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Painting Tutorial: Force Grown Drone

Painting Tutorial: Force Grown Drone

written by:  Ian Welin

In this tutorial I will go over how I painted a Force-Grown Drone for the Spire faction in the game Conquest: The Last Argument of Kings by Para Bellum Wargames.

I painted this to what I consider a higher table top standard, a number of the steps can easily be changed for different paint styles and getting then done in a short period of time. I may also put together a version using just dry-brushing and contrast paint that lets me paint these up in about 20 minutes per model, this version took me about 2 hours.

I start with assembly, and will typically use a tiny drop of glue to hold the shield arm on for priming. I’ve found using a ball of bluetac or stick tac ends up leaving a small portion of the exposed mini un-primed.

I always do a zenithal prime to help me establish my light points. I don’t own an airbrush so just use rattle cans. In this case I used GW Chaos Black and GW Wraith Bone. It was the first time I had used Wraith Bone, typically I use Corax White, and I like how smooth the priming came out. I will definitely use it again.

I cant remember how I got into the habit but after I prime a model I always leave it for a day to dry and cure. During this time I will do my research on finalizing my paint scheme and colour choices.

Just before I started painting this model I then snapped the shield arm off, drilled a hole in the shoulder and mounted it to a paperclip with a tiny bit of glue, so it could easily be popped off after painting for re-attachment.

Here are the two assemblies I will work with for the remainder of the project. I start with an all over base coat. This is super quick, messy and the paints are always wet. This step is used to help establish a bit of atmosphere to the miniature and help push the colours one way or another depending on which colours you pick. In my case I used Scale 75 SC-45, Ardennes Green, and SC-29, Walnut. I mix them both on my wet palette and on the model to get different colours and textures. I used Walnut for the shadows mixing up to the Ardennes Green for the brighter areas.

Just work back and forth until you get the textures and colour values you like. I did four miniatures at the same time during this step, it took me about 30 minutes and they all have slightly different variations to the base coat. This will give them a more realistic look since the armour scheme I am going for is bone and no two bones ever look the same.

After the base layer had dried I was able to start working on the bone. I started to layer up using very thinned out paints, almost wash consistency, to obtain a smooth blend. I used Scale 75 SC-02, Nacar, and Scale 75 SC-01, White. I’ve heard lots of painters say never use pure white paint but I find it works really well, if thinned out enough the layers below show through and it never looks pure white.

Here I just slowly worked my way from Nacar through to White getting my blends smaller and smaller and my paint thinner throughout the process.

As you can see above the paints are very thin and you can even see the yellow sponge from the wet palette is influencing the white paint.

Just keep working your layers up until you are happy, I think I did about 4 or 5 layers for the bone.

Next I started working on the red cloth. To start I base coated all the cloth areas with Scale 75 SC-56, Violet, this will give all the red a really deep rich look and works really well as a contrast colour for the shadows. (You can see in the shield picture I got a bit ahead of myself and started working on the second step before I took a photo.

This step should also go fairly quickly as you are just looking to lay down the base colour. Dont be too thin with this or else you will spend forever getting full coverage. In the photos above I only used one coat to get the coverage. (Sorry Duncan but this isn’t a time to do two thin coats).

Next I used Scale 75 SC-34, Fuchsia, for the second layer. This was used on all the upward facing areas leaving the Violet as the shadows. The fuchsia was fairly thinned and took 2 layers to get this coverage but this allowed me to add a bit of a gradient from the violet. You can see as soon as the Fuchsia was added the Violet became much darker in appearance, which is exactly what we are going for.

I also mixed some of the Fuchsia with the Violet in areas I wanted to push the Fuchsia into the shadows a bit, this was mostly on the thighs and a bit on the arm wraps.

For the third colour on the cloth I used Scale 75 SC-38, Aldebaran Red, again this was painted on very thin allowing the Fuchsia to show through. The red was built up in 3 or 4 layers toward the highest point always painting toward the highest point in smaller and smaller passes.

Lastly I went back to the White and added a tiny bit to the Alderbaran Red for the very highest highlight, I used just the tip of the brush to make lines and add texture with this.

Then it was on to the base.

To start the base I used Liquitex Ceramic Stucco. You can use texture paint if you like, but I find this works really well and since its white I can paint it any colour I want once its dry.

Lately I have been using GW Doombull Brown and GW Deathclaw Brown. I just put them on a dry palette with a bunch of water then wet blend them together. Its tough to describe the consistency but it should cover the white base paint in one coat and still be easily wet blended together.

After it drys I paint the rim black and the use a Matt Varnish to seal it all in and apply whatever static grass, flock, and flowers I feel will go well with the miniature.

Ian Welin
Ian Welin

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