Dabbling with dappling
Posted by Martin on July 14, 2007
I’ve moved on to the next figure in the command set and it’s time to paint up General Borstell himself. As benefits a Prussian brigade commander, I’ve decided to give this figure a grey horse. When I started out I had it in mind to give the horse quite a lot of dark grey and black rather than white. Living in the Wiltshire countryside gives me the opportunity to observe many “greys” in the flesh and you’d be surprised how many of them have dark legs, bellies, tails, manes and so on.
I only thing I was sure of was that I wanted the horse to have dark legs but beyond that I wasn’t really certain how things would turn out. So I sat down with five or six paint pots ranging from pure black to pure white and just let things take their course. It was only during an inspection break after the first painting session that I decided to take the plunge and apply some dappling to the hind quarters. So far I’ve only worked on one side of the horse to this level of completion and I’m pleased with the effect. I achieved this by the simple expedient of painting little dots of light grey, white grey and white while trying to avoid overdoing it. I’m now planning to extend the dappling to the shoulder and neck.
Palette for this so far is (all Vallejo Model Colour acrylics):
- Primer and basecoat: black (950).
- First highlight: dark grey (994).
- Second highlight: neutral grey (992).
- Third highlight: light grey (990).
- Fourth highlight: white grey (993).
- Fifth highlight: white (951).
Er, yes, six shades does seem a bit excessive, doesn’t it? But remember, we’re going across the furthest possible range here from black to white, so it takes a lot of intermediary shades to keep the transition smooth enough.
Next steps are a bit more dappling and then “rinse and repeat” on the other side. After that, I’ll tackle the head where I’m planning to give the horse flesh-coloured nostrils and mouth. Or maybe I’ll do those the other way round. Depends…