Thursday, August 22, 2013

Aradae Mawr: WiP part 2: Bone, blues, gold

Time to get back to finishing up Aradae Mawr!
From [img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-6lxBMlYmFNk/UhI0297sJlI/AAAAAAAAAb0/OyL_YbcOjDA/s640/blogger-image-1572135700.jpg[/img] to [img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-TfxZw04P-lw/UhgloExnvOI/AAAAAAAAAiE/9OUkDeYocXw/s640/blogger-image--589162258.jpg[/img] after the break...


Excited about where I was on Aradae Mawr with his skin and silver parts done, I moved on to the minor colors on the model. I decided blue was a decent complement to the purple skintone, so I chose that for the bindings on him.

Blues, Layer 1:
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-PQuy2vCWonY/UhI07anODbI/AAAAAAAAAcU/--doSdTnHFc/s640/blogger-image-127144448.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-6lxBMlYmFNk/UhI0297sJlI/AAAAAAAAAb0/OyL_YbcOjDA/s640/blogger-image-1572135700.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-bWPsE74HM2k/UhI2HlI5d-I/AAAAAAAAAfU/nPsFO_0BWRc/s640/blogger-image-1128974959.jpg[/img]
For the first layer, I decided to keep a similar palette and mixed 3 parts of Stormy Blue with one part SS Camo Black Brown.

Blues, Layer 2:
[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-2-zEjK70lFw/UhI2GatND1I/AAAAAAAAAfM/xd1HQL6Ar18/s640/blogger-image--438929051.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-e_urYXMyZVQ/UhI06PkUQGI/AAAAAAAAAcM/bXodcg6lq7g/s640/blogger-image-120396582.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-KNd3In0JEVk/UhI1xx_YZdI/AAAAAAAAAdM/_D5pcRJH7JE/s640/blogger-image--692836165.jpg[/img]
For the second blue, I added two drops of Stormy Blue to two drops of Medium Blue.

Blue, Layer 3:
[img]https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-msLwijz8RRg/UhI1L2GR9wI/AAAAAAAAAc0/t9OcYOyJllw/s640/blogger-image-1652545055.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-SGl8d-hTwfw/UhI139boAdI/AAAAAAAAAd0/ogqiM74qjQM/s640/blogger-image-596843986.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-ssxUSIH590k/UhI1KrYPH1I/AAAAAAAAAcs/sxk_qMPeh8U/s640/blogger-image--489935212.jpg[/img]
For the third layer, I added three drops of Medium Blue to a single drop of Sky Blue.

Blues, layer 4:
[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-RtsfTfiZpMQ/UhI0357q2kI/AAAAAAAAAb8/BD1TMzMu5zE/s640/blogger-image--702084508.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-xGTu51FSk3M/UhI1-z-GIaI/AAAAAAAAAec/0eHABg89Li0/s640/blogger-image-1280102129.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-3CUTzyr_Ucs/UhI17G3y2xI/AAAAAAAAAeE/55At2tgIeIc/s640/blogger-image--1127537113.jpg[/img]
For the fourth layer, I started with two drops of Sky Blue on their own, but the contrast was far too harsh. I added a single drop of Medium Blue to pull it back to realistic.

Blues, Layer 5:
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-irNzuRFNwkM/UhI15_lYjbI/AAAAAAAAAd8/legdTjAv47Y/s640/blogger-image-1520462218.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-k64D_e6oMr4/UhI08ixxHeI/AAAAAAAAAcc/wCQiErmiKnI/s640/blogger-image-1937484504.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-af6t4dooVpE/UhI18Sxx7UI/AAAAAAAAAeM/evWi-5KkJwQ/s640/blogger-image-1229525170.jpg[/img]
For the final layer of the blues, I went with plain Sky Blue. At this point, I began to have problems with the model. I felt the blue overwhelmed the purple skintone, and drove it further into the grey shades of the NMM silver. I gritted my teeth and pressed on, though, hoping the next few colors would fix the problem.

Browns, Layer 1:
For consistency's sake, I resolved to use the same brown mixture that I had used with Glaun, except I would use hints of purple rather than the green of Glaun's skintone. This would be a mistake, but I wouldn't realize that until I sank into the depths of despair...
[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-TkIuCWKUjpA/UhI10SmgdWI/AAAAAAAAAdc/V0GtHjyMJWA/s640/blogger-image-1517768714.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-ymj2_hb3I9A/UhI2BLoDliI/AAAAAAAAAes/4FQiyqCv98w/s640/blogger-image--292242562.jpg[/img]
For the first layer, I used four parts of Leather Brown to four parts of SS Camo Black Brown, and then cut it with a drop of Royal Purple.

Browns, layer 2:
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-yRITCxGN7U8/UhI2Djs5MdI/AAAAAAAAAe8/OtfA3rZ4TJU/s640/blogger-image--1367134677.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-HuAVlDj4MUc/UhI1M2zAqnI/AAAAAAAAAc8/nzcu72ftx48/s640/blogger-image-1437773954.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-jaH7duVlgiY/UhI1zH09-dI/AAAAAAAAAdU/E4eNAKo1EK4/s640/blogger-image-961886575.jpg[/img]
For the second layer, I used four parts of Leather Brown to two parts SS Camo Black Brown, with a drop of Royal purple.

Browns, Layer 3:
I began to get frustrated with the darkness of the browns. I added a dark beer, to see if it would help things along.
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-35S79d3mf4E/UhI1_yxQbLI/AAAAAAAAAek/NoncQjRzfeY/s640/blogger-image-1614315501.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-NDDQUS0OhU8/UhI11dsTbBI/AAAAAAAAAdk/B5yqyboZmkE/s640/blogger-image--1916715762.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-NREZXUb52hY/UhI01dJYXlI/AAAAAAAAAbs/w30tinhTQxU/s640/blogger-image-332489986.jpg[/img]
For the third layer, I used four Leather Brown to one Royal Purple. I began to get very frustrated with my entire palette at this point; the brown just wasn't getting light enough, and I began to see darkness all over the model. This frustration would only increase as this shade went further along.

Browns, Layer4: 
[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-1UI8wstmXPc/UhI19rPUuUI/AAAAAAAAAeU/DCoaNytv0bs/s640/blogger-image-2138923903.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-WSssc3wcpM8/UhI1OOH-oAI/AAAAAAAAAdE/N4NDeEbzAyo/s640/blogger-image-289749420.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-eJ-GPIhgjAk/UhI2CagvPyI/AAAAAAAAAe0/AbNjnYu0Km4/s640/blogger-image-994200032.jpg[/img]
For the fourth layer, I used two parts of Leather Brown to two parts Medium Grey, with a half a drop of the royal purple. The shade still came out far too dark. I didn't realize at the time, but the purple I was using tends to overwhelm other colors that it's mixed with, much like black does. I should have been using half to a third of the amount I was using, but I didn't realize it at the time. Instead, I started to get really frustrated. I had switched to a Winsor & Newton brush for this layer, but it was still too dark and harsh. Rather than forcing my way through it, I got discouraged and slowed my rate of painting. The browns, which should have taken two days at the most, instead dragged out over an entire week.

Browns, Layer 5:
[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-JlNJovpe-vc/UhI12gS_l_I/AAAAAAAAAds/nda7OxWulhI/s640/blogger-image--426412474.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-Ch0ApfMFcfA/UhI2E7Rx9kI/AAAAAAAAAfE/IIEqbMLfhZI/s640/blogger-image--963648388.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-624C6zApY-0/UhI05OgToFI/AAAAAAAAAcE/bsIhmqA4ABY/s640/blogger-image-16173452.jpg[/img]
After just doing a single layer the night before, I came back to the model. For the fifth layer, I used all medium grey, and abandoned the purple entirely. While this started brightening up the model as I'd hoped, it also created some harsh highlights that just made me even more upset. It was two days before I'd come back to work on the model.

Browns, Layer 6:
[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-Ud-rDYPaxmQ/UhYjiwQyVII/AAAAAAAAAgs/-V5pu7LoKnU/s640/blogger-image-1195388791.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-FkT57ngxq8s/UhYjdfihphI/AAAAAAAAAgE/8ZmlQFZj4N0/s640/blogger-image-1726108896.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-B8zpdBSFGDA/UhYjqa5rHGI/AAAAAAAAAhc/LUvK0GxJIh4/s640/blogger-image-145552732.jpg[/img]
For the sixth layer, I used a 50/50 mix of Medium Grey and Pale Flesh. Despite using the colors I was accustomed to, the layer still felt wrong. The transitions were far too harsh (because the earlier layers were far too dark). I despaired. I hit the Painter's Wall. Like a chump, I stopped again instead of just working through it. I took another two nights off. (On the positive side, though, I managed to get sleep both of those nights - normally when I'm painting I only get 4-5 hours.)

Browns, Layer 7:
[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-lTAkgeseb1A/UhYjj1crByI/AAAAAAAAAg0/4YzY7fua5kw/s640/blogger-image-2005164821.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-9uthryX8M5Q/UhYjbchV7VI/AAAAAAAAAf0/coTZqiepNkY/s640/blogger-image-746822656.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-SoSQ4eWR374/UhYjlKLSLjI/AAAAAAAAAg8/K1Ja76OxkeI/s640/blogger-image--1684968098.jpg[/img]
The model has now been "in progress" for five days longer than it should have been, four of those due to me just being unwilling to work on it. The delay means I won't be able to get a unit of these painted up in time for a local store contest, which disappoints me. However, I decide to suck it up and see what I can salvage.
I move on the the last layer on the browns. As usual, it manages to tie every layer before it into a cohesive mass, like it always does. I'm satisfied with the way it ends up, like I always am (though unlike normal, I'm not pleased with myself). The model is starting to pull together. All that remains is the remainder of the armor. Flush with confidence for getting past the browns, I decide to go insane...

Time for the gold! I used to have a fantastic blend of colors I'd use for NMM gold that I could do in my sleep. However, it's been three years since I've used significant amounts of it in a model. Rather than test out my paints to ensure I know what I'm doing, I just plow forward!
Gold: Basecoat
[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-FgIEs6sP9L4/UhYjaWJMHxI/AAAAAAAAAfs/YOtVdZkK-LE/s640/blogger-image--1726716351.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-spIryydV1SA/UhYjrbliLEI/AAAAAAAAAhk/8EFRDI7N-Yo/s640/blogger-image-1679763377.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-l_I8ouSv8Wg/UhYjnkoLIpI/AAAAAAAAAhM/jcTctZhKpu0/s640/blogger-image-1129348086.jpg[/img]
I decide to contrast the purple skin and otherwise excessive darkness of the model, that I'm going to go with bright, gaudy, shiny, eff-you-I've-got-bling gold. To start, I paint all the to-be-gold parts of the model with Plague Brown. However, I've not used my Plague Brown in three years. As a result, it takes three coats to adequately coat the model. I finish off my belgian sour and get something much, much stronger to make the inevitable wet blending more tolerable...

Gold: Dark portions
[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-NOcvZgPXcEg/UhYjo57GmyI/AAAAAAAAAhU/ivAm-5ioBus/s640/blogger-image--1684502689.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-cUABAw11kZ4/UhYjcad_wuI/AAAAAAAAAf8/_ULIuFO3YZg/s640/blogger-image--1908240483.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-38bduveptyk/UhYjs7pd8KI/AAAAAAAAAhs/1K_AwWA2YKw/s640/blogger-image--1777912412.jpg[/img]
To darken NMM gold, I use a remarkably simple process. Figure out where the dark/light contrast point on the section I'm painting is. Draw a line across that point with SS Camo Black Brown. Wet blend that Camo Black Brown downwards into the Plague Brown layers below it. This will create the illusion of the ground reflecting light back up onto the metal portion of the model, and also create the illusion of a horizon on the model. Whereas I generally just do "what feels right" highlighting with silver, I go very reflective with the gold (which is why you see a harsh line for the top of the browns). The next layer will increase that contrast, and shockingly, make it look reflective.

Gold: Highlights
[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/--ZB48L4MwjA/UhYjfoV1PTI/AAAAAAAAAgU/qUc1s_NiA1c/s640/blogger-image-1853908137.jpg[/img] [img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-rPTHnKHkWvk/UhYjZNqWNmI/AAAAAAAAAfk/QABw1latfZ0/s640/blogger-image--205285972.jpg[/img] [img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-g5HBNGwazu8/UhYjh93bjtI/AAAAAAAAAgk/x3BHOfHIcFA/s640/blogger-image-1255059255.jpg[/img]
For the highlights, I do the opposite of what I did for the brown. I pick a yellow (in this case, Sunny Yellow) and draw a line right above the Camo Black Brown line. I then wet blend it upwards, into the Plague Brown on top. For those of you worried because the tops of the metallic sections are darker than the middle, fear not: there are still a few steps to come.

Gold: Reflective Highlights
[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-hK6T8WpKpBM/UhYjeukLJxI/AAAAAAAAAgM/rIOxXYkbTew/s640/blogger-image-1196338674.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-ngXR9uclwoY/UhYjgsJGxqI/AAAAAAAAAgc/pmnQIOnxCoU/s640/blogger-image--755366412.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-E9i1QS072-8/UhYjmbvpWjI/AAAAAAAAAhE/m7UCHkB9PIg/s640/blogger-image-1239400820.jpg[/img]
So, we've got darkness, and we've got highlights to simulate the sky and the ground. For our penultimate step, we want to add our light source reflecting off the metal. To do this, I take Pale Flesh, and using a very small brush, brush it over all the points where the metal changes direction. Specifically, the edges of every armor plate, and the tops of rivets and chain links. In addition, I use it anywhere a part of the gold portions is pointing straight up, to simulate it reflecting the light source above. Inspired by some of the other works I've seen, I also added a few "sunburst" effects, to create the illusion of the light scattering when it hits the armor.

Gold: White reflections
[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-TfxZw04P-lw/UhgloExnvOI/AAAAAAAAAiE/9OUkDeYocXw/s640/blogger-image--589162258.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-hoEmfTyHhU0/UhgllmBUguI/AAAAAAAAAh8/c5DSXdTQ-jA/s640/blogger-image-239629668.jpg[/img]
[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-bNqga-iqsQI/UhglqMxcpTI/AAAAAAAAAiM/AVw4LDe0GEo/s640/blogger-image--2058160951.jpg[/img]
 Finally, I added a touch of white to simulate the light source reflecting off the gold.

The model is still not finished - I still need to add some red for the eyes, tongue, and gem in the sword, as well as basing it - but it's done being shared online until the WAMP contest. I'll add another WiP with those steps once its done!

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