How I painted wings for a Demon Prince of Nurgle

It must have been in 2008 that I painted two commissioned Chaos Demon Princes of Nurgle in that pre-heresy color scheme (white armor with green decorations). At the time everybody used winged Demon Princes for Warhammer 40.000, so these had to have wings, too. So I used wings from Heresy Miniatures B’hakoth model, converted them and painted in a disgusting Nugle way. But this only started the series of questions how I painted these rotting leathery wings. To avoid responding to every question separately, I created this tutorial showing how to paint wings for a Nurgle Demon Prince.

Photo: How to paint Demon Prince of Nurgle wings - Tutorial

Here’s the first wing. It’s more or less finished, and at this point I decided to take pictures of the process of painting the other wing.

Photo: How to paint Demon Prince of Nurgle wings - Tutorial

Generally I don’t try to analyze or organize thoughts clouding in my head in any logical way… (otherwise I might decide that if I don’t know where to start, I should not start at all ;-))

I prefer to go all ahead instinctively… to keep my thoughts busy (especially to keep my left hemisphere busy, so that it doesn’t disturb the right one :-P) and to start painting… and to hope the rest will be fine somehow.

What I did first was outlining the shape of the „skin” which remained on the wing.

I think it wasn’t a bad choice because in case anything had been wrong, I still could correct it easily, because this light blue color would be easier to cover than red.

Photo: How to paint Demon Prince of Nurgle wings - Tutorial

The blue color is probably a mix of P3 Coal Black + P3 Menoth White Highlight / Vallejo MC Ivory 918 (you can use any of the two alternatives).

The remaining surface was painted with Vallejo MC Woodgrain (transparent) 70828.

Photo: How to paint Demon Prince of Nurgle wings - Tutorial

The next photo shows the wing during application of highlights to the skin:

Photo: How to paint Demon Prince of Nurgle wings - Tutorial

Hmm, I didn’t finish it and I started shading the border between „skin” and „under-skin”.

You can see how unsystematic I was (that proves that the wing was created by Chaos ;-)).

I also added a stich on the „skin”.

Photo: How to paint Demon Prince of Nurgle wings - Tutorial

I returned to highlighting the „skin” and modified my concept for colors.

Even the previous photos shows that I added darker decolorations of a green shade (it’s a glaze of P3 Coal Black + Vallejo Smoke Game Ink). The same color as the skin on the final color of the demon’s arms.

I also added some light blue by highlighting P3 Coal Black with white (P3 Morrow White).

Photo: How to paint Demon Prince of Nurgle wings - Tutorial

That’s more or less what my painting of the demon prince’s wings was like.

Total chaos can sometimes make painting even more enjoyable, and sometimes can only make it more difficult.

This time it was ideologically necessary. 😉

And that’s what the wings looked like in the end (I only painted some chipped paint on the green arrows later.):

Photo: How to paint Demon Prince of Nurgle wings - Tutorial

If you still have any questions or suggestions – feel free to share them in a comment. I’ll try to check them and leave answers.

Enjoy your painting and share your results!

— Ańa

How to paint marble bases

I’ve been asked questions how to paint marble, like on the base of my Space Marines Librarian. As people seem to be interested in explanation of my way of painting marble, here it goes:

How to paint marble

I used VMC 907 „pale greyblue” as my base color.

Photo: How to paint marble bases - Tutorial

I stained the surface with dark stains of wash made from VMC 939 „Smoke”. Beginning of this stage can be seen above, and the final effect – below:

Photo: How to paint marble bases - Tutorial

 

While increasing the intensity of the wash I outline the streaks achieved previously by several layers of wash and make them bolder. I also create a few more streaks:

Photo: How to paint marble bases - Tutorial

Effects of this operation can be seen below, just like thickness of the base color (ie. thinned a lot) which was still used to highlight the palest parts and to emphasize the edges where colors change:

Photo: How to paint marble bases - Tutorial

I painted some veins with the base color

I used wash of VMC 938 „transparent blue” in some places, where my intuition suggested, I created spots. And then I used the same color, but thinned it less, to draw places for next veins.

With a wash of VMC 828 „Wood grain” I stained the surface just as I did before with blue.

Photo: How to paint marble bases - Tutorial

With a thin brush I painted veins – cracks, using a mix of „Smoke” and „Transparent Blue”. It was nearly black, but I didn’t use black as I didn’t want the veins to contrast too much with the rest of the surface.

I emphasized the veins with the base color and the same brush, and I added a few more veins. I also added a few spots in this color.

I was only missing a few darker accents – deeper in the sculpt. But this was done with ground old dry pastels in color of dark browns and the scenic water effect, which I am presenting below. But you will find your own ways of finishing your marble.

Done!

Photo: How to paint marble bases - Tutorial

So that’s the way I painted my slab of marble. Everybody might prefer their own ways, but maybe my method will be useful for you? 🙂

There are many kinds of marble, though. If you are interested, let me know and maybe one day I will be painting another marble base so I can take photos and show you how to deal with different marbles. Or maybe you want to share your ideas?

How to paint NMM chrome – SENMM Wolf Priest tutorial

Maybe the huge hype for SE-NMM and NMM chrome has already passed, but this tutorial is surely still worth publishing. In 2005 I painted a Space Wolves wolf priest and people asked how to paint NMM chrome like the one on that model.

As I was receiving questions about my Wolf Priest and the way I painted him, I spent some time and typed this description for you. Maybe it’s not a typical step-by-step, but it’s the best I could do with the mini already painted and even not having it at home anymore. Enjoy 🙂

Photo: NMM chrome - Tutorial

First steps

After spraying the whole mini black, I applied a layer of white over the kneepads and other elements which were supposed to be chrome.

Fur cloak

I painted the internal side of the fur with Vallejo GC41 „DWARF SKIN”. Then I highlighted its protruding parts and the lower parts where more light falls. I did it by adding more and more Vallejo MC918 „IVORY” to GC41.

I painted the fur to imitate the real wolf skin’s colors and patterns, using Vallejo MC992 „NEUTRAL GREY” near the outer parts (the edges), and Vallejo GC40 „COBRA LEATHER” nearer the center of the surface. When the paints were dry, I washed the cape with very thinned black paint.

Before the wash was dry, I applied another layer of white basecoat onto the parts which I wanted to be painted like chrome.

When the paint dried, I decided to add highlights: I used Vallejo MC907 „PALE GREYBLUE” for that, and with the side of the brush with tiny amount of paint on it I brushed along the whole fur’s surface.

Skulls

I started with basecoating with Vallejo GC40 „COBRA LEATHER” – except for the eyes and deep crevices. For highlighting I kept adding more and more Vallejo MC819 „IRAQUI SAND”. The last color applied was pure MC819.

NMM steel

I painted the steel (or silver) elements with the NMM method. For my basecoat I chose (like I always do) Vallejo MC903 „INTERMEDIATE BLUE”. The shading is done with black paint there, where you don’t need to go overboard with detailing and color transitions. There where I need smooth blending of colors I shade by adding more and more black to the black color. I clean and correct the parts which got messy, and highlight by adding more and more white to the base color. The final highlights are placed with pure white.

NMM gold

I used the same method to paint gold using Vallejo GC40 „COBRA LEATHER” as my basecolor, washing it with Vallejo MC939 „SMOKE”, and then – when the wash was dry – I highlighted with Vallejo MC877 „GOLDBROWN”. Where I wanted sharp highlights I placed dots of white paint.
I think I can omit the part about the grenade? 😉

NMM chrome

I started painting with drawing the horizon on all the chrome elements with Vallejo MC822 „GERMAN BLACK BROWN”. The color of the ‚ground’ reflected in chrome depends on the color of the potential terrain. I decided to mix this basecolor with Vallejo GC40 „COBRA LEATHER” and highlight it by adding Vallejo MC819 „IRAQUI SAND” to the mix. So I painted the reflection of the ground going from the darkest to the lightest color 🙂 and I paint the reflection of the sky in the same way. The upper part was painted with Vallejo GC22 „ULTRA MARINE” (with a slight addition of Vallejo MC807 „OXFORD BLUE” in the darkest part), and then I only highlighted adding more and more white. The sky just over the horizon must be white, just like the edges of the painted part.

The more the surface is leaning toward the ground, the more ground you see in the reflection. On the other hand – if the surface is rather pointing upwards, then you will see more sky than ground in the reflection. The same applies to painting the wolfheads. 🙂

There’s one more thing you need to remember while painting chrome – every ‚tube’ or long round element – regardless on its position – will always have the horizon’s reflection along the ‚axis’ of the element. You can see it on my Liralith (in Hassslefree Miniatures gallery).

Black armour

And now I had to clean up the black armour, which was stained and dirty after the whole painting. I covered it with black paint, and applied the first highlight. It covers the biggest part of the surface, and every next highlight is placed on smaller and smaller surfaces. But I think it’s obvious, isn’t it? 😀

I highlighted by adding white, but now I know that it looks good if for the first highlight you add a bit of Vallejo MC807 „OXFORD BLUE” to the black paint, and later you add white not to pur white but to this mix. It’s hard for me to describe where I painted the reflections of light, but for sure they were placed on the edges, and protruding parts, but I treated this subject pretty loosely and didn’t care too much for the realism and caring more for the overall effect and composition.

I hope this description contains some of the information you wanted to get, but if something was hard to understand – don’t hesitate and ask me 🙂

Artemis – how I painted the miniature

Artemis was the model which won me the Femme Fatale II contest. Painting it was a big challenge for me – because of the scale and several problems I encountered. You can read about my Artemis – how I painted the miniature and what I learned from my problems. Maybe it saves you some trouble?

Introduction

Painting of Artemis was done in the same period when I painted the girl in the eggshell – just one step earlier, but also one step after the
sexy female dwarf from Hasslefree Miniatures. I may be repeating myself, but it all was a lucky coincidence at that time, or maybe I just think it was? Anyway the curtain was removed and I saw a lot of new options.

Photo: Artemis - how I painted the miniature - Tutorial

In addition to this we received some secret knowledge ;-))) acquired during a painting workshop with Jeremie „Bragon” Bonamant by our friend from Poland: Illusionrip. In the same time our website – Chest of Colors – was updated with a tutorial (by Morsi) about painting skin, which made my knowledge (acquired from Mahon and Illusionrip more complete. I learned how to „sculpt” and model shapes with colors, and even how to choose colors suitable for certain effects.

But theory is just theory, and what about practice? The dwarf was easy to improve with glazing, so I wanted to test my abilities even more. And the best model to learn painting skin is a nude model 🙂

Photo: Artemis - how I painted the miniature - Tutorial

My perfect Artermis

Artemis was still a new release, but her potential was already noticed by many painters and in a few days new versions kept popping up. I don’t think anybody will feel surprised or will mind me saying that when I visited CoolMiniOrNot in search of inspiration, I found that my perfect Artemis was already painted. Sometimes you just see a paintjob and already knoiw that it’s the perfect version and nothing better will be done with this miniature, because this is THE right paintjob. This harmony and synthesis of the paintjob and the sculpt – looking as if it was made just for that paintjob.

Of course you should know that I am talking about Fluffy’s (Ali McVey’s) paintjob. And not wanting to create a poor copy of her work, which would be too easy, I treated it as a challenge. The new goal was to find the new image for her, to put some new atmosphere into her. And it was a very difficult thing to do is fighting when you feel you already lost… As if it wasn’t enough that my painting quality was inferior, also the choice of the right mood and image for the miniature…. I hope I at least managed to create the opposite of Fluffy’s version – hers is full of power and strength, it is a real threat for the enemies, and the weapon in Artemis’ hand leaves no doubt. So I created a delicate, gentle version…. I wanted people to think „what this mite is doing here?” after seeing her.

The color scheme also had to be different, so the opposite would be a blonde, and I decided to go into yellows. This also matched the sandy base. And if Fluffy’s work was in warm colors, mine would be colder. And the blue color was added to the palette only when I was looking for a pattern for the shield and I found a painting of a plate decorated with a painting, which I later used as my source of inspiration. I recreated its colors and this decided about the colors of the whole miniature.

Photo: Artemis - how I painted the miniature - Tutorial

Different method

I have to admit it was the first time I wanted to create a general vision of my project before painting. Usually I approach painting pretty spontaneously, and I assume that nothing good was created with thinking alone. So when I have an idea for a part of a miniature – I just start with it, and the rest is created as I go on with painting. This work was an exception. Maybe it was like this because I had to create a totally new idea? When I start painting I usually know what mood I want to achieve and what I want to focus on. Here I was off my usual tracks, so I had to force myself to a different vision, and direct my mind to a new direction, new imagination.

NMM

Having painted the shield I still had no courage to make an attempt of painting the skin, so I started with the helmet. On the female dwarf I tried painting gold NMM without using yellow, and I wanted to change my tried method because my imagination wanted me to take another step forward and try new things. I won’t go into details, because I am to write about Artemis, not the dwarf. The helmet was a continuation of my struggle with the new method. I often read about other people’s methods and after reading I don’t follow their descriptions step-by-step, but am working my own way – only incorporating some ideas into my method. That’s what I did with the gold NMM without using yellow. I still missed the tint of yellow in my transitions, and I felt they are bland and boring.

Photo: Artemis - how I painted the miniature - Tutorial

You may know that Vallejo „Cobra Leather” isn’t as yellow as Citadel Color „Snakebite Leather”. I noticed it and found my own way of achieving the effect: when I paint starting from white to Cobra Leather, I don’t blend the colors, but just apply glazes of Cobra Leather. If it’s too difficult for you, you can try painting the transition with any method of blending but leaving more highlighted space than necessary and then glazing a part of the highlight with Cobra Leather. This way gold is still yellowish and you don’t need any extra color for this. That’s how I painted the helmet and only now I am bold enough to paint a part of a miniature with glazing alone.

Photo: Artemis - How I painted the miniature - Tutorial

Problems with the skin

While painting the skin I noticed that paints were behaving in an odd way.
Overcoming this cost me much effort and stress, and you can still see traces of this fight when you compare the front and the back of the miniature. I started with the front, and I was unable to understand why I keep peeling the previous layers off when applying next layers of paint. 🙁 I was deperate and the effect was like the sediment on the surface of tea which is left for too long. Just as if the brush cracked the surface of previous layers of paint. And it really was what was going on, because I didn’t find out that my usual mix I used for thinning paints does more bad than good this time. I never experienced anything like that before, but I never used paints thinned so much before.

Photo: Artemis - how I painted the miniature - Tutorial

Generally I use a mix of distilled water and floor wax (the mix called „magic wash”) for thinning my paints, and it breaks the surface tension, improves the flow of paints, and makes painting easier. Somewhere halfway during my painting I realized what the problem was and I started using water alone. When you’re painting with glazes you don’t want them to create additional „layers” but to change the color of previous layers. It’s like painting with watercolors, so when you add pure water there’s nothing to crack.

Now it went faster and much neater! I didn’t have any bigger problems with placement of lights and shadows. First I checked their placement by keeping the miniature under a lamp, and then I stubbornly refused to add more contrast. Now I think that it’s this way when somebody doesn’t feel too sure about their abilities in something, that they don’t want to pay too much attention to it. And I am still learning to achieve this strong effect of a model emerging from darkness. It’s another challenge for me, and I am preparing for it.

The Base

But let’s return to Artemis – I think there’s still something I should put in words, something which usually is very controversial and I would like to explain in this article. What I am talking about is the base. I heard many different opinions on this subject. I must confess I didn’t think about it too much because in my imagination it was immediately tied with the whole concept and I couldn’t imagine that Artemis and the base might not create a feeling of integrity. The shape of the column was more important to me than its size, because it just belonged to the subject. Initially I wanted to paint it in a marble pattern, but Mahon told me that the column shouldn’t attract too much attention, as this would distract from the miniature. Probably he was right, so I chose to leave the column almost totally black. I just added a partial pattern and some cracks on the surface, because I couldn’t resist painting such an inspiring block.

Photo: Artemis - how I painted the miniature - Tutorial

Photo: Artemis - how I painted the miniature - Tutorial

Final words

I hope you don’t mind not finding any suggestions as for the order in which I painted the miniature here. Especially in the case of the skin it was simply impossible, because – just as it often happens with the first and unsure steps – my actions were not fully considered and studied, but more chaotic and uncertain…

I wish you prolific painting with no fear of entering unknown regions of this hobby 😉