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Auberon

Experiments in Painting with Plaid

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As those of you who read the acquisitions thread surely recall, I picked up some craft paints a short while back. Plaid has several product lines but I didn't bother with applebarrel.  I've heard nothing good about it and it is their cheap paint.  The next step up is folk art, which is available off the shelf locally, so I decided to experiment with them..  The idea was to try them out on terrain and see how well they performed.  If they work well enough, it's a pretty substantial cost savings over hobby paint (8oz folk art = 0.5oz hobby in $$) .  Now I don't actually have a lot of unpainted terrain just lying around, but I do have a boxed set still bare bones from the last KS.  One look at the adventurers revealed they were everything I dislike about Bones so they stayed encased in plastic.  The dragon did too, but he may at least get painted someday.  That leaves us with this:

 

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Yup, a pile of terrain.  I took the worst of the mold lines off and tried to flatten them, but a couple of them are going to need a second go in the hot water.  I picked the smallest two and coated them with some gray liner.  I've tried the gray liner on humanoid figures, but didn't like the way skin tones went over it.  I think the brown liner looks better, but grey liner for grey stones should be fine.

 

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The first coat was slightly diluted (4:1) but didn't pass the fingernail test so it got a straight coat of liner for a second pass.  That made it fairly dark but not black.  I slightly diluted the "licorice" and gave it a once over.

 

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Next I gave it a pretty heavy drybrush of "medium gray."  It was at this point I learned why the bottle says to allow for an hour drying time between coats.  This stuff has a lot of retarder in it.  Even with low humidity and a dry well pallet the large drop in the well just dried slightly around the edges during the whole time I was painting.  For the way I'm doing this it wasn't much of an issue, but if you were only painting one small mini you'd have a decision to make.  Wait, speed up the drying, or wet-blend.

 

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After this both pieces got a coat of "steel gray" over most of their area.  I was thinking of it as something of a mid tone for the light areas and a highlight for the shadows.

 

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These paints are slightly translucent when thin so the areas in light were given a second pass of the steel gray to see if that would lighten them further.

 

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Now we run into the first hiccup of the experiment, "wicker white."  While it obviously has some retarder in it, the paint was overall not very well behaved.  With just a little bit on the brush it dried so quickly that it looked like a snowstorm, but any more and it started to smear.  It took my awhile to figure out how best to handle it, but by then my steps were a little too white.  You can see the difference beside the larger piece that has no white.

 

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I decided to knock it back down and tried to make a wash using licorice.  In the end the wash was still a little too heavily pigmented and covered better than I wanted.  You can see how the steps are all the way back to medium grey in darkness but with a slightly different hue.

 

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Next I reapplied some steel grey, though not quite enough I think, before reapplying the wicker white in a more controlled manner.  I found mixing the white 1:1 with water thinned it to a consistency similar to hobby paint and I could apply it with a synthetic #1 brush.  With less of the gray I think it will look darker than the other pieces but I won't know for sure until it's all side-by-side. 

 

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Finally I've moved on to the larger piece and made it about halfway tonight.  The half with the white highlights looks way lighter than the half without but in fact there's not a lot of white used.  Something about white edging and spot highlighting really makes a difference.  Details show up from 6ft away, which is good for terrain.

 

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And that concludes today's experiments with craft paint.  Given that I will just be repeating what I've learned on the other pieces I don't believe there is a need for me to take quite so many pictures.  Maybe I'll take some more when I get to painting the ground and such.  The main takeaway here is that craft paints seem to work just fine for terrain and I can save a bit of money if I ever have a lot to paint.

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Cool, although I was kind of hoping to see some experimenting on painting different plaids.....

 

I didn't create an intentionally confusion topic name.  Nope, not at all.  ::D: In principle plaid isn't that bad to paint, but it does require mixing some colors.

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Cool, although I was kind of hoping to see some experimenting on painting different plaids.....

 

 

That's what I was expecting.

 

I'm not a fan of Apple Barrel or Folk Art at all. But I cut my painting teeth using Delta Ceramcoat hobby paints. I still use them for figures and for terrain. 

 

Delta Ceramcoats were my first metallics, back when I started painting minis in the 1980s.

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Delta Creamcoat is the Plaid product line above Folk Art, but I haven't seen it locally. I remember it on sale where I used to live, but sourcing it now seems unnecessary.  If I need something better than Folk Art for detailing I already have hobby paint.

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