• When Yarry meets Jermie and Dani

    When Yarry meets Jeremie and Dani Yarry, Enigma MiniatureSculpture : Raul G. LatorreSize : 30mm    « Figurine » shows itself to be innovative once more. In the last edition it had given three friends with different experiences the possibility of interpreting the same mini. Now it brings together in a mini-match two passionate painters with radically different techniques. An interesting experience since the medium used will be different: Acrylic and oil. After several electronic and verbal taunts concerning their favorite medium, our oil painter and acrylic painter decided to launch the joust. Each to their own, they will show each other’s mini only once they are finished. On my right, Daniel Ipperti (37 years old), 85 kilos, 1m78, 8/9 years of experience showing at the counter, member of the bivouac mini club and retired smoker!! On my left, Jeremie Bonamant Teboul (26 year old) 75 kilos, 10 years of practice, dedicated almost exclusively to fantasy. What is a Hobbit ? « In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit » JRR Tolkien.         This small mini represents a Hobbit, or hole inhabitant. Out of the universe of JRR tolkien and his book The Lord Of the Rings, These ancient and discreet people are peaceful, small in size ( the size of a child), with hairy feet, living in the countryside in holes ( cozy yes , but holes non the less…) dug in the hills. They usually wear vivid colors, and favor bucolic surroundings to the overcrowded human cities. There are three distinctive Species:Harfoot: They are dark of skin, and are smaller ; they have no beard and prefer to live in the highlands and the hills. They are the most numerous hobbits. Of their past relations with the dwarfs ? They have kept the custom of living underground (« smials &raquo. Stoor: They are taller, heavier, their hand and feet are bigger and they prefer to live on flat terrains and next to rivers, they are the only ones who are not afraid of water and who know how to swim. They left the side of the Anduin a bit latter for the Eriador and settled next to the river Bruinen (or Sonoronne) before going up towards the North. It’s this kind that Jeremie wanted to represent. Fallohide: More vigorous and adventurous then most, they have pale skin and light hair ; taller and thinner they like to live in trees or in woody areas. It’s this kind that Dani wanted to represent. Some famous Hobbits:« Even the smallest of being can change the tide of things » Bilbo baggins, The hero of the first Tolkien novel, Bilbo the Hobbit. Frodo Baggins, from the Lord of the Rings. Sam Gamegee and all of Frodo’s companions in the Lord of the rings. Lothon Baggins of Besace.Inspector YarryYarry Potter. A couple of words on the mediums usedAcrylic :        Since its development by the Spanish in the 80s, acrylic has become the most common type of paint in mini painting. Acrylic is easy to use ; it is diluted with water, lasts long, and dries rapidly in open air. A synthetic resin binds the pigment in this paint, which is pretty cheap, as a slight plastic rendering, and once dry doesn’t react with water. These paint don’t darken, get a yellowish tint, or crack with time and always stay waterproof. The blends are achieved by overlapping several thin layer of paint one on top of the other to create the illusion of a blend. Oil :        Oil paints use a mix of pigment and siccative oil, which gives a more or less fluid paste. Linen oil and Œillet oil are the two types of oil usually used. Oil paint dries slower than acrylic and allow to mix the colors better and rework mistakes more easily. What we call drying is in reality oxidation of the oil which hardens, without changing the aspect of the mini. In a way, it catches the pigments and allows the conservation of the paint.. A mini painter will most often use the paint diluted with white spirit, as opposed to a canvas painter who will rarely dilute his paint. What is Zenithal Lightning ?As it’s name would suggest, Zenithal lightning simulates an imaginary light source located at the zenith, more or less above the mini. It’s this type of lightning that is usually used in mini painting. Many masters of painting have brought their reflection and theoretical research to this type of lightning making it an unavoidable step in a painter’s progress. Its principal effect is to project shadows below volumes and not in depressions as general lighting would do. Lighted in such ways that shadows and highlight make the volumes stand out. This gives more character and readability to the mini then it would with general lighting. What is Lateral lighting ?    With experience , you notice that zenithal lighting, even though it might be used a lot, isn’t systematically the best way to light a mini. The orientation of some minis, on their left or on their right , makes it interesting to have a light coming from the left or the right. This choice was still pretty rare a few years back (we remember Dani’s Neanderthal man  done in 2003 and lighted from the side ) is getting more and more common. It’s great once you’re comfortable with zenithal lighting to personalize your lighting a bit more. To take a brake from routine, there’s nothing like it to make things a bit more interesting . The light instead of being at the zenith  will be placed on the side. This will bring out the most interesting side of the mini from an esthetical point of view. This type of lighting is often more dynamic than zenithal lighting, even more so if the mini is placed diagonally on the base. His eyes then seem to interrogate or to be attracted by the light . Small tricks to get a feel for the highlights according to the lighting :This method isn’t very precise or correct but can guide hesitating painters. It consists of placing the undercoated mini under a light, as shown in the picture beneath. You get a feel for the projections of shadows depending on where the lighting comes from. The same undercoated mini as been placed under a light oriented differently to represent zenithal lighting ( photo 1) and lateral lighting (photo 2).                                  Zenithal Lighting                                                                                 Lateral LightingWhy the choice of lateral lighting with Yarry ?    The inclination of the head doesn’t expose the top of the brow but rather the left cheeks, which suggests a light coming from this direction. Daniel and Jeremie both grabbed the occasion (without consulting each other) to displace the lighting to the right. All parts of the mini show this choice. Some examples allow a better visualization of this. Compare the two cheekbones; look at the lateral blend of the brow (and not vertical as it would have been with zenithal lighting, note the light on the nose or the point of light on the lip who show where the light comes from) [pagebreak]Painting the face    It is important to remember that the face is most important part of a mini. It holds all the elements that are essential to the definition of someone’s individuality: His emotions, his intentions, his state of mind, even more so in this case since the sculptor decided to give the face a very important volume and to get rid of any element that could distract from focusing on the face. (Hat, banner, ect.) Step 1Jeremie:Over a white undercoat I applied a light wash, without any accumulation of paint. The color used is a mix of English uniform MC, Scab red GW and Bronzed flesh GW. Daniel:Over a beige undercoat I apply a very diluted wash of a mix of emerald green and burnt umber. The mix is greener on the right side of the face then on the left where the proportion of burnt umber is higher. The sculpt of the face as become more readable, with the accumulation of pigments and pre-shadowing that as been done. Step 2Jeremie:I applied some very diluted wash with a mix of English uniform MC and Scab red GW. At this point the lateral  light is already showing. Look at the left side of the face, slightly in the shadowDaniel:I start with oil on the right side of the face; the skin color is mixed with a strong proportion of green that will simulate the shadow in cold hues.Step 3 Jeremie:The shadow are deepened with the same colors as before. It’s the superposition of coats that make the shadows, giving the paint more opacity.Daniel:I go over the left side of the face as well as the volumes on the right side that are supposed to receive the most light, the mix is the same as before with a greater proportion of red. Step 4Jeremie:The superposition of layers in acrylic allows the painter to gain in opacity and to make the blends less obvious after each pass. Here, I applied some washes of the base color or of different mixes made of the base color and of the shadow color. Daniel:The First highlights are applied, they are essentially made of white with some Naples yellow, at the same time I start to work on the frown and to give a bit more importance to the strategic volumes who are going to reinforce Yarry’s expression who in my opinion lacks a bit of character. Step 5Jeremie:The fist highlight are applied with the clearest paint of the “flesh paint set” from Andrea, an amazing paint set. I concentrate these highlights on the right side. They aren’t brighter then on the left side but cover more surface, giving the impression of a lateral lighting. Daniel:First blend, by passing a sift big sized brush. The white of the eyes is applied (skin color with a touch of black) this not being entirely necessary at this point. Step 6Jeremie:A second highlight clearer then the first reinforces it. Look at the lateral lighting that lights the side of the nose and not only its top, or clear point of the chin that is of to the right side. For the moment the blend is simple without any variation in the tone of the color or its saturation. Daniel:I go over the frown instating on the left side ( even though it’s not very visible here) the right side being almost done. This step is repeated a couple of times (2 or 3) up to step 8. The mouth is here overligned with a line of burnt umber, the upper lip is drawn as accurately as possible. Step 7Jeremie:I give some life to the face by adding small colored touches. The mix must contain a cold red not to bright, and a medium skin color. In my opinion scab red is perfect !! Under the cheekbones and on the lips the result is noticeable. Daniel:No different from the preceding step, just a spot of dust on the right eye of yarry that I’ll have to remove. Pffff……. Step 8 Jeremie:On a black base I painted the eye in a light grey color. I try to avoid white that would be to bright in contrast with the rest of the face. Daniel:The drawing of the frown on the brow gets a bit more precise, a small touch of red on the lip and nose are used to give some warmth to the face and make it a lot more friendly, the side glance is here started with some burnt umber. Step 9jeremie:I place the pupil of the eye so Yarry is looking to the left. The base is in a deep green, black would be too abrupt at this scale. Once the mini finished, I wasn’t very satisfied of the result. I’ll redo the eye later, move it a bit to the left and make it look upwards some more. See the end picture. Daniel:The eyebrow, that goes with the flow of the frowns and that give yarry and inquisitive look are traced with burnt umber. The arms are painted in their turn in the same fashion as the face was done. Step 10Jeremie:The iris of the eye is painted with a clearer green color. I had for the reflection a small clear dot on the right side of the pupil on the opposite side of where the light comes from, so on the left of the eye. I also paint the dark base of the hairs to have a clear view of the face definition. Daniel:The legs and then the hairs, even though it might be the opposite but it doesn’t have much importance. The mini is red haired or kind of light brown with tints of orange (mars yellow from blocks. I always take advantage of the shiny aspect of oil paints to place some light dots. The legs are painted in a rather dull skin color, I wanted to avoid having the eye attracted there. Step 11Jermie:At this point I went over the eyes. I only lighted the left eye leaving the right one in the shadow. I readjusted the way he was looking, giving him more purpose by having him look upwards. The finish of the face is done with small clear points to make the volumes come out. In drawing, a clear dot makes a circle become a sphere. It  is the same with a mini. They are placed in strategic points, always respecting the lateral lighting: the end of the brow, the right nostril, and the chin. Many points that allow a redefinition of the volumes of the face. This Raul, what a sculptor. Daniel:My face being almost done in the previous step, only a couple of details are reworked in the mean time, the eye, the frown, the left hand, ect. The eyes for example will be reworked once the base work  is dry and thus the shine gone. The left eye wil get a clearer pupil, the right one being in the shadow will not be reworked the same way. In fact, it won’t be reworked at all. Jeremie:Here’s a WIP to better appreciate the improvements made to the mini. After having seen Dani’s work, I decided to adjust some points. That’s also the point of having two people paint the same mini. Comparing, inspiring yourself, and understanding the choices made by talented painters…. And to progress. The contrast on the face and his expression are reinforced, the lateral light more present. I also darkened the bottom part of the mini so as not to attract the eye to this zone. Obviously some freehand are done to improve the cloths. [pagebreak]Jeremie 
    Putting different colors on a mini isn’t an easy job. The mini world unlike the hobbit world, favors color choices reduced to a couple of colors. We have to play with intonations of colors, color recalls, the color circle,… Harmony being very subjective it doesn’t reflect personal taste. But two tricks allow us to harmonies the tones. Firstly, doing the shadow with the color opposite the base color on the color circle, and then you add to all colors a unique tone, in this case catachan green from GW. Here are the mixes that where used and their justification: Yellow: Purple Shadow for the complementary and catachan green was added. Red: Green shadow for the complementary and catachan Green was addedGreen: Red shadow for the complementary and Catachan green was addedA small amount of catachan green was also added to the skin \Daniel
        I admit having encountered  some difficulties with the choice of colors for the cloths. I had no pre-established idea, apart from the will to use colors different from the illustration on the box, that being said, the illustration is also very nice. The final choice was almost an accident: having the habit of painting from time to time with what’s left over on my palette, I decided to use the emerald green, that had been integrated in the skin color previously, as base color for all the cloths. The brown pants are a mix of cadmium red and emerald green. The jacket is a cold very dark green, mixed with emerald green and mars black highlighted with white and chrome green. The cape is the same green as the jacket but with a lot less black and more chrome green. And finally the shirt… white, made of the very dark green of the jacket, with a touch of burnt umber and of course white. The couple of small reddish tones contrast interestingly with the other colors, which are cold colors. Menard:Here’s Benoit Menard’s version. We can clearly note how the pants and the cape make the other clears colors come out, The way to interpret the mini is very different of the choices made by Jeremie and Dani who give a more worrying look to the hobbit. The final word     Yarry is a really fun and enjoyable mini to paint, a definite success. The fun was even greater since the mini was the object of a challenge between two painters with radically different painting techniques, and two very different and strong artistic personalities. Despite the strange proportions, to which you get used to pretty fast, Latorre’s hobbit can be the source of many interpretations, and be painted in many different ways, which isn’t always the case for his other minis which have a very unique and different style. On a lighter note, with his biker’s spirit rooted deep in him Daniel was set to leave Jeremie in the dust, but, automatic radars helping, he came back to his senses on the way. Jeremie knew that the rabbit was going to try and out run him. Hoping for an oil shortage, a stop by the stands allowed him to catch a glimpse Dani’s work in processes. Going  back to his work, and treacherously inspiring himself from his elder’s work , he pimped his ride for the race. What was left to be done once the race over? Exchange the minis of course!! This article was written by Jermie Bonamant Teboul (Bragon on CMON) and translated from French to English by Arthur Muguet (Frenchkid on CMON).
    Comments 1 Comment
    1. Mr. Biggles's Avatar
      Mr. Biggles -
      Anybody ever notice 'Yarry's' resemblance to 'Dirty Harry' (Clint Eastwood)?
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