Tools & Utilities

Transleted by Slepnir
Following you`ll find a summary of my current Tools & materials I am using while working / painting with miniatures.

What do you need?
1. A Workstation


Maybe the most important part of our hobby. Without a good brush you need a lot of patience. Most cheap brushes lossing their form really fast - so I suggest to buy at least 2-3 good brushes. I prefer the Windor  Newton Series No 7 brushes. The tip of those is pretty "sharp" and keeps the shape for a looooong time. All you have to keep them alive is to take care of them (use some brush-soap from time to time to clean them; use hairspray after a paintingsession to strenght the tip and never ever use such an expensive brush for drybrushing!).

Soon you ll get a separate article about brushes, their quality and the way you should take care of those to have fun for a long time.

But let me give you just a hand full of quick tips how to work best wiht brushes. First of all you should pick the right brush for the area you are going to paint. So the seize matters. Most of the time I am working with brushes seize 3, those got a nice reservoir to paint many many strokes before picking up new colour - and they are not too big, so you are able to paint most areas (even the smaller ones) with this one. If the reservoire is too small you must pick up new colour every few strokes - a bigegr one would do that job in most cases too ;)

Use cheap, I mean really cheap!, brushes when you are painting bases. Mostly you have big areas and surfaces to paint. Why not using a big cheap brush without regarding his health? Just paint the way you like.

Old brushes
Those are useful while you are painting with varnishes, like the Tamiya colors. You could also use them for painting bases. Sometimes I am using those for simple sculpting-works too. Never put an old brush in the garbage! It will have a new task soon ... ;)

Most painters are using a so called wet pallet. The big advantage of this is that it keeps your colors for a long time liquid. so you could even take a break for 2-3 days and just start painting with the colors you ve used the last time.

Use a box similar like the one on the picture below. Fill this with foam, kitchen roll or any other watersucking material. Now cut some baking paper and put it on top of your water sucking material. It`s important to cut this smaller then the palette itself. Niow fill the box with water until it reachs your baking paper. It should be possible to easily move this by sliding over it with a finger. It must be wet, not just damp! Try to reduce the airbubbles below the paper! The water frm below is keeping your color liquid.

To get a higher contrast for your colors you could use either a black foam / kitchen roll or brown baking paper instead of the classic white one. This depends on your own preferences.

What would we do without our beloved tootpicks?! A tool I am using for mostly everything. Some people are using only those to sculpt their miniatures - crazy, eh?

You could chew the tip of it to "erase" a layer of dried color for example. Even it is dried a long time ago. Give it a try and be suprised ;)

Hair dryer
Something to reduce the time of waiting until the current layer is dried.
I am regular using 2 diffeent colors: GW and Vallejo Model Color (as the Air colors for the airbrush).
Droppots and agitator balls
I prefer classic droppots by Vallejo. You are able to mix the color drop by drop in the exactly same mixture every time.

Use agitatorballs inside of your pots to mix them better while shaking. Please remember: Always shake them good.

Non-color colors
(every white, back and grey)
!! CAUTION !! White is tending to ruin itself with the time
Some people have problems when it comes to painting with white; it`s getting chalky. I can`t tell you the reason for, but to avoid this horrible experience I am going to buy every half year a new pot of white. I?m even going to a GW-Store for this to grab the one staying on the last place in the color-shelf to get the frshest one ;)

I could suggest all of the GW-Metallics - those are pretty cool and easy to use. I am just missing some "brightest" colors in their range. so I am using Vallejo Model & Air Color for this too.

It`s hard to say something good about Vallejo GAME color for me - I am not really able to paint with them. BUT the gold colors here are pretty good!


Browns in different variations
You can`t ever have enough of those...!
My always used basecolor for red is a mix of darf flesh and red gore (both GW).
It`s hard to paint a good looking red. Don`t try to use grey or white to push the red in a brighter direction, it`s tending to get rosè... use graveyard earth or skintones for this ;)



If you think the currently used green is too strong you could use red or brown to saturate it ;)


Here I suggest to give the Tamiya ccolors a try. Those are great for coloring water or creating slime and blood effcts!



Good for the creation of rust or mud - or just to mix your own colors!

coming soon ...

Airbrush & Spray

I prefer Games workshop Primer. simply the ebst =)



  1. Hi there.

    I have read this great post and start thinking about the good idea of using those vallejo type bottles to put GW colors inside. Can I ask you where did you buy them? I would be very grateful if you could point me out any any on-line shop that sells them as well as the agitators balls you comment.

    Thank you very much in advance.


  2. Good morning, you could buy them in this shop:

    That`s just one out of a numerous shops who is offering those bottles and agitator balls.

  3. Great article that distills many facts in one roundup. Maybe I should also transfer my GW colors to those Vallejo-style drip bottles.

    Thanks for that!


  4. Thanks very much for the links.

    Bye, bye citadel bottles....