Things of No Interest: Painting Descent - Augur Grisom

Things of No Interest: Painting Descent - Augur Grisom

When you have a large collection of Descent expansions and figures, it can seem like a never ending project. This year, I'm setting monthly realistic painting goals. January turned out decently and knowing that February is both short and going to be busy for me, I kept the goals modest. I started the month doing a quick paint of some Reaper Bones figures for my son and his friend for a D&D game they started playing. Once done, I moved onto the figures I wanted to get done for Descent and elected to start in on a guy I wasn't very enthusiastic about painting - Augur Grisom.

As you can see, Augur is primarily a yellow figure and has a ton of little belts and items all over the belt. Color-wise, I dislike painting yellow (though I may have gotten over that with this guy now). As far as feature wise, lots of belts and crap on the belts tends to be fairly tedious and uninteresting. I figured that since this was the figure that I least wanted to do, I'd start with him before I got to a point where I kept foregoing painting because of a lack of interest. If you are wondering why I'd bother painting him at all if I wasn't interested, the answer is fairly simple - I'm painting my sets in order (in their release order, not the order I bought them or anything). Trollfens was next in line, so I choose the two heroes from the set as part of my February goal. So anyway, I got started last week and took some pictures of my work as it progressed and thought I'd explain some of the process I used to finish him up.

Per my normal method, I primed the figure with brush-on black gesso. Gesso is simple to use, and it shrinks to the model which helps to retail the details. The main drawback is that it is dark, so for a light color (like yellow) you have to apply a lot of layers to get the color right. I actually started by doing a couple of quick layers for the exposed skin (realizing later that I missed his toes). Most "dwarf" skin tones (in paint) are a little more on the brown/orange end of skin colors and since I have been trying (at least for my Descent heroes) to somewhat match the default artwork, I simply went with a standard light skin tone. I then brushed on a thin coat of tan as a base coat for the areas that were going to end up yellow and once that dried I started the process of painting yellow.

For a long time, I was nearly exclusively a Citadel paint user. Generally speaking, yellows are pretty tough across nearly every brand of paint, but I've decided that the Citadel ones are really bad. Bad enough that I finally broke down and bought a different brand of yellow paint to try (P3) and I'm glad I did. This particular brand was the right consistency (thin) but still had decent coverage. I really only had to do about two layers to get the color I was hoping for on top of the tan basecoat.

As you can see, the color seems pretty good. I have since grabbed a couple of other pots of the P3 paints and so far have been very pleased with their browns and yellows.

As something of a side note, I have about a dozen different shades of brown paint and I think I primarily use about only three of them.  Why? I'm lazy. What I've discovered is that I can paint nearly all of a figure's brown things with one or two shades of tan. Then I follow up that by using 3-4 different shades of wash/shade/ink (whatever you want to call it). The wash stains the tan and fills in the recesses, giving the figure some depth. Once I was done with the yellow, I went back over the areas that were to be brown and quickly covered them with a tan. I hit them all with a sepia wash. After that dried, I hit some of the areas that were darker in the artwork with an orange wash and for areas where a strap or whatever crossed another brown area, I hit those parts with a darker wash to differentiate the browns. I find that using this method is easier (washes just flow which is easier to get right) and more forgiving (excess tends to pool in areas that would be "shadowy" anyway) than trying to highlight every single brown with a different color. I also use a bit of pink wash mixed with some sepia to do his skin, which I think was just about perfect. I went back and used the orange just a touch on his nose and around the top of his beard to give hime that ruddy look he has in the original art.

Once the browns were in, the rest of the work was fairly straight forward - a little purple around the sleeves and the bottom of the figure as the under layer of the outfit. He has a really long beard, but that was nothing more than a dark gray with a black wash and then using a lighter grey, I gently dry brushed it a bit until the ridges of the braid started to show.

I had to paint the book he has slung over his shoulder and the various bags on his belt. By the way, books and parchment are really easy - use some bone white color - I use Screaming Skull - and then use a touch of sepia wash on the edges to get that aged parchment look. The cover was just a random blue I picked and then a blue wash. Last thing was to paint his weapon and the little ring on his finger.

One last thing to note about my washing technique - I almost never go back and highlight the areas I've used a wash on. That is kind of next level detail that I don't feel like spending the effort on for tabletop game minis. If I was a competitive painter, I might, but I usually spend more time on painting a guy than I think I should, so I don't. For some monsters whose main detail is texture I will most definitely dry brush them to highlight and give extra depth to them, but I just don't (usually) have that in me for clothing.

And that's it. Augur Grisom is done. The first of four I plan to do for the month. See you next time!

Open Seat Gaming: A Solitary Unboxing - Rise to Nobility (Deluxe Edition)

Open Seat Gaming: A Solitary Unboxing - Rise to Nobility (Deluxe Edition)

Open Seat Gaming: ~500 Review - DeathBot Derby!

Open Seat Gaming: ~500 Review - DeathBot Derby!