Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Valkryie WIP How To: Simple Weathering

I wanted to do something different from my desert camo for this, I decided on a light grey for the navy and picked up an army painter spray: Uniform Grey. Its final colour is nice and it sprays on uniformly, smoothly and thinly so no detail is lost. I set to line highlighting and it was frankly very boring looking. Not wanting to do striped camo's etc. I went for something that would keep the overall look while giving you something to look at close up. HEAVY weathering.

Here I'll talk about three methods I used to weather this up:

1st: (Gryphonne Sepia)Wash rust/oil stains:

This is about the easiest way you can add a bit more detail to your units so long as they have a light colour. If theyre darker dry devlan mud or a thinned down snakebite leather/mechrite red mix.

The idea here is to take just a little of the wash colour on your brush and then create dripping stains from areas that might rust or be heavily oiled: bolts, bolted panels, underhanging ledges, etc. Just take a little time to think about where this should be used and I'd generally suggest its a less is more technique. If you wanted to get serious you could use one colour for rust and another for oil in different areas. You can't get easier than this!

2nd Aged Chips:

The idea here is to give the look of small chips where the metal has aged and discoloured. This is underhighlighted to give the impression of light bouncing off the paint under the chip. (Sadly I only worked that out after a bit and my wings have upside down highlights. Still hopefully no-one will look close eh :D)

Above is a rear wing. I'm going to take you through the steps I used to build up these three weathering techniques to give a beaten/used/poorly maintained look. Its got a tiny bit of gryphonne sepia under its flaps' joints. I decided not to use much here as I've got lots elsewhere.

First up is the lower highlights: Take your highlight colour (for me astronomican grey) and draw smiley faces all over your armour plates avoiding the edges (they're for the next technique). Don't worry if theyre a little thick when you paint your next colour you'll paint over them a little.

Paint scorched brown lines using the smiley faces as a guide. Try and cover the thicker highlights so you are left with a very thin constant thickeness line highlight.

For the larger chips go in with a 50/50 scorched brown/chaos black mix to add a darker centre to your corroded patch. You can add a little boltgun metal to some of the very large chips to give the impression they're semi aged or perhaps recently re-chipped.

3 Edge chips and scratches:

Here you want to scratch up your edges, perfect for covering up where your line highlights have got a bit thick! These represent recent damage and continuously worn areas that don't have time to corrode before being re-scratched.

Using a thin or spread out beat up brush feather some of the armour edges with charadon granite. (I moved to the tip because the pic of this step didn't come out right!) I'd recommend not coving all of every edge I went for some of all the forward edges of my plane. If you were doing something orky you could perhaps go overboard and use this instead of edge highlighting your stuff.

Using the same technique feather boltgun metal inside the charadon granite leaving a rim of this left. If you wanted to further this technique you could try line highlighting outside this similar to the technique above but given I was trying to be quick I didn't bother! You can also do some of this on your panels where they're likely to be weathered from use around door handles, where feet will have walked or just occasional random scratches but I'd reconmmend not going overboard with these.

I'll leave you with my wing sections to give you an idea of what an area targeted with lots of all of these techniques ends up looking like. The aim is to try to build up lots of different weathering and colours to break up an otherwise dull and uniform scheme and add a touch of stylized realisim rather than everything looking factory fresh. I hope these help/give you some ideas, they're just how I like to do things!


  1. Well done mate looks very cool, and I like how you have explained how to do it.

    For my oil stains what I do for the area's I want, I go over the area with Brown ink, once that has dried I then do 2:1 mix of Brown ink and Black ink thined down with Klear (which you can get from a supermarket), which acts as a thinner and a gloss to give it that wet looking shine. You can see this on my current project the Thunderbolt around the fuel cap on the main body.

    I do like the idea of your chipped paint work. Does it take you ages to do on large models? As the process does seem to take quite along time. I myself use the sponges out of the blister packs and use Charadon granite for my light chip work. For my heavy chip work I use Boltgun Metal, and if I want a rusty type look then I will use thinned down Brown ink.

    If you would like me to give you a detailed explanation on how to do it then let me know. But your models do look very realistic and really cool with your techniques and I will try it on some of my smaller models.

  2. Thanks for your interest as ever Dave. I tend to seal my models with matte varnish so probably couldn't use your Klear method although I could go back over with some varnish after. I'll give it a try on some engine bits!

    I paint on my chip work as I found I didn't have enough control with the sponge method. Once you've done a little of it to build confidence I think its quite a quick process, especially the edge scratches, as its just repeating the same technique.

  3. Cool no probs mate. I will give your techniques ago at some point as I do like the idea of what you have done. I will let you know how it turns out when I do.

  4. Cool, I look forward to seeing it mate. If you have time to post up some step by step for what you do perhaps you could teach me the way of the sponge!

  5. Fantastic tutorial bud! I always find vehicles difficult to weather/age, and your tutorial makes it seem simple! ta very much! :D

  6. Thanks Harris, glad you could make use of it!

  7. Doing this type of weathering takes a lot of patience, especially on such a large model. I can appreciate this type of work, as this is my favorite method of chipping now.

  8. Its definatly not the fastest way out there to weather. But it is an easy way that requires little skill or technique and no fancy powders/sprays/paints that people might not have to hand!

  9. It works very well, and leaves a rather realistic effect for paint chipping. I also use pigment powders washes to weather my armor.

  10. Im into powders too but ill put up stuff on them some other time. This post seemed long enough!