Sunday, July 19, 2015

Priming woes

Now that it's settled and I've decided to avoid washes and inks and just go with the three-color method from here on out, I was eager to prime some more figures and get to it.

I decided to try some brush on primer since spraying can be something of a mess. I had bad luck with the Humbrol #33 enamel paint I used previously: it was so old I couldn't get it to mix. So I decided to try to a flat black enamel paint from the hardware store.

It mixed up easily but stunk to high heaven. I wore a mask and opened the sliding glass door, but I still got tremendous headache that lasted about 24 hours. At first the enamel paint went on too thickly. So I cut it with the Gamsol thinner I had. For some reason the thinned paint dried shiny!

Oh, well. Into the paint stripper. Sadly, my old stripper of choice Dawn Power Dissolver has been discontinued. I ended up buying some industrial strength Simple Green. Soon they are going to know me on a first name basis down at the local hardware store.

After that fail, I decided to go back to spray primer so I bought another can of Duplicolor primer. My first go with it I had difficulty getting it to spray into the harder to reach areas. I had done the obvious thing and placed my figures on a cardboard box outside to spray them. Upon further research I found this interesting video tutorial on priming. So I decided to give it a go - with a mask, unlike that yahoo.

I bought a 36" piece of 5/8" square poplar and cut it into 12" sections. Now I can blue-tac my figures onto the end and spray away at them from almost any odd angle.

I've made one modification since I took these photos. The blue-tac didn't stick so well to the porous, rough-cut wood at the ends of the sticks. So I've nailed on some polycarbonate furniture disks to give the blue-tac something to stick to. Last thing I need is a freshly primed figure taking a dive into the dirt...

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Finally at it again!

Well, it's been a long time.The family moved across country again and I started a new job. With all that going on I've only just now dug my hobby box out of the garage and gotten back to painting my poor neglected band of wee Scotsmen.

One of my motivations was that now that I'm back in Los Angeles, I've found some SAGA gamers much closer to me. The shop is only bout 15 minutes away - as opposed to the 2.5 hour drive I had back in Florida.

So I decided to take another crack at getting my 4 point Scot's warband completed. Since I'm still new to this hobby, I do fancy a bit of an experiment now and again. For my next batch of three figures, I decided to try the painting method described in Saxon Dog's Painting Guide (available as a .pdf if you ask him nicely).

I'll summarize the approach for those not curious enough to request the doc:

  1. Prime with white spray paint
  2. Wash the figure with black wash 
  3. Paint your base color
  4. Apply a highlight
  5. Wash with brown wash
  6. Re-highlight (with the same color as the first highlight)

I guess I'd consider this a Hybrid method. Not as point and shoot as the Army Painter dip method. Not quite as elaborate as the Three Colour method. Somewhere in between.

The idea is that you can get the "black line" look without it being as hard to see the details with a black-primed figure. But I found the black lining to be inconsistent. In some spots it wasn't very dark at all. In some spots the wash dried almost white.

Unlike Saxon Dog who used GW washes, I used the Army Painter inks. Lots of blogs have tested the various washes and inks. Like this one here.

The results:

Yes, I still need to do the bases and the javelins.

What I learned:

I really don't like washes. They always makes things look to dirty or muddy for my taste. I think the washes were helpful on the hair though and might use them again for that.

Keep paint thin (but not too thin). Initially I was too lazy to clean and use my wet palette. I found my paints got goopy on me while I painted (slowly). The wet palette really is your friend.

I really like the da Vinci Restauro 3/0 brush I got. I may have to get more of them.

So, I guess it's back to the Three Colour Method for me. Unless I decide to dabble with VeronaKid’s Shaded Undercoats Tutorial.