Art and writing are what this blog is all about. For a long time I’ve done little of either. I’m going to kick off the first official post of this blog with a miniature I completed a few months ago. I’ll be featuring more of these as I get them photographed and presentation ready.
Before moving to Alabamastan I worked at a Game/ Comic book shop that became one of the best experiences of my life. I met good people and genuinely enjoyed my job. I haven’t looked fondly on a job since I was in high school. During my time at the game store I became immersed in tabletop gaming and was seduced by the allure of Games Workshop’s Warhammer properties.
Everyone that worked at the store were veterans of the game by many years, some having played since the First Edition/ Rogue Trader days. I was determined to know the game, not just to fit in, not just because the culture of the store was built around Warhammer, but because most of our customers had questions about it and I wasn’t going to be the only guy who couldn’t answer them! The more I learned, the deeper I was immersed.
I love the lore of Warhammer 40K, the setting is wonderful to put it mildly. The game itself I could take or leave, but I do love the hobby aspects. I love miniatures and painting them combines my love of art with the miniature aspect. Bringing to life a character from this series brings me a lot of joy. Building my own characters and armies around a brief story has become a real passion of mine. The only downfall is that I don’t have a small labor force to make it happen faster.
Forgeworld is a subsidiary of Games Workshop that specializes in hand made, resin miniatures that are extremely detailed. Because of the specialized nature of Forgeworld, this subsidiary can produce more esoteric and more risky ventures than Games Workshop. But, there is an added bonus for me as a storyteller. The setting is even more rich, more real, and more dramatic at Forgeworld. Games Workshop has turned their property into a caricature of itself by reducing their powerful story into a toy oriented framework. Some of the miniatures are detailed, others are absurd and cartoony. There is no consistency and the story of the world is uneven to say the least.
Forgeworld specializes in keeping the setting dramatic and serious. Because of this my first army was Death Korps of Krieg Army and my son has a multi-era (Crusade, Heresy, 35K, 40K) Ultramarines army. These values are reflected and culminated inside their Horus Heresy series, a line of miniatures originating from 40K backstory and developed from a line of novels of the same name.
For my first art presentation on this blog I’ve chosen Fulgrim, Primarch of the Emperor’s Children. One of the twenty genetically engineered sons of the Emperor of Mankind. These Primarchs lead a Legion of men that have been genetically modified with genes from their primogenitor Primarch. In turn, these Legionaries are a kind of sons to the Primarch.
Fulgrim was the hardest of all the Primarch models I’ve painted thus far. They are all difficult in their own regard, but Fulgrim’s armor is extremely detailed and ornate. The miniature proved quite a challenge to my skills. Fulgrim became a constant source of stress and he was shelved for a bit while I started and finished Angron, while I attempted to think out some of Fulgrim’s problems.
A Primarch model is not only expensive, but they occupy, as a collective, the second most important slot in the entire Warhammer lore, second only to the Emperor himself. They demand attention and care. My goal with the Primarchs and the Heresy era character series of models is to produce the most accurate representations, grounded in as much reality as the Warhammer setting can muster. This philosophy has permeated all my Warhammer 40000 work, I try to keep things as “real” as possible. The cartoony look that the ‘Eavy Metal team produces is of zero interest to me. I choose to work in the same way Forgeworld chooses to approach the Warhammer universe: seriously.
After reading the fifth book of the Horus Heresy series: Fulgrim I became very attached to the title character in the lore. Ultimately, I wanted him to be represented as he would be at the height of his power in service to humanity. I felt this was the best way to represent him across all eras. Briefly, I was tempted to switch weapons with the Primarch Ferrus Manus to remain faithful to the text and the centerpiece duel between Fulgrim and his closest brother at the Istvaan V massacre.
I chose to age the armor of the Primarchs, not only to show that they have been in use for well over a century, but the tarnished gold of their armor represents the sin they each carry within. For all their greatness and renown they are all deeply flawed in their own ways.
Looking at the model everyday in my personal display collection I’m humbled by how much I went through to complete this work, thinking at times I had ruined him, but miraculously pulling it all together in the end. Most of all I learned that I need to be extremely patient with miniature painting. I have a desire to complete the model as fast as possible and that impatience gets me into trouble everyday. I want to give each piece the respect it deserves.
Technique wise I want to get better at painting eyes, glass/ jewels, and I need to learn to simulate small writing. I really wanted to ornately detail his oaths, but I just couldn’t do it. I painted over it and just weathered the paper. In regards to the eyes; the heads of the Primarchs are massive by comparison to a normal 25mm figure, but they were still challenging. I find eyes to be one of the most difficult things to master in miniature painting.
Thanks for taking a look at my work. I’ll get another one posted up in a few days as I continue to photograph more of my work. I also plan on doing more recent works as I progress on them and produce more posts by taking a look at other art related topics.
In the meantime if you would like to see some of my other miniatures you can visit my Flickr page by clicking on the pictures in the right column.