Tale of Narrative Gamers: Painting Sylvaneth

Water soaked into Ashtiriel’s roots, quenching the fires on her bark. She still felt them spreading through the jungle, but worse was the feeling of decay and wrongness somewhere near the Heartgrove. Too many spirits had succumb to the flames, each Dryad leaving its death-scream imprinted on her mind, felt as keenly as though the fires still consumed her.

Stomping footsteps shook the ground behind her. She sensed the spirit without need for introduction, its smouldering outrage at the intruders matching her own. Without turning, she addressed the giant. ‘Rouse your brothers. The hunt is on.’

After such heavy losses in the Grudgebringers’ fires and from the Skaven ambush, the escaped Dryads made it deeper into the forest and awoke their larger kin, the Kurnoth Hunters. To counter the threat, the Huntmaster picked up his greatbow and set to tracking the intruders.

Painting the Sylvaneth

As the Grudgebringers entered the jungle with fire, I went for a charred, burning theme for the Sylvaneth. The bark is blackened with soot and fires still smoulder within, but instead of consuming them, their woodland magic contains the flames, making them appear as fiery daemons to the invaders. Fires burn in their eyes and the runes across their bark as they scream nature’s wrath at the interlopers.

Here’s how to do it on the challenge for this month – the Kurnoth Hunters.

Prime with black spray and base coat the whole miniature with Vallejo German Grey (similar to GW Dark Reaper), followed by an all-over black wash. Why grey? There’s no shading black, so a dark grey gives the illusion of black without being a flat colour. The wash also shows some options for us to pick out in smouldering colours.



We’re going to focus on the runes/symbol on the Hunter’s leg. Start with Khorne Red and cover the whole recessed area.



From here, work inwards through the following colours: Mephiston Red, Evil Sunz Scarlet, Troll Slayer Orange and Fire Dragon Bright. Each layer leaves a little of the previous showing at the edges.

Finish with a dot of Flash Gitz Yellow at the brightest points.

Flash Gitz Yellow

Since these things don’t look great when blown up to a hundred times their actual size, here’s one I finished earlier:


Feedback is always good. Let me know what you want to see more or less of. Have you tried out a similar technique?



  1. Hi! I love this scheme and I know it’s been several years since this was posted but I only just started playing sylvaneth and was wondering what you used for the body after you did the base coat/wash? It looks like you did edge highlights or dry brushing in some lighter grey tones but I was hoping you could walk me through it as I’m not the greatest painter



    • Hi, thanks for the comment! You’re right – I did some layers of dry brushing of lighter greys on this. By the look of it (it’s been a while), I think I used a fairly heavy dry brush of GW Dark Reaper, followed by GW Celestra Grey (less than the Dark Reaper and focused on the edges). For any parts you want brighter, go with an even lighter dry brush of GW Ulthuan Grey, but you’ll probably find that just the first 2 dry brushed layers do the job. Sylvaneth lend themselves very well to dry brushing. Drop me a line if you have any more questions, and enjoy the painting!


      • Awesome! Thanks for the reply! It was your paint scheme that got me to pull the trigger on getting into the army, so thanks!!B

        Liked by 1 person

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