Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Paint: Sprue Cutters Union #9

Greetings wargamers and hobbyists, and welcome once more. Today, we are in my 'technicolour dream chamber'. This is where all my model paints come to hang out, chill, and take in the wondrous kaleidoscope of colours.

This week's Sprue Cutters Union topic is:

- What paint(s) do you use? -

As Jon said when he posted this topic, it's more of a practical discussion point than some recent topics covered, which were very interesting and gave us a peak into the minds of Union Members, but were also quite subjective and philosophical.

My answer to this topic will probably be quite different from that of most of my fellow union members, who in the main are scale model builders, but might share commonality with posts by the minature wargamers among them.

What paints do I use? Simple really: I use Citadel miniature paints, which I believe are a non-toxic acrylic. These are the paints produced by Games Workshop for use in painting the models that they produce, and I have always found tham to be a really great quality product. I also use their range of inks and washes, for shading and glazing on my wargaming miniatures. I have been collecting for many years, and as I am typically a sporadic painter, I tend to go through my paints quite slowly as well. This has resulted in my collection of paints incorporating multiple generations of colours and pot shapes, all by Games Workshop (pictured below, oldest to newest going left to right, plus ink, wash, and terrain/basing paint), the names and shapes some of which have passed into legend...

Now, there is an important consideration with miniature painting that comes before applying base coats, washes and highlights with a brush, and that is undercoating. I don't know whether undercoating is wholly necessary with scale model building, but if you want a clean and clear finish on your paint coats, and want the paint to stay on the model, then with gaming miniature painting you should always undercoat your models.

The undisputed king of undercoating must be the ubiquitous spray can, and for many years I have used Citadel's own Chaos Black and Skull White sprays, though with the cost of this excellent spray steadily increasing, I recently decided to try out Halfords Matt Black spray, which so far seems to work just fine, is cheaper per can, and the can is 25% bigger than either the Citadel or Army Painter (another brand which seems popular at the moment) cans.

As yet, I haven't decided to try out any other colours which might make a good base coat and save me a lot of time hand painting the predominant colour on any given set of models, but I think it must be on the cards after my success with the black.

So, thus far we have covered the colour pots of paint, the inks and washes, and the undercoat. So, given the size of the miniatures I typically paint, what on earth is that large pot of brown paint on the far right of my picture below? Well, when I recently got right back into painting properly, I realised that one aspect of finishing I had never addressed with a serious desire to get a good result was basing. I quickly realised that a well finished base really lifts a model, unit or terrain piece. I then went on to perfect (I use the term loosely) a method of basing that I am happy with and is quick to do:

Glue sand and rocks to the base. Citadel's Scorched Brown for base coat, Vomit Brown liberal heavy drybrush over the Scorched Brown, and then a light drybrush of Bleached Bone to highlight. Finish by sticking on a couple of clumps of static grass.

This method of basing resulted in two things. First, my finished models really did look finished, and second, I went through Scorched Brown paint like a Goblin Fanatic goes through magic mushrooms. Hence the £1 tester pot of Wilkinsons 'Java Bean' emulsion. It's almost an exact match for Citadel's Scorched Brown,  is about half the price for a pot, and as for the quantity in the pot itself...the currently available pot of Scorched Brown is the tiny one next to the tester pot...

So, that's my rundown of paint that I use for my wargaming miniatures. If you would like to read more posts on this topic by other Sprue Cutters Union Members,  check out this link, which will give access to other posts as they are added. It looks like my post is first this week!

And finally, if you fancy yourself as a Sprue Cutter, all you need is a blog, and a passion for miniature modelling. Take a look here for more info.

Thanks for reading!