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Wonderful World of Metalics


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I'm not feeling brave (or experienced) enough to try NMM yet, though I really want to in the future as it looks very nice on several of the mini's I have seen. While I am waiting for my skills to develop I have to use metalics. I would appreciate some hints and advice that would help make the stuff I paint with metalics more interesting and professional looking. I know that it is good to undercoat metalics in black, but that is about all. I am looking for information on all sorts of metalic colors, silver, gold, copper etc. Thanks!



Random Question: Is it possible to upload personal avitars, and not just use the ones provided by reaper. If so...how????

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First off, don't think that you HAVE to do NMM to be a "good" painter. Although you learn a lot of valuable skills in blending, etc. there are those of us that are utterly unconvinced as to the actual merits of NMM in simulating metal. I personally believe the problems stem from painter myopia and a lack of access or willingness to cross pollinate with other techniques from other hobbies. But that's just my opinion...


If you want to stick to straight metallics, the technique I use for my wargames figures is to base in black or RP Steel, overpaint in GW chainmail, wash in a very dark brown ink, and successively drybrush (or highlight) with silver. If done right looks a lot like steel. The final trick, however, is to use a good glosscote like Future Floor finish to give it the reflectivity you need.


For more advanced techniques look at metallizer paints like Mr. Metal from Gunze Sangyo, or Metallizer from Testors. These are very fine buffable laquer paints. Buy gunmetal (or similar, a dark metallic shade), aluminum, and silver. Basepaint in a 50/50 mix of gunmetal and aluminum, shade (not with a WASH or you'll have a real mess; just brush paint) with a 75/25 mix of gunmetal and aluminum, and then highlight with silver. Buff the paints when dry and between coats with a cotton swab. Excellent finishes that look very convincingly like steel, and I'm very happy with the results (I use it on 54mm figures or larger). Use a final wash of dark brown or black ink (depending on the effect you want) and seal with future for reflectability and to simulate polished metal.



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For metallics, I usually base coat with black or very dark grey, then I apply a dark metallic, followed by highlights of lighter metallics. There's usually a wash of black in there somewhere as well.

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I like to basecoat black and paint say with boltgun metal. Next I will use thin washes of inks or opaque colors to add shading to the metal. To do this, try using a seperate brush that is moist with only water and once you aplly a bit of wash, you can feather the shading to make it smoother. Increasing amounts of inks or paint will cause the metal to have a nice worn and textured look. Afterwards, using a chestnut will be great for rust, grime or weathering.


Once all my shading is done, I will re-edge everything with boltgun and highlight by adding a lighter silver like mithril.

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For silver I base in grey or black and then paint on gunmetal and work up to highlights in silver and pearl.


For Gold I basecoat in Yellow Ochre, then a deep gold and work up to highlights of light gold.


For Copper or Bronze I basecoat in a reddish brown, then the copper or bronze and work up to a reddish gold highlight.

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I too am not brave enough to do NMM.

So I've developed a few techniques with metallics.


I use white primer on everything since I have very much disliked grey or black primers when I have used them.


But, of course, metallic paints generally end up looking bad over white.


To remedy this I always put a solid basecoat underneath the metal ... usually in a "matching" colour.


- For bright silver, platinum, or steel (or gunmetal) I will use a black base.

- For bronze I will generally use a medium brown.

- For gold, I use 'leather' (sort of a tan colour)

- For copper I use orange or brown.


To easily alter the tint of your metal, you can use different base colours.

Say I want my silver to have a bluish tinge ... then I use blue as the base; or I want my gold to look a little firey ... I'll use red


Recently, I painted a barbarian with a big sword. Well, my barbarian looked dirty and gruff, but his sword was bright polished silver - It looked quite out of place. So I thinned down a bit of bronze and did a light wash - instant aged metal.


You can mix your metallics to get different shades:

- Pink Gold ? mix gold and copper.

- Dull copper? mix copper with some bronze, and it dulls it down.

- If you want platinum, you can make it by starting with silver and mixing in a touch of gold. (at least, that's what my Ral Partha platinum paint looks like)



Also, if you want to stick to metallic paint to shade and highlight your metallics, think of silver as your white and steel as your black.




Just for fun, you can keep tarnish in mind.

Silver gets a black tarnish.

Platinum I believe is white.

Copper gets a fun green colour (like the statue of liberty!).


Hope this helps!



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If ya want to do an aged/well worn brass it's relatively easy:


Basecoat in black,

Paint the area with boltgun metal/dark steel (yes using steel to get brass, ain't painting fun?),

Glaze the steel with dark brown ink or wash (I prefer the ink since it dries shiny),

Add your shading with more of the same brown ink/wash,

Highlight with brass (broader strokes),

Highlight the very edges with gold.


Poof, you have brass that's tarnished and dull except for the areas that are regularly worn by use which is nice and bright. ::D:


Heh, and to think I found this trick when I was working on getting a rusted look. ::P:

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I guess I just have to be different. I usually paint my metals on top of white. I use the Testor's Acryl Fantasy paints, which have very fine metalic grains. Then I glaze the metal with Tamiya Smoke. It's a very nice look when I get done. I'll drybrush a little silver on top.


I've also painted metallics on top of a base of Vallejo Hull Red to get a rusted appearance.


I'll have to try painting other color metalics on colored basecoats. It sounds like a very nice effect.

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I don't know why people paint over black.


If i paint say a knight in armour,

I'll prime the dude in white then I indiscriminately paint it with a really

thinned black paint. Then, I use a clean brush soaked with water and

"wetbrush" it so all the raised areas are white. After that, I thin my

metal paint and paint over. I usually get a really smooth and really

shiny metal surface with this technique.

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