Today’s the day. We were going to have this post last week, but Mother Nature had other plans so I couldn’t get around to it (immediately, at least). My paints have thawed now, so it’s finally time to actually put some colors on my Sisters.
I’m starting slow; I’ve set aside my Dominion squad to be painted first, since knowing me they’ll be replaced by Seraphim on the tabletop anyway. They’ll be my guinea pigs for the next few weeks while I experiment and attempt to get my painting skills up to something acceptable. If you’re wondering, the order of which I’m going to paint my current collection is something like this:
- The Dominions (minus their squad leader), because sorry, you can’t take up a fast attack spot and not have jump packs.
- The Battle Sisters (minus their squad leader), because they’re the easiest models that I can ask for, with one exception
- The squad leaders, because they’re slightly nicer models.
- That one Battle Sister with the Simulacrum Imperialis, because how in the hell am I supposed to paint that thing
- The Zephyrim squad (that I haven’t posted about just yet), because jump packs and because I’ve already based them and I have no idea how I’m going to mask their translucent flyer stand things.
All of my Sisters will be receiving the standard colors of the Order of the Mourning Veil, which is basically just a lot of blue and grey. As for how grey and how blue, well… I don’t know just yet. I’ve bought a ton of both in different shades, mostly for layering highlights if I get confident enough (spoiler: I don’t get confident enough.) Today, I’m just hoping that my hands are steady enough to apply a decent basecoat.
Anyway, it’s time to roll out the first Sister. I don’t have any spray primer or an airbrush, so undercoating by hand is the way to go. She’ll be getting two thin coats of Abaddon Black to start; I’ve said before that I intend to have our Sisters have black under their robes, so this is an easy way to get that taken care of without risking the rest of the paintjob. Also black undercoats apparently hide mistakes by making things look like shadows, which is a plus for me.
This took a long time, by the way. Long enough to make me immediately buy a can of black primer when I finished painting my second Sister. Part of this is because it’s pretty easy to miss certain spots when undercoating by hand, probably by just not holding the model at the right angle to make them properly visible. Most of the time spent at this stage was patching up these holes.
Basically, I’m not doing this a third time.
Next is to paint the robes in a nice Macragge Blue; the Ultramarines aren’t my favorite Space Marine chapter in the world, but their blue is perfect for the Mourners.
You might notice that the model’s armour is coated in less of an Abaddon Black and more of a Corvus Black, and that’s because it is. I got too excited and didn’t take enough photos, sorry.
You might also notice the inky black void that’s included in the background of these photos. That’s me trying to thin my paints, which I didn’t do enough of, I suppose. When it came time to paint the accents in White Scar, I found that some of the details were gunked up in layers of paint and I decided to just not paint them. I’m sorry, Duncan.
I’ve also thrown in coats of Leadbelcher for our Sister’s weapons and Retributor Armour for certain metal accents. In my opinion, those are the most fun to paint.
With metallics done, that completes pretty much all of the model’s basecoats. I haphazardly doused the entire model in some Nuln Oil because that’s what all good painters do, right?
I don’t know– this particular coat came out grimy. If I had to guess, it’d probably be a combination of paints that were too thick and me not taking enough care of get rid of pools and bubbles that occur with washes. Oh well, it’s not the end of the world; Sisters don’t exist in vacuums anyway. They’re rolling around, tousling with daemons and shit. Of course they’d be dirty.
No; what would totally ruin things for me was thinking that a coat of Ardcoat gloss varnish was a good idea. Tista was sold out of Stormshield at the time so I thought it would work in the interim. It didn’t.
I also thought that using Mechanicus Standard Grey as a highlight would work, which it also didn’t. Oops.
At that point I decided to call the model completed. It certainly wasn’t perfect, and in hindsight I could definitely point out things that were awful choices at the time, but for my first model ever I don’t think I did too bad. Not once did I ever feel like I was irredeemably awful at painting, which at the end of the day is all that I could ask for. After all, learning from your mistakes is what makes you a better painter (or, at least that’s what Duncan says.)
I painted a second Sister after this; this time using Mechanicus Standard Grey as the main colour for her armour instead of Corvus Black. In my opinion, Corvus Black was just a little too black for my tastes. Historically, it makes sense; the Mourners originated from the Order of Our Martyred Lady in M38 (an era in which that Order decided to wear pretty much all black), but I’m not about that kind of life.
She came out miles better than the first Sister, which I’m proud of. Turns out that you can use the original colour as a gentle highlight after you’ve washed the mini with Nuln Oil. I didn’t go much further than that this time around, though. I’d go on to actually use Stormshield matte varnish, which worked pretty much exactly how I expected.
These are the only minis I’ve painted so far. I have a bunch of stuff coming in the post to help paint the rest, so you can count on me to share them with you guys later. As always, thanks for reading, and I hope to see you next time!