Monday, 29 February 2016

Quick Tips: Bases, oft forgotten pieces of the puzzle

When painting miniatures we tend to spend so much attention on the figure itself that it's easy to overlook the base and give it minimal attention. It's an understandable mistake but one that is also easily overcome with a little bit of patience and thought on details.

An overhead view of the Knight Models Zombie Girl base

In a shout out to the latest season of the Walking Dead, the Knight Models Zombie Girl is a fine example of how some tender loving care to a base can give a figure that extra oomph! Straight out of the box, the base looks fairly unassuming with just a flat road and a pumpkin. But if you pay careful attention to it, you'll start to notice well sculpted details such as fallen autumn leaves, candy bars and wrappers as well as a well textured road and sidewalk. More than enough for any miniature painter to try and work his or her magic on. 

Knight Models Zombie Girl in its original packaging
Knight Models Zombie Girl: individual metal parts
Knight Models Zombie Girl: parts assembled/glued on and then primed

For inspiration, photos of candy bars and fallen autumn leaves (see below) were used as a benchmark reference on how to paint the details on the base. At first glance, the bright, cheery colours might seem to be out of place in a horror piece. But the juxtaposition of the Zombie Girl's pallid, rotting skin tone and the warm colours of a festive Halloween trick-or-treat celebration actually gives a surreal twist to the whole horror diorama.  

Inspiration for an autumn Halloween came in the form of candy bars and fallen maple leaves

To allow greater access to and control over the painting of the minute details, the base was painted separately from the figure i.e. before gluing the Zombie Girl to the base.

Knight Models Zombie Girl base sans pumpkin - sidewalk/road with autumn leaves and candy bars strewn all over
Scale comparison - Knight Models Zombie Girl base next to a 31-mm paperclip
A pumpkin's advice: Have a thick skin and smile

This is how the whole model kit looks when put together and with the paint job completed.

Knight Models Zombie Girl, paint job completed
Low level lighting adds to the eerie atmosphere of the piece
A well painted base adds volumes to the overall piece
Back view of the Knight Models Zombie Girl

The figure shown above has been assembled and painted exclusively for Shire Works. Please note that the Zombie Girl metal model kit is supplied unpainted and requires assembly. For more information on zombie-related models available from Shire Works, please click on the Knight Models product tab in the menu bar above, or on the ad below.