Disclaimer: I am not a competition-quality painter. My skills are OK for table-top use, but I won’t be entering any contests any time soon and there are definite areas in which I need practice and improvement. Also, I apologize in advance for any wierd formatting issue that occur due to the number of images. I still haven’t got the hang of how WordPress deals with multiple images in a post, particularly if I want to have them side-by-side.
Some of the Reaper Bones miniatures require assembly. I wanted to see how easy this was, so I started with one of those. I chose a Fire Giant Warrior for this. He has only two parts, unlike Kaladrax the Reborn (though I am really eager to get to that dragon). You can see in the following picture this Fire Giant Warrior unassembled (you can click the picture to see the full size):
Since Bones are cast from a type of resin, I suspected a cyanoacrylate glue might be ideal. I hadn’t had luck using this type of glue on metal miniatures (in fact, I haven’t had decent luck with ANY glue on metal minis; I end up using a quick-set epoxy, but it’s wasteful and can be messy). I happened to have a bottle of Gorilla Super Glue sitting around, so I tried that. These are the results:
It looks like it worked! Bond time was not instant, but the pieces fit together tightly enough that it’s not an issue, and the piece has sufficient strength for tabletop play. Perfect! Now onto the paint job. According to Reaper, one can paint on Bones miniatures without priming them first. From what I’ve read, this really only works if your base coat is NOT diluted. This is a really large miniature so I’m going to prime it anyway, then base coat. I’ll wash the miniature first, of course, to get rid of any residual mold-release goo. Priming, as always, lets some of the details really pop.
Unfortunately, the primer I used, light grey Rustoleum Clean Metal Primer, is NOT suitable for Reaper Bones miniatures (works great on metal minis, though). It never really dried and remained tacky despite drying overnight in a dry, well-ventilated area with good air circulation. Fortunately, odorless paint thinner, such as my wife uses for oil painting, got most of it off and appears to have removed the last vestiges of anything tacky. I will attempt to paint the mini directly, then. I’m really glad I didn’t try the dragon first. Since the Fire Giant Warrior I selected is fairly large, I decided to not use my regular miniature painting paints for the base coat. I wasn’t worried about quality, rather, I was worried I wouldn’t have sufficient quantity. Fortunately, I had some DecoArt Americana Acrylic Paint handy. I used Lamp (Ebony) Black for the base coat. It went on great. When wet, it looked like it was going to obscure all the details. My fears were assuaged when it dried, however.
Next, I painted the flesh tones. I used a dark flesh tone. I was going to go with Terra Cotta, but it looked too red. I dry-brushed the chainmail and did a brown wash on the furs and a red wash on his hair (I want to give the appearance that his hair is fiery. This didn’t really work as well as I’d hoped. Perhaps my wash was not thin enough. Anyway, I pressed one, dry brushing with orange, then yellow. I also slapped some thinned gold paint on the various decorations and painted the armor, sword and other steel bits. I decided to make his helmet and girdle red. For some reason, the red paint acted like it was too thin, even though I did nothing to thin it out. I’ve noticed some of my Vallejo paints act like this. Maybe I didn’t shake the bottle enough (they tend to spend months not getting used).
To finish him off, I need to fill in the details. When I got all the leather painted, I did a wash with smokey ink. I also put a layer of a darker red on the helmet and girdle. It worked much better and didn’t look quite as much like a bright red light on top of his head. I always have trouble with faces and hair, especially if I try to add layers and depth to the hair, as I tried here (I wanted to give the idea that his hair was fire). It didn’t work out as well as I’d hoped, but at some point, I needed to just stop and call it done. So, it’s done.