Welcome to! Click one of these buttons to join in on the fun.

PracticalFW Imperial Space Marine

MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
edited April 2011 in Work in Progress #1
Yes! After a long run-up I'm finally ready to show you the next mad, mad project. This time a physical model that will receive full modeling, painting and weathering treatment. It's a large scale Space Marine from Forgeworld. Since it's a very detailed and expensive model I'm not taking this lightly. Over the past few weeks I've been slowly prepping the model and the last bits just came today, which are some separate etched brass icons to further enhance the model.
I also did some preliminary paintbrush testing on a piece of cardboard and some advanced weathering tests on a half-painted Dreadnought model that had been gathering since 3 or 4 years. I noticed that for future model shots, I'll have to set up some sort of light box or just block off any direct sunlight with white paper to allow for translucency but no glare.

So here are some pics.

First off: the gathered materials. In the background you can also see my PC used for my 3D madness.


Second some shots of my test-cardboard, the yellow technique will be used for one shoulder pad, the red for the rest of the marine.


And third, some shots of the new-style dreadnoughts I have painted over the past 15 years or so.
The first is the original model as they first came out, so god knows how old it is...


Second is a heavily converted one I made around 10 years ago, the left arm is fully converted. +-10 or 12 years old


The third is the most recent (metal) model and is still being finished. (hence the masking tape). +-4 years old, just been weathering it since a week or three (slowly).


Enjoy. :D
Post edited by Meph on


  • BinkermanBinkerman0 Posts: 0Member
    Takes me back to my Physical Modelling days .....

    I like your Modelling & Painting approach of taking it slowly keeping within the guidelines of the 40K Standards with this model becoming a relic .... The dust effect incorporated into your models is a nice touch, and only 15 years into the paint job on one of them, .... Like a sacred torch being passed onto your kids to complete the job ....

    Not so sure I'd have the workbench so close to the PC, or even in the same room .. but we should see some interesting 3D work from you in the coming weeks Meph, .. being high on Paint / Glue & Thinners Fumes :D

    All kidding aside, ... Good Luck with the New Space Marine model mate, ... Nice photography btw :cool: ....

  • ArmondikovArmondikov0 Posts: 0Member
    Dude, get a compressed air can and get the dust off those dreadnoughts!! But I'm impressed by the camera shots, they're turning out really well for something so close up.
  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
    Yeah, I should give 'm a good cleaning with my airbrush and a rubbing brush... :fishslap:

    @Binkerman: Indeed, who needs weathering powders to add instant effects when you can do the same things with a few years of dust gathering... some people just throw their money away... :lol:

    For the airbrushing I do that out of the terrace door (next to desk window) small stuff i do on the desk or table. Living in an apartment means I've got no space for a decent work desk or a 'dirty' room. :(

    But hey! The fumes are always good for that added inspiration. :D

    In the mean time Pic-Bomb! Some old miniatures I dug up from a box. A keen eye might also notice the 'true aging' technique with the gathered dust.

    I have some progress on the marine too, I'll post that soon too.

  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
    And here some progress on the marine.

    First, an undercoat of black


    Then a light coat of boltgun metal, some metallic medium and Klear. This is not meant to cover the metallic parts but rather provide some metallic patches here and there after the salt weathering. The urge to make a Grey Knight is suddenly tempting...


    Next a light coat of rust coloured paint, made from mixing various brown paints, inks and Klear. This is also applied irregularly to provide the rust flaking after the salt weathering process.

  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
    The parts are salted right now but I'll post some pics tomorrow.

    In the mean time I could use some feedback though. I did a little colour mockup in Photoshop of what I have in mind for the helmet. Never mind the crappy shading, it's just for colour placement.
    What do you guys think, is this pattern good enough to go for?

  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
    After a few further mockups, I decided to ditch the stipe idea dn just go for a full golden helmet.

    In the mean time, time for an Austin Powers quote...

    'mmMMm Shalty!'


  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
    Go solo-thread! w00t! :D

    The red basecoat.

    Candy anyone?


    First highlights. I gently sprayed two separate and gradual highlights on some parts of the model. Finally i gave some parts a soft touch with pure white to gain soem mroe contrast. As I thought and anticipated, this made the colour a bit faded and pinkish so I gave the model a sprayed red wash to enhance the depth of the red and then finally a gently yellow wash on white-highlighted parts to transform the pink shine in a soft yellow shine. This is a small shortcurt to avoid having to use half a dozen or more red/yellow mixes. Also, because the model is so large id does not need large and harsh highlights. A lot of weathering still to follow.


    Then played around a bit with the shutter settings of the camera.


    Higlights on the rest, as you can se, sole salt blew away during the airbrushing but this doesnt matter, they give some depth to the red as further highlighting and the washes faded them out a bit.

  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
    Amazing to see what can happen in one afternoon. :qq:
    I'm quite happy with the effect, but I wonder if i might not touch up some areas with red again...

  • BinkermanBinkerman0 Posts: 0Member
    Coming along nicely Meph :thumb: !! , ... Id finish off the base colours before touching up any areas with red, .... Assuming this is a Blood Angel, ... you'll be doing some gold for the Chest wings and possibly the Backpack skull etc, ....

    I think the Shoulder Pad damage may need toning down a tad (his left), ... maybe the top half should be touched up with some red to lose that peppered look ... I guess you'll be doing some worn metal along some of the armour edges too ? ...... Love the camera shots ! :cool:, ....

    Keep going mate !! .... Btw, what camera have you got ?

  • SebastianPSebastianP171 Posts: 0Member
    Lovely. I think it would have looked better if you'd used table salt instead of the coarse stuff - that armor looks in really bad shape now...

    The red/gold scheme used on the photoshopped image looked familiar for some reason. Didn't I see another power suit painted that way recently? :-)

    Also, you seem to have your priorities for space mixed up. The computer goes on the living room table, the models go on the desk. Then you can dispense with the TV - the place of honor in my appartment is taken by the microwave, which didn't fit on the kitchen counter with both the toaster, coffee machine and egg beater. :-)


  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
    Thanks guys!

    Indeed, the eagle's going to be gold. Got a super colour for it too. Vallejo has a gold pigment is an alcohol sollution. Alcohol's not too friendly to the airbrush so to be able to use I poured some into a tiny cup so it could settle and let the alcohol evaporate. Then I scooped the gold sludge into an airbrush jar, mixed it with acryllic thinner and voila, almost true gold colour. I used it for the helmet too. The cool thing is that you can actually polish the stuf by gently rubbing it. One I removed the salt I'll up some more pics.

    The gold came out a bit too thick though, hence the odd texture the helmet has now. I'll rub that down and add some more thinned layers of gold to lessen the contrast from the chipped weathering. The shine is also very difficumlt to capture on camera. It really has a very nice shine and feel to it to see in person.

    I'm currently still updating the red a bit too, the top of the shoulder pad was a bit too peppered indeed.

    @Binkerman: I bought a Canon Powershot A590IS last week. Only 149EUR, Considering the quality of the pics, quite a good buys even though I say so myself. :D

    And indeed, I got a full way ahead of me for weathering. Dry-sponged chips, oil paints for rust, panel lines and oil stains, weathering powders, graphite weathering (pencil)...:confused:

    @SebastianP: I tried finer salt on my test cardboard, but when it's too fine the salt has a tendency to soak up too much and become embedded in the paint, creating a 'sandy' texture that's not always wanted. I did gind it down just a tad with a pestle but yeah, it could have been a tad finer. But that's where the sponging comes in, that's very good for tiny chips.

    The armour.. hmmm, no doesn't ring a bell, the idea come from the very first version of 40K, Rogue Trader where sergeants used to have a similar sort of stripe on the helmet to denote the rank. In current 40K fluff, gold helmets are for Blood Angel veterans.

    LOL, ahhh the coffee machine, mine saves my life every day. Hevent had a microwave in 5 years or so. Don't miss it, anything you can heat up in there also fits in a pan, takes just a tiny bit longer and better taste. ;) Yarrr! Egg beater? You mean you got some sort of pigmy from Dark Afrika that stands around all day holding a fork, just in case you're in a mood for an omelet? Handy! I want one too!

  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
    The Helmet after some extra sponged on weathering, followed by a misted on, thin coat of gold again and then a prayed on wash of some Burnt Umber-like briwn ink wash, heavily thinned with Klear and some light touches of a similarly thinned yellow/brown ink. One this is dry, it's ready for some subtle highlighting and then it'll be time for thinned oil paints and some weathering powder.


    The rest of the model received some sponged on weathering with a dull metal mixed colour as well as some Bolt Gun chipping. The paints were put in a very small percelain tray I use as palette and was only used when decently dried to an almost sticky consistency, then I used some small sponge, actually, just the little sponge/foam thingy you find in each model blister, cut to size a bit. then dip it slightly and dab it off on some cloth untill almost fully dry and the I went to work.







    Shoulder Pad




    I especially likt this photo, taken with a very short shutter time, looks almost like you might find in a display case in a dark exhibit somewhere...

  • SebastianPSebastianP171 Posts: 0Member
    Armor colors: metallic red and gold = Iron Man... though you really should be building an assault marine with twin powerfists in that case.

    Also, the coffee machine is actually not an item I use for myself, mostly - it's there so I can make a cuppa when I have guests. It's also useful for making proper tea, though mostly I toss two bags in a huge mug of water and microwave it for three minutes instead. With the amount of sugar I pour into the stuff it's hard to tell good blends from bad.

    Your marine looks to be coming along nicely. How much work was it prepping the parts, and what are you using for glue? Never built a resin kit in my life, I've got a dozen or so parts for one of my bigger aircraft courtesy of a special edition boxing that I haven't used yet, and that's about it.

    My real-world modeling is getting another go as well right now, as I need to thin out the number of boxes and loose sprues laying around the room. I've got at least forty kits going in 1/72 alone, with another two dozen divided between 1/700 ships and 1/48 aircraft. My kits don't go in a stash for a rainiy day when I bring them home, they go on the table for basic assembly.... I spent this evening doing an Indiana Jones impression, battling (small) monsters and trying to find all the pieces for some of my jets. I'm still two pieces short, but that's for a total of seven kits and I have some idea where to look for the last ones. Once its safe though, the vacuum cleaner is going to have a real feast...


  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
    Arch! Iron Man, nonono the red and gold is Blood Angels fluff all the way, although a Marine with two power fists... I must admit, the idea of buying another marine after this one and making it a kickass conversion is very, very, very tempting... Making this Marine and the general act of airbrushing and detailing almost feels like a Japanese zen therapy, like making a Haiku, or meticulously mutilating a tree into a Bonzai or scraping a pebble rock garden, quite soothing...

    If you're into tea, you should definitely get a Turkish tea kettle, looks like double kettle with a bigger below and a smaller on top. I swear you never tasted tea until you drink it like that, made properly. (Although I too am guilty of brewing the odd concoction now and then).

    Prepping the mini went ok, the Guys at Forgeworld took care of the biggest flash and mold lines. Some scraping and sanding was needed here and there. then every part was carefully washed with soapy water to get rid of the greasy product they use help separate mold from model. This is important with resin models as they are produced less on an 'industry' level but more on a 'crafts' level of technology.
    For the little parts I used just superglue as glue but for the big parts, (so far only sticking the feet under the legs) I used a high-grade two-component glue from Pattex. It looks like two superglue bottles stuck side-by-side, the two components mix in the special little nozzle and comes out as a super strong glue. Beware when using this, the extreme strength of the glue means the nozzle is shut tight when dried (luckily it comes with several nozzles). That glue is strong enough to glue the hand of that annoying collaegue to the back end of a departing truck and he's not getting off unless with help from a surgeon or power tool...

    Wow, looks like you can build your own scratch built Star Destroyer with that amount of bits lying about! Sounds like fun mate! I really miss having a decent 'dirty' work desk when I can just let everything like about until needed or wanted... Every guy needs his 'den', far away from any cleaning-inclined female... Yarr!
  • GuerrillaGuerrilla514 HelsinkiPosts: 2,710Administrator
    This is awesome. :)

    I never was any good with scale models. All I ended up with were sad pieces of twisted plastic and glue. Painting only made them worse.

    In retrospect my failures in model building are probably one of the main reasons I started doing 3d. :p
    Comco: i entered it manually in the back end
    Join our fancy Discord Server!
  • SebastianPSebastianP171 Posts: 0Member
    Hehe. I know that feeling. My first kits are best not spoken about, and I regularly have to junk kits because I've messed them up beyond any reasonable fixing. That gets *really* expensive.

    3D modeling has a number of advantages - it doesn't take up any extra space in the room, there's nothing to spill all over the place (except Coke), no smelly paints or glues (I swear I was high as a kite yesterday from assembling ordnance for my aircraft), you don't have to worry about cutting too deeply or busting up your fingertips (all hail the mighty CTRL-Z command!), and no brushstrokes! All this, and you also don't have to choose a single pose and loadout, you get to choose which one for each shot...

    On the other hand, you can't pick a 3D model up and zoom it around the room... And kits make for good reference material for shapes in many cases. :-)


  • BinkermanBinkerman0 Posts: 0Member
    I'm liking the Paint job alot ... Legs, Torso & Backpack looking sweet :thumb:, the last pic (darker one of the Legs) looks cool :cool:, .. You should save that type of pic for when you complete him, ... I'm actually going to do that Arm & Leg Armour for my CG version of the Blood Angel, to finish him off ...
    Meph wrote: »
    That glue is strong enough to glue the hand of that annoying collaegue to the back end of a departing truck and he's not getting off unless with help from a surgeon or power tool...

    Be sure to Video it, and post Online, .. Entitled >> Demo Reel for the Hollywood Stuntman's Association :D ...

  • DCBDCB171 Posts: 0Member
    Nice work Meph. I haven't seen the salt technique before, although I was never big on heavy weathering myself.
  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
    Thanks guys!

    Hehehe, it seems that most people into 3D always had a background with physical models to some extent, funny how that is. With me it started with regular military models, then around 12 I switched to WH40K miniatures, which in turn led me into Graphic Design in college, which resulted in my discovery and subsequent obsession with 3D Studio max 9 years ago. And now back to physical models, 20 odd years on... the circle is round!:D

    I must say, the absence of an undo button, separate layers and backup saves is proving to be an interested sensation again. Action have more consequences that just mere time or partial rebuils. ****-up and its give-up and try to save the model with paint stripper... which is a scary option to be avoided by all costs.

    During the course of the project, if there's a certain element or technique that you'd like explained, just ask and I'd be happy to elaborate.

    Also, Binkerman, the pictures that came for the camera itself are of a resolution of 3264x2448, so if you want some HQ- reference material... ;)
  • BinkermanBinkerman0 Posts: 0Member
    Back in my physical modelling days ... I was edging towards doing total scratch builds mostly for Star Wars, and if I didn't get into 3D, I think I would have got quite serious building larger scaled replicas ...

    But I stopped Physical Model building due to life changes and a few years passed ... Then got into CG Modelling and basically never returned to physical models ... I miss it, and enjoyed my time doing that stuff .. but don't miss the mess or fumes ... though I still visit scratch building sites and seen some amazing models .... I always get tempted to return to it, but know that won't happen due to RL these days ....

    Though never really knew much about Warhammer back then ... Its only in recent years towards the end of 2006 that I started taking an interest in Warhammer 40K with 'Dawn of War' for the PC, ... is when I got hooked and wanted to do CG Models from that Universe .... CG modelling is just an extension for any ex-physical model builders so they can still get their FIX :D ..... as you still retain that eye for detail and getting things to look as accurate as possible ... plus, as some of the guys have already mentioned, .. is much more forgiving if mistakes are made, ... a few clicks or revert back to an earlier save, and you're back in business, ... but for Physical stuff, ... you get one shot, ... mistakes can be very time consuming to correct .... and always appreciate the work I see Online when it comes to physical models, ....

    So I get a big kick out of watching you tackle this Space Marine :cool: !!
    Meph wrote: »
    Also, Binkerman, the pictures that came for the camera itself are of a resolution of 3264x2448, so if you want some HQ- reference material... ;)

    Cheers Meph !! :cool:, ... I may take you up on that when I get back to the BA Marine :thumb: ...

  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
    Thanks mate!

    Here's some progress on the marine. I don't want to take it too fast as I'm waiting for some clear waterslide print paper I've ordered do I can add some custom made decals to the armour so they can get covered by further weathering.

    What's happed since last time:
    -I highlighted the bottom edge of almost every chip on the armour, adding a very suble sense of more depth.
    -Coated the model with light coat of sating varnish to provide a smooth layer for the oil paints. The coat also helps to tie the highlighting colour graduations together, smoothing the overall effect.
    -Then I mixed some black oil paint with a good amount of thinner, in this case modeling odourless turpentine; and I carefully applied it to the armour lines and details. The cool thing with the oil paint is that you can casually and carfully wipe away and smooth and smudges you make. The thinned oil paint is incredible when applied to grooves as the oil/turpentine mix on the varnish undercoat literally draws itself into the grooves like an alien symbiote.
    Sadly I overmixed the black with just a little too much turpentine so the pigment is not 100% evenly spread.
    That can easilly be rectified though with just a second pass with a different mix.
    Also, some detailing needs to be smoothed out a bit.(the chest eagle for instance). Luckily oil paint is great at that. I painted the model yesterday evening and now it's been tough-dry since a long while and I can still easily manipulate the paint with some cloth or a dry drybrush. Hard parts can always be softened up by first gently misting on some turpentine with the airbrush.

    The use of the oil paint also gave a very soft sheen to the surfaces but that will be gone after the next steps.

    Once I receive the decal paper I'll seal the oil paint with another light coat of varnish to be able to work with the decals and water-based materials instead of oil-. After the decals have been placed and sealed I can continue with further weathering, adding rust and oil stains/smears.

  • Lee80Lee80192 Posts: 458Member
    looking sweet Meph. Btw, thanks for the dreadnought pics... gonna make great refs for my project. :) Could you get a couple of shots of the back of the dreads?
  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
    Sure thing mate. My camera was still nearby, so here ya go, some High Res goodness. :D

    If you want some other angles, don't hesitate. ;)

  • alpha_omegaalpha_omega0 Posts: 0Member
    Hey Meph! Great thread, mate! I too used to do a lot of model building and kit bashing in my more youthful days, and it's always great to see someone doing a WIP on a physical model.

    I hadn't ever come across the salt trick either - its very cool.... the weathering is looking terrific!! Keep 'em coming! :thumb:
  • DCBDCB171 Posts: 0Member
    Nice reference shots Meph. They might come in handy if I ever resurrect the dreadnought I started on years ago.
  • Lee80Lee80192 Posts: 458Member
    Thanks Meph. I'm hoping to be able to put these to good use really soon.
  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member
    Thanks guys.

    I've done some small paint test on my test-cardboard to try something out for the eyes. On the cardboard the eye is a little under double the size of the actual eye but I think i could pull it off. Next to it is some small screen test to see what might be possible on the little arm monitors on his left arm.

    The two pics of the helmet are done with photoshop, just to try it out how it looks.
    What do you gusy think, should I make an attempt?

  • DCBDCB171 Posts: 0Member
    Doesn't do much for me personally. You wouldn't expect to see that sort of thing from the outside. But hey, whatever floats your boat. ;)
  • MephMeph171 Posts: 0Member

    Well, that puts my feet back on the ground. :D

    The thing I wanted to convey is that his HUD just visible behind the glass of the lenzes. I think right now it's an OK idea but it's perhaps a tad too busy (the little dots and markings). Perhaps I'll try applying more glazes of green on the test cardboard, building up layer by layer to fade it out and give it more depth. It's still in testing stages and I'm not going to put something so drastic on the miniature before being absoluteky sure that it has the desired look.

    In the meantime some slow progress. I received the waterslide inkjet print paper and oh boy, this opens up perspectives. The preliminary results were satisfying, considering my printer is 10 years old... I scanned a decal sheet at high res, blew up a Blood Angels insigna and after two testprints the third one was the right size. The print came out a bit crackled. I don't know if this is due to the age of my printer (but recent cartridges) or just due to the nature of the paper, i'll have to test that on another printer. The best would eb laser printing but I'd need laser-specific waterslide paper then.

    After the print, I needed to seal the decal with some satin varnish spray to make it waterproof and then I went to work with Micro Sol and Micro Set and the result is pretty satisfying, considering it's the very first time I'm using home-made decals. Right now some edges are still visible but after some more treatments with Micro Sol will sove this. then i can continue with the weathering.

    Oh, and ignore the glossiness of the decal at the moment that will be gone after another coating of satin varnish before doing further weatehring.

    Also I shot some comparisson shots so you can truly appreciate the size of this thing. ;)

  • Captain ShrikeCaptain Shrike0 Posts: 0Member
    that model is pretty big, yeah. but then that's forgeworld for ya.
    That colour scheme is good. great use of decals. better than i could do - can't even free-hand my raven guard's insignia.
    keep it up!
Sign In or Register to comment.