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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!

Sunday, 14 August 2016

Painting Guide, The Hobbit: Escape from Goblin Town - Bilbo

Hi All,

This is the first in a new series of painting guides, focussing on The Hobbit: Escape from Goblin Town boxed set from Games Workshop. I recently acquired an almost new copy from eBay & I'm in the process of painting it.

Games Workshop took a new approach with this set by not including a painting guide, other than an electronic one for sale for iPads. Not wanting to folk out for such a guide, I looked online & on YouTube for help & was disappointed with the results, other than 'Tale of Painters' blog which was of their usual high quality.

Personally though, I wanted to paint my minis using mainly Vallejo paints & for this I couldn't find any comprehensive guides. This will be my attempt to create one. Each blog entry will cover how to paint a particular character/piece from the box set, until its all painted. My hope, as always is to create a record of my work, help others who want to get similar results & help me to stay on track.

To start with I picked Bilbo, who wouldn't! Sadly, I didn't have the whole painting guide idea until after I painted the skin. At which point I stopped built a mini photo studio for my painting desk & took pics after every subsequent stage. Hopefully the next guide onwards will be more comprehensive.

To start will I want to explain a new approach I've created for doing my Hobbit/LotRs bases. I start by supergluing to the base top a premix, made of sand, crushed oyster shell, grit, small pieces of cork & baking powder. The last ingredient not only acts as the smallest gradient, it also activates the superglue quicker. Once this is dry I undercoat the whole mini with black primer (I used Halfords car primer).

As for painting the base, I came to the decision that I could cut the cost of painting by using 'DecoArt'  (DA) craft paints. These are readily available (I got mine from Hobbycraft), come in 59ml bottles with a variety of colours & only cost £2. Here's a sample pic of these paints:

Here's a guide to the base painting process which I do first, before painting the mini (unless airbrushing)
BC the base top unthinned Dark Chocolate (DA)
Drybrush the base top unthinned Antique Gold (DA)
Lightly drybrush the base top unthinned Buttermilk (DA)
BC all the larger rocks, rim of the base & clean-up the mini Black (DA)
Drybrush all the larger rocks on the base Neutral Grey (DA)
Lightly drybrush all the larger rocks on the base Slate Grey (DA)

Next, time to paint Bilbo, starting with the skin & hair. As I previously said I didn't capture individual pics for these initial stages, which are as follows:

BC the skin Tan (VGC)
BC the hair (leaving black in the shaded areas) German C. Black Brown (VGC)
WASH the skin Agrax Earthshade (C)
HL the skin Dwarf Skin (C)
EHL the skin 1:1 Dwarf Skin (C): Light Flesh (VMC)
HL the hair (inc. the feet) German Cam. Med. Brown (VMC)
EHL the hair Tan Earth (VMC)
Paint in the eyes black/white/black (VMC)

The remaining steps I have pics for:
BC the waistcoat Uniform Green (VMC)

WASH the waistcoat Black Green Ink (VGC)

HL the waistcoat Uniform Green (VMC)

EHL the waistcoat Camouflage Green (VGC)

Paint the waistcoat buttons Chainmail Silver (VGC)

BC the trousers Heavy Brown (VGC)

WASH the trousers thinned Brown Ink (VGC)

HL the trousers Heavy Brown (VGC)

EHL the trousers Desert Yellow (VGC)

BC the scarf Bonewhite (VGC)

WASH the scarf Sepia Ink (VGC)

HL the scarf Ivory (VMC)

BC the jacket Warlord Purple (VGC)

WASH the jacket 1:1 Violet Ink (VGC): Red Ink (VGC)

HL the jacket Warlord Purple (VGC)

EHL the jacket 1:1 Warlord Purple (VGC): Squid Pink (VGC)

Paint the sword & jacket buttons Silver (VGC)

Blackline were needed Black (VMC) & freehand ‘Bilbo’ onto the front rim of the base in ‘Hobbiton’ font White (VGC)

Last, Airbrush the whole mini (several coats) Matt Varnish (WC) & hand paint the metal areas Gloss Varnish (WC)

I hope you find this post useful & look forward to more!

As always if you would like a closer look at any pictures above, click on them. If you have any comments or would like to ask me questions or provide feedback, please fill in the comments box below (this will be moderated before being published on this blog).


  1. Thanks for doing these, I need to pull my finger out and paint mine! When I do, your blog will be invaluable!

  2. Thanks Barks, if your the one person it helps, that's fine by me. Stay tuned, Gandalf is up next!

  3. This is great! Thank you very much! I need to start working on my box now!

  4. Thanks Brian, yer get em painted & show me some pics!