Sculpting women is a lot harder than sculpting men. Woman have a very standard shape. It is important to get it right or your figure will not look like a woman, but more like a man with breasts. Men on the other hand are pretty much straight up and down, and if you get the legs, arms, and head in about the right place, it's obvious it's a man. For all intents and purposes, this articles starts where the Building simple armatures for sculpting people... article left off.
It's also worth pointing out that there are a few small but major differences between sculpting 28mm figures and 15mm figures. Mostly smoothing, and putty volume. The details are outlined throughout the article.
The other thing that I should point out is that most articles are written by the very same people that need them: beginners. This article is no exception. I have sculpted about 20 of these 15mm figs. That's nothing compared to most professional sculpters who have sculpted thousands of 15mm figs. That being said, this article assumes that you've used greenstuff before, and that you know how to shape it and smooth it, and that you know what tools you like to use. Keep that in mind when you read this article!
Start off with an armature embedded in a cork or whatever you like. Before posing the armature, I find it works well to putty the chest/body and the base. After it cures, it helps keep the legs the right length (they don't pull out by accident) and the body together. Not that this method is assuming that both feet are flat on the ground. if a foot will be off the ground, with maybe only the ball of the foot on the ground, you will have to pull out a little of the leg armature to add length for the foot. Once your putty is cured, it's time to start sculpting:
Did you notice the extra long right arm there? No, it's not a mistake. With 15mm miniatures, it's near impossible to add extensions on to arms for weapons; it's easy to do in 28mm, but not 15mm. I tend to include any weapon armatures on the body armature. So, that extra long right arms will make up the arm and the sword as well.
Now it's time to bulk out the green. To get the womanly shape, add putty to the hips and butt. I also define the legs at this point; the bottom half of the legs are pretty much done with the exception of the feet. Again, make sure everything is smooth here because a lot of it won't be covered up later.
This next step the green is further bulked out. Basically, the body (minus the arms) are done now. The breasts are added, as are the hips at the butt. Not that the breasts are realistically proportioned to the figure, but the hips and butt are slightly over size? The reason for this is that the shape of the female is very important in order to have it be recognizable as a woman. In 15mm it's a lot harder to see small differences in putty depth, so we need a little exaggeration. There is no need to exaggerate the breasts of course, because they take care of themselves (it's the first thing that people look for).
Note here that I am already thinking about where the clothes will be. As a consequence, I didn't bother getting the thighs perfect. I did take the time to make sure the outside of the thighs were well shaped, but not so much the inside and certainly not the size. This is because this will be covered by pants (in this case), and so there isn't a lot of point in doing a lot of work defining a body part that will be covered. Still, everything is smoothed as much as possible, as it will likely be used on the surface.
Once the body parts that won't be covered by the clothes are done, it's time to do the clothes. In the above example, we put a dress on the figure.
So, that's great, but what if you don't want a dress?
Putting on pants an a shirt can be a lot easier than a dress because there is less of the subject's body showing.
That's great, but what about that snazzy cloak there?
Cloaks are an excellent addition to add character to a figure. They are also fun to paint and can be used to cover up a lot of area that would require a lot of work to make it look perfect! They are also pretty easy to add. Note though that cloaks will flow around weapons, shields, and armour, so it is a good idea to have these sculpted before you put the cloak on.
At this point, add a head. For information on adding a head, see the other article I wrote on Sculpting Faces in 15mm. Also, add the extra details if you want them: utility pouches, weapons sheaths, etc.
Then you have th finished figure! She's ready to be burned up at the casting shop :)