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About me - I'm a Christian (Pentecostal), Married to Wendy, two step children Thomas and Natalie, dog and rose-crested cockateel(Beauty). I've been a miniature hobbyist for over twenty years; I occasionally wargame at my local club or at home with friends. I set up my commission painting service in 2014, so I spend a lot of time painting!

Thursday, 1 May 2014

Step by Step Guide - Epic - Salamander Space Marines - Landraider

As Promised here is my step-by-step guide to painting Salamander Space Marines. I will be painting a couple of Land Raider MkIIs using a mixture of Citadel(C) and Vallejo(V) paints in this guide. Before starting, here are a few pics of the finished minis.

1. Clean-up the casting, removing mould lines and flashing.
2. Clean the casting, with a little liquid soap, warm water and a toothbrush. This removes any release agent the caster may have used and helps to prevent paint chipping.
3. Superglue the casting together. I use high viscosity superglue. Because it is thicker, it holds the parts together better whilst drying (next to no holding and bits falling off before dry).
4. Attach the built(dry) mini to the base, again using superglue.
5. Using slightly watered down PVA I attach the sand. This is a mix of modelling sand and Chinchilla dust (much finer, ideal for epic).
6. Once the PVA is dry I add another thinner layer of PVA. This prevents the sand from falling off.

7. With the mini based and attached to a holder with poster tack, I airbrush on an undercoat. This is a 1:1 mix of Vallejo Airbrush Thinner and Black Surface Primer. Once complete, I use a hairdryer to speed up the drying time.
8. I airbrush on the basecoat. This is a 3:2 mix of Vallejo Airbrush Thinner and Game Color Dark Green. I apply three thin coats to achieve a solid colour. In between each coat I give my airbrush needle a quick clean and use the hairdryer to speed up the drying time.
9. I then airbrush on a 1:1 mix of Vallejo Airbrush Thinner and Gloss Varnish. This protects the airbrushed layers and provides a good surface to paint onto.

The next stage involves adding many thinned layers of paint to the mini. For this stage I created a simple wet palette. This helps to maintain the paints consistency for a long period.
The wet palette is made up of a small plastic tub, inside which is a piece of packing foam (the grey stuff you get protecting your new metal mini), on top of which is some paper towel, then greaseproof baking paper. A liberal amount of water is added (until the top paper is slightly soaked). This is then used like a regular palette. Because of the moisture underneath, the paint pools and takes its time to dry out. If you air seal this in a container, the paint should stay wet overnight.  
10. The first layer of highlights to the green areas has been added with a thin coat of Warpstone Glow(C).The method used for adding these layers is as follows. Apply paint to the tip of your brush (doesn't have to be your best brush), remove most the paint by dabbing on paper towel. Working on sections of the tank at a time; paint a line of paint were you want the brightest highlight, then work the brush away from this line (in a side to side motion) away towards the darker area, then work in reverse back the the brightest side. Where you finish your brush strokes will be were you deposit the most paint, and should therefore be your brightest a. Try to stay off the darkest areas to create the shading. This will be painted in at a later stage, so don't panic if you make mistakes. The result should be a gradient of colour from light to dark. Over several layers this will become more pronounced.

11. The second layer of highlights to the green areas has been added with another thin coat of Warpstone Glow(C).
13. The third layer of highlights to the green areas has been added with another thin coat of Warpstone Glow(C). You should start to see the characteristic Salamander colour starting to show.
14. The fourth layer of highlights to the green areas has been added with another thin coat of Warpstone Glow(C). With this layer more time is spent evening out the colour to ensure a nice blend.
15. The fifth and final layer of highlights on the green areas. This one is taken straight from the pot of Warpstone Glow(C). I do lick my brush before loading the brush, so its not completely undiluted.
16. At this stage shading is added (before any more highlights). I use Caliban Green(C) straight from the pot (wetting the brush with my lips before hand). Dots are placed on and around all rivets, a line of paint is added in the deep shaded areas. Some fine detail areas which require a steady hand and small brush, I just paint over, then with a cotton bud I remove the paint from the highlight areas (much quicker, same result).
17. This stage adds hard edge highlights with Moot Green(C) (again from the pot). Its applied to all the green edges and rivet tops. The finished look will be severe, but this will be toned down in the next step.
18. A glaze of Waywatcher Green(C) is applied to all the green areas. This is done in an even thin coat, avoiding puddles or too much gathering in recesses; it is not a wash. The results are impressive, all the green areas are harmonised. The layers blend better and the hard edge highlights are toned down.
19. Extreme hard edge highlights are added to the green areas with Moot Green(C). Copying step 17, but this time concentrating on hard edge corners and rivet tops. This step really makes the green pop.
20. Paint the black areas with a thinned coat of Black paint.
21. Apply the decals, once set paint a couple of coats of black paint around them to help blend them in. How I create these decals, let alone how they are attached is a story in its self. I will get around one day to creating a How to guide.
22. Highlight the black areas with a slightly thinned coat of Cold Grey(V). Notice that I haven't highlighted the tracks, this is because they will be covered in mud at a later stage.

23. Extreme hard edge highlights are added to the black areas with Stonewall Grey(V). Concentrating on the corners and rivet tops, like we did with the green.

24. Blue light OSL (Object Source Lighting) is added to the weapon cells, headlights and view-port. Firstly Magic Blue(V) is painted from the pot on all these areas. Then it is diluted and blended around these areas (using a similar technique to applying the green blend). The highlights (more layers of paint) are focussed nearest the light source. Its important only to paint were the light will shine; any blocked areas should be left unpainted.

25. More OSL light is added using Electric Blue(V), following the previous step but painting nearer the light source and picking out the hard edges. Even in this pic you can see it starting to look like its shining.

26. Extreme OSL highlights are added with Glacier Blue(V), from the pot following the method of the previous step. You could add white after this for a brighter/shinier look, but I like to stop here.

27. Actually two steps to basecoat the emblem on the door. The outer gold ring with Hammered Copper(V) and the white Salamander with Wolf Grey(V). Both straight from the pot.
28. The second and only highlight on the door symbol. The top left half and bottom right third are painted with Glorious Gold(V) and the main body of the Salamander's head is painted White.
Between these two stages I basescoat the sand on the top of the base with a thinned coat of Cayman Green(V). I also realised that I missed OSL on the top view port, so I completed that. 

29. Damage, Even Space Marines get their armour scraped/chipped/worn. This is added straight from the pot, green areas with Escorpena Green(V) and the black with Sombre Grey(V). Concentrate around edges, areas of high ware and general scratches.
30. To give the larger areas of damage some depth, paint inside the previous layer with Charred Brown(V). This is applied from the pot to both black and green areas. The hardest part of this is finding all the damage you previously added, just be methodical.
Between these two steps I painted the rim of the base and some random mud patches on the sand with Earth(V).

31. The deepest damage is added with Chainmail(C). This is applied from the pot, following the last step, inside the brown areas. Try not to be overcareful about this, its random damage, so use rough strokes, dabbing actions to get a rough effect. You can also use quick strokes of the brush to add deep scratches outside of the brown areas.
The next few steps are completed on the base. First the top is washed with unthinned Agrax Earthshade(C). Once dry the green areas are highlighted with Dead Flesh(V) and the mud with Khaki(V).

32. Agrellan Earth(C) is painted/daubed on/and around the tracks and on the base were the tracks would have drove over.
Once this mud is dry (helped along with my trusty hair drier) a coat of matt varnish is applied to preserve the paintwork.

*Edit - Following comments on the pics regarding the appearance of the mud and some paint tests; I have decided to move stage 32 applying Agrellan Earth(C) back some stages before the Agrax Earthshade(C) wash is added. The wash is then added over the Agrellan Earth, only on the tracks and base making them appear wetter, while the rest of the mud looks dried on. Here is one last pic, the tracks on the right have been washed.

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