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WIP Critique Young Miniatures Gordon Highlander

Discussion in 'vBench (Works in Progress)' started by Eludia, Mar 24, 2015.

  1. Eludia A Fixture

    Hi all,

    With all great intentions I was going to build a plane as my next project but it wasn't long before the interest vanished so I plucked this one from my Grey Army to, hopefully, restore my modelling mojo.

    He is from Young Miniatures and, as usual from this company, it is an excellently sculpted piece. The kit comes in 6 parts, I love the simplicity of figure modelling :), the head, bonnet, torso, Trotter pack, bonnet ties and a support pillar. Detail is excellent throughout but I spent a bit of time with a scriber and scalpel cleaning out the deeper areas and adding a bit more definition to the the strap edges etc. I also drilled out the holes in the straps to add a bit more depth.

    To make painting easier I decided to paint the head and bonnet as one piece, I also attached the support pillar to the torso to paint as another sub-assembly, the pack and bonnet tails will also be painted separately and, with a bit of luck, everything will all come together nicely at the end (famous last words).

    So far, I've put together the sub-assemblies (filling and cleaning up as required), mounted them on various handles and got some primer onto them. I've got a club night tomorrow and won't be at my bench on Thursday either (probably.....maybe) so the primer should be nicely cooked by the time I revisit him on Friday. Then it'll be time to crack open the oils :)

    Gordon Highlander-3.jpg Gordon Highlander-1.jpg Gordon Highlander-2.jpg
    BarrieHynd and Grod like this.
  2. Nap A Fixture

    Looking forward to seeing this come to life

    Hope you get to the bench soon!

    Eludia likes this.
  3. Eludia A Fixture

    Hi again all,

    My day at the bench yesterday never quite panned out the way I hoped (does it ever?) so I never got much done.

    Basically all I did was lay an acrylic undercoat onto the red areas, I use Jo Sonja craft acrylics almost exclusively now for undercoating as it dries very flat so gives a good surface for the subsequent oil coats to "bite". In this case I used Brown Madder as it is pretty close to the brick red colour of OR tunics (SNCO and Officer tunics used better quality material and dyes I believe, and so were brighter, a bit more like scarlet).

    I've decided to try and paint this piece using a limited palette, not as a money saving exercise (too late for that), but just to prove to myself that it can be done. My palette is shown below, it is based loosely on the famous limited palette used by the Swedish artist Anders Zorn (http://michaellynnad...m/zorn-palette/). I'm using Paynes Grey as my "blue" rather than Ivory Black but I still have that on standby :)

    Gordon Highlander-4.jpg

    This morning I managed to get the first red blending layer on over the undercoat. I mixed a nice green from Yellow Ochre (YO) and Paynes Grey (PG) and then used it to "knock back" the brightness of the Cad Red (CR) to a make it more like a brick red. This was applied as a scrub coat over the acrylic undercoat. Initial shading was done using a bit more of the green to darken the red further. Once all the initial wet-on-wet shading was done then it was off to the drying cabinet till tomorrow (after taking a few pics of course). I'll deepen the shadows and add some highlights when this first layer is fully dry. This is how he looks so far (the yellow facing on the collar and epaulettes is just YO mixed with (a lot of) Titanium White(TW)):

    Gordon Highlander-5.jpg

    Gordon Highlander-6.jpg

    Gordon Highlander-8.jpg

    Gordon Highlander-9.jpg

    Stay tuned for more, the next test of the limited palette will be skin tones (maybe later today).
  4. BarrieHynd Well-Known Member

    Staying tuned to this for sure Billy, got a few red tunics to do myself so will be taking notes.

    Eludia likes this.
  5. Eludia A Fixture

    Hey again folks :)

    I spent a bit of time this morning sorting out my photography setup, so hopefully you'll find these photos a bit better looking, I'm certainly a lot happier with them. Its surprising how much you can hide with a decent photo setup ;)

    I played about with some skin tones last night till I stumbled upon something I was happy with. The face has come out somewhat flat in the photos though, there is a lot more contrast when viewed in the flesh (pardon the pun).

    The good news is I still haven't deviated from my limited palette - YO + CR +TW for the basic skin tone, highlighted with a bit more TW and darkened with CR and PG for warm and cool shadows respectively. Not the normal skin tones I'm used to but if we did the same thing all the time life would soon get boring ;) I normally just add white to Burnt Sienna then shade with more BS and highlight with more white (this is a good approach for that "fresh spraytan" look)

    I also went back over the red tunic to smooth out and deepen the shadows (no pics yet though, I took these before I reworked the tunic). I also added some highlights using neat CR (in very small quantities). Highlighting red is always a problem area as it is very difficult to do wet-on-wet, if you add white you get pink highlights and if you add yellow you get orange highlights. My method for this piece was to highlight with the brighter CR once the first coat was dry, blending the highlights into the base coat.

    Anyhoo, I've bored you enough, here are some pics (comments and critique are most welcome):

    Gordon Highlander-9.jpg Gordon Highlander-10.jpg Gordon Highlander-11.jpg Gordon Highlander-12.jpg Gordon Highlander-13.jpg Gordon Highlander-14.jpg Gordon Highlander-15.jpg Gordon Highlander-16.jpg Gordon Highlander-17.jpg
  6. Eludia A Fixture

    Just realised that I will have to deviate from my plan at some point. I failed to take notice of the elephant in the room i.e. the stonking great big brass buckle in the middle of his chest, and also the various smaller metal buckles and buttons. NMM scares me a little and I don't fancy going down that road, even with a full palette, so it looks like I'll have to crack open the metallics at some stage.
  7. Eludia A Fixture

    A bit more progress :)

    I've given him some hair colour, I was going for a stereotypical ginger jock but I think I've overdone the yellow in the highlights so when the paint is dry I will try and gingify it a little more with a reddish glaze. Base for the hair is YO with a spot of PG and CR, highlights are YO + TW with a tiny spot of CR.

    The eyes aren't done yet I might add, I just popped a dab of paint in each to act as a marker for later and to reduce the "zombie" look a little.

    I have to admit I'm feeling a bit chuffed at the minute that I'm still managing to stick with my limited palette, it is surprisingly versatile and somewhat liberating. I think I'll be able to forgive myself if the only deviation I make is the addition of some metallic printers' inks :)

    Thanks again for tuning in and, as always, comments and critique are most welcome.

    Gordon Highlander-18.jpg Gordon Highlander-19.jpg Gordon Highlander-20.jpg Gordon Highlander-21.jpg
    Scotty and Wings5797 like this.
  8. smudger1960 PlanetFigure Supporter

    Well it's a very good start billy,this is a very nice bust which I enjoyed painting a while back,I look forward to seeing what you do with this one mate
    Eludia likes this.
  9. Eludia A Fixture

    A bit more progress over the long weekend. His bonnet is starting to take shape, I'm really impressed by the moulding on the feathers and the hackle and I'm trying my hardest not to obliterate all that lovely detail under globs of paint (like I usually do). I also started refining some of the details on the torso (those white straps are a proper PITA for sure) and also made a start on his pack.

    The dicing on his bonnet is looming closer and closer, I won't be able to avoid it much longer ;) I'm still debating whether to try and do this freehand or to whip out the masking tape, either way is not going to be easy methinks but at the moment I don't know which way will be less painful. Any comments will be very helpful ;)

    I'm generally happy with the way things are going so far but, as always, comments and critique are most welcome.

    Gordon Highlander-22.jpg Gordon Highlander-23.jpg Gordon Highlander-24.jpg Gordon Highlander-25.jpg Gordon Highlander-26.jpg Gordon Highlander-27.jpg Gordon Highlander-28.jpg Gordon Highlander-29.jpg
    DaddyO likes this.
  10. Ron Tamburrini A Fixture

    Cad Scarlet will give you a nice subtle highlight on top of Cad red " a pricy pigment but a tube will last a lifetime :) works well wet on dry or wet on wet
    Wings5797 and Eludia like this.
  11. Eludia A Fixture

    Cheers Ron (y). The closest equivalent in the Artisan range is probably Cad Red Light. I'll keep an eye out for cad scarlet when/if I switch to "normal" oils (I just ordered a small selection of Jackson's oils and some zest-it so maybe some time soon ;))

    However, for this piece I'm trying to stick to a limited palette so my only red, in this case, is Cad Red Med which I think is probably bright enough for the lightest lights for the ORs brick red tunic. The bonnet dicing may be another matter though, we'll see how it goes.
  12. DaddyO A Fixture

    Nice work Billy - The idea of a fairly limited pallet appeals not only to my impecunious nature, but also my artist temperament. IMO it seems to make a figure 'hang' together better as well as helping with a sense of colour balance. Love Paynes Grey and always try to mix 'black' from dark brown (Burnt umber) and Ultramarine blue which gives a lively shade with more depth than straight black (In fact I try to avoid using black if I can; when mixing with it I find it deadens colours and I think it's too stark used straight from the bottle/tube/jar)

    (As I retire to the sandbagged area and await any incoming) :rolleyes:

    Enjoying watching this one come together
    Eludia likes this.
  13. Stephan PlanetFigure Supporter

    Thanks for showing progress, like it.
  14. Eludia A Fixture

    Finally got some pics of progress so far. The head is only temporarily attached with blu-tac at the minute, basically because I couldn't be bothered photographing it seperately and it gives a better idea of the overall picture.

    Still to do:
    • Brown leather water bottle strap.
    • Bonnet dicing.
    • Paint and attach rear bonnet ties.
    • Metals.
    • Red areas on right shoulder board need a bit of tidying up.
    • Eyes.
    • Final touchups and mount on base
    • Weathering (optional, I haven't decided yet)
    • Have a celebratory beer (or 3) ..... the most important final touch, obviously
    If you spot anything I've missed then feel free to point it out. As always, comments and critique are most welcome; I need all the help I can get ;)

    Gordon Highlander-30.jpg Gordon Highlander-31.jpg Gordon Highlander-32.jpg Gordon Highlander-33.jpg Gordon Highlander-34.jpg Gordon Highlander-35.jpg
    Perseas, Stephan and MCPWilk like this.
  15. Scotty Well-Known Member

    Cracking job so far, I'm loving your work. I'm no expert on the Gordons but shouldn't the hackle be white?
    All the best,
    Eludia likes this.
  16. Viking Bob PlanetFigure Supporter

    I have only just found this and will follow as I have the bust from Dollman minis 42nd black watch to do. superb paint work, you make it look so easy.
    Eludia likes this.
  17. Eludia A Fixture

    Reference is definitely not one of my strong points but the cap badges on the bust indicate a member of the Light Company (the Bugle Horn) although I'm not entirely sure if this would be worn in addition to the Sphinx or instead of the Sphinx. Anyhoo, I digress, the Light Company would normally wear a green hackle I believe but after 1813, apparently, the 92nd Light Company wore a red hackle (the royal colour of Spain, perhaps a leftover/battle honour from the Peninsular War)

    Maybe someone with a bit more knowledge can jump in and clarify things.
    Scotty likes this.
  18. Eludia A Fixture

    Thanks for your kind comments Bob, what you don't see is all the swearing, teeth gnashing, brush throwing etc. that usually happens between photo sessions. I'm most definitely still a noob and have a lot to learn, maybe the photos hide that a little ;)
  19. Eludia A Fixture

    Hey again folks :)

    I have made a bit more progress and I'm pleased that he's starting to come together now (I have till next Tuesday to get him finished ready for my local club competition on Wed).

    I've tidied up the right shoulderboard a little and done the metals. I've also painted the leather water bottle strap, it has dried a little bit too flat so I'll probably up the contrast on it a little and then liven it up with a bit of satin varnish. I've also got the red base on his bonnet ready for the dicing (gulp).

    Some pics:

    Gordon Highlander-36.jpg Gordon Highlander-37.jpg Gordon Highlander-38.jpg Gordon Highlander-39.jpg Gordon Highlander-40.jpg Gordon Highlander-41.jpg

    Thanks again for tuning in (y)
    billyturnip and offo like this.
  20. Viking Bob PlanetFigure Supporter

    Apart from all the cussing, this is a very neat paint job, the leather strap looks good too.

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