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Made in us
Whiteshield Conscript Trooper





We've all seen on auction listings the seller trying to peddle their wares under the tag "well-painted" or "pro painted," but since this is not a standard that actually means anything in the wider world, what does it mean to you?
When you see that description in the title, what is your personal expectation for the quality of paint job? I think we all acknowledge that the term is used to attempt to add value to the listing and draw in customers. At what point, at what quality level, would the paint job entice you to pay a premium?

Personally, I expect the miniature to be painted better than I could do myself. Not to toot my own horn, but 9 times out of 10, the mini in question falls short. Further, because my main focus in this hobby is the painting aspect, a painted miniature is going to be stripped after I buy it so better if it's not painted.
   
Made in us
Painting Within the Lines




Seattle, WA USA

Honestly, at this point if I see "Pro Painted" I expect it to be crap, since that term's been so over-used and has a history of being slapped on very mediocre paint jobs on eBay. Haven't really seen much of "Well Painted," since I don't really hunt for painted minis anymore, but I'd probably expect "decent table-top to slightly higher" for that.

I know that a few years back when I still kinda watched the eBay scene, just plain old "painted" tended to show some of the better results.
   
Made in us
Scuttling Genestealer





philadelphia

Most of the time pro painted means mediocre and overpriced.
   
Made in us
Rogue Daemonhunter fueled by Chaos






Macon, GA

If I were to post an auction as “well painted,” that means that I think it’s paint job is worth keeping, and that the minis should not just be stripped. Of course, everyone has heir own standard for what they’ll repaint vs keep.

To try to pin it down, here are my tiers:
Poorly painted: thick paint, sloppy blocking, few details, no shading or highlighting, overall either incomplete or crudely done
Partially painted: what’s done is neat and does not obscure detail, but major areas are unpainted.
Base painted/three color minimum: all major components are blocked out, but there is no shading or detail work
Battle ready/low tabletop: as above, but with so me shading or highlighting. Lower end dip or army painter system models may be here
Well painted/High tabletop: neat colors, competent shading and highlighting, small details picked out, unit markings, basing. This should get solid paint scores at an event.

My Painted Armies
: Co. B, 37th Praetorian IG: 21,000pts
KOW Ogres: 4500 points
Loyalist Emperor's Children: 2500 points 
   
Made in us
Powerful Phoenix Lord





Dallas area, TX

To me, well painted means everything on a model has cleanly defined edges and at least 3 colors each: main color, shading and a highlight. How this is done can vary but that's my definition.

-

   
Made in ca
Fireknife Shas'el






 Galef wrote:
To me, well painted means everything on a model has cleanly defined edges and at least 3 colors each: main color, shading and a highlight. How this is done can vary but that's my definition.

-


This right here. Can you paint inside the lines? If so, it's well painted. If I can see paint slopped where it shouldn't be from 12 inches away, it's not well painted. Also, smooth coverage (no brush strokes or lumps)

   
Made in au
[MOD]
Cutting stuff up and bunging it back together in new and interesting ways.






Under the couch

'Pro painted' simply means 'painted by someone who paints for money'. It is in no way an indication of quality.

Even amongst professional painters who are actually good, there's a very wide range of quality depending on the level they're aiming for.

But yes, due to overuse by, shall we say, optimistic would - be professionals over the years, when I see that tag on an auction it immediately lowers my expectations.

 
   
Made in gb
Wicked Warp Spider






 insaniak wrote:
'Pro painted' simply means 'painted by someone who paints for money'. It is in no way an indication of quality.

Even amongst professional painters who are actually good, there's a very wide range of quality depending on the level they're aiming for.

But yes, due to overuse by, shall we say, optimistic would - be professionals over the years, when I see that tag on an auction it immediately lowers my expectations.


Indeed. Its at least worth a look a laugh and a headshake lol.

I think some people see their mini on sale and just copy listing without changing the title because theres no way anyone in their right mind would consider their paint job "pro painted".

Pro painted to me means good clean table top standard +1.

https://www.dakkadakka.com/dakkaforum/posts/list/772746.page#10378083 - My progress/failblog painting blog thingy

AngryAngel80 wrote:
I don't know, when I see awesome rules, I'm like " Baby, your rules looking so fine. Maybe I gotta add you to my first strike battalion eh ? "
 
   
Made in us
Stealthy Warhound Titan Princeps




 ez8 wrote:
We've all seen on auction listings the seller trying to peddle their wares under the tag "well-painted" or "pro painted," but since this is not a standard that actually means anything in the wider world, what does it mean to you?
When you see that description in the title, what is your personal expectation for the quality of paint job? I think we all acknowledge that the term is used to attempt to add value to the listing and draw in customers. At what point, at what quality level, would the paint job entice you to pay a premium?

Personally, I expect the miniature to be painted better than I could do myself. Not to toot my own horn, but 9 times out of 10, the mini in question falls short. Further, because my main focus in this hobby is the painting aspect, a painted miniature is going to be stripped after I buy it so better if it's not painted.


Oh, on auctions or sales sites? Fairly crap.

In person if they're actually talking about it and pulling it out for a game? Usually fairly decent unless they're extraordinarily self-deceptive.

Efficiency is the highest virtue. 
   
Made in gb
Regular Dakkanaut





If it’s listed as pro painted then look for a studio watermark before even clicking.
It just means they paint for money.
99% of the time, it’s only the studio ones worth looking at.

However, I’d expect someone that paints for commission to at least be able to paint to a tabletop standard and clean up brush marks and slips.
Seen countless sloppy models labelled as pro or even well painted.

My biggest nit pick though is the airbrush maniacs.
The ones who slap a coat or 2 of paint on them and try to use an airbrush to create extreme effects to cover the poor painting.
This leads to glowing everything, lava bases that give a glow to an entire model (regardless of OSL) and in general, the ones who just try to hide mistakes with it.
   
Made in gb
[DCM]
Decrepit Dakkanaut




UK

It means I probably don't want to buy it as its either

a horrible abomination of glue, blobs of paint & mould lines that's not worth the effort to strip

or

painted reasonably ok, but I like to paint my own stuff, and i'd hate to strip something that doesn't really need it


 
   
Made in us
Regular Dakkanaut





Enough that I am satisfied with the results.

Sometimes all I expect and desire is that it look "good enough". That may mean a drybrush highlight on top of washes and shades.. or it might mean a full on to the core every little damned thing done.

Honestly what I desire of any given model is that it satisfy me at that moment. That I put it down and come back and look at it and feel, yeah, good-nuff along with a sense of accomplishment or just satisfaction.

At some later date I may change my mind, strip the model and start over or "freshen it up" to whatever standard I feel it needs at that moment.

What that means, in specificity, does indeed vary from time to time and model to model.

Consummate 8th Edition Hater.  
   
Made in us
Thunderhawk Pilot Dropping From Orbit






Across the Rubicon

Without trying to call myself out too much here with my own painting work here are two examples of stuff I have painted.

Spoiler:

The above are some of my Space Hulk Terminators that I don't consider well painted. They were rushed to get a game in, and I don't have a lot of experience painting in those colors. I never did get around to cleaning up the wash which was place rather haphazardly on the models. The models are a fine personal tabletop standard, but I know clearly I could do a better job/finish them. I see these models as 6/10 Dakka Gallery Vote. Maybe a 7/10 if they were my own knowing all the flaws firsthand. They are okay and have promise but the execution is a little off and they don't quite look finished.

Spoiler:

On the other hand, I think the above Intercessors are well painted. Granted these models are simpler in design with far less colors involved, I still think the quality of the paint job I did with them is quite good. They aren't going to win any paint competitions, but it will be uncommon to encounter a full army painted as good or better in person that what I have done here. Again, I know there are bunch of little details that could added to the models to make them even better. I am just saying well painted not amazingly painted. Stuff I would give a 7/8 Dakka Gallery vote not anywhere near a 9/10 vote.

For me the slight increase in quality between these paint jobs is my boundary between average painted and well painted. Ultimately, I do consider myself a pretty average painter as good portion of Dakkanauts that post in the showcase forum have much higher quality stuff than mine (all the more impressive if they show off a full army). Most of the time I don't consider what I have done as well painted as they have very basic techniques. I think the only reason I elevate my Primaris is that they models themselves make me look like a better painter than I am.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2019/12/09 03:43:36


   
Made in gb
Longtime Dakkanaut




On an auction site, any version of pro-painted means I don't want it. Either it's absolutely terrible and over-priced, or it's genuinely well-painted but too expensive. In fact, if it's painted at all I probably don't want it since even if it's well painted it likely won't fit in with the rest of my colour scheme.

Well painted, to me, means neatly done with all colours applied to the correct areas plus at least some well-applied shading and highlighting.
   
Made in us
Da Head Honcho Boss Grot





Since I started doing painting jobs for money, my expectation of what Pro Painted is has gone down dramatically having dealt with the demands customers routinely put on me for turnaround time.

What you mean a miniature takes you an HOUR to paint? a whole HOUR?

Like, if you wanna pay me more per hour man that's your perogative but if you give me like a week to turn around 10 models you better be expecting contrast paint and that's it...
   
Made in gb
Raging-on-the-Inside Blood Angel Sergeant





Brookside Close

Some "well painted" miniatures available on auction sites are terrible, the seller may have painted them years ago and thinks they are the best in the world, which then makes them be able to demand a premium.

I've bought my share of minis online, not squads but rather one or two minis some are unpainted, some base coated. On occasion there have been well painted and some just yucky but they all end up in stripper.

I don't pay the price if its extortionate especially when I remember the prices for blisters in the 90s


WIP - Blood angels Showcase
 queen_annes_revenge wrote:
Straight out if the pot, bang it on. What else is there to know?

 
   
Made in gb
Dakka Veteran





Whenever I am done with an army in terms of usage or space I will auction it off under the "well painted" moniker. I do this under the assumption that it is a competent, neat, unified and fully based army. However, I start the auction low, say £50 GBP for a fully painted 1500+ point army and let the market judge what it is worth. I have already got my money's worth out of it in terms of the fun of modelling, painting and rarely playing so any financial returns are just gravy to me. Here are a few examples of my most recently sold army, Ad Mech from April of this year. Is it "well painted"? That is up to the bidders.

Spoiler:













But overall I agree that "well painted", just like "pro painted" does not really mean anything. Ultimately these terms are in the eye of the beholder.


This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 2019/12/09 14:54:04


Painting Warhammer 40,000 Conquest a P and M blog : https://www.dakkadakka.com/dakkaforum/posts/list/0/763491.page 
   
Made in us
Scarred Ultramarine Tyrannic War Veteran






No different for me... "Pro-painted" means absolutely nothing in terms of quality. It used to, but it's been abused far too much to mean anything today.

Seeing "pro-painted" in an eBay auction title is more of a cautionary red flag these days (i.e. Caution: Garbage inside, do not waste your time).

Bottom line... Pictures say it all.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2019/12/09 14:46:49


 
   
Made in de
Hurr! Ogryn Bone 'Ead!





I have not bought stuff in auctions, but under "pro painted" I would mostly understand a clean, professional execution, regardless of standard or detail level. Just 3 base colors can still be pro painted, if they are applied neatly, with clear borders in thin layers and without sloppy brushwork. Here professional means for me: the commission painter can most likely achieve this standard within a much shorter time than me and it would look better than when I would try this myself.
On the other hand, even if it is fully base colored, shaded and highlighted and dozends of details worked out, "pro painted" can still be quite a stretch for me, if the execution is obviously not professional. So if you clearly see that the painter lacks experience. That's were I would put most of my own stuff in, as even those models I'm quite proud of personally and where I put lots of hours in are obviously not the work of a professional.

Would I have to label my own stuff I would prefer a term like "commitetly painted" or "dedicatetly painted" or something indicating that I did as best as I could and invested some time and those are not just products of slapping on a bunch of layers of paint. Yet not claiming any professionality.

~1600 build and painted 
   
Made in gb
Longtime Dakkanaut




Scotland

To be honest, when I look at stuff on ebay I don't look at the paint job. If it is something I'm interested in, I'll use the zoom option looking at the minis etc, for tell tale signs of gluing disasters, bad conversions. The 'well painted' tag doesn't come into it because they'll be stripped down anyway. As for pro-painted(which seems to be a very bbbbrrrrrrooooaaaddd spectrum,most times very dubious) I avoid,simply because of the price tag.

 
   
Made in us
Painting Within the Lines




Seattle, WA USA

the_scotsman wrote:
Since I started doing painting jobs for money, my expectation of what Pro Painted is has gone down dramatically having dealt with the demands customers routinely put on me for turnaround time.

What you mean a miniature takes you an HOUR to paint? a whole HOUR?

Like, if you wanna pay me more per hour man that's your perogative but if you give me like a week to turn around 10 models you better be expecting contrast paint and that's it...
This is a big reason as to why I stopped doing commissions. Generally, people do not want to pay you what would work out to even US Federal minimum wage. Even doing a unit of, say, 10 dudes at a pretty basic, quick level is gonna be at least a few hours, and if you have the gall to ask for more than 30 bucks for the whole unit it seems a lot of people think you're gouging them.
   
Made in us
Scarred Ultramarine Tyrannic War Veteran






 Valander wrote:
the_scotsman wrote:
Since I started doing painting jobs for money, my expectation of what Pro Painted is has gone down dramatically having dealt with the demands customers routinely put on me for turnaround time.

What you mean a miniature takes you an HOUR to paint? a whole HOUR?

Like, if you wanna pay me more per hour man that's your perogative but if you give me like a week to turn around 10 models you better be expecting contrast paint and that's it...
This is a big reason as to why I stopped doing commissions. Generally, people do not want to pay you what would work out to even US Federal minimum wage. Even doing a unit of, say, 10 dudes at a pretty basic, quick level is gonna be at least a few hours, and if you have the gall to ask for more than 30 bucks for the whole unit it seems a lot of people think you're gouging them.


True. I find that it's generally because these individuals do not have the proper appreciation for the work and skill that goes into it.
   
Made in us
Powerful Phoenix Lord






As with every definition, it's all in the eye of the beholder.

I paint my minis to a simple Tabletop standard to the point where I'm happy with them, and not ashamed to put them on the table (even with other, far better painted armies). To some people my standard seems unattainable and impossible to reach...while to others it will appear lazy or lack luster.

I don't like painting, but I like the result...if that makes sense. So getting to a cool, usable result in the shortest/easiest method is what I prefer. Cheat all day. I will still strip/toss/sell a figure that just doesn't work for me.

I think if I referred to someone's minis as "well painted", I'd be thinking of a tabletop standard. Consistent, finished, cohesive, etc.


 
   
Made in it
Wild Wyrdboy with Minderz




Italy

Well paint is average tabletop standard IMHO.

For "pro painted" I mean at least the level you see on the GW catalogue and books.

Orks 7000
Space Wolves 5000
 
   
Made in gb
Never Forget Isstvan!





Bodt

Well Painted in terms of them being sold, to me is competition standard. Eg, the standard displayed is appropriate that the painter could enter competitions and not stand out as terrible comparatively. although its irrelevant to me, as I will never be buying painted miniatures unless to strip and repaint, and I just laugh at most that are labelled as such and have huge asking prices.

Well painted in general terms is subjective, although a set of flexible boundaries does exist. obviously the paintwork should be clean and smooth, details visible, and no paint overlap.



This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2019/12/12 09:11:41


Heresy World Eaters/Night Lords Genestealer cults.

Instagram: nagrakali_love_songs 
   
Made in us
Excellent Exalted Champion of Chaos





My own dictionary definition:

* primered - a model that simply was sprayed a color. Very common between this and grey plastic hordes in my neck of the woods.

* bare painted - this is slop painted but 3 color minimum. No shading. Sloppy. Wrong colors in wrong area (like splotches of metal on an arm that were never fixed). This is what I consider the default of most players I have ever known that paint (about 35% of the playerbase I've known), and I give them kudos for at least trying because I prefer this over bare plastic.

* tabletop quality. This is where "pro painted" is normally situated and is my painting standard. Looks great from 3 feet away. Won't win contests. Colors are even. Shading is present and some lining exists. Bases are clean and well done. The force looks good, but would flunk out of a golden demon in round 1.

* character quality. This is what I do to my characters. It takes a tabletop quality standard and adds about 3-5 layers to that with lining and additional coloring and attention to detail. The models look great up close but again won't win golden demon or even come close.

* competition quality. This is what most people think of when they hear pro-painted (at least what it should be) but is usually never the case unless you hire a competition painter to put competition time into your models (and then expect a several thousand dollar price tag). These are models that compete and can win painting competitions. They take character level and go to the next level.

GW points don't bring balance. They exist purely for structure. You can get more balance from no points than you do from GW points. You however can get no structure in your game without points. 
   
Made in us
Slaanesh Veteran Marine with Tentacles






For me, well painted means that it is relatively free from mechanical errors. Painting within the lines, based, and enough color to identify wargear from arms length. Anything beyond that is personal preference. Personally, I prefer simplistic or minimalist styles that use strong colors to force/direct the eye's attention. Blanchitsu with minimal weathering is probably the gold standard.
   
Made in ca
Ancient Venerable Black Templar Dreadnought





Canada

Hehe, sorry when I read the title my brain inserted "Well, (it is) painted.", I think that pretty much sums it up.
I think I have struck "Pro-painted" from my language, I find that people I consider pros at painting would not even call their work pro-painted.
I hear "One of my better efforts.", "I took my time.", "I was pleased with the results.", "I was trying something.", all these say to me buy that model now.

I agree with the various levels defined of painting above, I think mine fall in around 8 levels.
My own spin on it especially after looking at a few painting services (and the painting efforts where they stop in order):

- "Primed with colour" is the too frequent definition where the model looks like a mono-colour injection molded playing piece, great for board games.

- "The Minimalist" If you are lucky, a couple details may see another colour.
- "The Shader" This person found their dip/shade/wash/high-contrast paints and are not afraid to use it as their first and last coat.
- "I has an Airbrush" Like the shader, they love a fine gradient and why break that look up with fussy details??

- "Block-Painted" The typical paint by numbers, the part I hate where all you are trying to do is get a "base" colour on each differing detail on the model. Sub-categories of neatly done or going outside of the lines...

- "Table-top quality" is when the block painting is neat (touched up) and at least a passing attempt is made to get all the bits to be the right colour. There is typically some shade, edge highlight or some decals applied to show some level of "doneness" here (not all of these, just some).

- "Table-top with Benefits" Where the person decides to give that extra bit of love for a Sgt or some model where a couple techniques are applied like shade, edge highlights, gradient to make it stand out from the table-top crowd.
- "I has Airbrush Glow", you know who they are. OSL done quickly: spray the general area or used as a rather rough raised area highlight. Looks really striking at first but a bit "gauche".

- "Fancy" Shading is a pretty much standard, panel lines are filled, gem/lens detail, writing on scrolls, glowing objects are made to look such. This is about the point where people actually drill out the barrels on the guns, this is showing a strong love for the look of things.

- "To a Good standard" This is when a painter is in no hurry, they get a 3 stage edge highlight happening, actually, pretty much any colour transition sees 3 or more shades of transition with bright glint in raised corners, This is when people play with NMM or Reverse Zenithal highlights and other more advanced techniques. I tend to see this from those where painting is their preferred part of the hobby. This would be considered "spot-on" in the awesome department.

- "I'm Just Learning" These are the words I hear from the most skilled people in the world in ANYTHING. They make the model look real in miniature, they have the eye such that you need something for scale to put next to the model since the detail is that good. Their painting borders on optical illusion because it almost defies your eye to analyse the techniques used. I love to "hate" seeing these models and it inspires me to get better at it, I may retire by the time I get (or is that if?) to this level.

All of the above I think is both a learning process and where you draw the line when you are fighting with your inner artist and the plain "git-er-dun" need to play with the models.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2019/12/12 15:15:10


A revolution is an idea which has found its bayonets.
Napoleon Bonaparte 
   
Made in gb
Utilizing Careful Highlighting




U.k

I sell models I’ve painted and make a little bit of money from it, I don’t do commissions or anything just paint an army or centre piece model then sell it to fund the hobby. I always list as “well painted”. I consider that bench mark to be painted above basic base, shade and highlight. I think includes layers of highlights and some blending of them to give a finish that is above average. Weathering where appropriate although that is often used to make something look better painted than it is, it can hide a lot of sins.

I try not to big up my painting on listings, I let the pictures tell the story and I take bad pictures so people tend to feed back that they look better in real life which is good. Better than having people disappointed. I see so much garbage sold as “pro-painted” and so many actual pros selling quick airbrushed jobs as if they were greatly skilled masterpieces.

The things I sell tend to be projects I’ve worked on because I love the models or have a themed army I want to paint. I always think I’ll keep them until I actual sell them so they are painted with a passion not just churned out.

It seems to be such a minefield and it appears too many people end paying huge sums mostly because they don’t understand how simple some techniques are and some looks are to achieve so get the wool pulled over their eyes. Thinking they are getting some golden demon winning model when in fact it’s just some bloke with an entry level airbrush and a decent light box and camera set up.
   
Made in gb
Dakka Veteran





To be fair, if the person who painted it is making any money off it, they're a pro-painter. Doesn't necessarily mean they're a good painter.

Take a look at what I've been painting and modelling: https://www.dakkadakka.com/dakkaforum/posts/list/0/725222.page 
   
 
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