Back in the late 80's/early 90's I used miniatures while playing AD&D and a 'mech game. I painted somewhere around a total of 50 miniatures to use in those games. Very low quality by today's standards (perhaps even by that day's standards ;) ), I really just wanted to have miniatures for gaming, and was not very concerned about high-quality. Then my priorities were elsewhere and I was simply too busy to keep either one of those hobbies.
I tried to take-up miniature painting again in 2002 as an end to itself, and got as far as painting four of them that year. They were better than what I did ~10 years before, but again I was too busy. In 2006 I started again. I bought some bases from the Wyrd store and the owner emailed me about the Wyrd competition at that time, so I got one miniature done and entered the competition. I won a random prize and have been sneaking-in painting time here-and-there since then. I use competitions (almost entirely the Wyrd ones) as the motivation that I need to keep at painting.
This is a gallery of miniatures that I completed in 2006. These are the miniatures that I painted after my very long break from painting (aside from the few I did in 2002). This is the year that I started painting miniatures more seriously, doing my first layering, NMM, OSL, darklining, freehand, etc.
I thought that it was time for new paints (after all, I hadn't bought paint in around 15 years!), and I chose to go with the Reaper Master Series paints almost exclusively. I liked the dropper bottles and the triad concept sounded good to me, as I was looking for help in choosing colors to shade and highlight with.
I started this year using nylon brushes, and tried Raphaël Kolinsky Red Sable, Winsor and Newton Series 7 (Miniature and normal), and Da Vinci Maestro brushes. I ended the year using the Da Vinci Maestro brushes, but I would like to try the Winsor and Newton Series 7 again.
I also started the year thinning with "Magic Wash," but quickly switched to using "gunk." I think that I need to refine the mix of my gunk yet.
I changed my "gunk" formula at the beginning of the year, which I think helped a little. I did not get back to trying the Winsor and Newton Series 7 this year, maybe next.
I had a little back-log of miniatures (some from 2006 and some from many years ago). This year, I tried to either finish them or remove the paint from them. That went well, as there are only two miniatures left in a partially painted state, and I hope to finish them in early 2008.
I briefly experimented with using a wet-pallet, wet-blending, and using different colors for shading this year. I hope to further investigate those next year.
I switched almost entirely to thinning my paints with water this year. I also started to thin my paints more than I previously did, and apply more layers. Did it help? I'm not sure. :)
I didn't get to enter as many competitions as I would have liked this year, but I did win "Best of Show" and first place in the "Best Single" category at Conneticon 2008 with my Æsa of the North (and third place in the "Best Single" category with my Viktoria, Bounty Hunter (Alternative Version)).
I lost a little ground with the partially painted miniatures this year. I have three now (the same two from last year and another one from this year). My Da Vinci Maestro brushes are still working, maybe next year I will try the Winsor and Newton's :).
I continued some small experimenting with using a wet-pallet, wet-blending, and using different colors for shading. Again, I hope to further investigate those next year. I added a few P3 paints to my collection of paints. They have a few colors that I was missing, and I prefer their white and black paint.
Again, I didn't get to enter as many competitions as I would have liked this year, but I did win first place at Conneticon 2009 (no separate categories this year) with my Aaron the Conjuror [Casting Darkness] (and honorable mention with my The Hunt [Taelor - Lady Hammerstrike and Rasputina and The Ice Witch's pet]).
I did get get to enter a few rounds of Iron Painter at the end of the year. Multiple miniatures per entry, for the first time.
This section lists some websites that I find useful.