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Blog- Northall - PERSONALITY

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This is about figure painting.


If you like some appropriate background music to this entry open the link below :


For my new diorama Station Road I need some “top quality” painted figures. By top quality I mean the best I can achieve at this moment.

The first step was to read chapter 5 of Sheperd Paine’s book How to build diorama’s. After reading I made a small painting guide for myself as a reference during my paint job.


I used artist acrylic paints, different branches, which are diluted with an acrylic mat medium. I selected just a couple of colours for painting this figure.


Figure analyzing

Search for reference pictures.

Analyse where indirect shadows will fall on your figure, using a light about 30 cm above it, with the light striking the top of surface of the figure at an angel of about 60 degrees.

Rotate the figure. Make pictures from all four sides of your figure.

Analyse for the body shadows and for clothing folds and wrinkles.


If you know which side of the figure will be visible from the viewer’s side pay more attention to that side when you are painting your figure.


I made pictures of my figure, in this case the pretty girl from the Monty Range, for analyzing.



I made a painting handling device I saw somewhere on an American website.

That worked very well for me.



My painting sequence:




1. I choose a colour scheme. I want the colours to reflect the identity of the character.

2. I applied an undercoat, keeping the coat light so I didn't obscure any detail.




3. Then I painted the base coat for skin, clothing and hair.

4. Shade the details. Certain parts of your model would naturally look shaded and darker. I used a mix of three colours: a basic colour, a highlight colour and a shadow colour.

5. I added with a color pencil some color for highlighting some details.

6. I have to protect the miniature with a diluted matte varnish.

To see of the pretty girl will fit in my new diorama I placed her in Nice Street. I tried to give her some personality.

        In my new diorama she is looking in a shopping window.



I have learned again from this project. The most difficult part is the face and I’m not quit content with the result for this one. The great challenge here is not to overdo it.


And of course I have to finish Northall Dock, but my barber offered me a model book for the hair and skin colour to do this one.


Please your comments on this one.







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