Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Butcher of Khardov


Here is my latest commission piece. This is my first proper display mini. Everything I've ever painted before has been on a legal gaming base. It was nice to place something on a bigger, more detailed base. The one I chose to use is a resin plinth base from Voodooworx UK, a new company that is the brainchild of Wil Davies (a very good UK painter). I have a few more that I will be using, and I'm very happy with all his designs.

My brief for this job was to take the studio paint scheme, and make it better. Not an easy task!

The full 360 view of the close-ups is on Coolmini here:


Some full view shots are on this page:


Now on to a couple of pics, and the breakdown of how I painted this psychopath.

To start, since the customer wanted a version of the studio scheme, I bought the Khador army book. The painting section of the book is very well done, with very clear step-by-step pics. All I had to do was build on their work.

As usual, I started over a Black undercoat. I like to lay down a basecoat of Sanguine Base when I'm doing Reds. It covers well with two coats, and is a great color to build off of. Normally I would start mixing Khador Red Base into my SB, and slowly start building up lighter layers of color, but I changed my approach for this guy. Since I knew that I would be shading with a deep Blue tone, I just skipped straight to an overall layer of KRB. With a nice solid base of Red to work from, I started adding shadows and highlights.

I came back in with the SB to establish where the shadows would be, and then made a mix of 1-1 SB and Exile Blue. This made a nice Purple tone for shading. For the first set of highlights i went straight to Khador Red Highlight. it's a bit of a jump from the Red to the Orange, but it would all be tied together with some Red Ink glazes at the end. The final edge highlights were a 1-1 mix of KRH and Menoth White Highlight. This made a nice peach color, that would be toned down with the glazes after I painted on the battle damage.

The battle damage is hand painted, with the very tip of my brush. First I painted the chips on with Thamar Black, concentrating mainly on the edges, which would be doing the most bashing in a hand to hand fight. I made sure to get the elbow, knee, and toe armor pretty dinged up, so it looked like he would use these parts of his body when in close. The belly and groin plates where hit with spots that look like he's had a few bullets bounce off as he wades in. The middle of each black spot was given a dot of Greatcoat Grey to add a bit of dimension, and the edges where highlighted with my KRH/MWH mix to match the Red highlights.

The armor was finished off by about ten layers of Red glaze. This is a mix of water and Red Ink, diluted about 15-1. It takes about five layers before you start to see a change, and then it just gets deeper with each layer, and slowly brings all the colors together.

Next I painted his leather pants. They were based with Battlefield Brown, then shaded with pure Thamar Black. Normally I would start mixing in Gun Corps Brown for the highlights, but I wanted to do something a little different, and go for a Red tone. I mixed some Bloodstone into the BB, and just played around until I had a look that I liked. I think I used a ratio of about 1-1.

For the boots, I wanted a different tone completely, so I started with a 1-1 mix of Battlefield Brown and Thamar black. I started highlighting with pure BB, and then finished off the folds and edges with some very thin Gun Corps Brown. To match the chips on the toe armor, I scuffed the boot toes with some Hammerfall Khaki, using a crosshatch pattern.

The coat is done using the instructions in the army book. The first layer is pure Thornwood Green. This is washed with a 1-1 mix of Cryx Bane Base and Battlefield Brown. Then the darkest shadows are painted in with a mix of Umbral Umber and Gnarls Green. I don't actually have the Umber, so I just made some using a 1-1 mix of Thamar Black and BB. The first highlights are a 1-1 mix of Thornwood Green and Traitor Green. The final highlight was this mix with  1-1 mix of Cryx Bane Highlight and Thrall Flesh added in. The I came back with my Umber mix, and nicked up the edges of the coat a little.

Now it was time to tackle the metals. As usual, my steel bits were basecoated with Pig Iron. This was shaded with a mix of Armour Wash, Coal Black, and Exile Blue. I used this wash a few times throughout the different stages, so just play around with a mix until you get something you like. It should have a blue tone, which compliments the blue tone in the red armor's shadows. A layer of GW Boltgun metals is used for the first highlight, followed by a wash of Vallejo Smoke to add a bit of Age to the steel. The final highlight is Vallejo Air Aluminium, which really pops.

The heaviest use of the Vallejo Smoke is on the metal plates around his coat, which I felt would be the dritiest, and most worn metal parts.

The bronze areas are first covered with Battlefield Brown, which makes a nicer base for Golds, Coppers, and Bronzes than Black does. A mix of my vintage 90's Dwarf Bronze and BB, at about 1-1, is used for the basecoat. Pure Dwarf Bronze come next. This is shaded with PP Flesh Wash, which has a nice pruple undertone. For the heavy shading I used my Umber mix. For the highlights I mixed my DB with some VA Aluminium. This is washed with GW Ogryn Flesh Wash to keep the Red/Blue/Purple tones coherent through the whole mini. One final layer of the highlight color finishes everything of.

The blood was stippled on in a few layers. First I used Sanguine base to lay out where i wanted the blood to go. It was the stipple with some Skorne Red, foloowed by Khador Red Base, and then finally some SB mixed with a spot of Black to tone it all down a little, and make it a little more gory.

I did the simple wood grain pattern on the shotgun with a base of Battlefield Brown. Then I painted fine lines of Thamar Black, and highlighted my BB lines with pure Gun Corps Brown. Simple, but effective.

The leather holster, belt, and front straps were done with the same exact colors as the wood, just with Gun Corps Brown as the dominant color.

Next I painted the Black bits. The first highlight was pure Coal black. The next was a 1-1 mix of CB and Underbelly Blue. The final highlight was a 1-2 mix of CB and UB.

For the fur, I wanted to try something new. I didn't want to just have White fur with Grey shadows. I wanted to liven it up a bit. I started with a basecoat of Greatcoat Grey, which has a nice blue tone to it. Everything but the deep shadows were then given a coat of pure Trollblood Base. At this point, the fur was basically turquoise, and I thought I was crazy. Then I started mixing in Some Trollblood Highlight at 1-2, and had a nice color to work with. Next I picked out every tuft with pure TH. A light wash of TB later, and there was some nice contrast and interesting tones goin' on. A final overall highlight with 1-1 TH and Morrow White did the job. This was finished with some pure White to reinforce the overhead lighting.

Now I was ready to paint the head. First coat, as always is some Battlefield Brown, followed by Khardic Flesh. The first highlights of Midlund Flesh were painted, and then two seperate washes were added. The first was Thornwood Green, and the second was Skorne Red. At this point, I was following the book, but the customer wanted a Red face, that looked like he was workin' hard. I highlighted all the way up to Ryn Flesh, and then came back with some very thin glazes of Skorne Red to tint the face.

The stubble on his head is a 1-1 mix of Greatcoat Grey and Khardic Flesh. The teeth are Menoth White Highlight, the tongue is Sanguine Highlight, and the eyes are MWH with a Black dot.

The Kommander rank badge on his chest was freehanded on with Heartfire, followed by Cygnus yellow, and finished with a 1-1 mix of CY and White. Any little mistakes were cleaned up with Skorne Red, which also provided a bit of an outline. It's a tiny space though!

Finally, the customer wanted a furnace glow in his boiler. It was done with progressive layers, starting with Sanguine Base, followed by Skorne Red, Khador Red Base, Heartfire, Cygnus Yellow, 1-1 CY and White, and finished with pure White in the grill. I stopped at CY on the exhausts, so the light looked deeper down, and then hit them with mu Umber mix for a bit of soot around the pipes.

That's about it. I hope that this has answered any questions about what colors I used.

Thanks for taking the time to read this.

I'm off to start the next job now, the Tyrant Xerxis!