Tutorial HOT and SMOKEY exhaust plumes

HOT and SMOKEY exhaust plumes

Tutorial from my good friend Roeland. He shows how to paint HOT and SMOKEY exhaust plumes. I edited some of the colors as an example but this tutorial can be done with many colors.

Tip from Roeland: keep doing all the steps and practice for a better result.


Photo, Space Marine, Orange, Yellow, Citadel paints, Red
Lenny Craft-It
9 colors
10 steps

Step 1

Chaos Black Spray
White Scar

First put some primer on. I primed in black and then drybrushed a zenithal highlight with white. This first part is not essential. You can also prime everything in white or gray.

Step 2

Yriel Yellow

We are going to make a gradient form yellow to red. Don't worry about blending too much because in a later stage we will be painting over half of this. I recommend to work fast while the paint is wet. But always keep in mind that the inner part of fire, where it is the most hot, is also the most bright. So when you paint a colour you paint partly over the previous colour but keep the recesses as they are. That way the brighter colour keeps in the recessed spots. Start the gradient with a bright yellow.

Step 3

Troll Slayer Orange

Make a gradient with an orange but keep the top yellow and work your way done adding more color.

Step 4

Evil Sunz Scarlet

Continue the gradient with red. Starting half way and work your way down.

Step 5

Mephiston Red

Continue the gradient with dark red. But now paint the bottom 20%.

Step 6

Khorne Red

On the bottom 10% I used a even darker red to finish the gradient.

Step 7

Rhinox Hide
Yriel Yellow

In the photo's you can see I went from very bright yellow to an almost black red. When the yellow, orange and red gradient is drying you can take a moment to be proud. 😁✌️

When the paint is dry you can paint the base in the colours of your army. I painted a dark brown with a yellow white highlight on.

Step 8

Abaddon Black

Then you can start with stippling black paint on the bottom of the plume. The higher you get, the smaller the black surfaces. You can use an old brush of a sponge for this. So you can work fast while keeping a random patern. Also, dont paint the recesses. Keep the black paint on top of the shapes. Imagine the black paint to be the smoke coming out of the flame.

Step 9

Abaddon Black
White Scar

You can then add more and more white to your black paint to first make a dark grey and end up with a light grey, almost white. Each time you apply a lighter shade of grey you move a bit higher up the plume. And at the same time the lighter shade of grey should also cover a smaller surface / make smaller dots. This way you make a second gradient of black to light grey.

Step 10

Rhinox Hide

Ok take a breather because step 8 and 9 where... 😮‍💨 To make the base more in line with the smoke I imagine sand and dust being swept up. So apply the colour of your base in the bottom of the smoke.

End of tutorial