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I've never been that good at painting skin, and having just started a wood elves army I've been messing around with a few ideas but I'm not entirely happy with anything I've tried so far. In particular, I'm not sure what to use as a shading colour. Does anyone have any tried and tested methods or tips they'd be willing to share? Many thanks.
Depends how light you want it to be.
For my IG I started out with a base coat of tallarn flesh, then used flesh wash (I think gryphonne sapia is the equivalent), highlight with dwarf flesh and then the extreme surfaces (nose, cheeks, brows) use a mix of dwarf/elf flesh.
I suppose if I was painting Elves I would lean more heavily on the Elf flesh and perhaps add white to the mixture for extreme highlights.
snakebite leather, bronzed flesh, elf flesh, elf flesh + white, white...
That's my recipe, though for eye sockets I start out scorched brown if I want sunken eyes. I layer the paint on, to get a smooth transition, and the effects are ok, see my albums - my Dark Elves were painted with this, really thin coats, lots of minute transitions....
Well my opinion of woodelves is that they will have a more tan complexion than your fairer High Elves.
Reguardless, Reaper Miniatures paint line has different triads for skin, to include fair skin.
These come in Shadows, Flesh tones, and highlights. They also have Tanned skin, and Dark Skin.
I have recently panted a pale face.
My first try was awful, but this turned out ok I think.
I used 50% bronzed flesh and 50% terracotta (a valejo colour). It made the skin more pink and less yellow, then I put more white for the highlights. I used Scorched Brown for the darkest shading and a grey/blue as a glaze for the middle shade (sober grey a valejo colour).
If that is to pale I have this example as well
Here I used bronzed flesh as well, but I didn't mix any terracotta, only white. I added Scorched brown for the shade and used the same glaze as well. But I also used a glaze of terracotta on the chins to give it a little more life. I also used some more glaze, but that is not that important... I think it was cammo green in the shade as well
Bout of those models have a lost of work on the skin, but its possible to do it quicker and skip a few layers...
Keep the paint diluted and thin :)
(first rule in Zentradis book of painting)
Those look most excellent!