Quickly Painting Board Game Miniatures with Contrast Paint

So many board games these days come with beautifully-sculpted, molded or 3D printed miniatures. This creates a dilemma for players. They’re miniatures, not really conventional playing pieces. Am I supposed to paint them? For many, that’s an overwhelming thought because these games can come with hundreds of miniatures (especially crowdfunded titles).

In this video, mini painter Dana Howl methodically goes through the process she uses to speed-paint board game minis. She uses tricks like “zenithal priming.” This is a technique where you prime the model in black and then do a top-down spray of white or light gray paint to create top-lighting beneath your subsequent coats of paint.

Her main “trick,” and one commonly used now in speed painting, is using Games Workshop contrast paints. These go on thinly, like a glaze, flow darker into recesses, and give you a lot of contrast with less effort than traditional base-coating, washing, and highlighting.

In the end, Dana was able to paint 26 figures (all that’s required for her first Sea of Legend game session) in 14 hours. After this first gaming session, she plans on “rewarding” herself with painting another batch for her next game play.

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