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Painting: Magmatrax Tutorial


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#1
Kurgan the Lurker

Kurgan the Lurker

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Some folks have been asking about this tutorial lately. Unfortunately the locations that have previously hosted the article are either currently undergoing a rebuild and as such the file isn't available OR they have the article up but the pictures are missing. So I talked to Vincent yesterday and got the files and write up to post here for those who wanted to see it.

Vincent however is rather busy as he is in the process of moving so I am posting his tutorial for him.

PLEASE NOTE: Kurgan did not paint this in any way shape of form. This work is the sole-production of Boltman. Please send any questions about this to Vincent, AKA Boltman. Kurgan is just posting the tutorial up at Boltmans request.

So without further ado....


Vincent Hudon

"The Making of Magmatrax"


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The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
Kurgan's FaceBook Page

"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
Kurgan's Pile of Shame auctions

#2
Kurgan the Lurker

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Introduction

As I promised when I started the project, should my Juggernaut project prove successful at the Golden Demons, it would be worth writing a tutorial about it. Little did I know this project would eat over 400 hours over 14 weeks. Most of these hours were spent looking at the model, adjusting the pose, revisiting the color scheme, and learning how to paint each element, taking 2-3 attempts for each new thing. I might not taken many step-by-step pictures on how to paint each element as I walking in the dark myself, trying to nail the effect I wanted. And when I did, it was already painted... Within a year of starting the hobby, I went from ďapplying paintĒ to converting and painting a model that would win the 2004 Canadian Slayer Sword. I wasnít half the painter I am now just before I started this project. It was a very long process, but as Jason Richards himself (an amazing Artist and Gentleman) told me at Toronto Gamesday 2004, once you know how to paint certain things, you just do it, itís much faster. This article is therefore meant to be more of a Walkthrough of my endeavors into making a Golden Demon-class model. It is a long read, but true to my form I wanted it to be thorough.

My wish is that this will serve as a source of inspiration to everyone, to demystify the whole Golden Demon elite painting thing. I am not the long time great artist. I wish to inspire other into believing that with a little bit of talent and a LOT of hard work and dedication, it can be achieved. Just undertake a project that's much higher than your current skill. That's the best way to learn and improve. Frankly, the Juggernaut was way over my skills, had I seen the end result beforehand, I would not have believed I could ever paint that. But with frequent questions asked to the resident painters at www.bolterandchainsword.com and my favorite artists at www.coolminiornot.com , I raised my skills, and there is no reason you cannot yourself. Try hard, repaint it as much as you need to get it right, donít just finish your model and hope to improve on the next one. If you really are serious about painting a terrific model, step it up! You wonít learn much by doing your next rank and file trooper which youíve already done before. Challenge yourself! I have no background in arts, so if I did it, you certainly can elevate your skills to the next level too. Iím not a big time Golden Demon artist, Iím the underdog who worked really hard. Magmatrax, Champion of Khorne is the result of 25% talent, 75% hard work. Skill, I believe anyone can improve. The online community helped me learn, now Iím returning the favor.
The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
Kurgan's FaceBook Page

"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
Kurgan's Pile of Shame auctions

#3
Kurgan the Lurker

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The Concept

I wanted to make a Golden Demon-winning model. How? What to do? So I went online, and since I started the hobby Iíve been collecting pictures of fantastic miniatures. What made a winning model? Is there a recipe to winning a Golden Demon? Yes and no. Through reading articles by my favorite artists such as Cyril Abati, Victor Hardy and Allan C, chatting with multiple-GD winners like Mark Mosler (Anthraxus) and even the judges at Gamesday, I determined what were vague guidelines I was going to adhere to.
  • The most valuable thing I discovered is that your entry must be original. Sad to say, your interpretation of a Green Typhus model will have a hard time to score, even if itís magnificently painted, simply because there has been so many submitted already. Donít go for the usual GW color Scheme, and/or convert it to make it a new, never seen model. I wanted my model to stand out, make it something new and different, though clearly identifiable. As Mark Mosler said: ďYou see Magmatrax and the model punches you right in the face!Ē. You donít need flashiness, but an attention-grabber was what I wanted, I wanted people to remember my piece.
  • Not all models are created equal. Though it is true a simple model can win the judges over with the purity of its lines, I feel itís a toss-up when it comes to appeal to the judges. A termagaunt for instance, has less potential than a Tyranid Warrior, but not because bigger is better. Because, in my opinion, the warrior has more potential for you to ďshow offĒ. Of course, you want to make something you like, not what you think the judges will like. However, Iím a fan of the safer tactic, the ďin your face big flashy thingyĒ models that draw attention. This is not to suggest this is the only way, but if your model is impressive and draws attention with the conversion, itís that much less you have to rely on your painting to pull off.
  • Conversion. Make your model your own, make it unique. It doesnít have to be completely redone like my Juggernaut, but the more different the better.
  • Freehand. Incorporate some freehand painting, something to show you can paint without lines and borders. This helps making the model your own, and shows youíve spent effort on it. Magmatrax is not just a Juggernaut, itís the one with the magma scales effect on itís armor. Freehand further personalizes your model.
  • Make it flawless. Iíve heard that sometimes models are very close and often given 1st, 2nd or 3rd based on which has the fewest mistakes. This can be a big time sink, but if you can have someone else scrutinize your model for flaws you might have missed, youíre that much closer.
  • Realistic expectations. Ditch that. If you cannot reach higher than you aim, youíd better aim very high. Think of a great idea, then think about how you would redo it if you had already done it once. Think of other good ideas, then pick your favorite. Make sure itís ambitious. If you donít win, youíll have learned a heck of a lot at least, and end up a much better painter in the end.
  • A friend to consort with goes a long way. Preferably, one who knows painting miniatures. For painting tips and opinions, and support on those long weeks where I was getting a little discouraged, my gratitude goes to Mark Mosler, Multi-winning Golden Demon winner no less. Watch this guy out, I smell a sword in his future too.
I had wanted to paint a Juggernaut, I thought the model had a lot of potential, though let down by a very static pose, and being a difficult sculpt to modify. I thought the Rider was just boring, and could be spiced up too. I wanted to use certain nice bits I had seen, and I had the vision of Archaonís chest piece as a rider on a more dynamic Juggernaut, holding a more prowling posture. This was my basic concept. I bought some Blu-tac (the blue gum used to hang poster), browsed for various suitable bitz and ordered them. Since my skills in sculpting were limited, I was going to use bitz as much as I could before having to resort to sculpting my own. I then discovered that Blu-tac was a dream come true to temporary hold pieces while you work on the posture, so I used plenty of it to get the feel of the model, and see how the parts could be matched.
The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
Kurgan's FaceBook Page

"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
Kurgan's Pile of Shame auctions

#4
Kurgan the Lurker

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The Conversion

The list of bitz I used:
  • Juggernaut model
  • Archaonís Torso
  • Grimgorís left arm (WHFB Orc Warboss)
  • Obliterator legs (the walking version)
  • Berserker Head, shoulderpads
  • Skull Beltbuckle from a regular Chaos marine torso
  • Chaos Champion backpack
  • Ork Choppa arms
  • Marneus Calgarís right Powerfist
  • 8$ Walmart Jewelery chain
  • Old Guitar Strings from a friend
  • A few Skulls from the Unded sprue
  • Round Toothpicks
My workspace:
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Tools I used:
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The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
Kurgan's FaceBook Page

"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
Kurgan's Pile of Shame auctions

#5
Kurgan the Lurker

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Juggernaut conversion

I had never seen much work done with Juggernauts in GD competitions, and now I know why. Though I felt the model had a lot of potential, I realized that the sculpt was horrible, with asymmetric parts, and badly sculpted finer features. I spend many hours just filing away excess and sculpting minor add-ons to try and make the model symmetrical. Even so, some things I couldnít pull off, like how the Juggernautís neck collar has 3 spikes which are not evenly spaced. The collar wasnít actually straight, but that I fixed with GS. The model was not a simple case of cleaning the mold lines, but throughout it all, I still loved the look of the sculpt.

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Archaonís chest turned out a perfect fit, the cape having a curve that married itself with the Juggernautís rear right leg perfectly. The Rider was going to be bigger, but I wanted him to look like is was leaning on the Juggernaut a bit, reeling for the impending jump of the Beast unto itís prey. To accomplish that, the Juggernautís body had to be much lower than usually mounted on itís legs, to keep the Rider low. The front Left leg would have to be cut and a joint added to fit the prowling pose, and complement the cape flowing on the other side. I decided to have the legs angled in a triangular fashion, wider at the base, to help accentuate the feel of the model being grounded and ready to jump. This also made the juggernaut wider and more imposing. The head had to become horizontal to keep with my concept, and at that point I found 2 horns that were just perfectly curved to make the Juggernaut look meaner.

So piece by piece, I would convert a part and return to the blu-tac master assembly to check for fit. Needless to say I had to rebuild the Blue-tac assembly numerous times as it was sagging with each fit check. I started with the legs, first drilling multiple holes in the legs and body, and inserting half a dozen paper clip rods on each of the shoulder joint. With a gob of Green Stuff, I would stick a completed leg to the body, press to give the right angle, and use lots of Blue-tac to hold the position while the GS cured. The front left leg was sawed above the claw, then each part drilled, a continuous brass rod inserted on each side of the new gap, and glued with epoxy. I could then slightly bend the rod to position the claw, having checked rod length before gluing. Once happy, I made a rubber joint-type connection with GS where there was now a new gap, just like the leg joints on a regular Marine model. The 3 remaining legs would simply need to be positioned with paper clips like I did the first one, each time checking that the Obliterator legs I was going to use would fit well in between. This left me with a big ugly surface between the front legs and a gap at the read of the Jugger, between the legs. The front and rear legs were also farther apart that the original model. I came up with the idea of adding fur to cover these areas, which would also tie in with the pelt on Archaonís body. Thanks to Nexusís GS Fur tutorial. I practiced on spare GS, and then sculpted fur on the Juggernaut model, and a handy filler which did not need to be a symmetrical feature, easy to cover large areas of sculpting..

The Rider had to be holding onto the Juggernaut, so I glued in each end of a jewelry chain, which each had a bigger link. I then GSíed a link to the Juggernautís collar. A strand of the chain would be glued on the fur and the Powerfist would then be glued on top, but the other end was left loose, as I wanted it glued inside the clutched fist, to make it look like the rider was holding the chain.

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The head was a lot of work, mainly because the Stock Juggernaut model doesnít have a neck. I cut the neck off, saving the neck collar with 3 spikes to glue back on the body. I then drilled a hole in the body in the middle of the collar, and one at the back of the head underneath the Collar of Khorne on the head. I then used a brass rod (well mine was iron wire) cut to proper size to join head and body. I positioned the head actually lower than the body, to emphasize the prowling pose of the Juggernaut. Again, I would refer to the Blue-tac master assembly time and time again to adjust the position. I epoxy glued the rod in the head, then once dry, made final adjustments and glued the other end of the rod in the body. Next was time to make a neck. Made a few sketches, tried on spare GS, and then put a gob on the neck, working from under the model. I sculpted wires and such, continuing what little was suggested by that very small part of a neck provided with the model. Once dry, I bent Guitar strings to a proper shape, guitar strings being very stiff, I did not have to worry about loosing the shape, and I used GS to attack to the head and the body. I made sure to give the guitar strings a different bend, being more curved on the left side of the Jugger, since that leg was leaning forward, the cables close by were of same length, but restricted in a smaller space. Itís all in the little details. Iíll mention it here, but through the painting process when it became time for the eyes I decided the stock modelís were too small. I therefore cut myself a piece of plastic sprue, drilled only 2 mm through an end and beveled the plastic around it, like this picture shows.

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The slightly spherical tip of the drill bit would make a perfect rivet-type stamp to make bigger eyes out of GS, which I then stuck over the tiny original juggernaut eyes.

Checking with the Obliterator legs, the original saddle was much too small and deep. I simply filled the original gap with GS, and texture the surface like a leather seat, with a diamond-shaped pattern on the sides. I glued on tiny metallic studs made out of cylindrical pewter flash from another model. I made sure to round the surface with a file before each cut was made in the pewter flash rod, to make a better painting surface later on.

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The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
Kurgan's FaceBook Page

"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
Kurgan's Pile of Shame auctions

#6
Kurgan the Lurker

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The Base

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I wanted the Juggernaut standing atop the battelfield, looking at the puny mortals soon to be crushed. I found a natural rock, which size and shape suited my model well. It had a cleavage cut, too, from which I could exploit the recess underneath to show off my previously acquired glowing lava-effect. I had to pin the juggernaut to the rock somehow though, for solidity. I couldnít drill through the rock, but I figured I could add features with Milliput., a two part putty which is more like clay, whereas GS is more plastic. I added gobs of Milliput on the rock to improve itís features and make it match the Juggernautís pose better. I needed an outcrop for the front left leg to stand on. I also needed a little extra thickness for some legs to be able to place pins in the base for solidity between model and base. I did so for both right legs, as the rock was thinner on that side. I pinned the Juggernaut paws, and pressed it in the wet Milliput to leave an imprint, but removed the model, which was going to be painted separately. On the extra putty features, I used a broken piece of cork to press on the putty and make texture to work with in the painting stage.

Later, when the Juggernaut was finished and it was time to paint the base, I went back with some putty to exploit a recess in the rock to make a little pool of lava emptying itself a little lower. (back right side). I also added A few skulls to tie in with Khorne and fill an otherwise simple base. The area I had left untouched in the alcove for lava felt like it could be improved. I decided to simulate bubbling, thick lava, and found that the little ball on the back of a SM where you glue on a backpack was just right for the task. I also used a round plastic ball on a leftover sprue for a bigger bubble, and some rigs cut from a smoke launcher nozzle. The smallest burst bubbles were made with a grenade clip, cut in half thickness-wise. Very small, be sure to hold them down when you cut them, or youíll have them bounce out of your sight and loose them.
The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
Kurgan's FaceBook Page

"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
Kurgan's Pile of Shame auctions

#7
Kurgan the Lurker

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The Champion

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The Champion is where I realized how handy it is to carefully select bitz. I cut off the obliterator legs, and quickly realized that it was a perfect match. On the left side the lag was open outwards, which worked well with my Championís pose, Turned on the left side and holding that Huge axe. The spacing between he obliterator legs was also a very good fit for the Juggernaut width and required no bending. I simply filed off the fleshy bits from the legs, using once again my mighty rotary tool to grind away. I also sculpted treads underneath the boots, in case the GD judges would look.

Now this is where countless checks with blue-tac took place to assert the pose of the champion as each element was gradually glued in. I used the rotary tool to grind away Archaonís shoulder armor, peeping from under the pelt. Starting with the Right shoulder, this was a very long grind and check procedure, until I could fit a complete Berserker shoulderpad. Remember to use a mask, pewter particles are bad for you! I then cut off an Orc arm at the elbow, pinned it in the Torso, and pinned the other end to Marneusí Powerfist, previously drilled between the thumb and fingers to insert the chain form the Juggernautís neck. I also had to cut off the ammo clip form the bolter that was in the way of my Juggernautís right leg. Nothing was glued at this step, just using blue-tac whenever necessary for the parts to hold while I fit them. I went back to the torso and legs, drilling each, and pinning with a piece of rod, cut to length, then glued, and finally bent to appropriate angle. I also drilled a hole in the obliterator legs and glued a paper clip in the saddle. This pin and hole would allow me to pit the champion on the juggernaut at the same place every time I put it on for fit.

Torso and legs now being one, I could glue the right arm on the torso, underneath the shoulderpad with epoxy, and let dry overnight, champion on the juggernaut. Then I worked on sculpting a midsection between torso and legs, and came up with GS trims with studs made in the same fashion as the Juggernautís eyes, to keep them the exact same size.

The left arm was trickier. I knew it was going to be something the viewer looks at instinctively, so it had to be suitably impressive. I oversized the weapon with an Orc knife as the main blade extension, and reversed part of an Orc axe to complete the other side. Since the plastics were thicker than Grimgorís axe, I used greenstuff to ease the transition. Filing down the plastic knife and axe would have lost the facets of the weapons. I added a toothpick tip on top for good spiky measure, and another knife blade at the bottom of the are handle, to make it a handier weapon for a rider to wield. I finally superglued one end of a cheap jewelry chain on the axe head, wrapped it around and brought it down to the bottom of the pole for looks. Now I had chains and fur on both the rider and mount, which helped emphasize the cohesion of the model.

Next was the left shoulderpad. Since there was going to be too much grinding involved, I tried a new approach: only adding the visible part of the shoulderpad. It proved tricky to match to the fur, and in the end, I only used a little bit of a pad, stuck in there with GS which I sculpted the missing parts to smooth the pad with the fur line. I drilled underneath again for a pin to attach the axe arm with. Once the arm was glued (using epoxy and a profusion of blu-tac to hold in place while it dried,) I finished the connection with the body with GS.

The backpack was then stamped on a gob of GS stuck on the back fur, and removed for the GS to dry. A paperclip was used as a pin, but the backpack kept separate for painting.

Finally the head, another focal point. I really liked the Berserker head I used, and didnít feel major conversion was in order. I simply added a few toothpick spikes on the head for a little more cohesion with the Juggernautís spikes. I glued the head in a forward position, and then sculpted a collar our of GS with stamped studs, and that was it!

To this point the complete conversion took about 50 hours.

Posted Image


The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
Kurgan's FaceBook Page

"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
Kurgan's Pile of Shame auctions

#8
Kurgan the Lurker

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Painting Magmatrax

Now was the toughest step for me. I felt more at ease with converting which I enjoy a great deal, and the painting I knew would force me to step it up to live up to the conversion which I was very proud of. I knew I wanted a Magma theme, which would tie in with the rest of my army. Oh yes, this model was going to see battle. Iím too slow a painter to afford painting something that I wonít use afterwards, as I want to get a full sized army finished and play the game which I enjoy. I decide I would go for a cleaner, flashier look for the model, it is a style I like, and quite frankly, it is the only style I had any experience with. The model was Khorne, and thus called for Bone, reds and goldish colors to keep with the ethos. Yet it had to be original and not just another red and gold model, like every other Khorne Berserker. Thatís when I cam up with a "Magma scale" pattern, which would make it original and take care of the Freehand aspect of my entry.

I also wanted to try out Non Metallic Metal (NMM) gold, which I had seen in admiration on other models at CMON. The Sky-Earth NMM was a variant, which really made things shine, and I decided to step in unknown territory and aim for the toughest thing I could. Previously, I had stared at countless examples of models with NMM, asked questions to some of the artists, and began to get a feel of how colors were supposed to be applied on various surfaces to give the impression of shine. My basic color scheme set, I decided to start with the right rear leg of the juggernaut. As it was going to be partially covered with the Riderís cape, I could get some practice in without it showing on the final model. I also decided to change my approach to painting, and concentrate on 1 element at a time, that leg for starters, and fully paint it before I moved to the next element. You get to test a particular effect and see the end result of the color combinations right off, instead of waiting until you finished the entire model and realize you don't like the result.. It also allows you to get more familiar with a region of the model and ensure you tidy up all the little painting flaws.

On with a Chaos black Primer coat, after washing the model with soap! Gets rid of finger oil. My 4/0 sized paintbrush will handle all the main coats and highlights or the red armor, and my trusty 10/0 paintbrush will handle all the detail and NMM.

General Tips
  • I had heard that you should dilute your paint. I somewhat did, but never enough, in perspective. When I realized that properly diluted paint makes smooth transitions in color MUCH easier, it clicked in my head. For this, I prepared a little bottle of dilution water, which is about 15% Future Acrylic Floor Finish and 85% water. More Future made bubbles, and less made a lesser effect. This stuff makes the paint more fluid, it tends to dry less chunky, for smoother transitions. Itís a bit like using dishwashing soap in your ink washes. Breaks surface tension and makes paint application smoother. Whatever I painted, I diluted beforehand on a palette, with at least 1 part water to 2 parts paint. Depending on the technique, It could go to 15 parts water to 1 part paint. More on this later.
  • Use a palette. This was another big discovery for me. I discovered using a piece of plastic to put paint of all the shades I needed for an element. For NMM gold, I did one little trim at a time, with a bit of all the colors I needed on the palette, available to touch up and finish what Iím painting. That opposed to doing all the trim base coats, then take out the next color for next stage, etc. You waste a little more paint, but results are better, and the actual painting is quicker, all colors available right away. Be sure to periodically add dilution water to your paints to slow down the drying on the palette.
  • I used Vallejo Game Color paints, but mostly because I find their bottles smarter. GW paint I find is pretty much as good and have no problem working with it, actually I did when the appropriate color was closer to hand that the VGC container was! VGC has, however, an edge with smaller color pellets in the paint, which makes smooth layering easier. I will use GW color names throughout the article for easier reference, but in fact I painted mostly with VGC. I recommend their Vallejo bottles because they are more suited to dropping a little paint of each color you need on a palette.
  • Donít be afraid to go back and touch-up. I had to do it countless times over, with each new element that needed paint I had to learn how to do it. Skulls (always had a hard time getting the right colors), Fur, Magma effect, spikes and horns, NMM gold, NMM steel/silver, how to paint a chain... Took 300-some hours to paint it all, but now I know how to paint each of these elements, and I could do the whole model in half the time now.

The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
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"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
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#9
Kurgan the Lurker

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Painting the Magma Scales

Using:
  • Chaos black
  • Scab red
  • Red gore
  • Bloody red
  • Blazing orange
  • Golden yellow

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I started off by painting the magma scale on the right hind leg, giving me more freedom to try on an area I could repaint and repaint again as it was going to be partially hidden under the cloak. I started highlighting the armor in red, and then adding a scale pattern, but it looked slightly off, as the lava veins were too similar to the highlighted areas of the armor plate. Ok, letís try something else. I darkened each scale, which improved it. Redefined the lava veins... better. Highlighted the scales a bit, and voilŗ! Finally the effect I wanted. This was going to change a bit as I progressed through the surfaces though, so here is my finally honed technique for the scales:

Basecoat of scab red is in order. I tried to avoid overpainting on the gold trim to be, but no big worry, weíll fix it later. Since the paint is slightly thinned, 2 layers are necessary. Next, I take blood red and draw fairly wide veins intersecting each other, to create scales. The blood red doesnít cover much with one layer, but it doesnít matter at this early stage. Next, a second layer with blazing orange, slightly thinner than the first layer, to leave a little bit of the red on each side of the veins. Still using thinned paint, roughly 30-40% water, if orange didnít cover enough Iíd go back. The orange needs to be covering the scab red fully. Then, only where the veins intersect, a very thinned down golden yellow is applied, at about 50/50 water / paint. The trick is to apply the paint with the paintbrush starting a few millimeters away from the vein intersection and drag your paintbrush toward the intersection, lifting the tip off the surface at the center. Thinned paint will be therefore very thin where you started your stroke, and accumulate where you took it off. Paint will slowly travel down the wet path you made with the brush. With the right dilution, paint will dry with a gradual thickness, giving you a smooth transition from no yellow over orange to almost full coverage of yellow. This will require some practice to get perfect, but a few trials will bear the understanding of this technique, which I will henceforth call ‚Äúwet layering‚Ä?.

Each vein leading to an intersection must get this wet layering of yellow, to give the impression that underneath the scales, there is a hot spot. If you observe real lava, youíll notice that warmer spots are at the center, with brighter colors. The more veins and the more lava around a certain region, the warmer it is kept. The borders of a lava flow are darker, cooled down from exposure to the next medium, air, or rocks for instance.

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Now the scales must be redefined. The blood red and orange has spilled over the original intent, so red gore is reapplied to redefine the perimeter of each scale. Red gore is brighter than scab red, and the color brightening is useful, yet still subtle. Paint should not be more than 20% thinned, as we want it to make a clear and precise line from the lava veins. I also made the scales larger at this point, giving them a slightly more round shape, extending the straight borders further over the veins in a curved fashion, but not avoiding the vein intersections. By now the scales are looking pretty good. The final touch it to manually apply yellow at some of the intersections, reaffirming the presence of the brighter color, but not every intersection; lava is a random pattern, and I found that leaving some intersections a little more orangey than the others helped the effect.

Finally, the shading. This step can be done after the NMM trims are done, as the effect will be a lot more visible then against a black trim. Regardless, hereís what I did. After reading a few precious articles from Cyril and Allan C, I suddenly clicked when I read the mention of ‚Äúcolored water‚Ä?. I wanted to shade the magma scale armor as a whole, darker towards the trims. and any other feature. To this avail, I mixed a very small amount of scab red and black paint (33/67) with a huge amount of thinning water, at a ratio of 15 or 20 to 1. The idea is to end up with tinted water. Itís blackish, but you can still see through it very well. With the 4/0 brush I would apply the watery mix over the magma scales around all the edges to the gold trims. Once dry, there is no apparent change. Letís do a second layer. Once dry, perhaps a hint of darkness shows over that region. Now the trick is to apply more and more thin layers of this colored water, on a successively smaller area, towards where you want it darker, in this case towards the gold trim. This very wet layering uses so little pigment of the paint that the layers you paint on donít show at all, giving a very good transition to darkness. It also helps to bring out the NMM gold features, or any detail surrounded by the darkened area.

It is very important that each layer is given time to dry before applying the next or you will break off the previous layer, and create ‚Äútide lines‚Ä? of darkness which you canít really fix unless you start over. To get a good gradual darkening effect, usually about 10 layers were required. In the end, I thinned down black to about a 60% water to paint mix, and blacklined the magma scale armor plate to separate it from the NMM trim. After the darkening though, it was already pretty dark there, and only a quick stroke with black paint was required to define the surfaces. Note that I did not use inks for this. The benefit is that colored water can be made out of any color, and is less harsh and prone to making tide lines like ink will. In a way, colored water is more forgiving that inks, which would have to be diluted even further.

Whenever the surfaces called for a different type or material, I blacklined it with heavily thinned black paint. Being thinned (with Future floor wax finish), the black paint flows and stays in the lines easier. This gave a crisp clean look to the model, something I am fond of.
The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
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"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
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#10
Kurgan the Lurker

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Painting the Plain Red Armor

Using:
  • Chaos black
  • Scab red
  • Red gore
  • Bloody red
  • Red ink
Over the black basecoat, a thinned down version (35-40% water) of scab red is applied, in the same manner that yellow was dragged on the surface of the veins. Start the paintbrush at the darkest recesses, and drag the paint towards the brightest edge you want. In my case this generally meant starting from the top trims to the bottom ones, away from the overshadowing magma scale armor plating.

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To explain this, lets take the right frontal leg of the juggernaut, right underneath the lava scale plating (leading to the claws). I apply the paint starting up on the leg, and I drag the paint down with the brush towards the claw, using this wet layering technique. Since the paint is diluted about 40% with water, little color will show at the top and more paint will end up at the bottom, this shows even more on a black basecoat. Let it dry a few seconds, and repeat the process. This time, I start putting paint maybe 1 mm below the first layer I just applied. Now this second "wet layer", once dry, won't appear to cover much either, but a little more than the first. I'll apply a third layer, again starting a little below where I started dragging the paint the previous time. Donít be afraid to step out of this procedure, as I did. Sometimes the layer was just too thin, and starting a second layer a little below was premature; Iíd simply do another layer starting wherever I thought the change black/scab red was too drastic.

Now it's time to brighten the color. I'll mixed some red gore in the scab red, re-dilute with water, and apply a new layer of brighter, thinned paint, starting a little below the last scab red layer made, spreading the paint towards the claw once again. I kept this process going, with a couple layers of each color mixes. I used pure scab red, 50/50 mix scab red/red gore, pure red gore, 50/50 mix red gore/blood red, until the last few layers I applied were actually very short, close to the claw, in pure blood red. I actually started with scab red, added some red gore about 50/50, then more and more red gore, then eventually blood red, periodically adding dilution water to keep the mix thin and fresh. The final hilight layer is actually blood red with a touch (10-15%) of skull white. More than that would look too pink. Donít worry about actual color mix quantities, is you apply gradual, thin layers by dragging them towards the brightest regions, youíll end up with the same smooth(er) transition.

How smooth your color transition, or "wet blending", is will depend on how you mastered the art of diluting your paint just right (comes with experience). It will also be better if you use 15 layers throughout the surface instead of 3-4, and the more numerous the shades of red you used along the way, the better. The Juggernaut's leg, for example, was made with 5 different shades of red, done with about 15 layers (3 each roughly). And remember, once done, if a particular region of the transition jumps to a brighter color too quickly for your tastes, use the colored watered technique, with a shade of red that is darker than what you are trying to fix, and apply to gradually darken the area. Be patient though, it takes a lot of layers to make it really smooth, and it has to dry in between. When I could, I would darken a bunch of adjacent areas, and by the time I was done, the first place I darkened had dried up and was ready for another thin layer of colored water.

To help bring out a nicer candyish red, thinned down red ink was applied all over the red armor. I preferred using 2 or 3 layers of thinned ink than a heavy one, because the ink will blur the various shades and diminish the difference in shades you have just applied, which you donít want. Ink is just to give it a tint, mainly to change the blood red color, which is too close to orange for my tastes. It also has the benefit of improving the blending effect. That extra tint, which can also be achieved with any color you thin extremely to ‚Äúcolored water‚Ä? will hide a little bit of the layer transitions.
The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
Kurgan's FaceBook Page

"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
Kurgan's Pile of Shame auctions

#11
Kurgan the Lurker

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Non Metallic Metal Gold (NMM Gold)

Using:
  • Scorched Brown
  • Vermin Brown
  • Leprous Brown
  • Light Yellow #010 from Vallejo Model color range; similar to 50/50 white golden yellow mix
Alright now, the most learning I did here. NMM had stirred amazement, wonder and a certain deal of fright since I first saw the Masterís results. It looked incredible to me, and it looked impossible to achieve. Well my friends, it isnít as hard as it may look. But itís definitely something you should attempt only after getting a good grip of the wet layering described in the red armor portion of this article. I did a lot of searching and observation on this, and here is how I painted my interpretation of NMM gold.

First, there is no perfect way to do it. To each their own color picks. I chose mine from the lists of Bolterandchainsword.comís renowned Commander Y (Tom Shadle) and Mahazael, the Demon Prince Master of coolminiornot.com. There are a variety of colors to pick, and the technique is the same for NMM silver or brass, but youíll have a very hard time achieving results you like unless you have the right colors for the look you wanted. I wanted my NMM to be shiny, bright, to contrast with the darker red armor. Not too sure myself if it would work, I had read that Gold would never reflect perfect white, itís just not in the tint of the metal. Some people would use beige to brighten the brown and make it look gold. Others used yellowish to make the gold shine. I picked a yellowish color, but something between beige and yellow. Too yellow isnít good, as it will look like yellowish metals, not actually gold, which draws itís shades in the browns. If your attempts end up looking yellow, then you are using too much pure yellow, and should stick in the leprous brown color ranger longer before going to light yellow for the final brightening.

Colors set, the next and most important thing is understanding the way light reflects on metallic surfaces. I have no background in arts and therefore lack the proper theory to explain here. I am, however, a very good observer. I spent hours upon hours searching and scrutinizing pictures of well made NMM models, the ones I though had achieved a good reflective effect and caught my eye. Most of the hundred or so pictures I kept were found on coolminiornot.com, from browsing countless high scoring models. I began to get a feel of how reflective surfaces could be painted to mimic reflections and give it a shiny appearance. Itís hard to explain, itís just something you eventually understand, from seeing this type of surface at this particular angle from the light source, painted this way. I can however teach you how each type of reflection was made on Magmatrax, and hints as to which situation calls for which effect, to the best of my humble observations.

Sky-Earth NMM Gold (SENMM)

Certain golden areas are sufficiently large to show off with some shinier gold effect. Or perhaps the area is small but you really want to make it look like itís polished, super reflective gold. Thatís when you use the SENMM technique. The idea is to simulate the reflection of the horizon, where sky and earth meet. Have you ever looked at a shiny chromed hubcap? Pretty much everywhere the car is parked, youíll see a horizon line, be it from sky and earth meeting itself, or another such drastic color transition from dark to light, like the sidewalk and the building behind it. To fool the eye into recognizing the horizon in the distance reflected on the metal, you use this technique.

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I always started with a basecoat of only slightly thinned leprous brown. (20% water). 2 layers would usually suffice, but donít worry if the surface is not perfectly covering the black undercoat, as there will be many more layers applied. Take scorched brown, normally thinned around 1/3 water and paint a horizontal line on the surface. From this starting point, I paint the entire area underneath scorched brown. Next, I use light yellow to paint directly over the horizon line. I can also use this step to even the horizon line made with scorched brown. With this feature as bearings, I then slightly brighten the dark zone under the line. Starting from the very bottom, Iíd use 50/50 thinned vermin brown and apply paint from the bottom, brushing sideways. When the horizon line is high up on the surface, vermin brown wonít be sufficient: the color has to become brighter. A 50/50 mix of vermin brown/leprous will often suffice, but for those really large areas, you might have to bring it to full leprous brown. Next, over the horizon, I would go to the highest area of the surface and paint leprous brown. Then, successively, mixes of leprous and light yellow, 50/50 thinned with water, are layered horizontally. My best advice is to have all 4 browns available on the palette, diluted 50/50 with water each, on your palette. That way you can mix various concentrations of paint for your mixes, which comes particularly important in the leprous/light yellow transition. Put a layer in between leprous and light yellow. If itís too dark, just add more light yellow to the mix on the palette. Too bright? ...well you get the idea. A lot quicker to adjust the layering for a smooth transition. Just remember to add thinning water periodically. And if your horizon line is particularly low, the top color will tend towards vermin brown. But donít go to scorched brown as it confuses the eye which you need to fool into associating dark brown as the earth line. Same with the bottom of the earth zone, donít go to light yellow too much as it is reserved for the sky region.

Now that itís all painted, itís time to ‚Äúhilight‚Ä? the very edges, the rims of the metal surfaces. For this you must remember that the brightest rims are perpendicular to the light source. And as the rims tend to be parallel to the light rays, it reflects less and less of the light. So, if you take the armor shell on top of the hind legs of the Juggernaut, the very top of the gold rim is light yellow, and as the curved line goes down, the very rim goes from light yellow to leprous brown, and then no hilight at all. This also means that the underside trims should get no hilight of such at all, since light is above the metal. However, at the very bottom of the metal trim, a little brightening is in order, with a very thin layer of leprous brown (always thinned) and then an even smaller line of 50/50 mix of leprous and light yellow. This you apply, like the top rims, using the side of your paintbrush, only grazing the edge for a very thin line.

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Knowing how itís done is not enough, you must also know where to do it. In the case of SENMM, your horizon line is the starting point. That starting point should however follow a simple rule. If the surface you are painting is perfectly vertical, then your horizon line should be right in the middle of it. However, if the surface is tilted up a little, then the horizon line should be lower on the surface, the more tilted the lower the horizon. If the surface is tilted down, then the horizon should be higher up. Best way to figure this is to take a mirror and check it out for yourself. If you tilt the mirror up or down, youíll the features reflected in it move down or up, accordingly. In reality, it doesnít take a big angle for the tilted surface to only reflect the sky or the ground. For miniature painting, I found that the horizon line helps to show off reflection, and youíll want to put that horizon in, and only avoid it when the surface is really very tilted.

The cylindrical features are done in the same way, but the horizon line has to be alongside the length of the cylinder for the best effect. Furthermore, to accentuate the drastically curves surface, the scorched and vermin browns are very scarcely found, accentuating more on leprous and light yellow. The horizon therefore goes from scorched to vermin to the normally unused leprous and finally a 50/50 mix of leprous and light yellow.

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The horizon line might not always be horizontal. On curved surfaces, or surfaces tilted both on the vertical and horizontal axis, the horizon may end up diagonal. Magmatraxís waist gold trims are an example. For one thing, on such a small surface, the horizon line ‚Äúhorizontal‚Ä? would be ackward (and too small). Instead, the transition was made vertical, though the light yellow for the sky transition was applied from the top rim, brought down at a slight angle and then continuing at the bottom of the trim towards the backside of the model, in an ‚ÄúS‚Ä? figure. I lack the proper explanation, but in this case, from studying many models, this technique clearly shows the eye that it is a reflective surface.

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NMM Gold trims

Most of the Gold on Magmatrax was simply done as a NMM gold trim. The area is painted in the same fashion as the SENMM areas, color-wise, with the following considerations. Generally speaking, a NMM trim tends to be hilighted in reverse to regular surface, bright at the bottom, and dark at the top (assuming the light is at the top). However, the very top rim is hilighted with your purest, brightest color, light yellow in my case. So I start with a leprous basecoat (2 coats thinned), then scorched brown in the upper part, covered almost entirely with vermin brown. To get my bearings, I would then paint a 50/50 mix of light yellow/leprous brown at the very bottom of the trim, and then blend the colors in between, using strongly thinned mixes ox light yellow and leprous brown, and then vermin/leprous mixes. Your paint should be thinned down 50/50 with water for a better transition.

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To get a good NMM effect, it is essential that your color transition is very smooth; you cannot see layers. To practice, I suggest using very diluted paint, Ĺ to 2/3 water at first, only applying a small amount of diluted paint, and then adding successive layers of various mixes to fill in the color gaps in the transition. As you get familiar with this technique, youíll pull it off with less water in the paint, at a faster rate. The first few trims literally took me hours to do right. But it gave me experience with paint thinning, and amount of paint in the paintbrush required for best application.

Painting the studs had me discover that a simple SENMM technique could be used to great effect. Aiming for the sky, I kept my motto strong: ‚ÄúNo shortcuts, make everything as intricate as possible and go the extra mile, every time‚Ä?. So I decided to paint every last one of the studs (over a hundred in all) scorched brown, and very carefully paint the lower 1/3 leprous brown and the top 1/3, light yellow. Paint was only barely thinned (10%), as the paint needs to stick and cover. Besides, thinned paint on a stud tends to gather around the stud, which is a big no-no. For best results, I made sure to leave a scorched brown lining all around the studs. The biggest studs also got a very, very small touch of pure light yellow thinned down as usual (35-40%) at the very bottom of the stud, leaving most of the leprous brown showing. Small zones of color as such might not seem worth the time, but for the overall piece, even the slightest hints of color will show. Just like the smallest error in color transition will haunt you until you fix it.


NMM Silver/Steel

Using;
  • Fortress grey
  • Codex grey
  • Wolf grey #47 (Vallejo Game color, like Spacewolf grey without the blue hue)
The steel parts were done with the same NMM techniques, over the black undercoat. I unfortunately do not have specific recipes for the various layers, and it is still a color I feel I need to improve on. Part of the problem is that there are no good dark greys out there, you should mix your own in a pot. I didnít, it took longer, and I will for my next project. Basically, re-use the gold technique, however your vermin brown equivalent should be a 50/50 mix of black and Codex grey.

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The chains were done with black basecoat, followed with 50/50 mix of codex/black, covering the entire links but avoiding where the links touch each other, to leave a line. Then a hilight of Fortress grey covering half of each link, brighter towards the light. Finally, a hilight of wolf grey on the top third of each link did the trick. As a reminder, the lava scales, where the chain crosses over, were darkened towards the base, like any other edge of the magma scales, using the colored water technique explained earlier. This helped make the chain stand out. Note that the jewelry chains were glued down to stiffen them. This became essential for the chain hanging from the axe, as otherwise, the swinging motion would break the paint as the links rubbed. To hold it in place, making it much easier to paint, very liquid superglue was applied along the chain, to fuse all the links together.

**EDITORS NOTE: For more info on NMM, see Boltman's Interactive NMM Tutorial**
The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
Kurgan's FaceBook Page

"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
Kurgan's Pile of Shame auctions

#12
Kurgan the Lurker

Kurgan the Lurker

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Horns and Spikes

Using:
  • Scorched brown
  • Vermin brown
  • Leprous brown
  • Bleached bone

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Though the color list is very similar to the gold, in this case, bleached bone used as a brightener changes the final look considerably. Unfortunately, the step by step pictures turned out blurry, youíll have to forgive me for that. I basecoat scorched brown, then start making the spikes with vermin brown, thinned as usual. For this Iíd start at the base, leaving a little ring of basecoat, and paint a spike, usually with 2 strokes from the same starting point, on stroke towards the left, one towards the right. The spikes should be rather fat at this layer. Once youíve gone all around, a second layer of snakebite leather is applied. Start with more thinned down paint this time (40-50% water) and make a slightly thinner spike within the boundaries of the vermin brown spikes. 2 layers might be necessary at this point. Next, a 50/50 mix of snakebite/bleached bone layer is applied, again thinned down 40-50%, and starting the spikes even further, but keeping the with the same. Finally, pure bleached bone is applied to the last half or third of the spikes. Sometimes, when my blending wasnít nice enough, Iíd go back with a very diluted paint mix of snakebite/bleached bone (75% water) and apply a little of this thinned paint on the spikes, where the transition from snakebite to bleached bone was too drastic. A few layers usually did the trick. And to complete the effect, a 80-90% water mix with scorched brown is applied in a couple layers around the base of the spike, to fade in the bone spikes into the darker browns. To top it off, like I did with every change in type of surface, blacklining the transition between horn and gold trim made it pop out and accentuated the clean look of the paintjob. Be sure to use thinned black, with the Future Floor Finish paint will tent to run along the line, making the task easier.

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The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
Kurgan's FaceBook Page

"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
Kurgan's Pile of Shame auctions

#13
Kurgan the Lurker

Kurgan the Lurker

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Skulls

Using:
  • Scorched brown
  • Bestial brown
  • Snakebite leather
  • Bleached bone

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No Self-respecting Khorne Follower struts his stuff around the battlefield without skulls. I had a lot of trouble getting te skulls to look the way I liked. To this day I still feel I have a hard time with skull and bone colors, and particularly the way I paint them. So take my procedure with caution. I wanted to accentuate the shades on the skulls, and have a color that was bone, not yellowish or reddish like the spikes and horns seem to have. I found that substituting vermin brown to bestial brown from the mix actually helped make a more ďdryĒ color effect for the bones. My final technique involved basecoating the skulls scorched brown, then gradually hilighting with Bestial, 50/50 mix of bestial/snakebite, snakebite, 50/50 mix with bleached bone, and finally full bleached bone. Most coats were regularly thinned, saving the heavier thinning of paint for the 50/50 and pure bleached bone coats. Doing so, I made sure to paint around the eye sockets, and the side ďlinesĒ on the forehead very bright to accentuate the bony features of the skulls. Another thing I found helped the look was to highlight the bone structure right over and under the teeth similar the actual teeth, but starting from a bestial/snakebite mix, instead of the darker scorched brown found in between the teeth themselves. This helps create the effect that the teeth are lodged inside the jaws, and the bone structure is only hiding the teeth that emerge. Eye sockets were kept or repainted black at the end.
The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
Kurgan's FaceBook Page

"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
Kurgan's Pile of Shame auctions

#14
Kurgan the Lurker

Kurgan the Lurker

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Juggernaut Eyes & Gems

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The gem technique is probably the only technique I mastered already before undertaking this project. Assuming you are unfamiliar with it, here are my pointers, using the Juggernautís eyes as example. Starting with black undercoat, the lower half is painted in a slightly crescent shaped coat of scab red, thinned normally. Then, the lower third is repainted with a layer of red gore, this time thinned 50%. You might need to coats for the color to show, but for now keep going to get all the colors in. The bottom quarter is then given a heavily thinned coat of blood red, always in a crescent shape that should reach the half point on each side. And even thinner line of blazing orange is applied, thinned of course, and finally a single line of yellow is applied, though thinned normally, to show a little more with one coat.

Now is the time to go back, using the marvel of having all relevant paint on your palette should be quick. With 60-75% thinned down paint mix, reapply thin lines of colors where you feel the transition is not smooth enough. As the paint is very thin, not much will change, but a layer or two should be enough to blend in the colors without creating a new paint line with the paint you just added. After all, that additional line should be transparent a bit, as itís supposed to blend in the colors underneath. In the case of the eyes, youíll notice that I actually did this whole procedure at a tilted angle. I stated the lower half for the sake of keeping the explanation simple, but you should probably consider painting the highlight at an angle too, because the light source is rarely directly over the gem. The final, revealing touch, is made with a little pure skull white dot at the top of the gem. In my case, I made a slightly oval dot with a smaller white dot right underneath it, mimicking multiple light sources.

A few final pointers on the subject. Keep the paint thin, as youíll likely paint and repaint the area until the color transition pleases you. If you donít youíll quickly get a chalky texture, which messes any effect up. I find that deeper-looking gems fool the eye better. A deeper gem should keep black present all round the white dot; no hint of color should be touching the white dot. The color brightening should also start slowly and then brighten faster and faster as you get to the bottom of the gem. In my case, red was dominant, but red turned yellow quickly on the lower quarter crescent.
The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
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"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
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#15
Kurgan the Lurker

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Miscellaneous Champion Details

The rider being a focal point for the viewer, I knew I had to go further and add details. The helmet faceplate was slightly plain. After a careful wet layering job of red on it, using multiple watered down layers like the rest of the red armor, I decided to add ďvisor slitsĒ. As it was too late to carve out the slits, I decided to fool the eye. A carefully painted a black ďspikeĒ, and directly facing the helmet, made a mirror copy on the other cheek. Then, a careful thin line, on the side opposite to the light source was painted, with a blood red/15% skull white, the brightest red I used. You must make sure to keep the width of the black slit and the highlight next to it constant. I suggest you paint the hilight and simply go back with black to make the transition line drastic and very straight. A thin wash of red ink is then applied, to make sure the highlight is kept with the same red hue as the rest of the armor.

The back of the Helmet panels was also subject to fool the eye. Though the front side of those ďearsĒ has god trim, the back doesn. I didníT feel like doing NMM gold all over, and I didnít feel like sculpting trims once more, so I decided to paint it as though there were a gold trim. I started with teh magma pattern, then made a black line fairly wide but very straight next to the magma. I then went through the regular NMM procedure. At the end I made sure to add rim highlights, very thin bright lines to make the trim look like it has depth.

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The flesh arms were done with a slightly different approach. I basecoated dark flesh, then added scorched brown for shadows, normally thinned. Then, for the hilights, I used 50% thinned dwarf flesh,, followed by a 50/50 mix of dwarf flesh/bronzed flesh, and finally a thinned pure bronzed flesh layer. It made for a tanned, more contrasted flesh color, which I thought suited the hardened fighter.

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The red cape was done with the same red armor colors, keeping the paint very thin to help the layering process. To give the ragged cape the impression that is was worn down and burnt, I shaded it black. I did so with a dozen or so applications of black-tinted water mix, first layer being widespread, and the last ones only applied at the very tip. A word of advice here: protect the rest of your model on open-ended features like the cape. I didnít and tiny black water droplets were unfortunately splashed all over the Juggernautís right leg. I had to spend 2 hours touching it up...
The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
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"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
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#16
Kurgan the Lurker

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The Axe

The axe blade I decided to keep within the magma theme and paint scales, similar to the juggernaut armor. This time however, I wanted the effect to look more like a hot piece of molten lava, held at the core with scales, and then stretching into blades, cooling down towards the edges. Just like the magma scales, I started with scab red, then painted the veins with blood red, then orange, then yellow. I kept the veins wider this time around, to show off more lava heat. I then hilighted the scales Ďs entire surface (aside from a thin dark red border), but that didnít look quite right. I then decided that brighter yellow was required, and thus I added Light Yellow. The picture below shows the left side with my first attempt, and teh right side with my revisited concept. The scales were covered with scab red again, and hilighted to blood red on only the borders of each scales facing a top light source. I however kept a thin line of scab red showing, as a form of ďdarkliningĒ around the scales, making them stand out better. The light yellow was only used at the intersection of some of the veins, as the heat isnít necessarily constant through the surface, and this intermittent pattern accentuates the magma pattern.

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The scales stop where the axe blade starts getting thinner towards the edge. To help plan the blending job, I applied a line of each color parallel to the blade edge, darker as you go outwards. I didnít worry about blending the colors in at this stage. With this ďmatrixĒ I could then work on blending the colors in-between, with 50/50 paint/water mixes, diluting being crucial here to keep the final result smooth and flat. The colors, from the magma scales are: Light yellow, golden yellow, blazing orange, blood red, red gore, scab red, 50/50 scab red/black, and pure chaos black on the very edge of the blades. This is another fine example of where using a palette really helps. With all necessary colors out, you can mix various concentrations of intermediate colors, add water and paint on the axe. If youíre quick and looking for an additional challenge, you can try pure blending. This happens when you put a layer of thinned color, say orange, and then next to it you apply a thinned layer of blood red/orange, actually touching the orange line. When both lines are sufficiently wet, the colors will ďblend inĒ together, youíll see them mix together,, so at opposite ends the color is pure orange or blood red, , and as you move towards the interface of those 2 lines, some orange has made itís way into the orange, gradually turning the color over. You can help the blend by putting you paintbrush in there and blend in the two lines a little. The more skilled with this you are, the fewer intermediate blending layers you need to make a full color transition. I heard of artists blending red to black with simply red and black.

Though I had some success with this, but most of my work was made with wet layering and some blending (about 10-15 successive color lines, very thin). Simpler procedure, but very time consuming. My first blade (excluding scales!) took me 3 hours to get to that result. The entire axe head took about 20 hours total. Yes I am slow, but the results are good, and Iím getting quicker with each hour spent practicing. If you want to get better, you have to invest yourself in it. So once this was done, scales hilighted, a colored water wash was layered towards the chains, to darken the area and again, make the chain features stand out.
The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
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"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
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#17
Kurgan the Lurker

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The Fur

Using:
  • Scorched brown
  • Vermin brown
  • Leprous brown
  • Bleached bone
The colors for the fur are teh same as for the horns. My best results came with a basecoat of scorched brown, drybrush of vermin brown, followed with a drybrush of leprous brown. To complete the effect, I carefully applied a 50/50 mix of leprous/bleached bone, 1/3 water thinned as usual. At this stage I painted every little strand of fur, making sure to avoid the strands in the recesses and brighten the top of the folds, to show a certain ďwavynessĒ in the pelt. One more thinned layer of bleached bone, again, dragged from middle of the fur strand to the very tip like I painted the red armor, to help make the layered color transition smoother.

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The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
Kurgan's FaceBook Page

"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
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#18
Kurgan the Lurker

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The Powerfist Freehand

Once everything was painted, I wanted to still kick it an extra notch. Seeing a good opportunity to show the judges I could paint without borders, I decided to paint a skull feature on the fist. I started out with a few concept sketches with paper and pen, and once I had my basic concept, I practiced the features of the skull. I decided I should draw it a bunch of times, always the same way, to get proportions rightly repeated every time. The eyebrows were drawn first, then the cheekbones, teeth, and finally the sides of the skull. That way I knew the V-shaped ďeyebrowsĒ had to start at this point, go up about this half the height of the total surface, and be about a third of the with of the surface. With that V for bearings, I simply added the features. I then practiced a few times on my palette, only making the black lines. Finally, time to put paint on the fist, using my practiced procedure. I blacklined the motif, then added in the reds and eventually replace the black lines with darker reds. Since a red skull on a red Powerfist wonít show much, I outlined the skull with flames, from orange to light yellow.

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For a final touch, I decided to add a Khorne symbol on the forehead. Again, on paper I practiced to get the symbol looking right, starting with an X that is wider at the base than the top, add the horizontal lines, then the vertical at the bottom, and voilŗ. Practiced 3 times with paint on palette, then blood red on the Powerfist. I did it again with orange, then yellow, and finally a hint of light yellow, but only towards the intersection of the lines. Of course thatís more a principle that a fact, as this was getting very small. But thatís the concept, anyhow.
The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
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"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
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#19
Kurgan the Lurker

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The rest of it

The axe shaft was basecoated leprous brown, again 2-3 thinned layers. I chose 2 lines of highest light, one on each side, and painted it light yellow. This will be later covered but serves as bearings for now. Then, at 90 degrees from the light yellow, a scorched brown line is applied (2 in all). At 45 deg. from the light yellow (halfway between yellow and scorched brown), a leprous brown line is applied (4 lines in all). Now, with 50% thinned paint, vermin brown is applied, covering just about all the scorched brown, from each side towards the leprous brown. Using your palette, apply successive mixes of leprous/vermin, 50% thinned, to blend in the color from the pure leprous to pure scorched brown. The same is done from leprous to light yellow. Finally, once happy with the color transition, correcting and re-correcting until the blend was smooth (it sure wasnít on my first try!), then hereís a simply trick I learned from reading Allan Cís articles. Thin down a color, in this case leprous brown, to a point where itís very thin, a bit like darkening the magma scales near the gold trims. Go easier on the thinning this time though, say 1 part paint to 7-8 parts water or so. You then apply this very thin wash over the axe shaft or other such blended surface. This will give all shades of the color the same uniform tint, and will actually help improve the overall smoothness of your blending. This technique works for any surface requiring smooth transition, try using a brighter to darker shade and glaze it over to see the results. Note that I did not use this technique for the NMM gold. That is because this leprous brown tint would spoil the light yellow which needs to be pure to keep the shining effect.

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The Juggernautís neck hoses. I got a lot of compliment for them and they are actually not that hard to pull off. After various attempts, hereís what worked best. Using thinned paint, I start with a basecoat of scorched brown. Next comes a thin line of light yellow, lengthwise, only slightly thinned (20% or so), applied with the side of the bristles of the brush to avoid filling the cracks of the hose, . With the horizon line set, I used vermin brown and brushed sideways to apply under the scorched brown horizon. On the underside of the hoses, leprous brown was brushed on. Try to avoid filling in the cracks, but donít worry too much about it. Over the horizon line, a 50/50 mix of leprous/light yellow, followed by a leprous brown layer, at the very top of the hose. Finally, to help define each coil, brown ink was applied, thinned 75% water (and Future Floor Finish as always). A few applications should have the ink set in all the crevices without darkening the yellow skyline; touch it up if it does.
The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
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"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
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#20
Kurgan the Lurker

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Painting the Lava Base

Using
  • Chaos black
  • Codex grey
  • Fortress grey
  • Wolf grey #47 (Vallejo Game color, like Spacewolf grey without the blue hue)
  • Scab red
  • Red gore
  • Blood red
  • Blazing orange
  • Golden yellow
  • Light yellow #010
  • Skull white

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First off, once the base was basecoated black, I drybrushed Codex grey, then Fortress grey and finally a touch of Wolf grey, emphasizing on the rocky bulges I wanted to define. Next came the lava. Using 2-3 coats each time of thinned paint (35-40% water), I applied scab red all over the untouched plastic base surface. Next came red gore, covering about 95% of the surface. At the blood red stage, I started making a pattern of warmer rivers, branching off. With blazing orange the rivers are getting warmer and the paint more concentrated in central areas. Yellow was then applied as a thin line in the center of all the river branchings, but made wider where the flow was wider or the flows met. Light yellow was then only applied at the warmer regions, where the flows met, in the center. A little bit of 50/50 skull white/water was then blended in the very center of the intersections, making pools of various sizes where the lava is at its hottest. The rings and bubbles were painted by applying thick coats of undiluted yellow around the base, to fill in the interface from bubble to plastic base, and round up the interstice. I did so instead of using Green Stuff as parts of the bubbles was pretty much inaccessible to the tools, whereas paint was simply applied on the bubble and left to sag at the base. From yellow I ďwet layeredĒ light yellow, and finally white on top, making sure to let each layer dry before painting the next. Since the bubbles were rising lava, or gasses trapped under lava, rising up, it was meant to be the warmest of the base, and given the most amount of white.

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The base had been planned to give me an opportunity to show off some light sourcing from the lava, accentuating the hot effect. I actually added some Milliput on the vertical side of the rock within the alcove at this point and purposely made vertical lines and textures with a sculpting tool, to facilitate the lighting effect. I then basecoated the area black again, then started the effect I had practiced on a few previous models before. Hereís how I did it. First I figured out where the light was coming from, which was clearly the 2 bubbles, though the lava as a whole was emitting a hue. Then I figured out which areas of the rock around the light source were directly facing said light sources. These areas would get the most light. So I started by painting the lit up zones with scab red, then red gore, making the zone smaller with each brighter layer. Scab red is painted on, but with red gore I start drybrushing with a good amount of paint a smaller zone within the scab red zone. This drybrush can and will place paint in the crevices, at this point this is alright. Next is a drybrush of the main zones with blazing orange. Youíll notice that I completely skip blood red, as that particular color somehow makes the effect look too much like paint and not enough like light. With the red gore I started making 2 half circles near the bubbles, which I will bring out with a drybrush of orange. Finally, a drybrush of yellow is applied closest to the light source. In my example I may have overdone the light on the crack, but that was to make sure that the light effect would stand out even though itís cooped up in the alcove.

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Once the main zone was done, a little further from the large lit up zone, I painted the same colors on little outcrops of rock, leaving black gaps in between. I found this made it look like a couple rocky outcrops have a directly exposed face to the light, hence they receive reds, oranges and yellows, even though those outcrops arenít really directly facing the light source. With all this done, I glued on a few skulls, added broken horns for flavor and painted them like previously mentioned.


Conclusion

Well, on the slight chance that youíve stayed awake throughout this Tutorial, I thank you for your consideration, and hope youíve leaned all I had to teach... for now. Again, Iíll repeat myself. Aim high, and try hard. Thereís only little you can learn from painting what youíve already done before. Itís in challenging yourself and trying something new that you really elevate your skills. Start with an original idea, something you can physically convert in some way to make it your own. Go the extra mile on everything, and show them your model is not just a nice model, itís that one particular model. Keep touching up, seek advice, and youíre sure to achieve a model youíll be very proud of. Itís possible, with either a lot of skill, or a lot of dedication and hard work like me. Step up to the challenge!

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The Cult of Orange -- None Can Withstand Our Color!
Duck Blind Miniatures - The website has been gone for a long time so I've put up a FaceBook page to show what photos I have left or may add in the future.
Duck Blind Minis IG - I do post on IG too but fair warning there are other things (mostly the gym) on here besides minis.
Kurgan's Twitter Feed
Kurgan's FaceBook Page

"And maybe the Traitor Legions would come to their senses, renounce the Ruinous Powers and return to the light of the Emperor." -- Ciaphis Cain on the likelihood of a Mawloc being scared off by a melta blast.

Selling off the PILE OF SHAME! Links to my ebay page for everything that is going up over the next 10 days:
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#21
Marovingean

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:evil:
Thats all I can say.
Thanks so much! fantastic tutorial! So many useful tips and it mst have taken hours to prepare the tutorial (and the model)

M
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#22
Iacton Qruze

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I loved this piece ever since I saw it on CMON, but I never noticed the powerfist freehand... that's absolutely brilliant :wink:

I'm glad I could finally see this tutorial, as I've wanted to make one similar to it for myself, but didn't know what all the pieces were.


Thanks very much!

#23
Boltman

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Thank you so much Kurgan for taking the time I lack and repost this for the community! :(

For the curious I am moving to another province, new job and all, and in between boxes I'm working on my next GD project (Toronto). This one so far looks promising, I'm experimenting with a lot of new techniques. This year the challenge is real metallics. It's B&C compatible, but it's not in Power Armor... /inscrutable scheming off :wink:


Boltman
My tutorial on Magmatrax, Slayer Sword winner 2004
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Current project: Might try WHFB...

#24
mario

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How about linking to this tutorial here from the FAQ as the original links seems to be broken?

By the way: Would it be an good idea to either link to some of the best internal tutorial articles from the FAQ or to just create one sticky topic in the tutorial section for this? This could include stuff like links to the hundreds of "How to paint colour x?" tutorials. I know there is a search function but it's not as sophisticated as a Google/Yahoo search and an index of good articles could probably remove some of the recurring topic (mostly new users, but sometimes people who are missing a keyword in their search) that always get answered with reference to the search function or direct links to five or six relevant topics.

#25
Psychologic

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Beautiful Boltman. Every time I look at the model I see something new. The axe is the most striking thing to me, and making it a double-headed one really lets it stand out.

Kurgan, wonderful job on putting this pack up again. Always enjoying to see this tutorial.
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