Part2 : The Carnifex

Part2 : The Carnifex

War For Macragge : English - Le 4 janvier 2011

Thanks to Mathieu Fontaine, for the whole traduction of this step by step. Again, you done an incredible job, i can only be thankfull for this for maybe eternity :) !

Link to:

Genesis & building, The Carnifex, The Space Marine, The base, The end.

Painting the Carnifex

When it came time to paint this monstrous bug, I realised that there was two weeks and a half left before the contest.

Tic Tac Tic Tac says the watch…

Most of the work on the Carnifex will be about blending varnishes, the contrast between mat, satin and gloss areas. Overall the lights will be mat and the shadows satin to literally glossy. Posing the right lighting, have nice blending or a good color selection is not all. We also have to take into account the different textures, varnishes and effects when we want or realistic approach to painting to be credible. Clothing, armour, wood or skin will never reflect light in the same manner. In order to simulate these effects, the differentiation between satin, gloss and mat will be primordial.

I start with an airbrushed basecoat which will have unexpected results. I am so proficient with this tool that I can start with a basecoat and end up with a white basecoat since I literally overdo the lights.

We start by properly fixing the beast on a vice.

And we start ! We begin with an overall basecoat of Bleached Bone.

Then a wash of Snakebite GW + Liche Purple GW and Kommando Kaki GW

I keep going with Turquoise Andrea Color 2, Liche Purple and Snakebite.

I am then using filters of really thinned down Scorpion Green GW and Turquoise.

I am redoing the lights with Khardic Flesh P3, which will gradually be mixed with Jack Bone P3 and end with this last pure color.

Due to a lack of attention on my behalf, the last few washes were applied with paint a bit too dry. Miraculously, it gave me a light textured effect, which combined with the brush work to come, gave me a more realistic chitin effect than the initial aspect of the miniature.

We can observe on the last picture that my airbrush work, aside from giving me an interesting texture, was pointless… At least every areas are covered with paint. It is now time to start the brush work.

For that I’ll rework the shadows with a mix of Hormagaunt Purple GW and Kommando Kaki.

I rapidly make sure that the transitions of colors are perfect with washes of Kommando Kaki…

…and again the shadows. I never work all the shadows at once than all the lights or the opposite. I regularly go back and forth which allows me to manage more easily the contrast and blending. This also makes sure that the work is not repetitive. This is my way of working; it might be along yours or totally the opposite. There is no perfect method, only the one that suits you the most.

Back to our colors, I progress on my shadows with a mix of Liche Purple and Snakebite Leather.

I applied shadows and intermediary colors on the “exhaust pipes” on the back.

I push the shadows with Hormagaunt Purple + black, and then I add Liche Purple to the mix. I retouch the lights with Kommando Kaki + white all the way to almost pure white.

The glossy effect are realised in the shadows as follow:

-       Chestnut ink

-       Chestnut ink + Red ink

I then come back with washes of Leviathan Purple GW, Gryphone Sepia and Thraka Green. It is that last color, that undiluted, gives the glossy aspect to the strongest shadows of the chitin.

We keep going with the superior dorsal plaque. The basecoat is Hormagaunt Purple and Kommando Kaki.

Shadows and lights.

Inks and lights.

And a little picture of the progress so far.

I then work on the rib cage. The basecoat is a mix of Kommando Kaki, Bootstrap Leather P3 and Olive Ordic P3.

I bring the lights with kommando Kaki, Kommando Kaki and white, pure white and finally some glossy white from Model Color.

The inside of the cracks are filled with a mix of chestnut ink and red. I am adding more chestnut in the deepest areas.

The shadows of the rib cage are done with a mix of Bootstrap Leather and Greycoat Grey P3. I keep going all the way to Greycoat Grey for the strongest shadows. A really thin down filter of Liche Purple is applied on the entire shadowed area. Finally, gloss varnish is applied on the areas that received ink washes.

The face is painted in the same manner as the rib cage with the exception of the shadows which are pulled toward the red and purple.

I then continue with the chitin on the top of the head.

The skin of the legs is based with Bootstrap Leather P3 and Olive Ordic P3.

Once again I bring the lights to Komando Kaki and then white.

A wash of Hormagaunt Purple is applied in the shadow areas.

The “cables” inside the thighs are based with a mix of red and chestnut inks.

The lights are retouched with white.

And another wash of red ink.

And I end with a coat of gloss varnish. Meanwhile, the shadows were smoothed with washes of Hormagaunt, Snakebite Leather and Liche Purple. I push the lights with white to gain more contrast.

I do the same thing on the tail.

We continue with the carapace on the legs. Once again it is based with Hormagaunt Purple and Komando Kaki.

First shadow: Liche Purple and Snakebite Leather.

Then Hormagaunt, and Hormagaunt + black and Liche Purple.

The lights are redone with the basecoat mix. We can observe the difference between the parts that have been worked on and not.

Lights are done with Kommando Kaki, then mix with white.

I start to work with inks. Chestnut first and then I add red to the mix.

Everything is then cleaned. The scratches between the plaque are filled with chestnut and black ink. The gap between these areas were first retouched with Hormagaunt Purple and chestnut and black ink.

The spikes on the thighs are reworked.

The edges are highlighted with pure white.

Once again pictures of the progress so far.

I then move to the tail. The blades are based with Coal Black P3 and Jack Bone P3.

I bring the lights to white.

The shadows are based with a mix of Sanguine Base P3 and Coal Black all the way to Coal Black.

The lights are done in white on the edges of the blades and carapace.

The spikes on the back are redone with the same mix as the blades.

Once again I bring the lights to white.

And I end with a wash of Gryphonne Sepia.

The same thing is done on the hooves.

It is now time to work on the arms. They need to be painted separately so I need a form of support. A brass wire and a really little drop of super glue will do it. It will not move during the paint work and small enough pressure will make sure it will unglue from the wire.

The work on the arms is identical as on the chitin.

The flesh part between the chitin and the blades is painted with a mix of Bootstrap Leather and red ink.

The highlights are brought to Boostrap, Bootstrap and Kommando Kaki, Kommando Kamki and white. The shadows are reworked with red and chestnut ink, red ink and gloss varnish. In this manner the lights are totally matt and the deepest parts of the flesh glossy which gives us a more than interesting contrast of textures.

I then proceed to the blades with Coal Black and Jack Bone.

Highlights and shadows.

I can finally glue an arm, and another, and another… and another !

Carnifex done !

Color Code:


Base : Hormagaunt Purple GW Fondation + Kommando Kaki GW

Lights : Kommando Kaki, KK + white, white

Shadows : Hormaguant Purple + black, Hormagaunt Purple, black + Liche Purple

Inks : Chestnut, Chestnud and Red

Washes: Leviathan Purple, Gryphone Sepia and Thraka Green


Base: Olive Ordic P3 and Bootstrap Leather P3

Highlights : Kommando Kaki, KK and white, white

Shadows : Hormagaunt Purple, Boostrap Leather, Liche Purple, Liche Purple and Snakebite Leather.


Base : CoalBlack + Jack Bone

Highlights : Jack Bone, then white to pure white.

Shadows : Sanguine Base P3 and Coal Black, Coal Black.

Link to:

Genesis & building, The Carnifex, The Space Marine, The base, The end.

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