As most of you are aware, I have been practicing painting heads and faces over the past few weeks. I try and do one a day but being on holiday and busy means that sometimes it’s not always practical. Above, you can see all the heads I have done so far. The one on the left was the first.
I rather liked the dot method of painting eyes that I highlighted before, but when I tried to paint iris’ on, it didn’t work too well. A friend over on twitter linked me to a different way and so I gave it a try. This was the result!
His eyes are way too anime to be called good, but for a first attempt at a new method, I was pretty pleased. I look at it now though and think it’s rather funny. Some of the comments were fun, but I had to have another go to make him look less kawaii…
This is a step in the right direction for sure. The black around the edge of the eyes makes it look more realistic and less anime. The left eye is neater than the right and I am wondering if I should try using a magnifying glass as it is hard to see. Maybe I am being too picky with it and practice is going to be the cure in this case. Either way, I look forward to painting those Death Company marines, who will have red eyes and look crazy!
The Daily Head seems to have been rather successful on twitter and so I have decided to share how I am doing the skintone practice with others. This is the method I learned at Seige Studios on their course. I have others I want to try out as well, but seeing how I have already got a few heads base coated, I wanted to stick with this way until I need to make some more.
Step 1: Base Coat.
I airbrushed the bases of all the heads starting with Cadian flesh, moving on to Kislev flesh and then a final highlight of Flayed One Flesh
Wash the entire head with a very watered down Seraphim Sepia.
Recess shade all the recesses with neat Seraphim Sepia.
Recess shade two thirds of the recesses with Agrax Earthshade – not watered down/thinned.
Recess shade one third of the recesses – started from the nose/centre of the face, with Nuln Oil.
Black out everything that is not the face – this will stop the mind getting confused while you focus on the face. We are trained to know faces from birth, so keeping the face upright will also really help with this. Also shade in the eyes! I use black 70.950 by model colour for this as it is a nice matt black, but Abaddon Black will also suffice.
I have a special brush for eyes. It’s a fine detail brush with the point cut off to make it flat – this makes excellent dots without the point slipping and creating a mess. Use this amazing dot brush to place a dot at the two sides of each eye, as shown. Most of the time, this gets rid of the boogly eye that you get when you dot the black in the middle.
Also, highlight the ‘T Zones’ of the face with thinned down Kislev flesh. If you want a paler look, Flayed One Flesh would work here too.
Here is my progress so far. I know my brush control has improved from the first one. Things can only get better from here too. Just keep practicing!
Earlier this month, I did a hobby audit to see where I thought my skills were in relation to some techniques. It helped me highlight areas I thought I needed to practice at and how to work on boosting those numbers. One of the areas was skin tones and included in that was faces.
While on the Siege Studio course, there was a large section dedicated to this, so I dug out my notes and have prepared several heads to practice what I have written down.
To start with, I pulled out all the heads from Space Marines who do not have helmets on. I have rather a lot of these, which is great! I then glued them to cuts of used sprue and undercoated them:
The next task was using the airbrush and the notes I have taken to ceate the basic skin tone. The base is Cadian Flesh, followed by Kislev Flesh and then a light dusting of Flayed One Flesh for those interested.
I now have enough heads to do one a day for the next few weeks. I plan to post my ‘daily head’ on twitter and then do a post at the end of the tub to see whether I have improved or not. I hope so for sure. I then might start experimenting with darker skin tones and seeing how that goes. Until then, let the Daily Head commence!