Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Just follow Sarge!

     Yet another Imperial Guard update. I'm very excited as things are actually moving forward. My camo paint scheme seems to have established itself on the models well enough that I'm no longer second guessing my finished results. I've managed to add the sarge, and a melta gunner to my previous two models. I'm going painfully slow on these, I know, but the results are rewarding, and I'm happy enough to just slowly plug away like this.

     I was listening to a 40K related podcast this afternoon (came highly recommended from a friend) called "The Independent Characters" and their latest edition deals with 40K campaigns. Just the mention of campaigns starts my imagination racing. The main reason I enjoy 40K as much as I do is the fiction. The back story to the universe is just super slick to me. I haven't yet had the pleasure of playing in a campaign, and I know I have some friends back home in Texas that feel the same. Sadly, geographically speaking, it's impossible to carry out these wishes. I'm hoping that the next few years separated from my homeland will give me amble time to come up with some cracking good ideas for a started campaign, and hopefully enough time for my friends back home to hammer out some armies and strategies. Perhaps I might find some time to find some local campaigns to get my feet wet in the meantime. We'll have to see.

     Something that I might not have mentioned, but I certainly want to share with everyone that might read my blog: Decals and Microsol!

     First decals. I've avoided decals up until now. I've had a fear of them ever since, as a young impressionable child, I messed up a perfectly good Ferrari model car with some horribly applied decals. I've never forgiven myself. Coming into 40K about a year ago, the fear re-emerged as strong as ever. I've only now just started to use them on these Guard models. I quickly discovered the drawbacks:

- "Halo" effect around the decals makes it look obviously not part of the model
- Lumpy decals across curved surfaces
- Glossy surface obviously sticks out against the matte effect of model paints

     I was determined to fight those ill effects. The "halo" and glossy problem can be fixed in the same way. All you simply need to do is paint over as much of the decal as needed to hide those effects. The lumpy decals on curved surfaces seemed a harder problem to solve. Fortunately I remember hearing about Microsol, which is a nifty product that, when applied to a decal, manages to make them lay flat against most surfaces.

     I've been using on my models and it really works great. If you decide to pick some up, here are some good tips on using it:

- Apply only as much as to cover the surface of the decal. Too much and it starts to mess with the paint.
- Be patient and apply multiple coats for those larger decals that are a bit more stubborn against laying flat.
- Microsol seems to work even after it is apparently dry, so just wait before applying those follow-up coats.

     I feel silly for not having used decals before, now that I know how easy they can be applied and how much they can add to a model if done right. Don't be afraid to paint on the decals to show wear and tear. You can even use washes over them. Experiment and have fun. You should have plenty of decals from the various sheets you get to test out a few ideas. I recommend lightly dabbing a tiny bit of sponge in some paint and then dabbing that on top of the decal. It creates a quick and natural scratched or chipped look.

     Here are some more pics of the sarge and the melta gunner. Hope you enjoy:


Drathmere said...

keep up the great work! This color scheme looks really good. It makes the guard look more modern, which I really like. Micro sol is a god send! I recommend that everybody use it. If you can't find it vinegar will do, but the models will smell slightly off forever.

Sam said...

I had noticed the vinegar smell to Microsol. It basically smells like Windex. I remember hearing Sean from Blue Table Painting talking about Microsol and how he suspected it to be mostly vinegar. I think it probably has some alcohol in there to assist with the evaporation of the vinegar making sure the model doesn't stink. Regardless, it's only like $3 for the bottle and you never need it in great quantities so I assume this amount will likely last me for a very very long time indeed.

That's a great tip though Drathmere. Thanks for the comment and I'll keep painting away! Cheers.

Papa JJ said...

The camo pattern and color scheme look fantastic... great work!