Thursday, 14 May 2009

How to - Lava Bases

this is my first how to, hopefully it makes sense. its pretty long for what it is, but i didnt want to miss anything!

1. Get your base… like this. Mine has green stuff in because I'm actually using slotta bases, and as you cant really do it with the big hole in the middle, I've filled it in a couple of days before.

2. Take you modelling putty, and model it onto the base. It doesn’t have to be flat as a pancake, as this is ground that we are modelling. Leave it for one hour to harden slightly.

3. Once you have left your base for an hour, come back to it and decide how you are going to model it. Basically, at this stage we want to cut the lava flow out possibly the most important stage so far. remember that lava does not normally flow round right angles, and that you actually need somewhere for the model to stand that isn’t lava! Even with ceramite shoes you can’t go paddling in molten rock. I tend to use a modelling knife, and trace out the outlines of the flow and cut it out.
4. Once you have done this, and cleaned up the flow area a little, you need to worry the base. Just get the blade of your modeling knife and prod or poke the green stuff with it. Not to much, but just enough to make it look like scared rock, and something that you can dry brush later.
5. Now leave it to set overnight, or at least until it is rock solid. Once it is, undercoat with black. Defiantly black in this instance, and I prefer to spray as it provides more even coverage.

6. After this, dry brush the base with Astronomican Grey.
7. Now for the good bit, where the base starts to take shape. Paint the lava flow with a dark red, I tend to use Mechrite Red and then Scab Red if I have time, to really build up the colours. Don’t worry about the coverage of paint in the middle for these coats, we are going to paint over the centre fairly rapidly.
8. After this, we’re going to use Blood red. At this point I tend to put a little more than I normally would on my painting tile, as we’re going to mix in yellow and gradually build up the colour, I find it useful to have there waiting for me.
9. The next step is to mix in some Sunburst Yellow, to get a nice orange colour. I don’t actually use orange in this process, as because I'm merging through red to white, I feel that it makes a more consistent colour. The most important thing is now not to paint the whole flow, but gradually paint less and less. The centre of the flow will gradually get lighter and lighter whilst the edges of the flow now need to stay darker colours.
10. Next, just mix in more yellow, to get a brighter/lighter orange. Continue to paint just inside the previous colour. Do this twice, just to build up the colour until you get to quite a bright orange colour.

11. Now, switch to Sunburst Yellow. Mix in a tiny amount of the previous orange that you had for the first coat. After this, apply a second coat of pure Sunburst Yellow on top.
12. After this, mix in some skull white with your sunburst yellow. Just paint a tiny amount in the middle, and then follow it up with a line of pure skull white.
13. Finally, tidy up the edge of the base with chaos black, and use matt varnish on the actual flow (nowhere else) and there you have it!


  1. I like it, nice effect.

    Santa Cruz Warhammer

  2. Brilliant tutorial. Thanks for sharing this mate. I really like the different blend of colours, and especially how you have made the lava flow seem more liquid than solid. Great stuff

  3. thank you for you to make me learn more,thank you∩0∩ ........................................

  4. pleasure to find such a good artical! please keep update!! ........................................

  5. nice to know you, and glad to find such a good artical!.........................

  6. Pen and ink is wits plough. .................................................................