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  • #27430
    irishserb
    Participant

    I recently was reading a thread on another forum that talked about figure painting, and the posters generally agreed that figure painting was the most important part of the hobby, and that if you didn’t do your best possible job on each figure that there was maybe little or no point in painting anything.

    While I appreciate high quality painting, for me, the joy of the hobby lies in terrain making and scratch-building, not figure painting.  I often enjoy painting, but sometimes it is simply work.

    I have a strong art background, and a few years back, became curious as to what I could do with a figure, if I really tried.  I painted a handful of 28mm figures to a very high standard, and was quite pleased with the result.  But, each figure took between 45minutes and 2.5 hours.

    AT my peak (I’ve since sold some off), I had more than 17,000 figs.  If I never bought another fig at that point, at 45 minutes a fig, it would take nearly 13,000 hours to paint them all to a high standard.  Over the last few years, I am lucky to get an hour per week for hands on hobby time.  At that rate, it would take me 255 years to paint my figs.

    Now I realize that the hobby is different things to different people, and I don’t begrudge them for favoring different aspects of the hobby, than I might .  We should each do what feeds us.  My approach is that I have many hobby  interests, and I want to get them on the table.  So, I paint to a level that is acceptable to me, to get the game on the table.  Periods and projects can still take months to decades to complete to that point. And that is spending more like 5 (often) to 20 minutes (rarely) painting per fig.  The result is that my painting is very bland, and not that good compared to many gamers.  I am okay with that.

    But, I am curious.

    How many periods and figs does the typical miniatures gamer play and paint?  Do most have the approach that the figure painting is the most important thing, or the only thing?  How long does the average gamer take to paint a figure? How much hobby time does the average gamer get? And, how much of their hobby time is spent painting figs?

    I’d be interested in any shared thoughts on this.  And, I don’t mean this to be critical of gamers who feel that quality painting is an important part of the hobby.  After all, the hobby is different things to different people.  I am just amazed at the number of figs some guys turn out at a very high standard, and that they can do it in a single lifetime.

    Thoughts?

     

    #27432
    willz
    Participant

    Irishserb its horses for courses as far as I am concerned, figure painting for me is a joy and the best part of the hobby.  I think everyone should have a go at it, however I appreciate that some people feel they can not paint as well as others and thus they feel there is no point.  That saddens me a bit as I firmly believe there is no such thing as a badly painted figure, though if fellow enthusiasts feel that their painting efforts are not up to public display that also saddens me.  The best painted figure is the last one you have done.

    I am lucky I can normally can get in between 2 and 4 hours on my hobby daily, overall I would say it takes me longer to prepare a figure than actually paint it, about 45 minutes to an hour per 20mm – 28mm to paint.  Some of the 25mm 18th century figures I am currently painting I am working on the principle less is more.   When painting 20mm WWII vehicles / tanks dry brushing speeds up my painting no end, its all about understanding paint and the application onto the surface be it plastic, metal or wood.  If I am doing a large paint job 100 – 200 figures sometimes I can get them done in a week but this depends on the figure and if I spend 6 hours painting a day.

    If you are happy with the figure you paint you are happy in your hobby, do not let anyone tell you that your figures are not up to the required standard.  If anyone does that’s snobbery and just give them a dam good ignoring.

     

    #27433
    Norm S
    Participant

    I am interested in several periods.

    On an individual basis my painting is pretty rough – thank goodness for dips and washes!

    My aim is to get a figure onto the table, I like works of art, but make no attempt to produce them myself. Block paint, wash and highlight is good enough for me.

    Speed painting, with some care also thrown in, gets me to a practical level of production Vs play.

    #27435
    grizzlymc
    Participant

    Different people get different things out of the hobby.  For me the painting and terrain building is to wargaming what going down to the mall and inventing answers to the question “Does my arse look big in this” is to sex; an unfortunate and undesirable pre requisite.

     

    I HATE PAINTING!  I paint to a basic standard sufficient to identify the figure.  When 3d printing can make me 6mm pre coloured figures I will burn my paints and brushes with great gusto.

    I like wargaming.

    #27436
    Nick the Lemming
    Participant

    I’m with the bear on this one. I won’t play with unpainted figures, which means I have to paint them (though I don’t generally mind painting), but the whole point of painting them is to play with them, not paint them then put them in a box or on a shelf where they’ll look pretty but not get used.

    #27443
    Guy Farrish
    Participant

    Horribly eclectic -unfocused: take your pick.

    Therefore there isn’t time to paint all the figures I would need at even very basic standard to fight all the games I want to.

    I like painting but I’m never going to be able to afford all the figures I want let alone paint them all to high standard. So I have different approaches. Small scale battles in periods I know I am going to stick with I’ll try and paint fewer figures better. Big battles – smaller scale many more figs basic painting.

    Limited interest periods – own painted picture photo reduced and stuck on counters.

    One offs- coloured counters.

    Very big or last second games – plastic overlay on map and chinagraph pencils.

    Command games/Committee games/Crisis games – pens and paper no figs.

    Paddy Griffith ended up saying ‘down with toy soldiers’ because he thought they skewed too many aspects of the game/simulation, I wouldn’t go that far but it is very much picking the right tool for the job and if you don’t mind not having the best painted figs available; play anyway with whatever works for you.

    #27444
    McLaddie
    Participant

    I recently was reading a thread on another forum that talked about figure painting, and the posters generally agreed that figure painting was the most important part of the hobby, and that if you didn’t do your best possible job on each figure that there was maybe little or no point in painting anything.

    I’ve read  ‘the game’, ‘the history’, or ‘the folks you game with’ as being “the most important part of the hobby” on one thread or website. While I am sure each conclusion is true for any number of gamers, I am surprised when one gamer or another insists that a particular preference is universal or should be. I think there was a recent Wargaming Recon podcast about whether it was part of the hobby to play with unpainted figures… I kind of wonder why that should even be questioned. Why wouldn’t it be?  Most of us started out that way or with someone else’s painted or unpainted figures.

    I enjoy painting, but I can’t say it is the most important part of the hobby for me. The wargame is what it’s all about.

    #27445
    Not Connard Sage
    Participant

    I recently was reading a thread on another forum that talked about figure painting, and the posters generally agreed that figure painting was the most important part of the hobby, and that if you didn’t do your best possible job on each figure that there was maybe little or no point in painting anything.

     

    Not for me it’s not. I bloody hate painting, always have.

     

    If I wasn’t such a tight bastard I’d pay someone else to do it.

     

    …and what Grizz said.

    "I go online sometimes, but everyone's spelling is really bad. It's... depressing."

    #27447
    willz
    Participant

    When 3d printing can make me 6mm pre coloured figures I will burn my paints and brushes with great gusto. I like wargaming.

    I am with you there Grizzlymc, though I enjoy painting figures, I think within 10 years we will have 3d printed painted or unpainted wargame figures.   Roll on that day I’ll be in my sixties and will be buying pre-painted 3d painted armies 20-28mm we live and dream.

    #27448
    Mr. Average
    Participant

    I’d say that the most important aspect of the hobby of playing games is the playing of games.  But that’s me.

    I like painting, and I think I do it well enough, though it carries a large barrier in my mind whenever I try to get started.  It always feels like “Oh, GOD, this’ll be a mess, it’ll take forever, I don’t have the time or energy, I’ll just screw it up.”  But if I can get past that initial mental hurdle, I enjoy it.

    On the other hand, I play almost exclusively science fiction games, from postmodern through my new “3mm Not-40K” set.  So, given that I make up most of my own background it’s hard to screw it up, because who’s to say that the Sulaco National Guard DOESN’T wear red uniforms?

    #27454
    grizzlymc
    Participant

    Actually Mr Harley, Shapeways colour plastic could probably do a passable 28mm.  Weapons might not make it as what they call a “wire” must be 1mm thick.

    #27455
    willz
    Participant

    Actually Mr Harley, Shapeways colour plastic could probably do a passable 28mm. Weapons might not make it as what they call a “wire” must be 1mm thick.

    I think I have seen “Shapeways” 3d figures and thought they looked a bit flimsy.

    #27467
    grizzlymc
    Participant

    Was that the old gypsum or the new plastic.  The new colour plastic is apparently the same material people use for 1;144 planes etc.  I would say that it is less brittle than hard plastic and much less bendy than airfix type soft plastic.  The big deal is that you can make your figs in colour.  I am mulling in my skull making my guerra del Pacifico armies with 6mm figs on a sprue with the weapons raised detail rather than pokey outey.  They won’t be as good as baccus, but I won’t have to paint ’em.

     

    If I was doing 28s, I’d buy 3rd party weapons and just print the figs.

    #27468
    Blackhat
    Participant

    I’ve always enjoyed painting – I find it relaxing. Nowadays I’ve switched to painting in block shades and then using Supershader or washes over the figure to finish it – or painting Toy Soldier style with gloss varnish. That speeds up the production, but I am even painting a few figures for some otehrs at the club as well (for money, of course!).

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    #27472
    Altius
    Participant

    I enjoy games very much, but I’m definitely more interested in painting than playing. It does take me a long time to finish an army, but when I do, it’s a complete army and I like the way it looks on the table. Same goes for terrain. I really enjoy creating terrain features and making them look as pretty as I’m able to.

    I used to try to have something in every period and every scale, but I just ended up with a lot of half finished armies. I made a decision to limit myself to certain periods or conflicts. That’s been a lot more satisfying

    Where there is fire, we will carry gasoline

    #27508
    Whirlwind
    Participant

    I like the look of painted soldiers more than unpainted soldiers, but a quick and rough job is fine for me.  How to put this…?

    There is a big difference in enjoyment for me between a game with painted figures and unpainted figures.  There isn’t a very big difference in enjoyment between a game with painted figures and a game with very well painted figures.

     

    https://hereticalgaming.blogspot.co.uk/

    #27510
    Don Glewwe
    Participant

    My (mostly worthless) opinion:

    In addition to personal pleasure of the task (for which there is no rebuttal) there is the question of ‘what are you modelling?’.

    If it’s individual soldiers, then the painting should be at a high level.

    If it’s the battle, then the 3-foot rule applies.

     

    Are you modeling the battle, or the elements/soldiers?  Put another way: Is the game just an excuse to display the models of the soldiers?

    Of course both can be done/accomplished – the individual is the one who decides if the goal(s) have been reached.

    https://brawlfactory.net/

    #27536
    paintpig
    Participant

    I was listening to a psychiatrist discussing adult colouring-in books this week and the meditation like benefits of relaxing your brain and giving the real world a miss for a few hours, it occurred that painting my toys, for me at least, plays a very similar role. So yes I enjoy painting, I’m pretty slow but getting the job done in a certain time doesn’t factor in for the most part. I do remember well when It was more of a chore, getting three battalions done for the next game in a week sort of thing. Nowadays I just cant be bothered with that nonsense, if I “need” to get figures painted I opt for a time friendly shading technique, still paint the same relaxed speed but I get a few more figures out. Getting back to the OP I completely disagree that painting is the most important part of the hobby, as mentioned above gaming is the most important part of …..gaming, although as I have hinted I find painting probably comes close to the most relaxing “me time” part of our hobby.

    I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel
    Slowly Over A Low Flame

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