The Dark Eldar are coming along. I've got a fire in me to finish the painting as fast as reasonably possible since I've got a bit of break from teaching as various clients take a week here or there for summer vacations. I've also got to clear the decks as much as I can before moving onto the new projects. I'll be going historical with my gaming thanks to Warlord Games. More on that in other posts as I break down my reasons and plans.
Here is the army as it stands so far with respect to painting. I've done the base coat for the Razorwing but it needs to go through a couple of layers of highlighting before it'll really pop out on the tabletop. The warriors are getting there with just the details and faces that need sorting out now. Those with keen eyes will notice the Dreadfleet auxiliary warships on the left. I needed a break from painting red and they are one of the few things left from the box I haven't painted. I'm quite keen to have a fully painted game of that soon.
So how do you paint quickly?
One of the common techniques that people learn early on and then sometimes drift away from is drybrushing. I'm sure that most of you have used this technique but if not, it involves wiping most of the paint off the brush (so it's nearly dry) and then flicking the brush lightly over the model so that only the protruding parts get the paint left on them. It's particularly useful for hair, fur and chainmail when it would be very tiring to put down all the lines individually.
I used drybrushing to build up the basic undertones on the Dark Eldar warrior armour before doing the edging work with regular brushwork. When it came time to do the vehicles I had a dilemma as I wasn't sure that drybrushing would work well over flat surfaces. The first venom I did a few shades of drybrushing and then finished off with careful brushwork and thinned paints to bring out the highlights. I quite liked the look at the end but it took a long time and I was worried about doing it on the Razorwing, just for the time involved.
The next venom I decided to do entirely with drybrushing to see if it worked out well and was a quicker way of doing things. It definitely was faster, but I had to work on the technique a bit. My suggestions for drybrushing vehicles are:
- Take your time with layers and don't be afraid to go over it again if it needs to be more even.
- Don't stop moving your brush. I found that the first few strokes left lines but that as I worked the brush over more and more, things evened out.
- Vary your angle of drybrushing so that you catch the lines you want to highlight. For example, I brushed down from the edge of the cockpit, from the leading edge of the wings backwards, generally along the hull and across the prow of the venom.
So the question is, which one do you prefer? One of these venoms has been done only with drybrushing, one with a mix of techniques. The drybrushing was faster. Which of these venoms looks best and which one do you think is the drybrushed one?
Once somebody has had a go at the answer in the comments I'll reveal the truth ;-)
PS: I think the Razorwing is getting drybrushed as the time savings are just enormous.