Sunday, May 29, 2016

Hive Fleet Ceryx - Paint Formulas

This post will be pretty boring, as I am just outlining the paint ratios/techniques I used for my Tyranids. It's mainly a post for my own reference, so apologies to my legion of rabid fans... 


First I primed the models using Rustoleum Grey Spray Primer. I painted the bases next because there is a lot of messy drybrushing that I did not want to get on the model itself.

Tyranid Bases:

1:1  -  VGC Charred Brown : Magic Wash

This was applied as the basecoat.

1:1  -  VGC Heavy Ochre : Magic Wash

First Layer, allied everywhere but the sides and the recesses.

1:0  -  GW Agrax Earthshade Wash

A nice coat over the Ochre to get the shading down.

1:3  -  VGC Heavy Ochre : GW Yriel Yellow

This was the first drybrush. Applied more liberally to bring out the brightness. (n.b. I originally used VGC Sun Yellow but this is a shitty shitty paint that separates and flakes like a mofo, so I have substituted it. I am sure it won't make a big difference in the overall look.)

1:0  -  VGC Bonewhite

This was a light drybrush to pick out the raised detail in the bigger rocks & rock slabs.

Tyranid Skin:

1:1  -  VGC Somber Grey : Magic Wash

This was applied quickly over all the regular "skin" areas.

1:0  -  GW Drakenhof Nightshade

A wash over the skin areas. Make sure to get all the nooks and crevasses, the smaller bugs are especially tricky for this.

1:0  -  Somber Grey 

This was a quick drybrush to lighten areas that were washed too dark (and likely unnecessary, but is done so quickly that it does not slow down paint time at all)

1:0  -  VGC Cold Grey

Another drybrush as a highlight, also relatively quick and dirty.
1:0  -  Magic Wash 

This just gives the skin a nice sheen.


1:1  -  VGC Cold Grey : Magic Wash

This is relatively straightforward.

1:0  -  GW Nuln Oil

Easy - just wash all chitin areas with a thick layer of wash. Don't be stingy! (Edit: I may have done two coats, or at least one good one and then added a quick second layer in the recesses for more definition.)

1:2  -  VGC Cold Grey : Magic Wash

This first step is mainly to lighten the chitin, using a wet-brush technique, feather all areas of chitin, pulling the brush from the inner part of the plate to the edge. Do this a few times over each plate to get the ridge effect started.

1:1  -  VGC Dead White : Magic Wash

As above, but try and make the lines thinner. Many quick feather coats will be required to give it the proper texture.

Afterwards, use the ratio above to edge highlight the chitin plates to finish them up.


2:1:1  -  VGC Heavy Red :VGC Black : Magic Wash

Go over the claws and teeth/gums with the above ratio. 2 coats may be necessary. (For teeth/gums, skip to last step)

2:1  -  VGC Heavy Red : Magic Wash

Use one or two coats to start bringing the dark base up to a proper red. Leave the base of each claw the original colour, and apply it to the last 90% (approx) of the claw. With each subsequent coat, apply to a smaller percent of the claw, going from dark to light as you get to the tip.

1:1  -  VGC Gory Red : Magic Wash

Same as above, focus more towards the end half of the claw. For larger class, Consider adding some streaks into the darker bits for texture. 

1:1  -  VGC Bloody Red : Magic Wash

This is the main edge highlight for the claws/Tyranid models, but may need to add more gradients to the bigger Monstrous Creature claws. A few streaks, edge highlighting, focus near the claw tips as above.

1:1  -  VGC Dead White : Magic Wash

Use this to pick out the teeth with a fine detail brush

Maws/Tissue & Joint Ribbing:

This to me is the most tedious step, because you are painting small, often recessed areas while trying not to ruin the  paint job around it. There may be a more efficient way of doing this, but I can't think of it.

2:1  -  VGC Heavy Red : Magic Wash

Apply this to the maw area around the teeth/gums, and to any ribbing/exposed joints. Two coats will be required at a minimum, due to the stupid nature of VGC Heavy Red.

1:0  -  GW Agrax Earthshade

Carefully apply this wash to the areas painted above, making sure it does not bleed to other areas.
1:1:1:1:?  -  VGC Dead White : VGC Fiery Orange : VGC Bloody Red  :  VGC Heavy Red : Magic Wash

(Not exactly sure about the ratio of wash, 1-2 is probably fine) This makes a lot of paint for a very small area. However, there is no easy way around it. Basically you are using this with a wet-brush technique to edge highlight the ridges on the skin and the maws

1:0 Magic wash

As with the skin, this just makes it a bit more glossy and organic.


1:1  -  VGC Dark Green : Magic Wash

Easy, just go over the entire eye, may need two coats to get a good green base.

1:1  -  VGC Escorpena Green : Magic Wash

Again, go over most of the eye with this. Leave a bit of dark green in the deeper part of the eye.

1:1  -  Dead White : Magic Wash

This would be used to add a little reflective "dot" on the eye of bigger Tyranids. Don't bother on the smaller models.


1:1  -  VGC Royal Purple : Magic Wash

Use this to basecoat the tongues of your models.

2:1:2  -  VGC Dead White : VGC Royal Purple : Magic Wash

This is the edge highlight for the tongue.

(n.b. For the larger bugs, you can consider washing the purple basecoat with either a GW purple wash or possibly just Nuln Oil. Then use a mid purple as a mid-tone before adding the highlights above.)


And that's it! Will add more to this as I get to it (i.e. Leathery wings, various Tyranid guns, Zoanthrope brain tissue, etc.)

1 comment:

  1. It's really good to document this stuff. Seriously. I have spent so much time trying to figure out old schemes I used....