How to paint dinos
by Richard Danison
Prehistoric Scenes Gallery
Angelique Johnsey
Chris Thomas
Clay Badger
Damien Turner
Daniel Salcines
Gary C Senavites
J.B. Weeks
Jeff Brown
Jeff Johnson
Jeff Radek
Joe Seaman
Jonathan Reich
Kurt Christensen
Louis A Turczynski
Lynn Barlow
Mark A R Kreiss
Michael Atkins
Peter Dibenedetto
Phil Cheesman
Ray Ayles
Richard Danison
How-to by
Richard Danison
Rob - MMR
Robert Acevedo Martell
Rocco DiBenedetto
Roger Adamczak
Sam Marsh
Steve Cooke
Steven DeMarco
Steve Ross
Tory Mucaro
Other sites
Contact Me
Heres a re-issue Sailback that I've been working on. The Airbrushed body was a complete failure, but hey, it was only a test. We will concentrate on the face for our examples. The body was first primed with Krylon Ultra Flat black. The joke is, it's not really a primer, but just flat very black paint. I've found that the old Citadel brand paints work best for me for drybrushing. The thicker the paint is, the better it seems to work.

This Sailback will end up being orange. I start out by painting a base coat of the Darkest color, in this case, the darker red.

The first coat can be the sloppiest. I don't feel that every nook and cranny should be black, so a little red in those spaces is ok. If you load your brush up and then try to get as much off of it as you can on the edge of your paint bottle. The remainder, use a paper towel and brush your brush on it until there's just a little paint left. Thats drybrushing! The flatter angle you use on your model (painting parallel to the surface) the easier it is to get good results.

This is what our first coat should look like. Did I mention that I like water based paints because there are way less fumes....Hic....

I have done 2 reds and am starting an orange layer in this picture. I don't allow any drying time between layers and I use the same brush without cleaning it. This actually helps the colors blend more nicely.

I hand painted the rest of the body black. This picture shows the effect of the technique on the raised parts of the Sail. On surface detail that is supposed to be really dark, I try and mix brown in with my back. I think in modelling terms, that there are no true black colors and no true whites. Less chance of a jarring contrast.

Getting closer with the skin color now. The last step I will do is highlight some areas with yellow, to give it that finished look.

I hit the teeth with pallid flesh. The little breathing hole?(behind the eye) is pink. The detail in there is tough to get to so I will use a red wash to bring those details out later. A wah is a color of paint that is thinned down so it flows into surface recesses and doesn't cover the upper surface too much. You know, like panel lines on a Tank or something

The body is in the first step. The eyes will need a couple more coats of yellow. The Smilodon in the back ground was airbrused a couple of colors and then drybrushed a lighter color. Thats a variation of the black as basecoat technique. It gives a softer look.

Basically, More of the same applied techniques. The sail was airbrushed 2 tones of brown with a black stripe in the middle of the brown.The teeth, nails and the spines of the sail need to be finished too.

Bases represent a different challenge. I try for a big contrast between the base color and the next tone. Once 3 different shades of a color, say gray, are laid down, a light drybrushing of a tan or brown gives it a dusty-dirty look. Even light green to give river rocks a mossy look. Maybe one more picture left-when I finish the little guy.

The finished kit!

I would like to take a moment to publicly thank Rich for putting this together, and for letting me copy it from his site onto mine.
      Prehistoric Scenes Gallery
2000-2014 trevor ylisaari