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Wren last won the day on December 15 2016

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About Wren

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  • Birthday 07/13/1967

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    Knoxville, TN (formerly Toronto, Canada)

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  1. MSP Advice - Black Primer

    Most paints will coat over black given enough coats. My impression of your question is that you're looking for as few coats as possible to maximize speed of painting. I am not at all familiar with the current line of GW paints, and it's been a while since I used P3s. I have 'em, I'm just more accustomed to my Master Series so reach for those first. For trying Reaper paints, my advice to you would be to select from the HD lines. This includes the original HD (paints starting with SKU numbers 29***) and the Bones HD paints (which start with SKU numbers 094**). These are formulated to paint with fewer coats than some of the Master Series Core line would. Note that these are not the triad system paints, so if the triad system is what is interesting you to try Reaper paints, the triads may not suit your other preferences. Between the two HD sets there is a pretty nice colour array, and many colours will have a range from light to dark that is similar to the idea of the triads. It's also worth noting that pigments limit the opacity of any paints. Bright yellows, reds, and greens tend to be transparent in any paint line, because of the nature of the pigments. One way to mix a paint to look more opaque is to formulate the colour with a bit of white and/or black added, but doing so tamps down the intensity of the colour. So the HD reds are more opaque than most of the core MSP reds, but they're still going to require a few coats to cover, and that's likely true of your GW and P3 paints, too. (I love the HD reds and use them pretty much exclusively unless I"m being really specific about colour choices.) Likewise, there are certain pigments that are by nature much more opaque. Most browns, neutrals, and skin tones are on the more opaque side, including those in the MSP core line. Colours that are more muted also tend to be more opaque, and the core MSP line has plenty of those. There are exceptions (browns with a lot of yellow or orange pigment tend to be more transparent), of course, but it's a decent guideline for choosing colours between the lines. All three of those paint ranges should mix together just fine. So you should be able to buy a few Reaper paints to try out to see if you like. There can be some differences between paint lines, and some people will notice that more than others, depending on your painting style and how used to your current paints you are. I had trouble working with the P3 when I first tried them just for lack of familiarity. I found it helpful to use a mix of the new paints and ones I was more familiar with to start getting used to them. Though conversely it can also be helpful to get to know a paint line by painting a few figures with just the new paint and pushing yourself to figure out how to use them well with how you like to paint.
  2. Pro Paint Cornflower

    You could also try mixing some blues with Pearl White. The end result should be a satin and that would give you a lot of control over the exact blue you get.
  3. Properties of Paint

    A lot of the variation between paint colours is related to the pigment(s) more than the other factors. Pigments come from a variety of sources, including manufactured chemical mixes and minerals from the earth. (There are now manufactured substitutes for some of those, too.) A given pigment can have different properties. One example is how opaque or transparent it is. Some are super opaque and cover other things easily, others are rich colours but transparent. Some are innately shiny, some are inherently matte. I believe some are also by nature more grainy looking and others very fine and smooth looking when made into paints. (In watercolour paint you have something called granularity, which is literally leaving little flecks of deeper colour in spots. Those same pigments are mixed into non-watercolour paints, so maybe those are the ones people think look roughly ground or something.) Some are very staining and hard to get off of a surface, others less so. The staining ones are what will start to change the colour of your paintbrush. Even though you've washed all of the paint off of your paintbrush, if you've used a staining colour it can dye the bristles. (Or if you're going to spill paint on the floor, try not to do it with a staining colour. It's possible I have learned this through bitter personal experience...) Traditional artists tend to welcome and use these different pigment properties. The granularity I mentioned in watercolour paint may sound like a terrible thing, but you can get wonderful effects with it like sandy beaches or clothing textures or all kinds of things. Transparent colours also sound like a pain, but one of the reasons oil paintings can look so lovely is the layering of transparent paint colours to build up an effect. Miniature painters prefer to have as uniform a product as possible - so they'd like all the paints to be equally opaque and the same finish (matte is the current preference). So our paints are mixed with these market preferences in mind. To make a transparent red or yellow more opaque, the mix may include some white and/or black paint. Matting agents are included in the mix to get the even finish. A mix might also include a little bit of flow improver (makes the paint come off the brush more smoothly) or drying retarder (slows down how quickly the acrylic dries), or the company might make these available separately so you can customize your mixes to your preference. (Or you can buy the art store equivalents from Golden or Liquitex.) The clear paints are closer to the traditional art paint mixes. They're purer pigments, without white, black, or other opacifiers mixed in. So they won't tend to cover as well as you might expect from a miniature paint, and that's one reason they're set aside as being a different sort of product. But you'll get purer colours if you mix colours with clears than you will with the main line paints. (So when you mix colours, if you follow the advice of colour wheels and charts, red + yellow = orange, yellow + blue = green, and so on. But if you're mixing with a miniature paint that LOOKS like a pure yellow but might actually have some black and/or white and/or something else in it to make it more opaque, it's going to make a different and probably duller end result colour than if you mix with a single pigment yellow.) Likewise, the purer colour nature of the clear paints makes them useful for glazing to enrich other colours. They're potent colours, thinning them down and applying them over a duller colour will punch it up. I don't know a lot about the liner mix, but I suspect it has a little more flow improver in it as that would help it do its job of lining better. I mix my own 'liner' colours all the time with a bit of flow improver. It's not exactly the same as a Reaper mix out of the bottle, but does the job well when I want a custom colour. Lining is when you paint a dark line to separate areas of the miniature. Like a line between the sleeve of a shirt and the skin of the arm. I also use the liners a lot to mix custom shade colours. Using the same colour in the shadows of all of the areas on a figure helps the colour scheme and light source to look more uniform. Since the liners are nice dark colours and already a little transparent, they're handy for that purpose. *NOTE: I have read up on some paint stuff, but I'm no expert by any stretch of the imagination. I also have some familiarity with the Reaper paint production process, and the use of miniature paints, but again, not an expert. So I make no claims that any of my statements are 100% correct.
  4. 77068: Anirion, Wood Elf Wizard

    You are doing a great job with him! And your pictures are pretty good for an ad hoc situation. Thank you so much for your kind words about the kit instructions. If you have any feedback, please feel welcome to let me know so I can keep it in mind when writing future kits. I'm so tickled that you've found the kit so helpful!
  5. Since the painting guide is now posted, I thought I'd share my pictures of Baran. To get to the painting guide, go to the Dungeon Dwellers link posted on the front page of the Reaper main site. I'm also including here a WIP picture of working on the shield. Bones miniatures are great for doing tests and practice - even the bases can help! ;-> I needed a flat surface, so I grabbed a Bones. I measured the size of the quarters on the shield and drew it on to the bottom of the Bones base with a Sharpie. It's very easy when practicing freehand to practice at larger than the size you actually have available on the figure.
  6. Reapercon Paint Contest Galleries

    Are you still having problems Pochi? I had looked at the galleries recently and went to check just now, and I was able to see past contest pictures. On this most recent visit I did find that I had to let the gallery page load entirely before I could successful click individual pictures, but I was seeing thumbnails and text straight away, not just the wallpaper.
  7. Cleaning flash of metal figs

    There's a certain amount of choice and preference. I do almost all of my cleaning of metal figures with diamond files. When I started I used standard metal files, but prefer the diamond. (In both cases these are small files, 2mm diameter on the round holder edge.) I'm just more comfortable with that than a sharp blade for metal. I like to scrape areas clean with a knife on resin, and slice mouldlines off with a scalpel on Bones. An alternate to the trick Gadgetman mentioned - you can fill in pock marks or level out next to hard to reach mouldlines with applications of sealer. Reaper Brush-on Sealer is easy to use for that. If an area is really deep or pocked, you can use gloss sealer. Gloss is a little trickier since it's thick enough that you can unintentionally add texture if you don't smooth out the edges with a brush.
  8. 12 Days of Reaper Begins December 6th!

    You won one of the 12 days from Blick?! Congrats, that is so awesome!
  9. Moldy Skin and Bloodless Skin have changed very slightly. The newer formulation of Bloodless Skin is just a touch paler and grey than the original mix. Moldy has had three variations, again very slightly. The newest formulation appears just a touch more of a yellow green than original. The mid period mix is a little paler as well as a bit more yellow. Again, these are very slight variations. As Heisler says, it is likely due to changes in the base used to mix the paint. The base is the 'acrylic' part of the paint, with binders and so on, as opposed to the pigments, which are the aspects mixed to create the colours. But there are different types of bases, and they affect the appearance of the pigments. There have been one or two occasions where a certain base has gone out of production or been deemed less optimal for use and another has to be used instead. I am not aware of any changes with the Vampiric triad. It's a newer one and I don't use it much, so I haven't replaced mine to compare with the older one. I am a paint-a-holic, so I bought most of the colours when they first became available, and then a few years back updated a lot of my collection. Where I noticed changes, I kept the original bottles as well as the new. The only other colour I have (unless I'm forgetting one) like that is Rosy Skin. The newest formulation is a little lighter in colour than the original. I have a vague memory of either Violet Red or Pale Violet Red changing, but if that memory is correct, I did not keep the original bottle. (I gave it to a friend, so it's dimly possible I could compare at some point.) I am attaching photos of the paint bottles and the drop swatches on top, taken against a neutral grey background.
  10. 01621 Winter Elf

    I had a question about painting the whites on the Facebook group, so in the event that it helps anyone I thought I'd copy and paste it over here. Those kind of whites do take a while to paint, I'll start by saying that. I started with Maggot White as a basecoat. Then I worked progressively darker in layers of slightly thinned paint starting with one just a bit darker than the white, then a bit darker again, and so on. (If you're seeing demarcation lines between layers, thin the paint more and/or make more mix steps between your lightest and darkest shades.) With white I always try to start very light with the first shades and work down. It's so easy to go darker than you want/need and then have to spend even more time bringing back some of the white. I highlighted with Pure White and then Dragon White, the latter of which I think is the whitest white in the Reaper line, though I need to do a more thorough test to be sure. The darkest paint was Retro Slate, which was a ReaperCon colour so not easily available. It's close in value to Templar Blue or Twilight Blue in value (darkness). I suspect if you mixed those two together you'd get something pretty close to the Slate, thoughI haven't tested that theory. That darkest colour was really only used in the deepest crevices, though. The first layers were Maggot White plus Ashen Blue, then Ashen Blue, and a few touches of Ashen with some Slate. Remember when painting white that white is your midtone and your highlight. So you have to keep the shadow colours to a smaller area of the material than you think. If you don't, it stops looking white and starts looking tan or blue or whatever colour you're using for shading.
  11. 01621 Winter Elf

    And here is the last of the new figures I painted for this year's Twelve Days, the Winter Elf. I think Bob Ridolfi sculpted her in such a way that you could choose different colours and easily use her as a non-holiday figure. This is the figure for the last day, December 17.
  12. 01612 Mylk & Cookies

    Reporting back on the modeling paste. It's not cured putty hard, but it seems pretty sturdy. I could dent it with a fingernail, but it took a bit of pressure not a casual touch. Ditto for scraping a bit of it off.
  13. 01612 Mylk & Cookies

    Hm, I don't think I've used the modeling paste in a context where I've really noted the final finish of the product. I just now put a glob out on a plate to test, and will try to report back. I think that it would work in the way you describe, but it is a little thicker than frosting. The Woodland Scenics Water Effects might work better. It's a little less thick feeling, and it comes in a bottle where you're supposed to cut the end off the tip to dispense it, which is as small or smaller than the hole in a piping bag. (I think. I very occasionally bake cookies, but my decorating of them is much more primative. ;->) The Water Effects is also watersoluble, so you can smooth it out with a damp brush. Water Effects dries to a rubbery consistency. It's fairly sturdy, but when I do stuff like sculpt flames with it, I would tend not to do that on gaming figures that are going to get a ton of handling by ham-fisted people, but I haven't had problems with it on convention figures I've schlepped around. The torch the little critter is carrying (scroll down a bit) is an example of using it for flames: http://www.coolminiornot.com/186472?browseid=4548948 You could also try asking Pingo, I know she's familiar with modeling paste, and may be more of a baker than I. :-> Hardest part of painting this was the cookie cravings! I'm trying to eat low carb. :->
  14. 01612 Mylk & Cookies

    Mylk and her pilfered Cookies are the Twelve Days of Reaper miniature for December 13, 2017. Julie did a great job capturing the idea that a big part of the holiday spirit is all the yummy food to enjoy. The icing decorations on the gingerbread men were added with Woodland Scenics Water Effects. This is a thick gel. If you put a dab on a toothpick, it will form a sharp peak. I 'drew' the lines and dots with the peak of the substance rather than the toothpick tip. (Every few dots/strokes I reload with gel from the bottle and form that peak again.)I wanted the icing on the shape cookies to be smooth and not really have peaks, so I used a slightly thinner substance called modeling paste. Liquitex and Golden make this to create textured acrylic paintings. I am pretty sure that Liquid Greenstuff is just modeling paste with green colour added. I scooped up a small amount with a toothpick and smoothed it on, pretty much like icing real cookies. If it went astray or needed to be smoothed on top, I used a damp paintbrush. (Maybe don't do that when icing real cookies.) You could probably experiment and use either one of those substances for both functions, I just happened to have both so I used both. The Winter Elf in the scale picture is a standard humanoid size Reaper figure.
  15. 01620 Cat Dragon Promo Figure

    It's pretty fully formed I'd say. There are spots that just touch the sides of the box. It's a metal mini, so it wouldn't necessarily be my idea of a fun time to try to grind or clipper it down, but I'm much more of a painter than a modeler. Could probably be done to get it down far enough to make it look more on top of a box. Thought note that the box is at an angle as it's resting on top of the lid. I don't know if the positioning would start to look odd if you removed that from the bottom. I'm attaching a couple of pics from above (with phone, so they don't look as nice) in case that helps you decide.