So now we have a basecoat of yellow in place, we can start to see the task ahead. It's definitely yellow, but without edging or highlights, it's quite dull. You could certainly go "it'll do" for a challenge like this - but that isn't what I want.
Before we get into detail, I want to mark out areas to be check patterning. Couple of reasons for this. One, cleaning up any accidents with black will be a real problem when I have yellow highlights in place, so getting this stage out of the way now will help me. Any overpainting can be cleaned with the basecoat yellow, Scrofulous Brown, with very little effort.
It also lets me see the effect and check it doesn't overpower areas of the model.
With the test model done, it's time to hit the other models in the first wave of batch painting. Small panels on vehicles, heads of rockets on troops. I wasn't brave enough to try fancy swirling patterns on the rockets, but happy the check effect looks good.
There's a high chance I'll come back to the checks later and make the colours less stark. White and black really stand out on the models, so they will likely be overpainted with a cream and brown mix later, but leaving the pure white as a highlight and pure black as a shadow.
As part of my batch painting process, to avoid a sinking feeling when staring at a wall of unpainted models, I've grouped them into units. Painting one area of each unit at a time. It makes the process feel less monotonous, and across an army it means the colours will have a little natural variation between them
This is the near-finished yellow on the first squad. Simple highlights on key edges, brightest areas where the light would hit it, and a mix of the red and yellow for a mid-shadow colour. At the moment it's hard to discern if the effect works without other colours around it, so time to create a skintone.
Reapplied the red upper areas that were lost with the yellow airbrushing stage, then using Slimer Green and Livery Green, the skintones are added in. Really happy with the effect at this point. Character already coming through.
But how does it work as a mass of bodies? Pretty well! It looks like a unified army already, even with only the two main colours of interest in place. The red and purple tones on the unfinished areas look pretty good.
At this point, a little fatigue crept in. I've got the colours I like, and need to change from just doing wave sof green and yellow. So painted a few lenses to see if red/purple was a good colour combination ...
Sure, lenses are only a small detail but they add a lot of fun to the figures and help to break up the surfaces. Happy with how these tests turned out, so now we have a process that can be applied to the rest of the army. This is the original red and purple, then a little ivory in the highlights and dots.
An alternative check scheme in a low impact area to see if I like the effect more or less than the stark black and white. I like this version more, so now I have a plan for the future to update the checks.
Slowly getting the rhythm for painting groups of models. I feel this is tabletop level, quickly. Which is what I need for this many models.