Thursday, October 6, 2011

Painting for Tournaments: Putting it all together.

[This article is part of the Painting for Tournaments article series.]

I am ready to wrap this puppy up.  We have taken a long, hard look at what it takes to put a quality army onto the tabletop for a tournament.  Hopefully, you have discovered that it isn't as daunting a task as many would think.  It does, however, take some time and commitment.  To reiterate what we talked about let's take a look at this step by step.  First, we learned what not to do.  Please, please, please, don't drybrush an entire army.  It looks messy and doesn't convey that time and energy went into your army. Take the time to make your models look nice. Next, base your army well.  You don't have to go overboard on bases.  Basing can be as easy as buying premade resin bases (I like Dragon Forge's bases.) or creating a simple scheme for your bases.  When basing remember to keep it simple and easily repeatable so that you have a force that looks like every model is fighting on the same battlefield.  Third, we have to work on the models.  That starts with model prep and ends with painting the minis.

Model prep is huge when you are going into a paint judging situation.  When your models come under scrutiny, mold lines and imperfections are glaring errors.  Take the time to clean those things up before you start painting.  It pays off in the long run. 

Also remember to choose your primer carefully.  If you want a dark, brooding look or the majority of the model is metallic, I would recommend a dark gray or black primer.  If you want bright, vibrant colors go with lighter shades of gray or white.

When you paint your minis, make sure you take time and effort with them.  Naturally, there will models that need more attention than other (HQs and MCs).  Nonetheless, commit to doing a good job, not a fast job.  I generally recommend a minimum of 3 layers of color (shade, base color, and highlight) per element.  You may be able to get away with less, but I generally find that I use more.  Remember, that if you use assembly line painting techniques, you will be able to paint larger quantities of models faster.  Finally, pick out some details to really set off the models.  These things catch passerbys' eyes and really set your army off as exceptional.

Finally, put your models together on the battlefield.  Create a nice display that brings a cool backstory with your army.  Make sure you have space and your models are placed so everything can be seen and identified without too much effort. 

I hope you enjoyed this article series.  As I write, I am aware that it may sound complicated to paint an entire army and make it look good, but honestly, it isn't that bad.  It will take a time commitment, but otherwise, I believe the principles I shared are something any hobbyist can accomplish.  Thanks for reading.

Other hobby related articles:
How to Paint White Part 1: Bright White
Painting Halfway Decent Power Weapons
Tutorial: How-to Rock Bases on the Cheap
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1 comment:

JAMOB said...

Thanks for these articles, they are extremely helpful and definitely make the task less scary.

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