Wargaming Tradecraft: Painting the Mountain King's Stones


Painting the Mountain King's Stones

After painting the Mountain King's skin, his stones were the other large task I was faced with. It meant a lot of airbrushing, time consuming edge highlighting and possibly the most tedious task I have ever done in my time painting.

All well worth it and along the way his "stones" became more "crystal." The artistic process is a fluid one. Allow your vision to shift if things start veering away from your original destination as long as you're pleased with how it's coming together.

Take a look at the Elemental King's completed photos and an outline.

Airbrushing the Stones

Over spray happens... if it does,
repaint and carefully fix it.
To begin, I painted all the stones with a deep turquoise. Didn't worry about all the little stones at this point.. I could have airbrushed them, but it would have meant a crazy process of masking around the stones to protect the skin from over spray. At that size, the airbrushing might not even be possible or apparent.

To paint the crystals, I mixed shades of turquoise together and layered it unevenly. Typically, I'd get lighter near the tips and edges of the crystals. Since I'll be edge highlighting, I didn't highlight anywhere near white.

If I was painting too close to the skin, I would usually hold a piece of paper to protect it.

Shade the Cracks

Like while painting his skin, I shaded the deep areas before highlighting. Didn't quite go full black, mixed with turquoise to make it really dark.

Shade the Stones

This part was mind numbing.
  1. Dampen the dark turquoise into a wash on my brush and paint a line.
  2. Rub it using a disposable eye-liner applicator.
  3. Repeat this for every face (side) of every. single. stone.
    Sometimes multiple times for larger faces or to darken parts you've already blended.

Shading is Done

So yeah, the stones are shaded now and every single dark area was shaded using the technique I describe above.

Yes, it took a long time and a lot of patience, but that's something I started about with Object-Oriented Hobbying. The technique wasn't complicated, but requires a lot of patience. I often tell people that being willing to take the time is all that's needed to create great looking miniatures.

Don't forget all the little stones

As mentioned, they're too small to airbrush, so just layer paint in a similar way.

Base it with the same colour used before airbrushing then highlighting with mixes of colour used during highlighting.

Yes, shading all these little rocks is done the same as above.

Edge Highlighting

For the shiny crystal effect, edges get painted bright.

Started by painting lines of the light trollish blue/turquoise on all the edges, then moved to a blend of and finally just white at the corners and tips.

Highlighting is Done

Not quite as tedious as the shading, but still time consuming. All done now and the highlights really make the stones pop!

Painting the Teeth

Originally, I'd planned on creating dark stone like Obsidian, but it wasn't bold enough. Instead, I went with a strong white which contrasted better. The steps for this was basically to blend black, greys and whites in layers, then finish off with strong white pigment like I did with his skin.

Painting the Mouth

As I showed when fitting the jaw during sculpting, I didn't glue it in to place. This allows me to remove the jaw and paint the inside of the King's mouth as well as add slime later.

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