I have often been asked about some of the techniques that I use in my painting so I thought I would add a small tutorial page for those interested.
NON METALLIC METHOD (NMM) -
Now before I start trying to run through my method for NMM, I have to point out that true NMM painters study light reflection etc....I don't!! I decided to try NMM a number of years ago as I like the affect and it makes me feel all arty as oposed to a simple toy soldier painter! Below is the method that I have stuck to as I find it very simple and still quite effective. In a nutshell if it sticks up or is an outer edge, this is where the highlights are built up. KEEP IT SIMPLE.
First, the paints I use :-
For yellow metal.....burnt sienna (any manufacturer really, I use Decoart), GW Snakebite Leather, Decoart Antique Gold and Inscribe Wheat. This latter paint is a slightly yellower version of GW Bleached Bone, which would suffice.
For white metal......Cotes D'arms Dark Grey, Slate Grey, Mid Grey and GW Space Wolves Grey.
Now for small flat areas such as the band on the shako, I start with a base of Snakebite Leather. Then from a central area and on the extreme edges I will use Antique Gold, feathering out but leaving quite a bit of the base coat still visible. Then the Wheat colour is then placed in the centre of the Antique Gold, again feathering outwards. At times a very small final highlight of white can be used if you think this will bring out the "shine".
For areas of more intricate detail such as the chains on shako and crossbelt, I use a base of a dark brown, for me Burnt Sienna, then the colours mentioned above. The higher edges on theses areas get the top highlight as can clearly be seen above
Note the gold effect on the barrel sash.....only the upper strands get the top highlight. On the cords of the sash and the braid on the pellise and dolman I work out towards the tips.
Here is an example of epaulettes and cords on some French dragoons, again starting with the darker base to bring out the detail. The bits that stick out/highest get the top highlight......simple really.
Now, for buttons, very simple. This time white metal but gold is just as simple using three colours only, these shades are in brackets.
Base colour of Dark Grey (Snakebite), lower edge on the rim as best you can in Slate Grey (Antique Gold), and then in a top quadrant of your choice(!) a tiny dot of Space Wolves Grey (Wheat). Very simple and yet very effective.
Now I do find large flat areas much harder to do, such as the cuirass on the general below. Using exactly the same colours as above but with some mixing of the various shades to get a more gradual blending together. I am changing my method for this style using watered down sepia ink for gold and black ink for silver, gradually increasing layers as I get deeper into shadow/shade areas. I am trying this on a base of the Antique Gold or Slate Grey. My efforts are best seen on the High Elf in the Fantas/Sci Fi gallery. Oh, incidently, the plate armour on the Elf has been painted in the same way as buttons. Notice how I have tried to keep the dot in the same place on each section.
And finally helmet chin scales. The darker base, then Antigue Gold/Slate Grey to pick out each individual scale and a final highlight on the leading edge.
I hope that this brief ramble helps you. Again, I stress that this is my own particular method which I find very simple and quick to do and is not "true" NMM. Life is too short to study light theory!!