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ImmortalJedi

Anyone use generic acrylic paints?

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Just wondering if I should try to pick up a set of acrylic paints at a chain store that I can mix and match, or if I should try to track down the colors I can't find at the LFGS?

 

Also, is Krylon or Rust-oleum primer any good?

Edited by ImmortalJedi

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I use Citadel washes on my miniatures but all my base colors are acrylics from Michael's and Hobby Lobby.

I know this is probably blasphemous to those dedicated to the hobby but I have been painting miniatures before Citadel and Valejo were the hobby standard and if you wanted a unique color you made it yourself. Which I did back when West End Games was the only source for Star Wars miniatures gaming. I know that dates me but who cares!

There are hundreds of colors and shades to choose from at a fraction of the cost and since you generally coat them anyway no one can tell the difference.

I don't have anything posted here yet but feel free to check out my postings in the Imperial Assault Forums under Painting and Modification under C3POFETT's Miniatures.

I still have all my West End Games miniatures and they have become my pawns for Star Wars Monopoly. So instead of 8 figures I have about 100. Wanna be Jabba? go ahead. Wanna be an Ewok? no problem. Wanna be a R5-D4 or a Gonk Droid? knock yourself out.

Edited by C3POFETT

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41 minutes ago, ImmortalJedi said:

Thanks, C3POFETT! This is my first try with painting miniatures and I'm going to be close to a Michaels today with time to kill and am going to check out what they have.

I found my self going in for one color and leaving with about 25 because I found so many unique shades that were perfect for even just small details nobody else would notice but myself. When it comes to detailing my miniatures especially Star Wars details and color are everything.

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I would suggest you use the cheaper quality paints for terrain and scenery.

 

I recommend you get a set of miniature paints such as Vallejo, Citadel, Army Painter and the like. They're cheaper if you buy a set, vs. individual bottles. You'll likely still have to buy an individual bottle here or there for a specific color like metallics, but that's not too bad.

If you pick up a basic set of artist's acrylics--around $10, the kind that come in a squeeze tube--you'll have a variety of colors to choose from for accent colors. I've mixed them with my "good" paints with decent results.

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A few more things:

1): Get good brushes & learn how to clean and store them properly. OR buy cheapy ones and don't sweat ruining them & replacing them 2 or 3 times a year.

2): Learn about a wet pallet and make one. You can find all the materials you need at a dollar shop. It will extend the life of the paint you've mixed.

3): Paint will typically dry darker than how it looks when wet. Not too much, but if you're mixing colors & trying to match one to another, you should be aware of that.

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2 hours ago, ImmortalJedi said:

Just wondering if I should try to pick up a set of acrylic paints at a chain store that I can mix and match, or if I should try to track down the colors I can't find at the LFGS?

I used to paint with craft store stuff and I frankly never felt that my painted mini's suffered even a little bit because of it.  Then I went to Reapercon last year and saw just how sad my stuff really was compared to what people did for that con.

I've picked up a nice set of reaper paints and the difference is truly amazing.  I can't recommend good paints enough.  That said, well having a nice collection of them is great, there's no reason you can mix the colors you want using the nice paints.  So if you can't find something mix it yourself.  You may want to keep a journal so you know what you did so you can create it again.

 

2 hours ago, ImmortalJedi said:

Also, is Krylon or Rust-oleum primer any good?

Myself I use Krylon or Rust-oleum as primer and I've always liked it, especially the krylon camo stuff.  It's very mat and has a nice texture to it for panting.  I'd never bother with Citadel primers, not when you can get as good if not better quality for half the price.

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The craft store acrylics are formulated for canvas. They are meant to emulate oils and as such are very thick. You can put them on the mini but will lose detail. You can try thinning them out but you will also thin out the pigments. The over priced miniature paints have more pigment to resin ratio and do better at retaining detail. You can even go to air brush paints or just straight up inks if you are looking to preserve fine detail. You can go to the craft stores for brushes though, I don't see a huge difference in price.

The best way to prime is with an air brush. The krylon paints aren't bad, cheap and certainly quick, however those miniature paints will stick better and look better on the acrylic primers designed to work with them. This is of course, all very expensive.

Best course of action for someone new, buy a can of krylon camo paint, ultra flat. They have a light gray that will work, Ace sells them. Prime with that, Then get some vallejo white, german gray (if you can find it, if not black and mix some white in), gunmetal gray and citadel's nuln oil. Watch Sorastro's videos on stromtroopers, even the old imperial assualt ones. Get a feel how it is done. Then paint the stormtroopers. You don't have to be great at them. In fact, being new, you just want them to resemble stormtroopers. Do them one at a time. Each time you will get a little better.  After you get your stormtroopers done, decide if you like painting or not. If you do, spend the money on paint. If you don't, spend the money on hiring a painter. One thing that helps a lot is while painting is listen to something. Maybe just music but pod casts and audio books work even better. Painting uses only your visual part of your brain and your audible part will get very bored if you don't give it something to be entertained with.

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If you want a spray primer but don't want to get into the complexity of an airbrush, there are a few companies that make can sprays specifically for miniatures.  The Army Painter ones are pretty solid (and they also have matching bottle paints for touch-ups and other work).

As for craft paints, they can give you an end result which is just as good as dedicated mini paints but it's a lot harder to get there.  Speaking as someone who learned to paint minis with craft paints and then switched, I would never recommend that a newbie start with craft paints.  Spend your energy learning to paint and not on learning to manage the craft paint texture and thickness.  As mentioned above, though, they're great for terrain.

Quote

You may want to keep a journal so you know what you did so you can create it again.

Quoting for truth.  Between my job and my kids I don't have a lot of time to paint, so even though I've scaled back the quality and focused on process, I still move fairly slowly, and new stuff keeps coming out.  Nothing sucks like adding a model to a force that you haven't painted in a year or two and struggling to remember what paints (or worse, mixes of paints) you used for a model.  Do yourself a favour and write that down as you go.

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I would absolutely not use generic craft paints.  They are often too thick and frankly look bad.  For the money you will spend on Legion, and the time you will spend painting, you owe it to yourself to get the right tools for the job:)

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Craft store paints will absolutely work but they definitely either require thinning, and therefore more coats, or you.just have to accept more potential loss of detail.  Id say most of the hobby specific paints are better for our use but wether its worth the price is a different question.

I use hobby paints, mostly army painter and GW, but I keep a nice big bottle of black, brown, and white for mixing shades and basing miniatures of craft store paint.

I can 110% recommend the rust oleum primers.  Theyre a fraction of the price and work just as well, maybe even better than the black/white/gray offerings from the hobby companies.

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