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Tag Archives: Hobby Advice

Hobby Advice: Top Tips to Improve Your Miniatures Photos

Taking some good quality pictures of our painted miniatures can be a real nightmare. I know for a fact that a lot of hobbyists struggle when presenting their work online because of how misrepresented, by bad quality photos, the paintjob is. Blurry or oversaturated pics can really undermine reception of our work, leading to our disappointment and anxiety, thus discouraging us from further painting attempts. Today I would present to you a few tips that should improve the quality of your pictures without a need for high end photographic equipment.

I have been painting miniatures for over twenty years now. During that time I really struggled with  proper presentation. I followed multiple tutorials, tried different cameras and setups, shadow tents and specialist backgrounds. All that “ISO”, “Macro”, “Exposure” settings mambo jumbo made my head hurt while I failed to deliver satisfactory quality pictures. With time technology advanced and became simplified and more efficient. Smartphones are so common and their cameras advanced that there seems to be no need for specialist photographic equipment anymore – at least when it comes to sharing cool pics of painted miniatures.
Miniatures photography is still a part of the hobby I loathe with all my heart, but thanks to experience acquired through failure, my work’s presentation finally feels acceptable. That’s not to say I am now a miniatures photography specialist, just that I feel comfortable to share some tips in hope to help other hobbyists feel satisfaction from presenting their work.

Some notes:

  • My camera: Google Pixel 4 set to “auto” with a three seconds delay. All filters off.
  • Previous camera: Samsung Galaxy 5 (produced very similar results).
  • Light source: 2x VTLAMP6 from Velleman.
  • As usual, please take note that what works for me might not necessarily work for you.

 

Tip 1: Camera Handling

Be it on a tripod, or just held still on a piece of Blu Tack – keeping a camera perfectly still when taking pictures is key to achieving a nice sharp image. Holding the camera in hand, even if partially supported, results in micro movements disturbing focus. This includes taking a picture manually with a push of a button. To avoid unnecessary focus loss I recommend immobilizing the camera and setting a timer to three seconds to give it some time to settle after it got touched.

Example: Camera held in hand.


Example: Camera set up on a tripod or supported.


Tip 2: Light Setup

Most common light setup I’ve seen across multiple tutorials was one main light source positioned directly behind and slightly above the camera, backed by one to two supplementary light sources positioned at the sides pointing towards the miniature. After many tests I settled on two white light sources: One placed directly behind and slightly above the camera, pointing towards the miniature. The other is placed above and somewhere between the miniature and the camera, directed away from the camera and towards the miniature. Things to look out for would be placing a light source too far, behind the miniature, resulting in increased contrast and artificial shadows, or pointing towards the lens resulting in a too bright, blurry and fuzzy image.

Example: Light sources placed zenithally, one lamp behind the miniature.


Example: Light sources placed according to the tip.


Tip 3: Background

There are multiple approaches to choosing a background for a picture. Some painters prefer backgrounds that compliment a paint job, or produce a certain “feel” of the picture. This is all fine for a more artistic themed presentation. Still I feel that presenting a paint job for evaluation should be first and foremost about that paint job, not a picture. For this reason I try to aim for a background that would present my work in the most realistic way possible without a need to adjust colors in photoshop or create artificial shadows and surrealistic effects. After some ups and downs I feel that the blue to white transition background produces the best results by far, keeping the colors natural while allowing for clean, aesthetic images.


Tip 4: Composition

When setting up a miniature for a picture it is good to position it in a way to present an interesting angle. Some poses might look awkward resulting in entire parts losing depth or supplementary colors being hidden from view. I always check the miniature through the lens of a camera before taking a shot. Sometimes a small pose or angle adjustment might result in a much better shot.

Example: Awkward pose, weapon hidden from view, supplementary color barely visible, lack of depth around shoulder and top armor.


Example: Better proportions, weapon and supplementary color exposed, more depth to one arm and top armor.


Tip 5: Cropping

This might come as no surprise and yet a lot of hobbyists tend to forget about it. Cropping and adjusting an image so that the miniature is properly orientated and centered shows the audience that the author cares about their paint job and presentation. I strongly believe that it is much easier to get valuable feedback and engagement when treating the audience and own work with respect.


Bonus tip: Cinematic shots.

All of the above tips go to waste when talking cinematic in-game shots. There’s no choice of light sources or background. On top of that cinematic shots are just as much about the miniatures as the composition and overall feel of the image. Still most rules can be re-adjusted to work in the gaming area environment. 
– Camera can still be supported on a piece of scenery or furniture, even if held in hand.
– Color depth and sharpness of the image will benefit from proper light source position (ceiling lamp behind and above head, instead up front).
– Miniature battlefields are filled with great compositions just asking to be immortalized!
– Cropping remains a thing 🙂

I hope you find this tutorial helpful and if so, please let me know in the comments below or via Facebook or Instagram. I would also appreciate it if you considered sharing this content with your friends, who might find it useful. Finally if you are looking for a professional miniatures painting service, be sure to contact me with this contact form. I always reply within 24 hours, after which please check out your spam folder.

Scarhandpainting

Tutorial: Unlimited Tiny Balls for Modelling

Forget about tiresome Greenstuff rolling! From now on, when modelling Lava bases, the only thing you’ll need to do is to pick a ready-to-use tiny ball from a box! Below is a short guide on how to gain access to unlimited tiny modelling balls.

Remember that time when you laboriously rolled about three dozen Greenstuff balls only to drop half of them on the messy floor and then accidentally squash the rest to a pulp? From this day onward traumatic events like this are forever left behind you. No more rolling, no more squashing! As of now you will be able to draw an unlimited number of tiny balls, perfect for any kind of miniatures modelling, from these three sources:


Source one: Desiccant Silica Gel

Most clothes and shoes comes pack with a tiny bag of Desiccant. Inside you will find few dozen Silica Gel balls of varied sizes. These work well with typical miniatures hobby paints and are perfect for overall modelling. 


Source two: Cosmetic Glass Balls

These super tiny glass balls come in small packs and can be obtained from many places including cosmetic stores, Amazon and Ali-express. Different sizes and colors make it a perfect modelling material.


Source three: Air Soft Guns Ammunition

Yup, you read this correctly. Air Soft Gun ammo is just a bunch of tiny balls. Usually ceramic, plastic or metal sold in packs of hundreds. The latter might be a bit expensive and inconvenient, but ceramics and plastics are great for our hobby. 


Below some practical use examples:

I hope you find this article entertaining. Be sure to let me know your thoughts in the comments below or via Facebook or Instagram. I would also appreciate if you considered sharing this content with your hobby buds, who might find it useful. Finally if you are looking for a professional miniatures painting service be sure to contact me via this contact form. I always reply within 24 hours, after which please check out your spam folder.

Cheers!

Scarhandpainting

Tutorial: Magnetizing GW Bases

Magnetized bases is nowadays new hotness when it comes to miniatures transportation. This solution allows for comfortable transportation and fast deployment of your army. Once commited to this form of handling your plastic dudesmen, you will probably go back and magnetize all of your stuff. Regardless of choice of container, be it a professional carrying case like A-Case, or just a plain paper box with a piece of metal mounted at the bottom, first thing to do is actually magnetizing the bases.

And here’s where word of mouth and slight issues might discourage you from this glorious path to ultimate wargaming comfort. The internet is full of common misconceptions about magnetized miniatures. That is because a lot of hobbyists decide to go the most straightforward way and just glue a random magnet to the underside of a base YOLO style. This might result in a magnet falling off a base mid-transport, which in turn might transform your precious collection into a pile of scrap. Below I will show you how to avoid this fate with a very easy life hack.


Before we start, some notes:

  • This tutorial focuses on Games Workshop bases specifically as they tend to have empty undersides. 

  • For conveniences sake I highly recommend magnetizing bases before painting.

  • Please take note that what works for me might not necessarily work for you.

Let’s start by toppling the topic of magnets falling off a base. This happens because the entirety of miniature’s weight is held in place by a relatively tiny spot of contact between a magnet and a base. The smaller the area of contact and the heavier a miniature – the more probable a COVFEFE in your carrying case. To avoid this, but also keep the size of magnets reasonable, I propose to use sockets. A socket extends the area of contact to the sides of a magnet and greatly increases strength with which the magnet is held in place. A proper material for a socket will also increase the bond between the magnet and plastic base.

Another thing is choosing a right size and the amount of magnets for each miniature. Personally I tend to go with two magnets for infantry, three to four for large infantry and cavalry and more for anything larger, depending on weight. The size of these varies depending on what bases I work with. For Games Workshop bases I go with 5x2mm magnets, which work as a charm, providing just enough strength to keep miniatures in place, but not as much as to prevent me from comfortably picking the miniatures. 


Boy oh boy, so much theory… “where’s the actual tutorial?!” you might ask. Ok, let’s just go straight for the easy step-by-step.

You will need:

  • 5x2mm Neodymium Magnets
  • 2mm thick foamed PVC (or similar material)
  • Cyanoacrylate Super Glue
  • 5mm thick drill
  • Modelling knife

Step one: the PVC

Start by drilling holes in the PVC one beside another with few mm in-between. No need to be very precise. Once done, use a hobby knife to cut the PVC into small two-holes pieces, as seen in the picture below. These are now “sockets” to hold the magnets in. Test if all sockets fit the bases, make some adjustments if necessary.

Step two: Mounting Sockets

Turn the base upside down, apply some Super Glue onto the surface and glue the socket on top. Avoid sticking your fingers through the holes as you might end up becoming one with the base by accident 🙂

Step three: the Magnets

Apply Super Glue into the sockets and glue the magnets in. Try to glue all the magnets in same direction for better effect. I found that it is better to put the magnet just barely into the socket, then flip the base and push it on top of a flat surface. This way the magnet will slide inside a socket up to a level of the base’s edge, thus providing good connection to a future metal transportation surface. 


Hey! That’s it! These three simple steps will greatly increase your magnets (and miniatures) survivability during transportation. I’ve been using this solution for couple of years now, with no bad experience what so ever and I hope it will work for you just as well. 



I hope you find this tutorial interesting. Be sure to let me know your thoughts in the comments below or via Facebook.or Instagram. I would also appreciate if you considered sharing this content with your hobby buds, who might find it useful. Finally if you are looking for a professional miniatures painting service be sure to contact me via this contact form. I always reply within 24 hours, after which please check out your spam folder.

Cheers!

Scarhandpainting

Tutorial: Vallejo Plastic Putty

Working with miniatures on a day by day basis has it’s merits, one of which is getting to test awesome hobby related stuff! I ordered Vallejo Plastic Putty to fill up the shopping cart, rather than because I actually needed it. Or so I thought. Boy oh boy how wrong I was! As it turned out I secretly longed for the Plastic Putty to be a part of my life.

Long story short: I have been using this ‘liquid magic’ for a whole day now and just had to share my hype with you.
What can you do with Plastic Putty? For starters you can fill all kind of gaps with it. Once dry, you can file it, scratch it, cut it, paint on top of it… and more! 

Below is just one example of Vallejo Plastic Putty application in practice.


Looks simple? Well, that’s because it is! This method is super fast. Just apply your Plastic Putty onto a crack, then use a tissue to rub the excess off crosswise. Let it dry. Done! Forget about Liquid Greenstuff – from this day onward Plastic Putty is all you need. 😉 

But in all seriousness – this stuff is pure awesome. 

If you like the article, consider sharing it with someone who likes hobbying around with miniatures. Find me on Facebook and Instagram. Most importantly have a great hobby time!

Scarhandpainting

Tutorial: Resurrecting Games Workshop Glazes

Being a commission painter, or even just a casual hobbyist, might see you grow attached to a certain line of paints. What if suddenly these paints become out of production? Having to change one’s painting habits is rough. Being left in a middle of a project, without means to continue seems even worse!

I’ve been hobbying for over twenty years now. Easy to say I have seen my share of paints going OOP. Been on a receiving end of such blows far too many times. The most recent and by far most painful was Games Workshop’s removal of the amazing Glaze series. Using these as Washes, Glazes and even Mix ingredients I grew to love them. No amount of Contrast paints will fill the void, as these are a thing of their own with different qualities and behavior.

And thus after burning (or rather flowing) though my stash of GW Glazes I started searching for a stable source of substitute. I experimented with Army Painter, Privateer Press, Games Workshop and more. In the end salvation came from Vallejo. It turned out their Game Inks are already pretty close to old GW Glazes. Few tweaks saw these pretty much spot on. See for yourself.


Lamenters Yellow

Recipe:

Vallejo Game Ing 72.085 Yellow 1 drop

Water 2 drops


Bloodletter:

Recipe:

Vallejo Game Ink 72.086 Red 4 drops

Vallejo Game Ing 72.085 Yellow 1 drop

Water 10 drops


Waywatcher Green

Recipe:

Vallejo Game Ink 72.089 Green 3 drops

Vallejo Game Ing 72.085 Yellow 2 drops

Water 10 drops


Guilliman Blue

Recipe:

Vallejo Game Ink 72.088 Blue 1 drop

Water 2 drops

There you have it. I hope this will help you refill your own bottles of old GW Glazes.

If you like the article, consider sharing it with someone who likes hobbying around with miniatures. Find me on Facebook and Instagram. Most importantly have a great hobby time!

Scarhandpainting

Hobby Advice: ABC of Miniatures Preparation – Flash & Seam Lines Removal

Removing Flash and Seam Lines – a pain of a task, yet such important one. You can be a painting god, but all your fancy brush work will be ruined if miniature wasn’t prepared properly. Running a miniatures painting service I have prepared thousands of miniatures. Below I will share with you some tricks I learned along the way.

Before we start, the usual note

  • Please take note that what works for me might not necessarily work for you.

THEORY:

I know, I know – theory is such a pain – “where are real life examples?!”. I will keep this short and easy.

Hobby Knife:

A Hobby Knife is my go to, when it comes to Seam Lines removal. When using a Hobby Knife I hold it in the fold of all fingers, except for thumb, which will be used to support a miniature and allows me for better control over the knife itself. I don’t want to cut myself so I tilt the blade about 45 degrees outwards from the thumb. This also prevents smooth surface from being scrapped (and roughed) by the sharp edge. Tiny consecutive movements are better than one smooth movement, unless I deal with long smooth areas. Somewhere in the middle of the blade is my sweet spot for cleaning accessible Seam Lines. 

  • I hold the knife with the fold of my four fingers, using thumb to support the miniature and regulate speed/pressure.
  • I keep the edge tilted outward from my thumb.
  • I work with tiny consecutive movements, unless working on a long, smooth area.
  • I try to use a spot around a middle of the blade. 

When dealing with sharp recesses, I put the edge inside, tilt it and go back along one edge, then do the same for the other side. Again I use the middle of the blade (if possible) to do this.

When dealing with rounded elements like inside of a wheel, or in a fold of a cloak, I switch the angle so that the blade faces direction of movement. I then make sure to hide my thumb behind the miniature and use the very tip of the blade to peel off the excess material. I do this with a single rounded movement of the blade. 

Finally, when dealing with tiny rounded bumps (like fingers of a fist for example) I start with a single, light movement of a blade, then switch to a sharp edge file…

 

Hobby File:

I have a lot of Hobby Files, but when I think of it – only two of them are what matters. Fully Rounded and Triangle Sharp Edged.

Back to the example picture above, I use Triangle Sharp Edged file to make a single, long, smooth movement between each bump.

Finally Fully Rounded file is being used to smooth up any Mold Lines irregularities (when two halves of a miniature does not align properly).

 

Hobby Cutters:

These are pretty straightforward. I use them to cut pieces of miniatures off the sprues and to cut off any large chunks of excess material. One thing to remember is to align a flat side of the cutting edge with the area you want to cut stuff off from. This will keep the surface smooth. 

PRACTICE vs MATERIAL:

Plastic: is the most common material one might face while toying with miniatures, so let’s start with this one. There are two main kinds of plastic. Standard Plastic, which can be colored, is a high quality durable and elastic material with crisp detail and no bubbles. Worst issues are mold halves not aligned properly, but this can usually be dealt with by applying more force to a hobby knife. I rarely use files to deal with plastic and prefer to work with Hobby Cutters ands Knife instead. 
Board Game Plastic, which is a total gummy disaster and cannot be filed (leaves tiny strains) unless put to a refrigerator for couple of hours. My personal rule is to leave it be, bad material and I just do not prep it at all. 

Resin: is the most problematic of the three main materials I have worked with. Resin is fragile, easy to break, tends to have hidden air bubbles plus it is common for mold halves to not be aligned properly. On top of that resin miniatures are sparkled with a lot of supports (tiny excess elements). On a bright side, a properly casted resin has a very sharp detail and texture, is easy to glue together if broken and can be modelled easy with a knife. 
When dealing with resin I prefer Hobby Cutters and Knife over files, using the latter only in case of emergency.

Important note: wear a face mask when filing resin. You don’t want to breathe it in. 

Metal: is pretty easy to work with. It is usually the softest of all three, can be bent easily, is very easy to file. I do prioritize Files over Knife when working with this material, except for long flat areas and fragile elements (swords etc.). Whereas scratches on plastic and resin are prominent, metal can be intentionally scratched with a tip of a File to remove Seam Lines from detailed surfaces like between hair and on a face.

 

Apart from pics, you can see me in action in this Youtube video:

Thanks for reading. If this tutorial helped you, be sure to let me know either in the comments below or at my facebook profile

Please link this tutorial to anyone who likes to learn new hobby tricks. 

Lastly I also invite you to follow me at Instagram, where I drop some nice pictures from time to time.

Scarhandpainting

Tutorial: Unlimited Painting Holders

Hobby Grips, Miniature Holders, Painting Holders – many names for a single high-demand product. Painting Holders are a topic that comes back time and time again at painting facebook groups and forums. Hobbyists seek advice on ‘which one is the best’, ‘where to buy’ etc. The thing is that in general ‘the best’ is what works for you and while Painting Holders are a rather expensive addition to your hobby tools collection – it does not have to be this way. Below is a Tutorial, or rather just a simple idea on how to create your own Painting Holders in large numbers and most importantly – for cheap.

What you need:

To create your own Painting Holders you will need any of these, or similar items:
* 30-40ml Plastic/Metal glass
* Plastic fluid container (from Pharmacy)
* Wooden cylinder
* BLU TACK

Plastic vs Metal vs Wood:

The choice of material, to create Painting Holders from, is up to you. Depending on what you choose the price, weight, re-usability, durability and aesthetics will vary. 

Plastic is the cheapest, but also the least durable. Plastic glasses work best if glued one on top of another, to improve stability and durability. Even then it will break from time to time, plus is very light, which might lead to miniatures toppling down once set up on the workbench. Plastic is a very good choice for large Painting Holders, as they are stable and not too heavy. Plastic can be easily cleaned with solvents which is a bonus, when you want to mark some information with a marker.

Metal is very durable and has great re-usability. Can be cleaned with solvents, is medium weight. Compared to professional Painting Holders, metal glasses are still pretty cheap (You can probably get between two to five dozens for the price of a single Painting Holder!).

Wood is the heaviest and has the most adhesive friendly surface. It is also the most expensive of the three and is, in time, affected by water. Still it is very classy and feels great in hand. Wood is the only one to support pins. If you like to paint your miniatures unbased, or  aim to get just a few Painting Holders, wood might be the best choice for you. 

Personally I started with plastic, but got frustrated throughout the years and moved to metal as a result. I still use plastic for larger holders, as it seem to work fine when closed at the bottom.

Preparation:

Preparing your own Painting Holders is pretty easy. Press a ball of Blu Tack to the top of the glass/container and push a Miniature onto it. Just like that – it is done! Consider adding more Blu Tack for larger holders, so that miniatures are immobilized. 

Additional notes:

* No, if properly mounted the miniature would not fall off. I have painted hundreds of plastic/metal miniatures like this and none have ever fell off the Holder.

* When choosing items to be used as holders – stay open minded! In my case the revelation of using metal glasses instead of plastic came out of nowhere! 

Scarhandpainting

Hobby Advice: Anything Can Be a Stencil

Let’s talk Stencils. There’s just so many awesome airbrush stencils out there. The world around us is filled with them, even though we’re used to pass them by without further notice…

No, I ain’t talking about these! These are all professional stencils, some of which are crazy expensive! Nope – I’m talking about all the stencils that you might already have at home and not know about it! Some may be found in the kitchen, some inside your bathroom, some can even now be in your reach, across the hobby desk!

“But Maciej, you resourceful genius” I hear you say “how come?!”

Here’s the thing: “Anything can be a stencil!” Still don’t believe me? Check these out!

Plastic Hairband

Dirty, dusty effect – why not?

Flowers Decoration

Still haven’t used, but I know there will come a time to do it 😛

Insect Repellant

Cuz there’s never enough hex in your life!

Steel Whool

I call upon thee God of Thunder!

Blue Tac

Not a stencil, but totally worth consideration 😉

Net Bag

My favorite source of elastic, detailed stencils.

Feel inspired to rampage across your home and try to find as many stencils as possible? Feel like “gonna catch them all!”? I wish you good hunt!

PS: What are yours favorite DIY stencils? Let me know in the comments or under THIS facebook post 😉

Scarhandpainting

Review: A-Case Victory 2.0 Carrying Bag

INTRODUCTION

Moving painted miniatures to a tournament or painting competition can be a real challenge. I bet that every single miniatures painter had one or more miniatures damaged while being transported. Sad truth is that no matter what we do, situations like these happens. Still, when it comes to safe transportation of our beloved miniatures, we’re not completely helpless.

In the world of miniatures painting there are two well established ways of professional miniatures transportation, both with their own pros and cons: Foam Bags and Magnetic Bags. Today I would like to talk a bit about the latter and present to you the A-Case Victory 2.0 from A-Case, one of the leading companies in the market.

QUALITY

During my years as a hobby store manager and a hobbyist, I’ve seen my share of transportation bags. This imho allows me to say that when it comes to quality A-Case is king. Everything fits, everything is smooth, no thread going wild along the stitches, inner metal casing of great quality plus the overall feel of an exclusive product.
New A-Case Victory 2.0 saw a lot of improvements compared to previous series, such as a much sturdier construction, reinforced trays, strapped side pins to keep the trays in place and more.

VISUALS

I know this part is totally subjective, but Dayum! The Victory 2.0 looks so good! Everything from design, through quality makes it feel prestigious, both in the inside and the outside. To be fair the sole look is what made me crave a Magnetic Case of my own when I scrolled through facebook and saw it time and time again. Just couldn’t resist. At least now you know why I’m so hyped about it.

FUNCTIONALITY

Coming from a position of an orthodox foam fan I have thoroughly tested this carrying case during last month. Apart from obvious features like light weight, comfort of use, adjustable strap with a shoulder pad, handle, large pocket and removable trays Victory 2.0 has some cool features that improve on the case’s functionality. A Velcro strap on top and at the front allows to attach badges, while water resistant material will keep your miniatures safe in case of bad weather. My favorite though are side pins to immobilize the trays in place. In previous series these might get lost but now attached with flexible straps they will follow the trays around.

PRICE

It’s not easy to compare A-Case’s Victory 2.0 to other transportation cases as there’s really no high tier competition in the market. Yes, there are some magnetic cases out there (Battle Foam, Tablewar etc.) but most is just out of this league. Coming at a price of around 180€ Victory 2.0 is also more expensive than foam counterpart, but it offers a totally different method of miniatures transportation. One that does not involve your paint job touching anything, even as soft as foam. One that allows you to transport large quantity of miniatures in a rather small bag. Most importantly one that is durable and will last for years to come. In addition A-Case offers free shipping around the world and in some cases (like US) that means huge savings.
For me the pricing of this exclusive product seem fair. Taking the cost of miniatures and time/money spent on painting into consideration, around 180€ seems like a small price for solid, comfortable and very aesthetic protection.

SUMMARY

To summarize, if you’re looking for a solid and comfortable way to transport your miniatures – A-Case Victory 2.0 is the thing. It looks great, it is very comfortable to use, made of high quality materials and with utmost care for detail. On top of it the case is reasonably priced. On a scale where 10 is awesome, 8 is good, 6 is ok, 5 is mediocre, 3 is bad and I don’t want to even mention 1 – I deem this product awesome! 10/10 Victory 2.0 totally revolutionized my approach to Magnetic transportation and ended twenty years of my foam addiction.

WHERE TO BUY?

Victory 2.0 is currently being produced after a successful kickstarter campaign. If you suddenly crave for your own Carrying Case, head to:
A-Case website,
A-Case Facebook,

If you’re more of a patient type and want to save some buck – wait for the next A-Case kickstarter campaign, which is sure to take place at some point in the future.

Victory 2.0 and other Carrying Cases from the Hybrid series will be available to purchase in December 2019! Stay tuned!

BONUS: ROLL BAG

Brushes and Tools Roll Bag is another product of A-Case that I really like. This smart solution of brushes and modelling tools transportation might come in handy when you plan to take your hobby on a trip, or engage in hobby activities at a local store. Personally I’ve used it to transport my tools to airbrush workshops I ran. Also took it to hotels couple of times. It’s great and I can’t figure out why it ain’t that popular with hobbyists?

Either way – I have three of these and currently use two – this leaves me with one spare Roll Bag. You’ve made it through the entire article and deserve a reward – so here’s where the surprise starts:

The top right Brushes and Tools Roll Bag (Orange) can be yours!
To join the raffle simply:
* Like Scarhandpainting Facebook profile,
* Like this facebook post and comment on it with a #gimmerollbag,
Results will be posted at Sunday 10th of November. Good luck!

Scarhandpainting

Tutorial: Basing Miniatures

In this step-by-step tutorial I’m going to show you how to base miniatures.

Basing miniatures is an overall easy thing, still every now and then I stumble upon hobbyists asking on how to properly do it. Let’s start the answer with: “There’s no one proper way, but there are certainly plenty of bad ways to base miniatures.” A quick example of a “bad way” would be if you glued irregular sand on top of a base and tried to glue a miniature on top of it with cyanoacrylate glue. Glue would go on a rampage all over the sand while it won’t hold the miniature in place due to insufficient area of contact. Another example of a “bad way” would be gluing a miniature on top of a painted base without a pin resulting in miniature being glued to paint rather than the base. This can only end badly for the miniature and your paint job. Ok, so what are the “proper ways”? Here’s three major techniques I use:

No Pin:

Some miniatures seem stable and have a large, flat area at the bottom be it giant feet, or an underside of a robe. In this case I usually go with with no pin at all and trust in the vast area of contact to keep the miniature in place.
Here’s how I go about it:

  • I start by removing the rail from under the miniature.
  • I then ensure the contact area on both the miniature and the base is flat and fit one another.
  • I apply Super Glue.
  • I glue the miniature on top of the base and use Magic Super Glue Activator to cement the glue before it spills from under the miniature.

Pinned:

I use this method in case of wobbly miniatures with small area of contact that for some reason don’t have the rail. Such miniatures require to be pinned to the base to ensure their safety and durability. Note that pinning requires additional tools as well as proper pins. Alongside a trusted hand drill you can also purchase original hobby pins, but these are expensive. Depending on how thick is the miniature I use either paperclips or a thin steel wire.

The steps I undertake to pin a miniature:

  • I ensure the contact area on both the miniature and the base is flat and fit one another.
  • I drill a tiny hole in the miniature’s area of contact.
  • I glue the pin into the hole with Super Glue then cut off the extent of the pin, leaving just few mm.
  • I drill another hole in the base, checking with the miniature to ensure it fits the base.
  • I apply Super Glue to area of contact.
  • I glue the miniature on top of the base.

Natural Pin:

This is my favorite method. I believe that a natural part of the miniature is better at holding it in place rather than a smooth steel pin.
This is what I do:

  • I cut off most of the rail from underneath the miniature, leaving just a piece or two in place.
  • I then ensure the area of contact on both the miniature and the base is flat and fit one another (except for the pieces I left deliberately).
  • I drill a large hole in the base, sometimes I even leave some loose space on top to “guide” the pin in.
  • I apply Super Glue to area of contact.
  • I glue the miniature on top of the base.

From all the other methods this one works the best for me. Plus it’s faster than normal pinning. Just remember, there’s no one proper method. If you feel like a miniature might use a pin – Just follow your guts on this and pin it. Better safe than sorry.

I might drop another article on basing miniatures in the future. Maybe some Painting Philosophy type with insight on why I paint my miniatures based and not separately. If you think it’s an interesting topic and/or if you liked this article – consider letting me know in the comments or at my Facebook profile… or even share if you think the article deserves it. 😉

PS: Check this stuff out! It blown my mind! XD

Scarhandpainting
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