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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-18-14, 01:51 PM Thread Starter
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Default Experienced: Painting an Alternative Be'lakor Theme

Greetings fellow wargamers!

It's time for another tutorial, as we go through the various Chaos forces. This tutorial will focus on the awesome model that is Be'lakor.

This tutorial, however, will focus on another paint theme that he usually comes with. In the images on hid dataslate he comes across as a quite grey and black fellow, with a silverblade. I always thought of that as a cool, but bit dull theme. So I combined a few ideas I saw around the net to make a combination that is both intimidating but also a bit more warm.

The end-result will be the following, in terms of quality and paint-theme:

Warning: This tutorial requires a large collection of paints. If you just started painting, contact me and I will try to give you a version that requires less paints than this. I also expect the painter to have some basic concepts of certain techniques, as this guy is not for starters. If you need tips on techniques, just ask and I will gladly elaborate and give some tips.

Before we begin
Time required:
Roughly 10-15 hours, depending on skill level.

Quality level:
Above tabletop standard - I'd say medium quality.

Skill level required:

Techniques used:
- Priming
- Layering
- Thinning down paints
- Drybrushing
- Shading

Paints required (Games Workshop line):
- Chaos Black (Spraycan primer)

- Matt Medium (Medium)

- Mournfang brown (Layer)
- Rhinox Hide (Layer)
- Cadian Fleshtone (Layer)
- Dark Reaper (Layer)
- Mephiston Red (Layer)
- Khorne Red (Layer)
- Yriel Yellow (Layer)
- Troll Slayer Orange (Layer)
- Ushabti Bone (Layer)
- Screaming Skull (Layer)
- Leadbelcher (Layer)
- Ironbreaker (Layer)
- Hashnut Copper (Layer)
- Auric Armor Gold (Layer)
- Warplock Bronze (Layer)

- Nuln Oil (Shade)
- Agrax earthshade (Shade)
- Carroburg Crimson (Shade)
- Seraphim Serpia (Shade)

- Bloodletter (Glaze)

- Matt Varnish (Pick whichever you prefer - I use the Matt varnish spray from Armypainter personally)

First step: The skin
Allright, let's get to it.

After he's primed in Chaos Black I always wash the entire model in Nuln Oil. As we are going to be using parts of the primed black skin, it dulls it down and gives it a bit of a basic shade. If you just prime it and leave it be, it can get a unnatural, glozzy look and we want to avoid that. So after that is done, he should be roughly like this:

Once that is done, and the shade is dried, we start with the skin. We're going to take Mournfang Brown and thin it down roughly in a 1/1 mix with Matt Medium. The reason for this, is that we want the transitions between the brown and the black to be smooth, as if the inner side of his thighs, chest and arms are the softer spots.

After 1-2 layers of this, and do take your time - Do not rush this step, as the transitions can be less than optimal if you do, he should look roughly like this:

After this is done, we are going to shade these bits heavily in Aggrax Earthshade. Make sure to do it heavy in the abdomen region, as the dark shadows will be to your favor later on. This can also help make some of the transitions better, if you have some you're not satisfied with - Just do a layer or two more shades in the transition area, and you should be golden.

That will bring him to this stage.

Now comes the fun part, and the part that is going to take the most of your time - And the part where you really need patience. This is what makes the figure awesome to look at; The skin highlights.

The first highlight is going to be a 1/1/1 mix of Matt Medium/Mournfang Brown/Cadian Fleshtone. You can add a bit more medium if you desire, it's all up to your patience.

With this mix, we're going to do the raised areas on the flesh bits that we just shaded. If you got the patience for it, you can do certain places twice, to get it a extra raised look, as this mix will not cover the brown completely - Which is completely intentional. Take your time, and pay special attention to the wings, as they are quite sinewy.

Once done, you should have something along these lines:

Don't worry, I will show a chest and abdomen shot after this. The wings pose a better example of the highlighting though, so we will use these for reference.

After the first highlight is done, we will continue with one more. This one being the last highlight, so it will be quite light - A 1/1 mix of Matt Medium/Cadian Fleshtone. Just as before, do the raised areas, but try to only cover 50% of the areas you just painted - If you overdo it, you could spoil the depth we have given him so far.

After this is done, your wings should look something like this:

You might think he looks a little pale - And you would be right. We need, as a final step on the skin, to tone it down a little bit. So for the final step, we're going to do a very thin layer of Seraphim Serpia on the skin. Just enough to tint it, but with no shadows because of it.

After that, he looks like this:

As for the black parts of the skin, they are quite simple actually. We will do the raised parts of the black skin with a 1/1 mix of Matt Medium/Dark Reaper.

After this has dried, you can wash it with Nuln Oil if you wish to ease the transitions. After this, it should look like this:

(I should note that after this picture, I give it one more layer of the mix above, to raise the Dark Reaper areas more. I just don't have a picture of it.)


This step s completely optional. You can easily move forward with the skin that you have just achieved, and be happy with it. Some people (like myself) prefer to do something extra about that scar in the middle of his chest. So if you wish for it to have a slightly wounded state, or infected if you wish, then here's how I did it.

After you have completed all the other steps of the skin, we will make a mix of 3/1 Matt Medium/Mephiston Red. At this point this is basically a shade, but we need the lighter color it provides compared to Carrobourg Crimson.

With this mix, we try to shade the crevices of the scar. Make it semi-heavy at the scar and do it lighter the further away from the scar you go. Try to not make the shade go beyond the arrows of the scar, as that will give it a more unnatural look.

Once this has dried, shade the inner parts with Carrobourg Crimson, so it starts out dark and gets lighter, the further away from the middle of the scar it gets.

Once this has dried, give the scar itself a little touchup of Cadian Fleshtone, to make sure it pops. It should look like this once you're done.

And that's the skin done. This is by far the toughest part done, so if you're happy at this stage with your miniature, then good job!

The details: Bones, chains and the armor

Righto, time to get those details into place. We will start out with the bones, as those are the parts that looks the most horrible straight off the bat. Personally I hate this step, as I always get hit with the "Oh god, what have I done?!" when I look at bone parts that aren't shaded, so I prefer to get them out of the way.

We will prime the horns, claws, skulls and other nasties with Ushabti Bone. Yes, this will require multiple layers and yes, it's a pain.

This brings the guys to this step.

Let's shade him real quick, shall we? A heavy (!) load of Aggrax Earthshade will save our eyes - And the miniature - from being in the sore state that it is.

Ah that's better!

Those of you with sharp eyes noticed that I missed the horns at the back of his head so far at this step. Don't worry, this has been rectified on the next step!

To complete the bone parts, we will drybrush the bones twice. Once with Ushabti Bone a bit heavily and a follow-up with Screaming Skull for those raised details. This has always been my preferred way to do bones, so I will keep at it.

This will bring him to this stage.

See? I remembered the horns! HA! (Just to note, there is a single skull in his loincloth that I haven't done - This is because it's easier to do it after we have done the armor, so it will be done later on.)

Now let's get on with that armor. For the armorplates that is on his thighs, his wrists and the rings around his body (and wings) we will don them in gold. For this part we will use the special mix I always use for gold, which is a 1/1/1 mix of Hashnut Copper/Auric Armor Gold/Warplock Bronze.

Remember the rings he has in his wings, and the bracelet around his ankles.

For the metalparts (chains, the chainmail and hooks) we will don them in Leadbelcher
After this, he should look like this:

For the leather straps, we will base them in a 1/1 mix of Mournfang Brown/Rhinox Hide.

After these have all been painted, we get on to the washing. We will wash the gold parts with Aggrax Earthshade while the metal and leather get's washed in Nuln Oil.

If you wish, you can drybrush the gold parts afterwards with the same mix as you based them - And similarly with the metal. I usually recommend this, as it brings back the metal shine that the wash will dull after a wash.

After this has done (and the skull on his loincloth has been done) he should be at this stage.

And that's the details done. By now he's like 95% complete and you can do the sword however you wish. So far though, I hope you liked the theme - And if you got any awesome sword themes, do let me see them. I always love new input!

The last part: Infernal sword

This part is also optional, as everyone has their own way of painting a sword. What I wanted to achieve was a sword, where it seems like the infernal power eminated fro the center of the blade, while the rest was as dark as a shadow. It is the Blade of Shadows after all

To achieve this, it is done in 6 stages. It will require patience and a steady hand.

The first step, is the base of the power. For this, we will use a 2/1/1/1 mix of Matt Medium/Khorne Red/Yriel Yellow/Troll Slayer Orange. We will paint the middle of the sword and try to emulate little spikes from the center and outward. The sword is quite small, however, so you don't have a lot of wiggle room.

You should get a result similar to this after a few layers.

After this is done, we will do a highlight with a 1/1 mix of Matt Medium/Yriel Yellow. Try to only cover 50% of the painted area and focus on the middle. Let the outer edges be, so you have a yellow to orange transition.

Roughly like this.

Next step, is that we glaze the thing with Bloodletter to give it a more orange tint and make the colors blend more. Like this.

The next, and final, step is a bit more fluent. You make a final highlight with the same Yriel Yellow mix that was made just before the glaze, to achieve the final glow effect. However, if you wish you can also fix some of the transitions with a 3/1 mix of Matt Medium/Chaos Black.

As a final thing you can do, is to make some broader orange transitions at the base of the sword, with a 3/1/1 mix of Matt Medium/Khorne Red/Troll Slayer Orange. I did this personally, just to make the glow go outward a tad more towards the spikes at the end.

After these steps are done, depending on how many you wish to make, your sword should end up like this.

And you're done! After the basing of your choice, your complete model with now be standing tall, looking like this:

Closing the tutorial
So I hope you enjoyed this little tutorial and found it useful. Personally I love this theme, as I think it gives him a lot more life and spunk than the grey theme he usually comes with. Alot of people, myself included, struggle a lot with fleshtones however, so I thought a tutorial on this guy would be appreciated.

I hope I helped out, and please do post your results in this thread, so everyone can see the various versions that pops out of this little tutorial!

Until next time!

Last edited by Nordicus; 05-19-14 at 12:32 PM.
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-18-14, 02:07 PM
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-18-14, 06:58 PM
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i must spread reputation around before bla bla bla...
great paint scheme, and great tutorial. Thank you!

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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-18-14, 11:55 PM
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well done..lovely tutorial and model..this is the reason why i still hang around heresy and put up with all the negativity...guys like you and your amazing work make it hard to walk away.
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-19-14, 12:56 AM
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Beautiful job. Well done.

boobs. that is all.
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-19-14, 07:11 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks a lot for the kind words fellas - It means loads to me and makes it worth making these tutorials!

Remember if you have any questions, just shoot and I will gladly elaborate
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-20-14, 04:35 AM
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Hey there - I just joined up to these forums with one intention, and to say that is one fine looking model you have created there! You have done a sterling job. I found it whilst looking for an alternative to the Dataslate version, which I consider quite dull for 40k - and as luck would have it there is a walkthrough! I haven't painted many models in the past - a Tyranid Trygon and a couple of others. I am quite new to this whole painting malarky, but seeing your image made me quite keen to get going. I understand most of the basic concepts, though have never actually tried mixing, watering down, or drybrushing. Hopefully I will do you proud!
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-06-14, 09:58 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Craglansun View Post
Hopefully I will do you proud!
I have no doubt you will! If you need any tips on how to do the various techniques, do let me know and I will explain as best I can.

Oh and do let us see the finished result!
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-25-14, 03:26 AM
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My Be'lakor arrived after more than a month of shipping, so I'm about to throw down some paint, and am considering to what degrees I'll use the default scheme, copy what you've done here, and strike out on my own, each...

This is definitely a valuable resource to have on hand!

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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-25-14, 07:01 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Mossy Toes View Post
This is definitely a valuable resource to have on hand!
I'm looking forward to seeing your take on him! When do you plan to start painting him?
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