Wednesday, February 9, 2011

A Beginner's Guide to the Guard: Painting ye Average Guardsman

 Now, this won't be some kind of super-fancy guide to painting super awesome looking Guardsmen, as even I can't do that quite yet. This is just for those of us who want something that looks respectable two feet away but want to get through them as quickly as possible.

There are six main parts: the cloth of his uniform, his armor, any exposed skin, his gun, exposed metal and boots. For any metal parts I would recommend using Boltgun Metal for things like bayonets and Mithril Silver for any decorational pieces, like Aquilae. The rest, however, is up to you.

For my guardsmen I chose Bleached Bone armor, Mechrite Red cloth, bronzed/elf/tallarn flesh for skin (I like multiethnicity in my ranks) and bleached bone again for his boots.

As always we start by priming our figure. I tend to cheat a bit these days and use one of the color primers that Army Painter makes (in my case it's Skeleton Bone). This way I have already done half of my basecoating right from the get go.

The Unwashed Hordes

Next we need to basecoat any areas that are a different color than his armor. Use foundation paints for this part, as they go on opaque and can therefore easily cover up whatever color you primed with. Don't worry if you make mistakes- you can always clean up at the end.

Once you've cleaned up your base coating you can move on to washes. For the skin I use Ogryn Flesh, for everything else Devlan Mud. Devlan is a great wash that pretty much works on everything and makes it look more "real," and you can probably get away with Mud washing the entire model. You can also try using complimentary colors for the wash, such as Thraka Green on a red color.

After the wash has dried we need to highlight and drybrush using a lighter color. For drybrushing make sure to use a... well, dry brush. Be a bit more careful here but as always mistakes can be corrected.

Right: Washed and drybrushed but not highlighted. Left: washed, drybrushed and highlighted.

Once you've finished that step, you've finished your Guardsman! I would recommend doing each step for a squad at a time. That way you can keep on using the same paint for a period of time and get table-ready units all prepared at the same time.

For more info on painting Guard check out the painting section of the Imperial Guard archive on From The Warp or the Imperial Guard articles from Games-Workshop... just stay away from the tactica for the latter, as that's coming tomorrow!

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