Painting People

A very common sight at airports, even in the mid 1990s, is security. The real location that the Gatport Airwick diorama is based upon, even has its own dedicated force within the county. In order to feature this element of an airport layout, I went and purchased an 4mm scale police officer from Montys Models via Dart Castings.

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Most, if not all personnel involved in security, will wear very dark coloured clothing of sorts, so when researching the colours to use for painting this figure, I discovered about scaling colour and found out that painting what appears to be black clothing, using actual black as a paint colour actually looks totally wrong.

This realisation about modelling the colour black, also jogged my memory from a visit to the Harry Potter Studios in Leavesden years ago. The tour staff explained that during filming, the majority of the cloaks used in the scenes were actually coloured dark blue, not black, because black clothing doesn’t show up at all well on film and television.

As a result of this discovery, I purchased some colours to use for painting the clothing and opted for Tamiya colours ‘XF-69 Nato Black’ and ‘XF-85 Rubber Black’, which are really very dark shades of the blue scale, but once photographed, show up as black better than Matt black itself.

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