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dks

how I paint eyes

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In my latest Show-Off thread (the Dark Elf Queen), some folks asked me how I painted the eyes. I replied in that thread, but I'm reposting the message and image here.

 

Here's a very quick graphic (using Photoshop) of the steps that I use to paint eyes.

 

post-2358-1247793848.jpg

 

1. Shade and highlight face.

2. Fill the eyes with Brown Liner. Extend the outer edge to simulate eyelashes on a female figure.

3. Paint in an off-white such as Fair Highlight, leaving a little dark ring around the new paint.

4. Paint the overall shape of the irises with Brown Liner. The figure doesn't have to be looking straight ahead.

5. Add a dash of color at the bottom of each iris.

6. Add the sparkly reflections with Pure White.

7. Paint the eyebrows.

 

The sketch shows only one eye, but I do each step on both eyes before going to the next step.

I often have to touch up between steps, especially to make the eyes symmetrical or to keep the white from Step 6 from being too big.

 

Hope this helps,

Derek

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Thanks, derek, very helpful! I usually stop at Step 4. I know I need to step it up now and take it to the next level, but it's just so tiny!

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You are a painting god, Derek! :blink:

 

I consider my eyes sucessful if I can get as far as your Step 4 without botching things. Sigh. :down:

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Derek, what size brushes or other tools do you use? I find it extremely difficult to do anything past step 4 and even step 3 is nearly impossible.

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Derek, what size brushes or other tools do you use? I find it extremely difficult to do anything past step 4 and even step 3 is nearly impossible.

 

Brush: Kolinsky sable, generally a size 0. These days I'm using a Vallejo size 0, because that's what my local game store had in stock when I really needed a new brush a few months ago. I've also had good success with Reaper size 0 or 1 brushes. The tip has to be sharp and the belly (I think it's called) has to be big enough to hold a good reserve of wet paint. As people who have seen me paint know, I use a sheet of white paper (ordinary 20# bond) as a blotter/palette/etc; before I put brush to miniature-eye, I test the consistency of my paint and the fineness of the dot my brush will make. Usually there's a spot of black on the paper by the time I'm about paint the white sparkle, so I can make a tiny dab of white on the dark.

 

No other tools and no magnification (yet -- the sculptors older than 40 tell me that I will start needing it soon).

 

Derek

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This looks similar to the eyes-painting tutorial on Marike Reimer's site, though it looks as though she adds a step just before the iris colour goes on.

 

Yup, she paints a spot of white first to make the iris color brighter, and she adds the white sparkle before the iris color. I often find that I want to reshape the iris color (using Brown Liner) if it goes too high in the iris, so I save the white dot until the end. Whatever gets you to a good end result, right? ::):

 

Derek

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No other tools and no magnification (yet -- the sculptors older than 40 tell me that I will start needing it soon).

 

You have really good eyesight then, there's no way I could paint that without some magnification.

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No other tools and no magnification (yet -- the sculptors older than 40 tell me that I will start needing it soon).

 

You have really good eyesight then, there's no way I could paint that without some magnification.

 

I have bad eyesight (-9.50 nearsighted) but good glasses & contact lenses! ::P:

 

Derek

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My eyes are about -6.5 diopters, so I usually paint without my glasses. Nearsightedness is optically the same thing as using magnification (assuming that you aren't wearing your glasses). And the depth perception issues are easier when you aren't using magnification.

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Mine are in the -10.25 to -10.50 range.

I can't paint with contacts in but with my glasses, I can just slide the specs down my nose and look over them (a la angry librarian).

I've also used the double spec method of glasses and +3 reading glasses on my nose...that usually gets concerned looks from my wife and kids.

 

It's a nightmare at contests though. When I really want to get a good look at a mini, but I can't get close enough, or when they're behind plexy and my head bumps the case before my eyes can focus :angry: or I move in to look at mini A but get my cheek poked by the lance of mini B. Oh when will those Bionic Eyes get invented!

 

-AW

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I judge minis contests pretty regularly, and it's a never ending story of:

 

1) Take off the glasses to look at the figure closely.

 

2) Put on the glasses to look at the figure from 18" or so.

 

3) Repeat for each figure.

 

4) Make the first cut.

 

5) Repeat until done -- with that category.

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