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Dark Elf Queen on Throne


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Been wanting to paint this up since forever. I'm glad I waited until I was good enough to do this classic up right. Mini's don't come much cooler than this sculpt, and she's got just about the best face I've ever had the pleasure of painting.


New for me was doing Silver hair and non-purple or black Drow skintones. If I had a Chess set made of Reaper miniatures, she would be the queen of the black side, no doubt about it.

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Let me pick my jaw up from off the floor before finish this...


Ok, OMG! That is absolutely amazing. From the color scheme to the highlighting to well, everything else, I doubt a better job could be done on this mini. I especially like the boots, they look like her minions just finished polishing them!

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Beautiful fig! I'm so in awe of your highlights. The boots look so wonderously satiny, the armor metallic, and please please share that silver hair recipe/technique...


(me = pathetic Ed Greenwood's Seven Sisters fan) Would kill to emulate that and do up a bunch of classic reaper figs resembling my fav chars. ::P:

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Many thanks ^_^


Hmm...let's see, the silver hair...


1. Basecoat of Ghostly White, or Ghost White...the MSP one, new paints to me still, don't remember all the names yet. Took me a year to remember names like "scrofulous brown" and "sombre grey" from VGC. ::P:

2. Shade with a glaze of that color mixed with a touch of Breonne Blue I think the name is.

3. Rehighlight with the Ghost White in areas of reflected light, keeping the darker area you applied in step 2 to represent the imaginary horizon line...sort of like NMM for hair, or the term NHH "non hair hair" has been used before to describe this style that I do, funnily enough.

4. Add Pure White to your Ghost White and highlight as normal up to the highest hotspots of pure white ink. I Always go for either white ink or Titianium White (tube paint) for my bright whites. Haven't found a mini paint yet that can offer that kind of brightness in their whites.


Working with the mindset of soft, silky hair and how each section or curl is it's own "reflective entity" helps. Each section possesses it's own relationship to it's environment, so try to conceive an idea of where the light would fall realistically, always keeping your imaginary light source in mind. Imagination is key, but reference helps the first few times. Once you get the knack for thinking in terms of gradients of color and how they work on planar surfaces, (basically the concepts and principles behind NMM) you can apply that technique to almost any line on a mini and have it work for you. Once you get the inner vision of how the hair "ought" to look, then it's just a matter of training your hands and mind to work together to produce that look. That's where practice comes in. I guess that can be said for just about anything sort of creative process though, but it definately applies here.


At least that's my approach to style.


Grasping certain concepts like radiosity and refraction of how light interacts with different materials is intrinsic to rendering the materials believably at such a small scale. I try to get my leather to look like leather, my metals like metals, my flesh to have the radiosity of flesh and my cloth to have the "feel" of whatever cloth it's meant to be. For me it's fun, and I hope it is for you as well. Eventually it all comes together and you can really just enjoy the process of painting, instead of struggling with the technical aspects of what you're doing, you can just sort of paint by after you've made the (mostly mental) hurdle of learning the technical stuff. I'm always learning from others and my mistakes, and I'm glad that others ask questions from me as well.

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I know you've already done it with this one, but from now on, you oughta just include your paint recipes with your pic posts. IT will save time. As you know someone is gonna ask.


Truly awesome hair.


You are another of one of those that needs to turn on a camcorder camera over your should while you paint. I will be happy to turn it into useable web ready video.

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Well, it has been said before but the boots and hair blow me away. Thanks for the quick tutorial on how to do the hair. The mental side of NMM and hair like that is what I struggle with. I can't seem to imagine how the light should fall and reflect.


Anyway, amazing job!



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She looks fantastic.


Too bad it's not a mini that could be used as a PC.

I agree, too bad she doesn't come without the throne as well. Makes a great end boss though, sitting in the back of the room casting curses and summoning combatants to fight for her.


Thanks all for the FB, and McClimbin, don't forget to grab magazines and look at the adds for things like hair products etc...just tune out the extra stuff and focus on the colors of the hair, Blur your eyes a little bit and and only the colors will appear, make a mental note of what those colors are similar too, then choose paints to match. For instance:


Here's the basic concept:




Here's how to visualize it: in terms of painting it:


Take your desired end result, which you want to appear like this:




To go about getting it that way start with putting down your basic shadows and midtones like so:




Then work on establishing your highlights as you detail the hair:




Then its time to move to your zenith lighting or maximum highlighting from above:




Whew, now that I've finally broken down and done this I can just point to this thread the next time the topic comes up. ^_^ Sweet!

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