Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Grey Seer Stage-by-Stage Painting Guide


Having completed my first Grey Seer, I posted a few pictures, but wanted to put up a stage-by-stage guide that I hope other new Skaven players will find useful. Unfortunately I don't have pictures of all the stages (one example being after layers but before washes...) but I think you'll get the general idea!

So here we go... (scroll down for finished pics at the end...)

EDIT: Following the launch of the latest Citadel Paint range in 2012, please note that the colours listed below are from the previous range. I hope to have time to rewrite in the future, but for the time being, you can use the conversion chart/ list I made here or use the official Citadel Conversion chart here.

1. Assembly.
  • File down or carefully cut away any flash from the model.
  • Glue to base.
2. 1st Basing.
  • Paint watered-down PVA glue to the base.
  • Dip base into modelling sand
  • Shake away excess and leave to dry
3. Undercoat.
  • Undercoat whole model Chaos Black (I use GW Spray paint.) 
NOTE: I was given this Grey Seer model by a gaming buddy, and it came without the original symbol on the staff, so I added the staff head from my bitz box...

4. Drybrush base.
  • Calthan Brown.
  • Snakebite Leather
5. Basecoat.
Apply base colours to all parts of the model.

  • Boltgun Metal: Sword, helmet, base of staff.
  • Tallarn Flesh: Hands, tail, feet.
  • Dwarf Bronze: Staff symbol, guard on sword, talisman on chain, and chain.
  • Bleached Bone: Skull on staff, horns on helmet, nails on hands/ feet, scrolls.
  • Dark Angels Green: Sigil on sword, warpstone studs on robes.
  • Fortress Grey: Fur.
  • Bestial Brown: Staff, belt.
  • Snakebite Leather: Leather pouch on belt, leather pouch on staff.
  • Chainmail: Bolts on staff symbol.

6. Layers. (Before washes)
  • Robes: Codex Grey/ Fortress Grey(50/50 Mix), then Codex Grey Fortress Grey (25/75 mix) and finally Fortress Grey with some Skull White (75/15 mix).
  • Leather/ Leather Pouches: Snakehide Leather/ Skull White (50/50 mix)
  • Skulls: Skull White over Bleached Bone.
7. Washes.
  • Skin, Tail/ Ears: Ogryn Flesh.
  • Everything else(!): Devlan Mud.
8. Highlights. (After washes)
  • Armour/ weapon edges (e.g. Helmet): Chainmail.
  • Nails on staff symbol: Mithril Silver.
  • Skull: Bleached Bone/ Skull White (50/50 mix)
  • Skin/ Tail/ Ears: Tallarn Flesh/ Dwarf Flesh (50/50 mix)
  • Warpstone: Snot Green/ Skull White (75/25 mix) then building up...Snot Green/ Skull White (50/50 mix), Snot Green/ Skull White (25/75)
  • Skin (Hands, Feet etc.): Dwarf Flesh/ Tallarn Flesh (50/50 mix) and/ or Dwarf Flesh/ Elf Flesh (50/50 mix)
7. Drybrushing.
  • Staff symbol: Dwarf Bronze. 
  • Robes: Fortress Grey. 
  • Staff: Bestial Brown/ Skull White (75/25 mix)
8. Final Basing
In this case, I decided not to add anything to the base other than the colours added previously, but if you wanted to...
  • Dab on a couple of spots of PVA glue.
  • Dip in flock.
  • Shake away excess and leave to dry.

...or not QUITE done, because following advice and comments on other models, I decided to have a go at adding some verdigris to the Dwarf Bronze staff symbol. I had tried this before and so followed the same method.
9. Verdigris Wash.
  • Heavily water down ICE BLUE (10 parts water to 1 part Ice Blue.) You'll need to experiment to find the right balance of water/ paint...
  • Paint or dab onto the bronze symbol, so wash gathers in recesses or raised areas. Feel free to apply quite heavily, but be careful it doesn't drip down the staff.
  • Using a rolled up piece of tissue paper (so it has a point) carefully dab or drain away wash from flat surfaces, leaving the wash gathered around raised areas or in recesses.
NOTE: Don't totally drain away from smooth surfaces...leave a thin film of wash if you can so it dulls down the overall metallic effect.

The finished product. 

Let me know what you think - all comments and suggestions welcome!



  1. Great work as always. I´m not a real fan of the ´old-style' skaven, but you managed to still make this Seer look awesome. (it actually looks better than the one Games Workshop provides, thumbs up!
    A few blogs back you mentioned you were planning to still put up a painting guide for the weapon teams, is that still on? (I would love to know how you managed 'em :) Keep up the good work!

    BTW: My university finally made a contract with a japanese one, located in Akita. So upcoming September i'll be there half a year :) Definitely looking foreward to it, are you familiar with that area?



  2. Hi Shendar - appreciate the compliment.

    Like you, I'm not a big fan of some of the older Skaven models as they can look a bit "busy" (Ikit Claw being a good case in point) especially when next to the new style models. The Grey Seer with the Plague Furnace Bell is a good example of very clean, flowing lines on the new models I think. Having said that I think this older model Grey Seer has a good balance of detail and lines. For some reason, I really like the scrolls...
    Ah, weapon teams!You've caught me on the hop with a guide for them... I keep meaning to dirty the models up a bit first, but haven't got around to it. With a pretty busy work schedule looming it might be a couple of weeks!

    On Akita - I'm afraid I've never been there so don't know what it has to offer!

  3. Okay thanks anyways for such a fast reply. And don´t worry about those weapon teams, I´ve plenty to paint in addition before my brush finds those sneaky units. I´m really amazed at your fast painting rate! (I've actually spend around 60 hours for my first clanrat unit of only 20 miniatures, which annoyed me as there is still so much left to paint!, hope I'll be able to reach your speed painting in the future while still being able to deliver fine quality. Keep up the terrific work!


  4. Exellent blog,
    Great watching your Skaven army come together.

  5. Hi Paulalba and thanks for the comments. I'm afraid it is pretty slow going on the Skaven at the moment but thanks for checking in!

  6. Great stuff! Would you mind if I posted your tutorial on my site too? http://whatmepaint.blogspot.com/
    cheers, B

  7. Hi Black Bard,
    No probs with posting on your site. It looks as though you always attribute the tutorials to the original person anyway right? Please just quote my blog address if you don't mind!


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