Painting Guide: Storm Trooper

Today I was able to take the afternoon to paint up a test Storm Trooper using the previously mentioned paint scheme as my guide. In the end I was reasonably satisfied with the result, although I admit that I'm a little rough around the edges: this is the first model I've painted in about 6 years. This article is a step-by-step guide to how I painted this model.

Step 1: Undercoat

The first step was of course to make sure that everything started off from the black undercoat. I had primed the model with Chaos Black spray yesterday and today I started off by taking a slightly watered down Chaos Black to the areas I missed with the primer. Once dry, I'm ready to apply the base colours.

Step 2: Base Colours

Now it's time to apply the base colours for the model. I used Tallarn Flesh, one of the new-ish foundation paints to the face, Chainmail to the metallic parts (in retrospect I probably should have used Boltgun Metal), Fenris Grey (another foundation paint) to the armour, and Scorched Brown to the leather parts. Obviously, the model looks like ass at this stage.

Step 3: Armour

This was a small step, but what I did here was paint over the Fenris Grey areas in my 1:1 mix of Enchanted Blue and Chainmail. It looks quite bright from the picture. Again, in retrospect, I don't think I need the Fenris Grey foundation. The cloth areas were painted a 2:1 mix of Chaos Black and Codex Grey.

Step 4: Washing

Now to apply the washes. The entire model, except the face, is washed with Badab Black. Once dry, I applied a wash of Ogryn Flesh to the face. What you see in the picture below is the result after drying.

Step 5: Face Details

At this point, I decided to focus on the facial details. I applied Tallarn Flesh the raised areas of the face (nose, cheeks, chin), and metal over the optics on the left eye. For the eye, what I do is paint a black oval on the raised part of the eye (helped by the wash if you see the Step 4 picture), and then paint two white dots on the right and left side of the black oval. I tried to the same kind of thing to the mouth and teeth, but garbled it (my bad. After I took the pictures I fixed it up).

Step 6: Armour, Lenses, and Leather

I admit that after the face I went nutso on the paint job without taking any pictures, so I've combined the following items into one step (which is obviously isn't). Both the armour and leather were brought back to their base colour, avoiding recessed areas made darker by the wash. The lenses were painted Enchanted Blue, then Ice blue in the lower right part, followed by a white dot or streak in the top left. On the leather pouches you can also see highlighting in the form of Calthan Brown (in retrospect I should have probably gone with Bestial Brown, which I don't have).

Step 7: Armour Highlighting

This step was a bit of a gongshow. I thought I tested this properly when I hit up the GW and mixed the paints on a palette but on the model, my 1:1 mix of Enchanted Blue and Mithril Silver just didn't really differentiate enough from the base colour. I ended up going with a 1:1 mix of Ice Blue and Mithril Silver, but I think it may be a little too extreme of a highlight. The armour, because of its metal component, naturally sheens, doing some of the highlight work for me. Still not quite finalized on it though.

Step 8: Basing

At this point, I'm more or less finished with painting the model. I don't have my usual base colour with me (Graveyard Earth), so all I was able to do was base it with sand. But if you look at my Space Wolves, you can see how the base looks when completed. From the sand, I wash it with ... well it used to be Brown Ink, but now you could use Ogryn Flesh. Then I drybrush Bubonic Brown on top, followed by a drybrush of Bleached Bone. Finally, I rim the base with Graveyard Earth and static grass it. And I'd finish it with a coat of Purity Seal.

Overall Impressions

There are still a couple of really small details that I'll continue to pound out, but for the most part I'm pleased with the paint scheme. On its own, that one storm trooper looks ... well, out of place. But once the other 14 or so look just like him, I think I'll really have a good sense of how this theme is panning out. I do actually think it stays true to the intended scheme, and I'm excited about painting up standard Guardsmen this way.

What do you think? Any feedback is much appreciated.


Hudson said...

Excellent looking mini. On highlighting the armor, you might want to consider using Space Wolves grey or a mix on Shadow gray and SW Gray to taste. It would be a touch more subtle than the mithril/ice blue.

Brett said...

Thanks very much for your input Hudson, and I'm glad you liked it! I tested both of your solutions, and actually ended up finding a decent solution more directly:

For a two-level highlight in blues, I'd probably go Enchanted Blue, 1:1 Enchanted Blue / Ice Blue, Ice Blue.

So for the highlight metallic blue, I kept the ratio of blue to metal at 1:1 by adding equal parts ice blue and mithril silver to the existing mix (the same amounts as in the original mix) So now the full mix is 1:1:2 Enchanted / Ice / Silver. I'll have to post pics of the squad when it's completed.

kaneda21 said...

Hey Brett,
I'm thinking of starting a space wolves army but funny enough I was looking for an ICE BLUE paint scheme instead of the standard codex grey or shadow grey/space wolves grey. Thanks for the tutorial... quick question though. I was thinking Ice Blue and then doing Silver for trim and imperial symbols, wolf crests etc, however do you think a shiny metalic bronze would work better?