Tuesday, 21 February 2017

BitzBox Warband Champion on Palanquin

This BitzBox warband project had been on hold (and forever pushed further down the painting queue) largely due to this fella. It was great fun to kitbash and convert; delving into my box of bits to create a new palanquin and leader, but the thought of painting the bastard was daunting to say the least.

But I've done it and as usual it was never as bad as I had expected or built it up (a bit like public speaking). 

So here he is; Seth Spawnbloat. Level 10 Human. Champion of Nurgle. Infestation of Nurlings. Atrophied Arm, Enormously Fat. Palanquin, Shield, Warhammer


I primed the whole thing black (to make sure it was dark in-between all the nurglings) and then used a zenithal application of white from above. I much prefer using my ink washes/glazes over a white undercoat and then building up the subsequent highlights over the top of that.

With the Nurglings I used a limited palette of just yellow, green and orange inks (some mixed together) to keep all of the nurglings unified in colour. After the various washes were dry I highlighted up, which was a pretty tiresome effort.


The wooden areas were washed and glazed with a variety of greys and pale browns for the baser colour and then highlighted up with pale greys to try and create a weathered and old looking wood effect. A final addition of some subtle green glazes were applied to give a slightly mossy look to the wood. The idea being that a slightly green tinge to the wood would be complemented by the orangy/red rust colour on the metal areas.

The writhing mass of bodies on the throne (which was fun to make) created a few challenges. I wanted to make them look like they were the same colour as the wood, so that they were actually part of the throne, but this time highlighted up with a little Elf Flesh so as to give them a bit of a warmer skin tone.


You may have noticed the tattered awning surrounding the palanquin. This was an addtition that I expected to make as there was a slightly annoying gap between nurglings and palanquin that ruined the illusion of the mass of nurglings lifting the dais. To mask this I added this decoration and deliberately made it look tatty, both by ripping the paper and washing several layers of grungy sepias, browns and greens.

The images on the awning are taken directly from the page borders found in the Lost and the Damned.


Likewise the banner behind the champion. My first idea was to use a crow illustration from the Fighting Fantasy books but it looked a bit lost on amongst so much else. The black lining could not really compete with the busy-ness of the model. So I painted over it with the most iconic Nurgle image possible, Les Edward's original illustration for the Lost and the Damned itself - just on a tiny scale!

It actually wasn't as hard to do as I though it might be. Once I had added some thin layers of background colour, I went about sketching the outline of the GUO onto the background with diluted black and then added the shadows with Rhinox brown, before building up successive highlights with a range of pale greens and yellows. I then re-emphasised the shadows and added some spots of pinky/red for the sores.


The champion himself needed to stand out amongst the colours I'd already used and I'd already decided that I wanted him to look quite pale. I ended up going a bit pinker than expected, only to make him pop from all the other colours. 

Writing this all out does always make me realise just how much internal thinking occurs when painting models, an ongoing internal monologue.

The final element to complete was the shield and again I wanted to create a nice contrast with the warmer colours of the champ, so I hit the demonic shield with the baby-blue treatment and a bit of subtle purple on the tongue and yellow on the horn to mimic the warmth of the flames higher up in the composition.


So has the painted version lived up to my expectations? Those expectations were pretty damn high after being so proud of the actual build of this model and I have to say that I think the paint job does the model justice. I'm certainly happy with all the decisions I made and the composition and balance of the whole piece holds up. I know I'll never be the best painter around, but this is up there with my very best.

Hope you enjoy it too. I'll post up some photos of the finished bitzbox warband later..