Time Spent (Hours)
Yes, another Tifa Lockhart! When this kit came out, I instantly knew I had to have it. Tifa is always the best, but this kit is so much better than the previous one I built. This was purchased through e2046.
What I really liked about this kit is it is a much more realistic version than the original. I had also just finished playing the long awaited FF7 Remake on PS4.
From a goal perspective on this kit, I wanted to focus on some painting techniques I’ve been reading about. Lately I’ve been educating myself a lot around different painting techniques, but the materials are mostly centered around wargaming / miniatures. However, most of it seems to transfer pretty well, although I still need more practice for sure.
This is my first real deep dive into using water-based acrylics. Historically I’ve used Mr. Color (lacquer line) for nearly every paint job, minus a few enamels/acrylics for tiny details with a brush but nothing major. On this project, I gave it a shot using the water-based acrylics for a lot more. I wanted to try using a wet palette to make brush painting easier, which needs water-based. I only had a few pure colors on hand (red, green, blue, white, black, yellow) so I had to rely on mixing on the wet palette to get any colors I wanted to use. End result, I’m in love. I need to get some more, but I see myself transitioning away from Mr. Color most likely. These are just too convenient due to ease of cleaning, mixing on wet palette, can brush well, can airbrush, less toxic, don’t need to wear a mask, dropper bottles, and likely more.
The skin was airbrushed using Gaia Notes flesh tones, but the rest of the kit is using AMMO products and a lot of hand painting.
Since this kit had such nice sculpted hair, it only made sense to me to try and practice improving hair painting. Ultimately, it didn’t turn out as well as I hoped, but I sure tried. Layering colors and working with highlights/shadows seems to be a very big focus to improving technique, and it’s no exception on hair. I watched several videos and put down my layers, but never got the highlights as I hoped. I did add a bit of dry brushing at the end for final highlights as seen in some videos as well, but the texture/pattern doesn’t quite work IMO (it would’ve been ok on something like metal parts for chipping/scratches). The shadows also are hard to really notice. By the time I applied all my washes, shadows, highlights over the base, it’s all pretty subtle and most of the different layers of color I tried to apply don’t really give much to the end result. I will have to try again next time…
Another area I tried to focus on a bit was texture variations for the clothing. For the most part, I put down a base color and then used a sponge to apply another layer on top, hoping the sponge would provide some of the desired texture on her skirt. In addition, I continued to try and focus on shadows/highlights. Before the base coat, I did some pre-shading. I applied some highlights and shadows with a brush, as well as a wash. The wash ended up changing the appearance a bit more than expected – I thought it was supposed to help pull together the highlights and shadows a bit, but instead it changed the skirt/arms to have a more leathery worn look. It still looks fine in my opinion, but different than planned.
- Acrylic paints are awesome. I avoided water based acrylics for far too long. I think it began when I started painting Gunpla and a lot of people were using Mr. Color lacquers, airbrushing, etc…I stuck with lacquers for years and years, never really giving much thought to water-based. Unfortunately, lacquers airbrush well but are hard to use with a brush. This poses a problem if you want to start trying to focus more on highlights, shadows, smaller details, etc. I have found. You can try and airbrush and pre/post shade to some extent, but hand brushing really helps in many cases, and if you have to change to different set of paint for your hand brushing than your airbrushing, it’s effort to match colors. Water-based ones brush well, you can use a wet palette, and you can airbrush them. Also, most come in dropper bottles for convenience, whereas Mr. Color does not.
- Painting hair is still one of my biggest challenges. I’ve read a ton around how to paint hair, watched many videos, and it’s still really hard to get right. I guess I just need to keep practicing….