Speed Painting Sisters of Battle

The Our Martyred Lady order is the quintessential sisters of battle look.  Painting your OML army in no time and looking great is very simple!

When it comes to black armies, the Sisters of Battle come to mind.  Their classic scheme, the Our Martyred Lady order, is as simple as it is striking.

And it is very easy to do in a limited time.  The best part is you don’t even need an airbrush.

Speed Painting Sisters of Battle

The key with speed painting here is going to use a very limited palettes that reuses the main shade, Nuln Oil, to create a bold contrast between the different elements.


Because we are looking for a very simple palette, all of the colors (all four of them) need to be striking on their own.  Black is no exception and to make it interesting, we are using deep turquoise to bring it to life.

Start on a black undercoat, and highlight with Stegadon Scale Green.  We are using an airbrush in the video, but drybrushing would work just as well.

Make sure to leave some of the original black showing, but don’t stress over your sister of battle looking mostly turquoise for now.

Next, add an extra highlight with Ahriman Blue.  The name says blue, but it has big turquoise vides to it and matches really well with the Stegadon Scale Green.  This highlight is much more delicate than the first one.  We just want to bring out to very edges or raied points of the armor.

Again, don’t stress with the armor looking more blue than black at this point.

Color Blocking

To save time, this model makes use of color blocking.  Painting base coats of everything before shading or highlighting.

Because it is impractical to explain each color individually at this point, once the black is done, you want to color block your models.  The face would be the exception here, and we’ll cover this at the end of the article, as our Sister of Battle was an examplar of safety first and wore her helmet to battle.

The red cloaks are done with Mephiston Red, all the cables, guns and joints are painted Leadbelcher, and the white hair and details are painted Ulthuan Grey.


Once color blocking is done, shade the entire model with Nuln Oil.  Everything.  You can go lightly on the reds and the whites, but we are going for maximum contrast in our case.

Alternatively, if you want to sped a little bit more time on your models, you can use Basilicanum grey on the white and Caroburg Crimson on the red, and reserve Nuln Oil for the black and silver only.

This is where working on your whole army, or a full unit at least, pays off, as it is extremely easy to do quickly, and by the time you’re done, the first model’s shade is dry.


Next, we want to bring back the pure bold white on the hair and various fleur de lys across the model.  We do this by touching up the raised areas with Ulthuan Grey first, then with White.

These surfaces are very drybrush friendly because of the heavy texture.  The hair is where it pays to highlight with multiple streaks to mimic strands of hair.


We are using a similar technique to brighten up the red.  First, tough up the cloak with Mephiston Red, then highlight with Evil Sunz Scarlet.

The bright red highs to almost black shadows produces a very striking red in no time.


For helmetless sisters, I would paint the face right after the shading with Nuln Oil.  This is because its easy to fix any mistakes on the hair with our highlights, and you run less risks of hitting the skin color when highlighting anyway, because it’s deep in the model.

Start with Bugman’s Glow, and highlight with Kislev Flesh.  Next wash lightly with Agrax Earthshade.

Skin deviates slightly from our limited palette plan, but it is well worth it.  Messing up on faces is a very big flaw, even on speed painted armies.


Almost any type of base would work with this sisters of battle scheme. I prefer darker tones, like this dark brown we used as it makes the red and white stand out even more.

Lava bases are a little bit complex for the speed painted idea, but would look incredibly nice.

Share your thoughts