Wednesday, 25 January 2012

New paint scheme for "One Force" marines

 Hey there everyone!

I revealed my spots here and my desire to make "One Force" (my new name for this project) of marines that are general, definitely not chapter specific, that I can use with many if not all codices in order to try different flavours of marines.  I mentioned in that post how I would like them to look, and I'm starting to settle on a scheme and method of painting them.

First up, I have to apologise for the awful pictures in this post, I'll be re-working this mini anyway and when I have, I'll be posting much better pics, promise!

I needed a test model so rooted around in my bits box and grabbed a bunch of bits that I wasn't already using or didn't have plans/intentions for.  I cobbled this guy together, and as I have a real dislike of purity-seals and the "unnecessary" ornamentation that is found on a lot of marine models, removed as much as I could except for the chest-piece.

I've tried out a few variations, but feel relatively settled on this scheme (at least for now).  Its pretty basic, quick and easy, and nice and dark which is a part of what I was hoping to achieve.  The painting method is:
  • Orkhide Shade basecoat over the whole model.
  • Metals are painted with Enchanted Blue, plastics/rubbers are painted with Adeptus Battlegrey.
  • Metals and plastics/rubber are washed twice with Badab Black to make them almost black but with a hint of the underlying colour.
  • Catachan Green is painted with a downward motion over the whole armour, leaving the Orkhide Shade showing in the recesses.
  • Camo Green is used as a sharp highlight on the edges of armour plates.
  • Dessert Yellow is used to paint in a basic double arrow Chapter marking and single bar squad symbol.

You can see in the image above how the basic armour scheme came out.  After that, I started experimenting with battle damage and weathering.  I wanted to do weathering exclusively using what I had to hand.  I ended up using Calthan Brown (foundation paint) heavily watered down.  I also found that it helped to wet the whole miniature with clean water before applying the watered down paint as it helped it flow into the crevices.  The look I'm hoping for is less something that is actively covered in dirt, but has been roughly cleaned with only dirt remaining in the crevices.  I may apply the "dirt" more strongly to the lower parts of the legs also, but haven't decided yet.  For battle damage, as ceramite isn't a metal but rather a metallo-ceramic, I wanted grey rather than shiny metal.  In the image I've used black covered with Fortress Grey, but I think I'll tone it down to Codex Grey (Adeptus Battlegrey was too dark).

Well I quite like the paintwork - yes it looks a bit like Dark Angels, but I hope that the different contrast colours and lack of decoration will be enough to separate it from that.
In real life, the line highlight looks a bit too bright on the clean portion of the model, so may need to be toned down a bit, however, once the weathering has been applied, I think it might need to stay so bright to show through.
For future figures, I think I'll paint the chest decoration in the contrast colour just to lift the whole colour scheme a little from its very dark current state.
Its also pretty quick to paint.  Including the time I spent thinking about changes, it didn't take me more than an hour or so to paint this figure, and that included drying time for the washes.
I don't like the battle damage as it is.  Its too big, and just doesn't look realistic enough.  I think I need to reduce its size, make it more only along the edges, and if it is on the main armour pieces make it more like scratches/scuffs than the current chunks of paint missing.  I may also model some of the damage into points on the model.
The metals/plastics aren't very convincing, I'll have to experiment with that.

I'd really like to hear what you out there think and what changes you think I should make?  I'm going to be asking for as much feedback on this guy over the next few weeks/months till I'm happy with the overall scheme and style, before going ahead with the main force.  I learned from my wolves, each squad looks very different as my painting style changes/improved with painting them and now they just don't look like a cohesive force.  I'd really like these guys to be different.

Please comment, and especially criticise!  Cheers - Andy


  1. i quite like it, but you are going to have to think carefully about the basing. i think you will need something to offset the dark green, or each mini will look a bit dull (i don't mean boring, i mean dark, or lacking contrast, or whatever).

    i would be tempted to do a sandy base to go with the yellow on the pads.

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  4. Color scheme looks good. Dark, gritty. I like the green/yellow. Though I can't tell if you have a chapter symbol or not? I would like to see that.

  5. @Atreides: thanks man, I'm already considering the basing. I'd definitely like to style the bases throughout the force, but am struggling to figure something out. I agree with you that light colouration is definitely needed, so far my preferred thought is for scrubland - sandy bases with tufts of static grass, but I'm just not sure. I'd also like to make the bases a little more textured, any suggestions?

    @jcroxford: great to see you back, and third times the charm on the comments ;) The Chapter symbol is the double chevron on the left shoulder pad. I was trying to draw from military iconography, but I realise now that its similarity to the "standard" tactical squad markings might prove a problem. Perhaps a rethink is in order.

  6. Hey, bG,

    I like it a lot - although I agree that the chest eagle needs a lift.

    It's got a nice '2nd Edition' look going on which (a) I like, and (b) would suit older armour styles.

    Obviously, I mean the 'good' kind of 2nd Edition - not the blazingly-jarring-bright-primary-colours kind of 2nd Ed.

    Oh, and I think you meant to say the chevrons are on the right pad(!).

  7. First off, I don't think it looks at all like a Dark Angle.

    Second, I like the idea of no purity seals. It may take a bit of work, but if these are the "non-flashy" marines, I think it will look great.

    One think I might suggest is to do you metals (perhaps the eagle as well) in boltgun, and then wash it with Asurmen Blue, this gives it a blued-steel effect that might look quite good on these guys.

    I know that you just threw this guy together, but I gotta say that helmet looks great. Its not fancy like the MK7 or MK8, although it is older, that head has always looked like a "working mans" helmet,and I think that fits with your theme very well.

    I agree with Atreides that your base should be a bit brighter to go with the "dull" (please don't take that as an insult) color scheme of he army.

    I like this a lot! (but you are still a dirty WAAC-er, for wanting to play all the codexes!)

  8. Hey Drax, thanks very much. As someone who is very into their military background, any thoughts/ideas that I could use to help theme the army? I'm trying to go for an insertionary/rapid response force feel, so there's going to be lots of scouts, jump packs and teleporting terminators.

    @student teacher - thanks, I'll be trying out a few variations to the colour scheme perhaps this weekend. I'll also give the metals a try with the way you suggest, see how it comes out. The helmet I think is from a Chaos Marines sprue, but was just one that was attached to the body I found in my bits box.

    Thanks everyone for all the comments, I've got plenty to be getting on with with these guys for sure.



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