I've been playing miniature games for several years now but have been painting miniatures for only the past three years. And I've been going extremely slowly at that! My biggest fear has been painting faces and eyes, especially eyes. Most miniature painters fear eyes for good reasons.
I attempted to paint eyes on the first figure I painted way back this month in 2008, my pirate below. The face is really basic and the eyes are creepy! Pretty good for a first attempt though. I still love this little figure. But those eyes! Shiver me timbers!
Fearing painting more creepy eyes, my next batch of figures had nothing but black dots or maybe brown slits. The eye sockets had no shading or anything. I painted all my Old Glory and West Wind 25mm Western figures like this in the summer of 2008, and I'm still working on some of those figures as I type! I also just realized that I have very few photos of my 30 Western figures on the blog--I have more painted but never shot them, so to speak. I'll try to rectify that. Still, the dot/slash style kind of works pretty good. Since the WW figures can have poorly sculpted eyes, it even helps some of the figures look better and meaner. I think this also works well on rank-and-file army figures.
Long Time No Paint
Since the summer of 2008, I have not painted a single 25mm face! (Looking at old posts, I realize I haven't done much period--but that is another story! One which I am rectifying!) When I got my Black Tree Design 28mm WWII Russians a few months ago, I wanted to do proper faces with proper eyes. I wanted to do proper shading and highlighting. I wanted to do proper 5 o'clock shadow and eyebrows. And so on. So I watched many painting videos and read many articles on painting faces. Painting is always a learning experience--part of the fun and frustration of the hobby.
The Russians Are Coming
This afternoon, I took some quick work-in-progress photos of my Russians. The photos aren't the best, but we'll fix that later. (This is also what happens when one goes to the eye doctor for an eye exam, gets his pupils dilated, and then tries to take photos of miniatures. Not one of my better ideas.)
The faces are not 100% complete. I need to work on the lips, eyebrows, and a few other details. But they give you an idea of what I've been doing and how I've progressed for the crazy-eyed pirate above. The photos still don't show the subtleties of the painting. (Dang, that sounds pompous!) You know the old saying: If you want to make your miniatures look horrible, take photos of them. Anyway, here they are. I can write some posts about how I painted them if folks are interested. These are only a few of the 40+ I have finished so far.