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Differences between Reaper White and Black Paints?


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Mostly is what the undertone is in the black.  A bluish black, a greenish black, etc.  I don't know off my head what is what.  Also there are more white and black than you mentioned.

Coal Black is a Bluish Black, Black Ink is a black that is more fluid to shade in cracks.

In white there is  Prue White that you mentioned (Bluish White), Spectral white (Lavender White), Linen White (Yellowish White),  Pearl White (Metallic White) and Snowdrift White (another Bluish White)

Those are the Blacks and Whites I have. 

Greys I have going from Dark to light are:Carbon Grey, Military Grey, Cloudy Grey and Ancient Bark (has a bit of Brown hint)

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Thanks for the replies. I did notice the other blacks and whites and actually have some of them. I can see online the differences in color from these compared to dragon white/black. However, I have a difficult time to see the differences between solid white/black, pure white/black, to the dragon white/black from the online images. I just want to know if there is a noticeable difference in application (thanks Baugi) or hue. I assume and it sounds like both the "Dragons" version and "Solid" versions (Bones Ultra) are more suited for base coating and the "Pure" versions for mixing/blending maybe?


The main reason I am asking is to determine if I should get the full painting set #5 of Bones Paint, or pick out specific colors only.

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1 hour ago, akai said:

The main reason I am asking is to determine if I should get the full painting set #5 of Bones Paint, or pick out specific colors only


I would say it depends on your painting style.  If you don't mind mixing some things, pick and choose.  If you just want to grab a bottle of something, get them all.


Personally, I started out getting everything.  Now, I tend to mix a lot more, but still like the convenience of just grabbing a bottle.

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Online images (if you mean the little square colour swatches on the store and stuff like that) are NOT useful to judge from. At most they give you a ballpark hue and value (colour family and how dark or light the paint may be in a very rough sense). So all the online black and white swatches are going to look pretty much like black and white. Reaper used to match the colour swatches pretty well for print catalogues, I'm not sure if they currently still do. But so far as I know they never scanned them in and did what you need to do to colour correct them for a monitor, and even if they had that would look different on your monitor/phone to my monitor/iPad  to the colour corrected monitor used to do it. And that's not even getting into the issue of monitors make colour with light and paints with pigments, so let's just sum it up to say you can't get very precise information about colours from online paint swatches from Reaper or any other company. (There are swatches of fine art paints on Dick Blick and a few other sites that are actual painted swatches of the paints that I consider more useful for buying guides, but still accept that there will be slight differences in how I might perceive that paint colour in person.)

And with colours like black and white in particular, but also with some other colours, you end up with the mass tone vs undertone situation alluded to above. Even swatched and scanned white and black paints are probably going to look virtually identical straight out of the bottle/tube (which is what mass tone refers to.) Where you start to see more differences is as you thin them out and get the undertone. Another difference might be finish. I think one of the Reaper whites has a slight bit more gloss than the others (so satin rather than matte), and that slight factor of reflection can make it seem 'whiter'. Interestingly gloss can make black look darker, as well, though I don't think any of the Reaper blacks has a finish difference.

A super bright/strong white is handy for top final highlights, but there's value to a softer white in that it's easier to mix with other colours without overpowering them and making them chalky. That's why the off whites (Linen, Ghost, there are several more) are pretty popular. Dragon and Sold White I think are a little stronger than Pure White. 

I have a vague memory that Anne has ascribed my love of Solid Black for blending to the fact that it's a bit more of a chromatic black, meaning that it has a bit of colour to it rather than truly being pure black, although it looks pretty black to me even in undertone. (Whereas Black Indigo and Noir Black and some of the other near blacks are very obviously not just black when you start to thin them out.) Many years ago I had some issues with Pure Black cracking occasionally when used full strength out of the bottle for painting base rims. This was likely in part due to me not letting coats dry enough between application, but between that and finding I can get smoother blends with Solid Black, I have a preference for it, but am fine to use Pure Black if that's what's on hand. Dragon Black was a later addition and while I've used it, I haven't used it enough to have strong opinions for or against.

The Pure Black and Pure White were the colours formulated longest ago. Solid Black and Solid White are middle generation, and Dragon Black and Dragon White are among the newest colours that Reaper's paint mixer Anne has developed. She has said that the Bones paint colours represent the pinnacle of her paint mixing knowledge and I believe some include newer technology. I don't know if this includes black and white. Those are pretty standard and time tested pigments in acrylic (and other) paints. The Solid and Dragon pairs are probably slightly better coverage straight out of the bottle since both come from paint lines that were intended to work with fewer coats. But as I mentioned, that can make them tricker to create your own mixes with, so which property you prefer can depend on your typical use for the paints.

I dunno if any of that helps, but there it is for what it's worth. :-> Some day I will try to sit down and swatch out  the blacks and whites, since this question does come up from time to time. In the meantime, I do have painted swatches of the mass and undertone of the core Bones paints and Dungeon Dweller expansions.


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I know this is thread necromancy, but I was wondering the same thing so asked Reaper. This was their response:


"They are different formulas, but all would work fine as black or white paints.  The Solid ones use the HD base so have better coverage (though coverage for white and black usually isn't a huge issue anyway), and the Dragon white/black have a small amount of gloss to them.  You won't really notice the differences unless you buy all three and try them side by side though."


I asked about Pure Black/White as well, though they didn't specifically address those. 

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