Friday, December 6, 2013

Painting Zombie Plague Minis Part 1. Tubby Preparation and Basing.

Joe Zombie, Dead Sexy, Timmy, Chelsea, Crissy, John, Dirt Nap, Rose Frum,  Tubby.
These are the nine characters that I'll be painting miniatures of.

I've finally been able to send out most of the reward levels from the Zombie Plague Miniatures Kickstarter so now it's time to focus on painting the $100 level rewards. There are ten of these rewards to do with nine figures each. Ninety figures seems like a discouraging number of minis to paint but given proper preparation and planning they will be finished pretty quickly. 

Prepping and painting large numbers of miniatures always feels like a meditation exercise to me. We I am properly focused on the task hours slip by and I seem to finish the various steps effortlessly. This zen-like state is one of the things that I miss about being able to paint everyday and something that I'm keen to re-learn.

First up will be Tubby, the unfortunate housewife who after being bitten by her infected husband, decides a nice relaxing bath is all she needs to feel better. Unfortunately she's been in the tub for several days and isn't feeling so fresh.

Tubby was inspired by the Tarman zombie from Return of The Living Dead.
The Tubby mini will be a pretty easy paintjob and this will help me get my painting chops up before I tackle the other characters.

I first start by cleaning the Mud & Gutz bases that I'll be using for all of these painted minis. The casting has been done in such a way that there are very few moldlines. There is a triangular bit of plastic that needs trimmed off of the bottom of most of the bases. Flush cutters work well on this. A quick trim with a hobby knife and some sanding gets the job done. Next up I wash them with dish-soap to get rid of dust, mold release, etc and then let them dry.

Next I clean up the Tubby minis with a hobby knife and needle file. These have very light mold lines so clean up goes very quickly. I then clip off all of the base tabs so I can pin mount the minis to the bases.

I use three tools to add pins to minis: a needle file to make a clean, flat surface, a needle tool to make a pilot hole, and my trusty pin-vice to drill the hole. With a mini as small as Tubby it can be difficult to drill a deep enough hole because her feet are so small. Make sure you plan your drilling so that you can at least a couple of millimeters into the part.

I use an old Citadel Miniature trick for marking the base where I want to drill matching holes for the miniature to fit into. I dip the ends of the two wires into paint and then mark the base. This gives a much better idea of where to drill than just eyeballing it.

Notice that the wires are much longer than necessary. Once the glue is dry I just clip them flush
with the bottom of the base.

The Mud & Gutz bases are designed so that minis straddle the various gut piles but if you have trouble finding good, flat footing you can trim away the extra detail easily with clippers or a hobby knife. I used super glue to mount the wires in the minis and then onto the bases.

"We need towels!"

Next in Part 2: Priming and Painting!


  1. Neat! Looking forward to the finished product!

  2. Bookmarked. Looking forward to every update.


  3. Awesome :) Some quality prep work there, really looking forward to checking your mass painting technique!!
    Good luck sir!