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i'm really befuddled with some mini painting terms. like uhh. Blacklining, NMM technique, paint thinning etc.


And, whats a fast way to improve on painting minis? not that im impatient or something, just curious. Whats the BEST way to improve on painting minis?

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Hi, welcome to the boards. :poke:


If you do a search on any of those terms on this board you'll come up with some great threads that drop some real science. Also, www.paintingclinic.com has great intro articles that explain just about everything.


Regarding the "best" way to go, I'd recommend thinning your paints (future floor wax or search for "gunk"), using good brushes (Vallejo comes to mind), good paints (Reaper masters series) and good lighting for starters. Research everything hardcore as all the info you may ever need is already on the web somewhere... here's a good place to start, probably spend a few years here and never finish:


1035 hand picked miniatures links


Good luck.

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Thanks for the help!


I think it'll be some time before i understand the painting gab lol ^_^.


I paint outside during noon, i think the sunlight reflects well off the pewter and the natural suroundings are peaceful. I keep the minis sheltered overnight so they can dry off. The paint sticks on better if you dry it outside overnight in my opinion.

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i think the sunlight reflects well off the pewter

My first recommendation is to prime your minis. Primer is formulated with "tooth", which is the characteristic that allows it to hold better to pewter. Normal paint won't do this as well as a good primer, though a paint that has good surface tension and a solid shell when dry (you can do a forum search for Gunze) will do fine.


Second is to thin your paints. Better to put down two thin coats than one thick one; better control, and a smoother finish.


Third is that they shouldn't need overnight to dry, unless you are thinning them with a drying retarder. If it takes more than 30 minutes (for unmodified acrylics at least) there is either something wrong or you are using too thick of a layer.


Fourth would be to disregard 1-3 if they don't synch with your painting style. If you enjoy it and are happy with the result, then you are doing it perfectly.

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i think the sunlight reflects well off the pewter and the natural suroundings are peaceful. I keep the minis sheltered overnight so they can dry off. The paint sticks on better if you dry it outside overnight in my opinion.

Hi- welcome to the boards! This is a teriffic place to get information on painting minis and critique on your work.


Darkstar has some awesome links listed, and I would agree that thinning your paints is really important. I would also recommend Jenova's tutorials- they're excellent. She has tutorails on blacklining and NMM as well as tattoos and bases and skintones. It's a great place to start. Jester also has great tutorials -he uses some very advanced techniques, but he shows step by step how he primes and bases his minis.


Blacklining is painting a black line between different areas to make them stand out from each other.


NMM is non-metallic metal. That means you paint things to look like metal with regular non metallic paints. It's tricky- a pretty advanced technique.


You said in your latest post that "the sunlight reflects well off the pewter". That could be the biggest way to improve your mini painting. If you're not, prime your minis. There's lots of primer out there, and some people use an air brush. Most people prime in black or white but it's up to you. I like to use Krylon white primer. I can get the Krylon at the hardware store. Make sure you are using primer, not just spray paint. The primer is formulated to stick to metal. Your paint will stick to the primer, not slide off the pewter of the mini.


Also, I'd recommend using paints that are formulated for mini painting~ like the Reaper Master Series paints. You can also use acrylics. Don't use enamels (like Testors) for these techniques.


Hope this helps!



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Let It Flow by Whizard Hlavaz (or however he spells it) is an easy to follow tutorial on thinning paint.


Prime your minis. You'll be glad you did.


If you don't the result could be like this:




And maybe Anne will update us all on when the Reaper Painting Guide will be coming out. ^_^

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Hard to say how to improve without knowing where you're at. There are countless good tips and things but some of the most basic things will make you feel a lot better about your painting and get you to do more of it. And the more painting you do the more you'll improve. That's the best tip.


For example, most people here wouldn't reccomend drybrushing. But in reality, you can do a drybrush over a black primer and make an entire figure look really quite good. And quick! Then there is dipping which some people do... I use a lot of inks myself. Answer these things: What do you want your miniatures to look like? How much time are you willing to invest on an individual miniature? And what are you going to be using them for when you're done?


First things first, use primer and sealer. Otherwise there is no point in painting really...

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The Rabbit has an excellent point--what goal are you trying to reach? D'you just want good basic playable minis, or are you aiming for the top and eventually selling your work or painting for competition? Or d'you just want to figure out how good you can get? In which case, the answer is "As good as you're willing to spend time and effort to be"! ::D: I will say that if you're aiming for the top, be ready to spend an inordinate amount of time, hours and hours, on each lonely mini--but if you paint for relaxation, as I still do even though I now also do it as my full-time job, then you'll probably find that the time just flies by. ::):



p.s. not that I need to say it once again, but oh boy, primer is totally your friend. :) I prefer Floquil white spray primer, made by Testors. And if you live anywhere near Texas, you can stop by Reaper HQ for a painting lesson any Saturday! ::D:

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