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Getting ready to get into painting.


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Dry Palette: What I use as a very durable, and re-usable palettes are standard white kitchen/bathroom tiles you can find at any home improvement store. They are porcelain, so they won't stain and are easy to clean. I just use a bit of hot water and a scrubbie and it cleans right up. You can even put them in the dishwasher. Best of all they are cheap-usually less than $1.00 each so you can get a stack of them.

 

Brushes: It is good to have high quality natural fiber brushes, particularly Kolinsky sable, but also get some cheap synthetic brushes. Slapping down base coats and a lot of general painting can be done with synthetic brushes. Save your good brushes for the fine detail work, make sure to keep them clean, and they should last for a long time.

 

Washes: There are a lot of pre-made washes on the market but you can get started making your own out of paint you already have, water, and some matte medium. While shopping get some empty little jars (most hobby stores have them). You can mix up washes and store them in the jars.  For starters I would make washes out of brown liner, blue liner, your darkest red and greens, and perhaps a dark purple.

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Alright, so I went and got a bunch of painting supplies (this crap is more expensive than I was expecting) and I have one question left. What do you guys use to paint on? The only thing this store had was this cheap plastic tarp that I'm supposed to throw over my table to protect it. I was hoping for something a little more durable and less cheap. I feel like I'll have to replace this after a few uses. I think I saw some people using a cutting board (for crafts, not food). Is that a good option? I definitely want something to protect my table as I will be doing all my painting on the same table I use to eat.

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A wet palette will cost you only a few bucks for parchment paper. You probably already have the sponge, penny (to deter mold), and a container. Use excess parchment paper for cookies.

 

If you don't have dedicated space for painting, I'm sure a vinyl placemat and paper towel will do. I have an old desk that I use that's now covered with bits of dried paint and sad looking miniatures... :lol:

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I think I saw some people using a cutting board (for crafts, not food). Is that a good option? I definitely want something to protect my table as I will be doing all my painting on the same table I use to eat.

 

Just a few layers of newspaper will work just fine unless you manage to spill most of a bottle and then leave the paint to sit.  I've run Paint and Takes for close to a decade at a local con, and no one has ever spilled enough paint to get through the newpaper sheets that I put down.

 

A cookie sheet or cutting board does have the advantage that you can move the entire setup somewhere else with ease.

 

Ron

 

PS:  There's an old (and somewhat out of date) beginning painter's shopping list that I wrote a while back in The Craft section.  If you happen to be coming to GenCon, I'm teaching an updated version of the class on Thursday and Friday morning.  Both are sold out, but if you show up with enough generics, there is a good chance that I can get you in.

Edited by vutpakdi
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The problem with using newspaper is first that I don't get newspapers. Ever other week I'll get some small coupon type book, but that's it. I'd have to save a lot to be able to use them to paint. The second problem is that I'm maybe slightly OCD and clutter drives me absolutely crazy. Newspapers spread out across my table, even for a short while, would bother me. I'd rather pay a little extra money to just not deal with that. I will look into getting some sort of cutting board. If it works well and can be cleaned fairly easily, I would prefer the hard, stiff surface to work on as well. I just have to find one big enough to be my workspace.

 

Again, I want to thank you all for the advice. I'm running some Pathfinder today, but I will start painting tomorrow. I'll be sure to post pictures when I'm done.

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PS:  There's an old (and somewhat out of date) beginning painter's shopping list that I wrote a while back in The Craft section.  If you happen to be coming to GenCon, I'm teaching an updated version of the class on Thursday and Friday morning.  Both are sold out, but if you show up with enough generics, there is a good chance that I can get you in.

I knew I remembered seeing that once, but couldn't recall where.

 

If it's ever to be updated, I'd go with different levels of what is required. Going from "barebones" for beginner (brushes, paint, primer) and expand towards the next logical step in purchasing, like knives/files/glues for prepping, carrying cases, the different paint additives, epoxy putty for good gap filling, wet palette for further paint expertise, etc.

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I do my painting, modding, basing and everything else on the same surface, so yeah, it can help to have a durable option. I use one of those green "self-healing" crafting pads with the yellow grid painted on (grid can be handy). I love it.

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 Since I have a dedicated painting table, I just rip off two paper towels, fold them in half and use that for my work surface. Unless I seriously spill paint, I just use the same ones over and over until they start to fall apart. I use the same method when I travel to game stores/hobby shops for Paint Days. Painting isn't usually particularly messy as far as getting paint anywhere but on your fingers.

 

But a cutting board or craft pad is definitely a good choice.

 

 

For a palette, I just use one of those cheap two-dollar ones from the craft store.

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So I painted my first mini from the L2PK today. Only partially followed the instructions given, but definitely used them as a guideline. Took me a little over two hours, and it turned out as bad as I was expecting, but it's a start. I definitely want to get some more paint, but I have enough that I should be fine for now. I also really need to work on highlighting and the small details.

 

Any advice besides to just continue practicing?

 

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Continue to practice.

 

Your first few minis should focus on learning how the paints work, brush control and getting paint where you want it to go. After that start working on contrast and layering (shades and basic highlights) then blending.

 

There are also a lot of good free learn to pant videos out there with the ones from painting Buddha being the best. Heres one of my favorites

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MonkeySloth nailed it with the advice! Keep practicing and a few months from now you'll be amazed by the progress you make. Study the work of your peers here on the forums and don't be afraid to ask how a particular effect was achieved, etc. I have a painting methodology that isn't generally employed by a great number of people (with respect to approach) and it wasn't made clear to me until I did a 70-something picture WIP on some Red Box Games figures in our group project. There is a ton of material from which to pull.

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 That's actually pretty good for your first one. Compare that to some of my early work - representing the first five years of my painting career (because the internet hadn't been invented and there was nobody to teach or explain anything to me).

 

 The best advice is to simply accept that your first ten minis are going to suck... ::D: When they don't suck quite as bad as you expected them to, you'll be happy about how they came out. After that, you'll start seeing a noticeable improvement between what your currently painting and the first ones you did.

 

Honestly, though, if you can manage to paint nice clean lines on your base coats, that's all you need to know for now - everything beyond that, even dry-brushing and washes, are advanced techniques that you'll pick up over time...

 

 

   Also, NEVER throw out or repaint your first dozen minis or so - keep them exactly the way they were when you finished them to remind you of where you've started and how far you've come.

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It didn't come out quite as poorly as I was expecting (I was expecting it to be pretty terrible), but I think that's mostly because of its simplicity. I also have gotten a lot of advice from this forum, the Bones III Kickstarter comments, and I've watch several youtube tutorials.

 

After my first paintjob I definitely learned a few things. I need better brushes (or just need to get better at using the brushes I have). I also will be getting a wet palette probably today before I paint mini number two. Small details are hard. And washes seem to be the easiest thing in the world (so far). I need better lighting. A magnifying glass might not be the worst idea in the world. Some cheap rags might be nice. And finally, I really want to paint a big dragon figure.

 

If my second figure goes well I'll probably be ordering more paints from Reaper soon. I've go a list of the ones I want and hopefully those will suffice for a long time. I'll post number two when I'm finished regardless of how it turns out.

 

 

When you guys prime with brown liner, do you water it down a bit first or just paint it straight on?

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I water it down a bit. Almost like a wash. Maybe 1 drop liner to 2 drops water, or somewhere around there. Slop it on and let it dry. Your paint will have something to stick to and your deepest crevices will already be a dark color. Your first skele looks good. Welcome to the addiction. Have fun!

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