Saturday, October 19, 2013

The Ninja in the Woods

My Patron has been particularly generous lately, and as such I've put a bit of an emphasis on the commissions he desires.  So far it's been a lot of OGRE stuff, with still more to come, and as it's the launch party of the Designer's Edition of OGRE this makes the perfect opportunity to show some off!  First up we have the Ninja OGRE, and the paint scheme for this was quite simple:

Bet no one will see a skyscraper-sized sentient tank painted all in black coming, am I right?  In spite of the simple scheme this one required a touch of finesse.  Pure black, like any single color, is very featureless.  I actually mixed in black with a dark grey, and while it looks black it's actually not a completely flat black.  It does rely on natural lighting to pick out the features a little, and because of that I made the sensor dome (disco ball on the very top) a dark grey, and the missiles a solid night blue.  These will help to give a sense of definition and allow the viewer to pick out the details.

The other treat for today is an OGRE Mk VI painted up in ATACS camo.  What is ATACS you ask?  It's a camo great for blending into the woodland background.

If this looks familiar you might be thinking back to Lictalor the elf and his cloak.  In that write up I tried to do an ATACS style cloak, but the technique I used was primarily drybrushing.  For this commission I decided to use a more thinned/water-color style approach.  As with Lictalor I started with a bone/khaki base:

The fun part of using very thin paints is that they go on QUICKLY.  Easy flow makes for quick work, and while normally it can produce a sloppy piece it actually works in my favor as it gives that splotchy look meant to hide details.  Looking closely at ATACS you can see that there's very little of the basecoat visible, and what looks like the base color is actually a very light grey-green:

I covered a lot of area, but if I tried to cover more I would've ended up just coating the entire thing a second time.  I knew that as I went the thinned out paint would flow and move very easily, and thus help to cover some of the extra areas.  Up next is the drab olive green that people will think of as the "main" color when first glancing at the piece.  I missed a series in the photos which shows this green exclusively, and you'll see the next step as well:

The camo pattern is broken up here and there by patches of darker color.  That's what the dark green is, along with a hint of brown and some leafy green.  Working with thinned watery paints is really fun.  You only need to thin out the paint to a milky consistency, and the result is remarkable.  The water will loosen the paint and carry more pigment into recessed areas, which is a great way to get shadows on your figures, all the while leaving less color on the raised areas.  If you have a brighter undercoat this will leave hints of a highlight.  If you don't have a lot of time to paint and want to get some models painted up quickly that look decent you just have to put down a basecoat and follow it up with a wash.  They won't look perfect, but it'll be a nice little trick if you want to get figs on the table.

Moving on, I needed to hide the dark splotches (actually a very dark brown).  They're meant more to act as tiny shadows rather than to break up the overall color.  So what I did was to take a leafy green and paint over most, but not all, of the brown areas:

Rather than being like leopard spots they're just hints of darker color dancing among the rest.  After letting the paints dry I started to feel like the green was a bit *TOO* stark.  So what I did was to take my main "green" color and really thin it out to a point where it was very transparent.  I then decided to go over the recently painted areas in an attempt to dull them down and blend them in.  The end result worked out quite well in my opinion.

You'll notice that I painted the missiles the dark green, which I did as a means to add definition by adding contrast.  The amount of contrast is just enough to not break up the pattern as one looks at it while still giving the illusion of camouflage.  Overall I'm pleased and feel that my patron will feel equally pleased.  Two OGRE's ready to add to the rest for delivery.

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