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Painting a Bust : Tecumseh 1807

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That was my first trial on painting a bust and I believe trying to explain how to paint is harder than painting. I am sure photos will be more helpful than my words.

The bust is 1/10 scale Shawnee Chief Tecumseh 1807 from Amati. It is made of eight light cream resin parts. In my sample; there was some excess resin to clean and some small air bubbles to fill in but the details are very good.

about tecumseh
Tecumseh , Shawnee war chief and pan-tribal political leader (1768-1813) was born at Old Piqua, a Shawnee village on the Mad River in Ohio. Tecumseh (Panther Springing across the Sky) was the fifth of nine children born to Puckeshinewa, a Shawnee warrior, and Methoataske, a Creek woman. Puckeshinewa was killed in 1774 at the Battle of Point Pleasant, and in 1779 Methoataske emigrated to Spanish Louisiana. He remained in Ohio, living with Tecumapease, an older, married sister, but was influenced by Chiksika, an older brother who opposed white settlement of the Ohio Valley. Chiksika and Tecumseh fought against the Americans in 1782 and 1783, and raided settlements south of the Ohio in the post-revolutionary period. In 1788, after Chiksika was killed in Tennessee, Tecumseh remained in the South and did not oppose Josiah Harmar's campaign into Ohio and Indiana (1790). In 1791 he led a party of Shawnee scouts who monitored Arthur St. Clair's march up the Miami River, but he did not participate in the attack upon St. Clair's encampment. On June 30, 1794, he joined in the attack upon Fort Recovery, and two months later he led a party of Shawnee warriors at Fallen Timbers, but he refused to participate in the Treaty of Greenville (1795).

Please see this link for more information about Tecumseh.

I started cleaning the excess resin on figure with file and sandpaper, then I washed the figure with mild detergant in warm water to get rid of oil and dirt. As dried, I undercoated it with Tamiya XF-2 Matt White. (Photo 4)

I let the undercoat dry for a few days and then started to paint the pupils and eyebrows. I did the outerlining of upper side of eye and pupil with 0.1 black rapido lining pen. I painted the eye in Andrea Color AC-17 Brown and eyebrows in Andrea Color AC-26 Black. The center of pupil and white dot are also painted in acrylics. (Photo 5)

As for the flesh tone; thinking this is an Indian figure and also the basecoat will get darker after my oilwash, I prefered Light Brown No.2 from Andrea Flesh Paint Set. (Photo 6)

Hair is painted in Andrea Color AC-26 Black and drybrushed in Burnt Umber oil. (Photo 7)

I painted the scarf wrapped on head in Vallejo 946 + Vallejo 951. (Photo 8)

To paint the dots on the scarf, I cut tip of a toothpick , used it as a brush and painted the dots in white acrylic paint. The blue necklace is painted in Vallejo 841 Napoleon Blue, metal parts are first painted in black arcylic paint and then drybrushed in Games Workshop Boltgun metal paint. Cape is painted in Vallejo 811 Blue Violet.
Then I started to make tones on the face. I made a mixture of Burnt umber and less amounts of Permanent magenta + Terra Rossa + Naples Yellow and added a few drops of turpentine to the mixture. I daubed the whole face with that mixture and 5 minutes later, I cleaned the excess paint with tissue paper . This process should have be done very slowly and softly to leave enough paint on deep parts on the face. Using a quite thick brush and making upwards moves; I blended the oil paint on the deeper details and obtained a soft blend on the shades. To make the highlights ; I added more Naples Yellow to my mixture and did the highlights in the same blending method. For more highlights on cheeks, nose,chin and between eyebrows I made drybrushing in Naples Yellow. As the final detailing on the face ; I used Burnt Umber + Black for deep shades and Permanent Magenta + Naples Yellow + Terra Rosa mixture for lips. (Photo 9)
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About the Author

About Ragip Oy (zwan)

Born in 1963,married and living in Istanbul with my wife and 2 kids. I started to model with wooden ships in my teens. Then lack of space at home changed my route to aircraft and afv. My last stop is figures. I am painting figures and busts since 2003.


Lovely work on the patterns. Heck, I'd love to see an SBS on the patterning alone! Keith
FEB 02, 2006 - 03:26 AM