceive you and no, I didn't break a paint brush and glue it back at an angle, it came like that. This is the Loew-Cornell 7670 "Tight Spot" brush and it is indeed as awkward to use as it looks like it would be, but it's also really useful for getting into, well, tight spots. So with that done, I decided to move on to highlighting the insides of the wings and the belly scales. So I started out by mixing Secret Weapon Old Mud (top left) and Secret Weapon Handle Wood (top right.) Rather than drybrushing, I decided to use the method "sidebrushing" where you load your brush as usual, though you don't want to overload it so you might want to touch it to a paper towel to take off the excess paint, and then drag the side of it along the raised edges of something with a lot of texture. I use it for painting hair especially and it's the same method you'd use for any kind of edge highlighting. The key is that instead of going up and down with the brush over the horizontal texture like you would with drybrushing, you want to gently slide your brush back and forth horizontally with the same direction as the texture. This will stop your brush from going down into the recesses of the texture and will generally give a little bit of a cleaner look than drybrushing as well as being far more controlled than drybrushing is. However, as you can see, that colour was too light to really show up very much. No worries, I just went back over it with straight Secret Weapon Handle Wood. That showed up much better. I also wanted to show you what I was doing with the belly scales. Since I'm going for a very textured look on the overall scales, I also wanted to bring some texture to the belly scales. So I did so by making very thin little vertical lines rather than typical layering. You can also see the oopsie little line of Brown Liner really clearly there on his knee that I'll need to fix later. Next I wanted to bump up the highlight a bit more so I took MSP Golden Skin and sidebrushed over the wing membranes and did some more of the same little lines over the belly scales, I just started my lines about halfway down the scales for this round of highlights. I wanted to go just a little bit brighter, so I also took MSP Golden Highlight to do one more round of highlights. I tried to tighten this up a little bit on the wing membranes and started the lines on the belly scales really just at the tips. Now, honestly, I didn't really like how the wing membranes looked at that point. They were just too uniform so I decided they needed some shading. I approached this by putting the figure on the back of my desk, about an arm's length away from me. You might recall that I did the same thing with Thanis to get a proper perspective on how shadows were realistically falling on her. I think it's really important to get different perspectives and angles while you're painting because we tend to hold the figures really close to our faces and just see one view of what we're doing and that can give you kind of a very zero-ed in view of it that can cause you to miss things that are going on from a different view. So I try to remind myself to occasionally sit back and look at my figures a little bit differently. Most often I hold them off to my side so that they're out of the bright spotlight of my lamp so I'm getting more of a realistic view of them. This is especially helpful to do if you struggle with contrast. Everything looks very bright under our lamps, so remember to get a glimpse under regular lighting and I think that'll help to remind you to take your highlights a little bit higher. See where those natural shadows are falling? The expected ones are directly under the highest raised areas, but there are some that aren't necessarily where you might've initially thought to place them. So with that in mind, I took Secret Weapon Rust Shadow, which has really become a new favourite paint of mine. It's a really dark olive sort of green and it's a pretty translucent paint, but it's got a great colour payoff. I've been experimenting with it a lot lately. I am yet to use it for rust. But as an aside (I know, everything I write is an aside,) I think it's really important to not get bogged down by the names of paints. Typically if something's named a specific thing, then it's probably going to be really great for that specific use but no paint is a one trick pony. You just have to look past the name and pay more attention to the colour itself and the different properties of the paint. Where was I? Right, so I took Secret Weapon Rust Shadow and although it does have a lot of translucency to it, I thinned it to a glaze or wash consistency to make sure that it wasn't too strong. Usually when you glaze you want to be really careful about dabbing most of the moisture off of your brush, but in this case I didn't do that because I was ok with it running into those deep recesses a bit. But unlike a wash, I very purposefully placed the colour, I didn't just sweep it over the entire wing membrane. So now that's given a lot more variation to the wing membrane. And here's the other wing which I, of course, used the same method to do. I also used the Brown Liner that was leftover on my palette on the base, but I didn't take a picture of that.
  4. CMON Rising Sun

    I guess this is a bad time for me to mention that mine arrived at my shipping address on Friday, was actually in my hands on Monday and I have still not even opened the box...
  5. Sorry, I’m afraid you’ll have to continue cringing, I’m totally using a kolinsky sable brush. I tried a couple of different brushes and I didn’t like the results I got from trying to use something synthetic or splayed. It didn’t look right to me and I knew that it would be even less controlled than I wanted as I tightened things up for the highlighting. Keep in mind, however, that I am not in any way mashing the brush or putting it through any unneeded abuse. I’m very lightly tapping and that’s why it’s slow and tedious. I know, y’all are thinking “Why would you use a good brush and take 5 times as long to do something when you could just...” I get that, I respect it and I think it’s perfectly valid. This relates right back to what Buglips and I have said many times about there being no “right” way to go about things. In the same vein, someone could ask “Why not just drybrush on the highlights?” Or “Why not use a wash to shade it?” There’s nothing wrong with doing any of those things. They’re faster, they’re easier and they give you a decent result. But that’s one way of doing it and it’s not the way that gives me the result I’m looking for. It might seem insane, but if I have to sacrifice a few extra hours and a nice brush just to get the result I want, then that’s what I’m going to do. If you can get the result you want 5 times as fast with a junky brush that you dedicate to stippling, that’s awesome and I’m jealous. Hell, I’m jealous every time Buglips finishes one of these and I know I’ve still got several days worth of work to go. But that’s the difference in our methods and that’s ok. I’ve already cut my painting time down from about a month for one figure to about a week. Speed can come with different methods or with practice. In my opinion, easier, faster methods are wonderful for the shortterm. They’re going to get your figures on the table faster and they’re going to get a lot of figures painted for you. But in the long term, going through the motions of the harder, slower methods is going to serve your skill set better overall. (I should probably point out at this point, in case it wasn’t already clear, that I’m speaking to the generic “you” here.) I want to articulate this properly because I don’t want this to come off as “I spend more time so that automatically makes my painting better” because that’s not what I mean at all and that’s not true. I know that there are people who look down on techniques like drybrushing and I want it to be really clear that’s not what I’m about. What I mean is that if you avoid doing more refined methods and instead do less refined methods all the time, then you’re cheating yourself out of valuable methodical practice. Your speed at the slower method will never improve and maybe that’s a minor point to you. That’s fair enough. However, you’re also not getting that practice of placing a single dot exactly where you want it. Muscle memory is so important to painting well but I think it’s something that people take for granted. For example, people have asked me many times how I got so good at painting eyes and it’s 100% due to practice, but not just the practice that I’ve put into eyes themselves, it’s the overall practice of putting in the time to hone my brush control and build good muscle memory. Those skill sets are more important to me than finishing something quickly. But again, that’s just what works for me. If something different works for you, do that. For some people, putting a bazillion individual dots on something would kill their motivation and I’m not going to lie, it killed mine too. I’ve put about 2 hours worth of work into this guy in the past 2 nights, not because I didn’t have the time, but because painting all of those little dots was a tedious motivation killer. And that would be enough for most people to choose a different method and for them that would be the right answer. Certainly maintaining motivation is a good enough reason to not use a tedious method that has little to no benefit to the end result over a much faster method. But, hi, my name is Guindyloo and I am stubborn as all hell and sometimes I do terrible things to myself because it’s the right way to go about it for me. Ok, that’s enough rambling. I just realized that from the direction of the questions today that I should have explained my madness better than “I’m doing it this way because I obviously hate myself.”
  6. Enigma Oz-Zuh, Moon Face Inspired DIMS Variation

    Awesome work! It’s really great to see your process for making your wonderful characters! I have to admit, when the first pictures loaded up, I hadn’t read your initial explanation of what you were sculpting, so my initial thought was “Why is malefactus making a duck klansman? “ I was relieved to see that it was just the initial sculpt and he no longer looked anything like that once you’d added more detail.
  7. Hasslefree Argia Tholos

    I’m so glad my eye tutorial was helpful! You did an awesome job! First of all, yay for trying new things! I didn’t know what I was doing with the crystal on Thanis’ staff either. Try this tutorial for painting crystals - https://community.fantasyflightgames.com/topic/250363-tutorialsimple-crystal-effect/# It might be hard to apply to such a small crystal, but I think it’s a good overview of the principles behind painting a crystal. For the spell effect OSL you have going on, first of all I think that whatever paint you used for the glowing light wasn’t the right one. You want something more translucent, especially at the furthest points where it fades out. Thinning it more into an even lighter glaze would have helped that, but also, that paint has a lot of white in it to make it more opaque, which is why it looks a little chalky. I could be wrong, but it looks like you might’ve used MSP Dungeon Slime? Translucency is really key when you’re doing a light effect because light itself is never going to be opaque unless you’re looking directly at the light source, right? The sun may be a solid colour, but sun beams are only going to tint the colour of the object they fall on. Think about looking at a sidewalk on a sunny day. The concrete is still going to look like concrete whether you’re looking at a shady part or where the sunlight is falling on it, the only difference is whether it’s tinted by the light or the shade. Incidentally, that’s also a good concept to keep in mind for NMM as well because it’s the opacity of the reflection that sells the reflective surface. You also want to make sure that whatever the source of the glow is meant to be, that should be the brightest part. So rather than the solid green, you’d want to have a core of white on the runes themselves. I also think that you should probably have a translucent glaze of green in the recesses of the runes instead of so much dark showing. I’m kind of thrown off because normally you’d see runes etched into things and so the glowing part would be in the recesses. I don’t know if you painted it opposite because that’s how the roller is meant to be or what. General critique would just just be to keep working on getting smooth blends. Your highest highlight jumps a little too quickly right now. If you add a half step between that and the previous colour, it’ll add an extra step but it’ll give you a smoother transition. Lastly, keep your overall light source in mind. When there’s a lot of folds in fabric it can be kind of difficult to know where to accurately place shadows and highlights, but try to keep the light source consistent. It’s very natural to look at a miniature and use your eyes as the light source, so we have a tendency to put our highest highlight on whatever part pokes out the most because to our eye, that’s the highest point so it should be highlighted. The problem is, while the figure’s static, your eyes move. You’re not typically holding it straight up when you’re painting it, you’re tilting it back and creating an upper surface that wouldn’t exist if she were standing upright in person. So don’t let your eyes be the light source. Pick somewhere that the light is coming from and be consistent with it. It’s easiest to go with a light source from directly above to mimic sunlight. If I’m having a hard time deciding if something should be highlighted or not, I look directly down at the figure and if I can see that part, then it gets that highest highlight. If I can’t see that part, it either needs to be my mid tone colour, or my shade colour if it’s recessed. Overall I think you did justice to this lovely sculpt. You did an awesome job with her eyes and the rocks you made turned out great. You really gave her a great look that really makes you wonder what her story is. To me, that’s a really important thing to be able to convey. Well done!
  8. 01567, Mary the Chibi Mermaid

    She’s gorgeous! You were right, I love everything about the base! I may have made an embarrassing squeak when I saw the oyster. Her crown is the absolute standout for me. Between the NMM gold and the gem, it’s absolutely beautiful. Really, really wonderful work!
  9. Oh gosh, I don’t know....it’s hard to say...if I had to guess, if I take out all the times that I stopped to mess with my phone or take a break or look up at my screen, etc. Probably somewhere between 30 and 45 minutes. And thank you!
  10. Alright, so continuing on with highlighting the skin, doing the same method of jabbing it with my paint brush to create a bazillion little dots... I mixed up my next highlight layer by adding a little bit more MSP Ghostly Moss to the Scale75 Joryldin Turquoise. Straight Turquoise is top left, straight Ghostly Moss is top right, previous mix is the blob in the position of a nose and then the mouth of the paint face I inadvertently created is the new highlight mix. So same method. A bazillion little dots later... Two things to note here - First of all, even though I am not highlighting via layering, I'm still applying the same principles as layering where you want to make your lighter highlight colours in progressively smaller areas the higher up you go. Secondly, I'm making a bazillion dots individually with my brush. You could save time and bother by using a brush that splays out a bit to make multiple dots at once. I'm not doing that because I wanted to have more control and less accidental blotches. And also because I obviously hate myself. I do let the wings become blotchy, however, because it's such a wide open space that I felt like blotchiness looked better than dottiness. Next I did another highlight layer of a bazillion more little dots with straight Ghostly Moss. I do want to do at least one more highlight on the skin, possibly even 2 more, but I was tired of making little dots so I switched gears a little bit to start to basecoat the wings and belly. I used Secret Weapon Old Mud for this.
  11. 77043, Eyebeast Bones

    Ooh she’s one of my favourites of the Bonesylvanians! I look forward to it! You’ve really been knocking those out of the park!
  12. Thanks, @Cyradis! Those are (unfortunately) great examples! So continuing on with the shading with the glaze of MSP Clear Blue. Then I took unthinned Clear Blue and deepened the darkest of the shadows, anywhere that was on the underside of the figure as my typical light source is from above ie. the sun. Now I might darken the shadows further, but I generally find it best to take it only to a certain point and then start working on the highlights. You don't really know how dark to take the shadows if you don't yet know how light you're going to take it. So I went ahead with mixing my first highlight layer. So here's a picture of the two colours I mixed. At the top is MSP Ghostly Moss. If you have this colour, then you'll easily see how inaccurately the camera is capturing these colours. At the bottom is the Scale75 Joryldin Turquoise. I mixed the two until I felt like it was going to be light enough for what I wanted. You'll see the contaminated Ghostly Moss still at the top and then I added a little blob of the Joryldin Turquoise for comparison sake. You'll notice that I've gone quite a bit lighter from the basecoat colour and normally when you layer and want to have a gradual transition from colour to colour, you want to lighten your paint far more gradually. But I don't intend to layer my highlights on this figure's skin. Now this is going to be difficult to see on its own, so on the left is the untouched side of the figure and on the right is the side of the figure that I've begun to highlight. So what I'm doing is creating extra texture on the skin. Most dragons that you're going to paint are going to have armored scales on them whereas this one has just a pebbled texture sculpted in. I wanted to strengthen that textured look. So to create that texture look, you want to take your brush and gently jab it at the surface in a totally random way. You don't want to create uniformed dots but rather random splotches. So, again, here's the side I hadn't done yet on the left and the "finished" (for this layer anyway) side on the right. And then the other side "finished" for this layer. And here are the wings. And lastly for the night, it's really making me sad that I can't get the pictures to show the proper colours, so I put a picture through a photo editing program to colour correct and give you a closer approximation of how these colours look in person.
  13. Alright, so with the greenstuff cured, I went ahead and did a wee bit more work on cleaning up the figure and then literally cleaned it with dish soap on an old tooth brush and warm water, then I primed him with Reaper's Brush-On primer. With that done, I started in how I usually start a figure - with the skin. Now I was thinking about my colour scheme for this guy the other day while I was cleaning up my desk and a particular paint jumped out at me. I haven't fully decided on the secondary colours right now, but we'll get to that. So I used Scale75 Fantasy & Games Joryldin Turquoise and I'm going to be so sad through this whole WIP that y'all won't be able to see the true beauty of this colour. Sure, it looks like a really vibrant, bright blue, but in actuality, there's much more green in it. Cameras have a lot of trouble accurately portraying blues in general and especially teal and turquoise shades. I might try to colour correct at the end but it's just not realistic for me to do so on every WIP picture. So you'll just have to take my word for it at the moment that this colour is even prettier in person. So anyway, if you've never worked with Scale75's paint before, it tends to be very thick and requires a ton of shaking before you try to use it. I have a paint shaker and I still let this paint shake for a good 30 seconds or so. Also, because they are thick, you do want to make sure that you think them a little bit even for a basecoat. As always, check the consistency before you add any water to thin as different paints will have different consistencies straight out of the bottle even within the same brand and even in a brand like Scale75 that is typically very thick. Another important thing to note is that you want to think about what colour overall you're going for. If you're painting a very vibrant colour like this one, you probably want to start with your midtone, that is to say, the colour that you mostly want it to be. From the midtone we're going to paint lighter colours to highlight details and darker colours in the shadows but at the end I want the viewer's eye to perceive the dragon as being this midtone colour. I also wanted to show you one of the problem areas that I knew I was going to have because I assembled the figure before painting it. Sure, I can get a paint brush down in there, but I'm going to have trouble applying anything with any sort of control. For the time being, I just mushed some paint in there and will deal with it further when we get more to that part. So as with any figure, once I've put down my skin basecoat, I like to go ahead and paint in the eyes. So I started by painting in the entirety of the eye socket with MSP Entrail Pink. Now these eyes are very tiny for a dragon or any monster in general and you'll notice that the eyeball itself sits in this sort of hole of an eye socket rather than being a solid part of the face like you'd be more used to with most figures. I think it's an interesting look, but it also gives you a lot less space in which to work and with the overall size being very small in the first place, I had to think long and hard about what I wanted to do with these eyes. It would be very easy to overwhelm them with too much detail. So I filled in the actual eyeball portion with Warcolours One Coat Beige, which is my usual paint for the "whites" of the eyes since you don't really want to use an actual white. The more I stared at his eyes, the more I thought how easily putting too much detail in there was going to muddy the look so I decided to go really simple. So I took Warcolours One Coat Black and painted in a vertical line. And I was pretty happy with that. The Beige has a yellowish tint to it without being too in your face yellow. Much more simple than my usual dragon eyes but I think it's pretty appropriate. So I added a dot of Warcolours One Coat White to the upper top of the outside of the eye. And after a wee bit of cleanup of the blue around the eye, I called them done. Lastly I started working on the shading. It's very easy to go in too dark too quickly with your shading when you're painting very vibrant colours. A really good way to get a lot of shading impact with not too drastic of a transition is by glazing in Reaper Clear line of paints. So I created a glaze (added a bunch of water to) Reaper's Clear Blue. I loaded up my brush and then dabbed the excess moisture onto a paper towel. This shading is going to take a while as first I'm going to lay in the colour sort of as a sketch where I want it rather than working on one particular spot and trying to get perfect transitions.
  14. That'd be cool, thanks! Like Buglips said, we're happy to hear suggestions but can't guarantee that we'll absolutely do the specific figures suggested. But by all means, feel free to suggest things but what will be most helpful is if you additionally state why you're suggesting that figure. Sure, "I really like this figure" or "I want to paint this figure and would like to see examples" are perfectly valid reasons for making suggestions, but what would be more helpful is "Because I'd like to see how you approach spell effects" or OSL or armour or whatever. At the end of the day, we have to want to paint the figures because no one's going to have as good of an experience if we're not really into what we're painting, right? We won't have fun painting the figure so we won't put as much effort in and it won't be as useful for anyone. Not to mention, who wants to spend money on a figure that they don't actually like? But if you have a general reason for something that you want to see, well then maybe even if we don't do the specific figure, we might already have a figure planned where we could demonstrate whatever you're looking to see on that instead and at the very least, move that figure up on the list since there's obvious interest in something specific. I'm so glad they've been helpful to you! Make sure you let us know when you get your Thanis painted! Better yet, do a WIP thread! I wouldn't have thought that being public-spirited and nerd hobbying were mutually exclusive, but I have been very fortunate to have called the Reaper forum home from the start, so perhaps I've been a bit sheltered from less friendly hobby nerds.
  15. So, unfortunately I didn't properly document the issue. In the picture where I start talking about the mold slippage, I had already been carving away at the ridge for some time when I thought "ah, crap, I should've taken more pictures of this." So it was worse than it looked there and to answer your question, yes, I did consider using greenstuff for it once I realized how extensive the issue was. The reason I didn't go that direction is because, honestly, I'm not terribly comfortable with using greenstuff. I'm trying to get myself more familiar with it, but right now my skill level with it is only at a level for adequate-ish gap filling. To use it on the entire length of the figure in a way that would actually look good would take some minor and pretty rudimentary sculpting skill, but minor as it may be, it wasn't something that I felt comfortable doing. I felt far more comfortable with carving it down even though it was quite a bit more time consuming and perhaps more risky in a physical sense, but I felt that aesthetically speaking, I would have a better result with treating it like a particularly gnarly mold line. Thank you for bringing that up, as certainly greenstuff would be a very good solution to the issue for people who are more comfortable or at least more adventurous with their greenstuffing.
  16. Thanks for following along with us! We really enjoy doing them, so it’s always good to hear that people like them and find them helpful!
  17. Alright, so when you have a figure like this that comes in multiple parts, the very first thing that you want to do is make sure that you have all of the pieces. Reaper is really great, but there can be occasions where something went awry. Fortunately, when that does happen, Reaper has great costumer service and will send you a replacement piece very quickly. I had one occasion where I had two of the same arm for a troll and they sent me both arms right away to make sure that I had everything I needed. So make sure you check before you start just to be certain. It's a much easier thing to get taken care of before you've started painting. So the best way to verify that you have everything is to do what we refer to as "dry-fitting" which is just fitting the character together without using any glue. That way you know everything's there and how it's going to fit together, so you know if you have any issues to contend with - things like whether you need to shave any of the metal off to make a fit more snug or where the gaps are that might need filling. You can also see ahead of time areas where you might have issues painting - tricky areas to get into and whatnot. That is what led me to discover that I had a bit of an issue going on. His legs did not line up to sit properly in the holes for his feet. Now, it's not uncommon for parts to come bent and usually it's an easy fix to just gently, but firmly bend the part back into place - things like arms or weapons. But this guy's legs are SOLID. I could not make them budge for the life of me. I had no idea what to do. Fortunately, I was talking to Buglips at the time and he had an idea. So I took a screwdriver and slid it between the two legs, like so: Then I used gentle pressure to leverage the legs further apart. I did this very gradually because I didn't want to move the leg too far and then not be able to bend it back. Much better. So with that problem solved, I went on to mold line removal. Now my cast has some issues that are not common. Rather than a traditional mold line, I've got some big ridges to contend with. This is referred to as mold slippage, where the two halves of the mold did not completely line up when the figure was cast. It's different from a mold line - a mold line is that little bit of extra metal at the seams. With mold slippage, there's a big ridge where the two halves didn't align properly. Like I said, this is not common and is the first time I've had it happen with a metal Reaper figure. I suspect that had I written to Reaper and explained the problem, they would have replaced the figure. Reaper stands by the quality of their figures and are really good about making things right. However, since I was already working on the figure, I decided to just forge ahead with it. You'll see that Buglips' copy of the same figure did not have these same issues, so it's not a common problem with this particular figure, nor is it, as I said, common at all. I'm not sure how clearly you can see it, (although if you go back and look at my fresh out of the blister picture, I think it's pretty obvious - you can also compare my picture to Buglips' picture and see the difference between a mold slippage ridge like this and normal mold lines) but it runs the entire length of the figure and took quite a bit of work to clean up. I used my exacto blade to cut away the ridge and spent a couple of hours very carefully doing so, as I didn't want to gouge the figure nor myself. The biggest problem that an issue like this will cause is loss of detail from the areas that you have to carve away and I think it would be a bigger problem on a smaller figure, especially if it happens to fall into areas that have lots of detail sculpted into them. With this figure, I treated the ridge just like a really big mold line. You'll see in subsequent pictures that I missed some spots and still need to do a bit more work. So once I decided to move on, I went ahead and clipped the arms apart. Your natural inclination may be to cut the arms away from the sprue as close to the arm as possible and that may be the proper way to do it in some cases. You always want to check ahead of time how pieces that come on a sprue actually attach to the figure though and in this case, you want to cut the arms away as close to the sprue as you can so that you're leaving the tabs on the ends of the arms. They're meant to be there, as they're what help the arms to fit into the figure. Leaving the tabs on, the arms fit very neatly into the arm holes and it was such a nice fit that on one of them, the arm actually stayed in place without any glue....but obviously you want to use glue to make it permanently stay...unless you're into removable arms on your figures. Now something to note here is that you want to make good decisions on how much you're going to assemble a figure before you do so. Fully assembling a multi-part figure can cause you access issues with your paint brush down the road. However, you also have to weigh how important that access is to you against the complication of greenstuffing the figure. Some multi-part figures don't need any greenstuffing to fill in gaps and some do. Some require less greenstuff to fill the gaps than others. You absolutely want to think about those things before you forge ahead with assembly. Sometimes the easiest thing to do is to partially assemble the model, sometimes it's easiest to fully assemble and sometimes it's easiest to paint each piece separately and assemble later. There's no right answer. I weighed the pros and cons and decided that I wanted to have an easier time with the greenstuff and not have to patch up my paint job down the road and went ahead with fully assembling the model with super glue. Now for the most part, he fits together really well (my issues with the bent legs aside) and one could reasonably decide not to do any gap filling at all and it would be fine, especially if you're just painting the figure for tabletop use. I wanted to go ahead and fill the gaps though. So I've mentioned before that there's kind of this rule with greenstuff where you will always mix up at least twice as much as you actually need, so take half as much as you think you need and then cut that in half again and you'll probably still end up with twice as much as you needed. Well, I was talking while I was mixing up my greenstuff and not thinking and ended up with this much mixed... Someone with sculpting talent could probably sculpt an entire human sized figure with that amount. Good job, Guindy. Fortunately, I had another project that I could use it for, so it didn't go to waste. I would suggest, if you're going to work with greenstuff, to always have something that we refer to as a "putty catcher." This is something that you have on hand that you can use any extra greenstuff you might have on. I have a couple of such projects, so it wasn't a bother at all. So when you work with greenstuff, you want to remember that any surface that you do not want the greenstuff to stick to should be wet. So your fingers, your tools and the surface that you leave the putty on. I recommend putting your mixed greenstuff on the plastic from a blister. I just leave mine sitting in a puddle of water on my desk because I'm a savage. So to fill gaps, what I do is roll a little snake of greenstuff and place it in the gap that I want to fill. Then I cut away the excess. Then using a sculpting tool that I have with a pointy end (a toothpick will work just as well) I poke the greenstuff into the gap and then flatten and drag out the excess. If there's texture in the spot where it is, I'll try to mimic that texture with little pokes and dragging my tool through it. For areas that I want to be flatter, like the arms, I wet my finger and then press and drag to smooth it out. I'm honestly not particularly skilled with greenstuff, but I thought he looked pretty good. Now, normally I would tell you that you can go ahead and prime over top of the greenstuff before it's cured. However, Buglips made me realize that I actually forgot to wash him with dish soap and water, which I normally would have done before assembly. I was so distracted by cleaning up the ridge that I totally forgot. SO don't forget that! There is often mold release agent on figures that you want to clean off because it will not play nice with your primer or paint. So I left the greenstuff to cure over night because otherwise, I would've ruined the work I'd done with the old toothbrush that I use for scrubbing. It'll be fine to use over cured greenstuff though.
  18. 77043, Eyebeast Bones

    He was one of my absolute favourites of the entries. I loved your creativity with him and the base is subtle but effective and very well done. I love the fins and I'd wondered if you'd sculpted those on or used something for a conversion - you definitely thought outside the box using the Slithe Queen's hands! I really love monsters and any aquatic things and this guy made me smile so much. Really, really well done!
  19. Mother Nature Bust

    Gorgeous work as always! I know it’s super time consuming to make a detailed WIP; thank you for sharing your process with us! I’m excited to see where she goes!
  20. Reapercon 2017 Sophie

    Rather than giving a paint suggestion, I’m going to suggest that you get a reference picture of red brick that you like and see if you can recreate that look. Just google image search “red brick” and you’ll see plenty of examples. You tend to see a lot of pink and orange tones in red brick, as well as a rusty brown. As as far as drybrushing, it may be your brush that’s the problem. You want to use a really skuzzy damaged brush for drybrushing. Damaged bristles will hold the pigment better while releasing the moisture from the brush. These are my current drybrushing brushes: These poor brushes have seen terrible, awful things. I’ve beat them up horribly and have let paint dry in them. As a result, they’re really great for drybrushing. All 3 of them are cheap synthetic brushes and the one all the way on the right started out all normal with a decent tip to it, but I cruelly cut its bristles in half to make a drybrush that was legal size 0 for 7 day challenges
  21. Guindyloo and Buglips paint DHL 02818: Bugbear Warrior!

    It's not a competition. So I also just had the final details to finish on my bugbear. I basecoated the tassel on his belt with MSP Moldy Skin, mainly because it was on my palette already. I didn't want it to stand out too much, but I did want to differentiate it from the leather bits. While that was drying, I painted all of his nails with Secret Weapon Tire Black, which is a really nice blue-black with a satin finish. Next I put a wash of GW Coelia Greenshade on the tassel and put a first highlight on the nails of Secret Weapon Rubber, which is a dark blue-grey that compliments the Tire Black really well. I glazed in a little more of the Coelia Greenshade in a couple of spots on the tassel, which I then decided to call done, and did a final highlight of Secret Weapon Rubber Highlight, which is a medium blue-grey, to finish up the nails. I like these 3 as a combination for black and will definitely be trying them out again on a larger surface. Then I basecoated his base with Secret Weapon Brown Rust. I wanted a reddish brown, which normally I would use MSP Mahogany Brown for, but since I'd used that for his hair, I wanted a variance of colour but still in the same sort of family. Brown Rust is more on the brownish side of the red-brown family and I think it's a really lovely compliment to the mahogany shade. Then I used Secret Weapon Red Rust, which is a little lighter and a touch more red than Brown Rust, I just side brushed that over the highest points for a bit of highlighting. Next I took Secret Weapon Dark Wood, which is a really lovely dark tan brown with just a hint of green to it and I used that just to give a little bit of variance to the shadows to deepen them up. Then I took Secret Weapon Old Mud, which is a dark khaki sort of brown and added a little bit of MSP Moldy Skin to it and sidebrushed that over the highest surfaces of the base. I think that gave it a really interesting, varied look to the base. I think it turned out looking a bit like he's standing on a slab of crusted over dried clay. And with that, he's done! I decided not to darken up his very prominent nipples because they made me uncomfortable. You'll have to just marvel at Buglips' bugbear's nipples.
  22. Fire Tackles Maal Drakar in 7 Days

    When I did my 7 day challenge for Ma'al Drakar, from Day 3 on, I was constantly in tears and seriously considered quitting every single day. It took a good 3 weeks for my back and wrist to finally fully recover. And I knew what I was in for after doing the 3 other 7 day challenges. I have serious respect for anyone that gets this beast done in 7 days with a size 0 brush, and especially for those of you that jumped into it as your first 7 day challenge. You should be hella proud of yourself - not only did you succeed, but you painted a great looking dragon!
  23. Fire Tackles Maal Drakar in 7 Days

    Yaaaaay!!! I knew you could do it!
  24. Fire Tackles Maal Drakar in 7 Days

    *waves pompoms* You’re nearly at the finish line and you’re going to have such an awesome beastie!!!