Mark of the Beast: Choosing a paint scheme for Beasts of Chaos

Ross details how he picked the perfect colours for his monstrous horde

Painting is not my strongest hobby suit, but I can turn out a decent, cohesive force pretty quickly. Something I am always happy to do before jumping into an army is test my paint schemes. I cannot emphasise the importance of it. When you’ve got to paint a hundred tiny soldiers, you really want to be confident you can do it well and quickly!

I’ve not generally done much organic or distressed painting before. I tend to go more “parade dress” with my armies, although I had started fiddling around a bit with weathering powders to get a more realistic look. Making beastmen look truly beastly, however, was going to be an interesting challenge. I knew that I would be going for a relatively traditional look for them, which I felt comfortable doing as long as I could get their metal elements right.

While looking at Slave to Darkness as a potential force, I bought some chaos warriors to test out colour schemes on. One of the things that reinforced my decision not to progress with that army was that I simply didn’t enjoy painting the models as much as I thought I would. That being said, it was an opportunity to try rusting up some armour.

The new Runelord Brass, Armourshade, Canoptek Alloy progression was something I wanted to test and I think it works well for a brassy armour. After some initial experiments with red and orange rusting (and going a little overboard) a friend pointed out that brass oxidises blue. This was an annoyingly good point. I tried out some Nihilakh Oxide on the right-hand shield but while I liked what the paint did, it wasn’t in keeping with the colours I was leaning towards.

Citadel Chaos Warriors painted in various test colour schemes
The yella’ fella on the leftis just a single coat of Nazdreg Yellow contrast. It’s such a good colour I’m tempted to do an Imperial Fist force based on it!

A test batch of bestigors arrived, and boy are they the best gors! The kits are showing their age a little but have an excellent level of detail for cranking through whole squads. Below is my first test model – and I straight up loved it. My main learning was that the mould lines on the kit are very pronounced and that I need to take greater care with them.

I was expecting to have to do a few variations, but the red / brass / browns just works for me. I need to spruce up the bases and mess around with some UHU glue for chunkier gore, but in outline – the herd’s markings are set.

A finished bestigor model from two angles
A suitably beastly beastman

Paint scheme

Undercoat: Wraithbone Spray

  1. Base Layers:
  • Skin – Guilliman Flesh
  • Armour plates – Runelord Brass
  • Ring mail and blades – Leadbelcher
  • Fur – Gore-Grunta Fur.
  • Hooves – Basilicanum Grey
  • Horns and wood – Skeleton Horde
  • Leather – Snakebite Leather
  1. Heavy Agrax Earthshade Wash all over:
  • Seriously, don’t be shy with the Agrax
  1. Highlights:
  • Skin – Rakarth Flesh layer highlights
  • Armour plates – Canoptek Alloy edge highlights
  • Fur, horns, wood, leather – Wraithbone drybrush
  • Eyes – Orange
  1. Weathering/Effects
  • Rust – Secret Weapon Rust Red, then Secret Weapon Rust Orange
  • Blood – Blood for the Blood God
  1. Next steps:
  • Spruce up the bases
  • Add some goooooore

By Ross

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