Monday, May 25, 2015

Modernizing your past work - to do or not to do?

For those who have been painting and modelling for a long time there comes an age old question.  Do you modernize your artwork from decades ago?

My painting skills started in the 1970's and I'm still painting today.  Some of my work from the past I'm still happy with, some I cringe and wonder what possessed me to think this was better than other people's work at the time.  (Mind you some of my recent stuff I worry about as well.)

For example I have the following model sitting on my table at present.

This model was painted when it first hits the shores in Australia so I can't even hazard a guess as to how old it is. Looking at these figures I find that I have two options, strip the lot and paint to fit into an existing army or just touch up and repaint certain sections.

I'm swaying towards touch up and repaint.

The infantry figures are not badly painted.  I can highlight and apply wash to bring them up to my current standard of painting.  The wagon colours I don't mind, again a highlight and wash is all that's needed, the horses though...  The horses will have to be stripped and done again, I have no idea what I was taking at the time to come up with that colour scheme but it sucks.

Of course I could just strip the lot and start again, yet my track record with painting stripped work is not inspiring.  It just seems like more work than just reworking a piece.

I guess in the end it comes down to just what you are prepared to do.


  1. I suppose you could salvage the horsies too, by painting directly over the top of them? The other problem with stripping the whole thing is you'd have to reassemble it :(

    I reckon your on the right track though, it's not bad enough to strip.

  2. When I got back into wargaming a couple of years back I had the same dilemma. Bases in particular caused me a lot of anguish and I spent a fair bit of time repainting them. As for figures, I've decided to leave old paint jobs as they are. If nothing else they show progression in painting skill (I hope!). The problem with revisiting past models, is that it prevents you moving on to new projects...

  3. I go with the wash and highlighting of the crew and wagon myself, they do look perfectly servicable at present as tabletop standard, the horses......well that is gonna be difficult it seems, as based as they are, it's gonna be hard to remove them without damaging them from what I can see.

    However it might just be worth repainting just the barding and applying some washes and highlights to the rest of the horse, perhaps adding just a small amount of additional colour to certain areas, I would strongly recommend googling horse pictures for ideas.

    My opinions of course, it is your model of course, you lucky so and so....Always wanted that model, out of my price range these days :SOB:

  4. I've left some of my early line troops with their original paint jobs, but centre piece models such as this I would definitely strip and start again. Lovely model.