The Waving Flag: Painting Yellow

Monday 1 September 2014

Painting Yellow

There's been a recent thread on WD3.4 on the basics of painting with acrylics using a black undercoat. My contribution was my favourite recipe for yellow. This is a very common problem and I thought I'd post the details here too.

It's a two stage process (at least):
  • Base coat - Vallejo Light Brown (929) which is actually an orange brown.
  • Highlight - add Vallejo Light Yellow (949) to taste for as many layers you fancy.
Both are very highly pigmented paints which cover well and, when mixed, produce a very deep and vibrant yellow which is great for small areas on 15 mm figures. It really pops. In contrast, Vallejo Light Yellow (949) looks too stark being essentially a lemon yellow.

There are a couple of other advantages. The darker base coat creates a better, and much easier to paint, block shape for any area: I think this is a perception issue because the black/light brown boundary isn't as harsh as a black/yellow would be. Finally, the highlight can be applied within the blocked, base coated area without worrying about the edges because leaving some of the base coat showing will create an impression of depth.

I used this technique on the cross on the pennants below:

I also used it on the coat of the camel rider below and the shield highlights:


Drew Jarman said...

Nice tip, I will try it out myself on some things I need to paint up.

Vexillia said...

Let me know how it works for you. Also, I'm now following your blog by RSS.

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