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Looking for some advice on using inks in painting.
So I've seen people using inks and spouting praise about their uses with mini painting. Especially for glazing purposes. I got a set of cheaper inks last christmas, but they really didn't play nice. They were constantly rehydrating. Even with a protective layer of spray varnish. As soon as I painted over top of it, the color would bleed back up.
Anyone know what I was doing wrong? Or if I was using a kind of ink that wasn't compatible? I bought a set of 10 colors from amazon - ZZKOKO caligraphy pen ink.
I got an airbrush recently and have heard that white ink results in smoother zenithal than traditional white paint. Any words of warning?
I painted this GW's Lord of Plagues as a hero for my Swampstalkers. He is now the Swamp Drinker, one of the Reapers (the unit I showed recently).
And this Morphus from the (unfortunately) defunct Enigma Models was actually painted few years ago. I found him in my display cabinet and though he would make for a nice Swamp Hunter, another hero for my army. So, here he is, with just a new base
By Gary Pryor
In a post Bones IV world there are lot more translucent miniatures in circulation. You may have had the same reaction I had, where I thought they were neat, but had no idea what to do with these things. Well, today was the day I decided I was going to try a few different experiments with painting these things to see what would happen. I did try an experiment once before with some purple translucent modes from bones 3, where I put a black wash over them. I was not happy with those results. They turned out looking opaque black with purple highlights from a distance, and translucent against a light or if you looked real close. Not a strong enough effect for table play. So this time, I did a bunch of research (mostly on this forum) and was told about using a clear coat and ink to add definition and maintain translucency. Looked good in the pictures, so I thought I would try some variations on that.
First thing I wanted to experiment with was testing something I read here that said something to the effect of "the clear coat actually makes them more translucent, because it changes how they reflect light" so I thought I would try a matte clear coat and a gloss clear coat and see how they compared. The following are a very light black ink wash (from the Reaper Ink triad) and then Tamiya X-22 gloss clear (on the left) and Tamiya XF86 gloss matte (on the right).
These models were not very translucent to begin with, but both coats did really make them appear more clear. The gloss was very shiny, had a distinctive wet look, and makes the model look like a clear piece of hard candy. The matte coated model appears to let about the same amount of light through, but is less reflective than it was before I coated with anything. With less reflection the model looks a little less ethereal, but also less like a plastic toy.
I decided that I didn't want wet looking spirits, so I decided to go with a black ink wash and the matte coat. Here are those results:
Much better than my last attempt, which were only transparent when held against a light. They are still reflective, but less than out of the box. I also tried a red ink instead and it had a very striking effect of red against the blue (the colors didn't blend at all like I thought they would) but it wasn't what I was looking for, so I washed it off.
Here is a comparison of a painted and unpainted model:
So really, I would say not painting them at all is totally viable. I like having the details show, but if they are ghosts, maybe it is okay that it is hard to see without taking a very close look.
I also did a matte coat on some crystals (no ink) and it improved the translucency greatly, though it is hard to capture in a photograph.
I learned I prefer that matte coat to clear, (but both are cool). Inks work well, where standard acrylics did not last time. Clear coats do make them more clear. and they transparent models look ghostly and cool already, so painting them isn't giving you that much really, if they are only intended for table play. maybe this information will be useful to someone. I wish I could have found it all in one place when I was puzzling over what to do and what to purchase.
This past weekend I started painting Brom, the 54mm scale dwarf from Enigma. The sculpt has got a mix of equipment and, to be honest, I'm not even sure what all of it is. It gives him a lot of character, but presents some challenges with the painting. I've been putting a lot of thought into how I want to approach the piece and finally decided to pick a color scheme and let that tie the figure together.
I started with the face. Considering most of it is hidden by the hair, the beard feels almost as important as the rest of the face. I used a mix of Reaper's Ruddy Leather, Secret Weapon's Orange Rust, and Reaper's Burnt Orange and Fair Skin Highlight. I find the light skin tones are nice for highlighting hair, I'd do the same with brown hair. For the blood stained cloth on his head, I used a mix of Carnage Red and Walnut Brown. I wanted it to be darker near the center, so more brown, and the moving to pure red near the boundaries. I applied the red as a glaze over the white cloth to give it the right look. Instead of using the well palette that I'd normally turn to for glazes, I ended up mixing them directly on my wet palette. Normally that produces a mess, but I used a bit of paint and then added a bunch of matte medium (plus a little water). The matte medium is thick, so it creates the right transparency without causing the glaze to flow all over the palette. Then I then it down slightly with water for a consistency that's easier to paint with. The effect is the same as a regular glaze, but since it's on the wet palette it's easier for me to mix paints and create different colored glazes. It's also easy to vary the consistency/transparency by changing up the ratio of matte medium and paint. So I can quickly make a section more opaque and another more transparent. Not something I do for all glazes, for in situations like this it's a nice option to have in my tool kit.
And here's the full figure. Still a lot left to paint!
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