Sorting my paints out!

Having some time over the weekend I decided it was time to sort out my collection of paints, washes and inks.

Painting more models now, meant that I have been going out to my local games shop to buy new paints. I realise that I must check what I have before buying paints, I now have three full pots of Ushabti Bone as well as two pots of Death World Forest. I wanted these colours, but didn’t realise I already had some in my collection.

I knew I had a few boxes of paints on my workbench, sorted a little by age, but there were various other paints across the workbench and a few hanging around with some sprue and stuff. I also had some paints that I had picked up from copies of Warhammer Conquest as well. I went through them and sorted them by make and colour. Sadly there were way too many I had to throw out due to age and being completely dried out. My painting history in many ways is defined by my paint purchasing history.

Like many (older) gamers I started painting my early Warhammer models with small tins of Humbrol enamel. My painting was very much followed my painting of Airfix and Matchbox model kits. Single colours, no shading or highlighting.

I do remember on a visit to the first Games Workshop shop in Hammersmith and looking at the models there on display marvelling at the amazing paintwork the painter had achieved, also having no real idea about how to even some close to that.

The Citadel released their acrylic Citadel Colour paints back in 1985. There were two set and individual colours. I remember buying Set 1 which included classic colour such as Skull White, Chaos Black as well as the never covered anything Sunburst Yellow. I do remember really liking the Enchanted Blue and using that a lot on some models. The boxed set cost £4.95 with individual paints at 60p each!

I used these paints a lot over that time to paint models. Some were difficult to use over black undercoats, so much so that often I would paint over the undercoat with white paint to ensure the colour would cover the part of the model I was painting.

My painting technique also started to evolve as well, though I did enter the first Golden Demon Award, I never stood a chance of winning!

I started initially using a black undercoat, and in some cases then just drybrushing the models. No basecoats, no layers, just drybrushing! This really didn’t work very well and so moved onto base coat and highlighting with some dry brushing on those kinds of things that work well with drybrushing, such as fur and wood.

Though I did start to use some blended and highlighting techniques and some of my models I was quite pleased with from that time.

I did start to use a fair few Tamiya Acrylic paints, in the main for bases. Their more naturalistic subdued and military colours made for better colours for bases I thought. Their Flat Green was so much nicer I thought than the Goblin Green that you would see on GW models.

Another paint I used a bit at this time was the Humbrol Acrylic range. Very small pots in comparison to Citadel and Tamiya, but they did have one drawback, the lids soon became very ill-fitting due to dried paint, so they would dry out so much faster than other paints in my collection.

One dramatic change to my painting technique was the release of the Citadel Inks. The Chestnut ink was a staple of my workbench for many years, though I didn’t like the glossy effect you got with the inks. 

It was a revelation when I realised, that by adding some ordinary paint to my ink wash, it would remove most if not all of the glossiness. That  changed how I would paint my models.

So when the inks were places with washes, Devlan Mud and Gryphonne Sepia were used extensively.

Another Citadel paint I liked a lot were the Foundation paints. Tausept Ochre became my most popular colour and too many of my models were painted this light sandy brown. I loved how they easily covered a black undercoat. The new Base paints are not as good.

When I got into Flames of War I knew I would need some other kinds of paint to paint the tanks and infantry, so I made quite a substantial purchase of their paints to paint my tanks.

This introduced me to the Vallejo range of paints. Being able to buy these from  a local model shop, made painting much easier, though I was finding it difficult to find the time to paint.

Having made the decision to paint some of my old 40K models, I checked over my blog how I had painted some of the models. The big challenge was that much of the Citadel paint range that I had used back then was now no longer available after Games Workshop changed the complete paint range.

Luckily there was a few places on the web to find out which old paints were replaced by which new ones.

Deciding to paint some models with BoltGun Metal and discovering that wasn’t available, and my last pot had dried up I placed an online order for its replacement, Leadbelcher.

Having sent off for some of this paint, I also included the Ork Flesh Contrast Paint in my order, as I was interested to see how these would work for my Orks. In a test I decided to paint the Krew of my Forge World Ork heavy weapons with the contrast paint.

I have to say I was quite impressed with the results on only a single coat. So much so I bought some of the others in the range to use on different models.

I know I have been painting quite a big as I am now on my third pot of Seraphim Sepia since the beginning of June! I am a fan of the shades, as they allow me to create effective paint schemes without too much effort!

I am never going to be a Golden Demon painter, I don’t have the patience, nor the eyesight, let alone the time to paint something to that standard. What I am trying to do now is paint the models so they are completed to a good level (for me) and they look good on the table.

Washing the Bommer

The stage after painting the base coats and the details on the boomer I thought the next stage would be relatively much easier, however I was mistaken.

I was using a variety of Citadel shades initially, I left the boomer to dry. I found one of them I was using left a residue on the model. I was lucky that I was able to remove the residue with water and some kitchen towel. I am not sure what caused the problem, maybe one of age of my paints or not mixing it properly.

In the end I am quite pleased with the end result. What I was trying to achieve was a weathered aged look that is the result of a complete disregard to maintenance or care for the bommer. If this was a human Imperial Guard plane, it probably wouldn’t be able to fly, however as this is an Ork aircraft, it flies because of the sheer will of the pilot.

The next stage will be drybrushing, but in my next posting about the bommer I will look at the engine and engine details.

…and a little bit more.

Paint disaster aside, I spent some time painting a little bit more of my Ork Stompa.

Here are the feet.

The main problem with the paint was twofold. The first problem was with my Citadel foundation paints they were quite old and had dried out. Second problem was with my Citadel washes, which had gone weird and no amount of mixing could sort them out.