That time I spoke to my old chum Tim, aka TACPainting aka Tyrant Mithras, who had picked up a Supreme Guardian and I cunningly talked him into writing up his experience painting it, because damn that guy knows his way around an airbrush and some paint pots.
Behold his wisdom.
Tim: All alliteration aside, Privateer Press with Black Anchor Heavy Industries have released the most Exalted statue of them all, (sorry Zaal) with the Supreme Guardian. It’s not often I pre-order a model but this was an exception, I absolutely love this model! So, I did the thing – I gave them my dollars, painted a statue and then a lost Australian asked me to tell the good people of Lost Hemisphere about it.
This resin kit fits together extremely well and comes together in a flash and without much flash. I painted the model in a single assembly using Formula P3 paints but didn’t connect it to the base. Once I had it all assembled, it was primed in black undercoat and ready for the airbrushing stage.
After priming in black, the first thing I did was an all over airbrush of Thamar Black. At this stage I chose to block in areas I wanted to be Skorne red (not red lacquered) and others obsidian black. The airbrushed areas were done with these recipes: –
Basecoat – 1:1 parts Exile Blue, Umbral Umber (keeping the hue as neutral as possible and not too blue or brown) and just a touch of Skorne Red. This is the darkest value used for the red.
Highlight 1 – Skorne Red airbrushed, keeping some of the basecoat visible
Highlight 2 – 1:1 parts Skorne Red and Ember Orange, concentrating on the raised areas of red
Highlight 3 – Ember Orange. This colour really kicks into gear when you see it contrasted against the basecoat and gives the mid-tones a nice pop.
We’ve got our basecoat established with Thamar Black, as with the red it’s all highlights from here
Highlight 1 – 1:1 mix of Thamar Black and Coal Black. This is quite a subtle effect, but it does introduce some more saturated hues and sketches out where the highlights will go. It’s important to leave plenty of pure Thamar black in the shadows.
Highlight 2 – Menoth White Base added to Highlight 1, about a 1:3 ratio. This highlight begins to pick out more raised areas. I did 2 rounds of this highlight adding a little more Menoth White Base the second time.
There are a bunch of cracks sculpted into these areas which we’ll comeback to and sharpen up later but we can call the airbrushing done *thumbs up emoji*
The remainder of the model was painted using the two-brush blending technique. If you’re new to this, check out Dallas’ video on the Privateer Press Prime YouTube channel. The order each of the elements of the model are listed roughly follows the order they were painted or at least how I would have done it had I thought it through a little better. First on the brushwork chopping block, the gold!
Cold Steel was applied to all of the gold areas which gives a shiny foundation and has coverage for days. There’s a ton of gold to do, so have a good supply of coffee on hand.
Basecoat – Rhulic gold. Two thin coats minimum.
Shade 1 – Molten Bronze mixed with Brown Ink, two-brush blended (2BB) quite extensively. It’s not a huge value shift and ended up applying quite a bit of this.
Shade 2 – Brown Ink, 2BB to refine the shades in Shade 1
Shade 3 – Wash with Army Painter Strong Tone. It’s a great way to dark line tricky areas and hard edges. Best to use it somewhat sparingly.
Highlight 1 – Solid Gold
Highlight 2 – Solid Gold and Radiant Platinum, just for sharpest points and areas that will directly catch plenty of light.
Now we’re up to essentially painting the cracks and damage sculpted now that the airbrush has done its job. The recesses of the cracks were painted Thamar Black and Coal Black at roughly a 3:1 ratio. The edges should look much more saturated than the airbrushing stage and were highlighted using: –
Highlight 1 – 1:1 mix of Coal Black and Menoth White Base. It’s a good idea to have some of the highlight mix from the airbrushing stage handy too to smooth out any transitions that may not look quite right.
Highlight 2 – 1:1 mix of Coal Black and Menoth White Highlight
Highlight 3 – Menoth White Highlight, just a dot here and there for visual interest on the sharpest points.
Skorne red (again)
This follows a similar process to the black; the cracks are filled in using our darkest red value (see above) and the edges highlighted with Ember Orange and blended into the red midontes. The metal rivets around the upper portion of the legs were also darklined using the red basecoat.
Green flames (sketch)
The flames on the back piece and eyes were sketched in using Menoth White Highlight and Thamar Black. The idea behind this is it sets the value (light and dark) which will be later glazed in Green Ink and Yellow Ink. This is the general process for the flames: –
Basecoat – 1:4 mix of Menoth White Highlight and Thamar Black
Shade – Gradually blend more Thamar Black as you go higher up on the flames and smoke
Highlight – Blend Menoth White Highlight added to basecoat closer to the flames
The recesses of the flames should be brighter than the outer areas which look smokier, play around with it and repeat until you’re happy with the results. Also paint a dot of Menoth White Highlight into the centre of the eyes.
There’s not a whole lot of metal on this so its pretty quick to do: –
Basecoat – Pig Iron
Shade 1 – Greatcoat Grey
Shade 2 – 1:1 Mix of Battlefield Brown and Exile Blue. You may need to add a little more brown as the blue can take over pretty quick, if in doubt go slightly more brown but try to keep it grey.
Highlight – Quicksilver
At this point the flames and eyes can be glazed using a mix of Green Ink and Yellow Ink, areas hit by the light from the flames can also be glazed this way. Remember to keep the amount of ink to a minimum, this should just tint the areas without flooding or changing the values.
Wrapping the painting up, it’s just the gems and fur dealy on the pommel. Let’s gooo!
To start off, these are all blocked in with Sanguine Base and Thamar Black.
Basecoat – Khador Red Base, leaving a dark outline.
Shade 1 – Blend Sanguine Base into the upper portion of the gem
Shade 2 – Apply a darker shade using Sanguine Base, Thamar Black and a drop of Turquoise Ink
Highlight 1 – Blend Khador Red Highlight onto the opposite side of the gem
Highlight 2 – Add a dot of Menoth White Highlight to the darkest portion of the gem
Basecoat – Menoth White Highlight
Shade 1 – Menoth White Base
Shade 2 – Cryx Bane Highlight
Highlight – Reclaim some areas with menoth White Highlight as needed.
Tim paints amazing things. I remember when he was much shorter and had no idea about the wider world of gaming, and now look at him. His Supreme Guardian is Supreme, and probably smells like nachos. Bonus points to any opponents who ask to sniff it…
What’s your favourite Black Anchor Heavy Industries piece, and has Tim’s Guardian inspired you to paint yours?!?