Dwarfology -part I-

So, yesterday we launched our Kickstarter campaign, and things seem to grow up really nicely: we have already claimed our funding goal and unlocked the 10.000€ Stretch Goals, in about 13 hours of campaign. Such a mighty beginning!

However, this night, while I was trying to sleep without any success (it's hard to falling asleep if you check that damn Kickstarter app every 10 minutes...), I went spiritual, thinking about that little magic that we usually take for granted: I'm trying to create something, and people all around the world decide to support me, allowing me to reach my goals. It's something, at least for me, really powerful.

For this reason I thought about how to repay your support, at least in part, and I realized that in the last months I've started to edit the first painting tutorials about my Dwarves but I had to put them aside for a while, to manage this Kickstarter campaign.

However, now that the campaign is live and everything seems work, there are no excuses for procrastinating again the painting guides of my Dwarves.

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Dwarfology, a series of tutorials made to show you how I paint my Dwarves.


There are tons of tutorials out there, made by painters who are way better than me. With my tutorials, I don't want to "teach" you something, because I honestly don't feel like I'm technically competent to be a teacher: as we say here in Italy, "I still have to eat a lot of baby food, before doing it!". Instead, I prefer that you approach these guides as a way to know how I paint and, possibly, get some kind of inspiration from them.

Said this, you will quickly learn that my painting style is directly linked to how I learned to paint: I'm self-taught, I've no artistic studies in my resume and I don't think I'm blessed with an above average artistic talent.

For this reason, I had to optimize my skills and find a way to make the painting more easy to control: in brief, my style is all about breaking up the whole painting process into easy steps.

I think it's not a powerful method, nor the most artistic one: in fact, I'm quite jealous of those painters that seem to breath the colors and tame them like a proud tyrant of spectrum.

I'm not able to do it, so I need for a more digestible approach to the subject. It's like when you were a baby, and you didn't know how to eat your soup without burning your tongue, and then your mother gave to you a second dish so you could put a small amount of soup inside it, in order to make it cool quickly. My painting process is like having tons of different dishes to be able to enjoy the art a little at a time, without getting burned.


Generally, I always start with a smooth base-coat of a medium color (1). In this case, it's my precious Tallarn Flesh, one of the citadel colors of the Foundation line (I think probably the best line of colors ever made, such a shame that GW stopped to produce it). However, having the exact tone is not important, when you paint something, so just choice your favorite medium skin tone, or just prepare it using the primary colors and white: it's up to you.

In my opinion, it's important to have the best base-coat possible, that would mean a homogeneous coat, because my painting style is all about "discipline" and if I start with a bad base, I would bring that defect 'till the end of the process, ruin everything.

After having painted a proper base, I generally give a wash to the whole surface (2). Here I made a mix between Agrax Earthshade, a small amount of Fuegan Orange and Lahmian Medium. That would be almost a normal Reikland Fleshshade (gosh how I hate these new names...), but I don't have that color and I don't want to spend money to buy it. I'm a Ligurian, after all.

It's easy to paint a wash, but I recommend you to avoid to make "pots" of wash in the deepest recesses.

After the wash is dry (be sure it is!), I always restore the base color on the surface except the deepest recesses (3). In this step, I do