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If I could paint that good I'd look past the mold lines every time. All the great details, even the painting on the base!

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So, after doing both models from L2PK1, plus a handful of Bones using the techniques learned from that, I got L2PK2 in the mail, and decided to start in on the silly-looking monk.

 

In general, I found the new techniques introduced here to be interesting. The base/shadow/highlight stuff is a lot harder work than the base/wash/drybrush technique of the first kit -- it wants more careful brushwork, as well as some vision in requiring you to choose the highlight/shadow parts rather than letting the brush and wash do it for you. Here I had the instruction book to guide me, and I'm interested in seeing how well I'll do once I freehand it. I do like the cleaner result, though.

 

Anyway, to the Tsuko. I had a couple of pictures that didn't turn out, so the first one I really have is with his skin and eyes all done.

 

8711874680_a83846ce7a.jpg

 

For the skin, the contrast between the shadows and the base seems garishly overdone here, but in person, it looks actually good. The highlights I could barely see while I was painting them, and I have to really stare to convince myself that they add anything, but I think there is a certain depth due to them. Or else I'm just convincing myself.

 

As for the eyes, well, the left one was fine; the right one resisted attempt after attempt, and if I had tried layering any more attempts on top there, he would have had bug eyes soon, so I called it good enough.

 

8711874228_7ae3d89f34.jpg

 

Hair and pants all basecoated. I didn't make any attempt to avoid painting over the pants detail, because I could tell that a) it'd be futile, and b) even if I succeeded, I'd just end up with primer gaps in between the pants and straps.

 

8711873554_890f63df62.jpg

 

Pants shaded, and here's my first big mistake. I mixed the paints in the proportions they said to in the kit, but the pants shadow came out WAY dark and brown. I wasn't sure if that's how it was supposed to be (it looked more blendy in the pictures, but I've had it happen where I think I'm not matching the pictures until I look at my own pictures later, like with the L2PK1 rat's skin), but now that I've read through this thread, I'm pretty sure I must have just had big drops of brown. Oops. The good news is, it looks okay in person; still overdone, but in miniature.

 

8711872940_3cf51c5f2a.jpg

 

Ribbons highlighted and staff basecoated. I had real problems with the ribbon highlights. It's a thin white, right? Well, I couldn't tell if they wanted me to apply it just to the highlights on the cloth (in which case, they are insane; I could barely pick out those wrappings at all, never mind highlighting certain bits of them), or just put it on as a wash. I started with the former and ended with the latter.

 

Also, this might have the highlight layer for the staff on it as well. There's no way to know, because I kept making it lighter and lighter and repainting with it, but I couldn't make it actually light enough to show up at all. I'll assume it shows subliminally, somehow.

 

The final mini:

 

8710746167_2ab1dda649.jpg

8710744921_aeb8477efe.jpg

 

(The harsh contrast on the first one is from using my phone's HDR mode, as it was too washed-out otherwise. Yes, high-end photography, I know.)

 

Overall, it came out pretty okay, considering it was my first time using these techniques. There are definitely things I didn't do perfectly, but the finished mini has a really nice, clean look that sets it apart from the post-L2PK1 minis I've done, and I'm looking forward to applying these techniques to the next freehand minis I do (after I finish up the second mini from this kit).

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I have found I really really don't like the new techniques so far. I didn't end up taking many pics and she doesn't look terrible but the wizard girl didn't look as nice as I would hope. I had to resort to some of the drybrush technique to salvage a little of it.

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I have found I really really don't like the new techniques so far. I didn't end up taking many pics and she doesn't look terrible but the wizard girl didn't look as nice as I would hope. I had to resort to some of the drybrush technique to salvage a little of it.

 

One of the really nice things about this hobby is that there isn't a "right" way to do anything, there's just whatever works for you. There's plenty of different methods for doing whatever you want to do, so if you hate the guide from the kit, you can ignore it and still get the results you're looking for.

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I have found I really really don't like the new techniques so far. I didn't end up taking many pics and she doesn't look terrible but the wizard girl didn't look as nice as I would hope. I had to resort to some of the drybrush technique to salvage a little of it.

 

One of the really nice things about this hobby is that there isn't a "right" way to do anything, there's just whatever works for you. There's plenty of different methods for doing whatever you want to do, so if you hate the guide from the kit, you can ignore it and still get the results you're looking for.

Agreed. I have lots of trouble with the type of blending the kit shows, but do much better with wet blending. So... I buy drying retardant like it's going out of style. :devil:

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Agreed. I have lots of trouble with the type of blending the kit shows, but do much better with wet blending. So... I buy drying retardant like it's going out of style. :devil:

 

Heh, my wet blending looks like I sneezed too hard at the wrong moment. ::P:

 

Let's hear it for Whatever Works!

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So unlike our previous efforts with the L2PK1 (http://www.reapermini.com/forum/index.php?/topic/46096-groupopenwip-l2pk1/?p=710480) we had much better lighting and also used magnifiers to better see the detail on our miniatures.

 

Here's the end result:

2wbrz8x.jpg

34jc7ya.jpg

1zelegy.jpg

33zbibc.jpg

30jh455.jpg

33tt5co.jpg

 

My wife did the sorceress and I did Tsuko. We've decided that I prefer the shadow/mid/highlight layering technique and she prefers using a wash/drybrush technique!

 

Onwards to L2PK4 via some Reaper zombies first, will post those up soon. We're both enjoying the whole process, really surprised my wife is happy to sit there for hours painting. Now to get her to play some games ;)

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Your wife wins this round, that hair is excellent. Both look great though. Big improvements over the first minis.

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You both did a really amazing job on both minis! What a great painting team you make!

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So, now the second mini from LTPK2. This one was really, really hard for me. Part of that is just because I'm an idiot, and was working under dim light, but in a bright room, so had a hard time seeing the detail while I was painting it, but part of it... well, I'll get to that.

 

8728917119_6c58ee19d6.jpg

 

So, the base skin layer. No problems so far.

 

8730034812_855eb08e16.jpg

 

Now putting on the lighter color. Here's where the problems start.

 

My first problem was that I just had trouble controlling the paint at all. The instructions say to thin it down to the consistency of a near-wash. Okay, fine, I get that. But the problem is, when I do that, now it wants to ACT like a wash, and go all over the place. How do you control watery paint, and keep it where you put it?

 

The second problem was that I had a hard time seeing where to leave the shadows. Almost everything I did looked wrong. But I figured maybe the highlight step would make it look better.

 

8730029540_a3341d36c4.jpg

 

So here's after the highlight step, the eyes, the hair, and the base layer of the shirt. (I sort of forgot to take some pictures for a while.)

 

The good news is, the hair worked pretty well, and the eyes came out very well for me.

 

The bad news is, man, that skin. The highlighting made it look slightly better, but it still looks pretty awful.

 

8728909455_ed8f1aa213.jpg

 

So, one of the things that baffles me about how they do these LTPK instructions is, they have you totally finish the skin before even starting with the clothing (for instance). It's sort of bizarre, because if you mess up at all trying to get the edges of the skirt and get blue on the leg, now you have to not just touch up a skin basecoat, but redo all that shading you already did.

 

In this case, though, that worked out for the best, because the redone shading looks MUCH better. Two wrongs don't always make a right, but here they did.

 

And the finished mini:

 

8728890305_12db4d2460.jpg

8728889475_00bbc82cb1.jpg

 

The bracelet on her upraised hand came out badly, and the scroll could be better (it actually was better, then I tried to do something with the writing, and it failed so hard that I repainted over it, and didn't get it to look as good the second time). But beyond that, I'm pretty pleased. The shirt and skin shading looked like they were going to be a major disaster for much of the process, but in the end, they worked out reasonably okay, I think.

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