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I often find myself in the same position - wanting to spend less time per mini and more painting quantity. It's a hard balance to find.  Everyone has said some really good points. You'll have much to juggle in which direction to go.  For me, I know my hesitancy in telling you to just knock them out and go for broke.  I also haven't seen your work and don't know how to properly address your question without some kind of foundation.  

 

I do think it's worth bringing up a few things that are just good general input.

 

1.  Enjoy the process.  Speed is the enemy.  Efficiency is speed, but don't mistake speed for an effective way of painting.  

2.  Get your basics down and make sure you have consistency before moving forward.  It's easy to push for new techniques, better supplies, more paints, and the never ending mini hoard you'll accumulate. I'm very guilty of this.  However I'm conscious of it and want to iron out a technique a few times before moving on.  Fumble. Improve. Repeat.

3.  Have your order set: trim, wash, prime, paint, varnish.  (That`s mine but yours might be different).

4.  Don't waste time on details you won't see.  Spending time getting that nook behind the cloak, painting the underbelly that will be shrouded, getting the right shade in that crevice on the back of the foot... these are all areas you have to tell yourself it's not necessary for your use. (I still do them because I'm weak)

5.  Washes can be your friend.  Base coat. Wash. Touch up. Done.  You don't have to put a ton of time into them, but again how "good" is YOUR version of good?

6.  Armies an be great practice to speed things up.  Do a couple, pick the best between them, and then shoot for replicating it over and over.  I did this with Runewars skeletons and it was a great lesson.  You'll find you get a little better (and at times a little careless) as you go. You'll start to see places you avoid or do in different order to avoid bleeding into another area.

7.  Stay to only a few colors!  Picking 5 colors and sticking to them is a challenge, but You'll find mixing them as you go can yield cool results AND keeps your color scheme tied together.  That and you won't feel like your searching for the next color for that thing on the heroes belt, or the weird leather strap.  Just do them the same color and see where it takes you.  Worse that could happen is you just change the color. Best thing is going, "wow. That's not bad." Still feel like it's too close in color to that adjacent thing?  Just add some neighboring paint to that color already on your palette. Boom.  New color and in same color family.

8.  Don't look for shortcuts - look for improvements.  Washing is great,but it doesn't fix a sloppy job.  However it does make it so i didnt have to apply 3 base layers and just needed one that the wash shaded good enough.  

9.  Don't expect praise for fast work.  Just paint. Keep painting.  Get better at finding your pace.  Then dial in your own process.  

 

I'd even go so far as to say a clean work space can make the biggest impact.  Clean, nicely cared for brushes too.  Got light?  It can make getting around your model way easier (faster).  

 

Everyone in here said really good tips.  Many of which I greatly benefit from.  I also recommend posting your work and asking for tips on a specific part of your mini painting. People in this forum are great at giving constructive feedback that not only you gain from, but others too.

 

In summary, pick up your brush and start going. Speed comes with practice and making lots of mistakes. 

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Best piece of advice I had for painting faster was to use the biggest brush possible.  Don't use your size 0 to basecoat that cloak.

 

I have found that a size 1 or even 2 with a sharp point can be used to paint every part of a mini (I sometime go smaller for eyes).  Large areas I'll use a flat.

 

I realised that an ok job can be done in a short time after doing speed paints at RCon.  I didnt have the option to go over, and it forced me to focus on the main areas and not worry about end result.  I was just trying to get everything painted.  And surprise, it looked ok.

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