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Firestorm Painting Group

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Since a few members expressed interest in a painting support group I thought it would be good to start this thread .This will allow us to bounce ideas of each other, ask for advice on painting ( scratch building too!),  encourage and help each other improve. Hopefully this will help get people more enthused about the painting aspect of this hobby, and consolidate some of the great info on painting.  So lets have some fun and start painting!

I start it off by asking a question. How do you paint highlights with a brush?

 

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I'll post some pictures soon, but I'm mostly figuring out how to use enamel paints. I didn't really intend to use them, its what I had on hand from modelling vehicles. I was blown away by how enamel metals look. By the time I had finished my carrier n' escorts I was kind of locked into them to keep fleet cohesiveness together. My number 1 issue with painting is figuring out how to properly thin paints and I don't think I've ever gotten it perfect, but Rense himeslf couldn't keep this stuff together if I add any thinner at all. 

I will say for bold colour schemes enamels are reaaaally nice. I'd never use these for infantry models or skin. Also my engines are just not that great looking compared to blending I see other people doing with acrylics. If anybody has any recommendations for acrylic paints or a handy technique for perfect thinning every time, I'd love to hear it.

 

EDIT: Here's a teaser of my dread and what my skills / scheme look like right now. Lots of room for improvement, lots of desire for criticism. I'm moving at the minute but i will post the whole fleet when I've got a proper display for them and a proper camera.

image.jpg

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A paint support group. Just what i need for motivation. Thanks for creating one. :)

Currently on my shipyard is the last suqadron of veydreth cruisers. Sitting there since last december, waiting to get drybrushed and highlighted. :rolleyes:

Update with a picture of the current condition of the cruisers:

1.jpg

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@Wolfgang Jannesen For advice on thinning paints, google Wet palettes. Keeps the paints wet and thins them for you allowing for much more even painting. It may require more time as layers will need to be built up, even with stronger pigments. Even if you just add some water to the pot/traditional palettes it will thin them well enough without having to resort to thinners and mediums. This being said, I live in a soft water area. Hard water users may have to use such things. YMMV.

As for glow effects, drybrushing is the easiest  way, although you do loose some fine control over where the effect should reach. Airbrushing is king for this, if you have the room for the set-up (and the cash;)). though I imagine the time it takes to master can be considerable. 

As for what I'm working on, My Xelocian T3's, when the weather allows me to prime the damn things. Seeing as I'll be redundant soon, my free time just got a boost...

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2 hours ago, Bessemer said:

@Wolfgang Jannesen For advice on thinning paints, google Wet palettes. Keeps the paints wet and thins them for you allowing for much more even painting. It may require more time as layers will need to be built up, even with stronger pigments. Even if you just add some water to the pot/traditional palettes it will thin them well enough without having to resort to thinners and mediums. This being said, I live in a soft water area. Hard water users may have to use such things. YMMV.

As for glow effects, drybrushing is the easiest  way, although you do loose some fine control over where the effect should reach. Airbrushing is king for this, if you have the room for the set-up (and the cash;)). though I imagine the time it takes to master can be considerable. 

As for what I'm working on, My Xelocian T3's, when the weather allows me to prime the damn things. Seeing as I'll be redundant soon, my free time just got a boost...

Thank you! It sounds like my biggest issue right now is mixing on a flat mixing palette rather than in a well. I'll certainly look into wet palettes. Please post pictures of what you've got!

I'd also like to announce that ink washes do work just fine on enamel paints, you just need to give it 24 hours and some heat to set properly before you do it. 

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14 hours ago, Bessemer said:

Airbrushing is king for this, if you have the room for the set-up (and the cash;)). though I imagine the time it takes to master can be considerable. 

I guess I should learn how to use mine. 

That ship look good @Wolfgang Jannesen. I look forward to seeing yours finished @Brimat.

I am currently working on my new scrapyard fleet. I'll pot pictures of it in my UFO thread when I start painting them.

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Home made asteroids

What you will need:

2" pink foam or equivalent 

Black and white or gray spray paint

knife

 IMG_0901.jpg

Cut yourself a block of foam that is larger than what you think you'll need.

Cut off the corners until it is rounded out, like so.

IMG_0903.jpg

Gouge out some holes for craters and anything else to make it look more rugged.

IMG_0905.jpg

Next put it on a stick and spray paint it black.

IMG_0907.jpg

Continue hitting it with black paint until you have achieved the desired look.

IMG_0908.jpg

After it has melted to you satisfaction it wouldn't hurt to hit it with an airbrush if you have one. When done dust it with your white or gray spray paint.

IMG_0909.jpg

Let it dry , put it on a stand if you want, and you have yourself an asteroid!

If you need an asteroid bigger than 2" than you could possibly glue two layers together with maybe elmers glue. Be warned astroids smaller than 1" may melt away too much!

If I didn't do a good job explaining everything please let me know!

Have fun making your asteroids!

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Hey Admirals, we're in our new home now and I've been given the go-ahead to start a project I've had in mind since my days playing Aerotech, but I needed a garage to pull it off. I'm going to paint a nebula on a table in acrylic, then cover it in clear mastic until its thick and even enough that I can game on it, or use it for dining. 

What I need to know is what do you suppose the minimum size of table should be for Grand Fleet battles, maybe 4 players max at around 1600 points each? The games I've been able to play so far have been at 1000pts but I have plans of running a gaming club with a couple of tables in this place, so I'm building this thing big enough for tourneys. 3' x 6' maybe? It'll help the search for a table on kijiji. 

Second off, any suggestions for a clearcoat substance? I can have this thing levelled and apply enough clear mastic to mimic modelling water terrain, it'll be like plastic glass half a centimeter thick. If no other suggestion comes up, I'm thinking of doing that.

The last thing I'm going to hum and haw over for weeks, but I think it would look sharp to paint a thin green grid of 12" x 12" squares like a tactical overlay on the mastic. It would help with eyeballing measurements in play and I think just give the whole table a lot more 3d depth. Maybe write in a code for each sector in the corner of each square too, to really emphasize the tactical map nature. 

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11 minutes ago, Skyhawk said:

Will highlights work when the main color is black?

You're better off doing big panel highlights in a VERY slightly less black. So all but one corner is just a shade lighter than your base. It'll blend into the highlights in your coloured sections by keeping the lightsource consistent. I'm a little sold on glossing black models to let light reflect off of sculpted surfaces for depth, then let my colour do the rest of the work.

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10 minutes ago, Wolfgang Jannesen said:

What I need to know is what do you suppose the minimum size of table should be for Grand Fleet battles, maybe 4 players max at around 1600 points each? The games I've been able to play so far have been at 1000pts but I have plans of running a gaming club with a couple of tables in this place, so I'm building this thing big enough for tourneys. 3' x 6' maybe? It'll help the search for a table on kijiji. 

I have never had a battle that big, but I would think that you would need something more around a 4' x 6'. You will need to post a picture of your table  when its done though.

11 minutes ago, Wolfgang Jannesen said:

You're better off doing big panel highlights in a VERY slightly less black. So all but one corner is just a shade lighter than your base. It'll blend into the highlights on your base. I'm a little sold on glossing black models to let light reflect off of sculpted surfaces for depth, then let my colour do the rest of the work

Thank you very much! I will have to do some experimenting.

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This is just me talking from battletech and aerotech where panel highlighting is everything and cockpit / laser weapon jeweling were the focal points of every model. Black minis you drybrushed charcoal gray and tried to keep a consistent shadowed edge. I never managed to do grey highlights very well but I'm sure its not impossible. You'll get pictures of everything I create.

4' oughtta be enough for width at least

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@Wolfgang Jannesen For the Table 4' is a good width. Most games that gives plenty of room to move and is easy enough to reach the centre. For the other dimension larger games usually play on 6'. You could go larger if you have a big room. But I would not go smaller. 4 player 1600p each is a lot of miniatures.

There are pourable resins that could make your finished surface, I just don't know if it will be flat enough over that size, also they tend to not flex too well. I don't want your table cracking the first time you use it. I really think a full size Acrylic or tempered glass top would be best. Very expensive at that size though. 

@Skyhawk Highlight over black: if you want a rough old look, use drybrush roughly, picking only the highlights. If you want a smoother grey-black a softer all over drybrush suits. But for really smooth black shading try a 2 colour wet blend. 

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Aahhhhh

some people refer to it as 2 Brush Blending. Or even 3 brush blending, but let's not get crazy.

Sinmple explanation, You have 2 distinct colours. You mix them on the miniature itself. Colour A on one edge, Colour B on the other edge. Both are painted to about the centre. You then mix the wet paint in the centre, blending back toward the edges. But don't go too close to the edges, you want the edges to be distinct unblinded colour. 

Mot people use one brush for each colour, some people use a third brush for blending. I am usually lazy and just work fast washing one brush, but I don't recommend it, you can easily mess up with one brush. 

Smaller areas are much easier, as paint can dry quick. I wet blended the guns on my Dindrenzi, most engine glows, not sure what else, I plan on wet blending an upcoming fleet.

Lots of tutorials online, I use this technique on all my 28mm characters, beasts and warMechs.

Hope that helps

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