How To Paint Miniatures

How To Paint Miniatures: Step By Step Guide

So you have found out about a cool new board game and decided to purchase it with some amazing miniatures!

Aren’t the minis beautiful? They are impeccably detailed. But something feels missing. The minis are colorless and plain. If they would have had some color to them they would be perfect!

Having monochrome components to amazing miniature board games makes it incomplete. What you want are colorful components that are popping and adds more excitement to the games. With a bit of effort, you can paint your minis and make it look just the way you want.

In this article, we will take a look at how to paint miniatures. By following the steps mentioned, you can create an entire army of customized miniatures in no time!

Let’s get started.

How to Start Painting Miniatures

1. Planning The Color

The first step is to plan what colors you are going to use. It is essential that you have an image or an idea of how your miniature is going to look before you color them. You would want to color the miniature in a certain order.

Also, if you have a plan, you can check your paints and see if you have all the paints required for the task.

2. Prime The Miniatures

miniature painting

The next step is crucial. Before applying the paint, the figures need to be primed first. Take the miniatures to an area where you can spray the primer without making a mess. Cover the area with old newspapers if possible.

Primers need to be applied in a specific way. You simply can’t haphazardly spray the substance everywhere. Hold the primer and spray it from a distance. Make sure you coat the figure evenly. Applying the primer in the same spot for a long period will cause the substance to accumulate.

The best way to prime the figures is to apply multiple even coats. Oftentimes you will find that some areas are not well primed, such as the region under the arms. Make sure to spray in all the tricky spaces from multiple angles.  An even coat will allow the paint to stick properly.

3. Thinning The Paint

Thinning paints is extremely important. If not done right, it can affect the quality of the end product. Paint is diluted by mixing it with water. The added water will thin out the paint and make it runny and opaque.

To achieve this you have to add a little bit of water on the palate, add the paint and mix it using a brush. By applying a thinner paint on your miniatures, you will be able to preserve the finer details on the figure’s mold.

You need to add the perfect amount of water to your paint to achieve the desired consistency. By diluting the paint too much, it will turn out to be watery. The paint in this form will drop off from the coated area and seep into the regions where you might have already painted.

To achieve the best consistency, try experimenting to find the best water to paint ratio. In case the paint on your model appears thick, you can use a watery brush to thin it out. You can also use a napkin to soak some of the excess water or the paint.

4. Add The Background Colors

It is very important that you start painting the background layers of the miniature first. After that, you can slowly move on to color the foreground. This practice is widely followed when anything is painted. The practice works well when painting canvases, and miniatures as well.

 If your miniature consists of several different layers, it’s best that you first paint the lower layers. As for the top layers, they are much easier to coat. After the background colors are painted and dried, you can then proceed to add the smaller details.

There is no order to what regions you must paint first. If you paint the wrong regions early on, chances are that the miniature will get messy as you paint the adjacent areas. If it gets messy, you might have to re-paint certain areas.

5. Detailing

This is the fun part! Details add depth to your miniatures. This step is done after you have completed painting the base layer. When adding details to your miniature, you need to be very precise.

The more accurate you are with the finer details, the better the miniature will look when it is completed. When detailing, you have to use the smallest brush. Also, a steady hand will make this step a lot easier.

It is a great practice to first dip the paintbrush in water slightly just after you have dipped the brush into the paint. This will slim out the paint in the brush and prevent the formation of large paint blobs.

6. Shading

Once all the details have been added, the next step is to shade the figure. Shading is the final step of the painting process. This is done to add more dimension to the figure. Without shading, the figure will feel plain and bland. 

To shade your miniature, put a bit of black paint on your palette. After that, dilute the paint with a generous amount of water.

Dip your brush on the diluted paint and gently touch the area you want to shade. The watered-down paint will slowly seep into any tiny cracks which will eventually dry off. This will give your miniature a shaded look.

Final Words

Painting a miniature can be challenging, especially if you are a beginner and don’t exactly know how to paint miniatures. It takes a lot of patience to get it right. There is going to be some trial and error, but eventually, you will be able to nail it.

Try to use good quality paints and components. This will allow your miniature look more realistic, which will then enhance the feel when playing board games.

We hope that by following the guidelines, you will be able to paint your miniatures just the way you want it. Have fun on your miniature painting project!

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