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Ten most essential paints:


I mix my own colors. I came into this from an art background (Well, I went into an art background from painting minis, but that was a long time ago), so it came more naturally to me.


I use Golden Matte Fluid Acrylics. They're a top quality brand, not as thin or perfect for minis as minis paints are, but I like them and they never need shaking. Probably my most used paints are:


Titanium White (far and away the most useful, almost on my second bottle and they are 8x standard minis paint size)

Burnt Umber (second most used, a really versatile brown -- after this it's in color order, not utility)

Burnt Sienna

Quinacridone Magenta

Red Oxide

Yellow Ochre

Hansa Yellow Opaque

Phthalo Green

Phthalo Blue

Ultramarine Blue

Carbon Black


and a handful of metallics and iridescents.

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Let me just add my answer to those above:


I also use this as a controlled wash or added to my previous wash mix as my final shadow.


...wet palette...

It does extend the drying time of my paints but at the environment that I paint in my paints still eventually dry out eventually. I've started keeping a chime app on my phone to remind me to check if I should add water every hour.

When I use additives that dilutes the paint it usually spread outs everywhere so I started using pill/gum blister packs or any small container in my wet palette so I can dilute as I go instead. I also use the small containers for washes so whenever I cover my wet palette the washes don't dry out either.

...how long do you usually paint for...


On the rare occasions I do commissions I try to keep it under 15 hours. I paint for fun and it seems like I love the process more than the actual end product so I tend not to keep track of how long it's taking. For competitions it's usually until the deadline. :)


...How long do you go through paint bottles?...


Whenever I see new paints coming out it seems like not fast enough. The RMS Brown and Blue Liners are the only bottles I have extras of and I still haven't used up my original ones which I bought almost 6 years ago. I'm not a very prolific painter.



On commission pieces, yeah. My personal collection, not usually. When I do use one I prefer Vallejo's Premium RC Color Matt Varnish. I figured it was designed for rc cars so it should be pretty tough. I apply it by paint brush which when applied too thick can turn it satin.


...essential paints...


Dark elf shadow (my go to shadow for most of my sin tones), Brown and Blue Liner (you can get a nice black one by mixing the 2), Linen and Ghost white (for highlights), Army Painter Soft, Strong and Dark tones.


...painter to be a fan of...


Depends on the style you want. I suggest looking in Putty&Paint, look for minis you like the style of and look up the painters.


...favorite Reaper mini...


It would have to be my avatar, 02967 Alastriel, Elf Sorceress


...decide it's time to stop...


Deadline. For the one I paint for fun, I'm still trying to figure that out. If I was to describe my paint style it's "constant correction." And I always find something that needs to be corrected.


...choosing what to paint next...


I usually choose something that's the opposite of what I least liked about the last one I finished.


...How many minis...a year...


Around 6 - 12. I'm easily distracted.


...cups...to brushes...


I bought a 750 ml covered plastic container. I fill it with about 500ml of filtered water with a few drops of dishwashing liquid. Lots of water means I don't have to change that often.


...distilled water...


I use distilled water in my wet palette. That plus the copper wires to hopefully delay starting a civilization in there.


...squirt bottles...


+1 on the Reaper bottles. I also like those Nalgene dropper bottles, you'll never loose the cap.

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Not a noob, but I could use some 15mm painting suggestions....


I've been painting minis for 30+ years, but never really tried any "advanced" techniques - good enough for the game table was, well, good enough.  Lately, however, I've decided to up my game in an effort to do justice to the quality of newer 15mm miniatures.


Liners are killing me. I've studied my Jen Haley and Anne Foerster DVD set extensively, but (1) it doesn't really discuss liners all that much and (2) their example miniatures in the videos are 32mm(?) and my canvas is half that size.  Whenever I try my hand at lining, I seem to end up re-painting the great majority of my base coat.  Moreover, when I'm done, it doesn't even look like I've lined anything.  Most frustrating.


Does lining even apply to 15mm?  Or, should I simply brown wash my miniatures?  Perhaps my liner brush is too large for 15mm (just thought of that)?  Perhaps my problem is technique; how does one properly apply liner?


I would greatly appreciate your insights.

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For the record, I don't line.


I prime white, mark my "territories" with my base colors, then I go in with my "secondary base coat" which marks where my shadows, midtones, and highlights are. I let the shadows define a more natural liner and these get done first, and layered/blended into the midtone, which gets layered and blended into the highlights.


I also take forever to finish anything. :rolleyes::lol:


On 15mm, not sure, but if you want to line, I'd lay that down first so you can be messy and not worry about going back and fixing things.


Froggy works in smaller scale a lot and may have better advice than moi.

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Thanks for the replies.


I've  never lined until recently.  I use to wash with diluted India ink, but in order to lighten the ink to the point where it didn't overly stain my miniatures, I wound up with bath tub rings.


So, I shifted to Army Painter Quickshades.  The Strong Tone was way to dark for 15s, so I tried the Soft Tone.  Somewhat better results, but I couldn't get "acceptable" results consistently; my miniatures frequently ended up looking "dirty".


I've always "dressed" my miniatures, starting with the flesh and working out from there.  Lining first never occurred to me....

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Three more questions from a noob.


What sort of cups do you use to wash your brushes with? I found some 3 oz paper cups that are a bit too small I think, plus I think they're kind of flimsy and I'm afraid they'll start leaking after a while during a long paint.

I use things that don't look like things that would hold my drinks. You have no idea how important that is. They're square-ish plastic tupperware-ish things. Definitely not something I would put a drink in. FYI: Paper cups are a bad idea. They'll start to leak after a while.


I know a lot of people use distilled water for their paint thinning. I think that makes a fair bit of sense, since tap water can have all sorts of stuff in it, but it also got me thinking. Do you guys also use distilled water to wash your brushes too?

Do I? Yes. I like to avoid water quality complications.


What little squirt bottles can you recommend to me that'll give about the same size droplet as Reaper paint bottles? You know, either for dispensing distilled water for thinning, or perhaps for mixes or washes I make. I'd like a fairly consistent droplet between everything so I can calculate ratios easier.

I prefer Reaper bottles, but they're not cheap. It doesn't really matter, though. You have to have more control to drop water out of those things than to drop paint. Water's thinner, and will form bigger drops before falling, in my experience.

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The only thing I have to add: I love threads like this. The amount of passion for our odd little hobby expressed here is amazing, and the willingness of folks on this board to mentor someone new without declaring "MY WAY IS THE RIGHT WAY" is heartwarming and encouraging to the Nth degree.  


I'll even go further. Ya'll make me feel that not only am I *not* a freak for slathering my love, money, and time on little lumps of painted metal, but that it's the most normal thing in the world, because the desire to create something weird and beautiful is irrepressible, unreplaceable, and an *essential component* of being fully human.


So, anyway. Just had to get that off my chest. Back to your scheduled programming. 

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