Wednesday, 7 April 2021

Tau Operative


A long time ago, before I started this blog, I had a little force of Tau. I converted them to be 1950s-style little green men and clanky robot suits, because... well, I'm not sure why, exactly, but it seemed like a good idea at the time. I guess it does make sense - bear with me - because the Tau do look slightly like the kind of aliens who fly around the mid-US in saucers and have an unwholesome interest in farmers. I thought it would be good to update the old models a bit and make them more presentable.

So, here is our first 1950s Tau person. He's a high-ranking operative who gives the orders and then retires to the shadows to watch them being carried out. With his human business suit, mobile phone and cigarette, no puny Earthmen will ever suspect him of being up to anything dubious.


"Burn the bodies, hide the saucer, never call this number again"



This model was made from a Tau tank commander, with arms from the Pathfinder sprues and an upper body from an old Mordheim soldier. The tie was sculpted by me, unsurprisingly. While I've generally tidied him up and given him a repaint for this post, the original conversion was done some years back. It must have been quite a while ago, as he's holding his cigarette in what I think is an imitation of the villain from The X-Files.

Thursday, 1 April 2021

Even More Repainted Chaos Marines

This time, it's the third and probably final batch of old chaos marines. These were enjoyable to paint, but I am starting to get a bit tired of doing the same paint scheme. 

Left to right: metal possessed marine with new "normal" right arm (he came without a right arm); unconverted champion model; plastic chaos marine with mechanical right arm and Sigmarine head. 



The next two are old metal models. The guy on the left is an old chaos lord model, which came without a head and hands. I added a boltgun, a horned head and a staff-type-thing made from the haft of a chaos knight's spear with a symbol on the top.

The guy on the right is an old standard bearer, who came without the top of his standard. I made a new one out of a plastic chaos icon stuck on a bit of spear. There's a hole in his fist so that the top of the spear just pushes inside. That way I can take the icon off to store him more easily (and lose it).



I'm pleased with these models: given how old they are, and that they come from the rather lumpy "red period" of GW sculpts, I think they've come out quite well. They'll be a decent unit, assuming they ever see the table. 



Thursday, 25 March 2021

More Repainted Chaos Marines

 Here's the second batch of chaos marines that I've repainted from their dirty white colour scheme to a new not-Black-Legion look. As before, they're a mixture of old metal chaos models and plastic conversions incorporating plastic chaos marine and Space Wolf parts. 


Left to right: unconverted metal missile launcher guy; champion with Space Wolf torso and cloak; extremely old converted marine with mouth from an ancient plastic space ork.




Left to right: very old plastic marine with head of a Nurgle plaguebearer and shoulder spike from a genestealer's tail; weeny unconverted metal marine with flamer; plastic marine with chaos marauder arms, axe and head.




I'm not sure whether these guys are favoured by the chaos gods or cursed, but they certainly rolled high on some table or other. I particularly like the champion (well, his power sword), screaming mouth guy and the bloke with the axe. Who wouldn't want to join the forces of chaos after seeing these lucky chaps?

I always thought that the old chaos sculpts were rather crappy and second-rate, but the more of these I make, the more I like the models. Yes, they're a bit on the small side, but the kits give real opportunity for bizarre conversions and personalisations. Only a few more of the horde to go!



Friday, 19 March 2021

Old Chaos Marines Repainted

About 20 years ago, I bought some plastic Chaos Space Marines from a toy shop. They were pretty crude: the head and body were one piece (the body didn't have a neck, either) and the joint between the legs and torso was flat, limiting the range of poses. Anyhow, I did some conversions on them, which were not bad given the limitations of the models and my own ineptitude.

About 2 years ago (at any rate, before the pandemic) I tidied up some of the conversions and gave them a repaint. I painted the armour white and washed it with strong tone, for a grimy finish. While this made the conversions stand out, it did make the models just look a bit messy, and they didn't fit with the rest of my army, who have a roughly Black Legion colour scheme.

So, I dismantled some of the models where necessary, and gave them a repaint. They all got black armour with brass trim, but on each model I added another colour, usually to highlight some interesting (often converted) feature. So here they are!


Left to right: Bulked out body and weird tube - this guy had had so many repaints and conversions that most of the detail on him had vanished under glue and inept knifework. He's also blurry, which might be for the best. Spindly legs - these came from an ancient plastic genestealer. His head and body are one piece. I think his axe came from a chaos knight. Big gun - this chap is unconverted and solid metal. He's a real lump. Getting a decent picture was really difficult.




Left to right: Fly head - the head came off a Kill Team Rogue Trader model. I really like it, especially the arm holding his gun, perhaps pointing out a target. Pincer arm - this chap has an old arm from a chaos mutations sprue and a head from a chaos warrior. Snake body - this was originally the lower part of a Slaaneshi warhammer chaos champion (I think) that I chopped up many years ago.




I've got a few more of these odd conversions and old marine models. Yes, they're a bit small and wacky, especially compared to modern chaos marines, but they have a certain Realm of Chaos charm, and I like the colour scheme. 

Sunday, 14 March 2021

Throgg (again)

Yesterday I posted a new post about making a model of Warhammer's Throgg the Troll King from a plastic Age of Sigmar Khorgorath. For some odd reason, Blogger decided to post it later down the blog instead of at the top. So, here's a link to the actual post: The Throgg Conversion

And here's a couple of pictures of the result:





Monday, 8 March 2021

Antares Leader a la H.R. Giger

 After last time's harlequin in Moebius-style colours, I dug an old Warlord Games model out and tried to paint it in the colours of H.R. Giger.

Just in case you were wondering, Giger was the chap who designed the Alien and painted a wide range of rather odd pictures in his signature biomechanical style. Here's the Alien:




And here's one of the dead spaceship pilot from Alien:




(Finding a Giger picture that wasn't obviously depicting a load of melted willies was difficult. The things I do for this blog...)

The miniature I used is a leader for the Isorian faction from Gates of Antares which I bought in a sale ages ago. The Isorians have a very biomechanical feel, and the ridged armour of the leader, which seems to be part of her as much as something that she wears, felt as if it would work well with his style.

I'd always assumed that Giger painted in black and white: in face, he uses quite a lot of blue and sepia tones, so I tried to incorporate those. I used washes of black contrast paint, Strong Tone and Dark Tone over white and bone-white undercoats, to get subtle differences, along with some (probably invisible) pink glazes on the flesh. 

Unsurprisingly, the face got the lightest shading, which is good as the eye should be drawn there. I don't really like the space pinapple/cactus that she's hovering over, but otherwise I think it's a really cool model that grew on me the more work I did on it.





Throgg the Troll King

 Throgg the Troll King is a character from the old Warhammer Chaos army. I think he got killed off in the Age of Sigmar reforms/purges, but he still appears in the Total War game. Basically, he's a huge troll with delusions of nobility. In the old rules, he enabled you to take an army based around trolls: probably not very effective, but a lot of fun. I thought I'd have a go at making my own version.



My version wouldn't be terribly exact - he'd look more like an orcs and goblins troll rather than the more warped chaos version, and he'd probably be pretty chunky. So, as the basis for Throgg, I would need a large, solid model that would give space for sufficient conversion. I went for the Age of Sigmar Khorgorath.

I think with Games Workshop these days, there are generally no really bad sculpts, but some pretty weak ideas. The Khorgorath gets close to being a weak sculpt, and is a really bad idea. It's just a mess: a great big lumpy body that looks almost too chunky to move, with a load of weird and wonky details on top. Strange snake/pincer/vertebrae things are rising from its back. There are skulls apparently pushing their way out of its kneecaps (why?). It looks like a lot of slightly half-cocked ideas put together because they seemed cool.


Huh?

So the first thing was to use thinned down DAS clay to cover most of this nonsense up. The big khorne symbol on its chest went too, as did the head and hands. The hooves (again, weird hooves) were cut off too. Eventually, what I had was a smoothed-down version of the original without, er, extremities.

The hands came from leftover giant parts that I bought on ebay. I shortened the giant's club somewhat, and stuck a brazier from a scenery piece on top. I painted the brazier as full of rocks, to function as Throgg's "sceptre".

Then I took a deep breath, and started sculpting him a new head and feet. I sculpted the feet on bits of paper.



Yes, that's his face: a ball of DAS clay with a frown drawn on it. I only did this to get the rough idea of where his features would go. Then I started sculpting a face. I'm not very good at this, but thankfully, trolls are fundamentally ugly. I did this over several days, allowing the green stuff to dry overnight. Then I stuck a little metal crown on his head. I bought it at a steampunk event about ten years ago. Goodness knows why.



I stuck the feet, the hands and the club onto his body, along with a couple of spikes on his right shoulder.



Then I added his head, sculpted some ears and painted him. I happened to have an old cloak from a chaos chariot in my bits box (thanks James) and I added that to his right shoulder to give Throgg a suitably "regal" appearance. The cloak is meant to look as if it's tied to the spikes jutting out of his body.

Here he is:




And here is Throgg with his subjects!