Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Kampfgruppe Bäke Log Part IV - Test Models are for Beginners.

Don't know if everyone reads the comments, but someone had suggested that I try things on test models.  I don't really believe in that.  I'm a developer by trade, and in that world your test "environment" has to be exactly the same as your production.  I take painting tanks the same way.  If I try some new technique you never know what can affect the results.  So, I'm not going to paint an entire tank exactly how I want just so I can test using something new.  You never know what kind of chemical reaction can occur.  I may try BF's pigments on a test model where I didn't spray it with hairspray, paint it white, and try to scrub it all off.  It may look completely different.  I just can't justify painting 2 models every time I want to try something new.  especially since I almost always try something new on every model.

What I usually do is test most things on Transports that are part of the army.  For instance I tested a lot of this stuff on the kubalwagon in the armoured artillery battery.  Because most of the time transports don't matter.  I don't even have to take that piece if it turns out really crappy.  my HQ and scouts can just start unmounted.

But, everyone has their own way, and different things work for different people.  I just have too many things to paint.  I'd rather have a crappy model painted that I can fix later then more unpainted things.  If this Bake army doesn't turn out, ill leave it as is, and then some time down the road i'll put it in the Simple Green and try again.  This actually really works out for me because usually 6 months to a year down the road my painting has improved so much that I would end up wanting to paint it over again anyway, even if it was really good at the time.

Well, I've painted all the tracks muddy, and let some of the spray go up on the tank.  I really like this effect rather then using a brush.  Then I used devlin mud thinking it would make the creases darker.  It didn't.  So once again I'm still having terrible troubles with washes.  I just can't get them to do what I want.  Maybe I just have to go to a pen.

To be honest painting all the tracks like this was a total cop out.  The one thing I absolutely hate (because I suck at it) is painting the damn road wheels on tanks.  So, these tracks are full of mud and snow.  

I've started adding snow using Tamiya sticks, the same as the mud ones I used before...except snow.  I love these sticks, they work great, but they seem to get on the raised parts instead of more in the creases.  It's far more obvious with snow then it was with mud.  I'm going to try doing a bit more manual work on them today or tomorrow.  But using the 3 foot rule they definitely look like they are driving through snow.

I also tried for the first time the BF pigments.  Wow, these things are awesome.  I was really nervous about using them. (to bad I didn't have a test model.) And its really hard to find people who know how to use them.  One thing I did read is that most people use paint thinner with them.  Well that's just fine and dandy, but how much?

So, I said to hell with it and just tried it.  It turns out it doesn't really matter how much paint thinner.  Its not like mixing paint to go through an airbrush.  I brushed it on and it when on with a gritty texture.  It looked great.  I made the mistake of thinking it was going on like paint, because when it dried it turns back into a powder and still comes off on your fingers.  NOTE TO SELF: do pigments very very very last.

I put pigments on the gun barrels and tracks on the hull.  I'd have to say I really like how they look.   With the airbrushing my tracks and pigments, I'm thinking of totally revamping how I do tank tracks.  Pigments are now a MUST!  We'll just see how they look after the varnish.  Might have to do them again after.

So here is what they look like so far.  Again crappy pictures taken at workstation with phone...But I am almost done, so I will be good pictures soon.  Think I want to do a bit of pin washing, a bit more details, and I have to do the commanders.



  1. I really like what you have done on the tracks with the snow. I really like the weathering on the white wash. The fact that the white wash is a bit too much intact distracts a bit, I would advise you do break it by using a sponge dipped in dark yellow and/or dark grey (do test on transport)

  2. that's how I was originally going to do it before the hairspray idea. I'm not sure I want to try it now with all the weathering and wash done.

    if you look closer the white wash does look broken up and dirty...just not as much as I liked. The half-tracks worked out better then the tanks did.

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  4. The snow tracks do look badass... I can't wait to see these on the table up close.

  5. lol, man you got to read the whole post. Chris didn't take offence to the Hairspray is for chic's title because I didn't like how it worked. If I was really calling you a beginner would I have bothered explaining why test models don't work for me?

    This is not a blog for people that take offence easily. I guess that wasn't as funny as I thought it was in my head...oh well.

    If I took offence to everything people said I would have been pissed about the "use a test model" with the tone like I've never done this before. which is really why I put the title in. Which technically most of the stuff on these models I have never tried...Guess I should have tried a test model. :)

    Oh well, haters are going to hate. that's why I say what I want.

  6. I think they look great Kage. The chipping on the tanks looks excellent to me: visible, but not over the top or overdone. Snow clumped in the tracks and on hulls is also effective though it looks a bit too stark in places compared to the weathered vehicles IMHO. I detest pigments with a passion, but you've done really good work with them here.

    And FWIW I'm still not brave enough to try this, so take it from whence it comes!

    CdlT is your blog, say as you like. If people want to be offended and act condescendingly, that is their choice. I for one prefer hearing honest opinions, even if they differ from my own.

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