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Category Archives: Tutorials

Typhus (6) – painting white + using spot colours

Deus – Via

 

White can be an awkward colour to paint. So a step by step guide – plus, a bit about spot colours.

Colours needed:

 

Base – Earth + Fenrisian Grey (1:1):

 

Wash all over with USA Olive Brown:

 

Wash the recesses with Smoke:

 

Layer – Earth + Fenrisian Grey (1:1):

Add white to the above mix:

Add more white to the mix:

I avoided taking this up to pure white, as the helmet should be the focal point of the model – and so needs to be slightly lighter in colour than any other white areas.

It also looked a bit clean for an ancient set of bandages – so I shaded them down, with washes of brown/ochre:

 

I thought painting it up as a regular scythe looked slightly bland – so I turned it into a deamonic weapon. Painting the wooden area up as flesh; with eyes on one side of the handle:

And an unhealthy green glow on the reverse:

 

White was the spot colour on this model. But it kind of involved breaking the rules, really.

A spot colour is intended to make the model look more distinct, by contrasting with the main colours of a paint scheme – which usually compliment each other.

However, in this case, that was the green armour and the fleshy pink – which are polar opposites. So white was a neutral shade, falling between the two.

It’s usually best to imagine a triangle shape before placing the spot colour – such as the head, and the two hands. In this case, it was the helmet, the skull, and the bandages on the scythe.

It’s not life-changing information – but it may prove helpful, when planning-out painting in the future.

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Typhus (4) – painting death guard armour

Green colours tend to be either warm (highlighted by adding yellow) or cold (add white).

I used a cold shade on Typhus – partly so it would remain consistent with the other death guard army models; but also because it would act as a contrast for weathering.

 

Paints used:

 

Basecoat – Loren Forest:

 

Shade – wash with black + smoke:

 

Layer – Loren Forest + a small amount of the black /smoke mix:

Adding black/smoke doesn’t make a huge difference – but it creates a smoother transition between layers.

 

Layer – Loren Forest + Death Guard Green:

 

Layer – pure Death Guard Green:

 

Wash – I used a thin layer of smoke to redefine the armour here. It’s not strictly necessary, but I find it helpful:

 

Layer: Death Guard Green + Nurgling Green:

 

Because Nurgling Green contains a fair amount of white, it leads to a slightly chalky effect – as can be seen on the underside of the arm:

But this is helpful – as the splotches and marks will serve as a guide for painting damage.

 

Paint scratches/chips with black+ smoke:

 

Highlight the edges of the armour and the damage with Nurgling Green. On the largest chips, use Nurgling Green + White:

 

Glaze over all the armour with Olive Green:

 

Glaze around the recesses with a dark purple (black + burnt cadmium red + xereus purple + smoke), and inside the recesses with a lighter version of the mix (i.e. omit black):

I thought this added a bruising effect.

 

Apply a final glaze over all of the armour with a yellow-ochre colour – I used leather brown, as I didn’t want the armour to look too warm:

If you find that glazing results in unwanted patches, stipple over these gently with Death Guard Green – which will blend them into the surrounding area.

If the edges lose their definition, re-highlight with Nurgling Green.

 

When glazing, I used a gel medium:

This is not vital, but it does make the paint easier to control on a model which is as curved and heavily recessed as Typhus. 

Typhus (3) – basecoating!

New Order – Procession 

 

Basecoating is not the most enjoyable stage of painting; but it’s the foundation of the finished miniature. So it’s worth being thorough.

Rather than use this post to go through paint recipes, I thought it would be more helpful to discuss some general guidelines for painting complex miniatures.

Before you begin, I would recommend investing in a notebook, to keep a record of any paints used – because it’s easy to forget. You can also use the pad to sketch out freehand designs; or jot down ideas for bases.

It’s also worth using different kinds of brushes, for various painting tasks:

From top to bottom:

  • Old brushes, with splayed bristles – used for stippling or drybrushing.
  • New Winsor & Newton Series 7 brushes, which are used for fine detail.
  • Cheap brushes, which are used for painting larger areas; or applying washes and glazes.
  • Another cheap brush, with flat bristles – which is used to paint large, flat areas/ drybrushing. I mainly use this for painting textured areas on bases.

 

And as a final preparatory stage…planning your colour scheme. This is not vital – because if something ends up looking wrong, you can always paint over it. But it is worthwhile giving some thought to it, before you begin painting.

A bit of research – or even the colour schemes suggested by Games Workshop – are good places to start, if you’re stuck for inspiration.

These were the colours I used, but I will go through them in more detail at a later date:

 

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As always, the golden rule is to thin your paints: several diluted layers of paint are usually better than one heavy application.

But how thin? There isn’t really a definitive answer. Paints themselves vary in density – and sometimes don’t need to be thinned down: for example, when drybrushing.

As a rough guide though, I recommend a paint-to-water ratio of at least 2 parts paint to 1 part water. I mainly use paint of that thickness when applying the first layer – but then thin it slightly for successive layers; so it has a ratio of 2:2.

It needs to be watered-down further for washes (c. 1 part paint to 4 parts water), and at its thinnest for glazes (c. 1:8).

I can’t make diagrams, but I’ve demonstrated this below:

From left to bottom-right (ignore the top-right splotch of paint):

  • Undiluted paint
  • Paint thinned with water (2:1)
  • Paint thinned with water (2:2)
  • Wash (1: 4)
  • Glaze (1: 8)

Ultimately, it requires trial and error: if paint is too thick, it obscures details, and looks rough. If it’s too thin, it runs uncontrollably – and will require inordinate layers, if you want to create a solid coat.

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When applying basecoats, I start with the largest area; which was the armour here:

It usually takes 3-4 thin layers of paint, before it looks opaque.

I find it best to complete sections one at a time (e.g. an arm) rather than trying to finish the whole of the armour at once – otherwise it feels like you’re getting nowhere.

I would also recommend viewing the model from multiple angles, to make sure you haven’t missed any parts:

As you can see, the underside of the model’s right arm looks a bit patchy, and required more layers of paint.

When the bascoat colours are done, you can get a clear picture of what the finished model will be like (I know it looks as if Typhus is wearing brown shoes here – bear with me):

As before, really, it’s best to double-check/tidy-up the model at this stage.

Once you’re happy with it, apply an all-over wash of black+brown, in several thin layers:

This adds shading – but for present purposes, it brings out details; which makes it much easier to paint them later.

Before:

After:

Ensure each wash has dried before adding another layer, though – otherwise it will remove any paint which is still wet. Extra attention is sometimes required for deeper recesses (like underneath the shoulder plates).

You may get a pooling effect in places – if so, just leave these to dry; as they can be painted over during subsequent stages.

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Once all of this is complete, you can focus on the individual aspects of a model – I will go through these in the upcoming posts.

Typhus (2) – prepping miniatures

Tad ‘plague years’ 

 

The Typhus model is very elaborate, so it’s best to start by reading through the assembly instructions before removing any pieces from their sprues. Kits like this are easily botched, otherwise.

Once parts have been snipped off, they invariably have mould-lines and unwanted bits of plastic sprue still attached to them. These need scraping away with a craft knife, and filing down carefully with a needle file:

It’s virtually impossible to get rid of these entirely – it shouldn’t matter too much, though; as any which really can’t be removed can be painted up as battle-damage.

Typhus is also a fiddly model to construct – if its glued together at this stage, some details would be unreachable with a paintbrush. Which is why it is helpful to test-fit the pieces, using blu-tack:

 

As you can see, the swarm of flies obscures most of the model’s back:

I left the flies off, for the time-being. Paint makes plastic glue ineffective; so I placed blu-tack over the parts which will need gluing, and had to remain free from the spray paint, when undercoating the miniature:

Once you’ve found the areas which are likely to be obscured, you can glue the rest together; and leave it to cure. With plastic glue, it’s best to leave it overnight.

I also drilled a hole in the foot, so that a piece of wire can be inserted later – meaning the model can be held easily while being painted:

You can buy fancy painting handles, but it’s easy enough to make your own by super-gluing corks to old plastic bases:

This is the patented Hull Warhammer & Stuff deluxe version – featuring a natural texture, for an enjoyable finger-hold experience. It can be placed upright or horizontal, for ease of storage:

Anyway, before undercoating the model, wash it in warm water with a small amount of shampoo added; and leave the pieces to dry on a piece of kitchen towel:

It can then be undercoated:

 

And attached to the cork:

 

Ready to paint.

Painting Character Models – Typhus: Herald of Nurgle

CoastDream – Soft Moon

This series of posts will go through the steps of painting character models – building on the methods and techniques used to paint the death guard army, last year.

Because special characters tend to be centerpiece miniatures, they benefit from more detail and attention than rank and file figures require.

It also aids their characterization to create thematic bases.

So, over the next few posts, I will cover these aspects. From prepping models, to more advanced painting skills – like blending, weathering, and using spot colours.

I will also try to make a tutorial on basing – but I haven’t figured out a design yet.

 

Helpful stuff

 

  • Plastic cutters, for removing bits from sprues.
  • Super glue & plastic glue
  • Pin vice
  • Precision tweezers – mainly for attaching fiddly bits and bobs
  • Craft knife
  • Metal wire
  • File – for removing mould lines

Although this model is plastic, and shouldn’t need any pinning – it can be helpful if you’re going to undertake conversions.

Arco-Flagellant (3) – painting electric flails

Suede ‘electricity’

 

How to paint electric flails – this took a lot of trial and error, so it wasn’t really possible to take work in progress shots; but the basic method is fairly straightforward.

Paints needed:

 

Base: black.

Layer: Caledor Sky.

Paint the area around the power-source (i.e. the wrists), and energy lines: Temple Guard Blue.

Wash: Caledor sky.

Highlight the energy lines: Baharroth blue. Add white, to highlight the lines nearest the power-source, and to paint small sparks/flashes in random places.

Glaze: Royal blue + a small amount of Smoke.

 

 

White paint contains a lot of pigment, so when you add it to the blue it becomes quite chalky. Glazing smooths this out; and also helps to create the impression of an underlying glow.

Arco-Flagellant (2) – painting metal areas

m83 – claudia lewis

 

I wanted the metal areas on the arco-flagellant to look cleaner and brighter than I usually make them.

 

Paints needed

To paint the brass areas

Base: Tin Bitz + Dwarf Bronze + German cam. black brown

Shade: wash with smoke + black

Highlight: 1) Tin Bitz + Dwarf Bronze 2) Dwarf Bronze

Paint chips/cracks: black + brown

Edge highlight: glorious gold

 

 

To paint the steel areas

Base: Gunmetal

Shade: wash with black + smoke

Highlight: 1) Gunmetal + small amount of Tin Bitz 2) gunmetal

Paint chips/cracks: black/brown

Edge highlight: chainmail silver

 

Glazing can add tincture to the metals – in this case, a bit of warmth.

Although it can be tedious, 4-6 thin coats will give a smoother and more consistent effect than 1-2 heavy applications. So:

1) Glaze all metal areas with several thin layers of Seraphim Sepia.

2) Glaze the steel areas with Reikland Flesh.

3) Glaze the brass areas with Druchii violet.

4) Paint the recesses of all metal areas with Agrax Earthshade.

 

I haven’t figured out how to paint the black armour yet; but I will make a step by step guide to painting the electric flails next.