Legio Wargames

Basic Colours

Natural Wood

After flesh, the next thing to paint is the backs of shields. Here I am using a natural wood although there is plenty of evidence that the backs of shields were often painted.


After years of experimenting I have now found the perfect way of doing this. I simply wash over the area with Coat d'Arms 176 Super Wash Mid Brown. It gives a lovely natural wood colour with a bit of a weathered patina.


To save time I have painted the spears at the same time.

Basic Colours

As these are back rankers I am using fairly subdued colours with lots of undyed cloth. I always thin the colour with a bit of water so that it settles into the folds and brings out the highlights. You can see the effect particularly well on the blue cloak. I usually paint tunics first, then trousers and finally cloaks. To get the right shades I mix my colours on a palette


By far my favourite paints for base colours are Wacofin Mattfarbe. They are available in almost every craft shop in Germany but hard to find elsewhere.

Fixing Up

I touch up with white the areas that have been covered up by darker paint. I only do this where I intend to paint over with a lighter colour. In this case the belt over the red tunic and hair that will be a light blond.


The leather effect of the caps and helmet is achieved with a wash of Coat d'Arms 133 Ink Wash Flesh. It gives an excellent leather but is useless as a flesh wash. The red leather cap is first painted with a basic red with a tiny bit of red-brown added and then also washed with the Ink Wash Flesh

Final Touches

Finally I paint the belts, shoes and hair. For leather I use Coat d'Arms  217 Leather Brown. For fair hair I like to start with Wacofin ochre mixed with white, adding a bit of sand or light brown to achieve a variety of shades. Don't worry at this stage if it looks a bit lifeless. The final raw umber wash with fix it.


Earlier on I painted over the metal areas with Coat d'Arms black wash in preparation for the metallic colours which come at the very end.

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