Bethalian WIP 2

I started tonight’s session by messing around with mixing some of the greens, reds, brown and khakis to see what happened. I got lucky with the first few mixes and dove into the robe.

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I started by mixing the base Olive Shadow with a little dab of Bloodstain Red. This gave me a real nice color and went in pretty good. Then I took the highlights up with the top two triad colors over Olive Shadow. Not real happy with placement or blending, it feels like a real step backward to my old way of painting back in the 90s. I probably should’ve taken things much slower and thinned out the layers a good double the translucence.

The interior of the robe I struggled a lot more with the mix. While I liked the color I got from my initial Khaki Shadow + Carnage Red, it was still too light to be a shadow. So I put in a bit of the Olive Shadow/Bloodstain Red mix into that mix and it made a decent shadow, with a dab of Olive Shadow into that for the darkest shadow. I started to bring up the highlights in the khaki triad, but I just wasn’t feeling the lighting (pretty obviously off), so I called it quits for the night.

Bethalian WIP 1

Ok, so kind of in between things and this dude’s been sitting on the desk for a while asking to be painted. So here goes my second Bones project. I call him the Bethalian because ‘Bathalian’ was mis-printed on the initial run of packaging.

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First I primed him with Army Painter black. I went a bit heavier than usual because even my base coats are thinned and, well, Bones don’t play that. Kind of wanted to try a black primed mini, I had done some orcs like that back in the day and also I’m starting to run low on white primer.

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I’m loosely basing him on a veined octopus, but after thinking about it I’m not sure I want to tackle that level of detail. Because they’re super detailed! We’ll see how it goes, I like the basic coloration anyway. So I based him in Bloodstain Red.

Because that’s a nice muted red, I wanted to go for a nice muted green cloak. This will also accentuate the gold trim that’ll go on it. So the back of the cloak was based with Swamp Green and the inner cloak was based in Khaki Shadow. I wanted another green to work off the khaki lining, so I went with Olive Shadow. Then I based the gold with the darkest shadow instead of the usual Oiled base; there’s so much recess in the trimwork that I just wanted to lay the darkest shadow in there right away.

As usual, my WIP pics aren’t real great for showing accurate colors even after tweaking the white balance in GIMP. They’re mostly to give a basic idea of what’s going on. Going to try to keep this one simple and relatively quick, about two hours just to do that very basic base-coating thanks to the black primer and a truculent Swamp Green.

Stereoscopic Photography

Shamelessly ripping off John Bonnot’s method for stereoscopic photography I couldn’t wait to try it out! This WordPress theme shrinks the images, so use your context menu to open them in a new tab or whatever works for your browser of choice.

First up, Tyden poses menacingly:

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Looks pretty cool. So, what next? A fearsome battle in the lightbox!

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Ooh, exploits the depth a bit more. So why not push that effect a little with two minis inline? How about Conan and Red Sonja aka Bertokk and Tyden? Why not, they love to pose menacingly!

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This is fun!

All I did was take a pic with the subject slightly off center (for example, to the right). Then a second pic with the subject off center in the opposite direction, by moving the camera (in this example, to the right so the subject is offset left). Be careful to keep the camera facing parallel to the subject, you don’t want to twist it or move it forward or back, just directly to the side.

Then in GIMP I just selected the area around one of the two images that would be the size of the final image and copied that; then pasted it as a new layer into the other image. Move the pasted layer so it matches the other image. A good trick is to use the grid markers on the side for vertical orientation. See where (for example) Tyden’s sword tip is on the grid and then make the pasted image’s sword tip match that on the vertical. I just use the cropped edge of the pasted layer to judge horizontal orientation.

That all sounds way more technical and fiddly than it is. It took me all of a literal minute to get it lined up for the first image. I don’t need the dots to see them (as John used), and traditional sterescopic imaging doesn’t use an orientation cheater, so I left that off.

One tip if you’re having trouble seeing the 3d image. Close your right eye and cover the left image with your left hand (so you can only see the right image with your left eye). Then close your left eye and cover the right image with your right hand (so you only see the left image with your right eye). This will remove the ‘duplicate’ images, leaving the stereo image when you crosseye it. Hope that tip helps, even if you see the stereo image without it, it makes it look nicer.

Thanks for the tips, John!

Orson WIP

Kind of a weird WIP, since I wanted to keep it secret. My recipe book is at home so I’ll post up pics and some commentary now and fill in paints used later.

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The usual prime/line that I do.

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Base coating. The idea was to learn glazing and for this I wanted to glaze shadows down from the highlights. So it looks a bit odd at first 🙂 My inspiration for the robe was this Brom painting. Kind of a blue robe shadowed down into purple with dark purple cuffs.

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Purple!? Yeah. Again, I took inspiration from Brom for the skin. The idea was the opposite of the robe, to build up the skin in layers from shadow to highlight. Started with purples and worked through pink up into white.

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The challenge (beyond painting with an entirely new technique!) was to make him look evil/sickly without crossing over into making him look necromancery. The package says evil wizard, not necromancer! Besides, he doesn’t have a bow.

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The stripes were a bit rough and the imp was ORANGE. I was going to work him up from there into yellow as a fire imp, with the imp under the robe as an ice imp, but I didn’t like how vibrant he was as I was going for an overall muted look with this project. So I put him back to white and liked that enough that I decided they’d be more ghostly summons.

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First pass of glazing for the robe and cuffs. I started with dark blues. Also my first NMM gold for the trim. And the scroll got my stock scroll treatment. Nothing fancy, but it works, even if it’s a bit, I dunno the word, bright? for this project. Nice to have the detail pop but it’s a little out of place, maybe should have desaturated it but I’m not that good 🙂

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Second round of glazing, purples. Imps painted up ghostly with OSL eyes. Leathers painted up in dusky skin triad, I wanted to keep them muted and cool. I did give a warm glaze over the larger pouch to break up the monotone.

Tyden, Barbarian

Ok, Ladies and Gents. Wrapping up my journey through all 5 L2PKs we have the barbarous Tyden, ready to slay all sorts of pitter-pattery little goblin types!

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Ok, promised some commentary.

I think female flesh is tough for two reasons. First, it’s less defined than the typical musclehead male fantasy model. Second, it requires a lot smoother blending across larger swaths.

Anne’s instructions must be pretty good because I still feel like I’m just fumbling my way along yet the results are more often decent than atrocious. I think this model steel turned out pretty decent. I think the sword is a bit weak, but it’s got an odd bevel on the two upper angles that was throwing me. I think my gold fu was pretty weak on this one. I was a bit rushed and distracted, but also it was almost all playing to the techniques that were weak on Anduriel. Good practice but far weaker than Ororo (where I played to my strengths).

For the hair I again used the red hair triad. Base of Auburn Shadow washed with a 2:1 Walnut:Russet. Then up through the triad. Lost my Blonde Shadow (found it under the desk when I was plugging in the lamp for pics) so I mixed Blonde Hair with the redhead highlight and I think I did blonde highlight for the points.

I used my WNS7 #1 a lot more on this one, just for something different. I tried putting in more time with the 3/0 but it’s just too limited (eyes only). I do prefer the 3/0 to the miniature 0, though. Bigger body, though at that size it’s not saying much.

And a quick thought on pulling off NMM. I really need to lay out all the spectrum I’m using, maybe 5-6 hues from the darkest to white. As I work my way up (following Anne’s instruction to lay in the white first to mark out my mental map of the effect), I can quickly work back and forth with the different colors to both fix mistakes and adjust the spectrum of the effect. As I said, I got a bit lazy with the gold on Tyden, but on Ororo you can see the effect of really taking the time to tweak the blending until it looks convincing.

I use a wet palette to lay out the hues, and once I find my errant hot glue gun, I’ve got an upgrade in mind for it…I ran out of room for Tyden’s gold spectrum, one of the reasons I rushed it.

Odd factoid from the project: Despite painting her during the Bond marathon on tv, the NMM gold was painted during Thunderball, not Goldfinger (the steel was painted during that).

Kit 3 was a really great lesson and I think it did a lot to improve my painting skills. I still have a long way to go, but I really wanted to start using NMM and this kit got me on the path to doing so. Highly recommend it.