Dragons aren’t so big and scary. Certainly not after I completed my 3 Dragon Challenge. And having a bunch of them bagged up, unpainted, unassembled… unloved? Just felt wrong. Especially since I’ve been giving giants such attention lately. So, digging through my box of Bones dragons, I decided to tackle Blightfang. Seemed only fair as he was a main antagonist in my first 5e campaign.
After the usual hot soapy bath and scrub with a toothbrush, I realized the first thing I needed to do was figure out a base for him. What size? Thankfully, I have lots of options. Mostly for giggles I tried him on a 3” base. He fit… but only just, and looked ridiculous. Both 4” and 5” looked much better, but given my limited shelf space, I decided to be a little conservative and go with the 4” base.
Next I had to decide what to assemble, and what to leave off to make painting a little easier. The rear leg and tail didn’t get in the way. Neither did the head or neck. The front leg and wings though, they’d be a problem, so they didn’t get glued on. The base for the rear feet… didn’t really fit. The legs didn’t want to squish together. I tried. Rather than try to force it, I decided to build up the base with cork. I added in a bunch of gravel and coffee grounds to the base to blend it all together.
Blightfang himself was base coated with Green liner, while the base got the airbrush primer I got at Reapercon. I then mixed a bland of Green Liner with (what else?) Dragon Green, and then just a pure Dragon Green layer. The chest plates were painted with Vallejo’s Red Leather, and the back fin/spines and wing membranes were painted with Walnut Brown, and then a blend of Burgundy Wine and Walnut Brown.
I then dug out my old pot of GW’s Leviathan Purple Wash, which turned out to be both mostly empty and fairly sludgy, and added in a whole lot of Reaper’s flow improver. Once I got it back to a useable state, I basically bathed Blightfang in it, except for the wing and back fin.
After touching up some of the spots where the liner rubbed off, I went back over him with Dragon Green, and then successively lighter layers of blended Dragon Green with more and more Sun Yellow.
Returning my attention to the base, I decided to wash the ground cover with a 1:1 Walnut Brown:Flow Improver mix, and to paint the rocks with the Redstone Triad.
I then realized I'd mostly ignored the head... so...
Bringing up the color of the fin and wings, I used Red Leather mixed with Burgundy Wine… and was really unhappy with it. For one thing, it was too dark, though with successive layers I knew I could bring it up, but the real issue was that there wasn’t any POP! It wasn’t eye catching. It needed something more, so I thought about what might work, and settled on red. Specifically I was thinking of the vibrant red of a maple leaf in autumn. So, out came Heraldic Red.