Friday, May 31, 2013


I did work a little on the vestal today, mostly just tweaking her face a little. The changes are subtle, so I didn't get pictures.

I shaded and highlighted Azumi's purple sash, brightened up the highlights on her hair a touch, and put some shading and detail on her face. I want to put a pattern on her face paint too, but I need to do a bit of research first.

The shading on her face is pretty subtle. I want it to be subtle, but I may need to darken it up a touch to make it more noticeable.

She's about ready for freehand on her dress and sash(es), but I might do the headdress first.

Thursday, May 30, 2013


Semi-naked vestal pictures below.

I ended up working on hair today - highlighting Azumi's, and base coating the vestal's. I also started on Azumi's face. I'm not sure about the highlights on her hair, particularly the strands that come down across her chest. I will probably let it sit and see how things fill in around it.

And for the vestal, just base coated her hair, put on her eyebrows, and filled in a chunk of her right arm that I originally thought was an arm band or something, but I think it's really skin between straps holding on her armor, just like the left arm.I still need to shade it.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Back to your normally scheduled hot chick...

Semi-naked vestal at the bottom.

In the meantime, here's a picture of the squid man with a human mini for scale. The human is one I painted years and years ago.Shading? Sort of. Highlighting? I can't tell. Definitely some texture and frosting problems, too. See, practice does help you improve!

And here's the vestal. I finished her skin, and put most of the detail on her face. Next her her will be her hair. Sadly, the highlights are blown out in the pictures, so they don't show very well.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


Finished the little guy. Tomorrow I'll try to get a picture of him with a human to show scale.

I think this took me about 4 hours. It would have been a bit quicker, but I tried two different things with the brain before settling on this look. I tried brown shading (dull) and red shading (blended in with the fleshy bits too much), wasn't happy with either, then went with this green. I'm still not entirely sold on it. I kinda looks like he's got frosting on his head. Maybe I should have gone with purple.

 I'd have liked to be able to do the veins a bit thinner, but that just wasn't happening. I did it last, and was trying to kinda hurry so I could be done with the guy tonight. Maybe if I'd waited and done it tomorrow when I was fresher instead, I'd have done a better job.

Monday, May 27, 2013


So, usually I like having one or two minis I'm trying to do a real quality job on in progress as well as a couple that are smaller, meant for table top, or otherwise not so time consuming/focus requiring. I haven't had a little or lower quality guy for awhile, so today I started one.

Yes, that is a brain with tentacles and a ray gun. This little guy is one of the sidekicks from the Bombshell Babes range, which was just Kickstarted last fall. Bombshell Babes is the work of sculptor Patrick Kieth, and the web site can be found here:

I've got somewhere between 1 and 2 hours in on this guy, and I think he's about half done. I'm thinking I'll make the eyes red. The brain will be pretty much brain colored, though I'm thinking I'd like to put some green slime or something on there...except, with already having the red in there, not sure that'd be the best choice. We'll see. Maybe some other color slime. You can see I learned from the scorpions - you have to get to his base by maneuvering in around the tentacles, so I did it first. It'll need a bit of touch up, but nothing like the amount of touch up I'd have had to do on the tentacles if I'd tried to paint the base in under them.

Sunday, May 26, 2013


I got so excited about putting the purple bits on Azumi, I completely forgot I'd meant to do her hair first. So, I put the base coat on her hair after doing the base purple.

She's turning in to quite the challenge. There's so much fine detail, and so much of it is behind/next to/under other things, that you have to be real careful with your brush to get it without slopping on other stuff. I will be doing many rounds of clean up on her, I think.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Yay, base!

More semi-naked vestal pictures at the bottom.

So, my husband finished the wood base for the monk vignette I was working on a while back. Today I cut the plasticard pieces I'll be using for the ground and wall of the scene. Here's what it looks like with the pieces put together.

I'll use a little putty at the join of the two pieces of plasticard to smooth it over. I'll also need to fill in the edges of the 'wall' part to make a nice edge, or at least a better edge.

Here are the pieces separately. The plasticard will be painted with the airbrush. I think the wall and the ground will be different colors, but I haven't decided which ones yet. And, I think I want them to be slightly different, but not hugely different. They're not meant to draw a lot of attention.

And here's the base. There are still some strips of the double-sided tape I used to hold the plasticard to it while trimming it down to size. I've since taken it off. The base is walnut; I'm going to finish it with some oil-based poly, which should give it a nice glow and shine.

Put some darker shadows on Azumi's gown, and put a layer of highlights on it. That's probably it for the green parts of the gown until I come back to do the freehand. Next I'll do her hair, the edging on her gown, and her sleeves. Also, you'll notice she lost one of her swords. Snapped right off while I was working on her. (Sigh.) I think I'll be able to glue it back on, but I won't do so until I'm ready to paint the swords. Putting it on earlier will just be asking for it to break off again. But, it does show she's a show piece only - too fragile for gaming.

And, the vestal. Put some deeper shading and lining on her skin. I'm using RMS Rosy Skin triad, but adding some RMS Ashen Brown to the Rosy Shadow to make a darker (and cooler) shade color. I also used straight Ashen Brown to line the edges of her skin. Using Ashen Brown in skin colors is something I got from Jen Haley's DVD's, and thought I'd give it a try here. I need to smooth the shadows out and clean them up a bit, but I'm liking the look so far.

Thursday, May 23, 2013


Warning: Somewhat naked blood vestal below.

But in the meantime, here's Azumi with shading on her gown.The base coat is RMS Grass Green. The first layer of shadow is RMS Forest Green, and the second layer is Forest Green mixed with RMS Regal Purple, about 50/50. I need to clean up the blending some, but will probably do that after the highlights go on. Or maybe not, since I plan to put freehand on it, which will do a lot to hide slightly rough blends. I'm pleased with the look, though it doesn't come across quite as nice in the pictures.

And, the blood vestal. She's got one round of shading on her flesh. I will be doing another in a darker color as well. Her pose makes figuring out where to put the shadows a little interesting.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Very green

I didn't have a whole lot of time tonight, so all I did was base coat Azumi's gown:

It's green. Her ribbons there will be purple, as will some of the edging on the gown. I think it'll start to come together a little more once the other large areas are colored in.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013


I worked on stuff last night, but it was pretty much just prep. Not terribly good to photograph, and no pictures, no post. But I'll discuss the prep I did as I go.

First, after a long hiatus, back to Azumi. I'd previously started working on her skin, but went back when I found some more mold lines that needed to be cleaned up and saw that I was getting a pebbly texture on her skin. So, I did some clean up of the surface, re-primed a few spots where I trimmed off some flash, and then hit the skin areas with a coat of brush-on sealer to smooth the surface a bit. Last night I put on the base coat on the flesh, and the brush-on sealer on her dress and some of the other smooth areas.

Tonight, I shaded and highlighted the flesh. The surface is smoother than it was, but still a little rough in some spots. I'm going to go with it. I made the shadows a little darker this time around. There's not a lot to see with the highlights, but that's because not much of her skin is in the light. Between her pose and her outfit, most of what's there is in shadow.

Ordinarily I'd do her face details and hair next, but in this case I may wait on those. I may wait on the face because I haven't quite decided yet what color her clothing and such will be, and I want the mask to fit in with that, so I may do that once the rest has solidified. Her hair will be black, but since it falls over top of her bodice I may do the dress first.

And, I started the second in my Blood Vestal series. Just a base coat on the skin so far.The goal here is to try to put the feedback I got on the other vestal into play. For this one, I'll be focusing on putting more contrast into the flesh, and doing better with the hair.

With her, last night I found some flash and other casting issues that needed to be fixed. I cleaned that up as best I could (there are still some areas with flaws, but it's better than it was) and also gave her a coat of brush-on sealer to try to smooth out some pebbly primer texture that was apparent on the first one. It's not perfect, but it is smoother.

Her pose is a little weird in that from some angles she looks like she's standing up straight, but from others she looks like she's leaning.

Sunday, May 19, 2013


She's done! Finished the base and her eyepiece this morning. I'm pretty happy with how the sword came out, though it doesn't photograph well. I may stick a couple tufts of brownish grass on the base as well.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Almost done

Just got to finish the basing on the VOID girl. Well, and her eyepiece, which I realized I forgot when I was taking the pictures.

I used true metallics on the sword. I'll have to look again tomorrow to see if I'm happy with the shading and highlights there, but they looked pretty good under my lamp. One of the limitations with true metallics is the appearance is pretty dependent on the lighting, so what looks great under one light source and direction may look bad under different conditions.

For the base, I used some more of the Citadel texture paint. As you can see, I've stuck some additional 'rocks' in there for texture. Not sure how well the texture paint will do for holding them in place, so I'll see about that when everything dries. If the rocks pop off, I'll glue them back on.

You can also see that the paint from the base ended up on her boots. It's pretty annoying. I really need to do the base before putting the mini on it to avoid that, I think, which means for all the ones I have that are currently primed (most of which I put together last year) it will continue to be a problem.

Anyway, I should have her finished tomorrow, I hope.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Some shading before dinner

I made some progress on the VOID mini's clothing before I had to break for dinner and gaming. The shading looks a little abrupt on the boots, and I'm going to have to mess with the highlights on her pants some more. I  have two main tricks I use for deciding where to put highlights and shadows: put it under a lamp and see where they fall, and look at the mini top-down (thanks, Jess!) and whatever you can see should be highlighted, assuming your light source is meant to be overhead. On here, these two give me different placements. I made my best guess, but it looks a little off. I think I need to reduce the area of the highlight some; the way she's posed, her upper body shades most of her lower body.

I may try to smooth the shadow transitions on her boots some more, but most likely not - she's destined to be a table top quality piece, and for that it's fine. Hopefully tomorrow I'll be able to finish her.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

She's wearing a what, now?!

So, I put the highlights on her hair. There was a lot of futzing with glazing, re-highlighting, then glazing some more to try to get reasonably smooth transitions while keeping a nice bright highlight. I may mess with it a bit more in a couple spots, where it looks like my highlights got a little overly broad. I still need to practice this, but I'm not unhappy with the results for a first go. Even though I suppose it's technically a third go...

As you can see, I've also started on her clothing. Not sure why I like using red on sci-fi chicks, but there it is.  The red boots are arguably a little silly, but then...she has a thong. And a codpiece. I'm serious. (I'm painting her as if those things are not actually there.) And one of my pet peeves - armor plates just kinda stuck on to those boots through no clear mechanism. (Glue? Velcro? Sure, why not.)

So, having practiced what I wanted to on her skin and hair, I'm going to try to just get the rest finished quickly.

I also did a little prep work for Azumi today - re-primered the areas where I had to trim off some mold lines and gunk. I'll be starting over on her by re-base coating the flesh and working from there.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Skin, eyes, and hair

I fuzted with the highlights on her skin a little, bringing them up a bit, and adjusting the size and location of a couple of them slightly. I'm having trouble with the RMS Golden Blonde. I'm trying diluting it to various strengths, but it always wants to collect around the edges of where I put it and make a ring. Usually this happens if the paint doesn't like how much/little you've diluted it, and if you put it on in a puddle. I'm not sure why it's happening here.

Also filled in here eyes and base coated her hair with RMS Walnut Brown.

Tomorrow I'll finish the hair and start on her clothes.

Monday, May 13, 2013


A tale of success, and failure.

So, yesterday I showed some water effects as I'd mixed it, but before it dried. Just as a reminder, here's what it looked like.

Here's the same stuff, dried:

Note how much darker it is. (Nice color, though!) What's not as apparent is the amount of shrinkage, which is a fair bit. Keep that in mind...

Alright, now, I had some of that stuff on the base of the ghost. Here she is, with the base finished.

It did not exactly come out the way I wanted. I think my two biggest errors were these: I failed to account for how much the stuff would shrink, so texture that I meant to be really choppy seas ended up being a breezy day on the lake. So, the take away there is, when working with this paste, REALLY over exaggerate the texture. My other problem is that with the dark paint under it, the color doesn't really show at all. I should have put a lighter color under there. That would have shown off the water color better. As it is, it's just...dark. Anyway, I did a cursory job of painting some sea foam on the peaks and called it good. It's not fixable.

But hey, that's what happens when you try new stuff. It often doesn't work out the first time. Or the second. Or the third. But that's how you learn, and that's how you improve.

So, with the ghost done, I'm continuing on to finishing other partially done stuff. Today, the VOID mini - mostly because she'll be quicker to finish than Azumi. I expect to start work back up on Azumi within the next few days too.

Sticking with using non-flesh colors for her skin, I highlighted her flesh with RMS Golden Blonde. The tone looked a little funny, though, so I did a couple of glazes of Tanned Shadow, her flesh base color, to adjust the hue a bit and also smooth the blends. I may have taken that too far and made the highlights too dark. We'll see after it's had a while to sit. I also put in the white of her eye with Linen White.