More Thoughts on Painting Inanimate Objects

23 thoughts on “More Thoughts on Painting Inanimate Objects”

  1. Very nice looking “still life” stuff, Jeff! πŸ™‚ And I think I’d go with the second mat meself!

    Now this next bit is no doubt heresy in some circles! Years ago I painted up 25mm Samurai and Ming Chinese armies (way back, before 25mm grew into 28mm) and I painted the obvious base edges black and was pleased with them. But once I moved back to smaller 20mm WW1, WW2 and colonial figures, black base edges just looked too severe, so after experimenting with a dark earth base edge I finally went with a darker brown and that’s what you’ll see on all of my figures today (Vallejo Model Color Chocolate, or Burnt Umber if I pick up the wrong dropper bottle). So, given that you’re looking at different mats, would you ever consider painting the base edges on the minis in a different colour, say a brown or a grey, which may look more closer in coloration to the mats and bases? Be interested to hear what you think! Of the half dozen or so of the group of us that played Warhammer, I was the only one who refused to use the obvious bases with big round edges painted black and instead opted for correct size but much thinner (and less obvious) washers!

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    1. Thanks, John and I will put one vote down for the second mat πŸ™‚

      This is a very good question. I’ve put a bit of thought into this before actually as I used to paint all my MESGB bases in a brown shade exactly like how you described. In my opinion, any base that is going to have a good amount of foliage or that has a normal dirt color (so a darker brown than what I use for Fallout minis) look best with the brown colored base that matches the dirt color. I think it “grounds” (no pun intended!) the base and helps it blend in with your terrain and board without the base rim being too noticeable. I’m not sure if the lighter brown would do that and many of the Fallout bases have a fair amount of dirt/cracked ground on them so that makes me that much more skeptical. With that said, I don’t for sure because I’ve never tried it! πŸ™‚ You’ve got me thinking it could be an interesting experiment to try, especially on a throwaway model which I have a couple of Fallout minis like that floating around.

      I should also add that it is ultimately a personal preference thing too. Some people, especially board gamers, really like using those transparent plastic bases so you can see whatever mat or board the minis sit on instead of what I would consider a proper base with a floor/ground modeled. I can’t stand them and think they’re ugly so its all subjective when it comes down to it πŸ™‚

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  2. Nicely done. The thing with dioramas is the scenery and everything else in the final image is just as important as the figure(s) so the same level of detail is required throughout. Clearly you have got the hang of that and when it all comes together it will be all the more impressive for the effort you have put into it. As for the quality of manufactures as you know they vary. If you haven’t already you will establish a list of tried and trusted sites for sure. πŸ™‚

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    1. Cheers, TIM! I’ll be interested to see if the finished dio has enough little details to be really visually interesting or not. Part of me wishes I could incorporate more into the scene but I don’t think that would have been easy with the scene I’m creating but we’ll just have to wait and see. I’ll be curious to hear your thoughts when I get this one done for sure! πŸ™‚

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  3. Regarding which mat, I would go with the first one. I like the buried part of machinery on the second but it limits the mat to one era/game. With the first mat you could use it I think even with Goblin Town as the cave floor.

    The gold on the chair looks great, but the fabric on it isn’t up to your standard of what we have been seeing on Alfrid’s coat and the rug. It looks too smooth if get what I’m saying. Don’t get me wrong, I couldn’t come close to what you are achieving but the danger of asking is that you get opinions. Feel free to ignore what I say πŸ™‚

    Good to know about the mold lines on the Terrain Crate set, something to watch out for.

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    1. I can make a similar argument for the first mat, too, Bret. Versatility is huge in our hobby and I only have so much storage room so I will definitely keep this point in mind.

      In terms of the fabric, that is interesting you say that it is too smooth. I tried googling some throne pictures and tried to paint something close to them and then I added some scratches to show that the throne was very much due for an upgrade. Were you hoping to see some dirt on the cloth maybe? I was hoping the scratches would do the trick but I can see where you’re coming from on that, if that is the case. I was thinking while working on the chair that this diorama may end up being a bit brighter than what was shown in the movie and I think I’m accepting of that but I’m also anxious to see how it all turns out and whether this ends up being as high of quality as I have built it up in my head. We shall see πŸ™‚

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      1. Maybe it needs more dirt along the edges of the cushions, that is where my popcorn always seems to end up. Not knowing how you are putting the diorama together I think is part of my problem, if the chair is behind the master then not so much of a problem, in between the two characters that is what the eye will be drawn to vs the Master and Alfrid.

        I hope we don’t have to wait for the game mat for the next battle report!

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      2. Some dirt there would certainly make sense. I think it might be tricky to get it to show up but I’ll certainly give this idea some more thought. I don’t mind tipping my hand and saying that the throne will be in the back (or left side of the diorama depending on which side you’re viewing it) so my intention is for it not to be too noticeable. It is more to fill out the scene.

        And no, I’m not going to wait to buy the mat for the next scenario. I’ve made up my mind on which one to buy but it ships from Europe and the birthday and Christmas gauntlet in my family is about to begin so we’ll see how much spending money I have over the next two months! πŸ™‚

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  4. Are all miniatures inanimate objects? πŸ˜€
    Yuk yuk yuk.
    It’s a splendid chair and looks like it deserves a royal rump. The objective looks good too but is that a typewriter? When was the last time anyone has seen a typewriter? When does Fallout take place anyway? But seriously it looks good.

    Don’t worry about dropping off from paleo. There’s so much work involved in getting a miniature game to the table that’s it’s natural that our enthusiasm will wax and wane. Sometimes it makes sense to focus on another project that is further along. πŸ˜€

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    1. Haha, I did tee that one up for you, I suppose πŸ™‚ And your eyes did not deceive you! That is a typewriter. Fallout is a strange universe in that nuclear bombs were dropped in the 1950’s/60’s and then the apocalypse happens as a result. Most of the video games are set years after the bombs dropped so it has been a post-apocalypse for quite a while. At the same time, Fallout does have primitive computers and robots mixed in with actual 1960’s technology. So you see really old cameras and typewriters next to a computer terminal. Its enough to upset a historical wargaming purist, I’m sure! πŸ˜€

      That is sound advice on Paleo! I’m glad I didn’t buy miniatures and have them sitting around waiting for some attention. I’m sure I’d feel worse about not following through on that ambition if I did!

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  5. Great work as usual mate. The Fallout piece in particular is brilliant.

    Whilst I usually agree with Bret, I think I will suggest the second mat. He is right that the first is more practical, I think the perfectionist in you will never be satisfied with β€œgood enough”. You will just have to make more storage space…. some how.

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    1. Cheers, grumpy! I’m actually as equally proud of the objective marker as I am of the throne even though I think the throne is painted to a higher standard πŸ™‚

      I think I’m leaning towards the second mat as I’m reading and responding to comments for the reasons you suggested. Getting both though would make this decision easier and it would be a surefire way to annoy my fiancee! πŸ˜€

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  6. Well I am not of the opinion that massive backlogs are a good thing. I think I quite agree with you. In the past I did have massive backlogs but what I’ve found is that one day I just end up selling it because I realize I have no more time and/or motivation for it and it only takes up space (physical and mental).

    Having too many projects going on, especially when physical space is a constant struggle, really puts quite a damper on hobby motivation, so I wouldn’t worry too much about shelving Palaeo Diet for a little while longer (though I would like to see it in action πŸ™‚ eventually, it does sound quite intriguing).

    Great work on the Fallout objective marker and I’m curious to see what you have planned for the diorama. The throne looks very neat and popping so I’m curious to see how it fits with the typically ‘lived-in’ feel of Middle-earth.

    As for the mat, for Fallout I would also go for the second one. Both mats fit the universe and the first one is probably more versatile (and usable for MESBG, as Bret mentioned), but I think the second one matches your Fallout miniatures better and instantly feels like Fallout while the first one feels more neutral / generic (which also makes it more versatile, so this doesn’t have to be a bad thing at all).

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    1. Getting a big backlog isn’t hard if you have money to spend and not enough time to paint it all too! It is really fun to buy new stuff but I have seen a number of people buy stuff and not paint it and then feel like their collection is a burden and I don’t want that for myself. I’m glad that the consensus is, its okay to shelf Palaeo for now too. It is a relief to set that aside and stay focused on my current projects! πŸ™‚

      The throne really is a bit bright and flashy which is totally in line with the Master’s fashion sense but hopefully it doesn’t end up making the diorama too bright and colorful. That wasn’t my intention anyway!

      It sounds like that is another vote for the second mat which is the overall winner. I think I’ll be getting that one in the nearish future πŸ™‚

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  7. I now see the model you were unhappy about the mould lines on – yeah, PVC and lots of curves are a combination from hell. It did turn out well at least, so you have that satisfaction at least! All of the the Mantic “red brick” terrain packs, including the ones with the picket fences are in hard/HIPS plastic, not PVC – so very similar to GW’s models and terrain.
    All this stuff is in HIPS – there’s also a pic of some of the other stuff in hard plastic at this link, too: https://azazelx.com/2017/02/23/stop-here-sit-and-rest-awhile-mantics-mars-attacks-stop-signs-and-benches/
    I’m going to start taking the barricades and fences to work and cleaning them up during meetings now, and hopefully batch paint them over summer.
    The objective marker looks great, how many more do you have to do now?
    As for the mat, well, I’d buy both (and I may – I need a desert mat, but have kinda been putting it off while I pay for other things and COVID suspended most of my international purchases).
    I also prefer the second one if you were only to buy one. You can easily use it for SBG by simply covering up the printed pipes with literally any piece of terrain. Well, probably. It’s a bit hard to see it in full detail πŸ˜‰
    I’d also second the idea to try a shade of brown or two to rim the base edges, remember – those can always easily be repainted!
    Also, you could use the slightest amount of art pigment/weathering powder to “dirty” the edges of the throne’s pillows. With the benefit that it can easily be wiped away and then only fixed once you’re happy with it.

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    1. The “red brick” terrain does look nice all painted up and if it is easier to deal with then that would be a big plus for me. I will keep an eye on them as I need to beef up my post-apocalyptic terrain more when I can.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the mats as well. I think the second one is the overall favorite and that is the direction I’ve been leaning so now I just have to cough up the money and buy it! πŸ™‚

      For the objective markers, that is the first one of ten so there will be plenty more of them on the site as time goes on. They really are nice pieces to have for a post-apocalyptic game.

      Thanks for the other suggestions as well πŸ™‚ I will give them both some thought (and I will be happy to try the base rim idea too for exact reason you pointed out).

      Thanks for stopping by and I’m looking forward to seeing what you’ve been up to hobby-wise when you get around to your next update.

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  8. Nah mate, it’s definitely us with the huge backlogs that are the crazy ones! πŸ™‚ No point in burdening yourself with loads of gear you don’t need. I do try to restrain myself from buying anything unless I’m sure it’s what I want and as a result I tend to find that even if I loose interest in a project for a while I always come back to it I the end.Β 

    Cracking work on both of these inanimate objects – I find the way you handle NMM particularly impressive (it’s a dark art as far as I’m concerned).Β 

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    1. πŸ™‚ For me, it is easy to resist the temptation of buying somewhat but I don’t blame anyone who is hopelessly addicted to plastic and can’t help buying fun new things, especially if that brings them joy.

      Thanks for the kind words as well! NMM can seem like a dark art but it really comes down to highlight and shadow placement (to simulate real metal’s appearance) and then smoothly blending the right colors so that it tricks the viewer’s eye. That said, it takes a bit more time than using metallic paint with a quick wash and highlight as well so there is definitely a tradeoff!

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  9. Excellent painting there, I have just spent last night looting suitcases and running around with half a dozen typewriters to break down for the parts. Personally for Fallout I would go for the second mat, but for flexibility of different things the second.

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    1. Thanks for the kind words and for the vote on which mat to get, mate! Haha, that sounds about right to me on the hunting for typewriters part πŸ˜€ Hopefully you built or repaired something cool as a reward for your hard work!

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