Catching up

Well, you know how blogs go. Typical. So, here’s the wrap-up to my last post, a montage image of the finished gnoll. Technically my “first” mini, of this new era of painting, anyway.

Cribbing notes from a forum post, so they might not make sense in this order!

I had begun painting him more or less like the old ones, but with better color selections. Then I looked at some AD&D gnoll pics, saw one drawn like a hyena and spent some time looking over hyena pics. Gave him more of a yellowish cast and some spots/dark muzzle. Just those little tweaks, poorly executed as they are, got me excited again. Especially when I consider the older gnolls I’m comparing him to were more like the fourth or fifth I painted back in the 90s, so hopefully this time I’ll jump a couple minis ahead in skill vs my old minis, at least until I catch up to those space wolves I posted (my last few paintjobs in the 90s).

Got in a session last night. I think one more session will finish this gnoll.

Took a while just touching up from the skin, and doing the leather bits. All I have left is the scale mail highlights, eyes and mouth, jewelry, base and digging up the weapon sprue from somewhere (so maybe two sessions if I go with a shield).

As I said, still trying to remind myself this is my first mini in over a decade. The skin turned out cool with the hyena effect, but a last minute wash lost some of the shadowing (I think it just needed a bit more thinning). The blending on the leather ended up pretty bad, but I decided I’m not going to bother fixing it. It’s fairly messy and for some reason I missed on glaring dark wash water mark on the leg from washing the boot (I might fix that with a line of flesh tone, but it might make it worse).

The leather shading wash was too dark or I needed to work up from darker shades after the wash. I’m working on mixing but I’m not real happy with the results, they just tend to be washed out odd colors yet. The leather has very dark recesses and when I was trying to work up the highlights (using a GW mixing chart and GW to Vallejo conversion chart), my nice red leather looks oddly yellow at the last couple shades.

Working on thinning paint, I’m starting to get a better consistency but I think I’m going to move to a flatter palette, I used to use a flat palette and right now I’ve got a rounded one. But with the thinner paint, I’m finding it difficult to hit the sweet spot between overloading and underloading the brush. I’m mostly avoiding having it overloaded to the point where the paint runs into the crevices (happened about four times last night while I worked on thinning, though) but still it usually pools a bit or I get so little I only get a stroke before having to reload. I’m spending more time trying to get the right load on the brush than actually painting 🙂

I’m also struggling with the brushes I got. I bought about ten brushes, a 2, couple 0, couple 2/0 a 3/0, couple 5/0 (my old ‘main’ size) and a couple 10/0 and a 15/0 (all but one are red sable). The smaller brushes have better points but don’t hold crap for paint and I have to keep going back for more. The bigger brushes are exhibiting pretty much every bad point issue I’ve seen (one with a split, one with a bend, I’ve trimmed the two with straggler hairs which are the better brushes I’m mostly using).

All this is making it tough to just practice being accurate, but when the stars align, I have a decent pointed brush with a proper load of paint at the proper consistency, I am actually seeing decent improvement in accuracy.

I chipped the stupid base paint when I took it off the paint pot it was glued to  Ohhhhh, I see. Not exactly a masterpiece, but it looks better in person. Also, a few things here and there really helped me get back into the swing of things a bit and in some ways it’s better than my older stuff. The scale mail in particular looks way sloppier in the photos, ohnoes!

Ok, so there. Now we’re caught back up to modern times!