Paint Space Wolves Fast & Easy

Paint your Space Wolves in no time with this easy technique that requires no airbrush and takes less than 30 minutes per model!

Space Wolves are one of the most popular faction in Warhammer 40k and for good reasons.  Who doesn’t love awesome space vikings riding wolves to battle?!

Paint Space Wolves Fast & Easy

A lot of times, people think you need an airbrush for speed painting.  Sure, it helps, but it is not mandatory.  That’s why this technique is done without one, without compromising on speed.


Because this is a quick paint job, our first goal is to base coat every surface with the proper color before moving on to any highlight or shading.

The armor is done with the Color Primer Wolf Grey from The Army Painter.  There’s no reason not to use this. You need a coat of primer on your model anyway, might as well use the proper grey and save a lot of time.

The more miniatures you have, the more time you save in this step.

Next, you can touch up any area your primer might’ve missed. For this, use regular Wolf Grey paint and a large brush.  This is not fine arts, grab a large brush to keep this process fast and effective.

Base Coats

Our other base coats are, in no real order:

Dark Reaper for the joints, Doombull Brown for the pouches and hair,  and Gun metal for everything metallic.

Keeping all the metallic in silver rather than mixing in gold is another quick way to save a lot of time in the long run, without really compromising on quality.

The Yellow, Red and Skin will be painted on later, so don’t bother with that just yet.

If you are following along the video, you’ll notice the cables and joints are painted towards the end rather than at the start, this is a mistake.  So stick to what you read, not what you see on this.


Before moving on to more base coats, we want to use Nuln Oil to shade our entire model at this stage.

We are doing this now, that way we don’t risk the black shade spilling unto our light colors like the skin and the yellow.

I prefer one thin and even coat over the armor, and a heavier coat on the joints, metallics and hair.  This is because the armor is mostly flat plates while the rest is more heavily textured.


While you can use an opaque yellow like Averland Sunset to get a vibrant color, I prefer something a little bit more grimdark.  It’s just as easy, maybe more.

Start with a clean base coat of Skrag Brown and highlight with Zamesi Desert.  You can do this highlight with as many thin coats as your time/willpower desires.  More thin coats, the smoother the result, less coats, less time.

I try to cover everything with at least one coat of Zamesi Desert.  That way, even the deepest recesses are not completely skrag brown, even if it’s showing through.

We are going to shade the yellow at a later step.


The skin is base coated with Bugman Glow, which we highlight with Kislev Flesh.  This will be a pretty hard transition,  The shading will smooth everything out later.  If this is too much for you, or are an heavy handed painter, you can use Cadian Fleshtone instead of Kislev Flesh.


Now’s the time to add squad and regiment markings with Mephiston Red.   For the purists out there, Red is the typical Blood Claws color.  Black is the ‘fully grown’ Space Wolves paint scheme.

If your model is wearing a helmet or has guns/backpacks with scopes and cameras, you can paint those with Mephiston Red as well.

Final Shading

Once this is done, we hit the yellow, red and skin with a thin coat of Agrax Earthshade.

This will smooth out the transition between the highlights and the base coats, and darken the colors to make them more in line with the rest of the model.


Everyone and their mom puts Space Wolves on snow bases, so I went a different route for mine, with a reddish brown that uses both Doombull Brown and Skrag Brown, that are on our model already.

Nothing wrong with snow, but it is not the only option available to paint Space Wolves armies.

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