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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Studies in Brown

Previously I have discussed my desire to break away from my usual bright colours and explore different, more subdued palettes. To that end I chose to do a series of figures using only brown and to further limit that to only three shades.


32mm sculpt from Hell Dorado


32mm sculpt from Hell Dorado


32mm sculpt from Bombshell Babes


28mm sculpt from Reaper Miniatures

The browns I used were from Reaper and are as follows: Chestnut Gold, Palamino Gold and Buckskin Pale. All three browns have a yellow and orange bias.  For belts and accessories I used Reaper Ruddy Brown. Painting with such a limited palette forced me to focus on brush control and to focus on contrast to gain separation between areas.  

Recently I have been going for a more stripped down look with my basing. I'd fallen into the habit of basing for display purposes, which can sometimes detract from the miniature. With the exception of the Reaper Figure, I sculpted all the bases myself.  

Currently I have 5 figures on the painting table and four of them require the use of vivid palettes, so I am not going to be giving up my colour on a permanent basis. Rather I am attempting to become a more versatile painter. And to further that end, I hope to begin work on a "Shocking Secret Project" sometime within the next two weeks.  This project is so unlike anything I've ever done before, even I am shocked by my desire to undertake it. 


77 comments:

  1. Nicely done Anne. They're a credit.

    I like your 'challenges'. Always interesting.

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    1. Thank you Gary. After I've cleared what's on the table, I'm onto a new one.

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  2. Very nice indeed. I like your restrained palette choices.

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    1. I know you don't like my bright colours at all.

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  3. Really a good work :-)

    You' re adopting a more modellistic and realistic style ;-)

    Marzio.

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    1. It looks like you guys are finally rubbing off on me :)

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  4. Love your choice of colors, great paint job Anne!

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  5. Very nice work.
    I was exited by the first ones when you entered them to Curt's painting challenge already. ;-)

    Cheers
    Stefan

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    1. There's a change not only in palette but in the types of figures I'm buying. I hope you guys like the new stuff I'm going to be getting into.

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  6. Nice! Really like the details on the third one.
    A lot can still be done even with one basic color. As you said, it's all about shading. Like working with only pen and ink.

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    1. That's exactly it. Exercises like this force you to focus on getting basic things correct. Clears out all kinds of slop.

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  7. Hola Amiga
    Pues me gusta como as usado los colores,la elección de tres colores es muy buena para la soltura de las mezclas,si te gusta eso prueba hacer una figura con negros y blancos,yo lo di en un curso y es fantastico
    UN SALUDO

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    1. Thank you J.D. I did try a grey scale once but it didn't turn out quite right. I need to try it again, but first do a bit more planning ahead.

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  8. Top notch Anne. I think you are a bit of a master now matey.

    I would have never have guessed they were all browns!

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    1. Thanks Paul. I am a master, but really only a master of blarney!

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  9. Nicely done, the browns of the world salute you.

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  10. I haven't visited in quite some time but I can tell you're constantly improving. The detail is what really stands out to me. Excellent work!

    And no, this is not a "fake" return the favor comment. I wouldn't come here if I didn't like this blog.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Dan. I really appreciate it!

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  11. I'm shocked your shocked over your shocking shock of a revelation. So shocked. Not shocked they look great though, the first one may poke out an eye, that would be shocking. Are you shocked I'm so shocked? Might get shell shocked over the shock. Shocking......

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    1. It's all so very shocking. Just the shock of it shocking you has shocked me so much I'm shocked. It's like I've stuck my tongue right into a light socket kind of shock. Hopefully I can actually paint what I have planned. I hope so as it cost The Hubby a good bit of money!

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    2. Now I'm actually shocked he ponied up the dough lol

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    3. He bought himself a new guitar, so he can't really say no to me for a while :)

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  12. Wow, amazing work there! Love how the muted tones worked for you. Is there any specific spot you research or read to find these techniques?

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    1. I hang out at Reaper Forums. You wouldn't believe how nice the people are there and how willing they are to share knowledge. I go through everyone's comment sections as people will just write out brief tutorials and add links as they go. And they've a Help section and if you ask a question, those people show up and answer it. I highly recommend it.

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  13. I think working with a limited palette like that is a great idea. I think you have done a marvelous job with all three of those minis. Your selection of brown would warm the heart of my friend Phil who tends to use lots of browns as well. I'm currently doing my own study in brown, but that will have to stay under wraps for a bit longer.

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    1. Are you working on a competition piece?

      I'm buying so much paint right now and am focusing a lot on browns and muted greens. Also doing a bit of reading on colour theory so I can mix properly. Finding the time to learn and to paint is difficult, so it's usually one or the other at any given time.

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    2. Pick up a basic set of PrismaColor colored pencils, high wax content and easy to blend into new colors. A little different from painting, but you can grasp color theory pretty quick with them and it's cheaper than using some of the more expensive model paints!
      Beautiful work, Anne! Don Quixote and squire were fantastic...er... are fantastic!
      Really good job on them! For the record I do like your vivid color use and think of it as your signature! ;)

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    3. Yes, its for the ReaperCon competition. I'm pleased with the way its coming along right now. Hope to have a second piece done as well but we will see how that goes.

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  14. Great paint and work as always Anne , this two female model is really greg , i love it .
    Compliments .
    Slainte!

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    1. Thank you Vincent. I'm always glad when my work pleases you as you are a master painter.

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  15. Brown is my least fave colour in the world, but you did brilliant job with the shading, dear! Practices like these could benefit you a lot because you will learn to master all the individual colours and especially their shades, dear

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    1. It's my least favourite as well. I despise it in Nature as it means death. When I see a brown field, I know crops have failed, when I see a brown patch in my yard, I know something is wrong. I've deliberately avoided using it. But I've recently found this satiny brown that is delicious and I've just used it on a pair of stockings.

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    2. and when we see a brown spot in the grass we know a kitty pooped there :PP
      I agree with you, dahlink. And I can wear brown only when it is really dark chocolate shade.

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    3. My kitty Fang never poops in my yard. She's goes to other peoples lawns for that. She's such a good kitty.

      Yeah, I don't often wear brown either. But I will wear a deep brown jacket sometimes. I also don't wear clothes with patterns. Just one solid colour, no stripes, designs etc. Strange, isn't it.

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    4. She is well trained... my cat poops in other people's yards only when I send him on a revenge mission :)
      I on the other hand, dear, always wear stripes, always! But it is because stripe hide everything and I look better in them.... Some might even call me a king of stripes :) But me is like a zebra - I know how to wear them :)

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  16. Very nice! I like the Bombshell Babe in particular. Looking forward to the Big Reveal in your Shocking Secret Project!

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    1. She's my favourite as well. Patrick Keith does a great job on those Babes.

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  17. Tell me the secret project…I won't tell a soul, I promise! =P

    Anne! That Blonde Bombshell could be you! Did you notice the likeness? I certainly did - classy but tough. So you. Yep, I'm really loving these toned down colors(?) you're doing. The red base really made that figure pop. Well done!

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    1. I'm almost nervous about even trying this as it's not at all what I usually do. There's always the chance I'll fail and I won't post it of course. But I will ask for help on how to get it right if that's the case.

      She does look like me when I was younger, when my hair was cut like that. I'm working on one now that is meant to be me as an Assassin. Now she doesn't look at all like me, but I needed a Steampunk figure and it was the coolest one I could find.

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    2. Bruce just phoned in saying he noticed the likeness too :) I bet you was a perdy perdy Irish lass when you was younger, Annzie, just as you are perdy now too!

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    3. Poor Bruce, he's a broken man and we should pity him. Thank you darling, at my age compliments make me glow all day :)

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    4. dahlink, you is so perdy that you should post your new pics here every week for the world to enjoy them :)

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    5. I have no worry about you failing. It's when you don't try that you've really failed. Besides, how long have you been painting? And, look how far you've come, how many different techniques you've learned and now mastered. I can't wait to see your new adventures!

      Oooh, an Assassin - that sounds like a fun figure to paint!

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    6. I had my two year painting anniversary in March and bought myself some new figures as a reward. These figs aren't anything like my usual stuff. Mainly Modern pieces and I'm liking it. They are also easier to paint!

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  18. I really do like those babes, beautiful work Anne!

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  19. Muted colors they may be, but your artistry has brought out the life in them. Wonderful work as always, Anne.

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    1. I had fun doing them as they were all such nice sculpts. I'm getting spoiled with the 32mm figures!

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  20. Nice work! I especially like the last one.
    (Theoretically, my new minis should be here sometime next month. Hopefully, I will get set up to do some painting in June.)

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    1. She was the most difficult. She was an "awkward" sculpt as her lines weren't very good. And I had a hard time working with colour that light and getting depth.

      I hope yours come on time. It seems like more of them are delivering very late and some not at all. After school is out, I hope you find time to pick up the brushes as I'd like to see your work again.

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  21. Second try. Your posts really make me want to connect my phone to HD wide and big screen tv. They look amazing. I like the choice of figurines too. You show lot of variety. Now working on 50 shades of brown? ;)
    They sure look hot and lovely.

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    1. Thank you. There are so many kinds of figures out there yet to explore and I'm one of those people who won't stick with a single genre. I go all over the place.

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  22. I have no experience with paints, but I imagine with subtler shades of brown and tan it's all about the shadowing and layering of color. And these look amazing.

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    1. You're exactly right. You have to start with your darkest colour, the work up slowly in thin layers to your lightest. Then you make a very, very thin glaze of your darkest and apply that to tie the layers together and get depth of colour.

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  23. excellent work Anne...who knew browns could be so flattering !! the base in figure three is amazing....
    and if your shocking secret project shocks Pat, it's has to be the shock of the century !!

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    1. It is hard to shock the Cat. I've been trying for three years now and this is the first time I've done it..

      Hey Cat, feck off.

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  24. excellent of course !
    when you do something you do it perfectly ...

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  25. I just never get tired of seeing your stuff Anne. Always something different and always well executed.

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  26. Mission accomplished! Limited palette doesn't limit you at all. And your basing is, as always, spot on. I do love the sniper best. I've had a thing for girls with guns since your O'Leary Girls. ;-)

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  27. Looking forward to the secret project reveal.
    cheers

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  28. Most impressive Anne!! I am amazed...three colors!?!?! Go you! looking forward to more!

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  29. I like how you challenge yourself. You don't wait around for someone else to give you an idea, you just pluck them yourself.

    These are really cool. I really like how you separated everything with the bombshell babe. They all look tough, but I can see it better myself there.

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  30. Lovely work Anne. I look forward to seeing you return to experimenting in cool tones again. Those are some of my favourite colours but can get a bit clinical looking - Nonetheless I think you do a nice job on them.

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    1. I've got a bright one that just came off the table a Noir one just behind it and then a Hasslefree after that. Lots of variety!

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  31. Oh, and congratulations again on being Sarah's Choice for this year's Challenge. I was delighted when she 'revealed' her decision.

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    1. I was gobsmacked and The Hubby and The Spawn are very proud of me. Thank you and Sarah!

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  32. Perfect!!! The russian is stunning...perfect shading and highlighting. More of "studies in Brown" please.

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  33. That's just plain impressive. I like that you're doing personal challenges. A great way to improve your skill, and improve it definitely has.

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