How to paint Blood Angel Red

Hey there Ladies and Gents,

Here with my first tutorial, how to paint Blood Angel red. I know this has taken me quite a while to finish, but lack of sun or proper lighting was a small problem. Onto the tutorial!

Instead of simply calling this tutorial ‘how to paint red’, I wanted to specify what kind of red I was going for. This red will have a bit more orange to it than, say, World Eater red, but I wanted my paint job to stand out a little more. This tutorial will involve a fair number of steps, so I don’t really recommend following it for every single Space Marine you do. This was meant for Captains, and other high ranking Space Marines. I am unsure how well this would transfer over to a vehicle, but I am sure a Dreadnought would be alright. First off, here is a picture of all the paints I am using for the red. You will notice that these are the old Citadel paints. This is simply because I have not needed to buy any of the new reds, although I am sure that will happen soon. If you don’t have one of more of the paints here, just take a look at the Games Workshop conversion chart, and see what the new equivalent is.

You will also notice that I am using the Army Painter Strong Tone. With the new GW washes, or shades as they are now called, the replacement for Devlan Mud was a real letdown for me. I am unsure if anyone else had this problem, but Agrax Earthshade dried with a gloss finish. This, for me, will not do. I used Devlan mud a lot, and it was easily my favorite wash, along with Badab Black. After looking and doing some reading on the internet, I found the perfect replacement for Devlan Mud and Badab Black. This was the Strong and Dark Army Painter Quickshade. If you still miss the old washes, go pick these up. You will not be disappointed,  I can promise you that. With that, let’s get started!

Step I
Obviously the first step will be to prime your mini. I used a black primer because it is what I am used to, and I will be working up from a darker red. You could use a grey or white primer, and that would make the red come out brighter.

Step II
The next step is to get a nice basecoat of red. I used a mix of 2 parts Blood Red and 1 part Merchite Red. As with any basecoat, it is important to get a smooth finish. You don’t want any clumps of paint or brushstrokes on your miniatures. For this reason, use a bit of water, and don’t be afraid to come back to do another coat. Remember, this is a high ranking Space Marine, he deserves some time and patience.

 Step III
This is a fun one. Wash the entire mini with Baal Red. Give him a liberal wash, as this will help give some shadow, and define the armor segments. When that dries, wash the recesses with Army Painter Strong Tone. You can use Devlan mud or the equivalent here.

Step IV
Layer on thinned down Blood Red. You don’t want this to be to watery, as it will flow right into the recesses you just worked on. Not watery enough, and it will look chunky. It’s a bit of a balance, but with a little bit of time you can get it. I used about 2 parts Blood Red, and 1 part water, so my advice is to start from there.

Step V
This step will be subtle, but should not be overlooked. Highlight the entire Blood Angel with a mix of 1 part Blood Red, and 1 part Blazing Orange. This step may be hard to notice, but it will help the highlights blend with the layering you just did.

Step VI
Next, do another highlight of Blazing Orange. Make sure to only highlight the more prominent area of the model, such as corners of the armor. Be sure to water this down a bit, for two reasons. One, we want to be sure it goes on smoothly. Second, watering it down will make it slightly translucent. This means that it will blend with the last highlight, and will gradually get brighter as you go over the area more.

Step VII
This is the last step for the red. Give the armor a light wash of Baal Red. This will help tone done the orange, and tie together all the highlights. Make sure it is a thin wash, and be sure it does not pool.

And here we have the finished Blood Angel. I am very happy with how this chap turned out, and I am very pleased with the axe. Hopefully this tutorial is helpful to some. I will be putting up some more tutorials soon. I am thinking Imperial Fists, and Night Lords. If anyone has any requests I would be happy to hear them!



  1. Blood Angels' Devastators on January 19, 2013 at 3:25 am

    Different colors of power weapons is my request.


  2. james roy byrne on June 14, 2013 at 1:39 am

    fantastic tutorial, well done! very clear and concise and just what I was looking for. this is exactly how I what to paint my blood angels. looking forward to more, maybe once you do imperial fists and night lords you could give the alpha legion some love

    • Trysanna on June 14, 2013 at 6:00 pm

      I already have the Alpha Legion in mind. I want to do all of the Legions at some point.

  3. Jaze on September 10, 2013 at 10:24 pm

    Very nice red. I’m lovin’ the hell out of your tuts. How did you do the axe? – Jaze

    • Trysanna on September 12, 2013 at 7:28 pm

      The axe was basecoated with a very dark purple. Naggaroth Night plus a pinch of black will do. From there, I use Liche Purple to paint some energy lines, and build it up a few times, adding white to each layer. I also use the Liche Purple and white mix to the edges of the axe.

      I’ll be doing a full tutorial on it when I finish my Deathwing tutorial.

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