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Hi everyone. I've been thinking a lot about color while painting recently. It's been a major motivation for some of my more recent projects. I wanted to talk about some of the things I've been doing and hoped that some of you would share your thoughts about color choice as well.
First of all, my paint collection is fairly modest. Probably around 50. But I'm a firm believer that you don't need a ton of different paints. I add paints periodically to fill gaps - especially colors that I find myself struggling to mix well (purple continues to be a struggle and I need some better options).
I love the Reaper Triads - they're a great way to expand a collection and get colors that behave well together. Also a great way to teach newer painters the philosophy behind layering. For awhile I was running with the philosophy that I wanted to avoid mixing more than two colors at once. Especially because it's harder to duplicate. I was using the triads a lot as a guide while painting.
However, I have recently pushed away from using triads. I have been playing around with more limited palettes. Not exactly the 3 color challenge, but just really considering whether or not I need to grab a new bottle, or if I can mix what I want using something I already have. With this philosophy, the triads clash. So I definitely find myself grabbing the midtones most often.
I've been thinking of this as "mindfully limited palette." Sometimes I grab the colors I know I want ahead of time, other times I'll grab a new color as I go. Typically this involves a black and a white and then 5 or less unique colors. Often a red, blue, yellow, and brown. Though not necessarily the purest versions of those colors. I might choose a greener blue. Or a brownish red.
There's two ways I've been playing with this. One is by leaning into a more monochromatic palette. I have found it really fun and challenging to try to imagine the setting a mini is in and reflecting that environment in the color choices of the mini. It's also a fun challenge to make many different shades and tones using similar colors. This is what I had in mind while painting this Ice Witch, and Swamp Skeleton.
The other way I have been playing with these limited palettes is to try for a more unified tone, but not necessarily monochrome. There's a painting theory behind a "mother color" where you mix a bit of one color into every other color on your palette. While I haven't gone that far, I have found that reusing colors, even in different mixes, helps unify the piece. Just like balancing colors across the mini. I don't have as many good photos of this, as my best examples are the most recent minis I've been working on - really pushing color variety while using limited paints. This Kobold is sort of like that, though he definitely is a bit more monochromatic. I'll have to come back and add my more colorful examples.
What kind of color theory and challenges have you been playing with to motivate and push your painting? Please feel free to share photo examples. This has been a major source of excitement and motivation in my painting recently and I feel it's really improving my results. I would love to see what everyone else is doing!
Snakeman Warrior - Painting Scales - Rhonda "Wren" Bender
Sarah the Seeress- How to paint hair - Geoff Davis
Enora, Iconic Arcanist - Hey there shaky shaky, Beginner Freehand - Brice Cocanour
Must Paint all the things!
no sense leaving a mini half finished.
all the classes were fun, but basic. they were good practice painting along. I certainly don't regret taking them,.
It is hard to get in the moment feedback online - one of things I miss most about in person classes.
The camera work was good, and I could see most of the steps. Bender's crayons were just as helpful in understanding.
By Lord of the Dish Pit
A long term resident of the Shelf of Incompletion. A year or so back I got the idea of swaping out his shovel for the ax from one of Reaper's weapon packs, but until recently didn't have much luck in getting it to stay glued. He's a rather interesting sculpt, his hat and coat are rather witch hunterlike, also I'm not able to determine a reason why the local grave digger needs armored shoulders, but his face and robe also make one wonder if perhaps he dabbles in necromancy on the weekends. Eventually I'll have to pick up another one of him, see what a necromancer conversion might turn out like...
It could be argued that an ax is a vital tool for undertakers, considering the likelihood of the local crypt containing a ghoul warren...
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