Saturday, March 7, 2015

Painting By Numbers - Reaper Bones Well of Chaos

Just an innocent looking well.

This is the Well of Chaos (77136), one of many miniatures I received as a reward for backing the first Reaper Bones Kickstarter. The Well of Chaos represents some kind of font holding holy or unholy water from some god, goddess, or weird alien thing worshiped by hooded cultists. Any resemblance to an ornate toilet belonging to somebody with more money than sense is purely in the eye of the viewer.

As with my previous attempts to work with Reaper Bones plastic, I decided to experiment with an alternate technique for priming and painting this piece. A post on the Reaper forums titled "The First Coat is the Difference" recommended using FolkArt's Glass and Tile Medium as a primer after cleaning the miniature. The main issue with Glass and Tile Medium is that it is completely clear. It is very hard to tell if the miniature is completely coated while applying the Medium. The solution is to mix the Medium with acrylic paint to make it opaque. Any color will do, but I used black paint to allow the mix to act as both primer and a base coat.

Over the black base coat went a layer of dark gray on the stone parts of the well. I was careful not to completely cover the base coat to bring out the cracks in the stone. A layer of brown went on the parts of the well I was planning on painting gold. Brown works well under gold - it adds a little depth since metallic paints are sometimes translucent and the two colors do not contrast or "fight" with each other.

Light gray was used to highlight the stone parts. A layer of metallic gold went on the metal parts.

A purple wash was applied to the stone parts to convey an otherworldly aspect to the well. Descriptions of strange statues in fantasy sometimes note an odd hue to the material used to make them.

Totally not suspicious. Just walk right up and get a drink!

The inside of the font was painted blue to convey depth. A small amount of Woodland Scenics Realistic Water was used to produce a shiny surface. I was originally going to use a thinner layer of Realistic Water, but the process of poring it proved a little trickier than I expected. Using Realistic Water was also an experiment on my part. I had no previous experience with the stuff and I have a future project that may need it.

Overall, I am pleased with how the Well and how it turned out. Some of the detail on the miniature could be sharper, especially in the areas depicting metal pieces. Using FolkArt's Glass and Tile Medium resulted in a durable surface that holds paint well. Mixing the Medium with a little paint allowed me to combine the priming and base coating steps. This is definitely the way I'm planning on preparing the vast numbers of Reaper Bones miniatures remaining in my collection.

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