How to Paint a Glowing Power Sword
By¬†Matt ‘Ragnar’ Susalka

Matt is an award winning painter know all over the net for his great communication skills and very high quality of painting.  Below he presents a quick and easy tutorial on how to paint award winning glowing swords.

Hey guys,
here, at long last, is your promised guide to painting that glowing sword for the Imperial Fist captain.

First, you’ll need the following paints (or their equivalents):
Chaos Black (Black)
Skull White (Skull)
Blood Red (Blood)
Devlan Mud (Devlan)
Scorched Brown (Scorched)
Blazing Orange (Blazing)

You can use different paints for this (i.e. Dark Angels Green instead of Blood Red and get a similar effect with another colour), so feel free to experiment.

Step 1: Over a white undercoat, built up a solid basecoat of Blood Red on your blade (I built it up on the outside of the blade, because I’ve painted the inner part of the blade a different colour)

Step 2: Look at your two halves of your blade: decide where you want the lighter light points to be and where the dark points will be. Also, pick an angle/direction upon which the reflections will lie (see the final pic for a visual of what I mean). You’ll need to be consistent here, otherwise the effect will look ‘wrong’. So, with your Devlan, from the start point of where a dark area will be, place the brush on the surface and pull the paint into the place which will be darkest (for me, that’s the bottom of the blade and the top). Repeat this process multiple times, starting ever closer to the darkest portion of the shadow, to create a graded shadow.

Step 3: Take your base colour (Blood), and thin it out. Do the opposite of the last step, by dragging the paint to the lightest part of the blade, overlapping the first quarter or so of the shadow in order to smooth the blend.

Step 4: Now, mix a small bit of Blazing and Skull into the Blood (roughly a portion of 1-1-3) and water this down. Within the part of the blade to be the light part, paint this mixture in the middle of the Blood base colour.

Step 5: Now, mix up 4 parts Skull, 1 part Blood, and 1 part Blazing. Now, you paint this in a thin line in the very middle of the light section of the blade like this:

Step 6: The middle part of the blade, having been based with Bleached, is now given numerous glazes of watered down Scorched, moving ever closer to the bottom, in order to build up a dark colour. The very top of the inner-most part, I applied some Skull to add to the contrast.

Good luck, and, as usual, don’t hesitate to comment or ask any questions.
Let me know how it turns out for you guys!