I have been having trouble moving on with my union miniatures and come to the conclusion that it wasn't just a problem with the evil dark blue, which no matter how hard I diluted it insisted on staining everything it touched equally. With this style of painting I am relying on the white undercoat to really provide the natural highlighting and it's not happening at the moment, can it be something obvious I'm missing? So far I haven't produced a figure that fully encompasses what I am after although many have shown promise here and there, but that has been with lighter shades and working with dark colours has reigned in my momentum.
Most of this fig (not a good photo) was painted exclusively with washes the trousers, blanket, hat and shoes for example, the rest required some base coating with a highlighting colour e.g. coat and leather pack. Although the figure looked somewhat incomplete before varnishing the effect overall was pleasing after getting his glossy coat.
Where has it fallen down with the union troops with their dark blue jackets, for help I went back the the very first figure I painted with white undercoat to try and achieve a "classic" shiny look. The first and most obvious thing I found is that I wasn't using the paynes grey wash over the primer before painting and secondly the primer was now spraying on slightly dry and giving a porous or rough finish. The first is easily fixed the second slightly harder as we are in the middle of a fairly hot summer and I live in a sub tropical climate with a healthy dose of humidity.
So here we have a starter where the paynes grey wash has been added back to the roster, also evident is the grainy looking effect of the primer/undercoat, it still persists even though I picked a cooler time to spray however the humidity is something I cannot avoid. I think this is working better with the dark colours.
Once again undercoat washed with paynes grey it works well with these lighters shades however so do washes of dark grey and browns (see the figure at the top of post, no underwashing with paynes grey).
I'll wrap these figures up soon with another montage of the progress as the washes go on and hopefully when they are all nice and shiny they will stand up to scrutiny.