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Just one thing that has improved your painting


Sholto
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If you had to pick just one thing, what was it that made the biggest difference to your painting?

Mine would be a daylight magnifying lamp. A daylight bulb wrapped around a magnifying lens with a flexible neck. The daylight bulb is not so important (although it is very useful to ensure the colours will look right) but the magnifying lens is so good I would have difficulty in painting detail without one now. It doesn't make my painting any better, but it does make it much more precise :)

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If you had to pick just one thing, what was it that made the biggest difference to your painting?

Mine would be a daylight magnifying lamp. A daylight bulb wrapped around a magnifying lens with a flexible neck. The daylight bulb is not so important (although it is very useful to ensure the colours will look right) but the magnifying lens is so good I would have difficulty in painting detail without one now. It doesn't make my painting any better, but it does make it much more precise :)

I have to agree. I picked one of those babies up about three months ago, and haven't looked back. It's the best thing that ever happened to my mini-painting. That and taking advice from CreganTur (on here, WAMP, and GitP).
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I think alot of people would agree that GW washes made a big difference?! :)

For me its that and also time. I used to be in a rush or leave models with a "That'll do" attitude. Now I keep going until I'm happy which can be a double edged sword sometimes and involve stripping and repainting a number of times! :D

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A must for me before even starting was an OptiVisor Headband Magnifier. Looks goofier than hell and my daughters make fun of me when I am wearing it, but I can't imagine painting without it. I see guys painting naked eyed and have no idea how they are doing it.

Other than that, the thing that helped me the most was a wet pallet. It took the time pressure off since the paint doesn't dry out and I can focus on carefully applying paint.

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Investing in brushes.

I used to buy brushes with the idea that a Michael's $3 red sable brush was good enough. I enventually decided that brushes are something that should be bought, they should be invested in. Once I made that decision I was able to justify the much more expensive Da Vinci series and instantly saw an improvement in speed and quality.

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Honestly, learning how to pin has saved me a ton of time, because with just glue/green stuff on things like tiny showgirl arms, they kept snapping off on me and I'd have to repaint them again and get them just the right shade and respray etc...

Also taking the time to sit down and read other people's tutorials before I begin on things like skin color has helped immensely, and not being afraid to strip the paint if I need to.

I need to invest in a magnifier and better brushes though. Naked eyeing tiny little details is maddening.

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I used to be in a rush or leave models with a "That'll do" attitude...

Doesn't everyone have a 'That'll do' point??

Actually, thinking about it, I now tend to fight through the first 'That'll do' fence until I get to the 'Sod it! That'll feckin' do!' wall...

As for improved painting thing, got to be watering down my paints.

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Realizing that some people are just better painters. Accepting that I have a ceiling to my ability, and not always striving to be the best. No matter how many times I repaint this mini, it isn't going to be a studio piece, it isn't going to win a Golden Demon, so just do it as well as I am personally capable of.

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Have to say the brushes. I when I started and for years after I used GW brushes. A few years back I made the switch to Windsor & Newtons and Escoda Kolinsky sable brushes. Not only does it save money (the brushes are expensive but they last forever), it's doubled my painting skills.

My magnifier goggles/head thing, have also been a great help as I get older, eyes ain't as good as they use to be:)

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For me, the most important thing is you have got to like the miniature you are painting.

This may sound odd, but I find it is true. I painted Sonnia and Seamus real nice first go, but the ortegas I have started and stripped several times. They just don't feel right. I only got them because I play guild regularly and wanted the options to field them but i don't like the models as much as the others and I think this subconsciously affects my painting.

It also explains why I have lots of armies for warhammer, 40K, confrontation, hordes, warmachine, ancient romans, samurai and napoleonics all with a mass of primed metal and a couple of very well painted figures!

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@Bigkid this is the one I have,

[ame]http://www.amazon.com/Donegan-OptiVisor-Headband-Magnifier-Magnification/dp/B0015IN8J6[/ame]

I'm sure if you shopped around you can probably find one cheaper. I was against wearing one myself. I tried it for a miniature or two and I'm hooked.

I have one of these

http://www.southsunbeads.com/third-hand-with-magnifier-clips/

but I end up never using it, the headband one works better for me.

hope that helps:)

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