Tau

All posts tagged Tau

After getting back from the NOVA Open, I needed to work on something different than Warmachine and Hordes.  Different sculptors and model manufacturers have different aesthetics and that means they offer different painting experiences.  I needed a change of pace, so I dug out my Tau and started working on one of the new(er) XV-8 Crisis Battlesuits.  They redesigned these not long ago, and they are spectacular.  There’s detail all over, they go together really nicely, and offer quite a bit more pose-ability than the older models (which are about 15 years old):

Some of my first models, back from April of 2004.

Some of my first models, from back in April of 2004.

The Scheme

I wanted to do an urban theme this go around, as a way to practice weathering and to work on more interesting and complex basing.  The urban environment dictated a mostly grey color palette, so I got out a set of four colors and my airbrushes and started playing around.  For all of the “white” and “black” on the model, I’m using the following Vallejo colors:  Black, German Grey, London Grey and White.  Often, while working off the wet palette, I’ll mix the three intermediaries, giving me roughly seven shades from pure black to pure white.

I started with the legs, which had large areas of armor and joints/structure.  This offered a nice place to play with both black and white, and make them interesting.  I used the airbrush to do the bulk of the work and show me where highlights and shadows should go and then enhanced the extremes with brushwork.  After some edge highlighting, I was pretty happy with the factory fresh look I’d achieved.  This is the requisite first step before weathering.

Mmmmm, lookin' fine!

Mmmmm, lookin’ fine!

Once I’d ironed out the style and method I liked, I proceeded to screw it up on the torso.  Instead of using my tight beam Sotar for the final highlight of white, I used my Patriot 105 which had a larger, fire hose sized needle equipped.  It made grainy transitions and forced me to re-spray the white with the Sotar.  This made it too bright, and the white edge highlighting barely shows up.  Phooey.

Good airbrushing, bad edge highlights

Re-worked airbrushing, invisible edge highlights

As you can see above, I built an urban base.  Because broken asphalt + road markings + rusty pipes = urban, right?  That’s all you need!  The asphalt is just thick cork, and the pipe’s a plastic tube.  The rest is flock, paint and weathering pigments.  There’s a more detailed tutorial coming on how I do this kind of base, later.  It’s not difficult, but like weathering, it’s an annoying number of layers and lots of waiting for things to dry.

After getting through nearly all the edge highlighting, I really wanted to add a pop of color, so I threw down some green on the Tau icons and backpack.  These were all done by hand, using several layers and mixtures of the P3 greens. The small bits of color really pop off the more monotone armor.

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The last pic shows the back of the model, and lack of highlights on the jet pack exhaust.  Like the glow effects from the green bits, I want to wait until after I do the weathering, since those glow effects would sit on top of the weathering effects.  Additionally, I haven’t picked out any of the typical “off color” armor panels that most Tau paint schemes are known for.  Since those will be a pain to do by airbrush (especially now, with the model completely glued together), they’ll likely have to be done by hand.  Getting the highlighting and shading on those to line up and fit with the existing armor will be oodles of fun.

All of that in Part 2, whenever that happens.  For the immediate future, this guy’s going in the display cabinet.  Next up on my paint table are some commissions!

 

Clint is back again discussing his Tau endeavors as we get ready to begin the Ceres IV Campaign…

I am back from the amazing event which is NOVA Open here in the DC/Virginia area. Though I went to kick friendly and figurative dirt in the faces of other Warmachine players in good-natured competition, I spent most of my free moments wheeling and dealing with vendors over Tau. After also winning a raffle (woo hoo!) and trading away a few spare models on Bartertown, I expanded my collection thusly:

  • Riptide x1
  • Hammerhead x1
  • Crisis Suits x….9
  • Stealth Suits x3
  • Pathfinders x20
  • Darkstrider
ApoxBox

Yay for Apocalypse Formations!

I stated in my first write-up I was shying away from armor and despite the Hammerhead pick-up, I’m actually more resolute. I plan to use zero armor pieces in my eventual “completed” force. The deal on it was good so I picked it up in hopes of prodding Plarzoid into a trade from his Tau bucket. I still have hopes he’ll complete a force after his Dark Angels and join me in the Tau greater-goodliness. I also contemplated picking up the official model for the Fireblade Cadre, but thought better of it since he’s basically a $25 Fire Warrior model I can create myself with a few bits and some green stuff.

Going back to the list of new additions, you read it correctly, I have added nine Crisis Suits bringing my total to fifteen. Because the nature of this project is character, creativity, and aesthetically driven, I now have enough spare models to create all the concepts I can dream up and store them in a rogues gallery of retinue options, so to speak. They’ll be a lot more complicated to build so for this installment, I’m grinding out as many Fire Warriors and other force staples as I can.

Continue Reading

Some locals and I are getting our feet wet into 40k as a beer and pretzels game, and a way to tell some fun stories about our characters.  I’m likely to run Dark Angels (despite the earlier Tau Paint Scheme which is completely unrelated).  Buddy Ron is going to play Dark Eldar, and we may have a few others as well.  This is LynchPin’s thoughts on his Tau force.

Originally, I got my nerdly feet wet with a Warhammer Fantasy Dark Elf army back in high school. I played a few games here and there, but didn’t have much guidance or understanding on how to build a strategic army or fill army slots. But man was I sold on the models. My so called “army” consisted of the bare essentials of two regiments of Dark Elf spearmen followed by every big toy you can imagine; I had Malekith riding a dragon, Assassins, Ballista Warmachines, etc, etc. I didn’t really dive fully into the wargaming pool until I became enamored with Warhammer 40k 3.5 edition after I spent a couple of years in college. I poured over unit options, built solid armies, and strove to learn the Black Tome forwards and backwards. After experiencing the competitive scene for 40k though, I slowly abandoned the game in favor of a decade happily spent playing Warmachine. Though over the years, every so often, I find myself surfing over to the Games Workshop website on lazy Sunday afternoons to drool over new plastic kits and ever impressive sculpts from newly updated armies.

Malekith on Dragon, painted by Minus of DakkaDakka

Malekith on Dragon, painted by Minus of DakkaDakka

I’ve thoroughly allowed Warmachine to become the game I play as competitively as I can, but I do yearn for an opportunity to fiddle with 40k modeling and build a force based very little on tactics and competitive edge and more on a pleasing aesthetic that keeps a focus on what I enjoy modeling and telling a narrative about. I’ve been treading water, hoping one day to find a good group of like-minded people who were interested in doing a 40k project with the same aspirations in mind and who have decided to leave their razor sharp competitive edge dulled and rusted by sentiments such as: “oh that twin-linked flamer Crisis Suit looks awesome. I’m doing that.” And so I have. Continue Reading

I’ve had my eye on painting some Tau models for a while.  While I’m not a huge fan of GW’s various price hikes and lack of game balance, the amazing background and gorgeous models are undeniable.  The Tau have held my attention since they first came out years ago.  I remember picking up a copy of White Dwarf and some Space Marines at my LGS when I was super young, and making my dad turn around and go back so I could buy the codex that had just come out.

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Anyway, a while back I had done up a Tau Gun Drone as a paint scheme test.  I used P3 Bloodstone as the base for the brown, and P3 Meredius Blue for the aqua.  Here, I’ve changed the highlight for the Bloodstone from P3 Rucksack Tan to P3 Heartfire mixed with a little Bloodstone, thanks to the recipe that kommander_redfinger used for some commissioned trolls in this thread.

Anyway, I’ve started working on the shadows and highlights on the battlesuit.

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Libby

More Libby, as requested. We’re playing fetch!