So once I've chosen which of these models to buy (I now only buy models that have character and that I want to paint, otherwise it has to be converted) I start the painting process and it hit home as I was about to paint this dwarf adventurer, that I was having an unusually long internal chat with myself (perhaps even with the model) to find out who he is and how that will determine my painting approach. Here he is with some base coats on, the decisions behind each is outlined below:
Now this fella is to be the hero of my tale as I narrate and build a dwarf warband around him. I needed to make decisions about how to paint him and this depended on such questions as to whether, for example, he is young or old, wealthy or poor. In more depth, his age determines the colour of his beard, his wealth determines the condition of his weapons, armour and attire, his wealth is determined by his success as an adventurer etc, etc.
So I decided he was to be old, poor and not very well equipped (more on the backstory when he's finished). I then gathered a few images to help me paint in these realistically and tried to colour match them with the paints I would use to recreate them:
Balor brown and Dawnstone
Mournfang brown and baneblade brown (lighter areas with Balor brown or dry pigment)
Doombull brown and black. Scratches with Balor brown.
Baneblade Brown and Dawnstone
So with the model now nearly finished, the decisions I made in my colour palette and the choices I made in his appearance have helped me make my own unique miniature, especially when I write about his backstory in my next post. I see these two elements of the hobby as intrinsically linked and (in my book) there should be no random approach to painting or collecting miniatures! Choose a characterful model (or convert one) and create your own character out of that characterful model!