How to find your way through the wreckage

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Sunday, 27 April 2014

Painting: Skaven - Isle of Blood

Skaven painting process and end results

As with some of the painting processes I have posted this will break down into steps how I went about painting the majority of the Skaven from the Isle of Blood box set. At the end I have included completed pictures of the army. (Disclaimer: as usual this is no master painting class, this is simply some pictures of how I went about the painting)

Step 0 - Assemble and Undercoat

These models are very simple to assemble. For the Isle of Blood models it is simply a matter of clipping them from the sprues, scraping off cast lines, slotting the model onto the base and putting a weapon arm on the side. I undercoated these white to allow me a slightly lighter option to painting the flesh without having to re-coat areas in white. This meant I needed to repaint the metal areas black, but this was not a major obstacle.

Step 1 - Magnet on Base

With my increasing exposure to magnets in other projects, the use of magnets on model bases is a fantastic idea for Warhammer. The use of plastic models with magnets their base keeps them stable providing easy movement on and off the battlefield. You will need to also have magnetic material on the unit base for this to work.

Step 2- Painting the Base

Painting the base first really helps me to pull the colours together to figure out what I will be painting. It also sets the overall look of the army. Be it on rolling green fields, sandy deserts, or snowy heights a good base colour will help tie the look of an army together. I have gone for brown here as I want to emphasise the dirty, underground nature of the Skaven.

Step 3 - Flesh and Fur

At this step the first base layer of flesh colour and fur is put on. This should be the darkest flesh you will use. It will be layered and highlighted in later steps. Ideally you want slightly separate colours for your flesh and fur to help distinguish the fur at the end.

Step 4 - Painting wooden bits

This is simply a painting process step. There is nothing too important other than deciding if you will have metal poles for weapons, shield etc. If so, skip to the next step.

Step 5 - Blacken the parts for metal paint

In order to use the least amount of metallic paint you need them to be painted onto a darkened area. As the model was undercoated white I went back and placed a layer of black onto those areas I wanted to paint the metals.

Step 6 - Major cloth areas

While waiting for the blackened areas to dry we can move onto painting the large cloth areas. This is a very important step as there is enough variety in the models that you can have a field day painting lots of colours. This can be effective however may result in a slightly 'chaotic' looking rabble (maybe what you are working towards). I chose two major colour groups and used these to tie both of my separate Clanrat units together.

Step 7 - Metals

 The metals I used where the warplock bronze. I didn't want the army to look too shiny or well taken care of. Basically I wanted it to look like it had been forged underground by ratmen intent on killing all the Skaven-like. The use of silver as well on other armour areas can be used to highlight against the bronze.

Step 8 - Flesh and Fur layer 2, Bone and Belts

Here we start adding additional detail to the model. The second colour layer goes onto the raised flesh and fur areas in a slightly lighter colour. After this we pick out the bony spikes, and belts, paper ribbons etc.

Step 9 - Washes

I am no expert painter and I am happy to take advantage of any cheap trick I can. In this case it is using washes to blend the base and layer colours together across the flesh, fur, and cloth. This helps darken the colours and allow for an accented highlight on edges if required. When painting lots of models, washes make I very easy to paint flesh areas (very important when painting lots of the same model).

Step 10 - Tidy Up, Fine Details, Eyes

At this point it is a once over with the colours to tidy up overruns and make paint lines cleaner. Also god to pick out the eyes and any extra highlights required.


End results

So firstly I always pick a test subject to go through the complete process to make sure it will work. After that I can start batching models through the steps. Here is the result of the second test which is what I ended up going with. As you can tell it does not have all the detail, but it gives the overall look of how they will turn out.

I have also included here the photos of the specialist units in the army and the characters. For the large part they followed a similar process however as they are individuals a lot more attention was paid to them. (Apologies for the dates in some of the photos)




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