Almost twenty years ago I used to paint miniatures. I don’t know that I ever got to be very good at it, but I learned some things by trial an error. Then life happened and I stopped painting, and I have moved three times, and while I still have all of the old paints, I know that they are dried out and no good anymore. In addition to this, over the last year or so, I have backed three different kickstarters that have included miniatures, so now I have a selection of miniatures for the Sixth Gun, Rippers Resurrected, and the Cackler and Stone miniatures from Stone and a Hard Place. So with all of that, I figured I should get some new paints, something to practice on and start painting miniatures again.
I look at several starter sets of paints and ended up choosing the Bones Miniatures Learn to Paint Kit from Reaper Miniatures. It has everything that I needed to get started painting (even if it doesn’t have everything that I need to paint the miniatures that I already had). I have since worked on painting the skeleton archer that came with the set and I have a couple of thoughts on the kit.
First off, while I am not entirely happy with the color choices of the paints, they are good for what miniatures they included with the set. Also, I really like the bottles that these paints come in. When I last painted miniatures, all of the paints came in little screw top jars. If you wanted to mix colors, you had to get a dropper and use it to measure out the paints onto whatever you used as a pallet and mix them. The bottles in this set all have a dropper built-in which means that you can accurately measure the amount of each color easily for mixing, and you can control just how much you use for all of your applications.
Second, the brushes seem mediocre at best. The number 0 brush seems to be worse than the flat brush with the bristles not seeming to hold their shape (which makes it difficult to paint the eyes of the skeleton.
Lastly, the instructions seem to be fine, I did try to follow them when I painted the skeleton, and while I am not entirely happy with the outcome, I am more than willing to bet a large part of my issues where with the steadiness of my hands and being out of practice trying to do that kind of detail work with my hands.
Overall I am quite happy with the kit, and at some point I know I will need to get more colors, a new exacto knife to trim the metal flashing, and some primer and sealant (the reaper bones miniatures do not need this). I am not so happy with my first painting attempt, and will end up stripping the paint off and re-doing it (the instructions say soaking the miniature for a day in Simple Green cleaner will allow you to do this). I also need to work on taking better pictures of the process for the next attempt on one of the other miniatures which will be over the rest of this week.