Monday, 9 January 2012

Going Green for 2012 - Dark Angels WiP

Over Christmas and New Year I spent some time reflecting on what I was going to paint next and also decided to satisfy my yearning to assemble some miniatures, a process which is fun in its own right. Due to the way things worked out this year, I found myself at home on Christmas Eve happily assembling a sizeable number of Dark Angels veterans including personality figures like Azrael and Ezekiel.

After basecoating the veterans I realised "hey, there is a lot of bone white fabric to paint on these guys!" Closely followed by the thought "I need a break from bone white, I should paint something else." The final thought pulled into station brain shortly afterwards, which was "paint some regular DA you numbskull!" which seemed like a pretty good idea for my brain, especially as I haven't painted a single, honest to goodness, green DA figure since late 2009. Here he is.
I think he was one of the first figures I painted back in 2009 after I got back into minis again after the better part of 2 decades. The figure isn't complete here and I was using a limtied selection of paints, but I was quite pleased with how he turned out.

Anyhow, the other reason for going with non-veteran DA is because I can use my airbrush for the general green colour scheme, something that isn't so practical with the veterans.
The airbrush makes it easy to do a lot of figures quickly (I'm working on 8 atm) and also makes zenithal highlighting a lot easy. They do look a little weird until you the other details done though, as the lack of contrast of other colours does flatten the overall scheme.

The approach is straightforward enough.
1) Undercoat black.
2) Spray miniatures Dark Angels green.
3) Liberally coat the miniatures in a watered down baddab black wash.
4) A more carefully applied spray coat of DA Green to the upper parts of the model.
5) Mix of 50/50 DA Green and Snot Green which is then lightly applied to the upper parts of the model (best to just stand the figures in a line for this and then aim your airbrush as the lightsource and off you go.
6) Line highlight of watered down 50/50 mix of scorpion green and snot green.
7) Thrakka green wash over everything.
8) More black wash into the recesses as needed.
As ever, my macro photography is somewhat shonky but, hopefully you can see on this guy the graduated shading afforded by the airbrush. I'd say getting the right effect, for me, is about 50% judgement and 50% luck. The end result is that the armour is very very dark green out of the light and in it, well, its a slightly less dark green with the odd sharp highlight here and there. I may tinker with the line highlighting as I put more detail in, because in some places it looks fine and in others I think the line needs to diffuse more.
And yes, most of thee guys do have heavy weapons. I like my devastator squads and what I have here are 6 heavy weapons figures. I might make two part of a tactical squad and the others part of a devastator team. I've also assembled a few veterans with heavy weapons as well. If you like something, go wild!
The other two figures are sternguard veterans from the original metal blister pack which I picked up at Gen Con 2009. I may assemble a full blown sternguard squad at some point, using the three I've already painted as the core. The MkVI figures in the set are destined to become Consecrators, indeed one already is if you check the start of this blog.
It really didn't take long to get all 8 figures to this state, maybe a couple of hours work. I'll hopefully get the detail on at the weekend and then we'll see what we shall see.


  1. Very nice using the airbrush to define the zenithal!

  2. Cheers! I started to get the detail onto the model last night and the zenithal is becoming more noticeable.