Sunday, 24 December 2006

GZG grav armour; painted

These did not come out as I had hoped. The basic idea was to paint them in the current Swedish armour scheme, which is a splinter pattern in two shades of green and black. The first hiccup was when my preferred lighter green didn't have what it took to cover my mid green. So I wound up using a greyish green which gave the right amount of contrast but not quite the look I'd wanted. Then it turned out that it's actually quite hard to lay down a splinter pattern on such a busy and cluttered hull, so the patterns weren't quite as neat as I had hoped. However, the thing which just ruined it was the decision that I needed to emphasise the hull detailing by giving the vehicles an ink wash. This went on far too black and blotted out all the colours without really emphasising the detailing at all. And it couldn't readily be undone without starting the painting from scratch, which I wasn't in the mood for. So I retouched the lighter green and then dry brushed the vehicles heavily to reduce the excessive darkening caused by the ink wash.

That just left me wondering about the grav plates; after a lot of dithering I abandoned my initial idea of painting them blue with metallic blue highlights and settled for painting them silver with a green ink wash and dark bronze edging. The ink wash here worked out fine, settling well into the grooves and providing a useful streakiness on the raised areas.

Basing was done very simply; PVA glue brushed onto the base, then shake the base in beach sand. Let the glue dry and then recoat it with more glue to bind the sand and stop it shedding. A useful side effect of the second coat is that it darkens the sand and punches up the contrast between different grains. Dry brush with buff paint. Dab on yet more glue and then shake the base in micro foam flock.

I'm abashed about the ink wash outcome. I'd never had much luck with ink washes in the past, but then tried diluting the ink with Johnson's Kleer floor polish, which breaks up the surface tension and stops it from beading on the flat areas. It worked like a dream with 15mm infantry figures - the scale reference figures in the earlier shots were painted simply by washing them in one solid colour, inkwashing them heavily and then dry brushing them with the base colour again, giving an effecitve enough shaded effect for very little effort. The results are less inspiring when applied to big areas.

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