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Everything posted by Corporea

  1. I use a warm white generally when I paint. I start by base coating in golden highlight. I then highlight up through creamy ivory, linen white all the way to pure white. I will often add a faint hint of some driftwood brown for my deep shadows. The key with white is to make most of it white- in this case linen white, and also to consider using a dark contrasting color adjacent to the white area. Something very dark nearby will make the white look whiter. Hope that helps!
  2. This time I planned! I took pictures of the process! Go me! Ahem. What I mean is, I decided that since most mehndi is repeated on both arms... I'd need to copy my original design to the other hand. The good news is, much of the arm is covered. Hah hah! So above is arm number one for reference. It's a good idea to look at your reference model because I'd forgotten how many petals I put on the central flower and had to restart. Sigh. Eight petals. Yup. I started by making a dot in the center, then filled in the center dot with flesh color. It's easier than drawing a thin circle. I cleaned up the pattern and added a lighter ring of flesh around it. Her skin is darker on this hand, so I had to lighten it up to add contrast. Then I drew a thin circle and set up my quadrants for the next layer. Argh. Blurry but you can see the progress for the pattern. More dots and another circle. And a scalloped border. Then I copied a bit of the arm pattern where it would show past the braid. There we go! I attached her arm finally and attached Mr Owl, but I haven't taken a picture of that yet since the greenstuff was still drying. I'll get that uploaded soon.
  3. ok, still covered in glitter, but I managed to get some work done on the base: I attached Mr Kitty so at least one of the party is ready for the "Afterparty" Just think of all the gold we get to divvy up! To share a bit of the process, when I think about OSl, a way to sell the effect is to use surroundings, rather than just what you can paint on the mini. While his staff would look lighter, the rock wall behind him helps compound the effect. I find miniatures in isolation work less well from an OSL standpoint than those with scenery. It's a cheat, but use it and it will help you!
  4. I have been totally distracted by making a fun base for the group project, but I managed to squeeze in a little Bust time. First, I disliked the way the hand pattern came out, so I spent this afternoon redoing it. I coated the hand in my skintone, and highlighted a bit, then re-painted the henna. I'm happier now. Just like Talespinner says never fear the scalpel- never be afraid to redo something that's off. I also worked on the arms and the belt thingy. I think I'll attach the arm soon, but I may stare at it a bit longer just in case I feel like I can't reach something important. Whew. This weekend has been serious painting fun!
  5. apoxie sculpt is my new best friend! I glued the cork together, then put a thin layer of apoxie on the sides. Then I just took a piece of cork and tore the edges so it was irregular, and used it to make the stone-like texture. Last I formed the stone edges with a narrow wax sculpting tool. I used a thicker tool because I figured these were more massive stones. The only down side to this project is now I am finding glitter everywhere.
  6. Yeah, I'm going to have to cut back on things I wanted to bring as well just because life gets in the way. I also have too many hobbies, and splitting my time between them makes them all suffer. Just keep having fun with it. Some of the most fun I have painting is when I just kick back and experiment with something and don't sweat the results. When I get focused on the competition aspect of it, it feels more like work and less like something I want to do. While there is something to be said for forcing work and making progress through the grind, it sounds like that's not what you need right now. If it's a hobby, it should be fun. I have no real aspiration to be "professional" at painting since I already have a day job. I want to keep loving it. I hope that painting stays fun for you, too. But yeah- kill the inner editor. I learned that doing NaNo the last 5 years. Don't stop and fix things, just keep pouring out words (or paint.) Otherwise I get nowhere.
  7. Go read this when not at work as the language is an issue. Substitute paint, painter and painting for anything related to writing. I have faith in you. Also, Tre's stuff is so fun to paint!
  8. Sorry to sneak in and place a response when I haven't actually painted on this lady, but I was reading a blog post by Chuck Wendig and felt a need to apply it to painting over here. I thought it might help. Warning- Chuck is, er, indiscriminate in his use of language, so maybe NSFW. (One of my hobbies is writing, so I follow some of the writing blogs from time to time.) This post on self-rejection definitely hits home for me when it comes to writing, because I am a thin-skinned wimp and always have a hard time when I do something that is less than perfect. But, it applies to painting as well. Sometimes when we paint, we look at those so much farther ahead of us and feel like we can never achieve that level of awesomesauce. I know I look at the Masters, be they miniature painters or in the world of fine art, and cringe when I think about where I am on the curve. And I acknowledge that I have skill in painting and have a learned a lot over the years. I still keep my first mini to remind me that things have changed. I keep all my minis I don't gift away, because they are a physical manifestation of my progress when I feel down. I always judge myself harshly. I think we all do. And sometimes, we let the beautiful things we could do die before we even apply the brush. We give up, or move on to another project, or fail to push past the barriers we erect inside. We give up on ourselves. We can't fail if we don't even try, right? It's at this point I hear that cursed "I hope you dance" song in my head. Sorry for the earwig. At any rate, this is me posting to give a big group hug to all my fellow painters out there who've had a hard time shaking the voices in our heads that are trying to hold us back. We can do it! Even if we're not perfect, we're still awesome and we can do amazing things! And the things we paint make us stronger and better, and we learn from everything, even our mistakes. We are fantastic creatures capable of miracles, so let's not hold ourselves back. Goodness knows I've had a lot of projects that fell short of my expectations. But when I forced myself to keep going, even in the face of certain failure, I muddled through. And the result, while not perfect, was acceptable. In the end, I learned something and leveled up. Let's slay some dragons, Team Reaper! Bring on the XP! (Also, I promise to work on this bust this weekend barring crazy real-life-work madness.)
  9. Still working. I've been splitting my time between a few projects and real life, but I have to finish this before Reapercon! I want to finish the bird at least enough to attach him to her shoulder. In order to feel ready to attach, he has to be mostly done on the hidden side and I have to finish her hair and skin on that side. I like waiting to attach bits on minis when it makes it easier to paint hidden things. So, I'm doing an eagle owl. I googled a bunch of photos, and found several that helped me do the wings. I like looking at what I want to copy to get a sense of it. Observing nature really helps me learn how best to paint it. When I cheat and make things up, it doesn't look as good. It's worth taking the time to do the research. There's a huge range of patterning and colors on these guys, so as long as it looks pretty owl-like I think I'm ok. I start by blocking in the basic colors. I do some basic shading on the individual feathers. Then I can block in the barring on the wings. Something like this. Still figuring out where the colors fit. I do the same thing on the other side. And then I block in the barring on the body and other wing. This is the side that needs to be the most done, as it will nest against her shoulder. Of note, I'm still using the same color I used on Athena, minus the mahogany brown. I'm hoping this will help them meld together. Their eyes I want to more or less be the same because I think it will be a cool effect. Maybe she sees through her bird's eyes? Ok, more soon!
  10. Just as a fun historical aside, the Las Meninas painting above shows two old school "photobombs" long before they were popular! Who is the mysterious gentleman in the doorway?! Why did Velazquez paint him there? I mean, in photos, people can jump in, but in painting it's deliberate, right? Also, who're the couple in the mirror in the back? Questions, questions- fortunately wikipedia can answer them, but it's cool to see an artist putting in easter eggs. I love this painting for the questions it raises, even more than Velazquez's style. It's an awesome work in composition. Which reminds me- while studying, look at the way the artists arrange objects and figures to convey story. This is a good exercise in planning dioramas and such. I'm glad you're having fun with it!!
  11. I was going to ask how you kept your desk so clean... but you cheated and sent the pre-work photo! Beautiful work!!!
  12. Here's my loot from the awesome SGHawkins09: I've never seen the paintable Bob Ross before, but he's probably going to have to go in my queue soon. The real debate is should I paint him like Bob Ross... or paint him like a Bob Ross painting... hmmmn... I see some happy trees in my future! Thank you again so very much, Kaitlyn!
  13. I blame my slacker status on two separate back to back winter plagues. I'm feeling better now though, so here's me trying to catch up. Still working! Thanks for posting this Ian! I may mostly paint him then work on his OSL staff effect late in the game.
  14. I tried the Kimera paints while visiting the awesome Wren this past weekend. I liked them. I also like the acrylic gouache from liquitex she has as well. They both mix well and are matte. The consistency is similar to the golden fluid acrylics, less thick than heavy body paint. I just ordered some atelier cadmiums I'm going to try next week, since they are actually the cadmium pigment and I'd like to try them out. I think what I might do with the scalecolor ones is pick up a few from reapercon if they bring them, so I can play with them. If not this year than next. Or maybe pick a single set to play with through the kickstarter. One thing I've learned in mixing paint, is that it's really nice to have a few key secondary colors. For those staying in the kickstarter, trust me when I say you can mix most things- especially skin colors from primaries; but what's really hard to get are high chroma purples and greens. If you've ever played with mixing, those will be the shades you'll struggle to replicate. I've not had as much trouble with oranges as the other two secondaries. If I were choosing by number, I'd get: 23,24,25, 30, 32, 34 ... and 19,20 because I can never get enough ochers, though that's just me and my obsession with making yellow more friendly. Then if you wanted to mix almost all the others, pick 3,4,5. Rather than going with the plain black and white to round mixing off, I'd probably go with 41 and 43, but I already have plenty of titanium white- it's a very cold white, and their pastel white reminds me of lead white, which we don't have our current painting era. As a rule I don't like plain black and white as they tend to look flat, so if you get 1,2 then make sure you add a hint of something else to them while painting.
  15. yes, I will totally bring him to reaper! he's awesome!! The wood pattern is lovely. I really like that effect! You did a beautiful job on the ribbon shadowing, too! Thank you so much! He's sitting on my special shelf of coolness! squeee!!!!
  16. so... weird. Having used tube acrylics, I'd just buy standard golden or liquitex acrylics if I wanted to paint canvas. Since they're in much larger tubes anyway. But I use completely different paint to paint canvas than I do minis. The consistency they're talking about on these is that of standard artist acrylics, where you want your brushstrokes to show, and where texture is built up through much thicker layers rather than our more watercolor-like techniques. All these mean to me is thinning the paint more. I suppose it's good in that the small tube will stretch a long way, but I'd just as soon buy a set from dick blick of golden heavy body acrylics and get my free domestic shipping... I'm sure these are fine quality, but seem oddly unsuited to mini painting. I couldn't see from the photos on the page, but does anyone know if they're listing their pigment information on each tube? That's something I like in artist acrylics so I know if I'm actually getting a cadmium, cobalt, etc, or just something similar to it. Pure pigment is much more fun to mix and behaves in a much more standard fashion.
  17. OMG! Kaitlyn, my secret sophie is amazing!!!! I took a pic and need to upload it, but thank you thank you thank you!! Also- do you want me to bring it to reapercon for the mousling category?
  18. oooh! Colors! I love him!!! Nice red. Good choice. Ok... what I'd do is test it out. I use my hoard of bones and attack them with each option when I play with color. Based on the colors you've used, you could even use a purple- something like carnival purple. I'm thinking deep ocean might be better, but I'd probably test it first. You could try glazing the blue of choice on the underside, or just using it in your deepest shadows. Also something to think about is iridescence (I think that's the right word.) I think I have it... ah: Sorry for bad pic, but my dead hard drive took all my old pics a few years back and I gave the mini away. I used the blue here as a reflective light for the brown scales from the foliage. That's another alternative for the underside. It can add interest to a shadowed area. You could even use a dark green like peacock for your basilisk. A dark green would look pretty. Acutally... the more I look at mr basilisk the more I think green... hmmn. must percolate more. Also consider, and call me crazy, but you can highlight your yellow spines with a purple white- which one is the purple? spectral maybe? I think it's spectral. At any rate, using your complementary in pastel as a highlight might look fun, as opposed to using a linen as a warm yellow white. Just thinking. Again- I test those things before I apply them. Just in case. For fun and information: the way I learned the cool teal glazing technique was with acrylic on canvas. You paint in cadmiums, do most of your shading and highlighting, then mix the pthalo blue shade with a matte acrylic medium to extend it (and make it more transparent) and then slather it on, covering everything more or less equally. Admittedly, this does not lend itself to miniature painting, since you're trying to get brushstrokes and imperfections to make the texture more interesting. I like using it in terrain- like the example I sent you, because it can be a messy technique.
  19. Awww! Hugs! Yeah- I like that color combo. Nice work on the patterning. Looks very natural. You can do it!!!
  20. wait, have you not heard of how we travel in packs when out for dinner to the restroom? So freckles are a little different than what I'm going to do with the henna. Henna is applied to the epidermis (outer skin) surface. It is a stain of the skin, like writing on oneself with marker, and fades as the top skin sheds. Freckles live deeper in the layer: Here's a fancy chart on some common skin markings. The key I see with freckles, or tattoos which are also deeper, is to glaze over them with more skin layers. Here's where the tattoo lives: So see how there's a bunch of stuff above the mark? What I do with skin markings is to nearly finish the skin in terms of blending and smoothness, then add my blemishes or markings, then glaze over them a few time with my skin midtone. That way, they fade into the skin and become a part of it. If they end up fading too much, just touch them up. There is often a lot of back and forth with skin markings. Also, I do a lot of google research on placement of freckles. While they can be anywhere, looking at actual examples can help them seem more natural from a pattern standpoint. Colorwise- I tend to use a darker shade of my skin or my darkest miniature shadow color mixed with my skintone. I tend to use a lot of colors not labeled as skin when I paint skin, so I don't have recipe for every skintone, but I might use my walnut brown like I did for the henna with this miniature. I know I did a redhead with freckles where my shadow color was something like burgandy wine, and I used that for my freckles. It doesn't have to be a brown. You can see how varied the colors of moles/freckles are in the first picture. I look at moles a lot at work, and I've seen so many colors. It's more what blends well with your color scheme. Then again, I do not always paint "realistically." My color choices are based more on mood- more expressionist or impressionist, so I do what makes me happy and looks pretty or conveys the emotion I want.
  21. almost everything I paint is: ugly, ugly, ugly, better, more better...done, whew, thank God! I'm not sure that gets any easier with practice and time, since as I practice more and level up, my eye sees even more things I need to fix. I say this is not to be discouraging. Just know we all still go through the frustration of the painting process. I agree- never give up on a project as you never know how far you can take it! And another tip I use when skin gets bumpy is to take some brush on sealer and place a nice layer or fill in holes- it will be transparent/at worst slightly translucent and it can help to smooth out the bumpies. Then go back over everything with a thin glaze and it can help both smooth and blend a problematic area. PM me when you get started on your wip and as long as work isn't too crazy I can help troubleshoot!
  22. One of the reasons I like WIPs is because they show the ugly adolescent stage of painting. So many of the things we look at online are the result of 20-100 hours of work, and they stun us with their perfection. I like muddling through the tough stages where everyone can see- although I'm guilty of getting in a groove and forgetting to take in progress pics often. I blame the background music. But, the idea is seeing the trial and error, the layers as they go and the overall process. I find that more helpful, though there are things I can't really demo in photos like how to unload a brush, how thin the paint should be and suchlike. It makes me wonder if I ought to teach either a basic skin class for beginners or a basic brush use type class that would go over all the gory details we forget to mention when we're painting. We don't do it on purpose. We just don't always think about it consciously.
  23. next step in the grand scheme of converting this bust over into the eastern side of wisdom is to change the type of owl. The original appears to be sculpted as a barn owl. I like barn owls, but I want to do something different. I went on a google search and decided I like the look of the Eurasian eagle owl. He has tufts! I like tufts. Sadly, the sculpt does not come with tufts. let's fix that! I mixed up some green stuff and changed the shape of his brows first. To steal a line from Toy Story 2, I'm packing his angry eyes! Next, I added the tufts. It seemed like to small an area to pin and wire, so hopefully they won't be too droopy. And here he is basecoated with similar colors to Athena. I'll need to darken him a bit and add all the barring once he's more polished. He also has the olive skin and walnut brown, which hopefully will tie the two together. See y'all soon!
  24. Wow, this was a long hiatus! I'm back. I'll try to update more frequently, but I'm juggling a few projects right now. First, I decided to work on the cloth some. And the arms. I hadn't put more than a basecoat on the free arm, so I added a few highlights to get a feel for it: Notice how the tone of the skin is different than the face? I haven't glazed the yellow into it yet. That's something to consider if you're glazing. Just remember to add it evenly to each aspect of the skin, either piecemeal as you go, or all at the end. Since I took such a long break, I'll have to make sure all my skin matches up at the end. Then I did some highlighting to the cloth: What I did above was highlight from olive skin and palomino gold up through sun yellow to a hint of linen white. Then I glazed the orange phase yellow over it. Notice how it smoothed out the transitions, but it also knocked down the highlights. Depending on how much you glaze, you may have to over-highlight to end up with the contrast you need. Alternatively, you can go back and re-add the highlights and shadows afterwards. But see how pretty and rich that yellow is! Yum! I love a good yellow. And, it's the same glaze I use on the skin, so it ties the miniature together. Here I've gone back and picked up my highlights, keeping the rich yellow color overall. I guess a key for yellow is ochers. Using something like olive or palomino gold- which are basically yellows with some green in them, gives a lower value while still staying in the yellow family. I sometimes use chestnut gold as well. Anything warm brown but not too red or you risk going orange. While I love paint, orange is my least favorite color. Anyway... Next: pattern! I have to throw in some freehand or I don't feel like I'm doing the amount of space I have justice. I wanted it to sort of look like a sari, so I did a bunch of research and finally decided to make a zig-zaggy fancy pattern. So I started with a simple dark band. Added some triangles. Lots of triangles. Sigh. More triangles. Started questioning my sanity. Ahhh. A fancy looking pattern, but made of simple shapes. I learned that from Jess Rich. Take her freehand class, she rocks. And I added a bit more for good measure to make it look more embroidered. I still have to clean it up, but that's the general idea. Of course, my arm will cover most of it... sigh. But here you can see a more polished arm before and after the yellow glaze. See the difference? Ok, then I decided to go a little crazy. All these months I've been puttering around and thinking about how to introduce more freehand. Mainly because i like the challenge. Should I embroider the heck out of the cloth? Nah. It's such a pretty yellow, I wanted to keep it. But, since I'm using a Bangladeshi skintone, maybe I could do... henna! Yes! Whooo! I get to play with tattoos! Squee! Ahem. I did a lot more research, then buckled down and applied it. I wanted something like a sun shape on the back of the hand. I know most mehndi is on the palms, but this bust's palms are hidden, so I'll cheat a bit. The key to design is start simple and then complicate. Also, thin thin thin the paint. Better to be able to paint over a thin line than a big goopy one where you risk having to sand layers away. Also, huh- I'm super pink compared to my painted skintone. I may need some more mahogany in a glaze on this lady later on. And I forgot to take in progress photos again. I'm not happy with my sun shape and I think I'm going to scrap it and come up with something different. But I am happy with my little flowers. You can see where I've touched up the skin in places from stray lines. what I'll do next is finish the pattern to satisfaction, then glaze a bunch over it to smooth out the skin. I'll have to pick out the lines again, but it will help the pattern blend in a bit better. Here's where we stand at the moment. Ok- gotta go grab some dinner, but I hope to have more soon. As always, let me know if you have questions!
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