People often find it hard to know where to begin when staring to paint miniatures. I’ve been painting for a long time now and while I’m no pro, I do have a pretty organised painting setup. First off, I keep everything for my current projects on a tray – this allows me to quickly clear my desk for when I need to work. It has the side benefit of keeping everything exactly as I left it. I own paints from several different ranges, but Citadel (Games Workshop), P3 (Privateer Press) and Vallejo are my main brands. They are all acrylics and mix well together. I also have a selection of inks, washes and dips. I don’t dip, I ‘splash on’, but either way it’s too messy to do at my desk, so the dips are kept in my shed. I have two Army Painter dips out there and I only use them on 15mm soldiers (so far).
I store my paints in an old make-up case that my wife kindly donated to my painting cause. It stores about sixty paints and some brushes – I try to only have the paints on my painting tray that I need for the current projects. Otherwise it gets too cluttered. Another minor organisational thing I do is to write the initials of each paints name on the lid of the paint, i.e. Shadow Grey is SG painted on the lid in that colour. It just makes it easy to find each paint when I’m looking for it. I mix my paints on the mess that is my palette (seen in the foreground) and I only use one water well, but I am careful to always wash it out and refill it after using metallics. I have loads of brushes from different manufacturers, but again I try to only have a few out so I don’t have too much choice!
Above the painting area I have an adjustable lamp with a 100W equivalent energy saving bulb. I usually have the main ceiling light on (another 100W bulb) as well. I’ve toyed with daylight bulbs, but miniatures are rarely seen in daylight as most tournaments and clubs are lit artificially so I paint in artificial light. The only other thing of note is the old paint pot with blue-tac on the top. I use this when I’m painting hero miniatures – it gives a little more control than holding their base!
With the computer in front of my I often have music or podcasts (Iron Agenda and Focus and Fury being staples) playing. Anyway – that’s my painting setup!
PS Pictured are the Swamp Gobbers, Khador Mortar Crew and Drakhun dismount ready to be based. The latter two are my final Khador miniatures before MkII. I am now fully painted! More on them later.