Friday, September 28, 2007

Misspellings and Such

Wow, looking back, I have a number of glaring misspellings in the titles of my blog posts. Soory 'bout that.

Right now I'm trying to get as much of my Dark Angels done as i can before Colin arrives on the third. I'm working my way through the command squad. I hope to get started on a Land Speeder and maybe partially assemble a rhino. Maybe.

Maybe not.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Company Master Rimmon

Here he is (in all his glory). I named him Rimmon. Rimmon was also some demon or another. Fun fact: also the name of a science ship in Star Trek: the Next Generation. Dunno the exact titel, but its the one where Geordi has the cool probe interface and meets aliens pretending to be his lost mother.

As you can see, I've gotten better with my photographing. I owe it all to this forum thread:
Pretty good and easy to follow advice on how to make your models NOT look like a dried out cat turd on a bad stretch of road.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Movin' Along

Finally finished up my Dark Angles company master. He took about two days longer than I expected due to some pretty good things, actually. Angie got a job, so I spent much of my weekend (thurs-fri) celebrating. On a side note, coffee flavored tequila is a bit odd (not my purchase), but pretty good overall.

I am extremely pleased with the company master. I'm just waiting for some dull-coat to try before I re-shine the metal bits. Pictures should be up soon.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Glazes: the basic concept

No walk-through on my end. Yet. There's still a great one on Brushthralls though. Check it out.

Anyway, the basic principle of using glazes to highlight is that instead of doing big, bold swaths of color (or god-forbid dry-brushing), you do big swaths of not-so-bold color. To clarify: instead of using undiluted paint and either creating big chunky highlights, needing to feather everything to a high degree or mixing a billion shades for a gradient you can cheat and do more with less.

Adding glaze medium to a paint, does a number of things: it adds fluid to the paint without getting the weird color separations of pigment you can get from water AND it makes the paint transparent (based on how much glaze you added - more glaze = more transparent). As a bonus, if you use the Vallejo glaze medium (which I do and recommend), it acts as a drying retarder allowing you to use two brush blending very easily.

Basically, you build up layers of lighter and lighter colored glazes (I'm talking color, not transparency here) to create highlights. This is often called "layering". The transparent nature of a glaze, means that some of the color underneath the glaze will show through. This allows you to build a very subtle highlight very easily. You don't have to use two-brush blending, but if you don't, you run the risk of having clearly defined patches of color with a distinct border.

Luckily, the glaze medium acts a drying retarder and keeps the paint wet for a while (consequently, drying times go up, so be aware - you will have to wait at times for paint to dry before you can add another layer of highlight). and allows for easy blending. This will help get rid of distinct color borders.

There are some other things you can do with glazes, but I'll go into those later. As for now: get some Vallejo glaze medium and read the tutorial on the Brushthralls site:

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Glazes: prelude

or somesuch...

I'm making good progress on my company master. All of the shading is done and most of the highlighting is as well - at least on the main body, that is.

Every once in a while, I notice myself in a painting rut - using the same old techniques, and the same old colors. Other times, I'll be stuck on some perfectionist rampage and insist on highlighting every detail - sometimes ones I can't even see. I have been making an effort to shake things up when I notice this so I don't get bored and put the brushes down.

I was staring at my unfinished rhino a few days ago and started having this overwhelming dread at the prospect of two-brush blending every highlight on the model. It was downright sickening.

I really like two-brush blending, its a sweet technique. Unfortunately, it takes forever. So long, in fact, that often the paint I mixed begins to dry out. I usually try to add water or more drying retarder, but I end up changing the consistency of the paint and, often, spending way to much time mixing paint. By this point, the highlights are too boxy and I have to go back with a glaze of the base coat to touch up lines.

So, I put the Rhino down and hit the internet. Dunno exactly what I was looking for on Brushtralls, but I found something. This article on glazes saved my life. No joke. I was reading it and the note about using the same techniques as the cloth on armor. An idea formed. I painted up a scrap model and did a quick test with my Dark Angel colors.

It. Was. Awesome.

It looked just as good as my feeble two-brush blending (haven't quite mastered it yet) and took half the time. I quickly finished the Rhino with the new technique and moved on to my company master in record time.

I have found, that glazes are great, but once you add in a little two-brush blending on more complex colors it gets better. And there I was, a new technique and out of my rut.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Post moratorium = over

Yeah, so I haven't posted in about a month. Sorry. However, comparatively vast progress has been made. My 10 man tactical squad has been finished as well as there sweet, sweet ride.

SO, this is squad Valafar. Valafar was/is a demon who appears as a lion. Fairly appropriate, but mostly cool sounding. All space marine squads have to have a cool name - its the law.

It took forever to get the squad done, but not the Rhino. I gave up on two brush blending for my rank and file stuff and started plating with glazes for the purposes of highlighting. I gave this a whirl about halfway through the Rhino's highlights. I just couldn't keep two brush blending - especially when it didn't seem to be worth the effort. The results were very encouraging. I will be be switching to this technique for the rest of my rank and file Dark Angels AND I will explain how to do highlighting vie glazes in the near future.

For right now, I am trying to get the command troops done.