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Are you ready to tackle the exciting challenge of painting larger miniatures? Well, you’ve come to the right place! In this article, we’re going to dive into some expert tips and techniques that will help you bring those big minis to life like never before.

We’ll cover everything from brush selection to applying base coats and adding depth with drybrushing. So get ready to level up your painting skills and create jaw-dropping miniatures that will leave everyone in awe.

Let’s start by talking about brushes. When it comes to painting large minis, it’s essential to have the right tools at your disposal. You’ll want to invest in some high-quality brushes that can handle the larger surface area. Look for brushes with a good balance between softness and firmness, as this will give you greater control over your brushstrokes.

Now, let’s talk about base coats. These are the foundation of your miniature painting and can make a world of difference in the final result. When working on larger minis, it’s important to apply thin and even coats of paint. This ensures that the details of the miniature aren’t obscured and that the colors come out vibrant and smooth.

Once you’ve got your base coat down, it’s time to add some depth to your miniatures. One technique that works wonders on larger minis is drybrushing. This technique involves using a dry brush with a small amount of paint and lightly brushing it over raised areas, creating highlights and shadows. It’s like adding a touch of magic to your miniatures, bringing out all the intricate details and textures.

Remember, painting large minis is an art form, and just like any art form, it takes practice and experimentation to master. Don’t be afraid to try new techniques or mix colors to create unique effects. The most important thing is to have fun and enjoy the process. After all, painting miniatures is all about unleashing your creativity and immersing yourself in a world of imagination.

Choosing the Right Brushes

Choose brushes that are specifically designed for painting large minis to ensure optimal control and coverage.

When it comes to choosing quality brushes, there are a few key factors to consider. Look for brushes made from high-quality materials, such as synthetic bristles or natural fibers like sable or kolinsky. These materials offer excellent paint retention and allow for precise application.

Consider the size and shape of the brush. Larger brushes are ideal for covering larger areas quickly, while smaller brushes are better for intricate details.

Brush care and maintenance are also crucial for maintaining the quality and longevity of your brushes. Clean them thoroughly after each use, using a gentle brush cleaner or mild soap, and reshape the bristles to their original form.

Preparing the Miniature for Painting

Before you begin painting your large miniature, there are a few crucial steps you must take to prepare the surface. Start by thoroughly cleaning the miniature to remove any dust or residue that could interfere with the paint adhering properly.

Cleaning the Surface

To ensure optimal paint adhesion, start by thoroughly cleaning the surface of your large mini using a soft brush and mild soap. This step is crucial as it removes any dust or debris that may hinder the paint from adhering properly. Here are four key techniques to effectively clean the surface:

  • Begin by gently brushing the miniature with a soft-bristled brush, such as a small paintbrush or makeup brush. This will dislodge any loose dust or particles.
  • Next, mix a small amount of mild soap with water to create a gentle cleaning solution. Dip the brush into the soapy water and carefully scrub the surface of the miniature, paying attention to any intricate details or hard-to-reach areas.
  • Rinse the miniature thoroughly under running water to remove any soap residue.
  • Finally, pat dry the mini with a clean, lint-free cloth to ensure it’s completely dry before proceeding with the painting process.

Priming the Miniature

There are various priming techniques you can utilize, such as brush-on primers, spray primers, or airbrush primers. Regardless of the method you choose, the importance of primer coverage can’t be overstated. A well-primed miniature ensures that the paint adheres evenly and smoothly, preventing issues like paint pooling or flaking.

It also helps to enhance the vibrancy and richness of the paint colors. Therefore, take the time to prime your large mini properly, ensuring full and even coverage, to achieve a flawless and professional-looking paint job.

Filling Imperfections

Now that you have primed your large mini, how can you fill any imperfections and prepare it for painting? Filling gaps and smoothing surfaces is crucial to achieving a flawless finish. Here are some expert tips to help you get started:

  • Gap filling putty: Use a gap filling putty to fill any gaps or seams on the miniature. Apply the putty with a small spatula or brush, ensuring it fills the gaps completely.
  • Sanding: Once the putty has dried, use fine-grit sandpaper to smooth the filled areas. Sand in gentle, circular motions to avoid creating new imperfections.
  • Primer touch-up: After sanding, check if any areas require touch-up with primer. Apply a thin coat of primer to ensure a consistent surface for painting.
  • Inspect and repeat: Carefully inspect the miniature after priming and filling. If any imperfections are still visible, repeat the filling and sanding process until the surface is smooth and flawless.

Selecting the Perfect Color Scheme

When choosing the perfect color scheme for your large mini, it’s important to consider the overall aesthetic you want to achieve. Color theory plays a crucial role in creating a visually appealing miniature.

Understanding how colors interact and complement each other will help you create a harmonious composition. Consider using contrasting colors to add depth and visual interest to your mini. Contrasting colors are located opposite each other on the color wheel, such as red and green or blue and orange. This creates a dynamic and eye-catching effect.

Additionally, using a limited color palette can create a cohesive and unified look. Experiment with different combinations and shades to find the perfect color scheme that enhances the details and brings your large mini to life.

Applying Base Coats and Layering Techniques

Now that you’ve selected the perfect color scheme, it’s time to move on to applying base coats and layering techniques.

Prepping the surface is crucial for achieving a smooth and even finish, so make sure to clean and prime your mini before starting.

When choosing color combinations, consider using a mix of contrasting and complementary shades to add depth and dimension.

Prepping the Surface

Proper surface preparation is crucial for ensuring that your paint adheres well and stays on for the long haul.

Here are some key steps to follow:

  • Begin by cleaning the surface of your mini thoroughly, removing any dust or residue.
  • Use sanding techniques to smooth out any rough areas or imperfections on the surface.
  • Apply a layer of primer to create a smooth and even base for your paint.
  • Once the primer is dry, start layering your paint, building up thin coats to achieve depth and vibrancy.

Blending and Shading Techniques

To achieve smooth and seamless transitions of color, begin by mastering blending and shading techniques when applying base coats and layering on your large minis. This is crucial in creating a realistic and visually striking appearance. Here are some expert tips to help you achieve stunning results:

  • Wet Blending: Apply two or more colors onto the miniature, then use a wet brush to blend them together. This technique allows for smooth transitions and subtle variations in shade.
  • Layering: Build up layers of paint gradually, starting with a darker base coat and gradually adding lighter shades. This creates depth and dimension in your miniatures.
  • Glazing: Thin down your paint with water or medium and apply translucent layers over the base coat. This technique adds richness and smoothness to the colors.
  • Edge Highlighting: Use a fine brush and a lighter shade of paint to carefully highlight the edges of your miniatures. This technique adds definition and brings out the details.

Adding Depth and Highlights With Drybrushing

When drybrushing to add depth and highlights to your large minis, begin by selecting an appropriate brush size. A smaller brush will allow for more control and precision, while a larger brush will cover a larger area quickly.

Once you have chosen the brush, load it with paint and then remove most of the paint by wiping it off on a paper towel or palette. This technique is called drybrushing because you are using a dry brush with very little paint on it. By lightly brushing the raised areas of your miniatures, you can create texture and bring out the details. This technique works especially well on rough surfaces like scales or fur, adding a realistic and three-dimensional effect.

Finishing Touches and Sealing the Miniature

After adding depth and highlights with drybrushing, it’s important to focus on the finishing touches and sealing the miniature.

Apply a thin layer of wash to recessed areas, such as the crevices between armor plates or the folds of a cloak, to bring out the fine details. Glazes can be used to add richness and depth to specific areas, such as the eyes or gemstones, by layering transparent colors over the base coat.

Another technique to create a realistic finish is weathering. Use drybrushing with a lighter color to simulate wear and tear on edges and surfaces. Additionally, you can add rust, dirt, or grime using techniques like stippling or sponge weathering.

Once you’re satisfied with the final look, seal the miniature with a matte or gloss varnish to protect your hard work and ensure its longevity.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Prevent My Paint From Drying Too Quickly While Working on a Large Miniature?

To prevent paint from drying too quickly when working on a large miniature, try using a wet palette. This will keep the paint moist and allow for better brush control, giving you more time to work on your masterpiece.

What Are Some Common Mistakes to Avoid When Painting Large Minis?

When painting large minis, it’s crucial to avoid common mistakes like rushing the process and not using a primer coat. Take your time and ensure a smooth, professional finish for your masterpiece.

How Can I Achieve a Smooth and Even Finish on a Large Miniature?

To achieve a smooth and even finish on a large miniature, focus on blending techniques for seamless transitions between colors. Use highlighting and shading techniques to add depth and dimension. Experiment with innovative approaches for stunning results.

How Can I Effectively Paint Large Areas, Such as a Cloak or Armor, Without It Looking Flat or Boring?

To effectively paint large areas like a cloak or armor, avoid making it look flat or boring by creating depth with shading. Use dry brushing to add texture and give it a more realistic and dynamic appearance.


In conclusion, painting large minis can be a challenging but rewarding task. By choosing the right brushes, preparing the miniature properly, selecting the perfect color scheme, and applying base coats and layering techniques, you can achieve stunning results.

Adding depth and highlights with drybrushing and putting the finishing touches on the miniature will bring it to life. Remember to seal the miniature to protect your hard work and enjoy the satisfaction of a beautifully painted piece.

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