How to paint Super Sculpey with masters series miniature paints

After writing a post on Victreebel’s Pokedex entry, I was inspired to sculpt my own Victreebel miniature. This post is a recap of the sanding and painting, with some basic ‘how-to’ information in the last few paragraphs on priming surfaces and painting.

I’m using a Super Sculpey product for this project. I’m also using Masters Series Paints, and some Norton brand, wet and dry sandpaper I found at a local hardware store in 600, 800, and 1000 grade roughness.

The sculpture aspect of shaping Victreebel was not the key challenge here. My
experience base is making figures and sculpts out of clay and plasticine. The
real challenges was trying to be patient, and work slowly.

I did not succeed in having patience this time.

I baked the clay without taking time to smooth over the surface. It emerged from the over perfectly baked, but also a bit lumpy, rough, and dotted with finger marks.

The solution to this issue, was to practice sanding the polymer clay to
create a smooth surface.

Using a plastic container (which used to hold butter) as a water dish, I soaked the miniature and sandpaper in water. Then, I gently sanded Victreebel, turning the miniature back and forth under the sandpaper.

I moved upward through the sandpaper numbers, from harder to softer – from 600 through to 1000 – until the surface lost its rough texture, and the finger marks faded out.

For painting Super Sculpey, an undercoat will help, after sanding. Layering washes of colour will build up a solid coat, and reduce brush strokes.

Super Sculpey needs an undercoat with miniature paints, which I discovered. I specifically used Master Series Paints. Priming the surface with a brush on primer produced a more vibrant and full colour, even with just a wash layer.

Wash layers are a mix of pure paint, and then water, such that the painting a streak of colour on a paper towel leaves a line of colour that slowly changes to a pale, washed out version of the colour.

One of the first painting techniques for the miniature is to apply a black wash to the places where two parts of the miniature join, or where two different colours meet. In this case, it is Victreebel’s body and leaves, its mouth and top leaf, and the vine, which I made separately to glue on later.

After blocking out the joins with a black wash, and priming, I applied layers of washes to build up a solid coat of paint.

Without the primer, it took 4 layers to get close to a solid, lemon yellow colour for Victreebel’s body. For the leaves, I experimented with the primer, and the pale, meadow green colour. The result was a solid colour block in two layers.

For more information on the Master Series Paints, their Reaper Mini website has a list available paint by series, and a useful colour identification tool.

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