Friday, November 5, 2010

Work In Progress: 15mm Sci-Fi Project Update

Every once in a while I hit inspirational pay dirt and a project deep within my Lead Mountain starts to take off. I get fun and satisfaction from trying new techniques and learning something. I get stuff done. That's where I am now with the 15mm Sci-Fi Project. I have struck oil. Sort of.

Nice & dirty, or still in need of a wash?
Early this year I bought some artist's oil paints, but hadn't the courage to try them until revisiting this post at Roundwood's World. This IPMS article, a LAF tutorial & this Scale Model Medic video are inspiring too.

This WIP shot shows two 8 wheel MICV's and a Bulldog HMTV from GZG. The one on the far left has been airbrushed & given a coat of Future (Klear). The other two have also been given a panel wash of raw sienna, burnt umber & lamp black oil paints mixed with turpentine. After drying for several hours, excess oil wash is removed with a clean, soft brush dampened in turpentine.

I may clean-up the two on the right a bit more, or leave them nice & dirty. The next step once the turpentine, the solvent, is thoroughly dry will be another coat of Future followed by dry brush highlighting and detailing.
This is a very forgiving process. Artist's oils take forever to dry completely. So take your time, make adjustments over several days; see how things look in a different light. Subtraction, taking away a little paint at a time, is the strength of this easy to control technique.
It may be worth noting that I have blurred my panel line wash into first stage weathering. That may work all right at this small scale, but I haven't seen it done on larger models where panel lines and weathering are two separate steps.
I'm lucky to have excellent ventilation at home so working with turpentine is less of a problem than it could be. Still, using this dangerous solvent is a serious undertaking. Consider alternatives, such as white spirit. Always Play Safe.

But detailing with oils has not been the only recent technical adventure! I have been intrigued by the 'Hairspray Technique' for some time now, so I gave it a try on several of my 15mm vehicles.  Here is one example using the Old Crow Models Provider Transport, wheeled version.
A foundation colour (metallic silver for this job) is laid down & protected with Future.
Hairspray is then applied & allowed to dry. I used a non-aerosol, unscented hairspray, pouring it directly into my airbrush. Clean-up of the airbrush was done with alcohol or Tamiya thinners.

Next, an acrylic top colour was applied & when dry, water was used to loosen this layer. The dissolving hairspray between the foundation and top colours permitted me to remove convincing patches & scrapes, revealing the foundation colour.

With the number of bits, pieces and vehicles that I wanted scratched-up for this project I had a golden opportunity to get a lot of practice with this fun technique.

Next up: I am thinking I'll try some camouflage on my Cougar MBT from Ground Zero Games.

Is this the camo scheme for the Cougar?
I played about with some stencils & other camo ideas on this practice board, and decided I like this freehand pattern best.

Until next time,
Peabody out!

Spartan 117 gives good fire sale!

A while back I had the pleasure & the good luck to pick up some of Spartan 117's painted UNSC troops from Ground Zero Games. Along with the lovely platoon of minis I also received two hover APC's!
I only just got around to basing this platoon and wanted to waste no more time gloating over my good fortune!
Thanks Spartan! Your nicely painted minis were well packed. You are a square dealer and I appreciate the effort you put into making this a great deal for me.

 Peabody out!