Bloodthirster – I shall call him George

Img0048My latest project has garnered me a lot of positive feedback.  I teased a picture of “George” in my army picture a few weeks ago.  I’m just getting to the quick and dirty tutorial for those that are interested in the colors and techniques used.

I assembled the entire model completely before painting.  I’m always hesitant to do this, as I like to airbrush as much as possible before moving on to detailed brush work.  I also like to magnetize weapon options, but ultimately felt that the other two builds left too many small thin pieces that would ultimately break.  So, George has a giant axe!

I had zero problems assembling this kit.  Each piece fit like a glove once the flash and sprue connection points had been trimmed and cleaned.  I assembled it over the course of 2 days, allowing the larger pieces to fully bond and set before moving on the final details.  Upon completion, I primed black using the last of my Citadel black primer.  I really like the fine mist from the nozzle on this product, even if I hate the price point.  I will note that I primed in almost 100 degree weather (45% humidity).  You can still achieve fine results with primer outside normal conditions as long as you don’t apply primer in direct sunlight and you apply THIN coats.  I immediately brought George back inside, and after about 20 minutes, applied a complete black base coat using Vallejo Black airbrush primer.

This entire paint scheme was applied using mostly 3 basic techniques:

  • Airbrushing (zenithal)
  • Drybrushing
  • Washes (used as thick glazes)

When I airbrush citadel paint, I thin it down to the consistency of milk using tap water and once mixed I apply a small amount of alcohol to the mixture just before spraying.

I applied GW Dryad Bark as a base coat on the skin, leaving the darkest shadows black, by never spraying at an upward angle base.

I followed up with spraying GW Hexed Lichen/Xerus Purple into the shadows on flesh (spraying upward in a reverse zenith) and the same on the wings.

The primary base coat color then becomes Mephiston Red, sprayed onto the wings in the middle and to the outer edges and onto the flesh from the top down to about the perpendicular point.

The winged then got a smaller highlight of Hot Orange/Troll Slayer Orange, inside the red section, building the colors up to the center.

The skin was subsequently highlighted with Heavy Skintone/Cadian Fleshtone

Back to the wings, I used an even smaller highlight of Yellow inside the orange and to the edge of the wings.

The final highlight on both wings and skin was Screaming Skull.  Just as a central highlight on the wings, and as a Zenithal highlight on the skin, especially higher points, like the face and upper muscles.

At this point, the model looks fairly different from its final colors scheme, but I’m almost done with airbrushing.  First, I used Abandon Black slightly thinned with a brush to touch-up the bits that had over-spray, like the bone part of wings, armor, horns, etc)

Finally, I airbrushed Celestial Grey to highlight the sections of bone colored elements, like horns, bone, talons, spikes.

Dry Brush

I used a medium dry brush and applied Screaming Skull lightly to all painted sections of the model.


For the wings and flesh, I used three washes that I wet blended.  Each was slightly watered down with water.

Reikland flesh on the brightest parts of the wings and the upper surfaces of skin.  Carrionburg Crimson on the reddish sections of the wings and the side of the flesh.  Finally, Druchii Violet on the shadows up to the bone segments, and shadows of the flesh.

Using Agrax Eathshade, I washed the bone and horns.

Dry Brush

Applied in 3 layers, I did a heavy dry brush of warp bronze on the armor and all metal parts of the weapons, leaving shadows black.  I used Gehenna Gold, with somewhat less pressure and drier highlights.  Finally, Runefang steel on only the edges and highlights.


At this point you just have details left, to whatever level of effort you want to invest.

I applied Dryad Bark and then Screaming Skull via dry brush to the leather straps and spikes, followed by a brown wash.

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