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Painting undead is not easy, even if you've mastered painting dead flesh. I've collected my thoughts on the subject of painting miniature zombies and other undead.

Most undead look quite similar, and the focus of the miniature is usually on the torso of the miniature, as that is that part that has clothes to highlight, or have some nice damage, dangling intestines that can be painted in lively colours.

Undead samples with realistic colour

Here are some undead paintjobs, that feature realistically pale or rotten skin colour, with faded clothes:

Undead image 1 from sho3box: Running out of Patients Pt 2

Undead image 1 from Maledrakh (from The Mountains of Minis): The Ghoul Goon Squad

Undead image 1 from Maledrakh (from The Mountains of Minis): Ghouls, Ghouls , Ghouls! and starting the Lost Crusade.

Undead image 1, Undead image 2Undead image 3 from Maledrakh (from The Mountains of Minis): Actually getting something done at last, part 2: Mantic (and Reaper) Zombies and Ghouls

These are technically perfect, and they look fine in a group, from artistic perspective the contrast is lacking from these.

Undead samples with added constrast

Here are some further samples that implement contrast, but that are still lacking that "extra" that would make them outstanding:

Undead image 1, Undead image 2 - from Neldoreth (from An Hour of Wolves): Undead Gallery

Undead image 1 from sho3box: Running out of Patients Pt 1

Undead image 1 from Mikko Meriläinen (manatic) (from Dawn of the Lead): Blood Bowl-a-rama #8 – Two ghoul for school

Undead image 1 from Mikko Meriläinen (manatic) (from Dawn of the Lead): Blood Bowl-a-rama #9 – Zombie incursion

Undead image 1 from Keith (from Keith's Wargaming / Painting Blog): From the Painting Table 4

These look wonderful in a cabinet or on the playing area. However if you'd like some undead to stand out from the crowd, or if you'd like to win painting competitions, you should find some way to make them visually more interesting.

Undead samples with visually interesting effects

Here are some images, where the painters guide the eye with the use of bright red gore.

The red on the hands is a very good solution. On some of the undead there is some additional red on the head to help the effect.

Undead image 1, Undead image 2, Undead image 3, Undead image 4 from Neldoreth (from An Hour of Wolves): Undead Gallery

Undead image 1 from SpeedyFrenchy (from Colours and Eagles): Mantic Ghouls #2

Here you can see the paintjob leading from the red right tight to the red left hand.

Undead image 2 from SpeedyFrenchy (from Colours and Eagles): Mantic Ghouls #2

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Do you have further ideas about undead miniature painting? What is your take on this? Do you have questions? Tell us in the comments!

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