Painting 28mm Aragorn from The Heroes of Helm's Deep Boxed set

I’m not sure really why but the movie that I favour most out of the Lord of the Rings trilogy is The Two Towers. Of course I enjoyed all three epics because to me they were second to none in terms of storyline and special effects.

I think I favour The Two Towers because it had a darker mood as compared to the other two. By the way, nothing completes my collection of The Two Towers figures collection without the character Aragorn.


This character is from The Heroes of Helms Deep boxed set by Games Workshop. There are 8 white metal miniature figures in the boxed set and it is actually a good deal since it cost me S$78 - less than $10 per figure.

The Aragorn miniature figure at first did not stand out to me when I compared it to the other Aragorn miniature figures from the first movie, The Fellowship of the Ring. However after putting enough effort on painting the face of the character, I began to appreciate the superb worksmanship of the miniature sculptor, Brian Nelson. It really looks like the character /actor Viggo Mortensen.

Cleaning up and priming the miniature figure

The first thing before anything else is to snip off the mould flash and file away any mould lines from the figure with a needle file. Make sure all visible mould lines are cleaned properly cause it will become an eyesore later during the painting stages. Slightly more work now but less hassle later. Next I used a spray can cover and bluetacked the base of the miniature figure securely.

The first thing I did was priming the figure with a Tamiya fine surface primer. Give it 2 light coats with an interval of 3 minutes in between to let it dry. If it takes a longer time to dry, it means that the coat is too thick.

With a Tamiya black aerosol spray I began undercoating the figure. I began the basecoating the part by giving the figure short controlled spraying to cover the whole miniature figure with thin black coat (careful not to overspray and overcoat too thickly cause it will cover up the fine details of the miniature).

Give it bet 2-3 light coats overall. Should there be areas which have been missed by the black spray, I just used Matt black acrylic paint to cover up those areas.

Painting 28mm Aragorn with limited colors

Once I'm done with the undercoat, the first thing I wanted to tackle was painting the face of the miniature figure. Armed with a good picture of Aragorn, I set to the task. For this painting session and some previous ones, I seldom just use one type of brand of acrylics.

In fact for this session I used a combo of Games Workshop, Vallejo Model Color and Tamiya acrylics. The first two brands works well together but I only use Tamiya as a primer or as black washes. Some modelers are fussy about using one type of brand- well it is up to each individual´┐Żs choice. As long as you can get the results that you aim for, go for it.

Highlights first than mid-colors

The first step was drybrushing the most prominent areas of the face with Vallejo Offwhite to establish the lightest areas of the face. Once done, I used thinned down GW Dwarf Flesh color to fill in the skin color. For the deepest recesses of the face, I just used a single thin coat on that area, while the other areas I gave 2-3 coats depending on the finish.

The best part about having the darkest shade and highlights from the beginning is that there is no more guessing game about how much darker or lighter my base color should go. All I need to focus now is how much white or thinned down paint I need to add to feather with my white highlights and black shades. For the deep recesses, I just paint with a more thinned down color onto the black undercoat.

At various point after every section, I reinspected each of the areas (due to small the size) which I missed and cover those area with respective colors.


For the lips and the recesses under the cheek bones, I applied thinned down Games Workshop Dark Flesh to give the figure some reddish tinge. The eyes were put in using a sharpened toothpick using Matt Black color. I proceeded by giving the hair some drybrushing with Leather Brown as highlights.

The moustache and beard were a combo of Vallejo’s leather brown and a wash of Tamiya Matt black thinned down with acrylics thinner.

The leather armguards and leathers straps and belt were painted in using the same technique using Leather Brown from Vallejo Model Color.

The leather tunic were also painted in same color but I gave it a black wash to make look darker. I then added all these colour with some white, thinned them down with water and used them as highlights on the most proiminent areas respectively.

I used a small amount of Dark Flesh for the handle of the knife. Some Vallejo Green Brown were used on the boots and then some white were mixed in as highlights.

As for the pants it was a mixture of Matt Black and Leather Brown in 80/20 ratio.

The gold sections of the sword sheath were Vallejo’s White Gold alcohol based paint and I drybrushed some Games Workshop Mithril Silver for the chainmail areas as well as painting the sword with the same color.

To add some contrast, I thinned down Tamiya Matt black with Tamiya acrylics thinner and apply a wash into the deep recesses of the figure.

Basically that was all the colors I used to paint 28mm Aragorn from the The Two Towers boxed set. I hope this guide helps in establishing that even with limited colors, you can actually improvise and come up with a nice piece of work. Hope you enjoyed this article. Happy modeling!