Help support TMP

"I need a cure for Painter's Block." Topic

24 Posts

All members in good standing are free to post here. Opinions expressed here are solely those of the posters, and have not been cleared with nor are they endorsed by The Miniatures Page.

Please don't make fun of others' membernames.

For more information, see the TMP FAQ.

Back to the TMP Talk Message Board

Areas of Interest


Featured Hobby News Article

Featured Recent Link

Featured Ruleset

Current Poll

1,869 hits since 23 Jan 2011
©1994-2024 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Flat Beer and Cold Pizza23 Jan 2011 3:33 p.m. PST

I haven't painted a thing in months, ever since a paint job on a WotR Man at Arms went bad last July. This is probably my longest period without wielding a brush in a long while.

How does one go about getting their groove back?

Coyotepunc and Hatshepsuut23 Jan 2011 3:42 p.m. PST

Switch up your era. Do some New Kingdom Egytpians, do some WWII, do some Great Northern War. Works for me every time!

redmist112223 Jan 2011 3:56 p.m. PST

Yup, try another period…unfortuantley that leads me into multiple periods with all kinds of stuff in the painting que…watch one your favorite movies too…good luck!


dampfpanzerwagon Fezian23 Jan 2011 4:08 p.m. PST

It usually comes back with time.

Eventually a figure (different period, different scale different genre) will inspire you. Trust me I'm a modeller!


Dervel Fezian23 Jan 2011 4:11 p.m. PST

Going to a convention or playing in a fun game… usually gets me fired up…

Pictors Studio23 Jan 2011 4:40 p.m. PST

Quit your job, then start painting for a living. When your mortgage bill looms you will have a brand new painting inspiration.

Steve Hazuka23 Jan 2011 5:10 p.m. PST

i have 2 D&D figures I can't bring myself to paint. Just not interested.

Personal logo Dan Cyr Supporting Member of TMP23 Jan 2011 5:30 p.m. PST

Read a book, see a movie…


Delthos23 Jan 2011 5:50 p.m. PST

Just grab a brush, paints, and a miniature and start painting. You'll quickly find yourself having fun again and that will get you going.

It also helps to have goals for what you want to finish painting. For my current Empire army for Warhammer Fantasy I've got a big list of goals/units I want to get done for the army. That keeps me motivated, but occasionally I get slowed down. When I do I do what I said above, just start painting, even if I don't really feel like it. Occasionally I'll find something I find I really need and I'll let that slip into my goals. I also keep monthly goals in addition to my over all goal for my army. There is an Empire forum where I post my goals. I seldom achieve them as I set them much higher than I know I'll actually achieve, but it keeps me motivated.

As others do, I've had a couple side projects. I took part in a miniature exchange last summer where I had to assemble and convert a miniature and then paint it for someone else's army and then someone else does the same for me. Right now I'm painting a VOR miniature for a painting contest. As they say, variety is the spice of life.

combatpainter Fezian23 Jan 2011 6:08 p.m. PST

Go to and see what others do. It works for me. Go to Steve Dean site and chk out the painting competitions page.

Schogun23 Jan 2011 6:43 p.m. PST

What I do or try… (in no particular order):

1. Play a game to get your juices flowing again
2. Go to a convention (and play some games)
3. Base some figs -- easier than painting and eases you back in
4. Paint something else like a building or vehicle -- same
5. Read a book (or watch a movie) about what you want to paint -- get geeked about the period again
6. Paint something other than what you *have* to paint
7. Paint something of lesser quantity -- in case you're overwhelmed by sheer numbers
8. Volunteer to run a game at a convention -- then you have a deadline

Ron W DuBray23 Jan 2011 7:12 p.m. PST

watch a good movie about what you need painted

CeruLucifus23 Jan 2011 10:46 p.m. PST

If I'm not motivated, I'm not motivated, and I do alternate hobby activities like reading or video games, and nothing gets done until I feel different. Or work on the house.

When I'm motivated but don't feel up to painting, I switch to some other necessary figure task: basing figures with unfinished bases, re-basing figures that don't meet my current standard, prepping storage/transport trays, repairing broken figures and touching up chips, assembling large creature kits, prepping/priming new figures.

Midpoint24 Jan 2011 5:31 a.m. PST

I left it until the 29th of December last year before painting a figure. Since then I've done 60 foot and a dozen cavalry in 28.

I bought the new Dallimore book. Reading that gave me a couple of techniques I was intrigued to try.

Perhaps buy a blister of figures you want to paint for themselves, even if they are unrelated to your gaming?

WQRobb24 Jan 2011 6:18 a.m. PST

Switching up things often works for me, but one thing I try to do is just paint something each night. For example I may say, "just paint one color on that set of miniatures." Then the next night, repeat the process. There's usually a reason you're not enjoying painting, either the painting subject itself or an exterior influence. This process gets you past both.

flicking wargamer24 Jan 2011 9:46 a.m. PST

I am just starting to come out of the same thing after about 8 months. Finally getting going but sometimes it is still work. I have been trying to at least do 1 color a day. At some point the figures are close enough that I can see the finish, so I press on and finish. Sometimes that inspires me to do another. Sometimes not. Then it is back to 1 color. Getting there, as I want to order some other figures but have sworn to not get more troops until more of the same are already painted!

Personal logo mmitchell Sponsoring Member of TMP24 Jan 2011 10:08 a.m. PST

"No TV for you until you paint that brigade, young man!"

There… that ought to do it!


PS: I know just how you feel. I find the best solution is to wait about a week before a convention and realize that you need more minis to run your game, so you start painting like a fiend to get it all done at the last minute!

psiloi Supporting Member of TMP24 Jan 2011 2:39 p.m. PST

Ask a painter friend to come over and paint for a couple hours. This always works for me!

Dropzonetoe Fezian24 Jan 2011 7:15 p.m. PST

Work on a backburner project. You know that box of figures you bought 3 years ago that is kind of propping up your makeshift shelf.

Open it up and just paint it!

Personal logo MondayKnight Sponsoring Member of TMP24 Jan 2011 7:37 p.m. PST

I always find, no watching TV UNLESS you are painting miniatures often helps.

It is how I got over my recent block.

1 unit of Combat Babes and 2 units of Daleks done……. several other units in work!


Old Bear25 Jan 2011 11:10 a.m. PST

I had it for nearly 5 years, so watch out!

quidveritas25 Jan 2011 2:36 p.m. PST

Quite often I will only paint if I have an upcoming game. I pick something new that I will use at the game and knock it out. Motivation + deadline.


Marc the plastics fan26 Jan 2011 4:56 a.m. PST

Found mine this new year. Basically, I had prevaricated long enough, so dragged a box of half finished down, grabbed a brush and paints, and did the first missing bit. And carried on from there with a new lease of life and enthusiasm.

So my suggestions. Stop reading TMP for an evening (that is what work is for :-) ) and just put a colour on a figure

22ndIndependent26 Jan 2011 10:47 a.m. PST

as others have said get into another period….something totally different

Sorry - only verified members can post on the forums.