We all think about paint. Some of us might not talk a lot about it, maybe we are not hobby paint snobs, some of us don’t even know the difference between an inkwash and a glaze ~raises up his hand~. But we all (hopefully) paint our figures and think about our paints.

First, I’ll share a secret. I do not use “hobby paints.” Not at all. They are way too expensive here and I learned how to paint with cheap, decorative acrylics. And I got quite good with them, enough as to never actually need to buy expensive fancy hobby paints. Most people here love their Vallejo colors, their Games Workshop mix of shades, swearing they are even better than artistic acrylics (remember, I use decorative). Truth is they spend lots of money on them, which is reason enough to be proud of your choice. Another truth is that no one, never, ever, notices I paint mine with cheap decorative acrylics. They usually try to find out the mix and matches I did with my paints, which usually is a mix and match (I rarely use a color straight from the bottle) and they feel a little disappointed when I name brands such as Dekora, Teniers or Atelier.

Now, back to my own paints, those are some of the brands I like. Specially Dekora. They are great, but sadly their black isn’t up to their game. In fact it’s one of the worst black colors I’ve used. An extra drop of water and the thing breaks and it’s impossible to use.

Now, here’s the second little secret. I prime 95% of my figures black, and never use spray paint. I just don’t like the randomness of spraying the figures, sometimes too much, sometimes too little, and always needing additional touch ups with a brush. Therefore I prime every single figure by hand on advance, while doing bases or some other “dirty work” that’s not really painting. No one can say that this slows me down at all.

Now, Dekora’s black just isn’t up to my standards. It will never adhere to metal, even less to plastic. But one day I found the perfect black. Teniers is the brand, and the thing just covers anything. Any material, any surface, any color, anything at all. I can even water it down to a wash level. Suddenly I was getting low on the color. Stopped using it to really paint and kept it just for priming, using an alternative to paint (Preference brand, a new kid at least for me). I searched for Teniers and just couldn’t find them.

Preference for regular painting, Teniers for basecoats, and a random Dekora paint because they rock!

Last week, I used up all my matt spray varnish. Now this does slow me down. Some of the recent figures in this blog have been spray varnished with the shiny thing, then brushed with matt varnish, which adds an extra step and never looks exactly as I want them. This sent me in a wild chase for my perfect matt varnish, since I was really in need. At this one artistic stationery shop I found some Tenier paints. It was a marvelous moment, but most of the little bottles were out. Only thing left were the strange colors, meaning they ran out of the “regular” ones and didn’t restock. But around it there was this big round jar of Teniers black paint. It was the legendary black Teniers. Not really, it was actually a big pot of artistics range, which is supposed to be even better than the one I use. And of course, it probably cost me 25 times less than a little bottle of any imported hobby paint.

With you, Teniers artistic black paint. And a boatload of it.

Now I can refill my small snap-top pot, and for quite a while. You see, I’m no paint snob, but I have my preferences and I have at least 3 black colors in use at any one time. The Teniers for priming. The Preference (or sometimes Atelier) for painting, and a big pot of AD black paint for scenery and terrain.

So there you have it. I had to talk about paint some time, but being a simple painter with no strange techniques or fancy accessories, this is all you get.

Oh yeah, a small sneak peek down there of things to come.

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