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03461: Goldar the Barbarian


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I picked this guy up a while ago with the idea of doing a study in skin tones. He sat in my box-of-unpainted for a while, and popped up again with the Yet Another D&D Campaign party -- one of our players is playing a Goliath Barbarian with a big honkin' axe. Goldar is, um, perfect for the role. So that guy kicked in for another copy of Goldar and I'm painting up the first one I bought for his PC. Here he is, mostly basecoated:


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I say "mostly" because I can't figure out what I want to do with the fur, so I gave it a couple coats of Brown Wash and decided to leave it for later. Everything's pretty warm in tone except the axe head; the skin comes out a bit blue because my camera is getting confused, but it's really a 3:2 mix of Cloudy Grey and Rosy Highlight. The plan is to bring the skin tones down through something blueish for their shadows and keep everything else (except the axe, natch) in warm tones. The heavy leather is Uniform Brown; the straps are Terran Khaki, and the axe handle's Khaki Shadow. The axe head is Blackened Steel, and the other metals are Scorched Metal, which is one of my favourite paints in the RMS lineup but somehow I never use it. Maybe I'll strip Nayl's sword and do it up in Scorched Metal with Green Liner in the shadows.


Anyway, Goliaths are supposed to have complex skin markings, which I'm quietly dreading. The rest of the paint is going to be a lot of fun.

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Got a bit more work done, shading the skin and the axe-head.


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I changed my camera setup a little bit and I'm not sure it's playing entirely nicely with the colour balance, but the skin is indeed significantly more blue because that's how I shaded it. I started with a bit of plain ol' Cloudy Grey, then mixed in some Clear Blue and some Khaki Shadow and some other weird s#!t I had on my wet palette, and eventually there was some Blue Liner involved... I dunno, it looks good. Then I highlighted with Rosy Highlight, using thin brushstrokes mostly in the direction of the muscle fibres; I don't know how well that comes across but it seems to give at least a little texture. Somewhere in there I framed the eyes with Walnut Brown and painted them in with Rosy Highlight + Clear Blue (Goliaths, bless them, don't have pupils or irises). Looks like the head could use a bit more in the way of highlights.


The axe-head is dead simple, shaded with Blue Liner and highlighted (at least as far as I'm gonna go before sealing) with Tarnished Steel and Pure Silver.


Right now he looks a little bit too blue for my liking, a bit too far towards Dr. Manhattan; I might glaze the skin with a neutral brown at some point.

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Thanks for the comments, folks. Jabberwocky, I'm right on the same page. ::):


Today I finished off the leather bits and shaded the scorched metal, cloth, and wood. I also went over the fur with a couple washes of VMC Smoke, because I still couldn't figure out what to do with it and Smoke cures all ills. I'm starting to like where it's ending up, so maybe I'll just keep going on this random process. Also, I rediscovered the process for setting my camera's white balance correctly.


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The cuir bouilli leather armour started as Uniform Brown. I hit it with a liberal shading of VMC Smoke, trying to pick up on the idea that this sort of cured leather tends to have broad and rich/warm shadows with sharp transitions to highlights and the occasional mottled dark patch. Later on, I couldn't resist trying out my new Vallejo inks, so I hit it with some Sepia ink thinned with straight matte medium. I'm really excited about the results, although it didn't glaze the way I expected and I had to learn two-brush wet blending on the fly! ::o: As you can see, it worked. I highlighted it in streaks (trying to emphasize the grainy texture) by adding more and more Leather White to the Uniform Brown basecoat.


The soft leather straps got some Green Ochre shadows, into which I mixed a bit of Muddy Olive for deeper shading. Highlights are again on the grain, this time with pure Leather White.


The axe handle got the same treatment as the fur -- "I don't know what to do about this, let's just hit it with Smoke and hope it goes away." I'm kind of okay with it. Needs some highlights, maybe with Khaki Highlight or Linen White.


I mixed up some Midnight Blue and Blackened Brown for a first shade on the cloak, and tried out my new-found two-brush blending skills. Not bad, but a bit too close to the base shade in value. Then I added a mix of blue and sepia inks... and holy s#!t is that blue ink blue! Eventually I got it sufficiently desaturated and did what you can see here to the cloth. I took the same final mixture and shaded the scorched metal -- because, hey, why not? It came out pretty well.


Next I need to highlight the cloak, scorched metal, axe handle, and fur... and then figure out what I'm going to do about skin markings.

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Nearly done....


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Okay, let's see now:


- Highlighted the cloth with Intense Brown and poor two-brush blending skills, then mixed in some Linen White and crosshatched specular highlights, then did it again. Things got chalky and uneven so I glazed on some Cinder Brown. Now it's all purpleish so I may glaze on something orange like Intense Brown.


- Highlighted the metal with a mix of Scorched Metal and Tarnished Brass, then some Tarnished Brass by itself. That's enough for a pre-varnish highlight. I really like how that came out, too.


- Did the fur with what was left of one of my cloth highlights, then some pure Linen White... it was too bright, so I glazed on some VMC Smoke. It's too shiny now, but varnish will take care of that.


- Hit the axe handle with some Khaki Highlight. Eh.


- Blocked out the skin markings in a grey I mixed up from random crap, then added some Nightshade Purple and sharpened them up. Glazed with skin tone.


- Glazed the upper torso with a mix of Rosy Highlight, a tiny bit of Clear Red, and a big whack of matte medium. Mixed in some Clear Blue and some Cloudy Grey and did the lower torso. Did a batch with only Cloudy Grey and Clear Blue and did the legs. Gonna have to work on the transition a bit.


- The player wanted a big ol' facial scar, so I blocked one in with Tanned Flesh and a tiny spot of Clear Red, and did the edges with Rosy Highlight and Twilight Blue. You can kind of see it in the second and third pics.


I have a bit of darklining to do and will probably work on the skin glazes a bit more, but otherwise I'm on to the base.

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Looking good! I like the work you've done on the leather; the little perpendicular highlights on the straps came out nicely. I like the purplish tones on the cloth. It keeps the cool palette going. My main critique at this point would be to darkline between the skin and the various articles of clothing to help them pop out a bit more. The brass metallics look great as well.

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Heheh, I know I'm doing something right, Jabberwocky: both times you've come into this thread with a critique, I've already addressed it but haven't taken photos. I'm hoping to finish this guy off tonight. Glad you like the brass and the texture highlights on the leather; I'm really pleased with both of those.

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