Monday, June 14, 2010

Tyranid Colour Scheme

Original article was found on: I am currently using this technique to paint my Hive Fleet. Absolutely love the colours so am making sure this article remains with me for a long time by creating an archive of it here!

Painting Hive Fleet Leviathan

If you have already read and followed our Tyranid assembly guides then you'll no doubt be eager to crack open your pots of colours and start painting. Nick Bayton has obliged by showing us how to paint up the three most infamous Hive Fleets. We've used a Tyranid Warrior for the following examples but obviously the following steps can be easily adapted to any Tyranid model as they all share the same, broad characteristics like armoured carapaces and scything talons.

We begin with the purple and off-white pattern that adorns the Tyranids of Hive Fleet Leviathan.

Hive Fleet Leviathan
The greatest of the Hive Fleets encountered so far is Leviathan. Where the majority of other Hive Fleets to date have pierced the intergalactic void upon the Eastern Fringe, Leviathan attacks from a different quarter. The tendrils of Leviathan are funnelling up from beneath the galactic disk. A terrifying prospect as the great doom that has been roughly contained in the eastern arm of the galaxy no longer seems so far away, and the heart of the Imperium lays exposed to the Tyranid threat.

Note that due to the predominance of light colours, Nick started by spraying an undercoat of Skull White.

Stage 1

Before picking out the separate areas, use the Spraygun to coat the entire model in Bleached Bone.
Claws – Paint Chaos Black.
Mouth and tongue – Paint Chaos Black.
Weapon – Paint with a mix of Mechrite Red and Scab Red (1:1).

Stage 1 Rear

Carapace – Paint Chaos Black.

Stage 2
Flesh – Wash with Warlock Purple.
Claws – Feather on Scab Red.
Weapon – Layer on a mix of Mechrite Red and Blood Red (1:1) then wash with Chaos Black directly into the recesses.

Stage 2 Rear

Carapace – Feather on Warlock Purple.

Stage 3
Flesh – Highlight with a mix of Bleached Bone and Skull White (1:1).
Claws – Highlight with Blood Red.
Weapon – Highlight with Blazing Orange.
Eye – Paint Chaos Black.
Tongue – Paint Liche Purple.
Teeth – Paint Khemri Brown.

Stage 3 Rear
Carapace – Feather with a mix of Warlock Purple and Fortress Grey (1:1).

Stage 4
Flesh – Highlight with Skull White.
Claws – Feather with Fortress Grey and then wash with Baal Red.
Weapon – Highlight with Dwarf Flesh.
Eye – Paint with Iyanden Darksun and then apply a gloss varnish.
Tongue – Highlight with a mix of Liche Purple and Bleached Bone and then apply a gloss varnish.
Teeth – Paint Bleached Bone.

Stage 4 Rear

Carapace – Feather with Fortress Grey.


  1. thanks for posting this, its not on the games workshop site anymore as far as i can tell, just what i was looking for.

  2. Thanks dude I was lucky you posted this otherwise I would never have found this as it was removed from Games workshop site as the new paints came in! 10/10

  3. You are all welcomed guys! Keep on painting for the Hivemind!



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