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Bones Supporter
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Posts posted by Nissiana

  1. Lovely work, and glad you're feeling better! The stronger highlights are really working on the breastplate, and her left leg especially is really reading well. If I had any critique, it would be that in these photos, her cheekbones look as reflective/shiny as the armor now, but I'd guess that it's not that case in the hand.

    • Like 2
  2. I went over and took a look at your Kurff WIP, Kharsin.  I feel your frustration on Kurff.  I have a mini here that I call "Eric the ugly Pirate" who also suffers from a mis-cast/facial deformity - and ultimately, I came to the same decision, which was to just call him done already.  There are some things paint can't fix (and I'm not enough of a greenstuff wizard yet to resculpt things as delicate as faces).  


    I've got a...significant...shelf of shame.  Lots of things waiting for basing, or various amounts of paint.  One of the things I'm hoping to do this summer (and there are many things on that list) is to start clearing things off of that shelf.  It's tough, because summer is usually the busiest time of year for me, but I'm trying to work in some painting whenever I can.  I find the more things I can call "done" and cross off the list, the more excited I am to get back to the paint table, so I'm trying to generate some positive momentum.  


    Cash - I remember that cave girl! I'd love to see her finished up.  One of these days I'll get started on the one Bombshell model Sanael has said I can paint, but she's pretty far deep in my queue. 

    • Like 3
  3. Thanks for the cheering section.  I have to admit, without the encouragement, I might have given up after the earlier frustration - especially after how nice the fabric looked right before I put the design back in.


    Yes that freehand is coming along awesomely! I must admit that I'm intimidated to do freehand as it takes so long for me to just get the highlights right! LOL! Great work on the cloak and I can't wait to see the finished piece!


    I've felt that way for a looong time myself. I've always been afraid to "ruin" all the hard work I've already put in.  One thing this process has taught me is that it's OK to mess up!  It's only paint, and if I got it to a point I liked in the first place, I'm pretty confident I get it there again if I go astray.  ::):

    • Like 5
  4. Made some nice progress on the cloak today, even if the photos aren't doing so well for me.  I've been using my phone's camera for the WIP shots - and while it's done some nice miniature photos for me in the past, they're a little off the past several times I've tried it.  Maybe I need to noodle around with the settings and see where things went awry, but I don't recall changing anything recently.


    At any rate, the session started with a little bit of cleanup on the design:




    I could have spent a ton of hours doing more fine-tuning here, but I feel like my lesson learned right now is to take my time with laying in the initial design, and fix it as I go then.  Also, my brushes are due for some deep cleaning to help restore some points so I can put the designs down more finely in the first place - they're all bathing in some W&N brush restorer tonight.


    And then, with a very light hand and some patient thin glazes, some midtone over the whole thing, some shadows, and the highlights:




    The whole cloak looks smoother in the hand, and at tabletop distance, this design rocks.  I'm actually happy I re-did it at this point, and I'm pretty confident that my next attempt at this sort of thing will yield better results.  Going back and re-doing the process, while a bit annoying, has been very educational.


    I also spent some time going in and touching up the ends of her hair that got tinted with green through the process, and fiddled with her face a bit.  She's very nearly done at this point, and I'm happy to be in the home stretch!


    • Like 15
  5. Thanks for the words of encouragement, everyone!  I finally managed to get some time in on her today.  My photos are a little sub-par, but they'll give you an idea of what I accomplished in tonight's painting session.


    Firstly, I worked on smoothing out the colors.  Ultimately, this blending is a little on the rough side, but I anticipate going back in with some glazes after putting the freehand design back in, so I'm not overly concerned with it at this point.




    Then I doodled a bit on my blotter, trying to figure out a design that I like for this character.




    And then, deja vu all over again - the new design is roughed in:




    It's a bit baroque, which is appropriate for elven royalty, I suppose.  Next I'll try to clean up the design a bit, but that will have to wait for another painting session - this was a good place to stop for the night.

    • Like 9
  6. Thanks for the encouragement!  Corporea, that's pretty much the feel that I'm going for.  It's ambitious since this is my first try at something like this, but I do think it's achievable - I've gotten it close enough that I don't want to give up on it.  I was just hoping to arrive at the finish line sooner than I actually will on this model :)  So many projects, so little time!


    I probably will try to use a bit of the underlying pattern if I can, but since I wasn't entirely happy with it in the first place, I might start it over from scratch.  I think it'll probably wind up being about the same amount of time, either way I go about it.


    Hopefully I'll be able to put some time in again tomorrow, if all else on my schedule goes according to plan.

    • Like 5
  7. Some days it just doesn't pay to sit at the paint table. This morning I thought I'd put a few rounds of highlights in and tweak the shadows a bit to bump up the contrast. Adding a bit of red to the shadows was as working nicely (thanks, ub3r!), so I started in on the highlights.

    And they went super chalky. Enough so that it was the main thing Sanael commented on when he took a peek at it. So much for hoping to be done soon....I started glazing back in the midtone, and realized I'm losing too much of the design to salvage it.

    Here she is, with the left side in the attempted smoothing glaze, and the right in chalky highlights:


    So, after several more overall applications of the midtone, I have a mottled green cloak. Left the table with no small amount of frustration: I've had so little time to paint in the past month that I'm really irked by the setback.


    Not only am I no closer to being done with this cloak, it's going to take a good bit of work to get it looking passable, thanks to the mess underneath. And there for a while I really liked where it was headed, too. :(


    *Edited to fix photo scale

    • Like 8
  8. Thanks, everyone.  I've got a soft spot for dwarves myself, even though I don't paint them up very often.  The first long-term character I played in a D&D game was a dwarven fighter with a wicked warhammer.  He'll be getting his glamour shots later this afternoon so he can strut on over to Show-off.


    On to the next!  I've opted to swipe one off the shelf and get her finished up. Especially since she's already made a few trips down to the game table...the perks of painting up NPCs for an ongoing campaign.  Sometimes they're not quite finished before you need them!


    So the mini in question is DarkSword's "Female mage/druid with staff."  She's representing an elven princess that the party has been dealing with in the DragonLance campaign, with inspiration for the color scheme coming from this source artwork by Larry Elmore:




    She was SO CLOSE to being done when I figured this model was a good choice to practice some freehand on.  Got the border of the cloak done, liked it, and then decided to go for broke on a heavily brocaded fabric for the rest of the cloak.  This is where I stopped:




    I did a pretty heavy-handed application of random swirly bits, panicked that I'd ruined the cloak and would need to repaint it, and stopped.  Here begins my attempt at recovery.  I figure, in the worst case scenario, I'll wind up painting over it anyway, so why not attempt to salvage a bit in the meantime?


    I started off by glazing the midtone (Christmas Wreath) over the whole mess:




    That seemed to help a bit, so moving on to putting some shadows (Peacock Green) back into the folds of the cloak.  My front pictures started getting too blurry at this point, so only back view for now:




    So far, so good.  I timidly started to try highlighting the folds again (a little Tusk Ivory in the Christmas Wreath), and here's where the painting session stopped.




    I'm having some mixed feelings on what I'm seeing in the photos so far.  The original "pattern" has been softened to a point where I could certainly live with it.  I'm pretty sure if I continue to push the highlights, I'll lose the look of the freehand under those subsequent layers.  


    I'm on the fence on how to proceed at this point.  Continue just overpainting the whole thing and perhaps try again with a different pattern, or go ahead and highlight as normal and try to figure out how to keep the appearance of green-on-green stitching?  


    What do y'all think?

    • Like 18
  9. Thanks, MonkeySloth!  I think those are my two favorite things that I accomplished on this guy.


    So, for him to move on to the game table, he needs a base - I mentioned quick and dirty before, and right now for me it doesn't get much quicker than a texture-stamp base.




    This is one of the Happy Seppuku stamps - and I'm delighted with how easy they are to use.  My base-fu needs some serious work.  After pressing the texture into the putty, I jammed Dain's feet-pins into the putty so I'd have an easy time of putting him on the base later.


    I let the putty cure overnight, and then drilled the holes a bit further into the base.  A quick round of paint later, and the base is good enough for me:




    I used colors that had already been used on Dain, so hopefully the base looks like it belongs with him:




    A round of sealer, and he'll be off to fight bad guys (or good guys, depending on who's hired him that day)!

    • Like 15
  10. I'm quite familiar with the, ahem, posterior-point of the paint process. Invariably, everything I paint arrives at the point where I throw up my hands, say, "This mini looks like..." and walk away. When I calm down and come back to it, things usually start to improve from there :)

    • Like 7
  11. As hoped, I was able to put in about another hour of work finessing fiddly bits (like the eyes) and and working on touching up highlights and shading.  This is a dangerous rabbit hole, and one I know I could easily spend a lot more time in.


    But - this guy is destined to be a mook, a learning model, and a speedpaint (of sorts, for me).  I have him in metal as well, so one day that version will get a finesse job and be a proud representative of a character.


    Here's where he stands as of now: 



    While I could spend a good bit more time fussing with the metallics, I feel I've learned what I set out to learn on this guy.  I became a bit more familiar with the "shaded basecoat" technique, and can see that there's some definite merit in it, but it's quite different from my usual painstaking layering approach.  Playing with a limited palette and mixing colors on the fly gave me some mixed results - I love the richness of his beard colors, but I feel like the rest of the model is a little "dingy."  Ok for an adventuring dwarf, but I probably need to pick some more vibrant colors the next time I start out if I want some truly rich jewel tones.   Working the yellow that I chose into the greens and into his beard went a long way toward brightening him up, so I'll be saving that trick for future use.


    He'll be getting a quick and dirty base, because I'm ready to move on to the next thing.  Not quite sure what that is yet - I'm torn between grabbing something off the shelf that's nearly done and finishing it quickly, or starting a new piece.  

    • Like 12
  12. Not a coffee drinker here, but I love teas and herbal infusions.  I have a dear friend who runs a tea shop, and sometimes he lets me try his new creations - I had an almond-lavender iced tea there yesterday which was delightful.


    My favorite sore-throat remedy is peppermint tea with lemon and honey.  I picked up some local clover honey last fall at the renaissance festival here, and it's been doing lovely service in my tea all year.  Now that the weather is warm, I go to iced teas more frequently - a nice black iced tea with a sprig of fresh mint is one of my favorite summertime beverages.

    • Like 3
  13. As a matter of fact, I do!  It was a lecture-based class, where we spent a lot of time looking at samples of lighting both in classical artwork and at photos of painted miniatures.  She's got a background in theater as a set and costume designer, so she talked at length about using light to tell a story and direct the viewer's eye.  Very much based in theory - and I grooved on it a lot!


    We didn't talk much about color selection specifics, more about applications of the color wheel - the closer colors are to each other on the wheel, the easier it is to pull off the lighting effect (for example, highlighting blue with thin layers of yellow will get you green, rather than the glow you're going for).  She did say that she will tend to paint the model fully first and then add in the OSL lighting effects.  I took Lazlo's OSL class last year, and he paints the lighting as he goes - so YMMV, as the order of events is clearly a matter of personal choice.  They both recommend doing a reference photo of the model with a strong light source from the direction you want the light coming from (so for example, turn out the lights, light a match next to the model, and take a photo).


    I really recommend checking out some of her paint work on CMON (artist name "victoria").  Some really classic pieces, and they show off some of the things she's talking about quite well.  The paintjobs hold up well, even though some of them are more than 10 years ago at this point.


    I'll follow along on your paint up of this guy and chime in as I see things!

    • Like 7
  14. I'm provably going to paint the sword like normal first and then glaze a blue over that, highlight in a brighter blue and figure out the lighting from there. With the torch, I need to examine some references. I swear I've seen this mini painted before somewhere but for the life of me, I cannot remember where.


    My guess is that you saw the picture in Victoria Lamb's OSL class - I took one of those sessions and she did go over her step-by-step process of painting up this guy, with photo references.  Unfortunately, my google-fu is not turning up any pictures of this guy.  I think he might be a limited-edition model, since I seem to recall her saying something about him only being available at that class! 

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