Full disclosure, this was meant as a critical look at the models I painted but the title will serve as clickbait as well.
I’m really happy with the look of my squad of Storm Lords, I picked up a Bronze in the Miniature Painting Open and they represent the largest and best example of my painting to date.
However, there are various things I could do better. So I’m going to list them all for your enjoyment.
Respect the Format
I need to have respected the way the models would have been presented in the competition they were entered into. The Miniature Painting Open is an online competition, judged not in person, but by a team of judges looking at pictures and viewed by people looking at a website. Unfortunately this meant squeezing a squad of 5 miniatures into a relatively small square box and presenting them for viewing. Here is a good example of two other winners in the Bronze category: Apologies as the website has been temporarily removed as of typing this so I cannot cite them correctly.
Both are painted excellently, however one looks much smaller due to the dimensions of the photo. I think a squad of 3 in a V shaped formation maybe using some scenery to increase the size of the models at the back would have been better (also 3 models are easier to paint than 5).
White (is a pain)
My white just blends into itself and needs more shadows to really pop, you can barely see the highlights on them.
Midtonesminis has an excellent example of white on his Instagram page, I’ll leave his thoughts on this below:
Corax white shaded down with blue horror, fenrisian Grey and Lastly thunderhawk blue for the deepest areas. Most of it is very soft shading and i glazed almost all of the shading. I started by mixing corax and blue horror in about 3-4 stages to create smooth transitions. The picture doesnt really show, but the flat areas of the armor actually has a lot more depth going on. But not too much 🙂 Lastly highlight up with pure Whites. I use skull white and Kimera white. Hope that helpshttps://www.instagram.com/p/CPycJ3IH1eb/
Green looks good against red, not pink
…I probably should have used it more often. Especially with the wax of the purity seals. On that note I should have added more details to the parchment.
Non Metallic Metallic are the forbidden door that must be opened
Non-metallic-metallics are an element I have shied away from for a long time, and to be fair, the squad I picked wasn’t going to allow many people to be wowed by the kind of effects shown below. However I’m going to need to cross that bridge eventually.
Push the contrast
I tried to put light spots on the helmets of the Storm Lords, however I probably should have gone further and added all manor of shading and lights on the shoulder pads and other areas. Andy Wardle’s Blood Angels are a great squad to reference for this as they have lighting and battle damage.
More interesting bases
My bases are fairly basic, just Polyfilla with rocks and scatter sprinkled on them and with some crystals and skulls added, I can pimp them up with all kinds of extra bits, i might even be able to do a decent paint job on them rather than just drybrushing.
There is plenty of space on the squad leader to jam in loads of extra freehand like the style shown below. But I just ran out of time and couldn’t justify squeezing in any more into them.
Banners look cool
You used to get loads of freehand banners in competitions, it used to really make certain models look extra good, however it seems that’s becoming more and more of a lost art. Strangely its never been easier to make a banner like the one shown below. Just take a can and apply some nice Forgeworld transfers and you are good to go.
Weathering, stains and micro scratches
I really need to practice micro scratches, they bring a really nice aspect to the Eavy Metal paintjobs.
As I said at the beginning, I’m still very happy with what I’ve achieved here and I’m hoping to build on these for further competitions. If there is anything I’ve missed feel free to drop be a line in the comments.