Fun with Rot…, pt. 2

My experiments trying to create a convincing crackle effect on Plague Marine armour using the new Citadel Technical Paint Agrellan Earth continue, as do my attempts to rediscover the joy of painting. One of these goals seems to be working out quite nicely, the other one…not so much. So, what are we looking at:

As you remember, I painted a first test model, trying to bring out a rather pronounced crackle effect on the models armour. It worked, but not as well as I would have liked:

Crackle Plague Marine (1)

So I figured I would try a slightly different approach for the next model in line: Paint Agrellan Earth – undiluted – on areas of the entirely unpainted model and hope for a more convincing crackle effect to set in, then add all the remaining paint on top, trying to preserve the effect as much as possible.

First I had to come up with another model to use as a guinea pig, though, so I kitbashed a Plague Marine, using some of the more decrepit bitz I had lying around. And then, I added Agrellan Earth on top. Here’s the effect, after a bit of waiting:

Crackle Plague Marine (12)
As you can see, the crackle effect was far more pronounced this time around. So far, so good, right?

In principle, yes. But it is rather hard to retain the effect through multiple layers of paint without covering it up. While it worked until after undercoating, the following layers of paint destroyed some of the subtler touches. I tried to counter that by adding a bit of Agrellan Earth on top again, but it performed just as unevenly as before:

Crackle Plague Marine (14)
Apart from that, I once again used several simple weathering effects (as well as a generous helping of Nurgle’s Rot) to make the model as disgusting and decayed as possible. Here’s the result:

Crackle Plague Marine (20)
Crackle Plague Marine (19)
Crackle Plague Marine (18)
Crackle Plague Marine (17)
Crackle Plague Marine (16)

Crackle Plague Marine (15)
From a crackle perspective, the effect is still not as pronounced as I would have liked. Nevertheless, I really like the overall look of the model — and Nurgle’s Rot once again performed admirably, as you can see, with green goo leaking from the model’s armour in many places. This guy may not have crackled as much as I had wanted him to, but he surely looks like a follower of Nurgle: As a matter of fact, I can almost see myself painting a small squad of Plague Marines, just for fun, crackle or not crackle.

Here are the two test models I have completed so far:

Plague Marines (1)
And a colour comparison with Nurglite champion Malchius Blight, completed as part of an earlier project:

Plague Marines (2)
As you can see, the colour is somewhat different, with Malchius much closer to the Nurgle Terminator Lord I build as a smaller side project:

Nurgle Terminator (13)
Nurgle Terminator (14)
You can learn more about this guys here and here.

Tell you what, seeing how this is turning into a bit of a Nurgle showcase, let’s throw in some of my really ancient Plague Marines from the 90s, complete with my vintage paintjobs, trying hard to emulate the “official” ‘Eavy Metal paintjobs from second edition 40k:

Retro Plague Marines
I still love that icon bearer model, by the way — maybe I should strip the paint from it and repaint it in the “modern” style?

Anyway, here’s one of those old guys with his “younger” brother:

Plague Marine comparison
I somehow can’t help feeling immensely fond of those simplistic early 90s plastics — at the very least, they have aged far better than their loyalist counterparts: Just take a look at the Space Marines that came with the 2nd edition starter box!

But wait, where does all of this leave us with regard to the crackle effect?

Well, I believe I will have to give a dedicated crackle medium a go next, maybe the one offered by Vallejo will do? I could also use Agrellan Earth and use washes and shades to do the actual colouring, as some of you suggested after my last post.

In any case, this experimentation has been quite a lot of fun so far, and definitely a much needed boost for my painting modjo!

As always, let me know what you think! Thanks for looking and stay tuned for more!

13 Responses to “Fun with Rot…, pt. 2”

  1. Agrellan Earth is a great effect paint but it’s a bitch, too.
    You have to use a lot of it, even when it looks like to much. There is a lot of water in this paint and when it drys up, there is no thick paint, only a thin, crackled layer.
    I used it at my last miniature, e.g. and I had a very strong crackle effect:

    • Agreed – the lack of predictability really only makes it useful for models where the paintjob shouldn’t be all that clean and precise in the first place — hence my decision to go for Plague Marines πŸ˜‰

      That daemon of yours is beautiful, though! Or rather, the opposite of beautiful, but I suppose you get my point πŸ˜‰

  2. Hi Kraut! When i read your first psot about nurgle painting, I just say “I want to give this a go too!!” so I bought the paint “agrelan earth”, build a suitable (and crazy ) model to test crackling effect and start painting yesterday’s evening: I primed the model paint the armour with agrelan (with undiluted paint and a heavy hand on some part) and wait for some hours to let it dry… The crakling effect is just what I want it to be so this morning I started painting with washes (only washes on the agrelan parts)…

    I keep you attuned for final result and maybe some pictures!!

    keep trying!

    PS: well your nurglite are really nice btw!!

  3. I’m with Logan on this: to be able to paint over Agrellan Earth and keep the texture, you have to put quite a thick layer of it. Really thick. Then the cracks are pronounced enough that they don’t get clogged by paint you layer on them. I experimented with this on my latest conversion.

    As for the alternative you mentioned, I have a bottle of Vallejo crackle medium and I must say it was a sad waste of money. I tried different things to get it to work, but every time it had very poor effect or none at all.

    And, of course: nice Plague Marines!

    • Hrm, seems I underestimated the whole crackle thing πŸ˜‰ So far, it seems like the only two options are “very noticeable and not all that believable” and “very believable and not all that noticeable” — a bit of a Catch 22 there πŸ˜‰ Or you can go and put massive amounts of work into this, of course, but that’s not exactly my forte…

      Anyway, thanks for the constructive feedback, Ana!

  4. Dude the whole nurgle thing is looking good, I love your blog, it keeps me interested in the hobby and it has also inspired me to use up some of my old space wolf minis as khorne berzerkers. Cos let’s face it, the sons of are almost there aren’t they.

    If you wanted to check.them out this is my blog.

    • Cheers, mate! And thanks for the link! You have a very nice paint scheme going for these traitorous wolves of yours!

      I agree that SW parts are exceptionally well suited to Khornate conversions. And you are quite right, the wolves would have been the next obvious choice for Khorne — maybe they would have been, had Angron not proved to be the more malleable tool during the Night of the Wolf?

      • Thanks dude. Yeah my thoughts exactly. Keep up the good work. ill be keeping an eye on here for more of your Nurgle experiments for when I paint my Nurgle Dark angels/Raven wing. I’ve never painted anything Nurgly and if I’m honest I class myself as a decent painter but the thought of painting something Nurgle is quite daunting for me lol. Oh well, nothing ventured nothing gained I suppose.

      • Cheers, mate! You should definitely try painting some Nurglite stuff, though: It can be enormously liberating, and you get to pass off experiments gone wrong as the look you intended in the first place πŸ˜‰

        Seriously though, I’ve felt drawn to Nurgle every now and then, especially when painting other stuff starts to become a chore. Like I said, it seems to serve as some kind of “palate cleanser” for me πŸ˜‰

  5. Hi. How did you achieve the rust effects? Yours is some of the best I’ve seen. I’m currently painting a Chaos warband and the rust effects you’ve got here would work perfectly for what I had in mind. Love your work mate.

    • The recipe is actually really simple! One, just paint parts that you want to look particularly rusted in brown to begin with, then stipple on metallic scratches and highlights to add some depth and show where, for instance, a rusty blade may still have a sharp edge.

      The other thing is to use really (!) thinned-down red-brown paint (I use Vermin Brown, but any slightly orange red-brown should do) and paint it into the recesses. Just let the watery part dry off, and the residue will look like pretty realistic rust.

      Hope this helos!

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