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Three Pirate Ladies

Female Pirate w/ Long Coat
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$3.75 USD

Female Pirate w/Cutlass and Pistol
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$3.00 USD

Female Pirate Drawing Sword
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$3.00 USD

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Ian Newbold writes:

A super article and some nice paintjobs.

Revision Log
19 December 2006page first published

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fieldarchy Fezian (AKA Megan Maples of Meg's Miniatures) writes:

In this article, I outline how I painted these three pirate miniatures from Bronze Age. I will go over my critique of the models themselves first; then layout my materials I used in painting these, the techniques used, and the paint recipes for each model.


Three pirate ladies

These three models are interesting sculpts, and overall, I liked them. There are, however, flaws with the sculpts that made it hard to paint them convincingly.

28prt-4 - Female Pirate w/ Long Coat (left)

The back of the coat on 28prt-4 has a line going down the rear. I am not sure if it was supposed to be a fold, or if it was just a flaw. Either way, I left it there and tried to paint it as if it were part of the coat.

The abs on 28prt-4 are very pronounced and oddly sculpted. It looks like someone took two thin strips of greenstuff, and stuck them to the stomach without blending it into the rest of the model. Still, I painted them without filling the gap in the middle. It just looks odd.

28prt-8 - Female Pirate w/Cutlass and Pistol (center)

The eyes on 28prt-8 are oddly shaped compared to the rest of the models. She almost looks bug-eyed. You can paint them to look normal, but it was difficult. The arms on this figure are also not sculpted that well. There were a couple of indentations made in the arms to make them look more muscular and sculpted, but it doesn't look right - it's not anatomically correct.

28prt-12 - Female Pirate Drawing Sword (right)

For the most part, I didn't find much about 28prt-12 that I didn't like. The hardest part of this mini was trying to paint the leg that's enfolded in the skirt. I ended up just painting it the same color as the skirt, in hopes that it looks like it's completely covered and enveloped.

For the most part these are great models, and are fun to have in your collection. I am sad I couldn't keep them but, hey, at least I had the chance to paint some pirate ladies!


Reaper Pro Paints (RPP), Reaper Master Series Paints (RMS) and Vallejo Game Color (VGC), GW White Primer
Winsor & Newton Miniature 7 Series 0 and 1, Winsor & Newton 7 Series 2, 1 and 0
Two ceramic flower palettes from Dick Blick Art Supply
Crayola White Glue (same as Elmers), corn meal, dried flowers (easily found at Michael's or other local craft stores), some epoxy sculpt
X-acto knife, set of files, Liquitex Flow Aid, Krylon Matte Coat, and Silly Putty (to hold the mini to a bottletop or something).


These minis were great for prepping because they didn't have a lot of flash. They were pretty clean when I took them out of the envelope they arrived in. I had to clean them up a little bit using my set of files and an X-acto knife, but it didn't take long.

Before gluing took place

The longest part of the prepping was gluing the sword into the hand of 28prt-4, and gluing the sword and pistol into the hands of 28prt-8. I used some quick-set superglue for that, and it took a few seconds for it to start bonding.

After gluing took place

I let the minis dry overnight, then gave them a good scrub with a toothbrush and some dish soap. Once dried off, I primed them using GW White Primer.

I affixed the minis to old primer bottlecaps using Silly Putty. I have tried different materials to get the minis to stay (white glue, rubbery superglue, poster tack, and now Silly Putty). Silly Putty works the best! I have not had a mini fall of a cap yet using Silly Putty! (If you use wooden disks for bases, though, the Silly Putty will stick to it without coming off entirely.)


While I waited for the primer to dry enough, I sat down to figure out my color schemes for each pirate. I thought about doing them all in the same color scheme to make them look like an ensemble. Then I thought...

Hmm... if these were real pirate ladies, they wouldn't be wearing the same thing or the same colors. They would be wearing the colors that look good on them. They should be different. A nice mish-mash of ethnic backgrounds!

So I decided to use the different skin tones I had, and paint them to look like they came from different areas of the globe. Now on to basecoating them...

Word of Advice

Every time you add a lighter shade to your basecoat color, add another drop of water to the mix. This will help keep the paints thin while you are using them, but it will also make the color a little more translucent. You want the paint to be somewhat translucent when it goes on, so that the basecoat color will show through a little bit. You don't want a thick chunk of white on a dark blue background. It needs to be a gradual progression from your basecoat and darkest shadow color, up to white or almost pure white.


For all the models, I used the same metallics. The silver is VGC Silver, and the gold is RPP Bright Gold 08104. I gave the silver a little wash of black on the scabbard of 28prt-12, and touched it up with VGC Silver. The gold I did not do a wash on.


I used RPP Walnut for all of my lining. That is the color I always use. I just thinned it down and applied it with my W&N Miniature Series 7 size 0.


When painting faces, you need to make sure you highlight all of the raised areas. If you have problems getting faces right, then I suggest you do some people watching. This is your best reference. When I paint faces, I highlight the chin, the jaw line a little bit, nose, forehead, and cheekbones (right under the eyes). I also highlight part of the eyelid, if there is enough exposed.

The eyes are what always give people a hard time, so here is how I do eyes. I first paint the entire eye with Walnut, and then I will paint a white oval inside the Walnut oval, leaving some of the Walnut exposed so it outlines the white. Then I will do a dot of color (if enough space on the eye) for the iris, and then a dot of Walnut for the pupil. I will add a tiny dot of white to the pupil as well. For an added touch, I will add some glosscoat to the eyes. Makes them look wet and shiny!

The lips, you can use whatever color you want. I tend to go with something that looks realistic - no bright, bright reds. In this case, I used a dusty rose color that I mixed up. I mixed it by accident so I can't remember what the recipe is, but Reaper Master Series Antique Rose 09139 is a great color. Just add a little white, and do two rounds of highlights on the bottom lip. I almost never highlight the top lip - there just isn't enough space, and you don't want your lips to be too big.

I hope you enjoy reading this, and hope it helps you paint these minis in the future!