söndag 15 januari 2017

Varangian inside WIP

Not much hobbying since I finished Magnus. I have mostly been playing around wit green stuff on the internal panels of Varangian. It is work in progress and not the final detailing, but I just thought I would show what I am working on. I am adding some "chaos growths", both the standard version of ridged brass, that I have done for the knights, but I am also trying my hand on the more organic stuff seen on the inside of the warhound. I still have not really gotten it down right. I will add some more layers and see if it looks ok, otherwise I will have to strip it and restart.I have also made some progress on the base for the titan and I think it is turning out fine. I did however have a major failure with my squashed chimera, but more about that later.

måndag 9 januari 2017

Magnus The Red

Finished Magnus up this evening. Some minor touch ups left but essentially he is done, and I am pleased with the result. For the armor and tabard I tried something a bit different. I am not sure were I got it from but to my mind Zeentch is the multicolored ever changing god, and to represent this I wanted the colors in the armor and cloth the be white but with a rainbow shimmer, like pearl. This all sounds fine in theory, but how to get the effect using normal colors? This is something I have not done before but I am happy with the result. I started out with a base color, white metal, then I applied very thin watered down inks (these are the original inks from when I started painting) of purple, blue, green and  yellow in diagonal stripes across the different pieces. I did the same for the cloth but dry brushed on edge highlight colors instead. After this was applied I dry brushed layers of metal over them (not the cloth, here I used blue edge and white). In the first attempt I went a bit to far with the metal so even though you could see the color tones the were to subtle so I went back and re-enforced the colors a bit to  make them pop some more. Once I was satisfied with the base metal I applied the detailing and gold borders following my basic recipe. All the armor pieces were painted separately from the model so when I attached them I took a series of "dressing Magnus" pictures to show what the model could have looked like if only parts of the armor was attached.

fredag 6 januari 2017

Magnus the red, WIP; viewer discretion advised

This year I got "Magnus the red" as Christmas present from my wife (I have a very understanding wife). This is a stunning model and very fun to paint. As I am not doing a Tzeentgh army I felt that I could take my time and experiment a bit with the paint scheme. Since the model is so detailed, even beneath the armor I decided to paint the model in a "naked" state first and add the armor afterwards. This helps with the painting but also gives me the opportunity to take some photos  of the model painted and assembled with all the details that will later be hidden.

For the paint scheme I decided to stick mostly with the original as far as the main colors go. I painted the skin a deep red (but not the same as my blood thirstier) and dry brushed it up to yellow. This gave the model a red base but in moderate light it looks more like a red brown which is more believable as skin (even though he is a daemon). For the hands and feet I choose to bring in some more purple to represent the change from Magnus "natural" skin tone to the more Tzeentgh daemon colors. This also ties in with his mutated feet and big claw hand. I also did this for the hand holding the spear, but I am not sure that was the right decision as this hand is not mutated as the rest of the extremities.

For the wings I went with some more vibrant colors than the original, which I think ties in more with the Tzeentgh theme. Getting the blends and transitions were not easy with the dry brush (here an air brush might do a better job). These new injection molded things are very thin and hence flexible, which makes dry brushing hard as the surface constantly yields to the pressure of the brush and it becomes difficult go get an even coverage. To avoid frosting I rinsed the wings with water after each dry brushing session (usually, three to four colors in a field and max 20 min brush time). This mean that the wings had to be painted in multiple stages, i.e the four sides and two fields per side and two to three passes per field with rinsing in between.

The metal parts are given the standard treatment to make them look more weather beaten. For the runes on the blade, and also for the arm, I decided to give them a blue-ish glow and try to make it look like they were beneath the surface rather than on top of it. So after painting the runes I actually went over them again the the dry brush to add some original colors back to the edges of the cutouts.

For the base I decided to do something more advanced than I usually do, as this will be more of a display piece (as most my models really are). There is this dreadnought arm foot rest coming with the model, so I decided to add some more debris to the base, like some concrete slabs, different plastic cutoffs that might look like they came from a dreadnought and some generic marine parts like should pads, helmet and bolt gun. The base will then be finished of with sand like the rest of my bases.

All in all I am very pleased with the progress so far. Now I am looking forward to starting on the armor. I am going to go for a subtle rainbow effect in the white metal to make it shimmer a bit. I have already tried out the scheme on the metal bands on the tip of the horns and on the handle of the spear, but I hope it will also look god on the larger surfaces.

Well that is it for now.

tisdag 3 januari 2017

Varangian legs

It is a new year and new projects, or at least new parts of old projects (but there are some new ones too, but more of that later). Today I started to play around with the leg pose of the Varangian. For this titan I decided to do a more advanced base than what I normally do (the bases for the others are really not very nice). I had this vision of the titan striding up a gentle slope, and steeping on/ crushing a burned out tank. This would involve some sort of stride and an elevation between the two feet. And here I get to some ranting. I know I have said something similar about the Knight legs, which are of the same flawed design, but it bears to be repeated. Having the lower leg bend back beneath the knee is a really stupid design for a leg. It looks cool and helps bring the armor plating back inline with the leg, but from a functional point of view it is a no go. To be able to step up on to something you need to be able to bring your foot in beneath you center of gravity so that you can use the leg to elevate said center. This implies bending the lower leg backwards enough to get the foot beneath you as the thigh is lifted forward. The higher the thing is the further back the leg needs to bend to achieve this. This will of course also influences the design of the ankle and its movement (but I will not discuss that as it is not limiting in this case). I do understand that a Warlord, or a Knight for that matter is not supposed to climb mountains, but the whole reason to have a bi-pedal war machine is that it should be able to traverse uneven terrain were tracked vehicles can not go.

So looking at the warlord leg and its movement, one quickly realizes that the difference in length between the fully extended and the fully bent leg (with a line going through the foot joint and the hip joint) which is the highest obstacle the titan can step up on to, is only a few centimeters (~3 cm). So this 60 cm (give or take) model can only step over/onto 3 cm high obstacles, that is as if a human being of 175 cm could only step up on to a 9 cm high object. A warlord could barley make it of the street due to the curb if it was human sized.

Well, I am not going to redo the legs so I have to live with what I have (and perhaps make a few small changes) to get the pose needed. My idea is to have it step onto a burned out chimera at the side of a road. Due to the limitations of the legs one foot can not be more than 3 cm higher than the other, if it should look like the titan is not just resting its foot on something, which would probably not take the weight any way. This later fact is what saves me this time. As the chimera is higher than 3 cm I can not just place the foot on top of if as per previous reasoning would not be possible for the titan to do if it meant to stride over it. However, the weight of a warlord is so large that not even an armored transport would take its weight on its roof, so it needs to squashed, which then brings the wreak in under 3 cm. I am aiming for a 2-2.5 cm height just to be on the safe side. I also decided to raise the back foot to show some forward motion. I realize that this might not be the smartest thing as this foot will take most of the weight on the toes and not to foot ring. But I am sure that if the toes are glued in solidly and pinned it should be ok.

All these things makes the build of the base a bit tricky, but also give me a great opportunity to make a nice diorama that complement to model without overshadowing it.

söndag 11 december 2016

Models of the week

Yet another week has passed and I have managed to get some more models done. This time it is the last of the Skitarii vanguard, the Alpha and a Kataphron. Even though I feel like I have no time for hobby stuff I actually manage to get somethings done which is very pleasing. All in all there is not much to say about these two, the color palette is the same as on the rest of my mechanicum stuff, so it is just the same recipe. I must say that I kind of like the Katapron, initially I did not like the idea of the mechanicum using tracked vehicles, in my opinion they should all be walkers, that being said I really like the model and the level of detail. Sadly the mono-pose character of the models make painting more a bit of a bore. GW really needs to learn how to make multi pose models and still retain the level of details. I understand that it is easier to sculpt a complete model, were the parts only need to fit one pose, but for re-build-ability it is better with multi part kits with interchangeable parts.

I have also started to put some GS down on Varangian. Here the trick is to go slow and only do a few pieces at a time. Both so that you don't put your fingers on the things you just sculpted, but also to not over do it in one go. Less is more, you have to find the balance. And then off course it is always good to do multi layering with GS as it is much easier to get a good level of detail and depth that way.

söndag 4 december 2016

Progress report

This week has like many other gone to fast. I have however managed to get some things done. It was the last week with the 3D printer so I some time printing duplicates of the knights interiors, some parts for Opus Magna and a crown for Varangian. The crown then got some plastic teeth cut form plasticard. But that is not all, I also assembled the last of the Skitarii that I painted over the last couple of trips away from home, and I managed to paint two models in one session, a Custodian and a Dark Angel. So all in all a productive week, at least compared to a lot of other weeks.

söndag 27 november 2016

Varangian neck chain

Time is flying but sadly my progress with Varangian is not. It is a quest of patience as I need to let my ideas mature. This week I wanted to add a neck chain, hanging between the side armor plates below the head. I have always had the idea to add something like this, either as sculpted emblems on the armor or as a physical chain. But I was not sure exactly how to do this. So it has been bouncing around in my head for a while. Then I came up with the idea that I wanted to try to print something more complex with the 3D printer and also challenge my self a bit with what I can do in CAD. So I decided to make a chain, much like order's chains, with some massive plates held together with links, and to make it as one piece. So after a few hours in front of the PC and a few more hours in the printer I have a fully functioning chain, made all in one piece. I have also added a stand in for another idea that I have, to add a throne crown to the head. None of the pieces shown will be used but it gives a hint of what to expect. I am also thinking about skipping the neck armor and mount something else in the void. This way the head will be the center piece of a circular opening instead of being hidden beneath layers of armor. This gives it a more aggressive look in my opinion.