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... The larch?
Heh. No, but I want to try something very different from my preferred style in order to branch out and try new things. I recently watched Coco (um... several times) and took a liking to the alebrijes, especially Pepita. I really want Reaper to make a Pepita. So this is my way of showing how fun it could be!
The plan: A chibi lion with patterns like the traditional Oaxacan Alebrijes. This means fun bright colors and an attempt at making a piece look like wooden folk art. It can be done!
First step, research.
...and my personal favorite:
Perfect! I wanted to practice red anyway. I ended up choosing red shadow, dragon red, big top red, seoni scarlet, volcanic orange, marigold yellow and sun yellow as my colors.
Second step is to pick a mini.
I supported Impact's kickstarter quite awhile ago and almost forgot I had this fellow. It's the Venetian Lion.
I set forth in an effort to prep the mini.
Um... it took a lot of prep. I decided to go ahead and attach one wing at the risk of making the body harder to paint. I sanded for about half a day then filled in all the bubbles and sculpted one set of claws. Er, I'm hoping their QC has improved since the kickstarter, because this piece took almost a day to prep. Oddly, I think the 3D print went into the mold un-sanded and with texture, because the large surfaces had a texturing I associate with those prints. It took several layers of sealer to smooth.
But, I finally got him primed. Isn't he cute!
Next, I basecoated with red shadow. why red shadow, you ask? Because red is awful at coverage because of its translucency. So, basecoat with a red brown. This will save you frustration down the road.
Next, layer with dragon red. Leave a few areas of the red shadow as deepest shadows. Here's where I had to decided to commit to the wooden/statue route, because a real lion would have a darker back and a pale belly, whereas a figure in top-down light would be the opposite.
Still not red? Never fear! Also, put a lot of layers of each step. Lots and lots of layers. Next step big top red.
Next, seoni scarlet. I like this color. It's super intense. Very shiny. Except it's matte, but you know what I mean.
Boom! Now we're in the red zone.
Now, I need eyes. A miniature is lifeless until we add eyes. I like doing them early because they often help guide the rest of the project.
I basecoated the eyes with marigold yellow. Then shaded the edges with volcanic orange.
Then I added some sun yellow to the center. Even a chibi eye can afford some shading, otherwise the socket looks too flat.
After that, I drew in the iris shape.
I used red shadow and added a pupil of nightshade purple.
When I was happy with the shape and balance, I filled in the eye with some terra nova tundra and more of the yellows.
Excellent! I also mixed a bit of linen white into the yellow just at the edge of the iris ring. Here's a front view:
Last step in eyes if adding the white reflection. I used pure white for contrast.
So he's sort of a demonic cute lion. It could work, right?
Then I wanted to try out wing patterns. For the last 3 days I've been wanting to get to the fun part, so I forged ahead and rushed to this step. As it turns out, that was an error, but it worked out in the end. I think.
Ok, the key to freehand is breaking down a pattern into something simple. I started with circles.
Filled in the circles and added some teardrop lines.
added some more lines.
and on and on...
Until I felt like I was getting closer to pattern. It was then I realized the wing looked way to flat and dull. I needed more shading. What I should have done was make the feather lighter near the origin to add more contrast. So I glazed over the pattern. I'll just have to pick it back up again after I'm done with the shading.
Here's the wing with the shading. I'll touch it up a bunch, then rework the pattern. But I think I like it better with the change in contrast. We'll see. I can always paint over it. Sigh. That will teach me to skip to the fun stuff.
More later! As always, feel free to ask questions!
By Chris Palmer
And friend and I split a pledge from the recent Killer Rabbits Kickstarter from Skull and Crown, which launched a range of rabbit miniatures based on the margin art of medieval manuscripts. It arrived earlier this month, and I've been working on them the last two weeks to get them cleared off the painting desk before Bones 4 arrives.
Here are the results. Done to a tabletop quality.
I finished a number of random miniatures up this past week or so and thought I'd throw them on here as a batch of bad guys.
First up is this killer rabbit from Skull and Crown. This is from their recent kickstarter for bunnies from the margins of medieval manuscripts. This is the 3rd one of these I've painted and I'm still trying to find a scheme I like. But that's ok because I went in for a rather large group of these guys so I'm sure I'll come up with something good before I run out of them.
Next up are an Oldhammer goblin from Impact and a barrel mimic from Wizkids. Don't know why, but they seemed like they'd enjoy one another's company while I was painting them up.
And finally, here's one of the ogres from bones 3 (77455). My group has already run into a pack of ogres from that kickstarter and narrowly survived. What they don't know is I have a second set. So next time they run into a pack of ogres it will be twice as big. I'm certain they will appreciate that.
I also finished the green head on a certain 5 headed dragon. But that's still a long way from being complete.
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