Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Balrog Miniature - painting progress pt1

Last summer I got into playing with and painting miniatures, being a massive Lord of the Rings fan the strategy battle game instantly grabbed me.
For my birthday last year I got the Balrog Miniature which I've been slowly painting up ever since. As a force of habit I'd been taking progress photos, after showing those around a bit I've decided to blog them up for anyone else interested in miniature painting and Warhammer to see!

Apologies for the quality of some photos, they were all taken with my phone!
I have used the Citadel paints for this, however as they're acrylic based I have also occasionally worked in some of my own acrylic paint and mixed colours for better variety and tonal blending purposes. I also assembled the entire miniature apart from the arms, which I felt would be better attached at a later stage. I'll then be able to paint his body and wings without the arms being in the way!

I'll probably have every professional miniature painter out there screaming at me for not doing an undercoat right from the off, but I was just experimenting to begin with here. I knew the effect I wanted to achieve so I went for it!
Beginning with a red (Evil Sunz Scarlet) between the scales of his back, neck and lower portion of the plume of flame, I then blended in an orange (Troll Slayer Orange) working that into the cracks of his scales and further up the flame.

Next I blended in a yellow (Averland Sunset) for the head of the plume of flame and, where it'd be hottest I worked in some white (White Scar). I mixed a pale yellow here also to dry brush onto the ridges of the flame to accent their shape.

Next up I began working on his head, again painting red into his nostrils and mouth as a base.

Adding the orange, yellow and finally white in his mouth and eyes where you'd see the white hot centre of his core.
That's the kinda feel that I was going for, that the Balrog was made of molten rock. The outer layer having cooled and hardened, appearing like black scales, however the hot molten core visible where his scales part.

Anyway, the rest of his head I painted black (Abaddon Black)!

Unsure where to go from here I actually began undercoating the Balrog's torso with brown (Doombull Brown). After looking at other painted Balrog miniatures I noticed that in most of them the Balrog's body appeared to be painted in a solid black, which was a shame as you lost all the detail! I wanted to try and achieve something much more subtle where you could pick out the shapes of his muscles burning under his flesh.

I watered down the red paint and washed over the brown, allowing it to settle in the crevices of the Balrog's neck and body. This I'd hoped would again add to the effect of the creature being made of molten rock, the brown adding a subtlety to the colour of his skin and the red intensifying the heat of his core, not to mention showing off that six pack!

Now it was time to finally start painting on the black tone of his skin!

I used a combination of techniques here, dry brushing over the scales of his back and neck, and also painting with a wash to allow some transparency and the brown of the undercoat to show through giving a leathery look to his torso and neck.

I'll leave you there for now, the next step is to paint the Balrog's wings!

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Pet Portraits - River the Rat!

You may remember a (long) while back I drew my pet rat Kaylee as her namesake, Kaylee from Firefly? (click here to see it)

Well, let me introduce you to my other fuzz ball. River is a powder blue, dumbo rat and is now a year old! She is of course named after River Tam from Firefly.

As all Browncoats know River loves to dance, so I've drawn her mid-leap wearing the dress and cardi from the episode "Objects in Space".

I'm open for pet portrait commissions, so wether you'd like a caricatured version of your pet in this style or a more traditional portrait of your furry friend, then get in touch!
As always my email is