Awful Green Stuff from Outer Space
I have a confession to make. I have never used green stuff. That’s right, I’ve been painting and assembling these miniatures on and off for twenty odd years and I have never done anything with green stuff – the two-part (blue+yellow) modelling putty which a majority of sculptors use to sculpt the minis I paint. Most modellers will make use of it to convert their miniatures or just fill small gaps in assembly. Yet to this day I have avoided it, partly out of laziness but mostly I expect due to an irrational fear of this unknown product.
It’s high time I got over this self-imposed obstacle and added some sculpting skills to my hobbying arsenal.
A perfect candidate project, I have decided, is the Rhino for a small tactical squad of Nurgle Death Guard Chaos Marines. I want the thing to look corroded and diseased, with pustules, slime, and other such grossness breaking out all over it. Seems perfect in that I probably can’t go too far wrong.
“It’s not a modelling flaw. No, it is the corruption of CHAOS!”
Now, because I’m new to the green stuff game I decided to read around a bit on the subject and then go through an instructional DVD to see how the pros do it. I’ve been very happy with the previous stuff I’ve seen by Miniature Mentor (I have the Laurent Esposito Mas, and Jen Haley painting videos), so thought I’d try the Secrets of the Brotherhood Anime Girl video by RAFM sculptor James Van Schaik.
The first painting one I got on DVD but, having setting up my Xbox 360 as a Media Centre, I’ve since used the online download option which has worked very well and painlessly. My Xbox won’t play the Quicktime files directly so I do have to do a video conversion which is a slight inconvenience but I do this for many media files anyway so it was no real trauma.
So far I have watched the first few parts of the sculpting one and I’ve learned tons. It’s too early to do a full review but so far so good.
I don’t know if these videos will be for everyone and they can be a little pricey. But personally I think they’re great. One thing I really wanted as I was getting into the hobby was to see how an expert would do something. And I mean really see – by looking over their shoulder and asking questions. This is something we don’t all have access to and have to muddle our way through trial-and-error, practise, and online tutorials. With these instructional videos you really are seeing, from the modellers eye-view, exactly what’s going on. How wet are the paints? How loaded is the brush? How do they apply it? Exactly how is that sculpting tool used? How much putty gets loaded on and how does it react when pressure is applied?
Many many questions which can only be answered so well by a written tutorial – and there are plenty of really good ones out there, don’t get me wrong.
So far I have only tried the Miniature Mentor videos but there are other companies out there who I should probably investigate. Anyone got any recommendations, I’m all ears.