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Everything posted by Enchantra

  1. Something else besides interference paints that you might want to look into are texturizing media such as Liquitex puts out. They have media that add dimension, and texture to pieces. Another thing you may want to try is some stuff Delta Ceramcoat has out on the market that seems to be a seasonal item around where I work. It's fake snow and other glittery materials, that you can paint over or mix paint in with to create interesting shimmering and glittery effects along with more dimensional effects. :p
  2. Zap-a-gap??? What is that? I'm guessing some variety of glue? In using any adhesive it is usually a good idea to read the labeling first as some varieties of expoxies, glues cannot be used on foam, styrofoam, or other varieties of plastics for they will virtually eat through the plastic. If you do not understand what I mean, try placing a small puddle of 527 (An adhesive used in all sorts of things) onto a piece of styrofoam and peek at it now and then and you will see what I mean. It virtually MELTS the styrofoam and eats away at it.
  3. I suggest baking the sculpey piece and then attaching it to the mini AFTER baking. Pewter is one of those funny metals with a fairly low melting point. Pewter depending on the metals composing it and their relative ratios of composition can range in melting point from around 300 Farenheit to 600 or 700 Farenheit, give or take a few degrees either direction. My suggestion is leave the minis out of the oven for the sake of safety.
  4. Ok Now.. The cat is definately out of the bag now! *grin* I have a good idea who Enchantra really is... *grin* I won't say it because I believe her privacy is of the utmost importance but I must say I feel somewhat "honored" by her precence here. Thanks for joining in Enchantra and I look forward to picking your brain in the future! *in a nice sort of way of course!* Steve C. Hrm..... Should I be afraid???? And do I know you perhaps???? And yes, as you imply I do work with fur in some of my work. Who might you be? :cool:
  5. Some other decoration tips for those interested: Feathers: On some minis there are feathers or you may want to add some for detail and to enrich the look of a mini. Problem being mostly that feathers you buy in the store are to big, right? Well, here is what you can do. Buy feathers at the local craft store in the colors you desire. Now with a pair of scissors Carefully cut the feather to size needed, then glue it into place on the painted mni. Beads: Beadwork such as necklaces might be good to add on some minis. Beads can also be attached to staffs for decoration. Places like SHipwreck beads, firemountain gems, Michaels, JoAnn Fabrics and ther places have a wide selection of beads and you can put together almost anything with what they offer when it comes to small beaded necklaces or decoration. A brand name of beads called Mill Hill is quite nice. You can get nice even sized beads in smaller sizes than normal seed beads and while they are a bit pricey in my opinion, their effects are well worth it.
  6. You can modify minis in several ways. 1) Add pieces to the existing mini such as weapons slung over the back that only need to be glued in place - no cutting or drilling required. 2) Do the frankenstein. Swap parts from other minis. An arm here, a head there, and put together a completely new mini from existing parts. Some people just glue the pieces together and others use a pin to hold the pieces together with a drilled hole that the pin fits into in both pieces being joined. 3) My personal favorite. Remake the clothing using REAL FABRIC. All you need to do is wash the fabric first and allow it to dry, then what you can do is create a cape where there wasn't one and stiffen the fabric with clear acrylic gloss varnish after the mini is finished. Try it on the clothing of a mini too depending on the effect you want to create. 4) You can sculpt new things onto a mini using a self hardening putty, or make the piece using s clay such as sculpey or fimo the bake it and attach it after it has cooled and paint away!
  7. I read someplace that a vinegar and water solution would remove paint from some things. Bear in mind, Vinegar is acetic acid so I have no idea how it will interact with the metal of the minis. I also do not know if it can be used on minis because of it being acid. The place that I read this at did not give out that kind of information. My suggestion, try it first on a mini that you really don't care about or on a part of a broken mini or something like that.
  8. Alright, as an artist who lives in a family of artists and who has been creating stuff since birth practically I am going to add in my two cents here. Some artists are purists. Others are not. Let me start this by saying that the definition of what art is varies from person to person and from artist to artist. Art and its interpretations are HIGHLY subjective. So it does not suprise me that some artists also have different definitions of what they constitute as "cheating" and what falls under the category of "Legitimate art." These definitions range the spectrum of art style and are truly completely subjective in every way. I like to view myself as being a very open minded artist when it comes to viewng the techniques other artists have used. I grew up around a Father who hated modern art and thought is was not much more than paint thrown against a canvas and given some obscure name. Somehow I managed to escape believing the same thing and find myself viewing artwork my Father hates but I love because of its expression of individuality. Hence, I see no problem with the use of pens to do fine detail work. I think it is more or less a preference for whatever works better for that particular artist honestly. In some cases I use paintbrushes, but seeing that while in college I had chemical exposure and my hands now sometimes shake, I will sometimes use pens to get detail if I feel my hands can better work with that instrument. Sometimes I use 3-D paint with glitter in it on my minis. It not only adds dimension, but it adds a bit of character and a magical atmosphere to the mini itself. I do not constitute this as cheating, and oddly enough neither would my Father who as I stated above can be a hair closed minded on things. No matter how you view it the final product is an individual work of art, be it in using pens or using a paintbrush. That, is my two cents... :cool:
  9. My two cents on the Primer issue: So far I prefer a grey primer. I use Krylon. My Boyfriend has white primer that I use when I am visiting him. While I will use either one, I do find that grey works best for me at least. It is more of a personal preference. The bright colors are still bright and the dark colors are still dark. Sort of a halfway meeting point in a way for both ends of the spectrum of colors and their hue intensities.
  10. Here is another tip for making textures on minis... Have you ever heard of flocking? You can find this stuff at just about any craft store and around the Holidays you can get a wider variety of colors because it seems to be a popular seasonal item. Basically you find a flocking kit that is the same color as what you want the basecoat on your mini's clothes to be, and folowing the directions on the box, you apply the "glue" and the gently puff the flocking or fuzzy stuff onto the glue and allow it to dry. The result is a fuzzy almost fur like texture depending on the type and size of flocking used.
  11. Here is another scenery helper. A rather inexpensive clay to make consists of get this - glue and bread. Here is how to make it: Dice up some white bread that has had the crusts removed. Make the pieces around a half inch square. fill a small sized bowl with these, then, add some aleene's tacky glue, roughly about 1/4 bottle and begin to knead everything together. You may need to add mroe glue from time to time or more bread. At some point as the consistency starts to get closer to that of a slightly sticky dough, you can actually color this mixture using cheap acrylic paints. Just add a tablespoon of a paint for roughly every twp cups of dough, and knead this into it. This dough air dries well. Once dry if you would like tp paint it, use a coat of primer then paint using regular acrylic paints then put a sealant over it so moisture doesn't casue things to spoil. This clay does really good fine detail work. You are going to want to use some kind of armature for anything that stands upright or is quite large. Useful tip: Run out to your local Michaels, (I work there) as they are currently getting a lot of Chritmas stuff in and some of the floral stems that are out for Christmas will make nice boughs for trees or trees/shrubs for magical scenes. :p
  12. I have recently been building up scenery to go with the minis I am painting up for my Boyfriend as part of his Christmas gift. Here are some pointers for scenery: Paper mache and some forms of clay are well suited to miniature scenery. I make my own paper mache clay by taking roughly 6 large sheets of newsprint (I get the stuff without printing on it), and tear this into small one inch pieces and put into a large pot. Add enough water to cover all the paper by a couple inches and allow to come to a boil stirring now and then. At some point before it comes to a boil add about two tablespoons of bleach, and continue to stir, and let boil a few minutes. Take the paper and strain it in a colander and allow the water to drain out. Rinse the paper a bit and squeeze with your hands to get the water out. (leave some water in, it will be needed) and put a couple cups worth of the soaked paper into a food processor and blend on pulse for a minute or two till the mixture is fairly well pureed. Put this pureed paper into a bowl while you process the rest of the paper the same way. On a plastic surface such as a cutting board, knead into the paper glop, half a bottle of Aleene's tacky glue and flour, adding flour a half cup at a time and kneading continuously till the mixture is the consistency of a clay or dough. Place in a covered container in a fridge. Mixture will keep a couple weeks in the fridge and is good for the bases of scenery pieces. -You can also buy ready made "paper clay" at places such as Michaels Arts and Crafts. REmember when using paper mache to use some form of an armature on anything that is standing upright. Also always use a primer on paper mache before paitning it. Another variety of clay is flour salt and water clay. This is made simply by mixing roughly 3 cups of flour with about one cup of salt and then adding water and kneading till you get a good dough that no longer sticks to the hands. Some people will add coffee to this clay as a way of retarding mold growth, though just the salt works fine. After you use this clay, bake it in the oven at about 350 until the dough begins to turn a bit golden here and there. Afterwards, you may prime it and paint it, then make sure you use a good sealant on it, otherwise it will absorb moisture over time and the paint may flake off. Armatures are also good to remember when using this clay. Another good thing for scenery is floral picks. If you have ever walked into a craft store you will know what I am talking about. Some of the spring and Christmas picks and even some of the regular floral stems when cut apart lend themselves well to making trees and shrubs to go along with other scenery. Bear in mind a lot of this is seasonal merchandise so you are going to ahve to be watchful of when the stuff comes into the stores.
  13. Something you may want to keep in Mind Michael is that when doing the plaid with the tulle, limit yourself two only two or three colors. It you want to do more colors you may want to consider doing the other colors with a small paintbrush. I am finding that a lot of paiting techniques I have used in other art forms over the years are vastly well adapted to miniature painting too, and hence after I try them I will post a few more from time to time. You had a post in another forum here dealing with interference paint. I find the stuff to be relatively expensive and instead go for paints such as Folk Art or Americana who have metallic colors that can be thinned with water to do a glazing effect. Some of them have a pearlescent medium that can be applied on its own over a color to add metallic/pearl effects, or it can be mixed with the colors to provide a wide range of metallic/pearlescent colors. Most craft stores sell these paints. Delta Ceramcoat also sells pearlescent mediums. (I currently work in a craft store so finding different paints is easy for me, as is finding stuff to make miniature scenery with. Not to mention, if anyone ever comes across any nice position where my MA in Sociocultural Anthropology is useful, let me know, I refuse to work retail the rest of my life.)
  14. I am not sure how many of you have ever done sponge painting before. It is not a technique that is just limited to walls and large objects. Happily I found that if you use a smaller brush whose bristles are worn, or a tiny piece of fine grade sponge stuck to some sort of stick/paintbrush handle, it works wonders on minis for painting fabric. For velvet/crushed velvet: The trick is to put on the base coat of the color you desire, then very randomly sponge over this LIGHTLY with soft touches of the sponge in varying shades of the same color. Bear in mind that each of these shades has to be relatively close to the original shade of paint. You can build up several layers of sponge painting with various shades either darker or lighter to get the desired effect. This same technique also works for the grass on the base of minis to add definition to the premolded grass on the bases. For Netting/checkered designs: Get a small piece of Tulle (Sold at places like Michaels, JoAnn Fabrics, ACMoore,etc..). Apply your base color then lay the tulle over the area to be painted and depedning on the effect desired either paint directly over the tulle, then pull it off to expose the desigh, or gently sponge color here and there over the tulle to give more of a woven effect kid of look to the piece. This works quite well when doing plaid as long as you keep your color placement in mind and know which layers should go first or last. For displaying chacters: Some people dislike the fact that the bottoms of minis can scratch surfaces. Depending on where you are gaming and how nice you want your minis to look, try gluing felt to the bottoms of the minis to act as a protectant against scratching diningroom/kitchen tables/shelves. Bows and Arrows: Fine guage jewlery/beading wire works wonders as the wire on a bow. Some minis have a bow but no wire on it. The guage that is good to use is either 32, 34, or 36 depending on mini size. Sewing thread that have been tied onto the bow and then stiffen with either paint or sealant also works well. Metal: You can find false leafing products at most craft stores. The instructions for leafing are on the packages. Leafing can work well on swords and shields. That is my two cents on stuff for the day :) :laugh:
  15. A few months ago I started painting minis for my boyfriend who plays Dungeons and Dragons. Well I have found paitning these pieces of metal to be addicting. As his Christmas gift I am painting him up a large bunch of minis. I read the stuff on the website about painting minis, but I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions outside of what is posted on the site that could be useful in detailing minis to a greater extent, and making them look more lifelike. Thanks :) :)
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