Saturday, January 25, 2014

From the Desk: Mobile Painting Kit

So recently I read Meg's post about Social Painting and it got me thinking about whether that's an option for me. The biggest barrier for me is simply being able to transport core tools that I need for painting. So to remove that barrier, and in prep for painting night with my buddies next week, I spent some time to assemble a mobile painting kit.

The first big concern I had was coming up with an adequate brush case. After a bit of hunting I managed to find this small box at a local craft store. It has a magnetic flap to close it. I proceeded to put foam in the bottom and created a second flat piece with foam on it as well. The idea is that the brushes get safely held in the middle and don't shift around mashing the points all up. I put some simple tabs on the panel piece to make it easy to pull out. The foam is just from old blister packs and just happened to fit perfectly with just a bit of resistance to the sides in order to stay securely. The pieces of cork are simply to brace up the ends of the panel since it was just made from old poster board.

As it turns out, there's plenty of space on top of the panel for paints. My dropper bottles (Secret Weapon, Vallejo, transferred P3s) all fit perfectly here too and as you can see it holds 10 paints this way. Not a lot, but enough for basic work.
In terms of the number of paints, my intention for the first couple runs of this is to work on Nephilim models that I already have an established paint scheme for. I'll just bring my paint diary and the appropriate paints from the formulas and work from there. So not having room for my entire selection of paints is not a big concern right now.

Next I needed to make sure I brought some basic supplies. This old container is serving to carry those basics safely. Paper towels, palettes, a brush cleaning cloth (lint free and super absorbent), an a handkerchief to use as a "drop cloth" so I don't accidentally get paint on other people's tables. This container also has leftover space for paints which is helpful. There's no wet-palette option in this kit, but that is still not a heavily used item for me at this point.

And here's everything for my kit (sans models) all sitting together. My travel Ottlite and a jar with rinse water are the only other additions. It's pretty compact, although not quote as amazingly compact as my assembly kit. I've got a cardboard box to put all this stuff into along with models being painted.

Now I want to point out, the only things I went out and actually bought to build this kit were the brush box and the Ottlite (and I got that lamp at 40% off thanks to a coupon), which kept my costs down pretty well. Everything else was just scavenged from my supplies that were already sitting around. Once I had all the materials together it only took me a couple hours of assembling and fidgeting with the assistance of my 3 year old son to get it to a point where I'm set to go. I expect to refine this kit as I use it more. This Tuesday I'll take it all for a test run and try to report back on what worked and what needs tweaking.

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