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Krolik1519

65051: Jolie, Female Scribe

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I just started painting minis a few months ago, I bought a few to start with and only have done about 8 so far. Lately some co-workers have asked me to paint their minis so it was a little while before I was able to go back to paint one for myself. I started Jolie over the weekend but I feel that her paint seems to be coming out rather thick. Pictures also seem to make her look much worse than she does in person.

 

I was thinking I might go back and change her hair to brown again with some colored highlights... the green got over done. I am also not happy with the top of the bodice I will redo that for the umpteenth time. I haven't attached her other arm yet but I will when I finish the rest of her. Her bottles and stuff on her belt also hasn't been painted yet. I would have also put pupils in her eyes if I had not somehow misplaced my last metal pin <_<

 

Since I'm a noobie any help or suggestions are greatly appreciated.

 

 

jolieWIP.jpg

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Just a few suggestions:

 

I would strongly suggest priming your figures first before painting them. The paint can chip and peal easier without it. Everyone here has there own suggestion but I use the Skull White from Games Workshop. It is more expensive but it coats evenly and without bumps. Thin spray coating is all you need.

 

You need to thin your paints. I use a drop of water for every 4 drops of paint and mix well. But this is just me you may want to play with drop amounts. Let it dry completely before moving to the next tone color. Many thin coats look better then one thick coat.

 

Color consistency is also what you need to do as well. Get the color consistent within the color you are doing before you move on.

 

I would also suggest working from the deepest spot first then working up from there. For example, work on the inside of the diamond and triangles on her abdomen before working on the yellow straps. If you touch the straps with the red it would be easier to fix later then if you started the yellow already. I still need to follow this rule sometimes.

 

Over all, not a bad paint job for starting only a few months ago.

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I did prime her first with Reaper Paint on Primer, a few coats but it seems to not last and causes the chipping, maybe my bottle is particularly watery. Maybe I will look into getting the spray stuff.

 

I will try to thin the paints, that is probably a good solution, the paint by itself seems to dry up so quickly and then chip. As far as the straps on her bodice go I completely painted it red, then made the straps yellow, messed it up and repeat. Maybe I need better lighting to see the straps better.

 

Maybe I should strip her and start over....

 

Thanks for the suggestions.

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For pieces like the straps on the bodice, sometimes it works to run the side of the brush with a thinned paint (but not drippy) on the piece. Think of it like a balance beam - if you have bad balance and try using a small area (toes, or tips of paint brushes) you may fall or go unevenly. If you can get a larger flat surface to cover the beam without hitting things near it, you can push the surface smoother than you could with the tip. Can't use this for everything, but I find that it helps a lot in getting the straps of things smooth when possible. Just angle the brush slightly.

 

I'm also a fan of going section by section to an extent, but opinions vary. I do main layering, then shade in gaps for large pieces, but for smaller things I go deepest to outside. Been called backwards before, but I've done it successfully for a few dozen figures and it works for me. I think it goes with the balance beam analogy - if I try highlighting, the brush is likely to fall (A rippling gown doesn't have as flat a surface as a strap) but if I can put the brush in the channel, it goes where it should naturally.

 

For the eyes, just work on your balance and try the brush. Don't worry about a pin. Many figures with smaller eyes don't get irises, and it is better to have plain eyes done well than more intricate eyes done sloppy. I use either a 0.2mm pen or whichever brush holds the finest tip best when I do eyes. It takes practice, and sometimes the figures get out of manufacturing with goofy eyes. Best you can do, and eventually you'll look at your figures and they'll be staring straight back at you, instead of cross-eyed or with chameleon eyes. I have enough of those to make a few mini adventuring parties!

 

Try to note somehow which figures you do first, so you can see your own progression. I used to have mine lined up on the TV from start to later ones, and each one had improvements, to the extent where you could pinpoint when I "got" a certain idea. Helped remind me that even a goof was no big deal, and to show just how much practice helps.

 

Don't strip her yet! You can do a lot of touching up to smooth her. Try just putting on thin layers of paint in fudge areas until it is the right color consistency and has the right edges. You can approximate a circle by chopping off the tips of a square repeatedly, making it an octagon and then a 16 side polygon, etc. Keep going lightly until it is right.

 

Good for an ~8th figure, keep it up!

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I like your color choices for this mini ::): I think the earlier comments are right: your paint is too thick. If you do decide to start over, I've found that Simple Green diluted for common household use and a toothbrush work great without pitting the metal (not that I speak from experience or anything :;):

 

-Kael

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I like your color choices for this mini ::): I think the earlier comments are right: your paint is too thick. If you do decide to start over, I've found that Simple Green diluted for common household use and a toothbrush work great without pitting the metal (not that I speak from experience or anything :;):

 

-Kael

 

Agreed. Toothbrush works too.

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I like the colour scheme you did. It's cool to see minis painted differently like that.. she's usually in colourful robes lookin' like a normal person or perhaps a wizard, but yours looks like a witch (or maybe she's just gothy lol) The area around her neck looks really cool, it reminds me a lot of Illidan from Warcraft if you've played those games.. the bright green on purple I mean.

 

Have you done the Learn to Paint kits Reaper makes? They're a good way to get a bunch of paint, brushes and practice minis for cheap and they teach you a lot if you are just starting. I say this because I, too, am a noob. ;D

 

Oh and her eyes look shut to me, like she has on black eyeshadow. Is that intentional? Sorry I can't see in the picture very well. I thought it looked cool but I saw you mentioned painting the pupils. If you do decide to do pupils (and for the bodice laces this might help) you can buy a tinytinytiny brush from Michaels for like, 5 bucks. Just save it for the tinytiny details like that. And wipe off the paint before you do it so there's not even a drop, that way it's light.. you just brush it on gently, so if you miss it's not a big deal.

 

I hope this was helpful.

 

ETA- The paint-on primer only works well if you shake it like a polaroid picture before using it. :) If you try spray on you'll fall in love. Citadel or Army-painter are good brands, you only need 1-2 coats.. just do light sprays from different angles until there's no more silver. It dries quickly and as long as you don't get it all drippy it won't mess up the details.

 

I would also recommend keeping a q-tip, paper towel scrap, and straight pins around. If you ever mess up you can quickly dab away paint with a wet q-tip, if the paint is thin enough (like a wash) a bit of napkin will suck it back off the mini, and a straight pin can be used to scrap away some semi-dried paint which is good for detailed difficult areas where you paint over and over trying to get it right. The paint shouldn't be completely dry, it only works well the same day.

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Your off to a good start. I have a couple suggestions to make your life easier. I would glue your figures to a temporary base like a water bottle cap or something similar using Elmers glue so when your painting your figure so you have less of a problem with the paint wearing off while you paint it. Then when your done with the figure you can just pop it off. Secondly, while it might make painting a little more difficult, I would glue the figure together before priming and painting. Gluing metal to metal forms a stronger bond plus if you put super glue on a painted figure when you try and glue the hand on you'll find that the superglue discolors the paint near the joint. I also have a trick to use for eyes that helps prevent the cross eyed look. Try painting your figures to be looking at an angle rather than straight on. This really helped me out in the beginning.

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joliewip2.jpg

 

So I stripped her, (thought it was best to start over) bought spray primer and thinned out my paint before starting again. I will temporarily glue her to a bottle cap like you suggested Flameberge because she still is chipping with the thinned paint. Sorry for the unfocused pictures, got what pictures I could before the batteries in my camera ran out and I was sitting at my desk at work (not awesome lighting).

 

To get shadows in the deeper areas should I use an ink wash or darker shades of paint? I've seen different ways for doing this.

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joliewip2.jpg

 

So I stripped her, (thought it was best to start over) bought spray primer and thinned out my paint before starting again. I will temporarily glue her to a bottle cap like you suggested Flameberge because she still is chipping with the thinned paint. Sorry for the unfocused pictures, got what pictures I could before the batteries in my camera ran out and I was sitting at my desk at work (not awesome lighting).

 

To get shadows in the deeper areas should I use an ink wash or darker shades of paint? I've seen different ways for doing this.

 

Depends on the detail you want...for tabletop, you will be more than fine using an inkwash and a little highlighting...if you want to go for a above tabletop you should shade using actual thinned paint and avoid the ink washes in most places.

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jolie3.jpg

 

I'm basically done with her, I'm working on finishing her base now (since the little one she is standing on makes her constantly tip over). I'm satisfied with how she looks in person, even though there isn't as much shading and highlights as I would want. I failed in the applying highlights department. Maybe I should float around in the shutterbug forums and actually make a good 3-point lighting set up (Besides the two crappy ceiling lights I use now.) My minis always look like crap in photos, and in my noobish opinion, great in person.

 

 

With the base:

jolie3pic.jpg

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jolie3.jpg

Maybe I should float around in the shutterbug forums and actually make a good 3-point lighting set up (Besides the two crappy ceiling lights I use now.) My minis always look like crap in photos, and in my noobish opinion, great in person.

 

Short version:

 

Use either two or three lights with a similar color temperature. (All the same brand of compact fluorescent or all incandescent.

 

Use a light box like the one shown here.

 

Use a light to medium gray background. (White or black will screw up automatic exposures, though if you're comfortable in manual, they can work pretty well. Colored backgrounds will screw up automatic white balancing.)

 

Use macro or super macro mode (if you have them) and fill the frame with the figure as much as you can. (Then crop in post to remove dead space.)

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Short version:

 

Use either two or three lights with a similar color temperature. (All the same brand of compact fluorescent or all incandescent.

 

Use a light box like the one shown here.

 

Use a light to medium gray background. (White or black will screw up automatic exposures, though if you're comfortable in manual, they can work pretty well. Colored backgrounds will screw up automatic white balancing.)

 

Use macro or super macro mode (if you have them) and fill the frame with the figure as much as you can. (Then crop in post to remove dead space.)

 

I did create a light box like you suggested. These are the images I got from it, much better than what I used to get even though I am still missing some lights to complete the light box. It wasn't until after I created it that my husband told me... "You know I have a professional light box and stage at work you can come by and use." ...Oh well, now I have something decent at home when I don't want to go to his work and use the real one. :upside:

 

IG_790_1.jpgIG_790_2.jpg

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