Magic Wheelchair

Help with Realistic Reptilian Paint job

I don't have the best camera, but what's the best way to make this type of paint job not have a muddy look in between the colors? Is it my over spray? All and any advice will be taken and appreciated and thank you!


  • Colors getting muddy is a common problem.  Some paints and application methods can mix together of overlap in a way that ends up appearing muddy.

    My preferred method is to build the color up slowly using translucent washes so I have more control over where the color goes and can build it up slowly to get the effect I desire.  This helps keep things from getting away from me, and I can detect when an area might start getting muddy if I keep going.

    There is often a need to paint deeper recesses and wrinkles a darker color to help the details pop, but make sure you don't go too dark (I almost never use pure black) or you can add too much contrast and make things feel theatrical or painted.

    I like what you are doing with the green accents along the brow ridges and other high points of the face.

    One thing that can help is to find patterns that may work with your character.  Things like stripes, colored patches, breakup patterns, or freckles to help add variation to the surface.  I find reference material to be a massive help in that area.  Looking at books of reptiles and amphibians can reveal some pretty crazy patterns in nature.  Same goes for insects.

    Painting characters like this is a difficult task, so don't get discouraged!

  • thank you chris! this was a big help. I appreciate the help Chris and I will defiantly work on it I am very close!!!! (first time of this paint job)

  • My pleasure!  Looking forward to seeing more of your work.

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