Painting Battlemechs

About fifteen years ago, if you had asked me about painting miniatures, I would have told you “no thank you.”  I attempted it in my early 20s, didn’t really have the patience for it, and abandoned my efforts.  I didn’t really have a proper art teacher.  But, with some tips from painting experts like Jack Irons and painting enthusiasts like Donnald Johnson, I’ve come quite a long ways.  And I have the Battlemechs to prove it.

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Not exceptional, by any measure, but I would say “good” for sure!  The front three rows are older 25th Anniversary Introductory Box Set figures.  The back for rows are from the newest release of that same product.

The red/black Mechs follow my school’s colors.  The Camo Mechs were my second serious attempt at painting and it went well.  I touched up both of these groups and re-sealed them the last few days.

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The purple/gold, dark green/blue and white/sky blue arctic paint schemes are all new paintings over the last two days.  They turned out really well.

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On DJ’s suggestion, all of the Mechs have numbers on their bases to make it easier to identify specific Mechs.  I proxy liberally, so a Panther miniature is rarely, if ever, representing a Panther stat sheet.  The numbers are just clear hobby stickers intended for scrap-booking and I’m concerned that they will eventually come off.  They are slightly locked in with paint and the spray lacquer that I used to seal all of them.  I thought about putting a layer of Tacky glue over the numbers, which should dry clear, but I’m concerned that it will have enough opacity that the numbers may be tough to read.  I’m going to test it to be sure before I commit to it.  Another option would have been decals.   I didn’t like the decals I saw at Michaels and was looking for an immediate attempt at the number goal.

These Mechs are all painted with a combination of Citadel hobby paints and generic Michael’s acrylic.  I found a rainbow of twelve colors in a small set for five bucks.  That’s about the cost of one Citadel paint.  I realize that die hards will say that dedicated hobby paints have more consistent pigments.  They may be right.  They know more than I do.  But, for my purposes, they worked fine.  I’m not trying to win any painting contests.  I just want something that looks good while playing.  The Michael’s acrylics need to be thinned a lot, but otherwise worked just like the hobby paints for my purposes.  They are apparently “pure” colors too, because I was able to mix red and blue to get a nice purple and then lighten it up with a little white.  It did not make a “brown” as I have read is common with mixing “non-pure” blues and reds.  I have found my short foray into the color wheel very interesting.  I like thinking about optics and the nature of pigments from a physical perspective.

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