05 November, 2012

Space Wolf step-by-step part 4: Bronze, Leather & Stones

Here we go with the fourth and final part on my step-by-step Long Fang painting series.  By now he's looking pretty close to complete, but there are still a couple of little things to do, as well as a component that really brings the scheme together.

My Color List for this tutorial (GW is from the Games Workshop Range, VMC is Vallejo Model Color, VGC is Vallejo Game Color,  P3 is Privateer Press Formula P3):

Black (Primer)

Bronze & Vertigris
VGC Brassy Brass
VMC Mahogany Sand
VMC Gunship Green
VMC Bluegreen
GW Tin Bitz
GW Devlan Mud
GW Thraka Green

Stone Talismans
GW Dawnstone
GW Ogryn Flesh
GW Ceramite White
VMC Iraquian Sand

P3 Bootstrap Leather
GW Devlan Mud
GW Ogryn Flesh
VMC Iraquian Sand

We'll start off with the item I most often get questions about, my bronze technique.

1: I start by basing the bronze with a 1:1:1 mix of VGC Brassy Brass, VMC Mahogany Sand, and GW Tin Bitz.  The Mahogany Sand does a pretty good job of beefing up the coverage of the paint, but some areas might require a second pass to get an even coat.

2: Next, I give the area a good wash of GW Devlan Mud.

3: I then go back with a lighter wash of GW Thraka Green.  If you are not planning to weather your bronze, you can skip steps 4 & 5 and add a simple edge highlight of pure Brassy Brass to some of the high points of the model, but I'll assume most of you aren't reading this tutorial to learn about factory-fresh marines.

4: I start the weathering process with a wash of VMC Gunship Green.  This is simply 4 parts water to 1 drop of paint.  This wash goes on pretty heavy, and I quickly go back in with a clean brush and soak up some of the wash, unless I'm looking to make a particularly heavy verdigris effect.

5: I then add a drop of VMC Bluegreen to my Gunship Green wash, and use that to more carefully add heavier verdigris to deeper areas, or places that would retain more moisture and result in greater oxidation.  Adding more drops of Bluegreen will give you brighter oxidation, but I have a lot of blue OSL in my army due to my love of plasma weapons, so I've toned my verdigris back to avoid the "glowy" look that it can take on (causing the verdigris to look more like misplaced OSL)

6: Finally, we'll go in and edge a few places with pure Brassy Brass.  Skip this step if you're creating a heavier verdigris than what I've illustrated above.

Let's take a quick look at talisman stones.  They frequent a lot of Space Wolf models, but unless I'm painting a competition piece, I like to keep them simple and quick.

1: Start with a basecoat of GW Dawnstone.

2: Wash with GW Ogryn Flesh.

3: Begin lining edges of the stone and the etched rune with a 1:1 mix of GW Dawnstone and VMC Iraquian Sand.

4: Add a bit of GW Ceramite White to the mix for a final highlight over some sharper edges, and to add a bit more pop to the outline of the etched rune.  Done!

Finally, another quick item to knock out is the leather.

1: Base the area with P3 Bootstrap Leather.

2: Wash with GW Devlan Mud.

3: Highlight with a 1:1 mix of Iraquian Sand and Bootstrap Leather.  Follow this up with a light wash of GW Ogryn Flesh.

4: Add a final highlight with a 2:1 mix of Iraquian Sand and Bootstrap Leather.

You're pretty much done at this point.  Depending on your model, you might also have a gemstone or eye lenses to paint.  Base your model to match the rest of your force and you're done!  If you happen to be doing snow-themed bases (and what self-respecting wolf isn't?)  be sure to check out my tutorial covering that subject.  This concludes my step by step Space Wolf tutorial.  Thanks for reading!


  1. Thank you for all your hard work putting these tutorials together. I will be following them to the best of my ability shortly! What kind of brush do you find works best for the free-hand?

    1. Also, what colors do you spray for your plasma gun OSL, and what color palettes would you recommend me looking into for a guard ally?

  2. I actually use one size for almost everything, only deviating to a larger brush for vehicle work.

    My primary brush is a Windsor & Newton series 7 mini, size 0.

    1. When I paint the plasma, I base with VMC Blue Green, and highlight by mixing in VMC Sky Blue and then Ceramite white for my brightest highlight. For the OSL, I just use a bit of my Bluegreen/Sky Blue mix and let the airbrush do the transition work for me.

      For the guard, that would depend on the models you go for and what your basing scheme is; I would continue to use bronze on the decorative metals (aquilas and such), but snow camo fatigues might be a good place to start, and maybe even keep the grey palette for any armor they might be wearing.

    2. Thanks! I was aiming for a vendetta and a whole lot of infantry with power axes... Was thinking about going with an orange/red for high contrast power axes and tie into the reddish dirt not covered over by snow effects

    3. That could definitely work! The warmer colors jump out really nicely with this scheme, to contrast the coldness of the overall model.