Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Basing Alchemy with the Bruddhas

I guess by now, most people within the painting community will be aware of the work Michael Bartels is doing with The Painting Buddha project, with the aim of helping us all become better painters. The people involved are all very talented artists and as such there is something for everybody no matter the current painting level you have achieved.

This first part in the Basing Alchemy series focuses on Earth, with almost 50 tutorial chapters across 3 discs, covering subjects such as vegetation and pigments, colour contrast and referencing and sketching, Matt Cexwish and Ben Komets, guide the viewer through building and painting gaming and hidden insert bases and stunning show bases.

So having watched the first two discs before deciding to do a review, all I can say is the standard of Matt's gaming bases are in themselves pretty damn impressive and it was very interesting and informative to see a scenic base built up using the plasticard walls as I have never done that myself.

The production quality is great and the menu system is easy to use with very clear and distinct chapter points, allowing you to watch what you want when you want.

So without giving too much away here are some of my thoughts.

On Disc 3, Ben talks us through the construction and painting of a show base, that is, a scenic base with display or competition in mind. He shows us the importance of identifying and studying details in your references eg the different tones of colour, volumes and vegetation types with emphasis on the theme or atmosphere of the miniature and it's surroundings.

Some very interesting techniques are shown, including his "lazy" way of constructing the sides of his base using a dice box, constructing the volumes of his scenic base with varying thicknesses of cork board. With constant reminders to refer to your references, dry fitting natural elements and carefully choosing what looks right, the base quickly takes shape.

The viewers angle of Ben as he works is great, you don't miss a trick, the dialogue and explanations are regular nuggets of inspiration that make you think "wow, I would never had thought of that!!".

In addition, to the techniques that the Bruddhas teach you, there is another underlying message that they conveyed to me; to be inspired by real life and to have the confidence of experimenting with my colours and base building projects and not to be afraid of making mistakes on the way.

I don't want to talk you through the various techniques, as the guys do it so much better in the DVD, but suffice to say that the series of DVD's they are producing far surpasses anything else that's currently on the market, in my honest opinion.

Join the Bruddha hood and become a better painter today!!

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