July 24, 2014

Tutorial: Space Marine Plasma Coils

Another tutorial. This time, the subject is Space Marine Plasma Coil Glow. I have seen plenty of tutorials on this, but they all seem pretty involved to me, having many steps and gradient highlighting. If you're a lazy painter like me, you want something quick and easy that looks halfway decent. So read on because I think I have the technique for you.

Here's everything you need. Your model (here I have a Marine with Plasma Cannon), white paint, Citadel Guilliman Blue Glaze, a brush and water for cleaning said brush. Of course a paper towel as well, but I don't think I really need to take a picture of that, right? Now, I know I typically use Citadel paints, but I like the Formula P3 white as I find it is "denser". By that I mean I get better one pass coverage from the white over other colors or even black primer and I don't need to paint over it 5 times to get it looking good. Of course in this case, we're not too worried about that.

First step is to Lay down the white paint on the coils and let it dry.

After that has dried, Lay down some blue glaze. If you go too heavy, use the edge of a paper towel or tissue to blot up the excess. (this pic was pre-blot)

Once that dried, it still looked a little too white for me and didn't have enough depth in the channels, so I gave it another shot of glaze. However, this time, I just barely got the brush wet and ran it along the channels of the coil. With the previous layer of glaze, the surface is a little more "tacky" and the glaze come off the brush and stays where it needs to be better.

Once that second layer of glaze dried, I had lost too much of the white, so I gave it a very light dry brush of white to get the coil highlights. And that's it. My recommendation is that once you are completely finished with the model and you seal it, go back over the coils with a gloss varnish like 'Ardcoat to give it some shine. A glossy plasma coil looks better than a matte one. Especially when the rest of the model is matted, it makes it stand out.

I'll leave you with a couple other examples:


  1. Great simple tutorial, that is easy to follow with great results! Thanks! I was doing a method involving multiple coats of blue and white...this looks just as good (if not better), and way easier to do!

    1. Thanks! Like I said, I'm a lazy painter and I always thought this gave good results. If it's easier and less time consuming, I'm there. :)