[Guide] Painting a Glow Effect

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[Guide] Painting a Glow Effect

Post#1 » Jul 02 2009 02:07

Painting a Glow Effect
Compiled & Edited by Support to include information by Shas'Ui Faol & Shas'O Eiglepulper

The following are methods for applying glow effect to your Tau craft or weapons. Information supplied here is by avid hobbyists like yourself in an effort to encourage the growth of painting skills on Advanced Tau Tactica.

The Glow effect is generally referring to the splash over colour a light source projects over nearby objects and surfaces. However, whilst in some cases it can become remarkably involved and lavish exercise in brush skills, Tau hobbyists usually require something quick and effective for their units of the line. Reserving the special variations for their most favoured pieces.

The following are straightforward guides to quite remarkable results :

Shas'Ui Faol's Method (For Blue Glow Effect):

    The paints I use in order form dark to light. All are blue save the final color which is skull white.
    Midnight Blue
    Regal Blue
    Enchanted Blue
    Ice Blue
    Skull White

    Start of by painting the engine vanes midnight blue
    Next move in just a bit and paint Regal Blue making sure to leave some of the midnight blue showing
    Next follow up with Enchanted blue moving in just a bit leaving some regal blue showing
    After that use Enchanted Blue in the same way moving in just a bit leaving the other blues showing
    Finally paint a small line of Ice Blue
    Then a dot of skull white in the center

Very simple, much like layering. More advanced blending could be performed by making your darkest blue lighter through adding lighter blues, but this is straightforward and it looks good.

Shas'O Eiglepulper's Additional Method (For Blue Glow Effect):

I then used a 1:1 water/wash ratio of Asurmen Blue Citadel Wash over the painted sections, followed by a 0.5:1 water/wash of Vallejo Transparent Blue to get that sapphire colour going. Here's a close-up of the engine vanes. Ignore the mould lines, they aren't really there - honest.


The same theory was used to give an impression of a plasma reactor in the engine pod itself when looking through the exhaust manifold. Unfortunately this picture was taken indoors and so the lighting isn't as good and the effects are lessened because of this:


When seen up close the layering on the engine vanes is painfully obvious, but when seen from further back the effect is rather different.

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Re: [Guide] Painting a Glow Effect

Post#2 » Jul 02 2009 02:48

Additional Images..

As a resource to this topic, I have now included here, several images that I maintain on my own painting folders. These I refer too for getting my head around a glow effect on any particular project I am working on at the time.

Image Image
Purple glow, a blended technique similar to the above. However a very light drybrush is utilised to make the glow edges diffuse more. A similar effect is attempted on the Power Node, but with blue and more stark colour placement. Images courtesy Shas'El Tael.

Image Image
Utlising a more blended and diffused approach, these two pieces are more stark at the centre of the glow then haze out with the appropriate base colour. Images courtesy Gareth & Bruno Rizzo(FR).

Image Image
Further images of Bruno's technique. Additional high end blending and light source technique on an Eldar conversion. Images courtesy Bruno Rizzo(FR) and [Unknown].

I hope this inspires and reveals how far such simple steps can further your painting techniques and skills.

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