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WIP: Dragon Diorama (Here be Dragons! possible entry)


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Hello everybody!


I am working hard on a diorama to, if I get it done in time, submit to the Here be Dragons! competition.


I have a lot of pics from the start, but I hit a problem tonight and wanted to ask the forum for opinions and advice.


The diorama will tell a story. To test the idea, I won't tell you what, and if you can guess it then the story is well shown to the public :)


Some pics:






That was "version 1" of my idea. Of course, cleaning of minis (removing bases) and sculpting needed to be done (I cleaned the minis already, sculpting flames is next).


I was quite happy about this composition, but something kept bothering these last couple days, something I finally put my finger on:


- The wizard dwarf holding the shield is too static!


I went through the rest of my Reaper order and found a mini that I originally intended to go up there, quickly put it together, and then set a new scene (let's call it v2):



As for composition, I brought these friends:


(version 2.1):



...or version 2.2:



Also, to balance the diorama, this little guy (non Reaper, old mini I don't know where it comes from):




These are the minis available to me, basically:



Size comparison of the little dwarf:



Sorry for the bad pics.


Now, help me! Do you think the story is clear? Do you like v1 or v2 better? If v2, v2.1 (fighter to the side) or v2.2 (fighter in the path of the dragon and under the flame blast, mostly)?


Should I keep the little dwarf? Should I add something else?


There are pieces missing (like bushes, foliage on the tree plus burning tips of the branches, etc) but basically that it is. Any comment or suggestion is deeply appreciated!





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My preference is version 2.1 with the inclusion of the dwarf. For what it's worth, it seems more "realistic" that the fighter would approach from an oblique angle. It also keeps all the interesting bits from falling in a straight line which allows you to seem details from every angle. Regardless of how you proceed - I'm looking forward to seeing this progress.

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The composition is great, I like the way you placed the rocks and three, it had movement and creates a dynamic landscape on the diorama. I also like the idea of "magical" shield blocking the Dragon's fire, it's convincing even if the Dwarf look a little stiff.

I see you have Gilok Onyxfist on your work bench. Because of the way he's crouching and seem to be fighting back with a ball of energy, he would be my first choice.

Then, I would use Thorvald as a brute force fighting in close combat and Brock Battlebow ready to strike from his hideout.

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Mmm, thanks. I agree the dwarf-ess is very cool, plus the hammer gives a sense of shielding, blocking...


The base has tracks molded in, like someone run up and found he/she needed to leap... and then had to cast up the shield before being toast! That is the sense behind using the magician with the cloak, it help bring together that dinamic feel.


I can use the girl, surely (she was my first choice after all!). It bothers me how static her braids are, and her skirt. Painting movement there would be really difficult...


Metalchaos, Gilok would look cool indeed there. He looks like he had time to set, thou... and if I put him up, I feel I would have to also sculpt his energy/magic up crashing against the flames! Which would be cool too :)


I will clean him quickly and check the post.


BTW, I love Thorvald but he is sooo looking down :(


Thanks everybody! I cut one of my fingers just now so this will go slowly; I will set a few different scenes and snap some pics for you guys, and then let the wife decide (as usual LOL)

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Thanks chaosscorpion!


As I mentioned, yesterday I dug a xacto carving tip into my left-hand index finger. The cut was clean, so even when the whole cut was about 1/4 of an inch it is curing well. However, loosing the ability to bend your index finger due to the bandage is very very bothersome (plus, my hand kinda hurts in general). So I cannot really clean minis, since holding them is awkward (plus, not a nice grip and again sharp pointy things... ummm).


I, however, spent some time thinking on the dragon. Originally I was going with the old idea of black dragon, green scales, etc... then I thought, with not paint her (it is a her in my mind) like a real world lizard? A colorful lizard; after all, nature is telling us "stay away, this one is dangerous!". Like a bright, venomenous snake!


The scheme I chose might not come from the deadliest lizard we have around on Earth... but I kinda loved the oportunity of bright colors:




A Gecko. Why? Because it is green. And the other main, big element of the scene will be a great red spout of flame. So, contrasting colors.


I took the picture throu some software, checked the values (I don't really know why, but it is more info to process. Then I can perhaps draw conclusions as to what works with some other piece of information; what color is actually brighter? etc). I took pictures of my available greens and discovered... most of them are biased into the blue hue. The most "yellowish" green I have is a caqui color.


And the Gecko is a very yellow-slanted green color. Bright, too. I mixed some colors and found this one:



The base would be the one marked as "50/50". It is a (more or less) equal mix of artist-grade Pthalo Green and an old craft paint I have called "sunburst yellow", which is the brightest, cleanest yellow I have in hand. It is a nice, bright green. Steps up are adding yellow (for highlights), and down is more green). Down the spectrum is a splotch adding a little black, and a little white. Of course it looses some brightness but it is nice to see the colors and know what to expect from them.



I even did a quick test on the dragon scales and looks good :)


So I proceeded to look for old paint pots to clean so that I can mix the green and save it. This dragon is going to take some amount of paint!

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Boltgun Metal, the memories of painting... bolters, actually...



Mixed some paint:



It looks a bit fluo, right? It will be darker when it dries, I keep telling myself...


First coat, prepare to be blinded...



Second coat.



The thing is bid! These two coat took me about 3 (three!) hours. And I found so many mold lines I want to kill myself :(


But the good thing is, as always, the first time you hit a mini with the brush you actually see all the detail, and start thinking about what color will go were, and transitions, etc.

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Actually, it is a plastic "toy" I picked up in a general stuff store in France. It doesn't mention the brand, (and since then I filed off the typical plastic toy things like "made in China", etc), but it is similar to these:



Best thing? It was 12EUR :)


And yes, it is pretty even if it's general quality is not miniature-grade.

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