From the painting desk #74 – Efreet sultan

December 13, 2020

Lately, my blogging has been stalling for a very pedestrian reason: miniatures that I would like to show have not yet had their anti-shine varnish over the gloss, so they can’t be photographed. As I like to use spray varnish for that, it would mean setting up the spray booth, which would mean moving my printers and eugh…you get the point. My amazing solution? Show off minis that Iย haven’t gloss varnished. Genius!

I recently bought a second resin printer, this one a Phrozen Sonic Mini 4k. To test it out, I printed a variety of stuff, including this awesome free Efreet Sultan from Roman “gloomyKid” Bevza. I took it as Citadel Contrast practice, and the model is maybe 80-90% done with those alone. I’m now getting the hang of them, and they’re excellent – to the point that I may have provided Santa with some suggestions…

Photo of painted miniature genie

Click for a larger version

Much like the Ghost Archipelago critters shown earlier, this was a chance to paint something different. Having mainly done Hollywood-historical pirates for five years (!!!) now, I’ve really enjoyed doing something new, and I think I’ll keep on doing this. Previously, the lack of time has been a major hurdle: why spend very limited painting time on anything but your main project? Now with the whole global pandemic shutting down everything, there’s more leeway and maybe a need for some mental refreshment too.

As for the mini, I was considering a traditional/Disney’s Aladdin blue colour, but then settled on a fiery red look. Doing a bit of light Wikipedia research, I found the following:

In Islamic folklore the afarit became a class of chthonic spirits, inhabiting the layers of the seven earths, generally ruthless and wicked, formed out of smoke and fire. But despite their negative depictions and affiliation to the nether regions, afarit are not fundamentally evil on a moral plane; they might even carry out God’s purpose. Such obligations can nevertheless be ruthless, such as obligation to blood vengeance and avenging murder. An ifrit can further be bound to a sorcerer, if summoned.

I had this in mind, as I tried to make him look menacing yet not completely evil. The black eyes work well for this in my opinion. I attempted to make the coils of smoke look magical and otherwordly rather than normal smoke, which also enabled me to experiment with wet blending. The result? Not great, not terrible – but promising! I tried to get across the idea that the smoke is coalescing into the efreet, hence turning red near the top. It would benefit from a smoother basecoat, as I currently just paint contrasts over a black basecoat roughly drybrushed with white, and the roughness does show through. For the gemstone I did the whole old school Citadel gem thing, which I think I’ve managed to pull off decently for the first time ever.

For the base I went with my light sand look that I use with my pirate stuff, but threw some rocks in there as well. The idea was to suggest an arid environment, yet also have the model compatible with my pirates in terms of basing. I think I could have blended the smoke effect with the rest of the base a bit better, but didn’t want to spend too much time on it to be honest. At some point I want to put together some Barbary pirates, so this piece will provide that setting a bit more fantasy.


  1. That is a particularly nice paint job. The smoke reads very well visually, which isn’t always the case with models like this.

    I read something about genies/djinn in a fantasy rulebook as a kid (it may have been in the “Dragon Warriors” RPG) that presented them as fairly neutral in outlook rather than evil (or in the Disney case, good). It stuck with me.

    I hate to be a douchebag, but a genie model certainly benefits from having access to a lamp model ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 4 people

    • Thanks Paul! I did try and find a suitable lamp model, but wasn’t successful so far. Then again, the model does have the efreet kind of emerging from the ground, so I decided to go lampless. It is an iconic visual combination though!

      Liked by 3 people

  2. Very nice! ๐Ÿ™‚ All the colours work well for me, particularly the red skin tone! Whereas I’m managing to get my matt varnishing done, I’m not having much luck with getting some nice natural daylight to take photographs in!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks John! I went for a really cheap lightbox and a daylight bulb on my desk lamp, does the trick well enough!

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Very nice mate – tricky to get smoke to look good, but you nailed it!!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Thanks Alex! Contrast magic ๐Ÿ˜€

      Liked by 3 people

  4. Three things.
    Another excellent paint job (seriously envious of your skills!). Unbelievably how smooth those resin prints are, if I had more opportunity for miniature play, I would seriously look at resin) Lastly, you really make me want to look at contrast paints, but I’ve have such bad memories of citadel paints that I just can’t bring myself back to using them.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thanks so much Eric! I definitely recommend giving Contrasts a try – while Citadel has had a fair few duds, their washes and effect paints are top notch.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Very nice painting there.



    Liked by 2 people

  6. Incredible Mikko. Your painting is always been great but you keep on stepping it up. What a great sculpt/print. Iโ€™m glad you went with fiery instead of the disney blue.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks mate, that’s a lovely thing to hear! I do think that with Contrasts, my painting has taken a step forward which is funny, since they’re kind of marketed as a “you don’t need any skills to use these” kind of thing.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I still havenโ€™t mastered contrast paints but to be honest Iโ€™ve only really used them as glazes and/or washes.

        Liked by 2 people

  7. Very nice Mikko! I love having the contrast paints as another tool – and these helped here as the red and the smoke really worked. Evoked memories of this old classic : http://www.miniatures-workshop.com/lostminiswiki/index.php?title=Image:Rp-01-069a.jpg

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Mark! That is a really cool old mini too, love it.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. That is a nicely realised Efreet. Really like the gem, looks great. You achieved a nice transition into the whirlwind. I think it would look equally well with a red glaze over it, then it would transition more directly into the body.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks DNB! I think I need to get me some red glaze, the only red “wash” style paints I have are super pigment-heavy old inks which always tend to end up messy. Diluting the red contrast paints enough would probably work too, come to think of it.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Get yourself some Vallejo glaze medium. I use it all the time. It basically enhances transparency, slightly increases drying time and I think acts a bit like flow aid. Great to do some wet-blending or feathering of edges, too.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I think I actually have some, come to think of it, I think I’ve just sort of forgotten it at the back of the paint bottle rack. Time to dig it out, thanks for the reminder ๐Ÿ˜€


        • It’s good stuff. Only catch is that it can dry a tad satin, but a coat of matte varnish will take care of it.

          Liked by 1 person

        • That’s good to know. I give my minis a blast of matte anyway, so that shouldn’t be an issue.


  9. […] appeal to me, regardless of whether I can shoehorn them into a project. I did it this year with my efreet, and I was really happy doing […]


  10. […] of Persian and Arabian mythology viewed through a pop culture lens. It’s flying carpets, mysterious spirits, and evil sultans galore. This project is very much fantasy. While quite timeless, it’s still […]


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