Glynn & Kathy Greenwood (

Primer is necessary because it helps the paint to stick (and god knows the sickly thin Games Workshop stuff needs all the help it can get!).

It also improves colour and light refraction in bright-coloured paint jobs, but don't get caught up buying "super model primer" or other such nonsense. Medium-quality white, black and grey matt/flat auto paint will do just as well.

Use them like this:

  • White - bright models with very little metal armour showing
  • Black - dark models or models with lots of exposed metal armour
  • Grey - short cut to large areas of grey greatcoats for example

Note for Americans: Don't use Krylon paints for this. It's too bitty and flakey to be of much use.

Jeff Hancock (

I must respectfully disagree with my fellow gamer.

I have used Krylon Sandable Primer exclusively for 15mm figures, with no flaking and no loss of detail. However, my experience with auto primer has resulted in prolonged drying times and loss of detail. Krylon uses particles that I've found to be as fine as any spray primer from Floquil or The Armory.

Look for Krylon "sandable" primer, not "auto" primer, and use multiple light coats to achieve good coverage.

Ken Hill (
My technique in a nutshell...

  1. I glue the base of my figure to wooden dowel, so I don't have to hold the figure by its base while I'm painting it.
  2. I prime my figure with black automobile primer - it adheres well to raw metal because that's what it was designed to do.
  3. I paint the larger areas first, and work my way to the smaller areas on the miniature.
  4. I usually do a drybrush method with 3 or more colors - starting with the darkest color first, adding layers until I can see a visible trace of color. I then go on to the brighter colors and get my brush even drier. This way, the recessed areas are dark and the raised area are highlighted.
  5. For small detail, I use solid colors (most of the time, I do use a second highlight color).
  6. I use the cheap Ceramcoat water-based acrylics, with a liquid extender to keep my paint from drying before I'm done with it. I also put a glass marble in the paint bottle, to use as an agitator to mix the paint around.
  7. If anyone knows of other techniques or more about washes, I would like to know! I could always use more techniques!

Last Updates
24 October 1997page first published
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