Thursday 29 August 2013

Skink Priest - part 2

I'm off work this week which means I've been able to put a lot of hours into my skink priest. This is just as well because although I'm really enjoying painting this mini, it's turned out to be a far more complicated process than anticipated!

Part of the issue is probably the lack of my usual planning. This means I'm having to resolve the colours I'm using on the run. That's not necessarily a bad thing but it makes for a pretty intense painting experience. 

I'll put together a more detailed write-up on painting this mini next week but, for the time being, here are some work-in-progress pics.

Wednesday 21 August 2013

Skink Priest - part 1

Here we go again, it's time to start painting a new mini! My next 'big' project is Chi-Chi from infamy but I've decided to slip in a smaller mini before I go all gorilla.

There are a few reasons for this not least I just fancy working on a smaller project after the epic timescale spent on those Scourge minis. Also some of my ideas for the colours on Chi-Chi are a bit too similar to those on the scourge so I want to work on something different, rather than just ploughing on with more of the same. This mini will act as a sort of palette cleanser (skink sorbet anyone?). Finally I like this mini and it's just possible that if I can get some serious mini painting time under my belt I might have him ready for the Golden Demons. Painting to a tight deadline will help stop me being tempted to go back and fiddle with the Dark Eldar Dio so the skink is also acting as a diversion until the GDs

If you are in the least bit familiar with this blog I'll forgive you for any doubts you may have over my ability to turn him around in a month! I know I've got them but nothing ventured, nothing gained.

The prep on the mini was pretty standard. Just a matter of cleaning up the mould lines and assembly although he was a bit fiddly in places. I think the fiddle factor was worth it as the finished pose and overall dimensionality of the mini are excellent. Whatever you think about finecast GW can turn out some excellent plastics and seem to be continually refining their production to create more dynamic minis.

I've base coated all the flesh areas with Sotek Green as I'm going for an overall blue/green skin tone and it's a really lovely colour to work with. After all those muted and pastel tones on the Scourge it's a joy to work with some vibrant colour again although I'll have to keep my head and not go too lurid. Ignore the red dots under the eye they will be covered up with something less distracting.

This will be my first mini painted (almost) entirely with the 'new' colours from GW and I'm looking forward to seeing how they work out.

Thursday 8 August 2013

Everyone has to start somewhere!

I needed to get up into my loft last night and in one of the many boxes of forgotten treasures I found this little gem. A real blast from the past - my first ever painted mini! 

Time has not been kind to him. The sword went many years ago and the varnish has gone yellow but despite that he has a special place in my affections. He's an Orc Chief with Sword and Flail from the Citadel Fantasy Tribes range. As best as I can remember I must have been about 14 when I painted him sometime around 1980.

I can actually remember painting him but had forgotten my experiments with fluorescent colour and NMM. Quite ambitious for a fourteen year old beginner and it's only taken me another 33 years to start getting a grip on the NMM!

Thursday 1 August 2013

Dark Eldar Diorama - Finished!

One of the early lessons I learned at art college was that it can be surprisingly difficult to get a new project started. A blank sheet (real or metaphorical) is a daunting thing. It takes discipline, and a deep breath, to make those first marks and get things started. Much the same applies to ending a creative project.

Having worked on my diorama for so long it's been been a bit of a wrench to put down the paint brushes. I've been fine tuning the details and there always seems to be one more thing to do before it's all done. The obvious danger is that rather than improving things I'll overdo or even ruin them so, with a cry of 'enough', I am declaring this project finished.

A big part of the problem is that at the moment I'm just too close to the project. All I can see are the faults and I can see lots of them! This isn't because I'm unhappy with the piece but rather it's on account of it not being perfect. I'm well aware that absolute perfection is quite impossible to achieve but that doesn't stop me trying because trying for and falling short of perfection how I improve as a painter.

This is something I go through with almost every mini I paint and It's not a problem. I just need to put my Dark Eldar diorama in the mini cabinet and ignore it 
for a while. Then I can move on to the next project (Chi Chi) and start trying for perfection (whatever that may be) all over again. In a while I'll be able to look at my diorama with a fresh perspective and judge more truly if any details need adjustment.

Perfect or not I'm very happy with my Dark Eldar diorama and I suspect that I'll leave well alone as it's time to move on and apply the lessons learned to something new.