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I have a newbie question.

Im trying to understand how to do panel lines. So Far I got that to have a panel line effect you have to scribe the lines. Pre shade them. But then when you apply the main paint, do you have to scribe the lines lightly so the pre shaded paint gets exposed? Otherwise wouldn't the paint just cover the pre shaded parts. Please help me understand this.

Thanks
 

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Oxidation Genius
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Actually, I'm interested in an experienced answer to this too. I'm a POST-shader (using chalk pastels) myself, and I've never gotten into pre-shading. The few times I've tried, I HAVE completely covered the shading. I assume in pre-shading the final coat of paint is put on juuuust shy of 100% opaque?
 

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Here is how I do my panel line pre-shading.

I base coat the model in a medium color and then spray on gloss black on the panel lines I want to highlight (narrow lines seem to work the best). Sometimes I will also add some white highlights to the panels themselves to get a little more contrast. After the pre-shading is done I will spray on the final color but do it in such a thin coat that the pre-shading still shows, this will take a couple attempts to get right if you have not done it before.
If you should cover up too much, no problem, just try again and don't worry about stripping off the paint since most airbrushed paint is so thin just paint over your first try at the pre-shading.

Below are two of my most recent models that were pre-shaded. This first pic shows the pre-shading added on the panel lines.

And in this pic you can see I have oversprayed the pre-shading with the final undersurface color leaving just enough the panel line pre-shading to be barely seen. Once the decals and flat clear coat are on the pre-shading will still be seen but won't be the first thing you will notice about the model. If you look at a model and the first thing you notice is the pre-shading then its overdone, you want to keep it subtle.


Agentsmith
 

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What he ^^ said.

One technique that worked quite well for me when I was building gundams was to: paint part final color uniformly in that color; apply shading (I used black, but nice effects can be done with other colors); mist over with final color, just lightening--but not eradicating--the shading underneath. You can also "erase" the under-shading if you put too much.

I was using exclusively Tamiya acrylics which are rather opaque, and this very easy technique still worked well.
 

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Is aiming the airbrush spray across the part (rather than perpendicular to the part) an option? Would that prevent the new color from covering the pre-shading?
 

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Steve,
Only spray the paint on to the point to where it starts to cover up the pre-shading and stop. The hardest part is deciding when to stop painting...thats why I said it might take more than one try to get the results you want but after pre-shading a couple models its easy to learn the technique.

Also I should mention you want to have a 50/50 paint thinner ratio and put your coats of paint on in light dusting coats and keep the airbrush moving from side to side as you are spraying.

Agentsmith
 
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