I'm used to painting 25/28mm figs. Assembling them before painting is the 'accepted' method, but it's pretty much whatever you feel gives you the best results. Here's a few things I've learned after 14 years of painting minis:
A) I assemble first, leaving any parts that might hinder detailing on the sprue to be painted seperately, put on the model and then touched up.
B) When I begin painting I start with flesh areas, and then cover them with a liquid mask. It dries to a latex film that can be washed/peeled/picked off later. This prevents your carefully crafted flesh tones from taking any stray brush stokes.
C) I prefer acrylics. They're cheap, easy to maintain and clean-up with water. If you plan on doing a lot of wet-blending, use Model Color 'Slo-Dry'.
D) Your primer dictates your final color. For a dark overall, use a black primer. For more vibrant colors, use white. Got split personality issues? Go with grey, but keep in mind that it's a jack of all trades primer color, but des none spectacularly well.
E) It's better to apply two (or better still, three) thin coats than one thick coat. This applies to everything from primer, ink washes, basecoat, highlights or varnishes. You end up with better depth of color, and no brushstrokes visible in your paint.
F) Stay away from matte primers, try and stick to a satin finish primer. Mattes tend to obscure details quicker if you over spray the figure. An ounce of prevention...
G) Painting has a learning curve, and is a perishable skill. Keep trying, practice, experiment, push your boundries, don't get frustrated. And HAVE FUN with it.
- Tamiya thin brush on plastic glue.
- Any Vallejo paints (Model Color and Game Color are favorites of mine).
- Testors DullCoat (two coats of a gloss varnish, and one coat of DullCoat to finish and protect your minis. A glossy finish ruins any sense of scale)
- Citadel Color Flesh Wash (Fleshtones made easy. Just make sure you thin it down (Anywhere from 6:1 to 10:1 water to ink.)
- A glossy white or black ceramic tile (whichever primer color you use). Best palette on the market. It's cheap and dried paint scrapes right off. Toss some rubber feet on the bottom so the wife doesn't yell at you for scratching the furniture.
- Gesso black canvas primer, available at your local art supply store. (A recent addition to my arsenal.) It's a nice cheap, plentiful black brush on primer with a nice lustre to it, and it takes paint nicely (lots of tooth). Brushing on primer gives you a chance to do some recon, and get a sense of the details on the fire.
Wow. That was WAY longer than I had meant to go on for. Enjoy you mini paining experience.
"I'm no stranger to sarcasm, sir." Private Dexter Grif, Red Army, Red vs. Blue
Fortes Fortuna Adiuvat