Horses come in quite a variety of colors and patterns, and I found a lot of good reference material to use for them. All of my old horse photos went missing on my hard drive, so I downloaded a bunch of new ones and made a new reference picture to use for horses.
After looking through the range of colors, I decided to stick with the colors that are mostly brown. I base coated these models with the black primer and brown spray that I used with the Fae. That base coat would add a lot of steps if I decided to paint some of these models white or gray. I also don't want to paint too many of these with spotted or painted coats. I know the book describes them as mostly spotted, but I want to get these done and on the table. I can always add other colors and patterns later.
That means that I will be painting my figures using mostly these colors.
|My main colors for the Liberi|
The first color is a dark brown. This is actually darker than the base color, so I will need to wash the model with a darker color and build up with some Americana Raw Umber and Games Workshop Scorched Brown.
The second color is going to be the predominant color in the warband. It's closest to the base color. I'll build the color for this one up with Games Workshop Dark Flesh and Citadel Vermin Fur.
The third color is fairly light, so it will make a nice contrast with the others. For that color, I'll build up from Citadel Snakebite Leather to Games Workshop Desert Yellow.
Finally, the fourth color is similar to the second, but a little lighter. I'll build that color predominantly with Games Workshop Bestial Brown and Bestial Brown mixed with a bit of Dwarf Flesh or Bleached Bone.
Since the torso follows the color of the horse part of the centaur, I'll build up the highlights on the torso the same as the rest of the body, but bring them up a few more stages. That will also make the torsos stand out a bit and draw the eye.
Before I started painting, I separated the models in the warband into groups by the color I will use on each. Group 1 is composed of the Chieftain, one of the Shootists, and a Cheveyo. Group 2 has the Shaman, a Cheveyo, two Stickers, and four Shootists. Group 3 has a Shootist, a Cheveyo, and two Stickers. Group 4 has all the rest - a Cheveyo, a Shootist, and three Stickers.
I started painting with Group 2, since it has the most figures. I highlighted all of the flesh on the figure with a thinned layer of Games Workshop Dark Flesh. Then I added a second highlight using thinned Citadel Vermin Fur. The Vermin Fur went on a little thin and left a lot of streaks, so I went back over and did a second coat with the Vermin Fur. You can see the difference in the following pictures.
|After first highlight coat|
|After second highlight coat|
I also used the Vermin Fur and drybrushed the hair and tails of these models. Next I added some Citadel Dwarf Flesh to the Vermin Fur and did a highlight on the torsos, arms and faces of the models. Finally, I washed the hair and fur with Games Workshop Devlan Mud wash.
Although I won't get to painting them for a while, I also washed the bodies and hair on the models in Group 1 with the Devlan Mud. This will give the wash plenty of time to dry so I can see if it will darken them enough to give some shading to the Raw Umber. If not, I'll add some other washes to them until I get the shading I need.
|The first stages of painting on Group 2|
When you're painting a group of models a lot of different colors, there's a risk that you will make them too individual and the units will lack coherency. I'm avoiding that problem by limiting myself to only a few variations in the main colors. Also, by painting these variations as groups, I can keep the warband consistent within each group. I'll reinforce the consistency later by painting the equipment, weaponry, and decorations using the same colors throughout the whole warband. I'll also reinforce it by basing everything the same.
Next up, I'll highlight the flesh on the other groups and do some more work on the terrain.