Help with Horns?
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Thread: Help with Horns?

  1. #1

    Default Help with Horns?

    Hello all!

    A friend recommended this site to me and I have been overwhelmed with the standard of the majority of the mini\'s featured here, so well done to you all.

    The reason I am posting is to ask for help, having taken a 9 year break from WFB I have now got the bug again and have started to collect and paint a small Chaos army of Slaanesh. However I have found a stumbling block on the first miniature I have started to paint. It\'s an old Minotaur, which is quite small compared to the beasts GW produce these days. So having made a paint job I am happy with on most of the mini as an albino Minotaur I am faced with the last thing to do, his horns...

    Having read everything I can about painting horns and trying a variety of methods it is safe to say I am hopelessly stuck.

    Any tips would be appreciated.

    Thanks in advance,


  2. #2

    Default honk if you\'re....


    I have tried many approaches, but the one I like best is...

    Base coat with your darkest color.

    Slowly layer a lighter shade (make sure each layer is dry first) working your way towards the ends of the horns.

    I did that on this fella:

    That particular minotaur had some sculpted detail on the horns, so I just used the lighter color and touched on the texture.

    If there is no texture, I\'d suggest using very diluted paint and make different lengths of thin stripes pointing towards the end of the horns. Do this with several of the colors you used, to represent the multi colors found in real horns....I hope this makes sense....Good luck!

  3. #3


    Thanks for the advice, I\'ll try that tonight. Funnily enough its the same mini as the one you gave the link for that I am painting.

    Cheers again.

  4. #4


    supervike\'s instructions are clear and he\'s got a nice looking minotaur.
    Problem is a bull\'s horns don\'t look like that. They get darker at the tips, not lighter.

  5. #5

    Default BULL!

    That does tend to make sense. The \"newer\' growth of the horns should be a lighter color


    There are all kinds of pics here with lighter tips (as well as darker tips)

    The Texas Longhorn for instance.

    (No bull about it, one way or the udder, we are going to milk this whole thread for all its worth. Cheesy, you say! No, i am just trying to butter you up. I\'ll steak my reputation on it.) ok ok I ran out of cattle puns....

  6. #6


    Orginal gepostet von supervike
    (No bull about it, one way or the udder, we are going to milk this whole thread for all its worth. Cheesy, you say! No, i am just trying to butter you up. I\'ll steak my reputation on it.) ok ok I ran out of cattle puns....
    You trying to make me cry?

    ...with rage? :D

  7. #7


    *Holds head in hands*

    No more puns please!

    Thanks for the replies so far, I am just about to give the horns another go so wish me luck.;)

  8. #8

    Default ok ok

    [quote]Originally posted by Mosch
    Orginal gepostet von supervike
    You trying to make me cry?

    ...with rage? :D
    I have no beef with you....lollol

    that\'s the last one, I promise...

    Good luck with the horns. I hope you post them (along with the whole mini)soon!

  9. #9


    I\'d definately lilsten to Supervike\'s advice . There\'s no way he\'d steer you wronglollollollol

  10. #10


    At least neither of them is being bull-headed about this. It would be terrible to see them lock horns over such a trivial matter.


  11. #11

    Default Ok people......

    ....mooe it along - nothing to see here... :rolleyes:

    I also have thoughts about horns, in particular how to paint them. I\'ve seen quite a few done really well - they look kinda spikey. Am I explaining this well??? Oh good\'s a picture, judge for yerself ;)

  12. #12

    Default NIce horns, horrible pun

    I like your example of horns, Too_shy, but another pun of that quality and I\'ll be foce to came over there and kick your dairy-air.

    I would comment on the idea of you knowing the proper way to make a man horny, but I won\'t. ONe of your e-sons may be listening and we wouldn\'t want to shock them.

  13. #13


    Here\'s a minotaur I did about a year and a half ago ... sorry the pic doesn\'t show the horns really well, but I think the top pic shows enough:

    My basic horn technique is:
    1). Prime White
    2). Base the horn w/ a slightly thinned vallejo Ivory
    3). Do a very thin wash of vallejo game color cobra leather over the entire horn.
    4). Now for some fun ... wet-blending these steps should all be done while the paint is still wet and you should clean your brush between steps.
    4a). mix slightly thinned ivory
    4b). mix reasonably thinned cobra leather
    4c.). apply light mix from light end to middle
    4d). apply dark mix from dark end to middle
    4e). feather the paints in the center to get a nice, soft blend from light to dark.
    5). Use ivory to highlight the tip.
    6). Use your favorite dark brown to darken where the horn comes out of its \"socket.\"

    I hope this helps.

  14. #14

    Default I am sorry...

    That is great advice and all Sivousplay, but without resorting to some sort of Cow Pun, how can we possibly take you seriously???


    I\'ll be starting that Heresy Minotaur very soon, so thanks for linking that here, gives me some great stuff to strive for!

  15. #15


    I\'m wondering what else this thread will re \"veal\" :)

    Sorry... I should know better, I\'ll think I\'ll go and stand in the corner..

  16. #16
    Brushlicker Valander's Avatar
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    Well, I might as well join the herd and add some suggestions on painting horns.

    The one thing that I\'ve noticed about the majority of posts here, though, is that they\'re all backwards. Supervike makes the comment (correctly) that the newer growth should be lighter than the older growth. However, horns grow from the skull outwards! Doing some Googling for various horns results in some of the following images (hope they work):

    Disclaimer: No, that pic is not of me. Some goofball for a costume shop catalog. ;)

    The thing to notice is that the colors go from lightest to darkest from the join at the skull to the tip.

    I\'ve done some stuff like this, but unfortunately don\'t have a pic at the moment. From what I recall, the colors were like so:

    1. Base coat Snakebite Leather (or similar).
    2. From about 2/3 up the horn, start working Ivory (Reaper or Vallejo, or White + touch of yellow) down towards the skull. Leave a small line right where the skull meets the horn of the basecoat.
    3. On the upper 1/3 of the horn, start working Woodland Brown (Reaper, or other dark brownish-black) towards the tip.

    You can do this in a couple of ways--you can layer, which takes a little more time but has good results, or you can drybrush, which is faster, but a little more \"chalky.\"

    If I were to do it now, I\'d (of course) use my \"tweening\" technique! (Come on, me post a painting tip without mentioning tweening? ;) )

  17. #17

    Default I am sorry too ...

    Sorry for not following proper thread etiquette ... although I\'m not one for puns, but every time I tried to think of something about cows or horns I\'m reminded of a South Park (Cow Days) ...

    Cartman after being thrown by a mechincal bull becomes Ming-Lei (or something like that) a character based on the prostitute from full metal jacket who uttered the very famous, \"Me so horny ... me love you long tme ...\"

    Cartman approaches one of the gentlemen in the crowd at Cow Days and says, \"s*cky s*cky ... five dolla\" to which the guy responds, \"get away from me kid, you\'re grossing me out!!\"

    One of my favorites ...

    This thread hijacking attempt was brought to you by the letters C, O, and W and by the number 5.


  18. #18


    It does look like the majority of real horns are the other way ... from a painting perspective, I think the \"false\" way make it stand out a bit more. With the tip being bright, it looks \"pointier\" and therefore a tad more \"dangerous.\" I\'ve never tried the other way, but I will and will post something after I do to compare how the two look.


  19. #19

    Default I just did some web surfing...

    ...looking for \'horn\' and I got a completely different set of results:wow:

    Gotta go and lie down now...:flip:

    *funnily enough, a similar thing happened when I tried searching for \'wood\' for a previous thread......Is it just me? Or should I be stocking up on pink and purple????

  20. #20


    Originally posted by supervike
    That does tend to make sense. The \"newer\' growth of the horns should be a lighter color


    There are all kinds of pics here with lighter tips (as well as darker tips)

    The Texas Longhorn for instance.
    Funny, the longhorns on the page you linked have horns darker at the tips.
    I\'m not saying there aren\'t some that are the other way around, I just haven\'t seen any (and I\'ve had my hand in a cow\'s stomach dangit - I\'m not without personal cow experience)

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