Sunday, 18 March 2012

Aren't you a little short for a Samurai?

Well that was quick! Four hours after deciding to paint the classic Citadel orientals they were done!

These fine fellows are both elderly Games Workshop Dwarf Adventurers (still available here). I'm using them to represent the Pathfinder classes and races of a Dwarf Samurai and a Gnome Ninja. Why a Gnome? Say it out loud... "Gnome Ninja". That's why! Something I forgot to mention last time was that all of my Oriental Adventures party are being based on these cool Black Cat Bases bamboo base inserts. They're cast metal and all sorts of nifty.

So, the Samurai first. The armour is actually sculpted in as authentic a manner as you can when you are dealing with fantasy! It represents a later period suit where solid breastplates had become the norm to try to defeat the rising power of the handgun. Yep, this armour was being worn in the 1600's, while Britain was fighting the civil war with muskets and cannon the Way of Horse and Bow (Bushido) was still king in Japan. I started off the model by giving the whole thing a coat of Boltgun Metal and Black which was further drabbed down with Badab Black. I wanted the metalwork present but to retreat behind the brighter colours of the silk bindings and laquered helmet.

Speaking of bindings, the red was my usual Blood Angels method shortened to: Mechrite Red and Blood Red mix basecoat, Blood Red overbrush, Blazing Orange and Vomit Brown mix highlights. In this case every line of silk in the armour needed to be highlighted individually. For those who don't know, Samurai armour is actually thousands of thick silk cords plaited and woven around steel plates. Silk is so good at slowing cutting edges that it was in the original bulletproof vests. This armour is perfect for resisting the slashing cuts so familiar to wielders of the katana. The plates helped to stop arrows from penetrating. I glazed the red cords in a mix of Red Ink and Glaze Medium and then picked out the yellow contrast threads in Tausept Ochre, a little white added for highlights and a Gryphonne Sepia wash sealed the deal.

Most of the sculpting was nice considering this model comes from the mid-eighties but the katana wasn't quite up to spec. To make this stand out - and to make it look different to a steel katana, thus solving the sculpting problem - I decided to make a jade sword. Jade is a magical stone to the Chinese and I thought I would use it as a Ghost Touch katana (it can hit etheral creatures). This was achieved with a base coat of Vallejo Scurf Green highlighted with increasing amounts of Bleached Bone. Incidently, those are furry boots and they also are perfectly authentic!

Sadly, the ninja sculpt has not weathered the passage of time so well. The arms are awful and a real indicator of just how far GW have come over their thirty years. Most of the painting was actually correcting and minimising the effects of the wonky sculpting so don't expect miracles in the close-ups!

Painting any model like this - ninjas, imperial asassins, policemen - is an exercise in making areas of adjacent black stand out. I discussed this at length in the Hot Fuzz article so I won't go through it all again, suffice to say that used Scorched Brown for the leather breastplate and mask, Adeptus Battlegrey and Charadon Granite for the cloth and then several washes of Badab Black!

With that the Oriental Adventures adventuring party is almost complete! Just the sumo to go and I'm going to try some serious tatooing on that bad boy...


No comments:

Post a Comment