How To Paint: Bloodborne Church Giant

The Bloodborne board game that was released a few months back has some amazing quality miniatures. As a fan of the Soulsborne series, I was elated to get this in from the kickstarter.

Recently, I’ve decided to start painting them, and I wanted to start with the Church Giant. I remember the first time I saw them in game, and was fairly intimidated by their large stature and massive axe.

And while they have a fairly easy paint scheme, there are a few certain colors that are present in the digital version.

I should note that I used zenithal priming on these models.


The cloak was my favorite part to paint of this model. Since the model is supposed to look dirty and ragged, I actually found that drybrushing was the best way to proceed with it.

So, to begin, I started with a light gray. Specifically, I used Vallejo Sky Grey, however, I think Ulthuan Grey would work as well. Just be sure to thin it out and apply two coats.

After that dries, you can then apply the wash. We will be dry brushing the whole thing so we can cover the cloak in Nuln Oil. I found that the Nuln Oil wash will give it a dusty, kind of grimy look, while not interfering with the white color.

Lastly, dry brush the crap out of it with Pure White. You can be liberal with it from the zenith of the model, and lessen it’s usage the further down you go.

I added this for the Giant’s mask as well, then followed it up with a light wash of Nuln Oil to darken it.


For the skin, I wanted to go with more of an pale purple. I’ve always liked that look for undead models as it gives a sort of cold, bloodless look.

I decided to go with Dark Elf Skin from Reaper as the base coat. I then coated the purple with Druchii Violet wash. I then built up the color with Cold Flesh from Vallejo, being sure to follow the musculature on the abdomen and chest.

After doing the Cold Flesh highlight, I then added a lighter wash of Druchii Violet to some of the sections that appeared too bright for my taste.


In the game, the pants are more of a grey, however, I didn’t like the way all of that white/grey looked, so, decided to go with a dirty khaki color.

For the base color, I went with Khaki Shadow from Reaper. There are a lot of tears and holes in the pants, so, be mindful of where those are when you’re applying the base coat.

After that dries, apply a wash of Agrax Earthshade in the folds of the pants. Then, pick out the highlights with Faded Khaki from Reaper.

I also used the Khaki Shadow for the rope. Really, any Ochre like color would suffice.

Metals and Weapon Handle

The metals were quite simple really. A hard metallic base coat (Shadowed Steel in this case) with a light wash of Nuln Oil around the recesses, followed by a dry brush of Necron Compound.

For the wooden handle of the axe, I used Walnut Brown followed by a line highlight of Faded Khaki. I tried to give an illusion of woodgrain without picking out each line individually.


Lastly is the base. And while you can do whatever basing you like, I am a personal fan of this muddy look. I used Stirland Mud and coated it on around the figure.

After giving it a liberal wash of Agrax Earthshade, I then dry brushed it with Ushatbi Bone. I feel it gave it a nice dirty look that you’d find in that universe.

I really enjoyed painting this guy, and hope that one day soon I can get some games of Bloodborne in so I can really appreciate him on the table top.

Hopefully, you got something out of this quick tutorial. If you like what you read, be sure to subscribe. I try to do at least one post a week.

Happy painting!

Hobby Help: Quick and Easy Red Armor

Today, I’d like to share my quick and easy recipe for, what I consider, an above tabletop quality red armor. I’m currently using this recipe for my Genesis chapter Space Marines, but it would work well with Blood Angels, Chaos Warriors, and pretty much anything that you want to have red armor.

Red is actually my favorite color to paint. It’s versatile, pretty hard to mess up, and well, it’s just a good color. So, let’s get to the recipe.

Step 1:

First thing is first. Do a zenithal highlight. If you don’t know what zenithal priming is, you can read my article on zenithal priming here. This will allow the red in the more recessed areas to remain darker. Be sure to get a solid covering over the entire miniature.

He’s not getting painted red, but, here’s a great example of zenithal rattlecan priming

Step 2:

Next, you will want to get your red out. For Blood Angels, Genesis, Order of the Bloody Rose, as well as any other armor you’d like this shade of red, use Mephiston Red. Get a nice dollop of it and put it on your wet palette. Get your thinner and give it two or so squirts. If your thinner is in a citadel style bottle instead of a dropper, I highly suggest either transferring them to a ketchup bottle, or, getting some Vallejo thinner instead. The dropper will make it much easier to add to the palette.

You can see some of the ‘pre-shades’ from the zenithal prime job

You will probably need to get at least two thinned down coats onto your miniature before moving on. The beauty of thinned paints is that they will allow for the shading to show underneath, and the more you saturate an area with that thinned color, the brighter that color will be.

Step 3:

For a quicker result, we can do an all over wash on the model. For red, I almost always exclusively use a purple wash. This contrasts better with the red and will make the end result pop even more.

After the wash dries, we will reapply the Mephiston Red as a drybrush layer. Be sure to make sure most of the paint is off of your brush before drybrushing. I like to come from the top down, that way it reinforces the zenithal highlight.

Our 3 steps so far

Step 4:

In the next step, we will need our next shade of red. You will want to go with a more darker scarlet shade of red. Personally, I use Vallejo’s Vermillion, however, if you’re sticking with the Citadel paint range, Evil Suns Scarlet will be a great choice. You can then use this to do a drybrush highlight. Once again, focus on the areas that will be ‘facing the lightsource’ of the model. And with it being a highlight, you do not want to go in as heavy as you did in the drybrush layer.

Step 5:

Finally, we will want to really make it pop with the final highlight. In the most prominent highlighted areas, do a small line highlight of a lighter scarlet color. Wild rider red is a great choice for Citadel paints. If you use Vallejo, go with Scarlet.

The final stage of red should look something like this. There’s a lot of subtle blending going on with the slightly saturated scarlet colors

And that’s that! While it won’t win you any Golden Daemons, it is a quick and easy way to really churn out some marines or knights. Later, I’ll discuss the methods of doing a more layered approach to painting, instead of a drybrush method.

And don’t forget, subscribe for more tutorials!

Hobby Help: Zenithal Priming with Rattle Cans

In the before times, I primed with whatever I had available. In my blissful ignorance, I simply thought a base coat of whatever would be fine. I never gave much thought as to what I was base coating with, simply that it was a vessel to allow me to paint.

While, yes, that’s all fine and good, and I’m not going say that’s strictly inferior, I’ve realized that there are more beneficial ways to prime. I started looking at the shade of what I wanted to paint, and going with how light I wanted the miniature I was painting to be.

Fast forward to about a year ago, when I finally decided to try zenithal priming. I had always thought that you needed to do it with an airbrush, which, while I have one and do use one on occasion, I would rather use a brush. I saw a great tutorial by Dana Howl that mentioned rattle can zenithal priming, and I haven’t looked back.

Make sure you use a flat primer. Citadel primers are fantastic, but, I also find Rust-oleum primers work very nicely as well.

First, what is zenithal priming? Zenithal priming is a way to base coat your model to help represent the way light naturally lands on real life objects. The light comes from the zenith, which, is where you get it’s name. You will need flat black, grey, and white primers.

So, I have some Bloodborne miniatures that I’ve been itching to paint, and thought it would be a good time to help explain this process. First, spray the entire model black. Be sure to do multiple short bursts so that the the paint does not get too thick, as you’ll be doing multiple colors.

After that paint dries, you then do a priming layer of grey. You’ll want to focus this on the areas that the light shines on, but, not directly. If you’re looking at the miniature, and having the light source directly on top, you’ll want to aim for about a 45 degree angle around the top half of the model.

Lastly, comes the direct light source. Using the white primer, spray directly over the top of all of models. As the spray falls, it will land on all the areas that will be more directly hit by the natural light.

The end result should look something like this

Here’s a quick diagram I found, all credit goes to Board Game Quest. You can read their article here. They’ve got a lot of great info and I highly suggest following them.

Honestly, you can even use this method of priming for helping pick out highlights for when your painting. However, this method really shines for when you use glazes to paint over the minis. The dark and light areas will respectively shade and brighten where you primed.

In a future article, I’ll discuss how to do use glazes to achieve the most out of zenithal priming.

4 Surprising Ways to Declare Victory Over Hobby Burnout

In my last post, I briefly discussed some of the frustrations and burnout that I was experiencing for the past month or so. These periods frequently come and go for a miniature hobbyist, however, sometimes the periods are so bad, you can’t help yourself from purging all your miniatures and starting over.

We’ve all been to that point. We’ve looked at our pile of shame and thought to ourselves, “Why do I have this? I’ll never get to it”, only to sell it and regret it later. I’ve gone through multiple periods of this, and from my experience, I’ve regretted almost every single time.

Before it gets to the ‘purging stage’, there are things you can do to prevent that. I’d like to share some of my experiences, as well as some of the ways I’ve learned to avoid the possible regret that comes later.

  1. Take An Inventory of What You Have:
    One of the biggest obstacles I’ve faced with hobby burnout is the pile of shame. It’s an overwhelming feeling to know that you spent money on all these games or kits, and you just freeze there like a deer in headlights. So, take an inventory! You don’t know what you have to work on until you look at all of it.
    Pull out your pile (or in my case, closet) of shame and sort it via factions. If you have multiple gaming systems you play, separate it by game, then faction. By doing this, you will see exactly what you have and give you a much clearer picture of the mountain you’re facing.
    From there, I like to take a ‘time inventory’ of what I have. So, I will estimate exactly how long each kit will take. The breakdown I generally use is- 30-45 minutes per infantry, 3-4 hours for a vehicle or monster, and heroes will generally be between 1 hour and 2 hours, depending on if they have a mount/vehicle or not. These times will also need to account for assembly if applicable. While not 100% accurate, this will give you a general idea of how long it will take you to finish a certain portion of the pile, and you can generally weigh that against what time you personally have available.
    Seeing the time investment you will need to put into new factions, games, etc., can always snap you back to reality on what you really want to paint/build/play, and can even get you excited for what you want to play as you won’t feel that overwhelming shadow from your shame pile.
    This will also allow you to really see what you want to keep, and would help get a little extra cash back into your pocket.
  2. Have a Palate Cleanser Project:
    This may seem counter productive to the previous entry, but, just hear me out. When you have 2000 points of Orks, you get really sick of painting green. It’s a lot of green. I mean… A LOT of green. Most individuals will get burned out of painting the same green base, green shade, and green highlight 200+ times only to then have to go back over and paint all the armor and clothing. It can get incredibly dull if you are doing that sort of assembly line painting for such a large army.
    So, to combat this, get a palate cleanser project. This can be pretty much anything. I’d suggest something small, like a box set of something unrelated, or even a starter set from another game that you don’t play as much, or are just dipping your toes into. Something that I have used in the past are Malifaux gang boxes. You have some varied paint schemes in the set themselves, while also having a limited number of miniatures to paint. So, if you don’t make a lot of progress quickly, it’s alright, you don’t have the same mountain to climb as painting a massive army of Orks.
    I’d also very strongly suggest Reaper miniatures as palate cleansers. These are great things to just break away from your standard painting style and try something new. You finish them up and they look great on your shelf, and, more often than not, you feel refreshed after painting one or two of them. With all the different designs and models they have, you would for sure find something new to try.
    Doing terrain and scenery is also a very good cleanser as well.
  3. Make a Completion Sheet:
    This is something that should not only help you feel accomplished in your hobby, but help prevent your pile of shame from getting too large. You can use this sheet I’ve linked here, and keep track of your kits purchased and completed. I will be using this to make myself not get too deep into new armies before completing what I have. Feel free to download it and make adjustments for how you’d like to use it.
    The theory behind this is to see completion and accomplishment. We can all look at our pile getting smaller, but, it’s really cool to see the total number of completed models go up as a definitive piece of data. I find this motivating, and it makes me want to complete more.
  4. Take a Break:
    Sometimes, the best reset can be just walking away. We’re human (well, most of us anyways). We have a limited amount of interest to place into certain things, and sometimes we just need to let it reset naturally. Distance makes the heard grow fonder after all. Let your brain cool off and get back to it the next week. You’ll be surprised how much you missed it.