Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Painting with References - Knock it up another Notch!

Lately, in an attempt to improve my painting techniques I've been introducing some real life references into my work to try and get a more dynamic and interesting feel.

It all started when I bought a set of Scibor's Elven Ruins Bases. They feature a series of statue heads, and I wanted to do something cool with them. With a bit of a lack of inspiration coming from my own imagination, I thought I'd look at some statues on the internet and see if inspiration struck. Luckily, it did and I was really inspired by the green lichen and mossy mildew green stuff. It really made me want to have a go at it myself, so I layered in a few green washes, first with GW's Biel-Tan Green Shade and then with Vallejo's Olive green. It really didn't take very long, but the results were quite striking and a lot more interesting than the plain sandstone-coloured statue head that I'd been working on.

Reference and base side by side.
It was while playing the PS1 classic "Soul Reaver" that I had another revelation. I decided to take the colours from the game and did a model inspired by the palette and look of the game. It's like "Art imitating life, imitated by art" ... or something!

Now if only someone would make an actual miniature of Raziel! If they did a Soul Reaver the miniatures game on Kickstarter it'd be "just shut up and take my money" time!

The greens have made for a really nice and scenic addition to both of the bases and it's all thanks to looking at a few pictures on the internet, so next time you're struggling to think of how to paint something, try looking at a picture or two - it might be surprising where you'll end up!


  1. That looks great. The entire model looks awesome as well.

    Real life is a great reference. Go figure, right? Years ago when I was working on some trees for scenery, I couldn't get the tree bark color right. I did some research, like you did, and realized that bark is many different tones; it's not just "brown".

  2. Great work on using the pictures as reference - especially on the added green to the statues.

  3. Replies
    1. Thanks. I'm always looking to find ways to improve my painting - and I like to share what I find!