Dark skin is too hard to paint

While I have been painting my Malifaux crew, I’ve been painting them to match how they look in the images on the cards or art.
Now, Marcus (head of the crew) is quite dark skinned – which I have never attempted before but figured, oh you know if lighter toned skin wasn’t too bad this should be similar.

It was actually awful. I’m currently in two minds between stripping him and making him lighter skinned or leaving him as he is and not being entirely happy with him.

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What do you mean I’m ugly? I have lovely white eyebrows.

I don’t know, maybe when his clothes are done I can touch it up/fix it some how. Uuuugh, this miniatures painting business is so stressful – WHO KNEW.

Oh! Good news however, I got these little cuties in the mail today!

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They are so little you have no idea. Like, less than a CM for the Tiny Kittens and Jackalope is barely over a CM big. I’m worried I’m going to damage his little antlers trying to put them on! (Both of these, also by Wyrd for the Arcanists of Malifaux)

Aaaannnd, my very generous Painting Sage gave me 2 boxes of paints. Most of them are half used, but plenty enough for a newbie like me to keep me busy for a while to come.
So excited to have more than a few colours to try to practice painting at home!

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Well my lovelies,
time for sleep.



8 thoughts on “Dark skin is too hard to paint

  1. I think marcus looks fine, the harsh highlights really pick out his features. if they were softer i think it would look a bit lost. i might be tempted to take his colthes up a shade so hes not so dark.

    • Thankyou! I appreciate the encouragement. Yea, I’ve decided not to touch his skin again until the clothes are finished and fixed up, and then re-visit whether I like the skin or not!

      Wish it had of been a simple matter of buying the paint ‘dark skin tone’ and ‘dark flesh wash’ or something hehehe.

      • Would make life a lot easier! Intend to use a chocolate brown todo dark skin getting the washes and highlights rights is a pain!

        But sometimes it’s hard to tell of something’s worked until its all done!

      • This is very true. Yea I think it was the highlights that were really killing me here. Don’t get me wrong I don’t find light skin easy either but every highlight on darker skin was really noticeable!! Eeep!

      • I use a chocolate brown and work up from there, its a pain however you do it!

        i find if im not happy with something i always leave it until the models finished that way i can see if its just me!!!

  2. I think he looks alright, but leave the model aside for a day or two and come back to him with ‘fresh eyes’ – it might look OK or you might have some ideas to change the look. You can always go over the highlights with a slightly darker drybrush to tone the highlights down a bit. Of course when he’s got more paint on him you’ll have a much better idea of how he’s going to look as a finished piece. With more highlights on the clothes and hair the highlights on the skin will look more ‘blended’ together overall.

    • Thank you so much for the advice 🙂
      Yes, I have left his skin for the time being and started on his clothes instead. I think the biggest thing that really sticks out at me is the harsh highlights on his face – might tone them back at the very end.

      But! Hopefully I don’t muck up the clothes and have to start all over again hehehe.

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