Basing miniatures is not everyone’s cup of tea. Some people don’t bother at all, while others simply paint the plastic green or brown. Well, I’m hear to help with a series of posts that will be called Basing Basics. There are loads of wonderful and amazing examples of bases all over the net that utilise advanced techniques and take days to construct. These articles are just going to show you the very (very) basics and maybe we’ll do some more advanced bits and pieces later.
To start with, we’re going to look at sand. You can pick this up at any modelling shop and just cover your bases in it. And there’s nothing wrong with leaving it at that, except that it doesn’t end up looking like sand. I always thought it looked like porridge, so unless your army is battling on Oatius Prime in the Segmentum Cerealus, you need to do a bit of work.
It’s really quick and easy to make sand look like sand and I’m going to use my old Eldar Warlock to help illustrate this. Let’s dive in.
Simple as. Cover your base in an even coating of PVA glue (not too much) and dip your mini into the sand. Leave it to dry and watch the porridge take shape.
Once the sand is dry, using a larger brush, cover the base in a flesh wash. I used Citadel’s Reikland Flashshade. Once all the porridge is covered, leave it to dry thoroughly.
Take an old brush (because the rough sand will knacker the point of a good one) and a sandy coloured paint (this is Citadel’s Zamesi Desert) and dry brush the whole thing. Make sure you let a little of the darker colour come through.
When that layer has dried, mix equal parts Zamesi Desert and Bleached Bone (or equivalents) and dry brush again to highlight. Don’t go over all of it, just a few bits here and there. You only need a tiny bit to bring out a lot more depth.
To finish off, a bit of Dryad Bark (dark brown) around the sides of the base, and you’re done! This last step just makes the whole thing look a little better on a desert table and gets rid of the last bit of bare, black plastic.
Well, how simple was that!? This is a really quick technique (that barely deserves the name) and though you’re not going to win the Crystal Brush with it, it may help your army look a little better on the table top and really add a finishing touch to your minis. Anyway, I hope some of you will find this a bit useful at least – let me know by popping a comment below. Onwards!