First paint effort... some questions ;-)

Hi all,

At the moment i am recovering from Covid, so i started building my first model, which was really great fun! Then i tried to find the best way to paint the model before apllying decals, and bought a wet pallette and a few bottles of Vallejo Model Color. I want to paint the models by hand/brush.

I had read that it was almost unavoidable to start painting with primer, either with brush or airbrush/ spraycan. I like working with a brush so i bought grey primer from Vallejo, the surface primer. Today i tried to apply it on a dark grey gun, without thinning with water, and it did not go so well… it did not cover, and you could clearly see the brush strokes in the paint…

So, i wiped it clean and hope to start over again with a better plan than i had before :wink:

My questions are:

  • how do you apply/work with the primer and a brush?
  • can i put the “light” grey primer on a darker surface?
  • is it indeed a “must” to use primer? Or will the model color also work directly on the model?
  • do the decals still stick on the painted model?

Thank you all for helping out!

Keep in mind I don’t hand paint my models.

I’ve read when hand painting you need to do multiple things coats in order to remove the brush strokes.

Prime is a must it does two things

  1. It covers the color plastic to give you a neutral base color to start with

  2. It helps the paint stick to the model.

Yes you can paint a light color over a dark primer. Keep in mind the darker primer can make the paint appear a shade darker as well. it will take multiple coats of paint to get the color you want.

When applying decals you should always apply a gloss coat or “varnish as Vallejo calls it” on top of your painted kit. This will help the decals adhere properly. Decals adhere better to a smooth surface. After that you want to do a second coat of gloss coat/varnish to seal in the decals and to give you a smooth base for panel lining your kit. Finally you would want to apply one last coat of varnish in your desired finish (gloss satin flat) to finish off you kit.

Thnx for the advice on the decals! I am still curious if anyone can help me out withe the first queation about how to apply the surface primer with a brush!

My experience has only been with acrylics, in small amounts for things like the v fin, eyes, etc.
I feel you don’t need primer unless youre planning on preshading, changing the color, etc. If your going to paint the same color on top of the plastic, then it matter to have a gray middle layer much.

For the eyes of a gundam, I would thin the paint a little bit and more or less wipe it over the surface with a brush. You won’t get as many brush strokes with it, but it doesnt apply the color that well. I think its the coverage that counts.
Then after it dries, go over it again with the thicker paint.

The idea for me is to paint the back, top, and bottom of the transparent eye piece with the red of the eyes, and then paint the domino mask on the front with black. The light will shine through the unpainted lens of the eye to the red behind it.