Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Metallic primer

This figure was a gift from my brother. By which I obviously mean he got me a Sanguinary Guard box set. A surprisingly good choice considering he knows very little about Warhammer and a Games Workshop store tends to be overflowing with boxes of stuff that mean nothing to most people (hell, most of them don't mean very much to me either).

I did very little to this model (it's so detailed and themed there's not much to do), except trim the guard on his sword a little, and cut a dangling gem off his right shoulder that would have been at the wrong angle, and of course a little repositioning was needed. I didn't give him a jump pack because I didn't think he needed it. I considered a cloak, which would probably look cool, but I wasn't sure I could pull it off and decided against it.

I was trying to use a metallic primer called 'Plate Mail Metal' by Army Painter. It turns out that paint doesn't adhere to the primer coat very well at all, which completely defeats the purpose. It might be that I'm applying it too thickly, but I don't think that's the case since the primer is supposed to work as the base coat. I also have a blue primer from Army Painter, I haven't really done much with it but I think that works better, we will see. I considered painting him all in bronze with just silver weapons to look like a statue, but after finishing the bronze coat he looked a little flat so I went ahead and painted him as a proper Space Marine, colouring some bits gold to stand out, painting the gems and purity seals, as well as painting joints and pipes in boltgun to look functional.

Because the paint didn't like the primer very much, I had to apply the bronze in three or four very very thin coats to stop it from running. Now, I realise that this is the best way to do it anyway (short of an airbrush), but I'm never patient enough. However, because I had no choice this time, I ended up with a very nice smooth coat of bronze that I was very happy with. I used a light drybrush of gold to try to highlight the bronze, but I think it was too light as it doesn't seem to have made any noticeable difference. I didn't want to edge-highlight him though, so I relied completely on the dip for shading.

I used quickshade again, but this time I attached the model to a drill and used that to shake off the quickshade. This worked better, but there was still pooling on the base and, annoyingly, on the tip of the sword. I ended up sanding the varnish off half the blade and repainting it, then varnishing with good old 'ardcoat. The base I also repainted (over the varnish this time) and varnished with the Galeria matt (along with the purity seals). The rest I left shiny because it's all metal and gems, which look OK glossy.

The model seems to have been darkened a little by the shading (the gems especially look too dark now), which I wasn't really expecting, perhaps I need to switch to a lighter tone of quickshade. A faster drill might solve the pooling problem, but since that's not an option right now I'll just have to manually remove any pools next time (actually, I'm wondering if it can be watered down to make it easier to flick off, I'll have to try some experiments). It's certainly faster than using normal washes, and shades better with less effect on the main colour (take for example the feathers on the aquila - they look much better than anything else I can do short of manually highlighting each feather), and I think I like the uniform shadow colour more than different coloured washes.

Overall I'm happy with how he came out, and it felt as though he took less time and effort than many models have, which is probably thanks to the quickshade and the fact that he didn't need to be pinned or painted as separate pieces and put together afterwards. The gems were harder to paint than I expected, the teardrop-shape turned having more of an effect than you might expect (I was used to the perfectly round gems thus far), and they turned out too dark. He's a little darker overall than I expected, but that works because it makes the sword stand out more and serve as a focal point for the model.

I have decided to call him Amadeus, because he looks somehow Aztec to me (the golden colour scheme and sun-like mask perhaps) and Amadeus sounds vaguely Aztec, at least in my mind. Speaking of which, every time I think of the Sergeant I just finished, the name "Fistandantilus" pops into my head. I know it's silly and unimaginative, but I didn't choose it, the name pretty much chose itself, so there you have it. Perhaps I shall call him "Ant" for short.

I'm not sure what to paint next, I have a couple of Grey Knight terminators already primed with the metallic primer that will hopefully be quick to finish, but I've lost interest in Grey Knights now that I don't like the new codex and fluff and also everyone's painting them right now in exactly the same way (yes, I could paint them differently, but I just really like the official scheme). There's also a few conversions I'm in the middle of, but to be honest I don't feel like finishing them right now, I'd rather finish some painting projects. Maybe I'll get back to those sniper-rifle scouts?

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