To celebrate the release of the Sisters of Battle Codex for the 10th edition of Warhammer 40.000, I’ve created an extra detailed tutorial for The Order of the Golden Light. This is perfect for all kinds of models in golden armour, such as Stormcast Eternals or Adeptus Custodes (regardless of gender). In this tutorial, I also explain how to paint details like leather, cream-coloured robes, and purity seals, which are universally useful.

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The model shown is Sister Tariana Palos, a limited edition model from the Commemorative Series and unfortunately no longer available. However, the colour scheme can be applied to all models in the Adepta Sororitas range.

This tutorial assumes that you are familiar with the fundamental techniques of painting Warhammer miniatures. I will guide you step-by-step through the paints and techniques I utilized. Since my paint collection is quite varied, I will offer suitable alternatives from the current Citadel paint range [in brackets] whenever I use a paint that is not from Games Workshop or is out of production. However, if your goal is to replicate the exact outcome displayed, I suggest expanding your paint collection.

You’ll find a list of all the paints used in this tutorial at the end of the post.

Sisters of Battle Tariana Palos painted in the colours of The Order of the Golden Light, step-by-step tutorial

How to paint Sister Tariana Palos

Base & golden armour

While painting this model, I kept the base, body, and head separate.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 1

Prime the model (sans the head) with The Army Painter Colour Primer Leather Brown. Then, spray the armour with Warpaints Air Greedy Gold [or apply a couple of thin layers of Warpaints Fanatic Greedy Gold or Retributor Armour with a brush].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 2

Spray the robes with Warpaints Air Skeleton Bone. This is optional but makes basecoating the robes a bit easier later on.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 3

Basecoat the texture of the base with Mechanicus Standard Grey, then drybrush with Corax White. Mix Warpaints Fanatic Strong Tone Wash [or Agrax Earthshade] and Dark Tone Wash [or Nuln Oil] 1:1 and thin this mix with a little bit of medium. Wash the texture of the base.

Patreon bonus content: An expanded version of this tutorial that explains how to paint the scenic base and the flames can be found here.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 4

Paint any parts of the armour the airbrush didn’t catch with Warpaints Fanatic Greedy Gold [or Retributor Armour].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 5

Wash the armour with Reikland Fleshshade. Make sure to soak up any excess with a clean brush, I recommend keeping the model in a vertical position while drying so that gravity doesn’t pull the wash towards the feet.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 6

Drybrush the armour with Fanatic Greedy Gold [or Retributor Armour].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 7

Gently drybrush the armour with Pro Acryl Bright Gold [or Liberator Gold].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 8

Apply Guilliman Flesh into any recesses you want to darken further, and to add definition where the armour meets other parts of the model.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 9

Highlight the gold with Vallejo Model Air Steel. I kept this highlight sparingly, mainly just dots to sharp corners.

Painting the robes

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 10

Basecoat the robes with Warpaints Fanatic Skeleton Bone [or Ushabti Bone].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 12

Mix Fanatic Skeleton Bone [or Ushabti Bone] with Fanatic Leather Brown [or Steel Legion Drab] about 2:1, add a little bit of water, and use this mix to shade the foldes of the robe.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 13

Add more depth to the robe by shading the foldes with Warpaints Fanatic Leather Brown [or Steel Legion Drab].


How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 14

Apply thinned Fanatic Skeleton Bone [or Ushabti Bone] to smoothen the transitions.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 15

Highlight the edges of the robe and sharpest creases with a 1:1 mix of Fanatic Skeleton Bone [or Ushabti Bone] and Fanatic Boney Spikes [or Screaming Skull].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 16

Apply an even thinner highlight of Fanatic Boney Spikes [or Screaming Skull].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 17

Use Pro Acryl Black Wash [or Nuln Oil or thinned Abaddon Black] to shade the inner of the robes.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 18

Highlight the purple areas of the robes with a 1:1 mix of Fanatic Terrestrial Titan [or Naggaroth Night] and
Daemonette Hide.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 19

Add an even finer highlight of Warpfiend Grey to the edges and sharpest creases.

Brown leather

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 20

Basecoat the corset and belts with Two Thin Coats Noble Steed Brown [or Mournfang Brown].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 21

Wash the leather with Pro Acryl Brown Wash [or Agrax Earthshade].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 22

Highlight the leather with AK 3rd Gen Mud Brown [or mix Kislev Flesh into Mournfang Brown].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 23

Apply an even finer highlight of Ak 3rd Gen Cork [or mix more Kislev Flesh into Mournfang Brown].

Polished steel tutorial

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 24

Basecoat the steel with Vallejo Mecha Color Steel [or Iron Hands Steel or Ironbreaker].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 25

Apply Vallejo Xpress Color Wicked Purple all-over as a wash [or mix Nuln Oil with a little bit of Shyish Purple].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 26

Edge highlight the steel with Vallejo Model Air Steel [or Stormhost Silver or Runefang Steel].

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Black details

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 27

Basecoat the black details such as the gun and grenade casings and buttons on the robes with Vallejo Game Color Black [or Abaddon Black].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 28

Mix Game Color Black about 2:3 with AK 3rd Gen Reddish Grey [or just use Skavenblight Dinge] and edge highlight the black.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 29

Apply an even finer highlight of pure AK 3rd Gen Reddish Grey [or use Stormvermin Fur].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 30

Mix AK 3rd Gen Reddish Grey [or Stormvermin Fur] about 1:1 with Vallejo Game Color White [or White Scar] and apply dots to the rivets and corners of the gun casing and grenades.

How to paint purity seals

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 31

Basecoat the purity seals with Two Thin Coats Ivory Tusk [or a 1:1 mix of Pallid Wych Flesh and Rakarth Flesh].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 32

Wash the parchment with a 1:1 mix of Pro Acryl Brown Wash [or Agrax Earthshade] and Contrast Medium.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 33

Layer with Two Thin Coats Ivory Tusk [or a 1:1 mix of Pallid Wych Flesh and Rakarth Flesh], omitting the recesses.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 34

Highlight the parchment with Reaper Master Series Leather White [or Pallid Wych Flesh].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 35

Basecoat the wax seals with Vallejo Game Color Gory Red [or Word Bearers Red].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 36

Wash the seals with Berserker Bloodshade.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 37

Layer with Game Color Gory Red [or Word Bearers Red], while leaving the recesses dark.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 38

Highlight the red wax with Two Thin Coats Evil Eye Red [or mix Word Bearers Red with Ratskin Flesh].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 39

Add a final highlight of TT Combat Brawny Flesh [or Ratskin Flesh].


Icons and additional details

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 40

Basecoat the Inquisitorial icons with AK 3rd Gen Anodized Violet [or just use Iron Hands Steel or Ironbreaker].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 42

Highlight the icons with AK 3rd Gen Anodized Violet [or just use Iron Hands Steel or Ironbreaker, and then apply a glaze of Luxion Purple thinned with Contrast Medium].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 43

Add a final thin highlight of Vallejo Model Air Steel [or Stormhost Silver or Runefang Steel].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 44

Basecoat the icons on the shoulder pads with Warpaints Fanatic Paratrooper Tan [or Steel Legion Drab].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 45

Layer with Fanatic Skeleton Bone [or Ushabti Bone] while omitting the recesses.

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 47

Add an even finer highlight of Fanatic Brainmatter Beige [or mix Screaming Skull with White Scar].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 48

Basecoat the rosary beads with Warpaints Fanatic Terrestrial Titan [or Naggaroth Night

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 49

Layer the beads with Fanatic Alien Purple [or Genestealer Purple].

How to paint Sisters of Battle from The Order of the Golden Light tutorial, step 51

To learn how I painted Sister Tariana Palos’ head check out this tutorial. I painted the head a while ago with The Army Painter’s Skintones set, which is out of production by now.

Patreon bonus content: In the expanded version of this tutorial on my Patreon, I updated the process to match The Army Painter’s current generation of Fanatic paints.

Finishing touches

At this point, I prepared the model for the final assembly. I checked the model for any mistakes I missed and corrected them, and glued the model together.

With the head attached, paint the trim of the base with Vallejo Game Color Black [or Abaddon Black] and add thin lines of black script to the purity seals. Glaze the left foot of the model with several thin coats of Fuegan Orange to represent the flames reflecting in the armour. Finally, varnish the model with a coat of Mr Hobby Premium Topcoat Flat or your favourite matt varnish (you can find a list of my matt varnish recommendations here).

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Sister Tariana Palos painted by Stahly

And here you can see my finalised version of Sister Tariana Palos, painted in the colours of The Order of the Golden Light. If you compare the model to the ‘Eavy Metal Showcase in the Sisters of Battle Codex, you’ll notice I’ve taken some creative liberties. For example, to contrast with the warm golden armour, I’ve used more violet, such as on the inner sides of the robes, the icons, and even shaded the steel with a dark purple. Overall, the painting time was about 9 hours, but since regular Sisters of Battle models are a bit less detailed, the time can be reduced with batch painting.

If you’d like to download this tutorial, please consider supporting me on Patreon. The PDF includes extra high-res images, as well as some additional guides:

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You can get the expanded step-by-step tutorial for my Sisters of Battle here in my Patreon shop (or by becoming an Autarch tier member). This expanded version also covers the flames on the base, a darker leather tone, as well as an updated tutorial for the face.

Paints you will need for this tutorial:

Has my tutorial inspired you to start a Sisters of Battle army? Then feel free to use our affiliate link to expand your collection:

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Hope you enjoyed this tutorial. If so, leave a comment or reaction below, and if you got any questions, leave them here so I can answer them for you.

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