About an Ox... and a Princess...

(Surely there’s a bad joke in here somewhere)
Editor’s Note: An Ox and a Princess walk into a bar...

Right, time to take you through another “step by step”, this time of the Chibi versions of Ox & Princess from Steamforged Games’ Guild Ball. These were limited editions for last years Gencon top of my head, alongside Chibi versions of Shark & Salt (which I’ll probably/hopefully/maybe paint up some time as well)

Looooong boring intro done, let’s do some pics, or well 1 pic. In case you didn’t read Fair Do’s #2 (can’t say I blame you :P E/N: I do, GO READ IT!), you missed out on the “look at this partially primed/painted fully build mess” before pic.
At least this time around 1 thing is “untouched”.

So with 2 week left til SMC, I decided I was gonna be entering these 2, because 1) I like painting red 2) look at that puppy 3) they’d been moved around my desk for months now and I was starting to feel guilty for not slapping some paint on them.

With most of the base coat already done I decided to focus on the skin first. I absolutely hate painting skin (the main reason you won’t soon see me paint half naked ladies), the colour doesn’t even matter. Even colours I can pull off on anything else I’ll mess up if it’s meant to be skin.

On the left you can see some early colour blocking to get a bit of an idea of where I wanted to go with his facial expression: was aiming for a bit battleworn, stern and ready to kick ass (and possibly chew gum). Also done a bit on the eyes as I tend to find it easier to do that at the same time. On the right, the more highlighted version, with the eyes mostly done and some added frowns/wrinkles. Decided to leave the face for now and focus on the surrounding areas (hair & beard). As I find that helps with pulling the whole thing together thus making it easier to see what needs improving.

Since this fella seems to be wearing quite a bit of leather armour already I decided to go for a more grey look for his hair, rather than brown. Could’ve gone for using blue as well, but since I wanted him to look battle worn and grumpy I decided grey was the way to go.

At this point I realised it was like I was painting a Chibi version of FTT member Dodge (who claims to be less grey *hahaha*, and actually has blue eyes - but artistic liberties, right?), which lead to me deciding I would paint the dog to look like his cat Ragnar (which I ended up failing miserably, more on that later).

Next up: the axe, instead of going with the easier TMM (True Metallic Metal) method, I decided to go for NMM (Non Metallic Metal E/N: yeah, it’s a thing…), a technique I’ve been trying to learn for a little while now. Probably shouldn’t have done that given my limited time, but, eh, I like to make stuff a lot more complicated for myself if I can.

This was also the point where I contemplated chucking the lil guy in the bin as well as snapping my brushes and more of such overly dramatic things (E/N: Now where have I heard that one before…? F/N: There’s a pattern here :p). Naturally I didn’t do this, but I did end up not looking at the lil guy for about 2 days >insert more stress...<

I could do a very long and boring walkthrough on how I did the leather bits now. But 1) I can’t exactly remember what I did 2) it’s basically just start with darkest brown colour then add a lighter brown to it do that about 50 times and finish it of with a white/off-white added to it.
Instead let’s focus on how I made things even harder on myself by deciding I wanted to freehand a tattoo on his arm, because that’s totally cool and stuff (not to mention I only had about 2 days left at this point).

I kinda ended up doing this backwards as I was too apprehensive to brush it on, so instead of sort of glazing it on I opted for the “draw it on with marker and then paint over it”, hopefully making it light enough in the process to make it look like an older tattoo rather than a “I got drunk last night and woke up with this” tattoo.

1.5 days left and I still had his little doggo to do. Which I rather spontaneously decided I would paint up as my friends Dodge & Curlette’s cat Ragnar.

I learned 2 things 1) cat markings do not work well on dogs 2) lots of black doesn’t actually work too well either. Plus it really didn’t look great aesthetically. So I bathed the pupper in some dettol and tried again.
E/N: No actual puppers were harmed in the painting of these miniatures. Fuck off, PETA, you context-allergic hacks!

I tried for a menacing look, but ended up with a pretty adorable, extremely crosseyed pupper. And pics off all FTT members trying to imitate his look. Great blackmail material, thanks, guys! :-*
E/N: Look up legal avenues against residents of the Netherlands for potentially pernicious picture posting...

Kudos to you if you managed to stay interested and read the whole thing til now. Have some (deliciously out of focus) pics of the finished piece :)
E/N: Buy Fair a stabiliser...

About the author:

Amber is that funny friend of few words everybody likes. When asked about penning a small bio, she had this to say: “I’m not a complete idiot, some parts are missing. That’s it. I suck at bios.” What she lacks in the “about” pane she more than makes up in humour, cats, painting prowess, and in being a kickass, loving mom.