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Absolute Beginner Story


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#1 Gothik

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 11:00 AM

I always wanted to play a wargame, but I was always afraid of huge costs, complex rules with rolling bags-of-dices and painting models. Three or four years age my cousin talked me into WFB and we bought a stater kit, Dwarves vs Goblins. Gray plastic looks terrible on the battlefield, so I decided to read some books, buy some paints and try to paint my dwarves. After priming and base-coating few models they looked like s#*t.  "Didn`t I say so?" - I threw all this stuff into ma basement and forgot about wargaming.

Until last year, when I found DT and got immediately blown away with it. Fast and bloody, great models, simple rules but tactically challenging, quick setup, great game world - I love it, just like all of You :) My DT gaming partners are all avid painters, so I got jealous and decided to give it a try once more - went to the basement for my old paints and brushes and started again as an Absolute Beginner. 

In this topic, I will post pictures of my work progress and humbly ask You for comments and critique. Please note that I have no experience in this and "painters`-slang" may be difficult to understand for me :) So, in advance - thanks for Your attention!

Where to begin? Because I want maximum tactics in Dust Tactics, I decided that I need two sets of each unit for each in the game (I know, I`m really psycho), of course except of the heroes, command squads etc. An old core set tiles have "winter" and "industrial/interior" styles, so I decided to paint my infrantry in winter and regular camo. I started with Allies:

1. BBQ Boys, winter camo

 

Errors made:

1. I used my old Chaos Black primer, which I had been using when painting my infamous dwarves. Now I know: if You are about paint white or light-colored model, use WHITE primer! Black will be difficult to cover and will be slightly visible in some places - like on the bases, for example.

2. To paint faster (as a father and company owner I don`t have a lot of free time) I decided to use Army Painter`s Quick Shade. I followed the manual on the can - dipped my models, shaked them vigorously and waited till they get dry. Now look on the "mud-covered" coats and don`t believe that shaking will remove the excess of the shading liquid - You have to remove it with a BRUSH!

3. Using regular PVC glue for glueing sand to the bases is a really bad idea - the sand will diappear quickly, the glue causes strange black stains etc. Use white wood glue instead.

But, as for a first batch of models, it could been worse, IMHO.

 



#2 Gothik

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 11:06 AM

2. The Gunners, winter camo:

Error made:

Exactly the same as in case of BBQ Boys - I was painting both teams simultanously. So, white primer instead of black, white wood glue instead of pvc glue and quick shade has to be removed with a brush. Please note first shy experiments with drybrushing - boltgun metal shade on bazooka`s camo green :)

 



#3 Gothik

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 11:11 AM

3. Recon Boys, winter camo

 

Errors made:

Lessons learned - this guys were primed white and I removed the excess of quick shade after dipping with a brush. White wood glue applied as well. I am pretty pleased with them - as an Absoulte Beginner, of course. :)



#4 Gothik

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 11:19 AM

4. Spec Ops Rangers, winter camo

Errors made:

It is not clearly visible on these pictures, but matte coating on these models have cracked and looks like "sunburnt-earth". I`m using Army Painter Anti-Shine varnish and it was the only case with that strange effect. The humidity and temeparture were average, models were completely dry after dipping (48+ hours before), so I suspect "overdosing" the varnish. I wasn`t pleased with the shiny look of the Recon Boys in some places and I gave each model 5-6 short bursts instead of regular 2-3. So, easy on the varnishing sprays guys!

More experiments with drybrushing - sniper rifle and radios are covered with a small drybrush of boltgun metal :D

 



#5 blkdymnd

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 11:25 AM

 Fantastic stuff!  White is a very hard color to pull off for a beginner (and veterans like me), and you pulled it off very well

 



#6 Gothik

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 11:26 AM

5. Spec Ops Rangers, regular camo:

Errors made:

This time I decided to accelerate even more and skipped priming. And guess what? - factory priming passed the test IMHO, so it is not an error. But it is a too shy drybrush attempt on coats and sleeves - Catachan Green with a small amount of Rotten Flesh didn`t work out.  Maybe the reason is that I was drybrushing these models after the quick shade dip - I`ll try to change the order of these activities with the next squad.

 

 



#7 Gothik

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 11:31 AM

And here You can compare how my two camo styles look on the game board:

Sorry for the dark photo, I`ll use flash next time. BTW I tried the hairdryer + cold water combo for the first time on the antennas of green coat duo and was astonished with the effects. It really works!

 



#8 mgentile7

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 03:50 PM

They look great man. The army painter stuff is good but brush it on for more control. It really doesn't take much more time. If you want to see some quick winter highlighting techniques see below. Its just a light gray and white highlight over the primer on the german uniforms. They only take a few hours to bang out a squad. The camo takes a lot longer so I save them for when I can get some extra time like on a weekend or just do one an evening if possible. I base with wood glue and different train gravels and then when that's dry i cover it with a coat of scenic cement(just very watered down clear glue) all products by woodland scenics purchased from my local train store. Good luck with the rest of your army it looks great so far.



#9 mgentile7

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 03:57 PM

As I dont normally use army painter shading I cannot accurately comment on what happened (maybe not fully dry??) but for clear coating i use 2-coats of krylon painters touch gloss followed by 2-3 coats testors or model masters flat. I usually let my models dry over night. Works great and i have some very old minis that look like they never saw the light of day. If you live in a milder area they both dry quick to the touch and you can apply all coats quickly then leave in the sun to bake. (I used to live in Texas so they did bake even with the humidity!!!)



#10 JigBakerSugar

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 04:13 PM

mgentile7 said:

 but for clear coating i use 2-coats of krylon painters touch gloss followed by 2-3 coats testors or model masters flat.

The gloss would be pointless in this case, as Army Painter dip is a  polyurethane varnish with a stain added. (The flat is another story. I prefer the Army Painter Anti-Shine spray, but Testor's works well too.)



#11 Hammerhand

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Posted 12 February 2012 - 07:09 AM

 looking good! so when you say you got 2 of each unit, are you doing one in snow cammo and the other in regular cammo? Don't know if I got that confused.  Hats off, they look like a really good standard for anyone, let alone a complete beginner!



#12 Gothik

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Posted 12 February 2012 - 11:15 AM

Thank You guys for Your comments - they really motivate me to work even harder and improve my humble skills :)

@ Hammerhand: Yes, I intend to have two sets of each unit, one in winter camo and one in regular camo. I still haven`t decided how to paint Command Squads, as I have only one set of them :)

 



#13 Psykostevo

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 01:30 PM

 Always use black primer. Even if th model will eventually be white. It gives you chances to layer the proper depth. 



#14 Bravester

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 03:06 PM

Psykostevo said:

 Always use black primer. Even if th model will eventually be white. It gives you chances to layer the proper depth. 

Actually, I would recommend NEVER using black primer when wanting to paint a model white-you have to spend ages layering white back over the black, time that could otherwise be spent getting more done on the model.



#15 Dakkon426

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 03:09 PM

Bravester said:

Psykostevo said:

 

 Always use black primer. Even if th model will eventually be white. It gives you chances to layer the proper depth. 

 

 

Actually, I would recommend NEVER using black primer when wanting to paint a model white-you have to spend ages layering white back over the black, time that could otherwise be spent getting more done on the model.



+1 to that, it took me over 7 layers of white just to cover up the grey primer with white on my recon grenadiers.



#16 mgentile7

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 03:29 PM

JigBakerSugar said:

mgentile7 said:

 

 but for clear coating i use 2-coats of krylon painters touch gloss followed by 2-3 coats testors or model masters flat.

 

 

The gloss would be pointless in this case, as Army Painter dip is a  polyurethane varnish with a stain added. (The flat is another story. I prefer the Army Painter Anti-Shine spray, but Testor's works well too.)

As I said in my statement I don't use army painter dip but I also don't discredit its use. If it is an alternative to the gloss coat that I mention then great you have saved a step and a few bucks. I know though from experience I have models many years old that show no signs of wear based on the products mentioned.  We all have our favorites so use what you think is best and can get your hands on and good luck. And yes I'm now considered old too.



#17 Gothik

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 09:32 PM

Dakkon426 said:

Bravester said:

 

Psykostevo said:

 

 Always use black primer. Even if th model will eventually be white. It gives you chances to layer the proper depth. 

 

 

Actually, I would recommend NEVER using black primer when wanting to paint a model white-you have to spend ages layering white back over the black, time that could otherwise be spent getting more done on the model.

 



+1 to that, it took me over 7 layers of white just to cover up the grey primer with white on my recon grenadiers.

 

 

Exactly. Please compare the pics of the back of the BBQ Boys (primed black) and Recon Boys (primed white)



#18 Gothik

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 02:59 AM

I`ve changed few things in my photobucket account, so, before I`ll post new pics I have to repost the older ones - for comparision purposes :D

There You go:

 1. BBQ Boys, winter camo

 

2. The Gunners, winter camo:

 

3. Recon Boys, winter camo

 

4. Spec Ops Rangers, winter camo

 

5. Spec Ops Rangers, regular camo:

 

Camo comparision:

 



#19 Gothik

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 03:33 AM

Ok, now to the new stuff… It`s been a while since I published any pics here, but meanwhile I got married, went for a honeymoon trip and had usual problems with running my company and 3-year old kid :D I also wanted to gather some stuff and to post some more stuff in one batch - there it is:

 

1. Recon Boys - regular camo:

Errors made:

The problem with Army Painters` Anti-Shine varnish appeared again - the cracked "sunburnt earth" surface emerged on many flat areas, for example helmet of the ranger on the left on the picture above or on the belly of the squad leader, just under his armor with star decal. I was really angry with this because matting is the last thing I do with the models and it is ruining your whole work. But finally I managed to find a reason of this - see below. Humble experiments with drybrushing Catachan Green mixed with Rotten Flesh are also not very visible, however, I am quite pleased with this squad.

 

2. BBQ Boys, regular camo:

Errors made:

Not very many, as I found the reason of the cracking effect after matting the minis. I was aware that matting should be done in the same humidity and temperature like the whole paintjob. But I was not aware that is has to be EXACTLY THE SAME. I was spraying the minis outside my apartment, in the staircase covered by glass roof - 'greenhouse effect' was raising the temperature there by 2 or 3 Celsius degrees in comparision to my conditions in my apartment, the humidity was also higher there. When I moved to my colder basement, the cracking effect was finally gone. I also removed more QuickShade after dipping the minis, so the coats and helmets of these guys look realy pleasant (in the beginner`s eyes, of course :). Drybrushing only with Rotten Flesh is also more visible.

 

3. The Gunners, regular camo:

Errors made:

See above :) Like the QuickShade shading effect on the bazookas, additionally drybrushed with Boltgun Metal. Coats, pants and helmets drybrushed only with Rotten Flesh, as previously.

4. The Boss, regular camo:

Errors made:

Don`t put these white Allies HQ decals on the shoulder pads - they are just too big, don`t stick very well and it is really easy to rip them apart.

I wanted to distinguish The Boss form the other squads with regular camo, so I gave them snow bases. Also added some details (like small dots of Mithril Silver on buttons) and drybrushed them heavy with Rotten Flesh only.

I think these minis turned out pretty good, but I still see MANY things that need improving. Right now I`m starting painting the A3 models - I`ll experiment with the rust/stippling techniques for the first time. 

 

 



#20 Gothik

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Posted 08 October 2012 - 04:37 AM

Haven`t been here for a while, but it doesn`t mean that I was lazy - free time is just very rare commodity to me so I`m happy if I am able to find two or three hours a week to paint. Anyway, here goes the next part of the 'Absolute Beginner Story':

 

1. Grim Reapers - regular camo:

To save time, I just leave the original green primer, just slightly drybrushed with Boltgun Metal. Rust effect - technique used for the first time - is just Bestial Brown. Errors made: corrosion would affect edges and corners of the metal plates, not 'middle' parts. Models also look 'too clean' in my opinion, even considering that I always use Army painter QuickShade Strong Tone dipping method to give a strong protective layer in addition to shading effect.

 

2. Tank Busters - regular camo:

Another experiment - I tried to paint yellow stripes on the bazooka shields with the use of masking tape and I think it worked out pretty well. I`m also pleased with the face of the unit leader - I found a tip in the web to paint only lower lip of shouting male models and it is true :)  Further with rust effects, to Bestial Brown I added some additional weathering with Boltgun Metal and Chaos Black and unfortunately it turned out a small overdose - these guys look now like they had bought they armours in some chop shop/ thrift shop…

 

3. The Hammers - regular camo:

Pretty smooth work this time - not too rusty, I added some blood on the Power Fists with homemade stippling brush. No significant errors made - except of the fact that their faces look fairly the same, so the look like clones :D

 

4. Red Devils - regular camo:

Very cool (and demanding) models to paint, lots of details. This time I tried to improve my paint-mixing techniques (note the difference between orange Power Fist and orange phaser hose or olive grenade with olive ammo pouches) . Errors made: well, I`m not very pleased with their faces (adding eyebrows made their look quite weird, painting white eye corners is also a pain in the ass). Next time I`ll try to add decals BEFORE quickshade dipping (although it is much easier to apply and  position them on very even, slicky layer of quickshade) so the arm decals will not look brand new.

Right now I am painting my A3 Allied infantry in white winter camo and man, white primer doesn`t forgive anything… More photos soon (read: in few months :D)

 

 

 






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