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My Approach

I start the painting process typically with a basecoat of either Liquitex acrylic white gesso, or white paint (Humbrol orange, yellows, and browns for horses).  Usually two coats, to ensure a nice solid coverage of the metal or plastic figures.  Until recently, I used Liquitex acrylic black gesso, or paint, but have moved away from it since it dulls brighter colors, requiring an extra step of two to do them justice.

Anyway, after basecoating, I tend to use a mixed media approach.  Winsor-Newton alkyd oils are ued for for large areas with smaller details picked out in either Humbrol enamels or Citadel (ex-Games Workshop) acrylics.

The brushes I use are mostly Cottman synthetic by Winsor-Newton, but I do have and use a few 000 and 001 size sable brushes for tiny details.  However, I have found that my painting skills have improved somewhat over the last several years, and as long as I use brushes with good (i.e., 'fairly new') points, even a #2, #3, or #4 round will work for most detailing.

Finally, I have reached the point where I am satisfied with neatly painted figures that look good at arm's length.  I no longer feel the need to spend considerable time and effort, or ruin my eyes further for that matter, trying to paint really tiny details that no one but me, or painting pedants, will notice.  It speeds the painting of large units appreciably and is an extremely liberating way to approach figure painting.


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