Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Horus Heresy: Iron Hands Sicaran Painting Progress

Today has been very productive, working on the first of my Iron Hands vehicles. The Sicaran is the first tank in my collection to have the colour scheme from the Immortals applied. I am very satisfied with the effect and speed at which I have worked so far and believe that I can build a sizable force, at a consistently high quality, in a short period of time. So wasting no more time, I have summarized the steps I took to get to this stage of the build. The first thing today was to get the base highlights into place - a series of grey tones which allow me to micro paint details later on, this stage was done very quickly and liberally with a air brush.

With the highlights in place, the next thing to do was blend the transitions by applying two coats of black wash, two washes were necessary as I under estimated the opacity of the wash I was using. The wash ties together the grey tones giving a much smoother look to the highlight pattern as you will see below. 

The initial weathering was done using a sponge, Bolt Gun Metal acts as the darker primary colour, providing a base of metallic transitions. Chain mail was then dabbed lightly over the darker metal giving a sheen to the chipping and highlights.

The more I do these brass bits, the more I feel they make the vehicles more suited to the Iron Hands. It is all too easy for the vehicle to end up looking like a black box, so having these colour breaks are essential. I have seen some people use white as the offset colour, but to me these end up looking like they belong to either the Black Templars or Raven Guard chapters. A final soft glaze of dark green was placed in the edges do again give a colour break.

The final part of the weathering phase was to take a fine detail brush and add irregular lines on the edges of the miniature. basically highlighting with a metal paint, it helps to tie the original grey tone highlights to the chipping effect. Very simple, very effective and most importantly very quick (especially for me!).

The transfers have a coat of Micro Sol on them, so I am waiting for that to dry before I go ahead and weather them. I am hoping that over night the decal will have become almost invisible and strong enough for me to sand some detail off, in order to give it a weathered feel. And with that, that is the weathered phase complete! I only have to finish painting the actual details such as the heavy bolter and lens, before I can say that this tank is done.

I am feeling optimistic that tomorrow will see the finish of this tank, which would be great, as a Venator and more infantry are on the way.

Thanks for reading,

The 14th Legion


  1. Yesss! I was so excited to see you post! The tank is looking so beautiful! I love it! It's even better because your techniques will also work for my templar version (I use red as my breakup color). I started experimenting with airbrush greys to break up the black, but didn't go as light as you did. I like your method much better!

    1. Glad you like it Greg, sorry it is up so late, I got carried away painting this evening :) I always tend to go lighter with my highlights as (for me that is) I find it easier to control the transitions with inks/washes.

      Really hoping I can finish this one off tomorrow, as the Venator is due in the next couple of days >.<

  2. Looks fantastic.

    Is there a particular grey you are using to highlight ?

    I've found many are too stark against black.

    1. For subtle highlights, I use Vallejo Model Colour - German Grey. For extreme edging I will add a lighter grey to the mix and then add a black wash to smooth it all out. Hope that helps :)