After cluttering up Narses’ scenic base a bit, I primed him and got to work on the base. (I always base first so that I can wash and drybrush without worrying about ruining the model.)
I didn’t notice Yriel Yellow was a layer paint until I was already applying it, but it’s the color I wanted and after a couple coats it looks good enough for Ork scrap.
I was originally planning to do texture paint next, then go back for the concrete slabs and any molded rocks I wanted to leave in place, but after thinking it through I realized I’d make a mess of that. So instead I went back and painted 100% of what I planned to keep, leaving bare only those bits of molded debris that I knew would be getting buried in texture paint.
This is my first time using a Citadel drybrush paint; I normally just drybrush with whatever color makes sense for the model. But for rust, from what I’ve seen, Ryza Rust is the way to go.
I experimented with it on an area of metal I was planning to cover with texture paint, just in case, and it looked great. When I washed it, it became quite convincing brown rust; that’s something I’ll keep in my toolbox. For Narses, I wanted fresh orange-brown rust on the scrap on his base, so I applied it after the wash — and, funnily enough, as dotted-on highlights with wet paint rather than with actual drybrushing.
Where I’ve overdone it, like on the Ork scrap, it looks orange. But where I went a bit easier on it, like on the missile cover thingie on the rear side of the base, it actually looks like rust. This is cool stuff!
I went back and dotted the overdone areas with a bit of Agrax Earthshade to hopefully tone them down a bit, and then it was on to texture paint. I plotted out my tuft locations in advance and deliberately smoothed out a few spots with those in mind.
After drying overnight, it was on to shading and drybrushing — and then done! Next up is Narses himself.
Dreadnought base color guide
I’ve got two Dreadnoughts in my current army list and a third in my backlog, and while I’m going to take pains to make their bases look different (because they’re 100% identical scenic bases to start with) I still want a reference for the colors I used on Narses’ base.
Shades are in italics, as always, and for most of these elements my final step is a drybrush rather than highlighting/layering.
- Concrete: Celestra Grey > Agrax Earthshade > Ulthuan Grey
- Skulls: Corax White > Agrax Earthshade > Corax White
- Rocks: Grey Seer > Agrax Earthshade > 50/50 Grey Seer/Corax White blend
- Ork scrap: Yriel Yellow and Leadbelcher > Agrax Earthshade > Flash Gitz Yellow > Stormhost Silver > Ryza Rust
- Imperial scrap: Leadbelcher and Retributor Armour > Agrax Earthshade > Auric Armour Gold or Stormhost Silver > Ryza Rust
- Shell casings: Retributor Armour > Agrax Earthshade > Auric Armour Gold
- Terrain: Astrogranite Debris > Drakenhof Nightshade > Grey Seer
These color guides are useful now (I refer back to them all the time — even a “standard” Marine uses a lot of colors!), but they’ll be doubly useful if I circle back to a particular type of unit weeks or months down the line — and if you’re reading this while painting your own army, maybe they’ll be useful to you, too.