Chaos Lord & Steed of Slaanesh: Painting Progress #2

After my last short update with not much to see, I have something more worthwhile to show. As I said in the previous article, things weren’t going well with the steed and so I stripped the paint. The next day I got it primed again and was convinced I figured out a better way to do what I wanted, and I was right.

I won’t tell you what isn’t done, that’s pretty obvious, but the skin and scales are at this point. Something I realized is that even though I’ve worked hard on getting better at blending, sometimes a good old dry brush approach is the way to go. That’s what was catching me up the first time and caused me to strip it, just trying to do more than was required. Instead of all the advanced stuff, the scaled area was done with a dry brush, a wash and then another dry brush. The skin areas were a base coat, wash and highlight. At the end of the day, as long as you’re happy with it then who cares what techniques it took, right?

When I get to the armor, that will be blended though. It’s one thing I’ve said over and over, and sometimes I just need to listen to my own advice, is not everything has to be done amazingly well but pick out something and really make it pop. That one thing can carry the rest of the model. So, that’s how I plan to bridge the gap between quality and speed.

You’ll also notice I’ve done some work on the base. As it stands, minus the sand, snow and ice, what you see is done. I really tried to get some realistic looks to the trees and rocks. As someone who lives in Maine, a state that’s 90% woodland (literally), I know that trees aren’t just brown or some single color. Tree bark is an interesting mix of colors. So, when I did the bark I worked with red, brown, green, grey and even some fleshy tones. The inside of the tree was the same but I started with a greener and lighter color to begin with. The rocks I did simpler. Rocks often have various tones as well but I didn’t want them to blend in too much with the trees. Rocks are just greys and some sepia to tone it down a bit.

I’m happy with how this is coming out. The earlier setback really grated on me but if it wasn’t for that then I probably wouldn’t have done what you see now, so I suppose it happened for a reason.



I began playing Warhammer 40K in 2006, and have been an avid player and hobbyist since then. I have also been blogging about 40K for almost as long as I've been playing it, having started Creative Twilight in 2009.

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  • Berman

    I find that for anything organic in nature dry brushing and washes tend to give really solid results. I think it’s the haphazard way they apply paint leaving little blemishes and other differences across what you painted. It’s as much these “mistakes” that give organic elements a realistic appearance on a miniature as the details you carefully apply.

    • Agreed. Smooth and perfect flesh/organic stuff can just look a bit cartoony. Dry brushing might be a simple technique but it has its uses for sure.

  • Looks fantastic Thor. I love the purple scales! So much lovely contrast and vibrance! Never get caught in not using a technique because it’s not considered advance. There seems to be a community of “painting haters” who attack certain techniques. Anyone not praising art for the sake of just being art and being unique is a poop head. Do and use what you love to use and do!

    • Thanks.

      You’re right. I sometimes get caught up in it too. I’ve never dumped on a technique or anything like that but I’ll get “stuck” on doing something a certain way even when there are better approaches. It really is about the end result no matter the steps taken to get there.

      • Some of the very techniques that artists use today are merely the results of happy accidents in the past. Always try, always experiment, and don’t ever let someone tell you you can’t do something a particular way. They are always wrong.

  • Tyler Provick

    I struggle with drybrushing because I never use it so whenever I do try it it looks horrible. Here’s my advice for painting something like this without drybrushing:
    Ignore the sculpted texture and just paint the surface as if it were smooth. Then add a wash and paint edge highlights on the scales. This is how I painted the Intruder here. On his back I ignored the different armour paints and just put in the shadows and highlights as if they were there. Then I washed and edged the plates.

    • That’s very often what I do as well. I absolutely love washes for that reason. The problem here though was the scales. I wanted the scales to be the color you see now and of course after a wash the tone changes. With dry brushing it’s easy to come in after and get your color back where you want it and keep the shading in place. It just made sense here considering what it is but for armor and things like that, I do the same as you most of the time.

  • Loving how this is all coming together man. When the pieces are all together again it will be divine.

    • Thank you.

      I have to get some more paint tomorrow so I can work on the Lord. With the Steed mostly done, minus some details, things should go relatively quickly.

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