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The following is a conversation between myself and LFX via private message on the Librarium Online. It is with regards to the article I did a while ago regarding sculpting for beginners (which can be found at http://www.librarium-online.com/foru...ing-minis.html if anyone is interested). It is probably about time I did some more work on sculpting, as my Dwarf Lord still isn't finished, and probably wont be for some time. I have, however, just started work on a Keeper of Secrets for a mighty empires campaign at my gaming group, and I have two weeks to get it done if I want to use it in my next game, so what better reason to begin documenting my sculpting work, and hopefully expand upon my beginners guide with a little more hands on practice. If possible I will try to get Video footage of me sculpting and add it onto the thread, although time will tell if this is possible. Photos, however, will be, and I will add addition photos daily to chronical my progress. First images will be up later this morning, so keep your eyes open. See the conversation below, it may be useful for those starting out in the sculpting field:
I wanted to know if you had the chance to expand on your :The novice guide to sculpting minis.
I really liked how it started and it had some very informative information (specially the anatomy bit which is simple clear and has alot what is needed).
Mainly armatures and other bits needed for modeling. Mainly i will be working (or trying to as i suck) to scratch model a couple of witch hunter models.
I'll try to document something more for you as I go on - at the moment I am working on 3 Flamers and the Blue Scribes from scratch, so will document them as much as I can for you. Nice to see it helped.
That would be great, WIP picture and all
I need to loot some ideas as i suck on my own
Also in general when you are sculpting are you keeping the human proportion and scale perfect with your creations? IIRC GW does not keep neither proportion nor scale correct.
Any other recommendation/tutorial/whatever you would recommend?
Well I am already part way through them, so I'll throw images up as and when I get chance, hopefully tonight. Proportion to me is more of a guideline than a rule. If the mini looks good, then it's proportions are okay. I generally make my character minis much bigger than my rank and file, to help them stand out. My space marine character particularly are downright huge, and my Dwarf Lord is actually just shy of human height, but his bulk clearly defines him as a typical fantasy Dwarf. Don't worry too much about proportion to begin with - you aren't a professional sculpter and you wont be for many years, so don't try to be. Just use each sculpting project as a way to practice one particular method of sculpting until you are comfortable doing it. Don't start with sculpting you own mini from scratch right away - work on giving a unit of knights a fur cloak for instance, then when you have fur and cloaks down pat, then try a different aspect. By far the hardest part of sculpting is definately hands, feet, and faces. So depending on your approach to the hobby you may wish to leave them for later, or dive right in and get some practice from the start.
As a chaos player sculpting is a LOT easier for me, as things don't HAVE to look anatomically correct or even look like their source material. A badly proportioned face could be passed off as a mutation on a chaos follower, and so long as it is painted to hint at this looks just as good as a stock plastic or metal miniature.
If it is okay with yourself I will post our PM's in the Hobby section for all to see, so other can offer insights too?
First off sorry for the late reply, things are being hectic and i get less and less time for fun stuff.
It is okay to post our PM (feel free to edit them so i dont look like a total n00bz).
Do you have a galery of all your work somewhere? As i am also interested in sculpting (but based more on DAS rather then Green Stuff) a chaos army/deamon to face off my Deamon hunter army.
No need to apologise, we all have lives outside of the hobby. I didn't have any time free to sort out those photos either. I would avoid DAS if I were you, if you plan on sculpting minis. I've only ever used it once and I do not like it at all. Still, if there are tutorials on using it then point me in their direction and I'll check them out.
I would suggest getting green stuff or Kneadatite from a hobby company, Maelstrom Games does Gail Force Nine green stuff in large tubes for under £10, which is a bargain. You probably get about 4 times the amount of a Games Workshop green stuff blister, and none is wasted as the resin and hardener are kept seperately. Oh, and Maelstrom deliver for free if it's over £10, so buy a couple of tubes at same time and you are set.
I don't have a gallery as such, but I do have a lot of threads all over the place on different forums. I'll update the librarium with as much of my stuff as I can, to help you as much as I can.
Thank you for the Maelstrom Games tip as the GS and milliput i have is about to finish and i am not ever buying from GW again anything (well that is not totaly true i drank the cool aid along time ago ).
As for DAS i do not have a tutorial per say but i use it for the following:
-Small/weird about 30mm D&D sculpting for non humanoid (flames/tentacles/whatever) butit might be better suited to use milliput but i like the DAS texture.
-Buildings/wrecks/craters (i might do a small tutorial about it) but just to say that you can make lovely craters and very realistic wrecked building for very cheap (cardboard required ).
-Other large scale sculpting.
As for your thread i find it very hard to search the librarium-online as i get alot of unrelated stuff. As for the other forum you should maybe have a thread with all the links to all your thread .
Kind regards LFX.
This is pretty much the extent of the conversation, but I hope to continue it here, along with any other comments/questions anyone else would like to make/ask.
---------- Post added at 00:47 ---------- Previous post was yesterday at 23:44 ----------
Well, here is tonights upload of images. First of all, the WIP armature for the Keeper:
The basic advice I can give here - and I think the above proves it works on large models as well as smaller, man sizes minis - is to create an armature for the basis of the model. There are numerous ways to do this, some as simple as buying one from a miniature manufacturer like Hasselfree, to soldering metal rods into the shape required, to an "A" frame - all of which have their own pro's and cons. The simplest and cheapest is the "A" frame, which was suggested to me by a fellow club member. I will see if I can get him to post images of some of his sculpted minis on here too.
All you do here is work out how tall the model needs to be from the base of its feet to the base of its neck (the head should be done seperately) and take a piece of brass rod, bend it into a rough "A" shape with the bottom of it bent again into the shape of the way you wish the legs to be positioned (in this case double jointed legs as it is a daemon I am making).
I have then used green stuff and wrapped it around the armature to create the basic shape of the torso - do not worry about getting the shape of the body correct at this stage - you are merely getting a basic shape ready as a stable platform to be worked on at a later time. In the image above I have worked on it for about 1 hour in total (along with other minis as well). I started it this morning to get the basic shape, then came back to it about 1 hour ago once the mornings work had had time to cure.
Normally you should leave green stuff 24 hours to cure, but on basic shapes like this at such an early stage it doesn't matter if you get finger prints or nail scratches on the mini.
This evening I have bulked the torso up a little more, still not going for correct anatomic details yet. That wont start for a few days yet. I plan on having the basic structure of the mini ready for detailing by about this time next week. Updates on the Keeper to follow.
As I mentioned in my conversation with LFX I have been working on bulking up my flamers of Tzeentch unit from 3 to 6 models, and considering we are in the middle of an economic crisis I thought I'd make my own. I have deliberately kept them at state where I can show you how they are made in stages. I thought I would add them in here as some of you may like to see how to make your own.
So, without further ado:
Sculpting Flamers of Tzeentch
Firstly mix up a large blob of green stuff, and roll it into a sausage about a centimeter thick. From here place you index finger on the centre of the sausage and roll it back and forth gently so that only the middle of the sausage gets thinner. You will notice that flamers are thin in the middle but fat at both the "head" and "tail" ends. This is how we make sure they look this way, and will help tie them in with the Games Workshop metals.
From here you shape the sausages into the rough pose you wish the flamer to have and then leave them to cure. Again, it doesn't matter about fingerprints etc at this stage as we are making a basic armature.
Once cured you should get some much thinner sausages of green stuff and - using the metal models as a guide - stick the sausages to the sides of the flamers "head" and "tail" ends stage by stage, smoothing them into the body of the flamer to create the various contours that the daemons have in their bodies. You will later sculpt mouths and other such orifaces onto these contours.
This is done in the second stage of the mini, and to do this you simply add a blob of green stuff to the end of each contour and smooth it in so it looks like an extension of that contour. Then take a sculpting tool and using the bladed end poke a hole into the fresh, wet green stuff. Work this with the tip of the tool to make small mouths, and with the rounded end to make huge, gaping maws. If the above doesn't make sense, see the images of Stages 1 and 2 below, and these will hopefully show what I am trying to explain:
Now I always try to give my own distinct style and flair to my sculpts, so I wont try to directly copy the GW mini. Instead of the flames along the spine of the flamers, I will add tentacles posed in such a way as give the impression of flames instead. To do this, I rolled many thin sausages of green stuff, rolling them for longer at one end to create a pointed tip to the tentacles. I then gently shaped the tentacles into whispy, wavey poses to represent flickering flames, and left them to cure.
Once cured, I cut the base (non-tip) end of the tentacle at an angle suitable to allow it to be glued onto the body of the flamer to give it that wavey look. Finally, two thick tentacles made in the same way as the other, but WITHOUT rolling one end to a tip are made, and glued on as "arms" to the flamer. At a later stage we will add one the trademark "mouth-hands" that flamers have, but for now this will surfice.
Images of the 3rd Stage can be seen below:
Updates to follow.
Here's the latest on the Keeper of Secrets, with the Masque for scale:
Keeping in mind the anatomy discussed in part one of the guide, begin to bulk out the armature - remember however that the armature must be slightly smaller than you intend the figure to be - you will need to add the shape of the body - the flesh, the muscles, tendons etc - yourself as the "final" layer - that is the point of the armature, after all. This will become clearer as we go.
I know it is early days yet, but if anyone has any questions or other comments, maybe even their own advice to put forward, please do.
Oh, and let me know if this is even any use to anyone - critique is just as good, if not better, than other comments. I'm a big boy, I can take it.
This is of great use to me because I would like to sculpt something nurgly soon! Thanks a lot.
The Great Plague meets The Devourer of The Galaxy. What does that make us?
Ooooh, Nurgle! My favourite sculpting subject! I love Nurgle - it's easy and it lets you go nuts.
In fact, to help you out I may find an old mini I am not using and Nurglify it - just for you. Let me know what you are trying to make and I'll try my hand at it too to help out.
I'll also root out some of my older Nurgle minis and stick photos up on here for you.
Well, I am making an army that looks like it is still being nurglified. So I am going to try and make a deamon prince that still has armour on it. Also, he can't be INCREDIBLY nurgly cause he would be a bit too much puss for my army. besides that I am game for anything. Wings are nice too. Thank you so much for this !
The Great Plague meets The Devourer of The Galaxy. What does that make us?
I'll be watching this closely. I am sculpting both large film concept figures as well as my own wargaming range at the moment and it's good to see how others go about it.
Good luck with the project. I'll see if i can help out along the way.