This guy was a lot of fun to paint and yet a complete pain at the same time. Come see why!
This model was the culmination of several other painting projects. What do I mean by that? Well, I don’t think I would be nearly as good at painting the blue if I hadn’t worked on my Astral Claw Sternguard beforehand. Same with the gold. I learned a lot on how to handle those colors from my Marines. Angron didn’t hurt either, since I had to teach myself the best way to use colored glazes to enhance the gold and brass when I painted him.
I painted the gold using Gehenna’s Gold as my main color with Balthasar Gold acting as the basecoat and darker recesses. I also used a good amount of Lahmian Medium in my washes to get a much subtler effect. I will probably do a step by step tutorial in the future the next time I paint this much gold. A quick break down is Balthasar, washed with an Agrax/Lahmian Medium mix. This was then layered with Gehenna’s and highlighted up by mixing in Runefang Steel. I also used glazes of Reikland Fleshshade and Leviathan Purple (the old GW purple wash) on parts of it to add more dimension and variety to the gold. The areas that had a “hammered” texture on them got a few more glazes then the rest to make them stand out more.
I wanted to make sure his cloak looked just as good as the rest of him. With something this textured and metallic the tendency is to rely on a drybrush to do most of the work for you. Instead I highlighted and shaded each individual scale. It’s safe to say it took me awhile. I went for a blue tinge on it as well to give it that magical quality it deserves. The folds in the cloak made me pause for a moment as I tried to figure out the best way to shade them without destroying all my highlighting there. In the end I opted for a thicker wash of blue to keep that ethereal look but still give it deeper shadows.
I really like painting blonde hair since it’s not something you see done very often. Usually when you see blonde hair on a model it tends to turn out more yellow then it would in real life. I found a guide in an old White Dwarf that taught me my current method. It’s basically two colors, the old GW Desert Yellow and Ushabti Bone. I don’t know what I’ll do once I run out of Desert Yellow.
The hammer was the biggest pain for me. I originally wanted to paint it like it was glowing, similar to the new Karl Franz artwork in the Glottkin book. I painted once and was so unhappy with it I didn’t even share any of the pictures with anyone. After stripping the paint off the hammer I painted it again, with a slightly toned down glow. I thought I could make it work and I messed around with it for a few days.
You can see that I even painted the glow on the rest of the model. In the end I just wasn’t happy with it. It was bringing down the quality of the whole model so I stripped it for a second time and painted it again, this time with no glow. That also meant I had to go back and repaint all of the areas on him that had a glow effect already. It took a lot more time to keep redoing it, but in the end it was worth the effort. I am very happy with how he turned out and if I had just left it as is I would never have been happy with it.
His base was fun to experiment with as well. I wanted to do something foresty since I have been doing so much sand and snow lately. I had the clump foliage and grass clumps but wanted leaf scatter as well. Secret Weapon Miniatures make some great leaves to use on bases, but I didn’t want to wait a week or two to get it in. My solution was oregano. I ground it up and sprinkled it on the base. While it doesn’t look like leaves, it certainly looks like the random vegetation you would find on a forest flow. Cheap and he smells great.
He also helped refine my photography and hopefully now I will be getting quicker at taking pictures of my models. It’s all about learning how to use what equipment you have to the best of its ability. The black backgrounds are great for more dramatic photos while the white really shows off the colors and paint job. They both require a different amount of lights and set up, but together I think they really show off the model.
Valten is already up on Cool Mini or Not so make sure you vote for him.
I have my new video for him as well. You may also notice the awesome music accompanying Valten. It has been graciously provided by none other then Adam Harvey, the composer from the Ultramarines movie and The Lord Inquisitor. You can follow him on his Facebook.
If you would like to see these projects come together as I work on them be sure to register on the Mengel Miniatures Forum and follow me on Twitter. I post progress shots on both spots and go into more detail on them on the Forum.
Are there any old models you have had laying around that have just been begging to be painted?