Protectorate of Menoth

All posts tagged Protectorate of Menoth

This is another instance of “You just don’t say no”. This model’s better than once in a lifetime, it’s one-of-a-kind.

This model was thought up and constructed by the client and it’s made of parts from many different Protectorate kits as well as an Extreme Juggernaut, which lends lots of bits to the underlying structure. Quite a few parts are also custom made from plasticard and there’s loads of greenstuff. Additionally, most of the structure of the legs is made from brass tubing.

The client wanted the majority of the model to be an off-white color, pulling inspiration from the stone of the St. Peter’s Basilica. Dark blue was to be the secondary color on all of the trim, and lots of bronze for the Menofixes and other metals as an accent. Overall this is fairly regal palette, which is very fitting for Protectorate.

I started with the legs as a test bed for the colors I wanted to use for the model. After priming white, I picked out the shadows in P3 Bastion Grey (a brown-ish grey). Then, an even coat of P3 Menoth White Base was laid over most of the model, leaving the Bastion Grey in the darkest spots on the bottom. Then, P3 Menoth White Highlight was airbrushed in as the final highlight on the top bits.

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So, I’m not going to make the Khador deadline I had set for Templecon 2014.  I think it was a relatively unrealistic to begin with, and I’m currently focused on the Titan’s Exchange models, which are more important.  At this point, I’ve accepted the fact that whatever I get done for my Khador before Templecon is just a bonus.  The Exchange models should be done by the end of the week, so If I can, I’m going to try and finish off the Winterguard unit for the full deathstar.  We’ll see what happens.

Anyway, as I work on finishing up these exchange models and aiming for the last 6 models I need for the full deathstar, I want to pick your collective brains over what I’ll be working on after Templecon.

templecon_logo

Our journeyman league is kicking off early this year, so I need to figure out just what I’m going to do. We’re running it a little differently than usual.  Each player pledges a 50-pt army and paints that to completion, rather than painting as much as possible and feeling completely swamped.

I’ve been collecting ideas for armies for a while now, and I’m looking at this opportunity as a chance to finally take one of these and see them through to completion.  The problem is, there are so many great ones to pick from!

Baldur1, Rock of Orboros Tier 4

72045_WoldGuardian_WEBBaldur the Stonecleaver (*6pts)
* Woldwatcher (5pts)
* Woldwatcher (5pts)
* Megalith (10pts)
* Woldguardian (8pts)
* Woldwarden (8pts)
Sentry Stone (Leader and 3 Manikins) (3pts)
Sentry Stone (Leader and 3 Manikins) (3pts)
Shifting Stones (2pts)
Shifting Stones (2pts)
Stoneward and 5 Woldstalkers (5pts)
Stoneward and 5 Woldstalkers (5pts)

This list has been a long time coming.  I already own all of it, most was a gift to myself after all the work I put into the first NOVA Open.  It’s a fun, tanky list that puts the opponent between a rock and a hard place.  It’s also a paint scheme that can be done with an airbrush for the most part, but has lots of nutty details that could be a pain under such a tight time schedule.

Kreoss Pop ‘n’ Drop

32026_DelivererSunburstCrew_WEBHigh Exemplar Kreoss (*5pts)
* Redeemer (6pts)
* Fire of Salvation (9pts)
* Reckoner (8pts)
* Vanquisher (8pts)
* Hierophant (2pts)
Choir of Menoth (Leader and 5 Grunts) (3pts)
Deliverer Sunburst Crew (Leader and 2 Grunts) (3pts)
Exemplar Errants (Leader and 9 Grunts) (8pts)
* Exemplar Errant Officer & Standard Bearer (2pts)
Paladin of the Order of the Wall (2pts)
The Covenant of Menoth (2pts)
Vassal of Menoth (2pts)

This list is another super fun list, it’s all about capitalizing on Kreoss’ feat.  There’s a ton of ranged firepower, all the classic Protectorate pieces, and all the stuff I really want to paint.  Like the Paladin.  Don’t judge me.  I’m also interested in seeing the look on people’s faces when the Sunburst Crew hits the table.

Nemo3’s Lightning Battery

31093_Nemo_FinchWEBArtificer General Nemo (*3pts)
* Storm Chaser Adept Caitlin Finch
* Lancer (6pts)
* Sentinel (4pts)
* Stormclad (10pts)
Storm Strider (9pts)
Silver Line Stormguard (Leader and 9 Grunts) (9pts)
Stormblade Infantry (Leader and 5 Grunts) (5pts)
* Stormblade Infantry Officer & Standard (3pts)
* 3 Stormblade Infantry Storm Gunner (3pts)
Stormblade Captain (2pts)
Stormblade Captain (2pts)

This list is pure zappy goodness.  I’ll finally get to paint my Stormclad conversion, along with nearly every Storm Knight model I own.  That’s a lot of work, but there it is.  I think this list would be incredibly fun to play, but I am not looking forward to painting it.

Vayl2, Machinations of Shadow Tier 4

73008_CarniveanClassic_WEBVayl, Consul of Everblight (*6pts)
* Harrier (2pts)
* Shredder (2pts)
* Angelius (8pts)
* Angelius (8pts)
* Carnivean (10pts)
* Ravagore (9pts)
Blackfrost Shard (5pts)
Blighted Nyss Legionnaires (Leader and 9 Grunts) (6pts)
Spawning Vessel (Leader and 5 Grunts) (3pts)
Blighted Nyss Shepherd (1pts)
Succubus (2pts)

Vayl2 is the new hotness, and her theme list combines everything I love about this game: big nasty beasts and lots of spell-slingin’.  I also love a good tar-pit, and the Legionnaires and Spawning Vessel do that in spades.  The best part about this list is that I get to revisit the Aquablight theme.

Charge of the Battlemittens!

35012_HouseShyeelBattleMages_WEBAdeptis Rahn Shyeel (*6pts)
* Discordia (10pts)
* Phoenix (10pts)
* Phoenix (10pts)
House Shyeel Battle Mages (5pts)
House Shyeel Battle Mages (5pts)
Houseguard Halberdiers (Full Unit) (7pts)
* Halberdiers Officer & Standard (2pts)
Arcanist (0pts)
Arcanist (1pts)
House Shyeel Magister (2pts)
House Shyeel Magister (2pts)
House Shyeel Magister (2pts)

This is one I’ve had on the shelf for a long time.  I’ve had plans to do this in a TRON style theme, for a long time, including potential scratch-built bikes for Destor Thanes.  This is an extension of the 35pt version which drops a Phoenix and a unit of Mittens.  I could put in three Mittens units for four total and hit T4, but that’s a lot of Mittens that’ll probably never see the table top afterwards.

Harkevich’s Assault & Battery

33036_BehemothWEB (1)Kommander Harkevich, the Iron Wolf (*5pts)
* Behemoth (13pts)
* Black Ivan (10pts)
* Destroyer (9pts)
* War dog (1pts)
Greylord Outriders (Full Unit) (9pts)
Winter Guard Infantry (Full Unit) (6pts)
* WGI Officer & Standard (2pts)
* 3 Rocketeers (3pts)
Kovnik Jozef Grigorovich (2pts)

This would utilize a few models I already have painted, but would let me build my Extremoth.  All the parts are here, I just haven’t had a good enough excuse to build it and see it through.  One of the big advantages to this list is that there would be very few models to paint, albeit Large based ones.

So, which should it be?

There’s a Poll up top, on the left hand side.  Please vote!

If you have comments about the lists, leave them below!

Welcome to the Thursday edition of TtT.

Today, I’m going to go over my process for sculpting the ribbons onto the arms of the Cinerator/Bastions.  I use a size 0, tapered point color shaper for smoothing the greenstuff, a hard tool for major shaping, and a knife for cutting away excess putty.

Tools of the trade

Each model has a big hole in the arm where the peg on the shield goes.  This needs to be trimmed a bit.  The extra material represents the bindings holding the shield onto the arm.  Since the shield is gone now, that stuff needs to go, and the hole needs to be filled in.  Also, don’t forget to remove the bits of handle on the top and bottom of the fist.

Trimmed & filled.

I rolled up a bunch of greenstuff, and rolled it into a ball, which I then rolled into an ice cream cone.

Cone of greenstuff

The cone gets stuck onto the model…

Blob of Greenstuff

I then put a bit of chapstick onto the metal tool, and cut the blob roughly in half, vertically.

Cut into two ribbons

Then, each of the two pieces got flattened a bit.

Wedges

Once this is done, I shoved the ribbon on our left (the model’s right) towards the middle of the model, and flattened the other one out into a general shape.  Then, using the color shaper, the putty  was smoothed a shaped more.

Smoothed out ribbon

I use the shaper to smooth the putty by drawing it along the greenstuff.  Since the silicone tip is pliable, you can be very gentle, and push the putty around subtly.

Rinse, repeat for the second ribbon.

Repeat for the second ribbon

Then, I added some motion by tweaking the tips of the squared off ends, and shifting the bottoms a bit to one side.  When considering the look for the motion in the ribbons, look for source photos, or grab a necktie and swing it around.  You’ll notice the bottom trails the top, and is often pointing the direction opposite the movement.

Add some motion

To show a change in movement, have the top and bottom heading in the same direction, with the middle trying to catch up. Take the entire pose into account – I often have to get up out of my chair and stage myself into the model’s pose to see what sort of motion it may be in the middle of.

In this case, I figured the arm was moving upwards, and across the body (likely as the other arm thrusts forward), so I trailed the ribbons towards the outside of the body.

Another angle, showing the motion in the ribbons

The last bit for this is the knot at the top of the ribbon, where everything gets tied together.  I start with a super small ball, and squish it flat.  Then, I square up the sides, and put it ono the top of the ribbon.

The knot on top

And that’s it!  I used the same techniques on the last two models, and I’ll likely re-do the one that I did on the first model, since it no longer matches these new ribbons (which have much more depth).

Finished unit

I added a special ribbon to the unit leader’s weapon, and when painted, will really highlight his halberd.

Leader’s special ribbon

Last week, I covered my Cinerator into Bastion conversion.  A few questions / requests were brought up – namely if a 2-handed model was possible, and a more in-depth look at sculpting the ribbons.

Today, I’ll cover the 2-handed pose I was able to make, and Thursday, I’ll have more on the sculpting.

I started with the usual collection of bits:

Parts!

This is trooper #3, the one looking to his left.  I chose this pose because the left arm is posed across the front of the model’s body, which meant I only needed to re-position one arm, rather than both.

The right am got cut off where it joined the bulb on the shoulder, and would later get pinned back on.  For now, though, here’s a look at where the cuts were made in the upper half of the  pole arm.  I cut right at the transition from the knurling to the bare shaft, and then cut about half the bare part off, leaving about a hand’s width behind:

The right arm should be flipped over, it’ll be palm up in the final pose.

Holes got drilled through each fist as well as into each part of the weapon.  Pins were glued into each end of the middle part, and then the arms were fit over.

Sub Assembly

At this point, I pinned the re-posed arm into place, roughly where I thought it should be.  Then, I took the torso, arms and the middle pieces over to the stove.  I used some 160-degree water to loosen up the plastic arms, and then fit them onto the body.

That required the left arm to be bent upwards a bit, and the right arm was bent sharply upwards and inwards.  Leaving the hand joints and shoulder joints un-glued was critical.  I had to soak the model three more times to tweak the pose so that the hands and pins lined up enough to look straight.

As you can see, it’s not quite straight – the shaft doesn’t line up all that great, and it’s worse from the top.  If you look, you can see that the hands don’t squarely grip the shaft.  However, I drilled the holes through the hands squarely.  If I draw a line on the above photo, you can see that the holes should have been drilled at an angle.

How the weapon ‘should’ line up.

Anyway, that’s how I was able to get a 2-handed pose out of one of the models.  I ink that another could be done with the other pose, but the distance between the hands is significantly longer.  If you were doing shaft replacements, and just using the heads and counterweights, then it could be done.

Anyway, here’s a shot of the whole unit:

Bam! Bastions.

I also kept going with the shields glued on their backs, and it even works with the leader’s add-on tabard thing:

Gotta use the shields!

Attack, that-a-way!

Well, I think my experiment with speedpainting has been successful.  I’ve finished the models I set out to do, and I did them in the time I wanted to.  I successfully pushed myself to be as efficient as possible, despite my wants to fix errors as soon as they happened.

Uh, I think we need some risers, the tall guys in back still can’t see.

I definitely think I had to sacrifice a bit on quality – given the choice I may go fix a few panels I’m not happy with, but I will say that I’m rather proud to have finished a battlebox + a heavy in two weeks.

So, now that it’s all over, what else have I learned?

Paint dark colors first.

Even if they’re “outside” lighter colors.  This goes against the whole “work from the inside out” idea, but if the panels aren’t too far apart in depth, do the darker panels first.  I started with the whites, and I had a horrible time cleaning up when I got black or red on them.  I would have been far better off painting the black highlights, then the red bits, and then following up with the whites.  or at least waiting to blend the whites until after I had worked on the rest of the model.

It would have been easy to fix the mistakes on the whites if they were only a basecoat.  As it was, they were already blended, and repairing a mistake in the middle of a blend… is painful.

Much better!

Pick out your scheme ahead of time.

I had done a test model before I got started, so I knew roughly where I wanted the colors to go, but I hadn’t really thought about the color distribution before I translated that scheme from a Temple Flameguardsman to one of the ‘jacks.

As is, there isn’t enough black on the light ‘jacks – to me they have a bit too much color on them compared to the other three models.  I think it turned out OK, but I think I could have struck a better balance by making the shoulders black, or perhaps the inner part of the upper shoulder – transposed the white panel and little black box on the shoulder.

Don’t bite off more than you can chew.

Kreoss says so…

I’ll admit that by the end I wasn’t painting fast on principle, I was painting fast just so I’d be done.  I think 5 models this size was a bit much.  Two heavies, three lights, or a 6-man unit would be good sizes.  This small army (nearly 20 points) was just too much.  There was too much time between stages, and I didn’t see results fast enough.  It was also far too long before the metallics went on, and for my Khador that’s fine since there isn’t much to them, but this scheme called for lots of bronze, it’s a major component of the scheme.

I tackled too big of a project, and I think that’s what caused me the most discomfort during this experiment.  It wasn’t really the “you can’t fix it until the end” rule, nor was it the fact I hadn’t thought about how I wanted to do the bases at all.  It was that I didn’t see results fast enough to stay motivated.

Conclusion:

The rules of speedpainting certainly help.  had I stopped and fixed mistakes, or worked on these models serially, I would have gotten caught up in every little detail, and I’d have maybe one of these models done by now.

  1. Pick a small group of models, something you can work on easily and in a timely fashion.  2 heavies, 3 lights, or a min unit are ideal.
  2. Make a vow to not fix any mistakes when they happen.  Fix them only when you are completely done.
  3. Start with your darkest color and your biggest brush.
    1. Paint as close to the edges and details as you are comfortable with your current brush.  Paint all the same bits on all your group of models.
    2. Swap to a smaller brush, and edge the panels you painted in the previous step, cleanly defining the edges.
  4. Switch to your shading color(s) and repeat steps 2A and 2B, then go to 4.
  5. Switch to your highlight color(s) and repeat steps  2A and 2B, then go to 5.
  6. Switch to your next lightest color in your scheme, and go to 2A.

Good Luck!