Back when I owned this army I received quite a few inquiries on how I painted my Iron Warriors. To answer all of your questions I have decided to make this my first painting tutorial. Click on the image thumbnails for a better view.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Black Primer
- Air brush
- Tank brush
- Latex/Vinyl rubber gloves
- Cheap brush
- Badab Black & Gryphonne Sepia Washes (GW)
- Boltgun Metal, Mithril Silver, & Shining Gold (GW)
- Chaos Black & Bestial Brown paints (GW)
Before I get started I would like take some time and inform you on proper priming. The most important rule on priming is to never prime miniatures on rainy or humid days. Repeat this line ad nauseum!!! Moisture gets on your mini when it’s humid outside, you may not be able to see it, but it’s there. That moisture gets caught between the mini and the primer, and when it dries your miniature will look like it’s been sprayed in fine black or white sand. Getting that stuff off is a real pain, so save yourself some heartache and only prime during the proper weather conditions. That being said, let’s move on.
Now I used to use Future floor wax for this tutorial, but with the release of GW’s (Game Workshop) Citadel Washes that noxious mess is no longer required. Mixing Future into your washes, rather than straight water, breaks up the water’s surface tension and causes the pigment in your paints and inks to settle and dry properly in the recesses of the model, rather than on the surface of your miniature. While useful, Future does come with some problems:
I. Future leaves your minis coated in a medium to heavy gloss depending on how much you use. The gloss is also pretty resilient and will act as a protective varnish for your minis, but I’m not a fan of polished models on the tabletop.
II. Future is toxic if ingested. Many hobbyists out there like to lick their brushes after washing them off to reestablish a nice brush tip. That habit is easy to forget and can make you sick when using Future. If you use that stuff PLEASE be careful to not ingest any or leave it in a place where family/pets could get into it.
Since we are using GW products with this tutorial we don’t have to worry about ingesting toxins and gaining all those cool superpowers the following morning. All that said, let’s get started!
Step I: After the black prime has dried, it’s time to basecoat the minis in Boltgun Metal with your airbrush. I suggest you check out my tutorial on Airbrushing and practice on some old unused minis to get this technique down before starting on your precious traitor marines. A complete coat is important for this step so make sure no black is showing. Don’t forget your pistols/guns!
Use your gloves for steps 2&3. That is unless you like shiny silver fingers…
Step II: Wet-brush (just like dry-brushing but keep more paint on the brush) your minis with Mithril Silver using your Tank Brush, and let them dry. Just like in Step I, a complete coat is very important. The washing in Step III relies on total coverage.
Step III: After the silver has dried it’s time to apply the wash (GW Badab Black). The new Citadel Washes from GW are pretty damn useful. They pool in the recesses and when they dry you’ll find all your joint shading done all at once. Another fine quality of these washes is that they can be used right out of the pot with no watering down. You’ll want to use a brush that can hold a lot of wash so you can do your mini’s assembly line style to save time. You can find some nice cheap soft bristle bushes from Michaels Arts and Crafts.
The only negative I’ve found with these washes is the time it takes them to dry. You’ll have to wait around 30 minutes or so for the model to dry naturally. I have a halogen lamp on my desk that trims the drying time down a bit but it still takes my minis at lest 10-15 minutes. Make sure they are completely dry before moving on to the next step.
Step IV: Pick out the detail of the mini with Shining Gold. Hit the trim on the greaves, shoulder pads, chest, belt, backpack, pistol/gun detail, and helmet. Now grab your Sepia wash. Use a detail brush to paint the wash onto the gold trim being careful not to get any on your newly dried iron armor. It gives the gold a very ‘rich’ look I am quite fond of.
Step V: Paint interior of the shoulder pads, the spots between his armor plates (backs of the knees and such), tubing, helmet, and sides of your pistols/guns in Chaos Black, then paint any horns with Beastial Brown. Highlight the horns with Bleached Bone. Now it’s time to make these guys into real Iron Warriors: it’s Hazard Stripe Time!
After the stripes, apply your decals and you are done! Base your minis, and give them their weapons, it’s time to slay the lackeys of the Corpse Emperor! “Iron Within! Iron Without!