Back in March Axoim via the Oldhammer forum came up with the idea of running a challenge where people would paint a single model under a common theme and then the entire collection of figures would be awarded randomly to one of the participants. The theme was basically a force of multi-racial lawful warriors sworn to seek out and destroy the forces of chaos. The name for this warband, “The Dogs of Law”.
I duly volunteered to paint up a Slann for this, someone gotta represent for the frog people, can’t have the dry skins getting all the glory!
The simple approach would be to just paint up a suitable Slann model from my collection but being me I can’t just take a simple approach, ideas come and demand expression or they will just bounce around in my head irritatingly for years. The idea which appealed to me the most was one rooted firmly in proper Warhammer cannon.
The Slann of the Warhammer world are the remnants of a once mighty spacefaring species and so I wanted to create a character which gives a tip of the hat to all that jazz. There were a couple of notable influences on this, Homer Simpson and the old computer game The Sacred Armour of Antiriad.
So that leads to this chap who is based off an old Eagle Warrior from 3rd Edition Warhammer:
“Moixa’remoh was once a humble servant of the Temple of the Moon at a time when the temple was set upon by raiders, devoted to the chaos god Tzeentch. During the course of the battle a great miscast of magical energies by the chaotic sorcerers directed at the temple had the curious effect of reactivating the warp reactor of an artefact of incalculable age. As a high Slann artefact, it was much more than a mere machine. The suit was symbiotic, autonomous and intelligent and aware of the impending threat. It reached out to the closest Slann mind, the mind of the servant Moixa’remoh who was drawn to it, and into it, bonding with the spirit of the suit. A new prime operational directive was instated, enforce order, annihilate chaos…”
The colour choice for this one was to be more or less limited to olive and bone. I wanted the suit to look ancient so I used a good deal of weathering on it with the exception of the mysterious glowing green weapons, the gold visor and the edge where the visor would have been clamped shut for aeons.
Now don’t forget who’s planet this is!
17 thoughts on “The Armour of the Moon”
Phenomenal! The concept is great, the sculpting is beautifully smooth, the painting is really lovely…in fact the whole package is perfect! I love the glowing green rods and the contrast with the weathered suit. Should I be insulted by the name though?! 😉
Thanks Axiom, I thought you might appreciate a reference to the inceptor of the challenge. 🙂
That looks great Sean, I particularly like the headdress/feathers.
Thanks Cheetor. In my mind they are some kind of power generator/flight assisting things. I nearly painted them like solar panels!
Just perfect really, creativity and skill at their best here, there is not a thing I don’t adore on thie one really. From concept to model via background, everything is so nice it hurts.
I can’t help but seeing him flying to a pack of chaos worshippers burning their faces with his thrusters and hitting them like a maniac :
“THIS is because you’re mean !” BLAM ” and THIS is because I AM mean !” BLAM BLAM BLAM
I guess I hit the mark with this one then, that gives me a warm fuzzy feeling inside. Will be fun to revisit the power armoured frogmen at a later date. 🙂
Really great work. Your sculpting is so smooth it looks like this was no conversion at all, but direct from a mould. The ensemble is even topped off with lovely painting.
I second all the praise! Really smashing conversion. The sculpting is very smooth and you achieved an absolutely professional look. I also love the concept of a frog-man in a space suit. Very characterful miniature and it will be an eyecatcher on the battlefield. I especially enjoyed the last picture with the space background. Very atmopsheric!
A question related to your sculpting: How do you achieve the very smooth surfaces? Do you polish/sand them after the green stuff is dry or did you smooth them with a tool while the greenstuff is still workable? I alwasy have the problem to achieve a nice, even surface (or stuff looks “wobbly”). How do you go for preserving symmetry?
In answer to you question here is a small essay longer than the blog post. 🙂
Miliput is good stuff for sanding to make nice hard edges.
Supersculpy/Fimo polymer clay is great for initially bulking out an armature quickly so you can get on with the greenstuff fun.
I never ever sand greenstuff as it tends to just rough up the surface, if I ever have to make any modifications to it I use a really sharp scalpel to slice off the offending parts.
In order to achieve a nice smooth even surface I tend to work up in a couple of layers. In this case I took an existing miniature and shaved some of the surface layer off it to make a quick armature. I then applied a fairly thin layer of greenstuff on the armour areas, not being too careful about surface smoothness at this stage as once it was dry I could slice off any bits that were too far from the silhouette I wanted. This gives me a base layer in the right shape to build upon.
Next I typically frame the armour parts with long thin pieces of greenstuff. For example when I was working on a thigh plate I put a ring of greenstuff on the top near the crotch and a ring on the bottom near the knee. This I blend in with the base layer so that it sticks on firmly. When this has dried fully it will act as a frame for any greenstuff which I layer on between the two rings which will provide some support the during the smoothing process.
A key tool that I use is the softest grade of size 6 clay shaper, the one in the middle of this image which is the flat chisel shaped one:
It’s a bit counter intuitive using such a big shaper on a small model (I only have one as it was the only one available in a hobby store when I bought my first shaper) but they are really good for working an area evenly, I really must buy some more big ones!
In fact I always try to work with the shapers as much as possible only using the dental tools or scalpel where a shaper will not achieve the desired effect, this tends to make everything I do on the smooth side. A hard size 0 chisel shaper is my most commonly used tool, with the soft size 6 one probably in close second place in terms of time in my hand.
So pretty much, go slowly and use thin layers and the big soft shaper keeping an eye on the symmetry as you go and you should be able to get a very smooth finish (using plenty of your spittle as you go, I hate using greasy nivea hand cream as it stops subsequent layers of greenstuff from adhering without removal first).
The cure time is not really a factor I have found – unless it has dried enough to get too tacky to stay in the place it is pushed to. You should be able to get a smooth effect with freshly mixed greenstuff.
In summary, any rough looking work can be easily gotten smooth with a very thin layer of fresh greenstuff blended onto the surface once you are happy with the shape and the symmetry. Making a frame for the area you are working will both act as a template for positioning new layers and provide support at either end when you are smoothing largish amounts of greenstuff.
I am not sure if this is the best way to work, it’s just the way I have evolved my style in a trial and error way, ask me in 6 months and I might have changed this process :), that’s one of the things I love about sculpting, you never really stop learning as Kevin Adams told me when I had the chance to chat with him at BOYL this year.
Hopefully my explanation helps you to get some additional insight, talk and text is often a poor medium for explaining the 4 dimensional.
So absolutely genius! I’m amazed with that! Just the very concept itself is great, but the way you achieved the final result… Oh, wow, that’s a thing!
Thanks Suber, happy you like him. 🙂
He’s just delightful. Easily my favourite of your sculpts so far. Cracking paint job too.
Cheers Dave. Wait till ye see the sculpt I do for your chaps before you pick a favourite :).
Oh, I’m banking on that being my new most favourite sculpt. 😉
Masterpiece. I use to write a lot but you happen to render me speechless.
May the RT be with you.
Thanks Javi. The RTness has never left me yet! 🙂