I started painting her for the Dark Sword competition in December. I didn't make the contest deadline for the sake of PhD application deadlines.

Each part of her attire is based on true peacock coloration, not just the back of the cloak. Those birds have a lot of different types of feathers and skin colors! This was my first major freehanding experience, and it was thoroughly entertaining.

I'm a geologist, and was obligated to do some interesting rock stuff, although this is my first venture into "basing" minis beyond gluing a few premade tufts. I painted the rock as a gneiss, and crushed some of my own New Mexico schist into rock-rubble to go on top of that. I selected garnets from the schist, and some from my jar of Montana garnets to glue in as extra cobbles. The tall grass is made from actual peacock feathers that I glued into long tufts.

Comments and points for me to improve are welcome! I'm a slow painter, but I always want to improve.
  • Melanie (Serafin)

    I really like the color combination and the cloak :) i guess you maybe need to thin your paints more. The surface seems to be really rough

    • Rhiana, "Cyradis"

      Melanie, thanks for the feedback! Surface smoothness is probably my #1 trouble spot right now, and in part (not totally) is due to my climate. I do thin my paints quite a lot, but in Colorado, the air saps the moisture right out. I get limited working time, and paint starts to kinda pill up and get grainy. Certainly it is something for me to work around, but I’ve noticed it happening at any thinness level if I don’t pull the brush away soon enough. No thinning, super thin glaze… it will happen. Perhaps I shouldn’t have included close up photos - much more noticeable there! I like the color balance though for the face, even if surface isn’t perfect. The quiver is deliberately textured, however. Not by the gunky paint, but brushstrokes are on purpose to make it more leathery.

      Do you think using an additive such as flow improver or drying retardant may help with my dilemma? If so… any idea on proportions?

  • Oleg BurdykinPLUS

    Hey! A nice job here, keep going!
    I hope that no peacocks were harmed during your base construction)))
    Speaking of fast drying paints - what kind of paints have you used? And what brand?

    • Rhiana, "Cyradis"

      Hey Oleg! No peacocks were directly harmed in the creation of the project, but who knows what happened to the birds that donated feathers that went onto the base.

      I use mostly Reaper paints and a smattering of Scale 75, with a rare occasion for Vallejo or The Army Painter. They’re all acrylics made for mini painting. Most of the ones on this are Reaper, but I made heavy use of S75 for the pale yellows, and leather colors (Arbuckles Brown is amazing).

      Just started trying out a glaze medium instead of pure water for thinning today - unsure of results with it thus far, but I’ve only played with it an hour or so.

    • Oleg BurdykinPLUS

      Well, those are some of the best paints out there in the market. Do you use wet pallete? That’s quite a handy stuff to keep your paints wet.

    • Rhiana, "Cyradis"

      Yep, best purchase ever for painting. This figure had sooo many colors on it!

      I just picked up glaze medium to play with. So far fine but not mind blowing.

  • Kara Nash

    Very ambitious peacock cloak. A challenge is always good. Echo previous comments regarding smoothness of paint.

    It gets to 38 degrees Celsius on average in Summer for me. I use a palette with small wells. It helps, but mostly it’s periodically topping them up with a brushtip of water as I paint that helps the most.

    • Rhiana, "Cyradis"

      I use a wet palette, and did for this figure. I definitely use the water in the brush as a tool.

      However, I recently moved from a desert to the Pacific Northwest and wow! The paint behaves so differently!

  • Carlo

    love the freehand on the cloak, gold!

    • Rhiana, "Cyradis"

      Thank you! It was my first time trying elaborate freehand. I practiced while looking at a pile of peacock feathers for a while before taking it to the figure. Helps that feathers get ruffled so the pattern doesn’t have to be perfectly geometric :)

  • Marc MussatPLUS

    nice colour combination and very good try at freehand painting !
    well done ! gold vote for encouragement !

  • BranPLUS

    Il y a beaucoup de belles choses dans votre peinture.  Vous êtes douée,  continuez…...

  • Marc

    I like the style of this painting !!! gold