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Creature of the Blood Reef 77189

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Painted this guy while practicing my drybrushing and paint blending.  I think he turned out pretty cool, although I accidently stripped a little paint off the base because I touched it too soon after adding the matte varnish!  Lesson learned: let them sit a bit after spraying varnish.  As always, I appreciate advice and critiques. Thanks!





Edited by jonaas33
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Well, I wouldn't want to run into that guy in a dark alley, that's for sure!




1) The figure looks like it's falling over backwards, or perhaps leaping back in surprise.  It's probably too late to correct now, but for future work with Bones minis, you can reshape them a bit before painting by dunking them in a cup of boiling water for a bit -- about a minute or so.  Then fish them out with a spoon so you don't burn your fingers, quickly push them into the position you want, and then dunk them into a cup of ice water.  Let them sit in the ice water until they're cooled all the way through.  They may shift back a little towards their original position.  If I'm making large changes, I'll sometimes do it twice or more, waiting a good long time between dunkings.


In this case, I'd have boiled him and bent him forward at the ankles to make him look like he's pouncing forward.  It would make him look a bit more threatening, and probably less likely to tip over.


2) The better the pictures you can take, the easier it is to give you detailed feedback on your painting.  To that end:


Learn to crop your photos.  Remove most of the surrounding area and leave just the mini, plus a little bit of buffer space at the edges.  We generally don't need the whole scene -- the mini is the focus, so remove the extraneous bits.  Cropping can be done in any image editor, even something as basic as Microsoft Paint.  I generally use Paint.net or Photoshop.


Take a look at this thread for nice backdrops you can take photos against:



Just print out one or two of them in color and you'll be good to go.  I recommend against folding them -- put a can or something behind it to support it and just curve the paper up without folding.  That will eliminate the line, which is a bit visually distracting.  I printed mine on vinyl at a local print shop so it'd last longer, which cost a few bucks but was worth it since I've been able to use the same backdrop for a couple years now.


Finally, see if you can get more even lighting.  Having sharp unidirectional lighting throws dark shadows in one direction and may obscure some of the details in the recesses of the mini.  After struggling with getting consistent lighting for my photos, I finally broke down and bought a Newhouse Lighting NH5C-BLK 6W LED Small Clamp Light Stick on Amazon for about twenty bucks.  It's got a strip of about a dozen bright white LEDs spread out across about a foot long stick on a gooseneck.  When I'm taking photos, the multiple light sources ensure everything is fully lit and that there are few visible shadows.


If you don't want or can't afford a light just for photographing minis, just take whatever lamp you're using and aim it at yourself rather than directly at the mini.  Let the light bounce off of you, then onto the mini.  Because it's indirect light, the shadows will be much less noticeable.  That's what I did for the first couple years.


Hope this helps.

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Thanks! I really appreciate the advice, I'll definitely keep that in mind for the future! I'm typically just taking the pics with my tablet, but I'll look into printing off some backdrops and being more mindful of the lighting. That one was just taken in my basement, so I can definitely improve there!


I'm probably just going to cut the base off of that guy at some point, but I'll use that boiling water trick for sure.


Thanks again!

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