After posting up my blog about my Fortified Manor, I received some very flattering comments about how I’d painted the set. Amongst them were a couple of requests for a quick tutorial on how I painted the ‘Yorkshire Stone’ effect. So here we go! 🙂
A quick note first. You may be wondering “Why Yorkshire stone..?”. Two reasons. Reason One: Everybody seems to paint their stone walls, rock faces, hill sides in some variation of black basecoat drybrushed grey. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with this at all, I simply decided that I wanted my scenery to look different. So different how?
That brings me to Reason Two: I live in Yorkshire and ever since I moved here in 1990, I’ve been enchanted by the colour of Yorkshire stone, especially when sunlight is shining on the local buildings and they almost light up with a honeyed glow. So, I decided to try and replicate the golden colour of Yorkshire Stone in my scenery.
You can see examples of this (with varying degrees of success) in how I’ve painted my Tabletop World Stone Bridge, Windmill and the GW Deathknell Watch, Walls and Fences and Fortified Manor. It’s after painting the Fortified Manor that I feel I’m finally happy with how the stone effect looks.
So, here’s how I do it, using a section of stone wall from the GW Garden of Morr kit as an example.
After washing the kit in warm, sightly soapy and allowing it to thoroughly dry, I undercoated it in Vallejo Model Colour Black paint using my airbrush. No reason you can’t use your go-to black undercoat for this, or even brush the undercoat on, as long as it’s a thin coat of paint with even coverage.
Next step, add your base coat. I use Miniature Paints #62 Sand for my Yorkshire stone colour. I have a large tub of this I bought around 2000 which is still great to use, but a quick Google search shows you can get it from Ral Partha Europe in case your local model/craft store doesn’t stock this range.
I airbrushed this on for speed and convenience, leaving a little bit of variation here and there by spraying the paint less thickly in places. Once dried, the wall looks like this.
I then used a paintbrush to apply the base #62 Sand colour to random pieces of stone, the pillars and capstones. (note the airbrushed base coat looks a little darker in this picture than the one above simply because it was getting dark outside as I took this photo). With the base colour added here and there, the wall looks like this:
I next mixed a little brown paint into the base colour and painted a couple of random stones using this colour and then did the same by mixing some grey into the base colour and picking out another few stones. This gives four different shades of stone (airbrushed base colour, brushed on base colour and sand/brown and sand/grey), which I’ve found seems to give a final overall effect that’s pleasing to the eye. If you want to go to town you could mix in a little olive green with the base colour too and pick out a few more stones in this.
I painted the earth at the base of the wall Vallejo Model Colour 70.872 Chocolate Brown, the gate and spikes on top of the wall Vallejo Model Colour 70.863 Gunmetal Grey and picked out the Skulls in Army Painter Skeleton Bone. The wall now looked like this:
The next step is the one that really brings things to life. I brushed on a wash of Army Painter Strong Tone ink. This is marvellous stuff and I always have it and the Soft and Dark Tone inks in my paint box. Apply it liberally. I find that using a flat brush results in less air bubbles in the ink as you apply it, compared to using a ’round’ bristled brush.
Once you’ve coated the entire wall section, give it a minute or two to settle and then look at the wall to see if the ink is pooling too heavily in any one place. if it is, you can remove some using a paintbrush or small twists of tissue paper. NB -I always lay my walls down flat if the model allows it when the ink is drying, so there’s less chance of the ink running down to the bottom half of the piece of scenery.
Give it a couple of hours to completely dry and the wall looks like this:
Now at this stage, your wall looks pretty fine, so you could leave it here if you like. But a final drybrush and some detail work will really make it pop.
Now before you drybrush the wall, be absolutely certain that the ink has completely dried. Very little ruins all your hard paintwork like taking a drybrush to a model where the wash isn’t dry and then smearing said wash all over the upper surface of the model. Trust me on this.
I used a 50:50 mix of the Minature Paint #62 sand Vallejo Model Colour 70.847 Dark Sand (which despitethe name is much lighter in colour than Miniature Paint #62 Sand) to drybrush all the stone work, skulls included; whilst trying to avoid the gate and spikes.
When drybrushing, try to work the bristles of the brush down the model predominantly, as light generally hits something from above, not below.
I followed this with a drybrush of just the Vallejo Dark Sand and finally a 50:50 mix of Vallejo Dark Sand and pure white. After a quick touch up of the gunmetal paint on the hoops either side of the gate, I added some Modelmates rust effect paint to the metal sections and highlighted the skulls here and there with the same Dark Sand:White mix.
There you have it – job done:
The Army Painter Strong Tone ink ties together the different shades of stone brilliantly and even adds a degree of shading to each individual block of stone that comprises the wall. It’s really great stuff and I highly recommend it.
I’ll add some static grass to the base of the wall so it ties in with my gaming boards, but that is how I paint Yorkshire Stone on my models. I hope you find this tutorial useful.
Thanks for reading 🙂