Friday, September 4, 2009

Gloss Varnish

When I was assembling and painting up my renegade Warp Hornets chaos space marine chapter, I decided to dip all of the finished marines in a glossy varnish that was intended for use on wooden floors / panels (etc.).

As can be seen from the pictures, the Warp Hornets already suffered from me not having a great command of painting yellows. With the varnish painted on top of the (sun burst) yellow, the Warp Hornets marines certainly stand out on the table top. Never once did I overlook a single one of these marine in play. They are almost iridescent in the sunlight!

Further, they have never once broken or had their paint chipped -- the latter being the original point of using the varnish. But as one of my opponents was fond of telling me: if I dropped any of them on to the floor, they'd simply bounce! Indeed, these marine bases are more at risk when they fall from a great height than the marines themselves (especially this terminator)!
In more recent times, I've tended to use gloss varnish only as a painting resource. By that, I mean that I use it to highlight creatures and body parts that are naturally slimy looking in appearance. In my usual armies, this means (generally) Nurgle's followers. In the picture to the left, I have one of my plaguebearer heralds of Nurgle. This particular one has had gloss varnish applied all over (rather than selectively). Notice how the redder portions of the model seem to glisten whilst the green skin exudes a slimy quality. I've also used this idea further on a Great Unclean One, which can be seen here. In the future, I'm probably going to use varnish more sparingly -- only for the open sores on Nurgle's followers to really accentuate the fetid paint scheme.


suneokun said...

I use gloss/satin enamel varnish all round... while they are 'shiny' I think the colour definition makes it worthwhile.

While its less 'camera' friendly, they are really beautiful to the naked eye.

Bomster said...

I'm a rather old-school gloss varnisher, myself. Just like Suneokun above said, to the naked eye, gloss varnish is rather pleasing. What's more, I think the models feel sturdier and more "finished" to me.

I have to agree, though, that gloss varnish and photography do not mix that well. My solution (at least for newer models) - taking a photo before varnishing.
(as done on my Plaguebearers:

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