I wrapped up the bases last night, and after getting the beveled edge painted, the skulls in place, and some matte varnish on them, they have grown on me considerably. Especially the bike base that is for another marine that is not pictured.(I'm going to be painting him after i finish the Intercessors)The contrast with some minor highlights and drybrushing continues to impress me as I continue to experiment with it. The skulls themselves look fantastic IMO, and I only applied one layer of the Skeleton Horde contrast paint, then did very minor highlights using Ushabti bone and Screaming Skull. To me, they look just as good if not better than the bone I have done in the past using Zandri Dust, a wash, and then heavy highlighting using Ushabti and Screaming Skull, and at times a touch of Flayed One Flesh.
I'm going to keep working on improving the use of these, but for now, they have definitely proven their worth to me.
The squad itself is almost done. I was a little disappointed I didn't wrap them up last night, but after painting for 4-5 hours I needed to rest my eyes and my back. For those of you that have been following and reading for quite some time, my back is still bothering me from injuring it at the gym. But, short of crippling me, or me going blind, I'm not going to stop painting or working out.
I still need to do the glowing/lighting effects on 4 of the marines backpacks, finish all of the wrist computer screens, and then add some lighting to the glorious sons of Dorn carrying the frag cannons, but they are nearing completion. After I finish touching up these areas, I can weather and chip the armor, varnish these bad boys, and they will be ready to destroy the alien enemies of the emperor wherever they encounter them.
These took a lot more time than I had hoped for, and I am losing my butt on the hourly rate due to how much time I have spent on them, but, at least they will hopefully look nice on the table.
My favorite part is the Sons of Medusa Sergeant's(marine with the power fist)face and bare head. The skin was painted with a Grey Seer base coat, Guilliman Flesh Contrast paint, minor Kislev Flesh and Flayed One Flesh highlights. This is another Contrast paint that continues to impress me every time I use it. My method of painting faces before required 4-5 layers of paint/highlights, and at least 2 washes. The final product achievable with such a small amount of work on the skin is worth it's weight in gold. I am going to continue to work on improving the method I am currently using, but as of right now, I am in love with this stuff. The eyes an Irises are still a pain, but practice makes perfect.
Here's the squad finally entering it's final stages. I will be posting the completed pics tonight/tomorrow.
Tonight, after I finish these up, I am going to start working on the 5 marine intercessor squad. Then I am going to switch gears and paint the watch captain, or Librarian I need to finish putting together.