Monday, 26 August 2013

Storm...thing

Let's go for a different project. This is an ongoing commission for a friend. In this current edition of WH40K it looks like it's mandatory (among other things) having flying vehicles (not really sure as I haven't even read 6th Ed rules, but that's the way it looks like from the outside). For Space Marines armies that means Stormravens, Stormtalons and Stormwhateverthenamesare. I must say I'm not quite fond of them, I believe that GW models look too much like a toy. I mean, I don't mind the 'flying brick' concept, as all Space Marines vehicles have always been basically armoured bricks, but these ones particularly seem clumsy to me; I think they need a more stylised shape and different fixes here and there to make them look as sci-fi aircrafts frow GW and not from Fisher-Price.

This friend, fortunately, didn't want just the very model, but something slightly different. He begun to work on it by himself, but he recently moved abroad and had to drop off all his projects. So I inherited this Stormwhatever and had the mission to finish it. My job was easy as he had already done almost everything. He had combined a Stormraven kit and a Rhino one, and had the main hull and the beginning of a turret.

So I took it from that point and gave the general shape to it, with the upper body and the tail. I used some putty to fill the gaps and set a big cannon (using a pen).

Technical specifications have been totally approved
I tried to make it look like a small Thundehawk, the Space Marines iconic flying transport. It stills look chubby and a flying brick, but I rather prefer this one than the official models.

From this point, the rest is just a matter of adding details
I used pieces from here and there, from old models and so. Could be difficult to track some of them to their origins...

Hi-tech thrusters. Both Boeing and Airbus would kill for those
I also changed my mind about the gunner. I was not setting him exposed and I found it more logical having a full closed canopy.

Besides (and more important), it's easier to paint!
Some details (and grey priming) later, this is how it looks like:

Almost like it's brand new
Now I have to paint it! But that will be in some time, as I still have lots of pending work before. I'm switching a little from GW and moving into... Well, I'll let you discover next day ;)
To the brushes!

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Chaos cult of Bane

Well, kinda of that :P.

Some time ago I painted this Knightmodels Batman for a friend:

Criminals are a superstitious cowardly lot

Why is this relevant? Let me explain: then he purchased two WH40K 'Dark Vengeance' boxes and asked me to paint the Chaos cultists. So, what would I do to make a 'different' army? (you know, I'm terrified to do the same thing that everyone does). The first idea that came up was making the leader as Bane in the 'Dark Knight Rises' movie, given that the coat and mask could be easily converted. But of course that was not enough! We toyed with the idea of a complete band of thugs with breathers; not just hired muscle by the boss, but a real Cult of Bane. So they could be used in a number of environments, just like the Batman game by Knightmodels, any post-apoc game or even WH40K.

I got different human heads (just bare heads, from Hasslefree and MaxMini) and begun to cut and replace the original ones from the models for these new acquisitions. After that, it all was green stuff for the breathers and some exchange of arms and weapons in order to avoid repetition. Here you have the results:
  
You think darkness green stuff is your ally, but you merely adopted it. I was born in it, molded by it...
Subtle changes in heads and weapons
Wannabe Banes
Darth Vader fans, their breath sounds cool
They look like the ones above but believe me, there are not two identical guys here
At this point of sculpting breathers, you begin to bend the limits of sanity
The final pic. 40 different guys on the whole. You can count all of them
  
I wish I could claim the idea of the chainsaw guy. I saw it on the internet and looked cool to me. Sorry, but I don't remember the blog (If by any chance you happen to read me, just tell me so I can credit you!)

The colour palette was deliberately limited. Whatever the game they are being used for, they shouldn't wear clean clothes or be dressed in bright new colours. So browns/greys should fit any post-apoc/WH40K environments, and still be suitable for Gotham City. As most of the guys are wearing military uniforms (I guess this was some kind of Imperial Guard unit which turned into Chaos), I thought of painting them in the same colours, but that was not going to work, as they looked just too similar, kind of a clone army. So I tried to give a slight variety on the clothes and skins, but still with just a few colours.

So that's it! They are now ready to spread anarchy in Gotham City, salvage and survive in the aftermath of a nuclear war or fight for the dark gods in the far future!

Monday, 19 August 2013

Building GW Chapel: The final result (Pt. 4)

Mission accomplished. I got a finished scenery element. Let's take the work from where we left it the other day.
First of all, I had to cut the plastic in order to avoid the so obvious quadrangular shape. Then I used cheap and easy papier-mâché technique to make it look more like a hill. These were the basics:

It doesn't look too impressive, I know. Give some time
I added the chapel floor and access stairs to the building. Once I got all this, I went for a more realistic approach. Using DAS plaster I got this:

Now it looks like buried in snow
Winter is coming
The best thing about working in summer is that you can leave anything on the window and it dries in minutes. It has really saved me a lot of time.
The final steps were adding sand, flock and a tree, just to fill an awful empty space.

Spring!
 

The inside definitely looks this way:



Though I'm pleased with the result, I think I could add some more details. What would you think about some ivy on the walls? Maybe some more vegetation all over the hill? If I were for any or those I would need some tutorials, but I find the idea appealing...

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Building GW Chapel: Conventional outside. Or not (Pt. 3)

Not many pics today, as I'm afraid I made a mistake: I just went on the rush and totally forgot taking photos of the progress :(.

I'll try to tell you in a few words: The card in the inner walls made it slightly difficult for the kit pieces to totally fit, so I needed some green stuff on the outside corners to make the cornerstones look good. No big deal, just small details. I also had to re-arrange the card on the door wall to let the roof fit properly. Still working on the skull covering issue, I'm not satisfied with my expriments.

Well, after those details I just painted the chapel. Though the fantasy spirits is obvious, I tried not to overdo it. I didn't use the statues (as in fact I'm using one of them for the inside) nor other Warhammer specific elements. I tried it to look kind of 'natural' in colours and tones.

Looks fine, but dull. I feel it lacks something
That's the problem, it looks nothing more than 'correct' to me. This is not the kind of things I'm aiming to. So I think I should try something for the base (remember, it still doesn't have a floor). Not just a simple base, a work-to-go. A new idea has just popped up.

Yeah, take it to the oven. A great idea
Ehrm... No. Not that.

A tupperhill!
Well, it looks better in my mind. Don't worry, I'm working on it. Next step is avoiding the regular edges and transforming it into a more organic shape. Hopefully I'll have it totally finished for next post!

Monday, 12 August 2013

Building GW Chapel: Beauty is in the inside (Pt. 2)

At some point I decided this was going to be a good idea. Don't know when it was. Well, too late for regretting :P.

This is what I got:

Unacceptable lack of skulls
No joking, having those skulls on the outside walls made me think about the general lookings of the piece. I thought it was appropiate to keep the gloomy aspect. No peaceful, colourful icons would fit in here. That's why I chose dark medieval looking frescos, going for the apocalyptic way. I hope it doesn't look too macabre, that's not my intention, but I felt this was the most correct way to approach the project.

No sheperds of Arcadia, I'm afraid
Dark images, fire, destruction... I have kinda mixed feelings about that. Though being 'correct' in this 'medieval fantasy with skulls' context, I think they look too dingy on the whole.

I should have tried blue skies
I still have to work on the finishing, of course, but this will be more or less the preliminary aspect of it. When you assemble the walls, the chapel looks like this:

I believe the statue concept suits well the chapel

Maybe too  pretentious clock, but it fills that space and I don't have to paint another fresco
So this is it so far. Next step will be managing the inner finishings, glueing the walls and painting the outside. I'll let you know how this evolves!

Thursday, 8 August 2013

Building GW Chapel: Beauty is in the inside (Pt. 1)

You saw lots of unfinished scenery in last week's battle report. It's time to solve that. Let's begin with the tiny building, the ubiquitous GW Chapel.
GW's Fantasy scenery has become really popular, some of their kits being among the most used in all kind of wargames, from fantasy environments to medieval or even Victorian/VSF/Gothic games. High quality and detailed kit, I must say, it's a very good choice for scenery.

However, that's exactly what moves me to do something... different. I just don't want to have the same piece of scenery that everyone has. At least not the very same one. But... how to make the difference? I mean, in a cheap and easy way, something that anybody with my lack of skills could reasonably achieve. Hmm... Then I found the solution. As the title says, beauty is in the inside :P.


You see where am I heading this nonsense?
That's it, I thought it would be fun trying to make something with the inner part of the kit. Unfortunately it's too small for real game action, but it can be used as part of an scenario (the character has to spend 1d3 turns in the inside looking for the secret escape/treasure/whatever... Don't know, this kind of stuff). As you can see, no complication on my part, just plain card and let's see where this leads.


No work on the outside
I thought of doing something with all those skulls. Maybe opening a window instead of them... something. But that would be on the 'complexity' side I was trying to avoid in this project, so I finally just left them. You know, it's not GW if it doesn't have skulls...

Some more additional work in the inside:


Problems with the finishing touches, but I'll be solving that
So my idea is having an altar -or more likely a statue (from the same kit) at the end of the chapel and some frescos on the side walls. I'll be showing you my progress on this over the next few days!

Monday, 5 August 2013

Dark Future: last of the V8's interceptors

After playing some Dark Future scenarios, Keyan Sark made me a proposal I simply couldn't refuse, converting a car to make the last of the V8's Interceptors.
No bells ringing? Then, you are too young, I'm afraid. That's the car from the first Mad Max movie, the one Mel Gibson uses for his revenge (and uses again in Mad Max 2). Being the whole game a tribute to the movies, having this car looked not only a good idea, but even the logical step to take!

Well, no more disgressions. Keyan provided me the 'raw material', this 1/64 '73 Ford Falcon XB GT (the original car used in the movies) from Hot Wheels:

Hmm there's some work to do here
The first step was taking it to pieces. That will allow painting it without any risk for the windshield as well as -even more important- painting that green upholstery in more natural colours:

I forgot the windshield piece for this photo
These Hot Wheels cars arte insanely well built, it was a challenge taking the pieces apart and not destroying the whole plastic structure in the process.

After some green stuff work, the front part looked like that:


Not exactly industrial, but it works
 Don't let the pic mislead you, I sweated to get that motor piece. Not totally satisfied with the result, but that's all I can achieve, I'm afraid.
I used an old toy scuba tank from my childhood that I had strangely kept over the years. Man, this car is really handcraft made!

Well, this begins to look what we were aiming for
I could have done some additional work on the exhausts and the headlights, but that would bring some more difficulties when painting the model, something Keyan is doing himself, so we agreed to let it be just this way.


Close enough
I'm eager to see the final result when he paints the model. Hope it is anytime soon!