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So I read a WIP thread on Warseer recently, where the painter did a stunning good job on weathering his superheavy tank. Naturally, he used a couple of washes, first a "blackline" and then an "overall wear and tear" with brown.
What got my attention was his statement about what he used to wash. Like many others, he used an airbrush to basecoat acrylic, but to wash he used oil paints thinned down liberally with oil paint thinner.
He noted that many "professional" (read: everyone who builds and paints models outside of the tabletop gaming community) modelers perfer to do it this way, as opposed to us freaks- er, devotees of the gaming world who (myself included) often used thinned down ink or acrylic paint.
Is it true that oil-based washes would perform THAT much better? Anyone out there ever try this?
Yes, oils do perform far better. I weather down all of my model aircraft, Gundam dioramas, and display peices with oil paint. I'll have to get some pics once I get a digital camera.
However, oils are very expensive and flake-off far more easily than your model paints. For every day playing, they aren't going to last long without a good coating of varnish.
Oil is also notoriously difficult to work with. However, if you can get the hang of it, it really does pay off.
What I guess it gets down to is: are your Inks satisfactory? or do you really need to move on to oils?
I use Testor's model-paint (it doesn't chip) and cheap Acryllics for my models. The acryllics give them a more or less antiquated look or a grittier appearance with dry-brushing, which i find very appealing. However, they are easily chipped as well.
Oils also have a longer drying time so if you want to spend a lot of time reworking the paint after it has been applied oil will allow you to do this.
I have never had a problem with it chipping any more than other paints though i have found that as oil paints tend to be a bit more flexible the chipping from casual touching is lessened.
Obviously as you have to use thinners a bit of common sense is also required for health and safety reasons don't clean your brush on your tongue oil IS a toxic substance and so are most thinners - open a window keep away from your pregnant wife GF life partner etc.
I would not recommend using the for anything except a large project such as a land raider etc or perhaps a large 54mm mini that you wanted to got to town with. Having said that why not try it out and let us know the results we could all learn something!
Oh, yeah - Artist's Oil washes are incredibly useful, and nowhere more than on Vehicles. They're one of the most indispensable tools of a Tank or Aircraft modeller. Takes a bit of practice to fully realize just what you can really do with them, but once you get the hang of it, the results can be absolutely brilliant!
While they are rather expensive, it really must be mentioned that a little goes an incredibly
Looooooooooooooooooong way. A few medium sized tubes of your common wash colours (black, burnt and raw umber, maybe a litle blue and any others you might find a use for) will literally last you for DECADES. I've had my oils for probably 8 - 10 years now, and they're still 95% full. You're really aiming for a 90 - 95% thinner, 5 - 10% oil paint ratio when you're doing a wash.
They do tend to be better suited for display pieces than for gaming pieces (especially if you aren't too cautious with your stuff), but so long as you let them dry thoroughly (several days here, oils dry and cure slowly even when thinned) and put a good clearcoat on top, they should be fine.
Actually, Acrylic paints like we tend to use for Minis are great for oil washes, since the thinner in the wash won't attack a properly dried acrylic basecoat, while it'll eat into an enamel basecoat.