Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Fallen Angel Part 3

I'm trying to wrap up some old projects, one of which is this angel figure from Milosh Miniatures.  My last post on this one was way back in June of last year, so it's been on hold for a while.  To refresh your memories, I decided to paint her up as a fallen angel with a more demonic color scheme (unnatural looking pale flesh, red eyes, and black hair and wings).  The reason I put this figure on hold was the wings.  They have the basic feather shapes, but not the fine details (the barbs).  I wanted to paint it so they appeared to be there, but wasn't quite sure how to pull it off.

I decided to take this on by first painting the basic highlighting/shading for the main feather shapes and then paint parallel black lines to give the impression of the fine details.  Worked well enough, but I've been going back over it all to adjust and try and improve the look.  So far I've done 3/4's the the wings and still need to finish the underside of the right wing.  But I plan to continue to tweak the rest of the wings as I go.

I actually think they look a bit better when viewed from the top.  From the side I feel they still need more work, so I'm doing my best to figure out how to fix that.

In addition to working on the wings, I've gone in with glazes to adjust the skin.  It's all pretty subtle, but from this close up of the face you can see some of the red/purple shades in the cheeks.  The glazes where applied other places too, this is just the easiest spot to show.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Time, Practice, and Some Help

I posted this on Facebook yesterday, but thought I should share it here too.  I started this blog back in 2014, but my painting journey began long before that.  I was thinking about what a difference time, practice, and a bit of help can make....

A few recent conversations had me reflecting on how far I've come with the figure painting hobby. So I started looking back at some old projects. I took a few representative pictures for comparison. These are all close ups of faces from busts (so similar scales and all display figures). I painted my first gaming figure around 20 years ago, but it wasn't until 2010 that I got interested in display/competition painting. So this is a look back at some of those early display pieces and a comparison with more recent work.

Practice and a desire to improve (including critically evaluating my own work and seeing what needed improvement) played a big role. But, perhaps just as important, was attending shows/competitions to see what others could do (so I had something to strive for) and all the amazingly helpful artists on the online forums and blogs. Thank you to all of them for the advice and the inspiration. And, whether you're a pro or an amateur, keep sharing your work. It's a wonderful resource for all the people in this hobby!

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Celt Part 2

I'm a bit slow in posting the update here, sorry!  I've made some decent progress on the Celt.  Since last time I've been working on the body, mostly the front of his torso and one of the arms.  Haven't had many long painting sessions due the family obligations and the holidays, so easier to work in small chunks I can actually finish in a short sitting.  The back and other arm still need work, but I'll get there.  As with the face, I'm placing spot highlights in places to try to give him a satin-like finish.  One of the keys to these that I've found are making sure you are consistent with how you're placing them.  In this case, I imagine the light is above but slightly to his left.  So the reflection point on each shape has to match that location for the light.  Easy to forget if you're not careful and I've had to make a few corrections as I go where things aren't quite matching up.

I thought I'd show a side by side progression on the face.  The first image is the work from last time.  The middle image has the hair added in and details like the lips (skin shadow + red, then skin highlight added in).  The final image looks similar, but has subtle variations added with glazes.  There's red in the cheeks, on the tip of the nose, and bottom of the ears.  I did a very subtle blue glaze on the chin and jaw to hint at stubble (but didn't want to overdo that).  It takes more layers for the glazes to show up against this darker skin (as opposed the light skin I normally paint), but that can be addressed.  In the end, I was happy keeping it subtle because that felt right for this subject (rather than exaggerated red on the nose/cheeks).  But more layers of glaze would have increased the color had I wanted to.