NecroMancer

Eyes the bane of my existence ×

36 posts in this topic

Hey guys I am finishing up painting the female wizard for DDS2 and she is my last adventurer to paint.  I really like how I painted her robes and accents but then I got to the eyes and the wheels fell off!

 

Part of the problem is the Bones material not quite holding the detail on one of the eyes.  The major problem though is ME!!

 

Any tips of links or video recommendations for painting eyes?

 

I might post pictures later so you can see the disaster I created but for now any tips would be appreciated.  I really don't want to have to buy a new one and start over so I am hoping I can salvage her.  Although I painted and painted over them so much last night that I am afraid they are starting to lose their definition.  

 

Thanks in advance.

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Great tips posted here

 

Also, I always try to do eyes first.  That way I don't elf up the rest of the face.

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I haven't been able to master the Betty Davis Eyes technique yet, though it does get good results when you get the hang of it.

 

For me, I go a lot simpler (with equally simpler looking results).  I try to fill the eye with white, or a slightly off white.  Then I get a brush with a really, really, good fine point and just barely dip it into my black.  I then very carefully use the tip to dot the pupil in the eye and call it a day.  Its far from a great result (no color for instance) and it tends to limit the amount of "mood" that the eyes can set, but it at least looks passable.

 

As for starting over, you shouldn't have to buy a new mini of anything.  I'm pretty sure that even Bones can be stripped fairly easily, albeit you have to be a bit more careful about your choice of stripping agent.  I know there are some threads around covering this.

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Posted (edited)

30 minutes ago, Gargs said:

As for starting over, you shouldn't have to buy a new mini of anything.  I'm pretty sure that even Bones can be stripped fairly easily, albeit you have to be a bit more careful about your choice of stripping agent.  I know there are some threads around covering this.

 

Yeah I am hoping since she is kind of at an angle and it being DDS2 with a lot of other stuff going on that her eyes won't be so noticeable.

 

I was getting really frustrated last night and hoping after taking a day or two (if I don't get a chance to paint tonight) that I can go back and get something passable for her eyes.

 

...Maybe I should just make it my thing that I paint sunglasses on all my miniatures...

Edited by NecroMancer
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47 minutes ago, Dilvish the Deliverer said:

You can try Bette Davis Eyes: http://www.reapermini.com/TheCraft/12

 

I thoroughly agree with using this tutorial. It helped me drastically - my figures improved by an order of magnitude. Now I'm trying to finesse it more from there and each improvement takes more work to get good at. However, leaping into this was one of the best things I ever did on painting. I'd just go for a pupil and liner to start with it, and when you feel better about it, try irises etc. 

 

I find that it operates off the idea that it is easier to paint up to a line than to paint within the lines. 

 

If your figure doesn't have too much paint material on it already, I'd just paint over the previous work that you find unsatisfying. Otherwise, call it a day, number/date the figure, and move on. It's part of the learning process (goodness knows we've all messed stuff up time and time again). 

 

Here is a current WIP that I have photos for with the eyes going. I did this for my facebook friend who wanted to know how. I'm not 100% satisfied with her eyes (my current goal is to get more round pupils instead of rectangular) but it turned out pretty well. My new paint brushes and paints are arriving now, finals week, and it is making me kinda cry. I'll be updating her later with some advice from the WIP page, and the incoming paints. 

 

I hope this helps you. 

 

1) Ghost-face. 

Image may contain: 1 person

 

2) Pupils (mine also has irises). If you are just starting out, you can do it more as a vertical line. Worry about rounding them later. You'll get a lot of expression out of the pupils just being distinct. 

No automatic alt text available.No automatic alt text available.

 

3) Raccoon-face. This is the eyeliner. Just make sure that you aren't being gloppy, as you have to cover a lot later. As you improve, the region taken by raccoon face will lessen. Paint up to the whites, to as bright or squinty as you like (sometimes the figure dictates this more than others). 

Image may contain: 1 person

 

4) Basic skin tone. At first, you'll end up with really thick eyeliner. Fortunately for me my first try at this was on a rather old Egyptian style figure, so it made sense for her to wear kohl. The goal is to paint up to the line, keeping the line the thickness that you want. I find it easier than filling in the eyes, because I only have one direction of the brush to worry about instead of two directions. 

Image may contain: 1 person

 

5) Shade the face in. You'll still have to be careful around the eyes, but touch-ups of liner are easier than touch-ups of pupils. I'll be doing more shading and highlighting on this figure later. *whines about final projects*

Image may contain: 1 person

 

She isn't perfect, but I hope that illustrates the method alright and helps you :) 

Oh! And this is my personal note... avoid caffeine, especially for faces. Even if this method makes it easier (for me at least), I still don't want to risk the jitters. 

I've had a few faces turn out erm... wonky. Like crazy bug-eyed monster people. Trial and error. Lack of caffeine and practice is the best thing. May all be well for you! 

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Paint the eye that's tougher to reach, first. Then paint the easier one to match.

Cyradis has a good method posted....but don't be discouraged if you have to repeat it 20 or 50 times on the same mini. You'll get better but it takes time.

 

Or learn to sculpt and put sunglasses on everyone. :D

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Even that one posted above I had to redo the iris and pupil placement of one eye a few times so she didn't have a crazy lazy eye. Also had to touch-up the eyeliner while shading once or twice. Before this method though, it took ~3-15 tries to get eyes done, and now I can get them in ~1-3, with minor touch-ups instead of major. My main stress with it is that since the face is done early on the figure instead of late, I'm always scared that I'll goof it up with an errant brush or a sneeze. 

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The more eye-painting techniques you learn, the better. Some you'll use before painting the eye. Others you'll use after you make a mistake.

 

One trick I use is to paint one eye and cover the other with my thumb. That will give me an idea where in the second eye the pupil will be, since I "unconsciously" will picture where the other pupil will be.

 

Another is to paint the figure looking to the right or other direction. This means I don't have to paint an "equal" amount of white on both sides of the pupil. If I make a mistake, I *might* be able to just paint the pupil larger. It *does* look silly when you have a close-up pic of five party members whose eyes all intensely look in different directions, but, in practice, you're not going to notice.

 

My ultimate cheat, of course, is to paint nothing but monsters. Red eyeballs, no pupils. (No, I'm not painting yellow reflective spots in their eyes!)

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No?

First a light grey base, a drop of Mithril or Silver metallic for pupil, then a layer of very thin Tamiya Clear Yellow all over it.

I think... 

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I use the "6 Step Eye Method". Or try to. http://www.arcanepaintworks.com/blog-1/2016/6/9/6-step-eyes

 

Some eyes are way easier (larger) than others and you can get the 6 steps in, others, not so much.

 

I do paint the basecoat of my skin first, then paint the eyes, then shade and highlight my skin. This helps because if I screw up the eyes, I haven't waited until last and messed up the whole face. So eyes are really the first thing I actually paint besides basecoat.

 

One bit of advice I was given, get the faceless horror and practice painting eyes. My LGS didn't have it in stock or I would have done it!

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I'll have to give that method a shot, Pochi. My skepticism is in my ability to paint inside the lines (hence using the method I described). But more methods are better, so I'll have to find a figure to give it a whirl on. I too do eyes first, so the worst that happens is I botch up a tiny part and have to scrub it off. 

What do you find most appealing about this method, most challenging, personally? 

 

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So, I haven't been painting in a while, but a long time ago I made a video specifically because this topic came up.

After a little blog necromancy, I found it,

 

This is a link to my blog that has a link to the youtube video. Fair warning, I don't have any kind of editing software, so it's just a raw video, but it has several tips/tricks if you're a visual person.

 

Hope this is helpful!

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6 hours ago, Cyradis said:

I'll have to give that method a shot, Pochi. My skepticism is in my ability to paint inside the lines (hence using the method I described). But more methods are better, so I'll have to find a figure to give it a whirl on. I too do eyes first, so the worst that happens is I botch up a tiny part and have to scrub it off. 

What do you find most appealing about this method, most challenging, personally? 

 

I guess what I find the most appealing is that when I pull it off, the eyes look really good! Most challenging...I am stubborn and will try to do all 6 steps even if they eyes are teeny weeny.

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But of course. What is the point in painting miniatures if we don't pain ourselves over every tiny detail? :) 

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