How to setup a wet palette tutorial



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Basics - How to setup wet palette

Some time ago we spoke with Jacek about painting our own models. Yeah, we know... kind of lame that we didn’t paint our own models yet. Honestly, I put off this far too long. Some time ago I packed all of my paints, modeling tools and materials and switch to drawing, painting digitally and sculpting because I figured out that this would be much better for me and I can spend my time more productive. Well it is true it lead me to this point, but....

Running your own company is really hard and time consuming. Fun part(designing, painting and sculpting) can be reduced to about 10-20% and the rest part is hard not necessarily sexy work which just have to be done - supervising, production, social media, casting, quality control, order management, packaging ect. Believe me or not but after some time the fun factor can evaporate. Especially when business side of this hobby can hit you really hard.

So i woke up this weekend and told myself - let’s bring the fun back. Let’s get back to the point and think why we even started it! And we simply wanted to produce unique and beautiful miniatures for gamers and painters. Long story short - let’s do a baby step and just start painting :)


Perfect beginner

Fun fact is that I didn’t paint any miniature for about 6 years now. This brings me to conclusion that I am in the position of a perfect beginner. We realized some time ago that there is a lot of people who do not know how to even start or what wet pallet is or why is it even useful. So let’s make the first step and do the wet pallet.

This article may be be chaotic, but I like the saying: “you don't have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great

And it’s all about fun, so we do not have to be perfect :)

Quick explanation - what the hell is wet pallet and why do i need one?

Wet pallet is like a normal pallet for painting - a place where you can put some of your paints and a surface to mix them. This is simple when you paint using classic oil paints, they dry very slowly so you can use them for hours. When it comes to fast drying acrylics (and we use them to paint miniatures) it would be really painful and annoying if we would have to pour our paints all the time to pallet because they drys so quickly.When you have a mixed colors it is even harder to reproduce them later. In the economic sense it is also bad because you have to use more paints. What we need than is an environment where our paints won’t dry so quickly. Few smart people figured out an easy setup that help us to achieve it.

We will need 3 things:

  1. Plastic plate

  2. Cleaning highly absorbent dishtowel

  3. Baking paper

All of these you can easily find in any supermarket.



We need only one plate, only one dishtowel, and a piece of baking paper that will fit into our plate. Put the dishtowel into the plate and then pour normal, warm water just above the level of dishtowel.



You see the glowing water surface reflecting light? Good! Now take some of a baking paper and put on that water surface.


That’s it! Now you see how paper behaves contacting with water - it’s wet, but still solid at the same time and that is exactly what we need. Your paints stays wet longer and you have your hard surface for mixing.

I am sure that there are other methods and materials to do this. If you know any better let us know! I also know people that use paints straight from the jar(GW paints) and mix them on CD discs….I knew they will be hand one day in the future :) After all it’s all about the preferences and your comfort, so try it whatever you like and pick one that suits you best.

I know that some painters like to mix a lot of paints for their base colors and to sustain them for day or two. After the painting session they put whole pallet into the refrigerator. Never tested it, but have to try it some day:)

The results

To not end this article leaving you without any results i give you quick preview what i did that day. I will address topics like assembly, model preparation and more in the future. This is a quick overview.

I decided that i want to paint Marvin our limited model. I really like this little dude with his big attitude :) I needed a really simple, “gaming” base, so i check out what materials i hided under the bed and what i can do with it. I didn’t had cork, but i found pieces of flat milliput putty that i rolled out ages ago. Milliput is a two part putty/glue, very sticky and very hard after it dries. Good thing about this material is that you can smooth it with water.


I also didn’t had any sand or rocks and the weather outside was rainy… God bless my cat “Deedee” and her destroying ability. One flower later i had some rough soil :]

I broke the milliput surface into pieces adding some scratches and imperfections. I tried to pick up elements that looked naturally imperfect. I glued them to the base and then holes were filled with “sand”. I used cyjanopan glue like “Super glue”. The glue that dries very quickly, but you can use whatever glue you want.


Than i drilled the hole in his butt and pin down the model :) Why i do this and how to do this we will discuss another time.


When everything is clean and at right place i use old trick to spray basecoat. GW Black first and then some GW white form above to setup simple light. This trick also shows most of the details on the miniature and give you good base/surface for painting.



And now many hours later like on those cooking shows i will show you some rough photos of a finished model. Ta damm DING!


We all can read, right? But watching scale info on the monitors is misleading since the photos can often be bigger than minis in real life. To show you guys how small(13mm!) this miniature is I give you this pictuers. The smaller they are the cuter :)


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Daniel Kałaska