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40k Hobby- Bringing Chaos Back & Painting Yellow!

5 Minute Read
Aug 30 2011

Hey guys, MBG here with a little heretical walk down memory lane. Remember when Chaos Space Marines were cool?

I remember the dark skies, the smell of brimstone and death hanging high almost as if to linger in the air.  The year was 2003, the Chaos Space Marines were on the warpath, and it was good to be bad.

Nowadays while the skies have cooled with the times (and their abomination of a “5th Edition” codex published a year before the new rules set was even released), the chaos miniatures are still spectacular.  Mix in all the up-armor kits from Forge World, and they are easily some of the best minis around.

So what’s a follower of the Dark Gods of miniatures to do? If the portents are to be believed, there is much in store for Chaos in the next year (along with the rumored end of the world as well- coincidence I think not).


Ahem… In lieu of playing Chaos by using their book competitively I’ve made a few “counts” as models (checkout “Vulkan” on left), and had some fun with that, but my dark heart still aches to steer them to victory on the table top. I feel hollow and need something to fill the void.

So for now loyal subjects of Chaos, we must bide out time until we can once again rise to the top of the 40k heap, and claim our top tier throne from the followers of the corpse god.

Of course what better way is there to do that then to get caught up on all our Chaotic painting projects before we have to buy more models to paint?

Checkout how I made the Iron Warriors come to life.


First off I knew that I would be using yellow to tie the whole army together color wise. Regrettably back in the old days there was no foundation paints, just tons and tons of coats of watered down golden yellow. Meh, you kids nowadays with all your new fangled paints and washes got it easy, lol.

I had also lucked out and had a few cans of the old spray bolt gun metal primer to use as well. These days you can use Plate Metal from Army Painter, and watered down Devlin Mud as a wash.

To kick this thing off I sprayed Plate Metal primer, and wash the model with Devlin Mud. I cut the wash a little with some water and future floor wax to make it flow better.

Next up I paint the trim with Brazen Brass (Vallejo: Brassy Brass), and glaze that (thicker wash almost in between an ink and a wash) with the old Chestnut Ink. Let that dry and then highlight the brass with a 50/50 mix of Brassy and Mithiril silver.

Use Mithril to make highlights for all your metals, because it is the base they use to make each metal to begin with, so it’s in each metal color already!

Then I portion off some sections to be Black, to provide a contrast to the metal and yellows. I highlight those first with a 75/25 mix of Shadow Grey and Black, and then work it up to 50/50 and then just straight Shadow Grey.

Finally comes the hardest, most time consuming part, painting yellow. (or even worse yellow chevrons / hazard stripes). First I black out the area (again with Chaos Black), and then use a pencil to draw my lines in approximately.  Next I use slightly watered down Iyanden Darksun (YAH Foundations) to line in the marks. Obviously you’re going to stray into the black, but that’s easy to clean up cause black is darker than yellow silly.


After Iyanden I switch to Golden Yellow, and base over that completely, then use a 50/50 mix of Golden and Bad Moon on about half of that previous base-coat.  I add a little more Bad Moon to that mix and split that last highlight now, so you have about 3 degrees of layered highlights showing (remember to highlight towards the tops of your models too, like where the light would be coming from naturally- which of course is debatable being Chaos and all… but stay with me here).

Last is just a small line/  gradient of bad moon on the top of the last ones.  For a shoulder pad this is enough, but for something like a tank, you’ll have to go a bit higher with some white in the mix to spread it out sufficiently.

Now just go back trim up your stripes with a crisp line of black. Remember to pull the paint towards you for better control of your line. One slip up and its back to doing four more shades of yellow…. meh. After you tighten up your lines just use an eraser to clean up the marks, if any, that are showing from the pencil still.

From there you can just do eyes, and bases however you want, the majority of the work should be done at this point. Plus after all that painting yellow, and still seeing the chevrons when you close your eyes (like you stared at the sun for too long), it’s time to take a break.

What do you think? Do you like my sexy yellows, do you?

Author: Robert B
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