Sunday, April 18, 2010

The gaunts go marching!

by: TheGraveMind
With my ever vigilant eye for the possible velociraptor threat (always good to be aware), I started thinking about my hormagaunts. Not only are they very raptor like, but I've lovingly nicknamed them the raptor brood. But today, I'm keeping away of any raptor. So I decided to work on my Anti-Raptor Fighting Force, ARFF. My termagants.

Let me start off by saying. I hate gaunts. I've never been a huge fan, I normally only take them to sit on an objective, and now I take them to get a tervigon as a troop choice. My loathing has only grown these past few days as I've attempted to paint my vast swarm of them.

With the release of the new codex and the amazingness that is the Trooper-pooper, I've had to redesign my termagant squad, and by redesign I mean create from scratch. My original termagants were converted into gargoyles, and all following gaunts were created with spine-fists, and now are obsolete with the new codex. So I had went out and bought two boxes of gaunts, along with the few unassembled I salvaged from by bitz boxes. I built them and primed them and then left them. I also de-converted eight of my gargoyles back into gaunts. This sits me at around 38 termagants, along with my 16 spinegaunts and 25+ hormagaunts.

Yes, this means I've been slowly painting 38 gaunts for the past three days. I've for some reason decided to actually do a good job on these models, and I've taken photos and left some in their stage by stage development to show you all how I paint my Tyranids.
After priming white, I add a watered layer of bleached bone to all of the exoskeleton. I try to make a good overlap onto the carapace to avoid any white spots at the borders. I then put a layer of ogryn flesh wash over it to darken it and add detail.

Then I make a 3:1 black/grey mix and apply that to the carapace. The reason I lighten the black is so it will take detail better and the badab black wash will show a little better. On this model I tried the new tyranid scheme of having a gun a different color. The green wash just didn't cut it for me, so I will not be doing that again.

Here I've added some fading and started painting the stripes. I took my earlier black and mixed it 50/50 with grey. I then added this watered layer to about half way up each carapace piece. I then took that grey and mixed it 50/50 with skull white. This is then painted on half way up the grey layer. The more layers painted on, the harder it is to notice the first layer. I also added a second layer of ogryn wash, to darken it a little bit more and add to the spots that I missed.

The final stage is this. I then add just skull white, and highlight the very edges of each carapace ridge. I also used a Delvan mud wash to darken the spiracles (breathing holes). A badab black went over the carapace to help fade the stripes and make it seem more natural. I added the green wash to the tongue and even took time to detail the teeth and the eyes. This is normally more detail than I would ever put into a gaunt, but decided to practice my painting and show what can be done. I then painted the base a dark brown and added a little grass.

I looked back at my original spinegaunts, and man have I improved since then.

It only took me two hours to layer and finish these four gaunts to have them lined up for this picture. I'd say that isn't too bad for how much detail I put into that final gaunt, but it's not something I ever want to do again.

Why you may ask? Because I have all of these to finish!

The worst part is I'm considering buying another box set, to push me up to 50 gaunts. The reason? I've been thinking about running two tervigons, and the internet says they average about 22 each. Those trooper-poopers are going to be using around 45 gaunts a game, so I need to be ready.

I guess I better quite stalling and get back to work. It's not like I also have five raveners, five hive guard, and my second tervigon to paint after the gaunts...sigh. Good thing I have a few weeks before Ard boyz and Final exams.


  1. Painting little gribblies is a bitch, says the Skaven/Ork player, but yours look nice and didn't take too long, so good on you.

  2. No kidding, I've been prepping for my return to 40k gaming by attempting to get into this paint and play thing at Saltire in Oaklandon. I couldn't make the 750pt month which is this month, but I can make the 1250pt month(May, unsurprisingly). Which of course means I've been working to try and paint 50+ models before the first Thursday. I'm getting there, only have ten normal boyz left, then my 15 lootas, then my big mek, killa kans and deff dred! :p

  3. I feel your pain... I have 48 of each gaunt (and 32 gargoyles... metal ones, no less...). All of mine were spinegaunts, and as many as I had bitz for have been turned into termagants... though this means I have to paint those arms. I have all of mine to at least 3 colors (slightly above), but I haven't detailed the carapace yet (wanted to get them decent looking, then move to other things first).

    My scheme (which I'm sure will make an appearance at some point) is...

    Black base.
    Dark Angels Green
    Snot Green drybrush

    Bestial brown
    Snakebite leather about halfway up
    Vomit brown lined-highlights (can't describe it very well... I was going for what you see in the codex a lot with the black-to-grey lines)

    Tubing/tonges are warlock purple with lich pink.

    Very natural camo look... and the 3rd (and final, dang it!) scheme for my Nids.

  4. I look forward to seeing these green/snakebite tyranids. Luckily my general dislike for gaunts saved me from having too many spinegaunts. I'm not even going to bother fixing them, I'll pay the extra point each for that squad. I think they look cooler than fleshborers anyway.

  5. Nice weathering on that carapace.

  6. I like the contrast of the colours on these guys - they black chitin / carapace really offsets the lighter tones of the flesh very well. Nice job.

  7. Nice! I've got 80 of these things to paint! :(

  8. I think they look pretty darn good, and a clear improvement on before. lol

    I once painted half a 1750 point Ork army in a night...ah, good times. And by 'painted' I mean, 'managed the requisite 3 colours, largely by using Copper, Burnished Gold and Mithril Silver, so the contrast was obvious (on the Deff Dreads), and Orkhide Shade, Boltgun Metal and Adeptus on the Boyz. lol'


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