For Fembruary, this is more like it! And yes, I’m painting anything I have prepped instead of attacking that pile of Indomitus sprues… But also as a wonderful excuse, (not that one is needed, painting something its an achievement by my book) but still, I needed to test out those GW Contrast paints I got… Just five, for the the price of a kidney. And once tested, not all that great… It’s a nice way to get a height value adjusted base-coat in one stroke… But they only work as intended over a white or very clear base, and the ones I tried don’t work well over a zenithal highlight, but they are very nice color filters, like the old GW Inks, but with a more gel-like medium. I painted with them the base of the skin tone (Guilliman Flesh), the mucky green (Plaguebearer Flesh) and the dress (Shyish Purple) they all needed other conventional layer or base paints on top, to convince me… But the result was indeed “contrasty”… Without using those I’m certain my saturation would have fallen along the way, so while I’m not running to get any more of those anytime soon, they will find a place on my palette.
The Others, Seven Deadly Sins game, published expansions for each of the sins, this Controller character came from the Greed box, and I got it, with three of its titular demons, one controller and a Lust demon, plus three small Greed demons for like 15€ out of ebay… And it was not won through snipping the bet, but that was actually the “Get it now” price… so wow, just had to! Plus they kind of answer the question for me of; “What would a Nurgle possessed Tyranid look like?”
A single dude I had as bare metal from times of old… An experiment on browns and maybe a little delay on the prepping of a bunch of plastic minis ahead. Never thought a tribe of rat herders could stand much of a chance in that brutal underworld of the hive-city’s gangs, but in my mind, he has a place as a “lucky” encounter in my “pretend game” of Space Crusade… I know Blackstone Fortress is a thing… Well, just like that… But it’s different, and it exist only in my mind!
I… I really don’t think this is what the spirit of “Fembruary” is about… like at all… Not made better by the fact that this is intended as an objective token! This might rather be objectification at its finest, I’m afraid… The line is in fact famous by their scantly clothed heroines and foes. But with that appealing if questionable taste of theirs, they also dabble in some great body-horror abominations of a more mature nature than anything, say… Games Workshop would ever dream to produce… Slaanesh or not. And within reason, I guess, in this trying times of double standards that would make an Inquisitor question his path in life, I painted… this… composition… of… Well damsels in distress… Captive, naked… and to make matters worse, used to be impregnated and their offspring taken by some demonic abomination… with an after-mouth of tentacle Hentai. Just wrong. But at the same time… Who wouldn’t face danger to rescue such delicate and wronged ladies!? Who wouldn’t admit to put more attention than usual to the curves, slopes and volumes than you would to other models…? Guilty or not, the pleasure of painting them was short lived… They got painted way faster than the paint on them took to dry, and it took about two hours to finish them.
Finished this bad boys! It was a full circle back to Dark Angels, in my journey to test and decide which color to paint the marine side of the Indomitus 40K 9th edition starter set. But not the usual dark green, gold and red like the Emperor little helpers… I stumbled across this awesome tutorial for grimdark white armor by SprayBlack Studios and had to test it out… with some twists.
This was supposed to be a test… But fell in love with the process, and they ended up being the closest thing I’ve ever achieved to be called “display quality”… (Ok, I’m proud of my Kitbashed Knight and the Great Unclean One… but one it’s huge and original, the other an spectacular sculpt by itslef) Many of the things I found work for this guys were my second try after testing on the blue, black and red marines I painted across the weeks prior… Stuff like glaces, edge highlights… and a conscious attemt at starting building volumes and lights with the paints, in a controlled way beyond my life of washes and drybrush highlights.
And since I’ve learnt from others, the least I can do it’s to share how I achieved this… Helps as a repository of what I did, and hopefully anybody out there can get a spark of inspiration to take their craft a step further, or even better, share with me what I could do better!
I started by having a collage of reference pictures of the squad under a heavy directional light, with the “above the sholder”, almost backlit angle I felt served the sculpt better, averaging it, so that the five would be attacked from the same angle, but at different rotations that suited best each mini… I never went back much to look at them, but there they were, frozen in time in case I had the need.
I used a transparent White Montana spray can over the Chaos black primer, to zenithal highlight them, mimicking the desired angle of light.
After protecting the priming with a coat of satin and matt varnishes, I gave the minis an oil wash with turpentine and a mixture of Black, Dark Siena, Transparent Red and Blue, as per the recipe.
Once the wash dried I used a microfiber cloth (a soft bag to store glasses) dumped in turpentine to clean away the areas I wanted lit. Looking back at them, they looked pretty well at this stage, but I felt like I wanted more contrast, and a richer white to start from…
I spent some time reinforcing those lights, using overspray of white again and some glaces of Vallejo Offwhite and some drybrush where I was sure the shapes would work for that… After watching a bunch of Artis Opus videos, I discovered I was doing a lot of that wrong… or could be done better. (stuff like “activating” your brush with some water, and using your hand to measure the wetness of the hairs by temperature were small gamechangers) I also reinforced the shadow area with a Nadir spray of semitranparent Black from Montana.
After painting too soon the red of the eyes I washed the whole thing with AK Interactive Track Wash… and yet again picked the light areas using the cloth. And for all those hairs that I don’t have to deal with by not using cotton ever again, I went a screwed myself by deciding to magnetize the arms when they were more than half way painted… And plastic drill chips… that… gets everywhere… and it sticks. The rest… I just painted, I guess…
With all painted I felt pretty attached to the result… And the Streaking Grime with another abrasive wipe of white spirit was looking dicy and I begun to think the test needed a test by itself… I grabbed the old Librarian I had “flat-painted” an aeon ago, full of chips (real chips, mind you… very convincing if a bit “out of scale”) So I “Grimed” him first… and it gained… a lot! So I took a deep breath and bit the bullet of having more highlights to do ahead, but more convinced that recipe was going to elevate the paintjob with a lot of grimdark unifying atmospheric enamel splattered all over. Also tried the energy blade (I had changed for a Katana back then) using four colors of spray cans… The final one I used just three. (the fourth spitted all those dots) A deep blue base, that could be painted with brush, and then just a quick-fast gradient of Teal, followed by transparent white.
I retouched and added the last details… Like a subtle OSL coming from the blade, by stippling a glace with my “big drybrush”.
It was then time to base, matt-varnish and call it done… Except those barrels… I need a pin-vise to drill those!
And now, thanks to Azazel, I know there is an obscure, almost forgotten chapter called The Mentor Chapter (later rebranded as Mentors) that could suit this scheme!
That’s a mouthful… An Infinity Game support character figure I got to finish while some layers of varnish were drying on my current test work on some Terminator Astartes… She’s an OOP metal figure. They look so small compared to GW’s… And at the same time, so much better proportioned!
Now I was cooking with fire! I had starting to get comfortable with glazing and got a better grasp of what oil-washes could go on top of what… And red was way easier to work with, and not loose track of saturation and contrast than black. I tried NMM with some true metalic accents, and realized gold could be alright, after all…
My last and best! But… I wasn’t yet convinced… I think I don’t like Blood Angels. I like the red, alright… But the lore I find pretty lame, with the whole in-your-face vampire angels vibe they got.
So chasing another color that would look good, and even be canon, I stumbled upon the Black Templar chapter… I could get away with no gold, and black with white accents… some red accents fitting! But painting black was as they say… hard… or more job than it’s worth. I tried NMM kind of for the first time, here… And although an oil-wash completely screwed the face as it looks in the end, it did look great at one time, and learnt a lot there, too. The end result it’s pretty dark, and at the time, I think my best painted miniature… and that’s a healthy trend I’d like to keep up!
So I made myself a self-present this Christmas… Wife was out of time and I went to the local Alita hobby store and grabbed what ended up being a board-game (I thought it was something more wargamy) by “Cool mini or not”… The Others: Seven deadly sins. I’ll never play the game, but fell in love with the miniatures which I knew of, having looked before for cool Nurgle proxy miniatures before… At fifty percent discount, it came with an expansion box of heroes, and altogether I still have 24 posessed civilians that could pose as awesome poxwalkers or zombies of a dystopian future… for another time. And all those heroes… All very different from each other, a vampire, werewolf, mercenaries… And a bunch more evil dudes that look like Hellraiser cenobites.
But those demon models couldn’t wait to paint! It meant a pause to my Astartes experiments and going back to a loose mode I got so familiar with in the last year… They got painted in no time, and helped me experiment with contrasted spray base-coats and since my daughter gifted me a mini-UV-torchlight… I played with some accents on a spectral wavelength range any bee visiting my home will certainly appreciate.
Long time… But I’ve been getting dirty. Got a bunch (for my low output) of stuff to share!
Situation… On top of a bunch of Nurgle Demons, Death Guard and some Infinity models pending, I shared with a friend a box of Indomitus. I got the marine side… And as much as they were my gateway into the hobby, the loyalist Imperial Astartes aka Space Marines, I don’t feel I’ve ever nailed… I got some painted years ago, and tried some canon Dark Angels from de DV box six years ago… to an underwhelming result.
So accepting this guys need to be somewhat of a clean job to meet my own expectations, but keeping it grimdark… kinda, sorta, I decided to test some techniques and colors to decide how I would tackle those huge new Primaris models… I suppose they might be somewhat easier, bein as they are, Ogre sized…?
Not a fan of any “official” Chapter… Thought about it though, because in case I need it, and since they are not going to be crazy custom conversions (methinks) they could eventually have more resell value if I kept it canon… But what I really wanted was a color scheme that appealed to me, and I could achieve… and that looked good on those sci-fi toy soldiers! And having two armies painted to eventually play at home would be really cool… So I intend to paint them all, and with luck, have my friend paint his Necron side, too… Once Plague Restrictions ease so we can paint together again.
So my first instinct was blue… So kind of Ultramarines was the idea. I grabbed two Veterans and two clearly Dark Angel characters from the Dark Vengeance set and went all oil-paint on those transitions… highlighting and details with acrylics, with enamel effects on top. A lot of work and it kind of gives a teal vibe that it’s certainly not Ultramarine… They look more Alpha Legion than anything! And I hated painting that gold… and it doesn’t even look good. But I got a fondness for intentional transitions that I think it moved me forward! They don’t even show on the final result, but at a certain point the looked very crisp!