Saturday, July 30, 2016

More Super Dungeon Explore w/ an Airbrush Warning

The above picture shows one of each villain from Super Dungeon Explore: Von Drakk Manor.  There are actually many more skeletons like the ones seen on the left.  Total model count for this expansion is 43.  To save time, I relied on my trusty airbrush.  Unfortunately, the airbrush did not provide the instantly amazing results that I have come to love (and rave about on previous posts).  With the vehicles, buildings, and [sparsely detailed] space marines that I've airbrushed in the past, the minis could be considered 60+% complete after the airbrushing was done.  That is not the case with smaller and/or more detailed models.  Despite the fact that I've upgraded my airbrush to the much more precise Hi-Line Iwata ($200), small details are hard to paint and splatter is much more noticeable.  The skeleton on the far left, the green-glowy bases on the witch and flying skull and the smokey "feet" on the grim-reaper mini are examples of the bad aspects of the airbrush.  I was hoping to get a smooth fade, but the results came out less snappy than I like.  For contrast sake, the three characters in the middle were painted without any airbrush and they have the snap I like.  Unfortunately, these models also took the longest to paint.  Long story short: I've found that airbrushes should only be used to  base coat smaller minis to provide the foundation and guide for your hand-painted shadows and highlights.  For example, the giant bat in the back row was based with the airbrush, to include shadowing and zenithal highlights, but significant brush work went over almost ever inch again to clean up edges and add more contrast.  Despite the fact that I'm still brush-painting every inch, the pre-blended base coat provided by the airbrush saves a lot of the normal brush-blending-effort and is quicker over-all.  The model below is a similar case of where I based with the airbrush to get a difficult [to brush paint] purple and brown fade, but I still went over that coat with brush work using thinned downed paints to smooth the splatter.

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