We moved house a few months back, which has given me the space to set up my painting table once again, something I’m really happy about. While I’ve never really done any wargaming, I’ve always found mini painting a really cathartic way to unwind, so it’s great to be able to get back to it in a more conducive environment.

My first efforts back at the painting table are sadly not so great! This is the first model I’ve painted since before Lockdown 1, and I was surprised by how bad my brush control was. Although it improved steadily as I went, at the start it was almost impossible to get paint where I wanted it!

I was reminded of two things very quickly: When you get paint somewhere you want it, it takes forever to dry. If you get paint somewhere you don’t want it, it dries instantly—long before you can get a clean wet brush to it for clean up on aisle 3!

By the end I produced something I was reasonably happy with. I’ve decided that now I’m getting back to painting more regularly, I want to make a big effort to tackle the things I’ve always wanted to be able to do, namely non-metallic metal, the good blends you need to make it work, and some limited freehand. Might as well start as you mean to continue, so I through the lot at this model!

To the photos!

I’ve had this mini out of the box since before Lockdown 1, so I’m afraid I can’t recall who made it, nor where I got it.

I’m falling between two stools on this paint job, with two blending methods I quite like – glazing and a layering style using a very dry brush and light touch. Ultimately, I’d like to have both in my toolkit, but I was half using one and half using the other and not doing either particularly well. I expect that to change with practice though! I hope!

I think the NMM looks slightly better in reality, but I definitely didn’t ‘push the contrast’ far enough to make it work either on camera or as it should be for a mini of this size. That’s something I’m going to try to address on the next mini.

As for the freehand on the shield, well, it’s less ‘lions rampant’ and more ‘rodents somewhat pissed off’ but great journeys begin with a small step, and the only way you get better at something is by doing it. Over and over. The fact that it’s fun makes it easier!

Anyway, I’ve already taken the lessons I learned on this one to the next mini, which I will post in a couple of weeks when it’s done (it takes me about a week to ten days of 30-45 min sessions to paint one as I’m more focussed on getting the mini as good as I can and learning as much as possible, rather than getting a lot of them done in the efficient time frame you’d need if painting an army!) Until then!

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