Sunday, July 31, 2016

The Lavender Paladin

I originally started working on this Sandra Garrity sculpt at Marcon.  This was a more challenging piece, as some of the details were quite small.

To keep the long flowing cloak more interesting, I tried to create a number of different color and saturation variations.  As you can see, some parts are a more intense, warm purple, which transition to a more muted blue.  I also made darker and midtone blue shades to compliment these colors.

I used the Reaper clear and liner paints to tint and shade most of these colors.  While those paints have a very intense pigmentation, they are also more translucent.  When combined with water or even materials such as glaze medium or flow improver, you essentially create a very nice glaze of your own!

I will be demonstrating this principle in a few classes at Reapercon later this year.  The use of liner paints is well documented in my painting videos.  Those liner paints are also excellent for freehand work!  Be sure to see me in the dealer's room at GenCon!  I will definitely be demonstrating these techniques before your very eyes :-)

Saturday, July 30, 2016

The Swamp Rats

With the four new factions created in the recent Wild West Exodus kickstarter expansion came not just a huge batch of new miniatures... but new battlegrounds!

Taking their rebellion to the swamps and bayous, the Confederacy conducts a guerrilla campaign, striking from out of nowhere, only to return to their nearly invisible hideouts once the assault is complete.

While their technology might lack the advancement of their Union foes, they can make the most of it.  Here and older blackhoof, precursor to the iron horse and other bikes, is used as light support for those hit and run attacks.

I'm looking forward to painting more of the Confederate Rebellion, as I can contrast the burning glow of the RJ-1027 against even more muted camouflage colors!

I will also get a chance to do more swamp bases!

The first of many... so stay tuned for much more.

Friday, July 29, 2016

Rise of the Machines

While painting tiny Frenchmen and tanks for Flames of War is certainly very different from anything else that I have done in the past, working on even smaller CAV figures is truly unique!

These offer an interesting opportunity to experiment with a wide variety of weathering techniques on a truly small scale.  Reading the main rule book also described some fun possibilities as well.

The holographic camo patterns will be especially neat when seen along with terrain, as the vehicle itself attempts to blend in with its surroundings.

I'm painting up a variety of hover tanks, ground vehicles and other mechs.  Some of these are light scout mechs... and others are massive behemoths!  You will see one of those very soon. :-)

The kickstarter has been under way for a few weeks now, so be sure to check it out!

Here's a link to the campaign:

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Looking for Trouble

While I was prepping a TON of Reaper miniatures to use as demonstration material in the GenCon booth (#2861), I ran across this assassin figure, and decided to finish it off.  It seemed to be just the right figure for the ruined Celtic temple theme base!

I have a number of BONES minis that I will have on hand to demonstrate various techniques, although the Shaded Basecoat and glazing techniques will be the most prominent.

I'm hoping that folks will stop by to chat and watch me work, as they have the last few years.  Think of it as a very tiny Fort Wappel in a massive jungle of craziness!  I will also have the videos there on USB drives, as I did last year.  Of the 53 total videos, 12 of them are all about various basing techniques that I have developed over the last 16 years of miniature painting.

It's hard to believe that for the first few years, we did nothing but gravel and static grass!  My how things have changed.

I'm going to try to make a number of different bases to have in the booth at GenCon.  At the very least, they might give folks some new thoughts on how to approach basing.  This is not a very difficult method at all, and you can see how much it adds to the overall look and feel of the miniature itself.

With just a small amount of extra effort, every miniature can become a tiny diorama... you don't have to have a massive plinth, plaque or bust :-)

She's also here:

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Some New Stripes

The 5-6 hour marathon demo session also included plenty of experimentation.  It can get pretty interesting doing things for the very first time under such circumstances! :-)

One of my goals for that day was to see if I could do some quick camo pattern masking on a T-34, using only the materials at hand.

The tank had been getting coats of the primer painting along with everything else, working up to white primer.  I got that shading as light as I could go, setting up some darker green stripes later.

Some final highlights were also applied to the CAV mechs at the same time.

Panzer and T-34 together... oh my!

I had seen this very wonderful pattern on a Flames of War version, and it seemed more unique.  I really liked the deep greens running through the pattern, and I knew that the warmer rust and mud weathering would be a fantastic contrast to the cooler blueish greens.

The only masking stuff I had available at the moment was the blu-tac that I use to hold vehicles in place inside my travel cases.  This would have to do for the time being!

It was pretty new, so I figured that it would not be too sticky.  There certainly was not any embedded paint in it.

It is hard to show in these images, but I intentionally concentrated the spray closer to certain edges of the masked sections in order to create harder or softer edges.

I didn't want it to be completely uniform.  Also, I attempted to get a bit of shading by hitting those parts with more green (the advantage of having the white underneath!).

It wasn't only myself who eagerly awaited the removal of the blu-tac... an anxious audience wanted to see what would happen as well!

Lo an behold, it was exactly what I had hoped for!  You can see the distinctly different types of edges... some soft, others sharper.

The 'crossbar' stripes were added afterwards.  Some of the thinnest will probably be done with a brush.

So, a few simple cross strips really did the trick!

A good deal of weathering will be added to this, as well as snow.  I'm really looking forward to that process.  I will try to show you that as it happens.

This is where things get interesting, as I will be testing out some new materials from AMMO.  I have a host of different products to test and experiment with.

To add to the experimentation, a number of decals will be used.  Most of you probably know that the AMMO products are oil based, and that is a major departure from what I have done for so long.

Many of these materials will be similar to existing techniques that I have been doing with powders and acrylic paints, but it's going to take a while to get used to them.

It is very likely that I will discover all kinds of crazy and unintended uses for them. :-)

Here's another peek at what I was trying to match.  While the picture does not show it, the two greens are actually the same.

I was working on a number of things at the same time, as you can see from this image.  When I am at my own home studio, 3-5 times this amount will be under way at once. I have found that it is the best way to utilize these new tools and materials.

In the hours after the demo, I did additional painting and detail work on the Laffly trucks and the Hanomag too.  Decals will be placed, and then all the weathering experiments will take place!

Stay tuned, as I want to share this big new journey with all of you.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Oozing Goodness

This bit of Nurgly goodness comes from Raging Heroes.  It's actually one of their original miniature line, prior to the Toughest Girls in the Galaxy line.

There's a lot going on with this piece!  Bodies all over the place, and plenty of corruption!

I tried to do a number of different color combinations to portray that decay and corrosion.  Pinks and greens were mixed together, grayish blue next to burnt orange, and so on.

I especially had fun with the Secret Weapon base.  As you can see, it is very 'deep set', which allowed me to pile in lots of realistic water (also from Secret Weapon).  I mixed some of the fluorescent yellow with the realistic water to make it seem even more toxic.

After a few layers, it seems as if he is standing in a sewer like mix of gore and other nasty things.

Very appropriate for Nurgle!  I also did a little more with glowing elements than previous versions.  I painted this guy for the Bloody Mess painting video.  That one has plenty of gore!!

I'll have that and all the other videos at GenCon, so check it out at booth #2861, and also at the Badger Airbrush booth!!

He's also here:

Monday, July 25, 2016

Painting Blitz

It's been about a week since I posted the original scratch sculpt images, so I hope that it was worth the wait!  Obviously, the original intent was to paint in most of the more complex textures such as the windows, doors, vents and so on.

That saved a LOT of sculpting time!

This was also my first foray into the waterslide decal realm.  The Baltic cross insignia on the doors were painted by hand, since I didn't have the larger set of decals with various sizes.

I now have the full collection of truck decals, which will be great fun on the horde of Blitzes to come!

The balsa wood sections worked out very well, as the wood really absorbed the paint and the subsequent weathering powder mixes so well.  Who would have thought painting actual wood would make it so easy to make it look like it was made of wood! :-)

These images show that I was able to hide the lack of tread sculpting on the main wheels with the clumps of weathering powders.  Even better, painting the treads on the spare wheel was very easy, and went very quickly!

I will be doing future posts on this type of weathering like you see in the bed of the truck.  This is layers of powders and pigment fixer, alternating light and dark powders.

Also, I learned that plopping clumps of 'dry' powders into a pre soaked surface can create a more natural spread to the batches of mud and dirt.  This was done with Secret Weapon products, but soon I will be experimenting with AMMO products, such as their heavy mud and spatter materials.

I am very eager to see what these will look like!

This roundabout of ground level views shows all the layers of weathering, decals, and painted on textures.  Again, not too shabby for less than 2 hours of sculpting!

The only real size reference that I had was one of my Laffly trucks.  I was shocked when I saw this side by side with the real Warlord Opel Blitz!  Using only a few images that I grabbed from the web, I had matched most of the dimensions exactly or within fractions of inches.

Next, there will be some 'official' Opel Blitz trucks, in a variety of  color schemes.  There will be some DAK, winter and late war German versions as well, so stay tuned!!