Monday, March 4, 2013

I Like New Paint

Must have picture for post, even bad picture.
Gearing up for some Dark Angels painting in the near future showed a couple holes in my paint collection, namely a step between Dark Angels Green and Goblin Green and a better shade for Bleached Bone.  I visited the only local shop that carries Vallejo Game Colors, Victory Comics, so I could get painting without having to wait for a delivery.  I found paint, namely Scurvy Green and Khaki, but did I find answers?

Let's start with the good news: Khaki is exactly what I was looking for.  It appears to be just a darker Bleached Bone, more or less, which is all I wanted it to be.  Went on easy over my dark grey primer, looked nice when finished.  Very pleased. 

The bad news?  I think I got the wrong green.  Shopping for paint on the fly isn't quite as easy for me as it used to be.  The "language" I "speak" for paints is Citadel.  Not current Citadel with all their new and trademarkable names, but Citadel colors from the late 90s and early 00s.  As noted in this very post, the paints I use are VGC which have names that are similar to, but not the same as, the old Citadel line.  Thus I am able to guess at what color I need based on names but it's an inexact science.  Add in the fact that I just keep getting older and the steel trap of my mind doesn't spring as well as it used to, especially when it comes to keeping track of what paints I have.  The result of all this is that when I go paint shopping I have to figure out what color I'm looking for in my "native tongue," translate it into VGC, check to see if I already have it, and then see if they have it on the shelf.

Does that sound like a lot of work?  It is.  Being fundamentally lazy, I like to cut corners by using the numbers on the bottles to cut out all the translating.  Since I wasn't entirely sure what specific color I wanted, I defaulted to the numbers.  Dark Angels Green (drop the Angels for VGC) is 028.  They didn't have 029 (Sick Green) at Victory, so I went with 027 instead (Scurvy Green).  It looked like it was on the blue side in the bottle, but the bottle is often deceiving and there was just the one option.

Observant readers might now be thinking something like this: if you wanted a color between Dark Angels and Goblin, why didn't you check the number on Goblin?  To that I say: mind your business smarty pants.  VGC codes are not an exact science.

Fast-forward to now, where I'm consulting yet another comparison chart and finding out that I went the wrong way.  Sick Green is the one that I want, an it should be on its way soon.  I'm a little curious about how Scurvy Green would work, but I'm reluctant to try it out even on the test figure I started today.  This sounds odd, and it is a bit odd, but there's an underlying factor at play.

Another green with poor coverage.
All paint is not made equally, which is most apparent in the greens of Citadel and Vallejo.  When I was painting out of Citadel pots (no palette, no thinning, just like a savage) greens were the best.  They went on easy and covered like champions.  It would take five or more coats of red to get reasonably even coverage, despite going at full thickness, and yellows were so bad I avoided them at all costs.  Greens were great, Goblin Green in particular, but Dark Angels Green was also great.  The VGC greens...not so much.  I put down three coats of (properly thinned, off a palette) VGC Dark Green today over my usual black primer with little effect.  The green made the primer shiny but not green in any meaningful way.  It certainly didn't look like Dark (Angels) Green.  I'm hoping that when I return to the painting table things will look better, but I have my doubts.  If it's still super dark I'll try a few more coats, but if that doesn't work then I'm not sure what I'll do.  My plan of attack for the green Dark Angels seems bulletproof (Dark Angels -> Snot (Sic) -> Goblin -> Scorpion), and the VGC greens do get better the lighter they get, but if I have to mix for my base coats then that adds a whole new level of effort and unpredictability that I'll have to reconsider how I want to paint green.  If only the VGC covered as well as the Citadels used to.

In other news I spent roughly no time at all finishing arms for the Hans.  With the Snowquester allegedly lining the DMV up for a big hit I doubt I'll have a chance to spray any time soon, so you'll have to wait for fully painted Hans action, but that's out of my hands now.


  1. I find VGC to be hit and miss. The same could be said of any line really. I prefer to mix and match. I like Reaper Master Series Greens for instance.

    1. I tried mixing for a while but found that I ended up getting the same paint in multiple different bottles. I have what is essentially Bad Moon Yellow from three different lines (VGC, VMC, Reaper, plus older GW pots that I don't count) and they're all about the same. If the forthcoming batch of greens isn't any better than what I have I'll try branching out, but I want to focus my efforts on getting all the colors I want before working out which brand does which shade the best.

  2. A wee heads up: if your local shop stocks Model Color as well, their Black Green (No.100) is much better alternative to DA Green than the Game Color version. The coverage is a hell of a lot better.


    1. I put in a paint order not long after doing this post with the Heavy Blackgreen as one of the items. Glad to hear I'm on the right track. Their heavy/foundation paints have worked out well for me in the past so I was hopeful that the darker green would too. Now I just have to wait for it to show up...