Saturday, August 4, 2012

Wrath of Kings Diorama: Part 5

This week was a painting marathon for me, but the Goritsi City is finally finished. I'm going to run through my painting process, and then I've got to get back to work. The miniatures still need to be added to make this a proper "diorama" and this ain't the only table I've been working on...

Remember– I'm putting together a Q&A blog for this table, so feel free to ask any questions in the comments section, and I'll address them all in the coming weeks.

Painting the City

All of the parts for the table have been kept separate for priming and painting. I began by painting black latex paint over all of the exposed foam areas like the stones and bricks. The ground was also painted with the latex to help seal the sand and gravel. After that, I used black spray primer on the rooftops.

To speed up the painting of the stonework, I sprayed Model Masters Panzer Grey lightly over the stone surfaces, including the rocky cliff. Then I hit the rocks and ground in a few places with Model Masters Light Earth spray.

To finish off the stonework I use the following series of drybrushes and washes:

1. Drybrush the stones with GW Shadow Grey.

2. Mix in some GW Bleached Bone, and add another layer of drybrushing.

3. Take this mix to almost straight Bleached Bone, and apply a very light drybrush to highlight the stones.

4. Mix a wash of Shadow Grey, P3 Thamar Black, P3 Coal Black, and water, and paint this into the shadowed areas under the roofs, around the bases and anywhere the highlights are too harsh. Wipe and blot the majority of the wash away with a paper towel to soften the color a little.

5. Once the wash is dry, add a final drybrush of P3 Frostbite on the most raised edges. Apply rust streaks running down from the windows, and rooftops by painting thinned P3 Bloodstone or GW Bestial Brown, and wiping it in a downward motion with your finger.

Here is the table with all of its stonework finished. (This was probably the most time-consuming portion of the painting.)

Next, I painted the doors. This was a simple matter of basecoating the wood with P3 Gun Corps Brown, and the metal with P3 Pig Iron. Once that was dry I washed it all with a mix of GW Brown Ink and P3 Battlefield Brown. A tiny dab of P3 Bloodstone was added to the hinges for a bit of rust.

As I mentioned last time, the holes for the windows were all cut out of the foam, and the resin windows themselves kept separate. This allowed me to liberally drybrush the stones without fear of gumming up the window details, and to paint the windows together in a single batch.

They were hot-glued to a piece of foam core, primed black, and then sprayed with Light Earth. Bleached Bone was drybrushed over them, and then I went through and painted each pane with P3 Khador Red Highlight (or as I like to call it, "orange") and P3 Cygnus Yellow. Some Brown ink was used for shading around the frames, and a final highlight of P3 Menoth White Highlight was added in the corner.

It took a few hours to paint all of the windows, and I was very glad I had the foresight to do it this way rather than painting each one individually while hunched over the table!

The ground was painted with three stages of drybrushing: P3 Bloodstone, P3 Moldy Ochre, and finally Bleached Bone. When painting the ground like this, any streaks or imperfections in the sand can be covered up with static grass and flock but take care around the areas that will be left exposed, like the paths and roadways.

The rocks were drybrushed with a mix of black and Bleached Bone, going successively lighter for the final highlights. The brown spray was allowed to show through in a few places to create some color variety in the rocks.

The timbers on the undersides of the rooftops were basecoated with a 50/50 mix of Bloodstone and Shadow Grey, then lightly drybrushed with Bleached Bone.

The Rooftops were Basecoated with the same mix, but about 60/40 Shadow Grey to Bloodstone. The rooftops were then drybrushed with straight Bloodstone, leaving the darker undercoat showing in the recesses and shadows, and then a final drybrush highlight of Bloodstone and Bleached Bone was applied.

Woodland Scenics static grass was added using wood glue. The grass colors are Medium Green with a few patches of Burnt Grass.

The trees, which had been removed prior to painting, were primed black and then sprayed with a light dusting of Light Earth and Panzer Grey. They were then set in place with hot-glue and dab of super glue after the static grass was set.

The windows were secured in their cut-outs with a hot glue gun.

Final Details

For the clock, I used a clock face from the local craft store (Michael's and A.C. Moore carry these if you happen to have one in your town). I removed all of the gears, and sanded the faux-chrome finish on the frame.

Some rust streaks and weathering were added to the clock face with Brown Ink, and the frame was basecoated with Thamar Black.

Chips in the finish were painted on using Pig Iron, and a bit of rust added with a wash of Bloodstone. The hands were super glued in place.

The clock face was set into the wall in the same manner as the windows.

The elemental's head was sanded and recesses for the eyes were cut out. I wanted it to appear as though the head was rising out of the smoke, so I added some Great Stuff expanding foam around the base and trailing up the sides. Some other smoky tendrils were created as well. All of this work is done on a sheet of insulation foam, making it easy to peel the foam off when dry. (On cardboard or wood, the foam would bond to it and be difficult to remove.)

Once the foam dried, I trimmed it down to fit in the recessed rooftop, and painted it with black latex. This was then sprayed with flat black primer and then given a dusting of Panzer Grey. The eyes were carefully painted with multiple layers of white.

The ominous Goritsi city stands ready to repel all invaders!

I had toyed with the idea of not showing the finished table at all to preserve the surprise for anyone going to Gencon, but decided I just couldn't do that. I will, however, save the majority of the detail shots I took. They will be added to my terrain gallery after Gencon and you'll be able to see every nook and cranny of the table.

If you're going to Gencon, you can see the full display (with miniatures on it) in person at the Cool Mini Or Not booth (1431, 1531, 1631).


  1. Looks amazing (as expected). I love what you did with the clock and will have to remember that if I ever get around to those IK building I have planned.

  2. Wow, just wow. Looks so great. Could you explain how you get a nice finish with the static grass please?

  3. Really awesome work Rob. I won't be at Gencon sadly but I am looking forward to the detail shots. Your mention of a second table has intrigued me too!

  4. Congratulations on completing this wonderful table, Rob. It's just absolutely amazing.

  5. Fantastic work! Thank you for sharing the WIP's throughout the process!

  6. Blown away! Fantastic table!
    The mention of another table has me on the edge of the seat as well! :)


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