Friday, June 22, 2018

Which Color Paint is your Go-To?

Hey Everyone!  Today I wanted to chat a bit about paint, color choice, and what you find yourself using more so than not.  I don't plan to discuss brands of paint as much as what colors you feel are comfortable to paint with and what you always seem to grab when painting a model or an army.  If you are looking to dive more into types of paint and how brands might differ there is a lot of resources already out there such as Vince Venturella's channel over on YouTube which you should definitely subscribe to if you are not already.  I find it very interesting how color preference can shift subconsciously over time or be a hard choice and my own history of color preference is full of both.

When I first began painting I had a fondness for shades of blue, specifically Caledor Blue (or other similar blues) as I began my time in Warhammer painting my High Elves.  I was really inspired by the box art as the blue was bold and felt like it represented the regalness of the High Elves well.  Blue was everywhere after I got comfortable with painting the color and it all stemmed from seeing the wonderful artwork on the High Elf boxes.  Painting blue I needed a suitable color to match with it and I am not sure why, but I went with a lighter shade of purple.  The odd thing was I found my color preference shift as more and more Aelves began having more purple than blue on them over time.

Without realizing my go-to color became purple and it would remain that way for a few years.  I loved the way it covered and popped on my models at the time and I found myself using it across all three of my elf armies allowing them to blend together with a unifying color that began as a small part of my original scheme.  As my purple phase was going strong I made a choice to paint without it and before I knew it I was fully invested in red shades.  I had multiple armies with red as the primary color and I am still going strong with putting the color on every model I can get my hands on.

I really feel in love with red due to how it covers so easily.  It is a joy to paint with and being a bold color really helps my models stand out.  You might find your go-to color is based on how it flows, looks, mixes, or a plethora of other reasons.  A good friend of my Sean (Brushforhire) has a love for cool colors and is often painting in cooler tones that work well with his style.

You may not even realize you have a preferred or go-to color until you sit back and look at your recent projects. If you look back across all your work you may see trends develop as your Go-To color shade changes over time.  It is possible your Go-To color could be entirely determined by the army you play as well.  My Dark Angels are a perfect example of this as are my Sylvaneth.  The armies are, typically, one primary color with a bit of variation to dabble with within the model details.  Not that you can't go your own style entirely, but often you see these armies as their typical green and brown shades.  While neither of these is my Go-To color they provide a nice distraction and a chance to learn how other colors work, but it is entirely possible if you play an army with a certain color it will become a color you tend to use more and more in other projects.

The benefit of finding your Go-To color is learning how to better use the color and feeling comfortable with it on any model.  The downside of a preferred color, however, is you might be limiting yourself more than you realize.  When I painted my Khorne army I wanted a touch of red as it is my Go-To color, but I really wanted to get comfortable with painting white so I opted to make the primary color white.  It was uncomfortable and a few times I thought about just going all red, but I pushed on and now feel very comfortable with white paint.  If I simply stuck with my comfortable and preferred colors I wouldn't have improved so be careful of falling into this trap.

So I am curious what is your Go-To color?  Mine is currently Mephiston Red, but lately, I have been using Incubi Darkness more and more so perhaps mine is shifting again.  You may be surprised to find you tend toward a certain paint model or shade.  It is entirely possible that you have no preference, but I bet more so than not you will find yourself with a preference.  The color might change or blend into another over time or you might consciously decide to shift from one to another for a specific purpose.  No matter what shade you use it is good to experiment and put yourself outside your comfort zone so you don't fall into a repetitive loop and discover you have three red armies and are considering a fourth (looking at myself on this one).  Although, getting practice with a certain color and shade as you work toward improving your skill will only benefit you in the long run so don't force yourself away without a good reason.  Let me know in the comments what color you always grab when you paint a model and until next week, Happy Hobbying!

Chuck Moore