I spent the last week working on a long term commission based in the Malifaux universe. I say long term because the models were handed to me over six months ago, and I had just enough time to assemble and undercoat them before I packed them away in preparation for moving house. Spending a good month painting an apartment also dented my enthusiasm for miniature painting, so it was well into November before I felt back in the "groove" enough to return to these models. I now have a small desk set up permanently in the living room, a new pair of wireless headphones and a desire to finally put a lot of my more recently acquired painting methods to good use.
Here you can see the wet palette used for the model above, a rather cute "daydream" model. I stuck quite closely to the colour scheme on the box art for most of the models and used a combination of two brush blending and glazing for most of the work. Thinning the GW paints with P3 medium really helped control the pigments and drying time, and I used a lot of my new Secret Weapon washes for the shading and tinting. The washes and glazes were placed on a separate dry palette as I find they dry unevenly on the model if combined with too much water.
I had a lot of fun painting these three, and even repainted the daydream on the right to match the box art more closely. Starting with a lighter basecoat allowed greater depth through the use of multiple washes and required less blending of the highlights. I also used a combination of warm (cream) and cold (grey) highlights across different parts of the model to see what effect this would have and I'm pleased with the results so far. Mixing the base colour and two separate highlights on a wet palette really opens up a lot of options when adding depth to a flat surface. I also used my favourite GW glazes to tint some areas of the model which are between the highlight and shadow (this is most noticeable with the red glaze on the left model and the blue glaze on the right).
Glazes and washes also allow me to tint various parts of the model quickly without mixing in a second basecoat, a great step forward with my painting speed in the last two years (I would say that I can now paint a model in nearly half the time I used to). You can see the pink and purple washes which have tinted the tentacles on the model above, as well as the addition of a brown wash in the shadows of the orange suit. This subtle (or not so subtle) colour change can really help fix mistakes in base colour or emphasise certain parts of a model. I added some yellow around the toes for a bit of fun and to break up the long green foot. Some grime around the neck and pants does the same for the suit.
The last and most important part to share with you are the brushes I am using! I now paint with comparatively large brushes for all my models, a GW "shade" brush for basecoating, and two Windsow Newton "normal" sized brushes for everything else. After attending a painting class with Meg Maples in 2014 I have stuck with the larger brush size which allows a lot more wet paint to be held in the bristles before having to return to the palette. I have been using the same WN brushes for over a year with no problems while the GW brush is already curling after a month of use. I would love to find a good middle of the road brush for basecoating but have no problems utilising my old worn out brushes for drybrushing or pigment work. I still find it odd using a brush the size of a model's leg, but with careful maintenance of the brush I can still paint eyes and freehand designs with the same large brush size after many months of use.
I will be painting up the rest of the Malifaux models over the next few weeks and look forward to sharing some better photos with you all!