Howdy. One of my favorite things to see on the table top is alternative paint schemes.
I don’t mean pink Space Wolves, Tony the Tiger Ultramarines or Ronald McDonald’s Chaos legions. What I am talking about are the schemes that tap into that different way of looking at a particular army. For example, the Tranquility pattern Mantis Warriors with their yellow and black splinter armor pattern are a start as are some of the Giger inspired eldar that are coming out of Europe. Check out “Yellow One” on Cool Mini or Not if you have not seen them.
For my part, I had always liked the idea behind the Dark Eldar when they first came out, but the models were soo bad I couldn’t really get myself to buy the models, let alone play them. But with the new release I found an army that a painter could love and still be competitive with.
One of the things that attracted me to the Dark Eldar was the mysterious aspect of them. Striking from out of nowhere, leaving only a few shattered souls left to tell the tale of what happened. What came to my mind was the Fremen from the Herbert series “Dune”. So while GW has seen fit not to include giant sand worms in the codex, they do ride around on their transports terrorizing all who see them.
In keeping with the Dune background I had used as a starting point, I had to come up with something that would be more fluffy than giant worms. Since these guys are quite sinister I wanted something would would work well with predominately brighter colors. What I ultimately came up with was ” The Black Halo”. I would include black 6 pointed halos on all my armor and anything else I could easily work it into.
Now that you know the background, what did I do to get started. I began with a base mix of 5 colors, my base color was GW Tausept Ochre. My shade colors were GW Scorched Brown and GW Bestial Brown mixed equally with GW Dark Flesh. The highlight colors are GW Iyanden Darksun and GW Golden Yellow mixed equally and an ultimate highlight color Vallejo Model Color Sand.
I primed the models using Army Painter colored Primer Desert Yellow. From this I used my airbrush, a Sotar 20/20 and began by airbrushing the entirety of all my vehicles in Tauspet Ochre. Then I began applying the first shade color and then the ultimate shade color. After this the first Highlight and then the ultimate highlight were applied. Lastly I went back over each model with the base color, Tausept Ochre to clean up and even out any glaring overspray or mistakes.
Once my base colors were complete I began on the details. The idea of freehand detailing each and every black halo was not a pleasant prospect. So to simplify things, I developed a template so my halo could be repeated on each vehicle and be uniform across the army. I drew dozens of design til I finally settled on a pattern I liked. I drew the 3 different sized templates on cardboard from a cereal box and then traced them onto paper. I wanted the paper as a disposable template so if it got wrecked, then I could just trace another off the original master.
Using the template I carefully and lightly traced the pattern on the sides of my Venoms. Then I followed the lines with GW Chaos Black and filled in the teeth pattern on the inside of the halo.
The next parts will cover the other details of the models and the gunner.