I first learned about pigments and their use on models from Sheperd Paine in 1975. He also taught me about washes, drybrushing, shading, detailing, and the philosophy and art of model building. If you want to find the Genesis of how we build today, Shep really is it.
Back then, though, pigments were reserved for the artistís alchemy of making oil paints. We used pastel chalks, ground on sandpaper and dusted on the model. Now, 35 years later, many companies have made it much easier on the modeler. We have true pigments, finely ground and marketed in manageable amounts in useful colors. These pigments are combined with an adhesive binding agent to make them stick to the model.
First on the scene was Bragdon Enterprises. They produced the first pigments for modelers in 1982 and are still going strong. In the last decade we have seen an explosion of pigment manufacturers, with at least a half dozen lines on the worldwide market.
Newest on the scene is Devil Over The Atlantic Hobbies
. They have introduced a line of modeling pigments to compliment their excellent new paint line which is reviewed Here on Armorama
. I was sent two review samples and was asked to evaluate them.
Iíve been using Bragdon pigments for decades and MIG pigments for years, so I have a substantial stock of pigments at the workbench and I know how to use them and what they are supposed to do. Since itís difficult to perform a useful evaluation without some reference comparison, I picked out similar colors of Bragdon and MiG pigments to put up against the DOA products.
I decided to apply them on copy paper, a test model, and wet with a carrier. I set to work to see how the DOA pigments stacked up. My test colors were a Rust
and a Dirt Brown
DOA pigments are very finely ground and rich in color. They flow and powder beautifully. The adhesive binder works perfectly and adhesion is excellent. They spread well and cover well. There is no clumping or pilling present but they adhere to surface detail and smooth areas equally well. It can be lightly dusted for a translucent look or the effect can be built up with successive applications. Multiple color layers can be applied on the model for different effects.
The photos tell most of the story. Applied on paper with a medium soft cosmetics brush, DOA pigments applied, spread and adhered excellently. On the model, DOA pigments performed brilliantly. They are very easy to apply and adhesion, coverage and color are outstanding. It was easy to tap away excess but they stayed where put. The pigment powder is extremely fine and spread easily.
Next I added pigment to 91% isopropyl alcohol as a carrier and made a single brush stroke with a #2 round red sable paint brush. I wanted to quickly simulate a single color of a rust streak. Again, DOA pigments mixed perfectly with the carrier, were smooth and rich in color, and spread and covered as expected when applied to the model surface. When rubbed with a finger it stuck firm and was highly durable.
DOA pigments were outstanding in all applications. They are perfectly suited to all pigment uses and techniques. They performed equal to or superior to the competition in all of my tests. I will be a regular DOA pigment user from now on.
DOA pigments are completely comparable to Bragdon and MIG pigments in all respects except one Ė price
. DOA pigments sell for $5 USD for a 60 ml bottle. For $5, this gives the customer 20% more product than Bragdon, and 300% more product than MIG. This is truly a breakthrough and unequivocally the best value on the market.
DOA pigments are available in an ever increasing range of colors. They can be purchased from the maker via their website and they ship worldwide. Shipping is a very economical $4.95 in the US or $13.95 worldwide flat rate for 6 bottles.
Very highly recommended.