I have waited several weeks to share this post with you. I have not kept my admiration for Rich Odell’s sculpt, “Amy Johnson.” A couple of months ago, I shared it at a SCAHMS meeting. Randy Myer and his wife Cathy were present. Randy is a long time member and respected painter and sculptor—and not just at SCAHMS. His name can be found in a host of magazines that center on miniatures.
The idea struck me that perhaps he would paint Amy, but I didn’t want to bother him with yet another project. I didn’t have to bother him at all. He came up after the show-n-tell very enthused with the piece. I told him I would give him the piece if he would paint it and provide a brief write-up. He was more than glad to do so. Even his wife, Cathy, was enthused about the prospect.
To remind those of you who are not familiar with the piece, here is a pic of “Amy” unpainted:
Below is the first pic Randy sent me as a Work-in-Progress:
And here is a pic of “Amy” completed:
Here is Randy Myers’ write up:
“When Steve Lloyd Offered to give me his copy of Rich Odell’s Amy Johnson bas–relief , I was flabbergasted …and intimidated. I had never painted a bas-relief OR lady before, but it was such a beautiful sculpt I had to give it a try.
“Painting a bas-relief is a not quite like painting a flat in that there is some shape and depth for light to play off of, so all the painter needs to do is help the illusion of roundness along a bit, without relying on paint alone to do the job. Photos and artwork are a useful guide for color placement.
“I began by undercoating with Humbrol enamels. The flat enamel paint helps to absorb some of the oil from the artists paint so the finish has a realistic sheen without glossiness. I used Humbrol Flesh, Natural Wood, Wine Red, and Untanned Leather to undercoat the skin with a general pinkish hue. The leather coat and helmet were painted Untanned Leather, and the fur collar Natural Wood.
“My artist’s oil skin mixture includes Jaunne Brillant, Flesh Tint, Titanium White, and Mars Brown. I blocked in the shadow and highlight areas then used a clean dry brush to remove as much of the paint as I could. The areas between the shadows and highlights is painted straight Flesh Tint, which is also removed, then the transitions between carefully blended with a clean, dry shader or filbert brush. I kept the shadows very subtle, with small variations of color to keep the face smooth and feminine. Only the deepest shadow under the eyebrow and folds around the eye and under the nose get pure Mars brown. A light blush on the cheek can be achieved by adding tiny dots of Cadmium Red, and stippling with a brush until the color is nearly gone.
“I chose to paint the eyes using enamels to better control the paint. The whites are Flat White with a little Natural Wood. The iris is first painted Oxford Blue, then a smaller circle of Winsor Blue Oil paint mixed with Flat white enamel inside. The pupil is Flat Black with a pure Flat White catch-light. Eyebrows were added with Mars Brown and Burnt Umber, while Burnt Umber alone created eyelashes. Finally, the lips are Cadmium Red, Titanium White, and Alizarin Crimson.
“The leather clothing was covered with Ivory black oil paint, which I brushed entirely off, creating a dark brown color. Mars brown and Mars black accentuated the folds and seams, which I blended until only a little color remained. I used Burnt Umber, Ivory Black, and a little Naples yellow to highlight on the top of the helmet. The fur collar got many washes of Ivory Black, Burnt Umber, and Mars Black before I picked out some of the raised texture with Humbrol Matt Chocolate , then another wash of Burnt Umber tied it all together.
“The fur collar seemed very drab after all that, so I gave it a coat of Humbrol Satin Finish mixed with Testors Dullcoat, while the goggle lenses were over-coated with Future Floor Polish.
“I painted all the metal parts with Humbrol Oxford Blue and Flat white.
“This was a very satisfying project. The delicacy of the sculpting needs only basic painting to produce a very fine result. I look forward to more miniatures from the talented hands of Rich Odell.”
Thank you, Randy and Rich.
If you would like to purchase one of Rich’s unpainted “Amy Johnson” head over to his website. While you are there check out the other pieces he’s sculpted and check back for upcoming offerings. Rich’s beautiful website is: http://www.richardodell.com.