Weekly WIP: BMG Contra-Auguste Finished
There is a pattern to learning, I find, which can be incredibly frustrating to someone who doesn’t understand it. Whatever skill you are practicing: sports, video games, painting, you will find little moments of greatness. Moments where you achieve more than you think you can. The moment is fleeting and in its wake there is a sharp and noticeable absence.
So it was with my last miniature. I achieved a level of quality on the blending of the skin and shirt that lies just above the upper edge of my skill level. Like a mirage before a thirsty wanderer I was fooled. I’ve seen this before but still succumbed to the temptation to think that this was where I now stood as a painter. Pride comes before the fall.
You see, what I had achieved was merely a glimpse at my possible future. Yes, I can paint to this level but what I had was a combination of luck and skill. The next step is to work to making this fluke into a consistent outcome. In the meantime overconfidence leads to a slight dip in performance.
Enter Contra-Auguste, the Joker clown with a horrible name. This miniature began poorly as the arms were miss-cast, something I tried to but didn’t succeed at cleaning up. I’ve tried to use paint to camoflague the issues but with no luck.
After priming and flatting I was able to tackle the flesh, mask and hoodie in a single sitting. The hoodie should have been a field day but my colours just couldn’t blend. This would be a problem through-out the painting process, my blends were not only not as good as the blends on my last miniature, but they felt worse than I normally manage.
Painting the pants and black straps didn’t help anything either. I’m still struggling with the glossiness of colours like black and red, which makes judging highlights and blending nearly impossible for me.
I was also trying to paint the bat in a NMM aluminum, which turned out to be much harder than I anticipated. I’ve had some luck with NMM in the past but it has felt like a real struggle. Plus the dull shine of aluminum was hard to represent. In frustration I ended up painting the bat a generic wood colour and calling it a night.
In fact, I just finished this miniature to the best of my abilities and called it done. There’s no enjoyment banging my head against a miniature that doesn’t want to cooperate. I need practice to translate what I achieved on the Knife Clown into something that I can achieve on every miniature. I’d rather have this practice painting different miniatures than grinding my gears on a single one.
I have no expectation that my next miniature will be better. I hope it will but I could end up with the same issues. At least I’ll be one more miniature closer to having my Joker band painted and at the end of the day that’s why I’m painting these. So far I’ve only flatted the miniature. It’s not as neat a job as I normally achieve but it sufficient for the task of laying out colours.
Have you ever come across a miniature that just didn’t want to cooperate? Perhaps there’s a colour that just doesn’t seem to like you. Tell me about it in the comment section below. You can also reach me on Google+ and Twitter. Don’t forget to subscribe for more.