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Subject: Help a noob painter out rss

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Matt Dripps
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In anticipation of Massmora and Inferno I've decided to take up painting my minis. I figure the Arcadia series would be a good start as they are quite bigger than the mass of Zombicide minis I got. I started with the Troll since he is mostly red skin. I sprayed him with my Rustoleum flat black primer and let him sit for about 5 hours then began painting.

The paints I used are Apple Barrel acrylics as I've read people do use these for mini painting. The first go at adding color to the Troll wasn't that great. The cor didn't seem to hold and the black sho e thru the red. Is this an indicator that the primer wasn't ready? Do my paints suck? Any tips and pointers would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
 
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David Doughty
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I've only been painting for a short while...but it sounds like you just need to try to do a few coats of paint. Your red paint might also be a little thin, but you'd rather it be thin than too thick.

I don't have experience with Apple Barrel acrylics so I couldn't say if it's the issue, I use Army Painter paints exclusively and have never had a problem, but I also prime white on my figures.

 
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steven smolders
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The color red is a color that doesn't paint well and needs more layers to paint on.

Same as yellow also a hard color to paint with.

edit :

I looked up the paints and only 0.99 dollar for a bottle i don't think its the best paint to paint your mini's with. A decent paint costs around 2-3 dollar for 1 bottle.
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Dane P
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1. If you're serious, read on. If you're not, ignore this post.

2. Painting and cooking share one common aspect: the better your ingredients and tools, the easier it is to achieve great outcomes.

3. So ditch those paints from the craft store. You want, you NEED paints designed for miniatures. Reaper is a great brand, and best in class in the quality/cost. Citadel/Games workshop are fine, but if you start painting from quality dropper bottles like Reaper/Vallejo, you will never want to use GW. (And you probably have dropper bottles of that crappy paint, so you can see what I mean.)

The brushes from the craft store are great for beginners thought.

4. Use a No.2/#2 size for virtually all your stuff. Don't go smaller than a No.0/#0 because you'll disappoint yourself until you're practice makes it worthwhile.

5. Wash, dry, then spray prime your miniatures. Start off right! Get your oily finger residue off the miniature. Lay down a good coat of gray or white primer (I recommend gray) and your results will immediately improve. Buy Krylon brand at your local walmart or hardware store. Inexpensive, professional grade primer for metal or plastic.

6. Use a palette. Dropper bottles are for dropping a few drops into a pallette, using (distilled) water to thin it to the consistency of milk and then dip the brush, dry the excess off the brush, and paint. Slowly.

7. Coolminiornot.com That's the place you want to go for painting miniatures.
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Daniel Krauklis
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What Dane P wrote.

You probably get the best beginner results by: Priming, base coating, washing, dry brushing.

Prime with a model spray. They cover nicely and give a little texture for the other paint layers. Colour is mostly a matter of taste if you're not aiming for a painting award, I prefer black myself.

Base coat with a model paint with high pigmentation, such as Citadel's Base line, the Vallejo paints, Army Painter. Just cover each area with a slightly darker hue than you want to end up with. If you paint neatly, the model will look better, but don't worry about splotches. Model painting is all about fixing small mistakes.

Buy a wash (a very thin, highly pigmented ready blended mix intended to sink into the model's recesses, enhancing its three dimensional aspects), or mix one yourself out of a high pigmentation colour. If you only use one, a dark brown wash is usually best overall. Brown goes well with warm base colours, black with cold (such as metal paints). Save other wash colours and glazes for later experimentation. You don't need to be particularly careful with washes, just cover the model without overdoing it. Let it dry completely.

When dried, do a dry brush layer with the colour you intend the model to have in the end. Drybrushing can be done with any kind of colour, but preferrably slightly thicker paints. If you base coated with different colours, dry brush with the same, but lighter colours. Dip the brush into the pot, wipe it off on a piece of white paper until you almost don't see any colour from your strokes, then brush the area on the model pretty thoroughly, without completely covering the work you've already done. Correct mistakes. Then do a second, optional light drybrush with yet another grade lighter hue of the same colour. The trick here is to only lightly highlight the raised areas.

That's basically it. Layering, detail work and more advanced techniques can be learned from experimentation and loads of videos out there. Have fun!
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Matt Dripps
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Daniel, Dane...thank you for the insight!

The primer I got is Rust-Oleum 249846 Painter's Touch Multi Purpose Spray Paint, 12-Ounce, Flat Black Primer. It says for plastics that for it to be fully dry and for best results allow 5-7 days. So is this not a good primer? What is something you swear by?

I have done research on techniques for washes and drybrushing and a video series showed a guy using a premade wash (though other vids showed people making their own) so I'm thinking I'll invest in the better paints. I've been looking at Reaper miniatures Learn to Paint: Core Skills set. I might go with this just to start out and get a feel for what I should be doing.

As for my poor Troll I pretty much murdered...how do I get all that mess off him so I can start over?
 
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Rick S
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ZOMBICIDE is probably the absolute best game to learn how to paint models. Painting the zombies first allows you to get enough practice in before painting the survivors.

I prefer to use white primer because it is much easier to cover and will give me vibrant colors for my chibi's with less work.

I have used Apple barrel paint and it is not very good for painting models.
It will take two to three coats to cover with most of their paint (pewter grey three coat coverage, Really?). The worst part of Apple barrel is that after drying it will rub off of the model with the lightest touch.
If you want to use craft paint and don't want to buy model paint, I recommend switching over to Americana by DecoArt. This paint will perform MUCH better for you. (Michael's/Hobby Lobby)

Also I recommend painting the larger number of models first and working your way up to the unique sculpts. orcs first, then the goblins, then vampires, and Beastmen. This way you can paint a color on a model while another model is drying.

A masters handy pallet, wet pallet will also help a lot.(Michael's)

Good luck, have fun!
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Rick S
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matthewdripps wrote:
Daniel, Dane...thank you for the insight!

The primer I got is Rust-Oleum 249846 Painter's Touch Multi Purpose Spray Paint, 12-Ounce, Flat Black Primer. It says for plastics that for it to be fully dry and for best results allow 5-7 days. So is this not a good primer? What is something you swear by?

I have done research on techniques for washes and drybrushing and a video series showed a guy using a premade wash (though other vids showed people making their own) so I'm thinking I'll invest in the better paints. I've been looking at Reaper miniatures Learn to Paint: Core Skills set. I might go with this just to start out and get a feel for what I should be doing.

As for my poor Troll I pretty much murdered...how do I get all that mess off him so I can start over?


I use rustoleum 2x primer.

Citadel washes are amazing, I have 75 different bottles of wash. If I could only have 4 they would be citadel Nuln oil, aggrax earthshade, seraphim sepia, and Athonian camoshade.

If you're going to invest in better paints, visit your local game stores and see what brands they offer. This way you can run out and get a replacement bottle right now instead of waiting for it to deliver. Plus you can add colors to your set, little by little.

You can soak the troll in simple green and scrubbing with a tooth brush to remove paint, usually it doesn't remove all of the primer though.
Let it sit for 24 hours after the soak to let the primer that didn't come off set up. Then LIGHTLY respray primer, I would use white.
You don't want your prime coat to cover the model, you just want a thin coat to give the paint some "tooth" to stick to.
 
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Mike Smith
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Reds, yellows, and oranges are much harder to do over black primer. Black primer will tend to bleed through these colors until you put many layers on. Most pros tend to use black primer though, it darkens tone and makes more realistic coloring. White primer makes more vibrant colors (which is what I would recommend for Arcadia Quest).

I've only painted 3 games, but they were massive (ks versions of AQ, Z:BP, O7S). I used black Army Painter primer on Black Plague, but switched to Army Painter White primer for AQ & O7S. I also use Army Painter paints and ink washes.

Using a ink wash is the easiest step, and makes a huge difference! It makes the appearance of shadowing and a pseudo highlighting effect. I haven't been painting long and I'm still blown away by the before and after of 2 minutes of work will cause from a ink wash. If white primer makes things to vibrant, you can also always darken the tone down with an extra layer or heavier wash.
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Matt Dripps
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How long do you all let primer dry? Do you really let it sit for a week or is there a safe time that's sooner to lay down a base? All videos I've been seeing sat nothing about primer dry time.
 
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Mike Smith
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I just did 24 hours, the instructions on army painter don't give a defined time, just says "until dry". You just want a real light layer of primer, just enough to barely cover the model. Shouldn't take long to dry.
 
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Thomas Dunagan
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I agree with most of the posters above with the exception that you CAN use the cheap paints at the crafts store/wal-mart. That's all I use along with Citadels washes. I would recommend using white or gray primer if you are painting with lighter colors as coverage is easier and takes less coats of paint. I only use black primer if the model is overall very dark.

 
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Rick S
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matthewdripps wrote:
How long do you all let primer dry? Do you really let it sit for a week or is there a safe time that's sooner to lay down a base? All videos I've been seeing sat nothing about primer dry time.


Usually 12-24 hours, but I have brought them inside and started painting immediately on several occasions.
 
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Matt Dripps
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I must've really coated this guy then. I'll hold the model and the primer spots I'm holding him at leave a little on my fingers.
 
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Apple Barrel paints will work, but you get what you pay for. They are much thinner than other hobby paints like Reaper paints. Much less pigment in them so it will take multiple coats to get them to come out right. Also (as I'm sure someone mentioned already) black primer does make things more difficult. It helps to get darker tones and more muted colors, but for the most part, white primer is a much better way to go. If you need to darken things down after, use an extremely watered down darker color and go over the areas and it will gather in the creases and seams and leave a shadowed look
 
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Trueflight Silverwing
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Heliodorus04 wrote:

3. So ditch those paints from the craft store. You want, you NEED paints designed for miniatures. Reaper is a great brand, and best in class in the quality/cost. Citadel/Games workshop are fine, but if you start painting from quality dropper bottles like Reaper/Vallejo, you will never want to use GW. (And you probably have dropper bottles of that crappy paint, so you can see what I mean.)


//have to disagree with this one. While I will agree that you get the type of paint that you pay for, the only difference between cheap brands and stuff like GW paints is the amount of pigment in them. I've been painting minis since the late 80's and I've come to find that the cheap stuff can end up looking just as good if you take a little time and effort.

When I first started out, I fell for the whole thing of buying the big name brands and everything. After a few years, I switched over an d there was no noticeable change to the quality of the finished models, but a sizable difference in the content of my wallet.

With the cheaper brands, you do an extra coat or two on certain parts and things end up looking just as good in the end. I actually won a award for one of my Warhammer 40k painted armies at a regional tournament years ago and the entire thing was painted with the same Apple Barrel stuff the OP has.
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The main problem with craft paints is that you want to thin your paints with water so they go on smoothly, but many craft paints aren't great at holding their colors after thinning.

That being said even miniature paints are often going to show black thru when you paint red on it without multiple coats of paint. That's the importance of thin coats of paint, you want to put multiple smooth coats on so you don't see brush strokes and paint doesn't build up so heavily that it starts to obscure details. If you want something red with a black primer on it, you may want to put a thin coat of white, orange or medium brown down first to lighten it, and then paint red over that.
 
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I think your intuition that AQ minis are a better place to start is backwards. AQ has a cartoony style that lends itself to very clean painting. Broad, flat surfaces may seem easier to work on, but they quickly bring out inconsistencies like color coverage and edgework. AQ minis should be bright, vibrant and clean. That's hard.

Zombicide minis have more texture, which will make varied coloration look more natural. Zombie apocalypse also implies dirty and messy, so you can get away with less clean painting skills.
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Rick S
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Dormammu wrote:
I think your intuition that AQ minis are a better place to start is backwards. AQ has a cartoony style that lends itself to very clean painting. Broad, flat surfaces may seem easier to work on, but they quickly bring out inconsistencies like color coverage and edgework. AQ minis should be bright, vibrant and clean. That's hard.

Zombicide minis have more texture, which will make varied coloration look more natural. Zombie apocalypse also implies dirty and messy, so you can get away with less clean painting skills.


As usual, I agree with the dread Dormammu!
 
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Here is the big troll i painted.
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Matt Dripps
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Dormammu wrote:
I think your intuition that AQ minis are a better place to start is backwards. AQ has a cartoony style that lends itself to very clean painting. Broad, flat surfaces may seem easier to work on, but they quickly bring out inconsistencies like color coverage and edgework. AQ minis should be bright, vibrant and clean. That's hard.

Zombicide minis have more texture, which will make varied coloration look more natural. Zombie apocalypse also implies dirty and messy, so you can get away with less clean painting skills.


Hmmm. I see your point but damn that's a lot of zombies. Lol! My hesitation with Zombicide is how small the details are. I may just proceed with what I have and finish up the troll and see how it goes. I'm not looking for awards or anything with these, just thought it might be an enjoyable pastime during the cold season.
 
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matthewdripps wrote:
Dormammu wrote:
I think your intuition that AQ minis are a better place to start is backwards. AQ has a cartoony style that lends itself to very clean painting. Broad, flat surfaces may seem easier to work on, but they quickly bring out inconsistencies like color coverage and edgework. AQ minis should be bright, vibrant and clean. That's hard.

Zombicide minis have more texture, which will make varied coloration look more natural. Zombie apocalypse also implies dirty and messy, so you can get away with less clean painting skills.


Hmmm. I see your point but damn that's a lot of zombies. Lol! My hesitation with Zombicide is how small the details are. I may just proceed with what I have and finish up the troll and see how it goes. I'm not looking for awards or anything with these, just thought it might be an enjoyable pastime during the cold season.


Which is why I didn't try to talk you into switching when I mentioned this earlier.

ZOMBICIDE is a better place to learn how to paint, but if you don't feel like painting it then it is not the place for you to start.

Chances are, your painted AQ game will look as good or better than the factory painted "war paint" sets.

Here's my Troll.
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Matt Dripps
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Excellent! I like that base, too! I'll cross that bridge when I get there. If anything I'll murder up this guy, learn some stuff, then give him a bath at some point and do him up proper. Frustrations aside, it was a fun experience!
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Paint red over a light-med brown basecoat. It just doesn't cover well over black or even white primers. Yellow paints well over light browns as well. Have fun painting!
 
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