You will get there mate, just take your time, reduce your colours and build up tone slowly...easy to say but we all have the same affliction, just to damn impatient!!! It's so easy to get carried away and want to finish a pic but sometimes it's best just to walk away when it's going good and come back the next day....you always see it in a different light. Keep at it my friend you are doing just great, and I like your attitude.
It will come with practice, practice and more practice. Once you get the control of the airbrush down it will all come together. I agree with Cordyk. Build it up in layers and don't go to dark to fast. Sometimes you do just have to put down the airbrush and come back later. I have messed up quite a few pieces by over doing it or getting eager to finish it. Keep at it and it will come. I am still trying to perfect my art and get better control as well! Nice work!
Good attitude bentoad, keep your paint thin and your pressure low, and build up the layers, that'll help you with tone and depth to get that 3D look, when painting on black a lot of your shading can be done by allowing the base colour to show through, and adding more paint in some areas than others will vary the tone. Keep at it, it'll click, and keep plugging away at mitches excercise sheets, they really will pay off in the long run. I know, because not having a clue when I started, I went my own merry way, and when I eventually did some research, had to unlearn a lot of stuff.
ben buddy, you will get it but i think you need a refrence pick to look at while doing this to see how the flame moves. also waterbased paints are hard to do this with, so much that i havent attempted it because i know how tricky it is!! urethanes are much easier to learn this with, plus the real Kandy paint is what makes it pop!! as soon as my competition piece is over i will do a "how i do fire" video, i have had quit a few people ask me to do this so i will. i will try and explain in my terms rather than the majority does it. i will simplify it a good bit.
but you are going about it the right way, practice and you have a great attitude for it!!
As a fellow newbie, I just encourage you to keep at it and take all the advice you're getting here. One thing I noticed, is that the "boring" lines, dots, dagger strokes, and blending lines are a must. Before I work on any project, I take 10-15 minutes and just work on the basics. My paintings have improved a lot over the past couple of months... like even last night as I was finishing up my competition piece, I noticed I was having a hard time getting things right on a particular spot.... when I walked away for a few minutes and came back, I realized I was struggling because I wasn't using basic strokes to build up the shading... Once I realized it was my stubborn "I will make it work the way I want to work" attitude, then it came together like butter. There's a reason why all the experienced folks on here keep encouraging us newbies to get the basics down.
You'll get there though... every piece you paint will be better than the next. Just keep working on those basics no matter how tedious and boring they may seem.
Thanks for the suport. I look at my first work and now and see improvement. I have only been doing this 2 weeks and I should know it will come., but I like instant results and I try to comand it." Forward never straight" bentoad