1/9 V-Bust – Lt. Col. John Frost cmdr 2nd Parachute Battalion – Arnhem 1944

9th March 2016

You might remember in the last update I thought the eyes were a bit boss-eyed?

Well I also wasn’t happy with the texture of the face. Looking at the close-up photos I took last time I really didn’t like the grain in the paint on the face and wasn’t totally convinced that the problem was with the bust. I had a feeling that when I primed the figure I had the paint too thick and that it may have introduced a texture to the finish.

Given that the niggles were starting to pile up before I’d even got very far at all I decided it was time for Col. Frost’s alcohol bath so I gave him a dunk in 99% IPA and a scrub with a stiff brush.


Looking at the bare resin, there is quite a texture to the nose – you can feel it if you run your nail over it. The rest of it isn’t too bad so I was definitely at home to Mr. Cockup on the priming last time.

To sort out the nose I gave it a very light sand with a fine grit wet sanding sponge. The sides of the nose got a mild scrape with the side of a scalpel blade.



Ok, on with the black Tamiya XF-1 ( nice and thin this time!). No texture this time.

Tempting to call him done in his new role as a coal miner, but we’ll crack on…



Then back on with the Tamiya White (XF-2) – very heavily thinned. Much better this time!

Tempted to call him done in his new role as a Portland stone statue…



Getting back on track, here he is with about 5 coats of Andrea Flesh Tone #1 mixed with Citadel Lahmian Medium to thin it. Much happier with the skin texture this time!

The following photo is where I had just blacked in the shape of the irises, I pulled this into photoshop before proceeding so I could measure the position of the irises with the ruler tool to make sure they are the same size and equally spaced in the eye sockets. All seems well at this stage…



Here we are, back to where we started but with the eyes better aligned and a youthful complexion. Relatively youthful. Youthful as far as playground leather footballs go.



While the clear coat over the eyes dries I decided to crack on with the shading on the face.

In the photo below you won’t see much difference to the previous photo – this is a good thing. Shading should be a subtle iterative process (rinse and repeat). Here I’ve been going over the areas of the face that will attract a shadow such as under the eyebrows, sides of nose, in the laughter lines, under eye lids, under nose and under the chin and down the neck.

The colour I used for this was the Andrea Flesh #1 with a little Vallejo Model Color Mahogany Brown. This was very heavily thinned with Citadel Lahmian Medium to form a glaze. You could use water to thin it but I like Lahmian Medium and am just going with what I know so far 😉 The tone you’re going for here is just slightly darker than the base flesh tone (the base flesh tone is the Andrea #1).

The trick with glazing is that the glaze should be very transparent. If you brush it on the back of your thumb it should have a faint tint of the colour you are using. But most importantly is that you need to remove the excess water from the brush before applying the glaze. To do this simply pick up some glaze on the brush and draw it across a paper towel. Then give it a test on the back of your thumb, the brush should feel more damp than wet. If you apply the glaze like a wash it will run everywhere and pool, and you will end up with tide marks and all kinds of nightmares. A proper glaze should be so thin as to almost dry as soon as you apply it.



Below you can start to see the effect building up… Noticeably across the forehead, under the eyebrows and in the laughter lines.



Now I’m adding more mahogany brown to further darken the glaze, giving the darker areas (under chin, behind ears) a really good coat of the dark stuff.

Take more care on the face, you don’t want to massively overdo the shading. Not like in the Andrea flesh paint instructions which (if I’m honest) end up with the kind of face you get when 7 year old Susan has been dabbling at Mum’s dressing table unattended…

You can see I got a bit of a harsh line below the bottom lip – looks like a stain. This will get blended out later so don’t worry about making mistakes – they can be easily corrected.



Here’s a side view of the shading so far. Note the shading around the edges of the face – where the hair meets the hat, in front of the ear and on the side of the nose.



And the other side.

Here the shading can be seen mainly above the eyebrow, under the eyebrow, side of the nose and some wrinkle lines on the cheek. There is heavy shading under the chin – but this is hard to notice because it looks like a shadow (which it is) 😉



Next update – carrying on with some tweaks to the eyes, and adding some highlights.

Thanks for visiting!

I write this blog for fun, to share what I've learned, and to share my builds with you. If you like what you see here please leave a comment, and head over to facebook and like my page!

Cheers - Rich

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