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J-Mac

Second NMM Dwarf - this time a 'cool' pallet

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Second NMM attempt, and this stuff is slow going.

 

Looking for 1) blending tips. I bought and watched Hot Metal, but my problems seems to be that I am making 'holes' in my paint and it is making a smooth surface rough as I try to go back and re-blend and fill the inconsistencies, and 2) feedback on the various bits - most of which are using one or more new techniques for me. (little background - Live in San Diego, went to Reaper store in TX this summer, saw NMM examples in person. Rethought figurine painting in general... stopped using washes, drybrushing, etc.).

 

Next technique I would like to try (after lurking on this forum for the last 4 weeks). Freehand. This figurine has potential for freehanding (shield has a big flat hammer. I painted a 'tyr' rune on the hammer and a bit of straight edging ... hate it. Looks 'flat'. Perhaps freehanding on metal not the best way to start out? Used green stuff to make a tyr rune and will apply it this week, redo the shield, and photo it again (with better backdrop). Was also thinking black runes on the mace 'ribbon'.

 

Thoughts, tricks, or tips on freehanding? Or is it just a matter of getting a few old figurines out and messing around until I am confident? When you start out with the technique, do you trace with any substance that then does not show up (did some freehand runes on a banner with a really sharp sharpee, red on red, and was going to paint over in layers of tan, linen, and white... turned out great... except for the fact that the sharpee ink bled through 8 layers or more of paint, new primer... everything!).

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I really like what you did with this mini, especially the eyes. The greens are really good as well. Thanks for sharing.

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Meh, it's ok....

 

Ha! Having known you for years I can say I am officially pissed by how much you have grown as a painter this year, while I have remained stagnant.

 

I suppose I should actually paint something...

 

However, I do not think the banner is up to the standard of the rest of the mini. It was obviously "washed" and not painted (at least I think), and is not blended like the rest of the fig.

 

I would go with green or black runes on the banner.

 

 

Brian

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Yeah - the banner. An effect of two pallets for the cloth (first pallet kept turning 'fleshy' when I went to shadow - that wasn't good). But that is only half of the issue. Most of my blending efforts (the mace, the shield, and esp. the cloak) needed two or three full attempts to smooth out the blending effect. I thought that was weird, and considering I had to let the previous attempt fully dry before starting over, it slowed down the figure a lot. But now I am getting used to it. Still, would like get a smooth blend effect that looks real in two sittings.

 

The banner was done in one pallet for the first sitting, and a different pallet for the second (essentially painting over all but the highest highlight of the first). It needs its 'second draft' revision. Will get on it when I redo the shield with green stuff.

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Solid NMM work. Contrast is the biggest key (IMO) to making NMM stand out from the matte materials (such as cloth), and you got it right: very light to very dark. You'll get the blends smoother and then it will be even better. you can also try simulating some reflections and bouncing around of light off the shiny surfaces. The placement of some highlights on the dwarf seems a little inconsistent; at the top of the shield, for example, I don't think both segments would be highlighted at the left and dark at the right, since the two segments are part of one curve, which you can imagine as part of a very large-radius cylinder -- so then imagine how the highlights on this cylinder would look if there were no notch out of the center.

 

As for freehand...

Yes, in a way you do trace a first draft with something that doesn't show in the final version -- but it's just thinned paint. It should be only thick enough that it won't bleed away from your brush, so it's definitely thin enough that you could paint several layers of it without it becoming bulky. You'll probably have to touch up your freehand anyway, and you don't want to see any telltale thickness from the paint. Use a brush with a good sharp point; a Reaper Kolinsky sable #0 or #1 works well for me. Make some guidelines, points, whatever you need to, and then connect the dots. If it's just runes on a wrapping like this, rather than a larger or more geometric symbol, though, then you won't need guidelines; just practice making a few runes on a piece of paper and then start scribbling for real on the figure. Touch up with the background color so you sharpen the runes -- especially at corners. Do some simple highlighting and shading (glazes work well for this) to make the symbol look like it is a part of the object it's on, not just stark paint -- for example, glaze over the runes with the scroll color. (You would do the same for tattoos: glaze over with the skin color. It's what makes a tattoo look more convincing, and different from warpaint or makeup that lie on the surface of the skin.)

 

Good luck, and keep on sharing,

 

Derek

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Thanks Derek, both for the tip on visualizing light effect on metallic solids and for the glazing tip for finishing a free-handing attempt on cloth (or flesh, etc). Both will be immediately useful as I finish this fellow up.

 

As you can tell, playing with reflective light is a technique I am still shy with. I will work on that next time I get the chance.

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Love the display of cool colors at work here. Reminds me of a dwarf near a sea stronghold or a mountainous snowy forest just from the colors alone. As has been mentioned by Derek, the NMM is pretty solid, especially for a second attempt! Except for checkerboard, personally don't have much experience with freehand as of yet, though just like you, been seeing some nice freehand on the forum here lately.

 

Anyhow, great piece!

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