Tuesday, April 30, 2019

True Sons

As most of you know, the key part of every army is your Color Test figure.  This is where you establish not just the color scheme for your army as a whole, but where you can figure out what is viable in terms of effects with the time you have to complete the project.

Episode two of Army Painting Series 8 is up on the Patreon Page now, and it includes one more Color Test figure.  I think this one is even more critical, given the nature of the Warriors Sons, and those crazy Rainbow cloaks!

I try to keep things as simple as possible, using a few basic Reaper colors, such as the clear and liner paints. The one specialty item is the Peal White, which you have seen me use in previous YouTube tutorials: https://youtu.be/6aj98FOCJPA

As I work through this color test figure, I try to keep track of how much time something takes.  While this time will be shortened in the process of assembly line painting the rest of the unit, it can still let me know if the look I am trying to get will take an exorbitant amount of time.

I think this is a major factor in the partially painted army syndrome.  The project begins with anticipation, excitement, and expectations.  When those are not met, or when the realization hits that those effects could take a REALLY long time to create, the project grinds to a halt.

My goal with each Army Painting series is to avoid this problem, giving you the tools to get those effects you want in a reasonable time, but even help you to figure out if you want to try those in the first place.

In each series, I conduct a discussion on these points.  It is hard to believe that this is Series 8, especially when you consider that each series is 5 episodes, and usually 12 hours running time.  All of the other tutorials that I do each month also feed into the Army Painting series, where I can isolate one particular technique or color.

I feel very comfortable in saying that there are very few, if any sources that can get you almost 100 different videos the instant you sign up for a pledge.

You can sign up on the Patreon Page now at the Army Painting level and get all the previous series as well as other tutorials!!  Here's a link: www.patreon.com/JamesWappel

Thursday, April 25, 2019

The Sorcerer's Fire

The second installment of Painting Nocturna Models is now up on the Patreon Page and ready for viewing!

The two episodes of The Sorcerer's Fire are about 4 1/2 hours total, and to covers the entire process of painting the double Object Source Lighting effect!

It is always a challenge to paint multiple light sources, but even more so when those light sources are very different colors.

You also have to consider the colors of the miniature itself, such as the pants, cloak, tunic and so on.  It is vital to make those complimentary to the effect that you want to achieve, but they still have to make sense as a clothing item as well.

This is discussed at length throughout the videos.

You can get a hint in this image of the striking difference between the two light sources, even though they are being painted on the same section of the figure... just on opposite sides!

With the floating rocks and billowing cloaks, hair and tunic posing even more challenges, we have to think of those as opportunities instead.

I explain my color choices on the clothes, and go over the strategy behind them.  While the cloak is technically a cooler color, I still highlight it with a muted warm tone to keep it on the warmer side overall, and act as a secondary type of contrast to the much more saturated blue glow.

The pants would be considered a war color as tan, but it is far more muted and cooler than the fire glow.  Some greens were added in that area to accentuate that subtle contrast.

This image shows what a logistical nightmare the cloak could pose, since the undulations are very numerous, and they are also at different "heights".  This meant that some areas of the cloak would be in 'shadow' from the blueish glow, but still need highlights from the ambient light.

I have a number of these large scale figure tutorials under way, including a series from Big Child Creatives (those will be mostly painted with oils).  These will all be available to my patron on the Patreon Page.

If you want to see how this miniature was done, as well as many more elaborate pieces, be sure to sign up now to the Patreon Page and watch these very complex figures/color schemes be broken down into something far more manageable!  Here's a link to the page: www.patreon.com/JamesWappel

Monday, April 22, 2019

Ghost of the North

I have another tutorial up on the YouTube channel... this time covering a subject I have been asked to talk about dozens of times. That is, painting white.  So, I thought that Ghost from the Song of Ice and Fire miniatures game would be a perfect example!  Here's a link to the video: https://youtu.be/dB4qtag5r9g

There were not a lot of colors used, but mixing those few together created an endless array of options to create subtle transitions...

I even finish things off with another round of Crushed Glass basing from Secret WeaponMiniatures

Here's the final result!

I have 3 other Song of Ice and Fire wolves prepped and ready for more videos.  Those will be available to the patrons on my Patreon Page.

People have a lot of trouble getting interesting tones in white... it tends to be very bland.  With wolves in particular, "white" fur often has a lot of yellow in it.  Also, the blue sky reflecting off the snow can make the fur seem blue, or even purple!

If you join the Patreon Page, you will be able to check out (especially at the Army Painter level), there are close to 100 different videos to see... covering terrain, Oils, Acrylics, NMM, OSL, TMM, you name it!  Here's a link to the page:

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Arcane Basing

The very first Army Painting series was an interesting phase in my journey of creating miniature painting tutorials.  This is the moment where I had to decide what sort of format I would use, and just how I would demonstrate my approach to painting units.  Ultimately I chose to do them in five 2 hour episodes.

As many of you already know, I really love basing, so I figured that it would be a good idea to begin with basing!  Here's an example of one of those episodes:  https://youtu.be/fj2dJEQ3x_c

With the basing complete, I shift to the color test figure.  This is where I decide what kind of effects I want to do on the figures.  I discuss the "Currency of Time", where I keep track of how much time a given effect takes, and how that might effect the overall time of the project.

For example, the champion figure needed a lot of decisions.  Should the "familiar" be glowing... and if it is, should it be a different color.  Ultimately I decided to make it the same color as the magical runes on the bases, since that seemed to make the most sense.

Even choosing which figure goes on which base can have a large impact on your choices.  Since the snake parts of the figure didn't see as detailed or interesting, I definitely wanted to have the glowing effects.  That gave me some options for creating more dimension in areas that did not quite have the cleanest textures.

Where the figure should be placed on the base was also discussed.  These views show you how much of the fantastic design can appear if you place the figure in the right spot.

There was some Non Metallic metals included in the series too.  This is another aspect of the videos, and that is to include as many different techniques as possible.  However, I try to make these less "scary", and treat them like any other effect, like snow bases, freehand, etc.

Pulling together all these different techniques in a cohesive manner is what makes the difference between a nicely painted unit and a pretty amazing one.  I try to tie in all these individual techniques into other stand alone episodes also available on the Patreon Page.  That includes the Dark Sword series, which is now on Episode 13!  These take things like OSL, color theory, etc, and focus them onto just one miniature.

All of those additional tutorials can be seen if you sign up for the $15 Army Painter monthly pledge.  This includes an average of 13-20 hours of tutorials each month!

The Army Painting pledge level is available on the Patreon Page, and Series 8 is well under way!  You can check that out here: www.patreon.com/JamesWappel

Monday, April 15, 2019

The Brain Trust

As much as I love painting the rank and file miniatures from Song of Ice and Fire, I really enjoy painting the Non Combat units, or NCU's.  These are not only very characterful miniatures, they also do a lot in the game itself.

This is probably my favorite aspect of the game and how it plays.  Changing out the NCU's (as well as the unit attachments) can completely transform your army without having to alter your normal combat units at all!

I realize that most people only use 2 of these non combat characters, but I like to have 3.  This lets me cause even more trouble each turn (the NCU's can't be killed), but can even deny the opponent that one space they really need for whatever combo they have in mind.

I can 'waste' an NCU on an area that I don't want, but certainly keep the opponent from jumping on it.  Should they also have 3 of these NCU's, they must now make a very hard choice... do the big combat move on the battlefield, or potentially have a character be left off the political track completely!

I will be doing a lot of tutorials on the various characters that I am painting.  Several of these have already been posted to the Patreon page, but you can also see some other YouTube live sessions here that showcase NCU's:   https://youtu.be/DAU3njr2Qc8

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Skulls, Snow and Blood!

One of my latest tutorials loaded to the Patreon Page showed off the traditional crushed glass snow technique... but with a twist!  This time, I added some blood effects.

You can see those strategically positioned not only on the bases of the figures, but the movement tray as well.

I had been looking forward to testing this out for a while, and it was well worth the wait.  I combined the Bader Airbrush Ghost Tint called Fresh Blood with Green Stuff World's True Blood.  I added a bit of Reaper Red liner for added darkness in the driest areas of the blood pools.

The wonderful aspect of the crushed glass snow is that it is crystalline and transparent.  This means the blood actually 'seeps' into the snow, as it would with the real thing.

This view gives you a great look at the overall effect. This was done for the $10 Basing level pledge on the patreon page, but it was also meant for the backers at the $15 Army Painting level.

Here's a link to the Patreon Page if you are interested in tutorial/experiments such as these.  I have many more experiments on the way, since Green Stuff World sent me a host of new products!

If you want to get a peek at the figures themselves, I have a live session where I was painting them with the Mig Ammo Oilbrushers: