HellGate – Part 14 – Test Painted Head Hunters

I set myself a challenge for this weekend and, even though the weekend isn’t quite over, I know I’m going to fail the challenge. Haha

What was the challenge?

Paint the 17 space marines (Head Hunters) I’ve built over the last couple of weeks. If you remember, these are the ones with actual fabric (muslin) and chains attached.

The plan?

Was to keep things simple with dry brushing and then picking out key details.

Why have I failed?

As always, I bit off more than I can chew plus time restraints plus the fact that I take more care with painting these days.

I did, however, finish four models apart from the bases so I’m, reasonably, pleased and I can safely say I’ve decided on the colour scheme.


The fabric painted up better than expected and I think the key thing for this was using glue to harden the fabric. Worked a treat 👍🏼

With these next two I’m really happy with the heads. With the use of the W&N brushes I was able to achieve better highlights and the eyes aren’t too bad either.


Looking at them now I’m wondering if I should add something to the shoulder pads and/or other armoured sections? Maybe tribal paint markings or just stripes?

What do you guys think?



36 thoughts on “HellGate – Part 14 – Test Painted Head Hunters”

  1. Well I think you are better taking your time and producing results like this. You’ll be pleased that you did I reckon. I like detail so I would say add more but these look great as they are so it is really up to you. Oh and by the way, nice interview with Mark. 😊

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Agreed with TIM. Another option is the old batch-paint. Do a bunch of the broader work on all of them at once, then when it gets to the more detailed (and fun) parts then drop to doing them 2 at a time for the fun and finish parts. That’s essentially the biggest “secret” to my productivity – during my “downtime” for any given model (while drying, etc) I’ll often smash out some of the more basic, crappier, less fun stuff on other models (base coats, washes, etc). Which just brings them closer to the fun part once I finish whatever I’m actually, properly working on…

      Liked by 5 people

  2. They look great, IRO. Tribal markings are really up to you and how you envision them looking once finished. I’m sure they’d look good, but your vision for them needs to be up top of the considerations there.
    The material looks good, the hardened texture adds to it nicely. I used to make the odd WHFB banner from similar material in the past and it would always turn out nicely. I’ve even burned them after completing the painting (to the horror of the guy I was painting that particular Skaven army standard of) – but it turned out fine. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I think they’ve come out just right, so it’s been worth taking that bit longer to do them! 🙂 If I was painting them, I think I’d only add tribal markings and the like if I thought I could subdue them or weather them in keeping with the rest of the figures! I like them as they are though!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Very nice mate, very nice indeed! I think they could use a little something detail wise & something tribal would certainly fit the bill… or bones of course 😊

    That said, there is a stark utilitarianism about them as they are, and that is very satisfying.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. I think they look great, some of the best painting I think you’ve done, the colour is perfect and loving the details like the green lights on the bolter! (very Start Wars), Funnily I was thinking the same as you while looking at the pics, that I’d add a little shoulder detail. something Maori? looking perhaps with a stylised skull involved (they are headhunters after all). not sure, whatever you pick I’m sure will work.

    Cheers Roger.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Been looking at those fabric sections again, how do you think they would paint up in a silver or chainmail style, almost like bullet proof reinforced Kevlar type material? Just a thought.

        Oh and did you get my Email? always a bit nervous I sent it to the right address first time 🤔

        Cheers Roger.

        Liked by 2 people

  6. As always, in awe of your skills. Faces are fabulous. I think some kind of stencil marking on the shoulder pads would work nicely. Maybe an advert – “Visit Suburban Militarism blog”?

    Liked by 2 people

  7. They look so good and I really do love how the armor came out, as well as the scraps of fabric. I’d say even though you didn’t make your goal of 17 that it was still a success because these guys look great! It’s a good old case of Quality over Quantity and there’s nothing wrong with that. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  8. 17 space marines in a weekend is a hell of a challenge, I’d be happy with 17 in a month! Well done for making the attempt though, I’m liking the look of that colour scheme (tribal markings would be very cool though – contrast paints are your friend if you decide to go down that route). Oh and the fabric has turned out really well 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh yeah good idea on the contrast paints. I might do a few experiments. I was even thinking of doing some sort of stamp. Paint a skull onto cloth or even my finger then, very carefully, press the stamp onto the shoulder pad. I’m thinking this might give it a weathered and patchy type look straight away. Does that make sense?

      Liked by 2 people

      1. That does make sense. How about carving something out of a potato and making a stamp that way? You must have done that when you were a kid, or with your kids? Would be the same principle but much, much smaller – I reckon it would work though you’d just need to carve something really small.

        I’m pretty sure I remember KrautScientist at Eternal Hunt making some kind of stamp to put bloody handprints on his Chaos Knight as well, might be worth digging back through the archives to see how he did it.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Get your mates to help – they could all chip in! Or put the kids to work, they’re a chip off the old block anyway. Or combine different techniques into some kind of mash-up (but don’t go off half-baked – although that depends what you’re gunning for I suppose).

        Liked by 1 person

  9. I think you’ve achieved a lot with these. The little details and highlights here are simply the best you’ve shown and the aging and weathering makes these look like they should. Not too much, not too little. I would not add anything to these as logos need to look as old as the rest of the model and I fear you’d lose some of what you achieved here. But I would do that with the remaining ones. And the faces here are really good my friend!

    Liked by 1 person

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