Saturday, 19 April 2014

Stuff I Use & Like...

Something different for this post - part ramble about materials/ part review.

I have to confess, I like paint, I have this thing for wanting to buy more paint, even though I may already have a colour that's very similar from another range, or I could mix it up. I like to try paint from different manufacturers/brands, as not all paints are made equal - some are more equal than others ;-) I also have a thing for nice brushes, but I'll tell you about that another day.
I work exclusively with acrylic paints, I used to use enamels as a lad with all that smelly turps to clean up with - I much prefer water for cleaning brushes and thinning paint.

I find that some brands of paint behave differently than others - I guess this is due to a number of factors like density of pigment, proportion of medium to pigment, stuff like that. Ever had a colour that took multiple coats to get adequate coverage? Some companies actually design their paints to go on in thin applications, as it suits the painting style that they promote - like Reaper paints, although they now have a whole set of high density paints that I have yet to try. For some of us we like a tried and true method which involves blocking in nice solid colour over a black undercoat, and layer in highlights - others, like me, like to mess about with a combination of techniques. One of the things I have taken to is using washes, not the dip and you're done approach like Army Painter, but the application of coloured washes to a base coat with a brush, which are then usually over-painted. I have discussed this before in an older post about some of my painting techniques, so I'll try not to repeat myself too much.
One brand of washes that I find myself frequently using, are those from Secret Weapon. I also use Vallejo, and inks from P3, old Citadel, and Derivan.
The Secret Weapon washes go on really nicely I find. They tend to dry with a sheen, compared with the Vallejo washes which dry rather matt. I guess in that regard they are similar to inks. This is not a problem for me as I usually apply a coat of Dullcoat or other varnish, and over-paint a lot, leaving the wash only in areas where I want it.

Two of my favourite online sources for paints, washes, brushes and other stuff are Tabletop Empires and Slave To Painting. I recommend these businesses - never had any problems with them, great service and quick turnaround.

I have tried a new brand of paint this year - Lifecolor. I picked some up on a visit to McCann's Model World in Hobart after having a chat with the friendly staff about what they thought of it.
I must say I am very impressed with this paint. The paint itself is quite thin, but dense as far as pigment - at least that's how I found the two pots I purchased. They have an excellent range of colours and some very useful boxed sets - some great stuff in the range for the WW2 painter. I just wish they would bring out a boxed set for British Late War vehicles and equipment, they seem to have most of the other nations covered. I haven't purchased these online as yet, and the companies I mentioned above do not stock this brand - perhaps someone can recommend me a good online supplier?  This site has more information about colours, sets etc., if you're interested: here.

Well that's all for now, might have a ramble another time about other paints, or some brushes that I have been using recently that I am rather pleased with.


  1. Great post mate - ramble on! Good to hear about some unfamiliar paints.

    1. Cheers Dux, I'm glad to hear it was appreciated.
      I could do with a bit more rambling about such topics, as I know that I often enjoy reading other people's posts about hobby related products.

  2. Concerning the paint buying addiction I'm absolutely with you. My favourite range is Vallejo Model Colours and I catch myself buying colours I already have from another range just because I sense VMC better for me.
    As washes I'm trying Armypainter's dipper bottle version and until now I've been pretty satisfied. But many thanks for the hint with Secret Weapon. My favourite dealer has them in stock as well...

    Cheers and happy Easter

    1. Yes, the lure of the paint....
      I have lots of Vallejo too, and generally find them very good.
      I am a big fan of triads- either making up my own, or buying ready made triads like the Reaper Master Series paints. The only paints I avoid on price alone are the new Citadel paints - I think there are so many better value for money alternatives out there.
      I hope you enjoy the Secret Weapon washes.

      All the best,


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