Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Tutorial: Painting Horses, 28mm

Continuing on with some Middle-earth figures this week...and I thought it might be a good idea to publish a step-by-step for painting horses for those who are interested in the subject.

So, starting out with the Valiant Rohirrim box...


We find that there are 18 cavalry figures in here. But only two different horse sculpts. What!?! So I'm going to end up with 9 horses with heads up and 9 horses with heads down. That's ridiculous. Now, having said that, the horse sculpts you do get are excellent. They are two very beautiful models.

I'm painting these guys up for my Middle-earth game, so I thought I'd go to the internet to get some source material. Looking at Hasufel, the Chestnut ridden by Aragorn in this pic, and Arod, the Grey ridden by Legolas, I decided to use these two for the inspiration for the pair of models I was going to do for this tutorial.

Another Grey. This one is Snowmane...Theodin's horse.

And Aragorn on Hasufel again.

There are a number of color variations for Chestnuts and Greys (as well as any other type of horse), so I used a couple of other photos for guidelines. Another Grey here. Notice the dark legs and nose.

And a Chestnut glamor shot. I liked this one because it showed off some nice white socks.

Well, with source material sorted out, I started into contruction. These are just two-piece figures, and they went together without any trouble. There was a slight seam between the two halves, so I busted out the great new liquid green stuff filler from GW. You know, GW puts out a lot of hobby crap. A lot of over-priced hobby crap in most instances. However, I have to say that the new liquid green stuff is magic in a jar.

OK...primed white.

Black wash. As always, this defines the detail on the figure and gets some base line shading in.

Base coats. I'm using Foundry's Arctic Grey set on the Grey horse, and Chestnut for the...Chestnut. The base coat is put down very thin.

Some darker shading next. I'm using Vallejo washes most of the time now. This is a great new product line. The Grey gets a wash of black, and I also added a little black paint to the wash to do the legs. I washed the Chestnut with a mix of Umber and Fleshtone. I think the challenge with a Chestnut, which is essentially a mono-color horse, is to get a convincing tone of paint. Mixing these two washes helped achieve that (I hope).

I darkened up the Grey's mane and tail, and then when on to highlighting. The muscle articulation on the sculpts was subtle, but very nice. I just used the sculpt as a guideline for laying down the highlights, which were painted on as fairly light glazes. Just a few passes each. The Grey gets the mid-tone Arctic Grey and then a little White. The Chestnut just gets the mid-tone Chestnut paint. I didn't go any lighter, because the second paint in this set is light enough for the color I was looking for.

OK, with the coat colors down, I went in and did the hooves (Rawhide for the Chestnut). I also did the socks on the Chestnut, starting with grey and then highlighting in white. There isn't a lot of tack on these horses. Just the armored head piece, some leather straps, a saddle blanket and the saddle. Didn't pay too much attention here, since the rider figure covers most of the saddle. Finally did the base as well, and that's it. Two horses from Middle-earth (or New Zealand, or where ever).

Popped on the riders, and Bob's your uncle.

Hope you found this tutorial useful. If you have suggestions for how I can make posts more useful for you, just send a note.

'Til next time.

32 comments:

  1. Very nice tutorial..and the result is excellent..thanks :-D
    Cheers
    paul

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  2. Excellent tutorial. Oddly enough I'm about to start painting 18 of my own and was thinking about using the "dip" method but this looks like a good alternative. Were the riders painted the same way? When you washed over the base coat was that wash over the entire model or was it restricted to shadow areas?

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  3. Ron,
    When I wash black, I put it over the whole model. My wash is a mix of Future Floor Wax, some black and dark brown paint, and some matte medium. I keep it pretty thin so that the white base coat stays prominent.

    Riders pretty much painted the same way.

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  4. The wash I was referring to is the one you used after the Arctic Grey and Chestnut colors were applied. Sorry to be unclear.

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  5. Ron,
    Ah, yes. That wash was again over the entire model. It was kept thin and coaxed to settle into low-lying areas.

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  6. Thanks for the excellent tutorial Kevin. I got lots of horses to paint. Now I only need to see you in action!

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  7. Excellent tutorial Kevin. I will try this method myself next time I do some cavalry.

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  8. Great! Thanks Kevin, again super tutorial.

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  9. Great tutorial! The both look beautiful, especially the grey! Thanks for the heads up, I'll give this idea a go.

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  10. very clever use of paints they look great

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  11. Great tutorial! Did you order those Vallejo washes online or buy locally? They look pretty useful. I'm about to start trying the glaze/wash over white technique (which I've never done) on some infinity models and these washes might work well for that.

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  12. Minijunkie,

    Hi Jarrett. Got the Vallejo washes down at the computer store in Red Deer. Was surprised at the great selection of products they had there.

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  13. Nice tutorial! Thanks for this. I use the Foundry paint range for horses as well. I like their colour depth and how marvelously opaque they are. If you're ever in Regina you should drop me a note so we can get you in for a game with our local group (currently embarking into SAGA).

    Regards,

    Curt

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  14. Curt,

    Great to hear from you. We play a lot of SAGA over here in Edmonton as well!

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  15. excellent tutorial

    I'm just getting ready to start working on some Knights of Dol Amroth and was a little intimidated by doing my first 28mm horses

    Ill be stopping back to use your ideas for sure

    thanks again

    Steve
    www.fungamesroom.com

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  16. I hope you don't mind if I follow you. I'm hoping to paint some mini's soon and am leaning towards doing a horse regiment (not sure what period yet) and your blog was recommended as a good tutorial. I have to learn everything, paints, washes, base coats, brands, prices, techniques before I start. This tutorial is excellent. I would not have known how using the black wash brings out the detail had I not read this. Thank you.

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  17. Anne,
    Great to have you on board. If you have any questions, please shoot them over. I'll do my best to help you out.

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  18. just discovered your blog and i really like this tutorial. im really under confident on painting horses and cavalry, cant seem to get it right. this helped me alot! now to finish my 3 boxes of royalist cav for P&S! thanks a bunch!

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  19. Grimsi,
    Great to see you here. Enjoy.

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  20. Very nice tutorial, I have some horses in 1/72 and a couple of 28mm centaurs waiting for paint. I'll use your tutorial as inspiration.
    Got yourself another follower
    Cheers
    joakim

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  21. Thanks for the tutorial, my third ever horse is a Grey and a 1/72 (yeah I like it easy....!!!) Your tutorial has given me more confidence, while not up to your standards, the 2 Greys I have now completed i'm more than happy with...thankyou

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  22. Great ideas that I can use. I appreciate your sharing of these techniques.

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  23. This tutorial might be a few years old, but as I'm getting read to paint up some cavalry figures for my LOTR collection, this was a great read.

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  24. Just found this tutorial,and it's exactly what I am looking for, with my Kings of War cavalry. Thanks Kevin :-(

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  25. Excellent stuff, I paint my miniatures in a similar style but use ink mixed with Klear and also acrylic inks as washes as well as my own 'brews'. You have inspired me to paint some Norman/1st Crusader Cavalry and their Arab opponents.
    With all the rubbish wet weather we get in Ayrshire at the moment then it seems an excellent time to start painting again.

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    Replies
    1. Oldpete...good to hear. It's great that people are still getting something out of this post after so many years.

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  26. Good ideas deserve it.

    Regards

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  27. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  28. I like this tutorial...very good result

    regards Michael

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Michael. Remarkably, several years on, this tutorial is still getting hits.

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