A Girl Obsessed with Dragons – A Miniature Painting Story – Part III

Time to see how I base coated that dragon!

Mary Crabtree


If you are reading this article, then you are probably returning to this series to continue learning about my journey painting the Legendary Dragon from Mythic Games. If this is your first time, you can read Parts I and II from the links below. In Part III, I will tell my story about how the dragon’s base colors evolved. Please keep reading.

Base Colors

As I mentioned in Part II, I primed the dragon with Army Painter Goblin Green. I thought this would be the primary color overall. Well, that evolved and I think only the webbing on its wings stayed just that color. However, most of the colors I used, had Goblin Green mixed in it so it all blended quite nicely.


I will start by talking about paints in general. When I first started, I went to Walmart and bought Apple Barrel acrylic paints. You can get them for 50 cents! This is what my friend taught me. And to start out, I recommend them. And, I still use them. My brother uses them. In my opinion, there is nothing wrong with them. I know there are debates on longevity and cracking, but I have seen miniatures my friend has painted years ago and they still look great. There is no visible cracking that I saw.  So, if you are just starting off painting, I would start inexpensively.

I have branched out and now I have the entire Army Painter line. I will not lie. They are good paints. With the Apple Barrel, you are pretty much always going to do two coats. With the Army Painter line, most of the time, you will not have to. It just depends on the color. Also, the Army Painter bottles average around $3 for an 18 ml bottle. The Apple Barrel paint bottles are 2 oz. which is about 59 ml. Like I said before, start off economical and plentiful! I normally use a combination of both. I have PLENTY of paint!

Base Coating the Spine of the Dragon

Now, back to the dragon. All of my base coats were Army Painter paints. I started with the spine. I used Troglodyte Blue at first. This morphed into another color after I blended some facial coats. So, the final color ended up being Troglodyte Blue mixed with Basilisk Brown.

Base Coating the Body of the Dragon

The body of the dragon is two parts. The darker green below the base of the spine is Goblin Green (50%) mixed with Basilisk Brown (50%). The lighter green is Goblin Green (30%) mixed with Troll Claws (70%). By using Goblin Green in both mixtures, I could blend and transition these colors nicely.

Base Coating the Wings of the Dragon

For the wings, I used the same mixtures from above except I used 100% Goblin Green on the wing webbing on the top. I used the Basilisk Brown mixture for the top wings and the webbing underneath. Then, I used the Troll Claws mixture on the bottom wings.


These colors transitioned nicely, and I am pleased with the outcome. Overall, the Goblin Green had a presence in each transition.

Be sure to come back and read Part IV of the series. My brother, Michael Crabtree, will write this article and how he took part in the project! Michael has a degree in character animation and is a natural artist/cartoonist.