I really enjoyed writing the Sasha Dubois painting diary posts (start here), they actually made the process of painting the figure more interesting. I thought I’d try stepping things up a notch, have a go at one of Hasslefree’s awesome sculpts (Eve), and write a few posts on doing that. In terms of anatomy, relative sizes and detail it’s probably the best miniature I’ve ever tried to paint. Usually things like belts or leg straps are 0.5mm or more in depth on miniatures, if you consider the scale (28mm being around 168cm) then a 0.5mm strap is about 3cm deep (I think), which is clearly unrealistic. However, we’re talking about ‘representative’ miniatures, so it’s never been an issue for me. Hasslefree sculpts are on the more realistic side of the barrier, so leg straps have a tiny depth (see image), barely any higher than the surrounding leg. Painting this figure is going to be a challenge.
To add to that challenge, there are some amazing paint jobs of Eve on the Hasslefree site, the people who paint those mini’s are real artists and their attention to detail, brush control and fine touch is beyond me. So I just hope I do the figure some kind of justice in my own way.
It’s in the bag!
Eve arrived this morning in her little plastic bag. She’s a three piece multi-part sculpt, two arms and the main body. As with the other Hasslefree miniatures there are virtually no mould lines on the figure, and no flash. The cuts where her arms were removed are really clean, and glueing them on with super-glue was trivial. Tiny bit of cleaning, and then a lot of holding, and they were in place. One thing I used to do when I painted as a kid was build little dioramas, put the miniatures on a base with trees and rocks and maybe other figures and tell a little story. They were more display pieces than anything else. For a long time since then I’ve been painting stuff and just sticking it back into the plastic slot base and putting it in a box. I wanted to do something different with Eve and stuff I paint in the future. I found some neat pre-moulded bases (in fact, there’s loads of different types of them from various companies). When I found them I wanted to put Sasha into one, but she was already painted by then and it’ll be no mean feat to get the metal slot off her feet without damaging the paint job. So this time, I took it off of Eve before I’d started painting.
Using a pair of snips I trimmed the strip on the outside of her feet, then using a saw I cut most of the middle section out. Lastly, I used some needle files and a craft knife to shape what was left into two pegs on the bottom of her shoes. Then I was able to drill two holes into the resin base, and stand her in it. I’ve popped some green stuff in there as well and shaped it a little bit and hopefully she’ll bind to that and stay in place. If not, once the green stuff is dry I’ll glue her into the holes which now match the pegs perfectly! I was pretty pleased with how that all went, it’s a long time since I’ve done that much work on a miniature (I used to do a lot more conversion / hacking). While I had the green stuff out I also filled a couple of spots on her arms where they joined the body. I think it’s filled enough but when it’s dry I’ll check and maybe add some more.
I really want to get this figure as tidy as possible before I start the paint job. With such a fine, small sculpt, any uneven surface is going to look like actual texture, so I need to make sure it’s right. In the photo (left) you can see the green stuff under her feet on the base, and on the lower side of her arm where it joins the body. I’m in two minds about filling the gap on the upper side of the arm, I think it may look ok as it is, but I’m still considering my options. I may undercoat it and see how it looks before I make any final decision.
Wish me luck.