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Skitarii WIP - Progress on Cawl: getting close


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Hey all! I decided to move my WIP stuff to the main folder instead of posting in the Ad Mech forum to get a little more feedback. I'll post a bunch of pics here to get started and then show you what I'm working on now. Let me know what you think. 


First up, a couple test models to show you the scheme I'm using for my home-brew forgeworld, Kal'koplos. 


A Skitarii Vanguard: 



And an Infiltrator:



Almost all the metals are either brass or copper, with just very sparing use of silver metals for things like ribbed cables. I wanted the brass to be very worn (using a simplified recipe from my Queen Bee knight) but the copper to be 'new penny' shiny. The blue is a very muted, dusty blue, and the tan and gray are close to neutral so they don't muddy up the palette too much. There's a lot going on with these models, so I tried to use a palette that had a lot of variation without looking wild or loud. 


I think these two models show one of the other odd things about Adeptus Mechanicus models: the ratios are very different from one unit type to the next. The Onager will be VERY heavy on the blue, whilst the Sicarians have very little, for instance. It's tough to come up with a scheme that balances everything out, but I'm pleased with this scheme so far. I did a serious of mockups in Photoshop to test various units. You can always click on my blog link in my signature if you want to read some older posts about coming up with this stuff. 


Anyway, I'll do a separate post with the 2 Vanguard squads I'm working on now. 

Edited by JeffTibbetts
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And here is my batch-painting method for the Vanguard. Man, they are fiddly models. Very cool, but also difficult to paint. 





I kept the models in egg crates for most of the process, since you need to keep track of paired legs and torsos, plus matching arms. I'm used to space marines which can be mixed and matched with little fuss, so this was all new to me. Plus, marines can be sprayed all one color for the most part, and these guys and gals most assuredly cannot. 


Eventually, once I was able to glue the legs to torsos and torsos to heads and backpacks I was able to ditch the egg crate, which sped things up. 





I gave one squad two Arc Rifles and the other two Plasma Culverins. I armed the Alphas using the rule of cool, so they're probably not well optimized. I tried to get everything up to base coats and shade as much as possible at once. I left the copper til later to keep it as clean as possible. 





And here they're getting pretty dang close. Still a lot to do but I'd be happy putting them on the table like this if I had to. 





The two Alphas are cool, IMO


I also assembled some Ruststalkers a little while ago because they're just so dang cool. I really like these models. I swapped the legs on the Princeps here to help differentiate from the Infiltrators a bit. I later filled in the gap with a bit of putty. I may yet go in and replace his sword with a second razor, even though both are just for looks and won't confer an extra attack at all. 



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Thanks! I didn't realize that about the basing. I'd have to look that up somewhere. Same bases I've been using on my marines for ages, intended to look like an ash wasteland or burned village. 


EDIT: I found a couple images and you're quite right! Wonder if they use similar techniques and stuff. 

Edited by JeffTibbetts
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  • 2 weeks later...

I couldn't help myself. I broke down and split a box of the Triumvirate with a couple buddies so I could get my mechadendrites on Belisarius Cawl. I don't regret it.


I made a pretty tough choice and decided to paint him in his actual Mars colors instead of my own forge world. I realized at some point this is the first time I can ever remember using a named character in a game. I've never even used a counts-as named character before in my 28 years of playing Warhams. So, I figured this is the real Cawl, and if I field him with my Skitarii it's because he's working with them. Maybe some day I'll have a go at converting my very own Archmagos, but for now I just love this model so much I wanted to keep him pure.


Since I'm using an official paint job, I figured I may as well use Duncan Rhodes' paint job so I'm using all his paint recipes and basically following the video, but I'll do a few things to get it closer to the box art since he cuts corners here and there. For instance, his skin was Rakarth Flesh, Athonian Camoshade and then Pallid Wych Flesh. I copied that, then added another highlight of white scar, then added red glazes around the areas the tubes are puncturing his skin, blue glaze for veins, and then I used some deep blues and purple around his sunken eye. I also added liver spots with Agrax Earthshade. Off to a good start!
Here's a very early WIP sneak peek of his face and arm. 
I think the purple is a bit too noticeable in photos. It looks fine on the tabletop, but I might come in with a Pallid Wych Flesh highlight to tone it down a touch. 
And here's the arm. 
So yes, every little flow pops out when you're this close, but I'd say from even a moderate distance it looks pretty convincing as very old man flesh. 
Thoughts? Anything you think I should tweak before I put his hood on? It'll be almost impossible to mess with after that. 
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Been hammering away on Bellysaurus Carl. It may not look like a lot of progress, but with so much detail everywhere you look, every little bit counts. The yellow-black striping is really kicking my butt. I cannot get it uniform but I'm mostly okay with it at this point. It looks worse in pics. I'd say from tabletop it looks great. I think I'm done highlighting the red robes. The contrast looks pretty good to me. 


The biggest update is that I mounted it on a bottle so I can finally paint the weapons. I had been using those to hold the model (which is why his cogmohawk is also unfinished) but now I can finally paint them. The Arc Scourge is pretty much finished except highlighting the silver metal and brass (I am using both brass and gold on this model). I really love the way the deep red turned out. Wish the model had more of this color on it, actually. The only other place it appears is the little spider-servitor thing. 




The Solar Atomizer is just base coated and shaded for the most part, but it does add a lot towards looking finished. 




I tried to paint the little screen on his fold-out laptop, but frankly I wasn't sure what to do with it. I tried to zoom in on the pics from the website but there's no real clear shot of it. I did paint it blue, even though Duncan Rhodes went for a simple green gem effect on his. It was clearly blue on the 'Eavy Metal version so I'm sticking with that. 




And finally I started on his cog. It's a bit sloppy but I'm just getting started.




That's all for now. This model is still blowing my mind. 

Edited by JeffTibbetts
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A lot of work on the details, even if it looks almost the same as last time around. Getting very close to done on the torso. 










I highlighted the black, picked out the rivets with silver, added a line highlight on the yellow and black stripes, added a layer of stipled Ironbreaker on the flat metal armor plates, painted the base and shade on the cogmohawk, and picked out a few details like the presser gage on his generator. 


I still need to finish the blue lenses and lighning globe thing, but I'm waiting on a pot of Baharroth Blue from my LGS. It's an Edge paint so they don't stock it. I still need to finish up the silver metals and decide if I want to add any scratches or battle damage. Then onto the axe and leg sections! Woot! 

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Thanks, man! He's a lot of work, but a lot of FUN work. I haven't gotten remotely bored with him. Been painting a lot of troops lately so it's nice to break it up a bit. Also, his colors are very novel compared to both my blue/brass Skitarii and my green marines. It's very refreshing. 

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  • 1 month later...

I put Cawl on hold briefly while I did a commission piece for a buddy since I was waiting on some Baharroth Blue paint. I got the paint, but I also got two boxes of E-Priests fairly cheap because I love the models, they go very well with my forge world fluff, and I just wanted to get 'one of everything' going on. You know how it is. While I love the models, there was something that bugged me for a long time. We've talked about it on the Ad Mech forums for a while, but there are some amongst us that don't care for the buff, bodybuilder look of the big pecs and popping muscles. It was Aaron Dembski-Bowden that put it into words so well (surprise surprise) when he mentioned that the Ad Mech is inherently unhealthy, not good for the flesh and relatively unconcerned with it. It seems odd that these Electro Priests would be sort of showing off these huge muscles. The flip side is that, of course, they could well be vat-grown flush augmetics or even gene-bulked. That's fine, but I also like what Jes Goodwin said about the Ad Mech: They're the undead of 40K, not Necrons. 


With that very much in mind I've always wanted to do a conversion with the models to make them look far more emaciated and anemic. To me, the idea is the electoos are actually the motive force (see what I did there) behind their strength and endurance, and would act as both the Voltagheist field conductor and also electric muscle motivator. So basically they can fight far harder as their muscles are pushed and prodded, flooded with unnatural vigor even though their bodies are contemptibly atrophied. I didn't want to go as far as Christian Bale in the Machinist, but maybe closer to that than The Rock. 




You can see his musculature, for sure, but that unhealthy look was pretty close to what I had in mind. 


I tried my hand at sculpting the first one with Pro Create (hence the gray color) and it's pretty close to what I was looking for. This picture sucks, but that's okay because I'll be redoing some of it. I did screw up the ribs, so for sure I'll be going in and carving that out and redoing the sides. I think the pecs and abs look okay. 




Thoughts? I think I may end up casting the upper torsos so I don't have to do this more than 5 times. I'm not the best sculptor, but I think they'll look much closer to what I was thinking once I do the arms and get some paint on them. If anything I think they're still too wide in the abdomen. I started by just carving the plastic chest and abdomen down, but I don't think I went far enough. I also need to fix the ribs, as mentioned. 


As for the electoos, I think I'll make some custom decals and print them out, then maybe paint some copper along them. I've always felt they should be flat, and more tattoo-like than the official models. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Have a couple pretty small updates, but I AM working so I want to make sure it's all documented. 


First up, I've been adding the custom decals to my Skitarii now that their robes are done. Lots left to do on them, but I am pleased with the way these are turning out. I have another squad as well, but the picture wasn't very good. It's a bit hard to see with the gloss, but what I like is that the ink isn't well bound to the backing, so there's some very natural-looking degradation on some the custom ones. The alpha's is very crisp and clean, so I'll need to go in and mess with it. It looks to me like an old screen-printed design on well-worn fabric, which is probably pretty close to what it would be IRL. Unfortunately the gloss I used to bind them (I think it was Krylon Crystal Clear gloss) is super thick, and not susceptible to the charms of Microsol, so there will always be a visible edge and I'm not happy about that at all. I need to look into some other sprays to use. Any suggestions? 




My wife is out of town, so I've decided this is the week I will finish Belisarius Cawl once and for all. To that end, I worked on the blue lenses and gubbins, going for a couple different effects. Have a look and I'll explain a bit. 




Here's the current state of the entire model. I did start his base but there's not much to look at. The torso and lower body are basically done I think. Some minor touch-ups aside. The axe arm stills needs a little work but most of the base is down. I haven't blacked the handle because I'm using that to hold it right now. The gold and brass have been washed down but they need highlights, the cream robe needs highlighting, as does the black casing and cabling. I still need to finish the cogs as well. It shouldn't take long but there's lot of fiddly little bits to go. 




Here you can see both the lens on the skull and the little 'lightning in a bottle' bits on his back. I went for smooth lenses, but I added some sort of stipling on the canisters to give the hint of some kind of coruscating energies trapped in them. Like little motes flickering in and out. Hopefully people don't just think it looks sloppy, because surely I won't explain this to everyone who sees the model. 




I wanted the jar on his back to look like a bit like a novelty plasma ball. I'm not totally convinced it worked, but it's kind of a neat effect anyway.




Same basic idea for this little spider thing. The effect looked a bit more vibrant before I dropped a blue glaze on it, but that improved the intensity of the color which was more important anyway. 


At this point I should be able to finish the base and start putting him together! I'll leave his right arm off for now, but I think the rest is pretty close. 

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  • 1 year later...

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