Saturday, 22 August 2015

Swamp Thing: Experiments in Dipping (part 1)

Do you remember the whole "dipping" craze that was going around a few years back? Before washes became popular (and GW produced those nice shade paints), dipping with products used for gardening (and the more expensive Army Painter rebrand) were favoured by some hobbyists for instant results.

This isn't a technique that I have used very much, but it is something that I keep returning to. It's just a method that I've never really gotten decent results from, despite picking up the Army Painter Quickshade soft and strong dips. I can never seem to get the balance right; the shade pools, or doesn't provide enough definition, or comes out too shiny even after varnishing... The list goes on. And yet I see people producing good results with this technique online, and it seems a very fast way to paint up large models or regiments of figures.

I decided to try again on a recent Swamp Thing model that I picked up. He seemed an ideal candidate for this technique...

He was painted in bright GW basecoats, and then Army Painter Strong Tone was brushed onto the model. This is a dark colour, but not too dark. I've found that it's important to use very bright, vibrant colours with the dip, as it darkens everything. Basically go a shade lighter than you usually would, and expect everything to turn out far more muted after the process...

... this is the result.

See what I mean about lack of definition? Swamp Thing, like most Knight Models figures, has a lot of muscle tone and really nice sculpted detail. This is not defined by the dip. Maybe I should've gone lighter still?

Not entirely sold on it! So, I decided to add another layer of painting to the figure, but adding some highlights and additional shading to the miniature. I'll add this: you can paint over Quickshade, but you'll need a matte varnish to seal the figure (he came out very shiny after dipping). This I need, and opened the paints again...

Check back tomorrow for part 2 of the dipping odyssey!

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