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The Alien Wars of the Nova Terra Interregnum – M35

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#1
Apologist

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- It is the 35th Millennium -

 

The Imperium is in turmoil. Faith wars with rationality as the Ecclesiarchy and Administratum tussle for power.

 

In disgust, the Ur-council of Nova Terra has led a fifth part of the Imperium into secession, striking out to forge a new destiny of their own.

 

Seers speak hauntingly of the half-remembered terrors of Old Night, as warpstorm activity increases across the galaxy.

 

The veil grows thin.

 

Against a galaxy in flames, as mankind falls on itself, the Blood Angels stand as bulwark in the east.

 

Even as the eyes of man turns inwards, the Angels strike out at the gathering horrors of the galaxy.

 

- The Alien Wars begin -

 

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+++

 

+ What are the Alien Wars? +

+ The Alien Wars Setting +

 

The Alien Wars is a project that invites you to make a model (or more) that fits into the Nova Terra Interregnum of M35, a period of instability in the Imperium that saw the resurgence of Xenos threats against a divided Imperium.

 

The broad groupings are:


  • Xenos – major and minor; the Xenos are in the ascendant across the galaxy.

  • Secessionists – Imperium Minor; those loyal to Constantium/Nova Terra

  • Old Imperials – The Greater Imperium; loyal to Ancient Terra

  • Astartes – Studiously neutral – mostly...


 

This is a broad brief; intentionally so, because there's very little written about this period of 40k history. There are a few hints here and there, but it's very open for your ideas. I encourage you to think in the Rogue Trader spirit – the galaxy of the period is full of mystery and potential; and you're more free than ever to come up with something new and exciting, with every opportunity to do something that you've always wanted to do.

 

+++

 

+ How do I get involved? +
Build your model (or models) and share it:

 
Painted models, with a short piece of colour text (~500 words) explaining how they fit in the setting, are the gold standard.
 
 
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+++

 

 

 

[+Original first post+]

 

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+++

 

+ Squad Raphael, Third Company +

 

(Or, in the mannered language of Baal circa 191.M35: 'The Wards of Furiel under Lord DahavauronPrince of the Erelim; 3rd Strateia of the Host of the Angels of the Blood.')

 

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Sinistro a Dexter:


  • Brother Donato (Duhael 4:12)

  • Brother Malatesta (Durbael 2:17)

  • Sergeant Raphael (Furiel 8:04)

  • Brother Farnese (Shemhamphorae 1:20)

  • Brother Barbarigo (Durbael 4:11)


 

 

d.jpg

 

Sinistro a Dexter


  • Brother Lucian (Abacyel 3:12)

  • Brother El-Aster (Ambriel 1:01)

  • Brother Mephisto (Rashin Rast 2:05)

  • Brother Thaddeus (Saditel 4:04, called the lost)

  • Brother Engel (Narieal 4:10)


 

+++

 

Wait, what?

A lot of the above likely sounds like gibberish! The naming scheme above is a development of one I made up for my May You Live Forever project, the details of which can be seen here

 

 

The plan

The army I'm building is a modern take on the Blood Angels Third Company army from WD139, one of the first issues I read, back when I was a nipper. This is a bit of a love letter to 40k, then and now; and combining what I think is the best of both.

 

The originals:

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My interpretation so far:

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+++

[Original first post]


Edited by Apologist, 10 September 2019 - 10:24 AM.

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#2
Commissar Molotov

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Excellent stuff! As with all of your projects, I look forward to seeing this progress!


 
QUOTE (voi shet magir @ May 31 2011, 05:38 AM) 
That is an unexpectedly strong assertion from a dead person.

#3
Chandrian

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Now that's a super cool idea with the old/modern look! While the old look will always hold a special place, the new version you've created look outstanding! 

 

can't wait to seem them fully painted!


Works In Progress 

 

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#4
OakRiver

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Great to see the Blood Angels get more love, especially from such a seminal member of the community



#5
Xin Ceithan

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Loved your Iron Hands, pretty pumped for this. Even if it's bloody loyalists again ;)
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#6
Olis

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It's Apologist doing Blood Angels. What's not to like? ^_^


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#7
Isengrin

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Nooooooooooooooooooooo! I knew it!

 

...

 

...

 

...

 

So, uh, those look nice. Judging by your outstanding work with Cinnamon, this will be a fun ride.



#8
Kordhal

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I am so hyped for this. Your progress so far is looking soooooo good.


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#9
terminatorAM

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I'll be watching this with much interest...and only a same about of drool

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#10
Apologist

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Well, that's an enthusiastic start! Thanks all. Not a tremendously exciting follow-up post from me, but I wanted to record how I'm painting them as I go along.

 

1: Prime using Halford's red primer

g.jpg

 

2: Spray using Mephiston Red spray.

f.jpg

This is the first time I've tried out one of GW's spray colours. Usually I'd brush on the base coat, but this seems a good way to keep the result vibrant.

 

3: Establish the principal tones – base in dark brown (Rhinox Hide), then a selective application of Seraphim Sepia. Once dry, pick out metal areas:

o.jpg

 

[to be continued]

 

+++

 

The models themselves are minor conversions of the new Primaris marines. Aside from kitbashing the head and backpacks, the only real work for the majority is removing some of the sculpted detail (chest eagles, icons on boltguns etc.)  and to reshape the ankle areas. I've varied the raised gorget; leaving some intact, reshaping others (as below), and removing it entirely for others.

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The weapons are pleasingly simple to swap out, which makes giving them weapons that look appropriate for the RT/2nd ed. period pretty easy:

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The retro-flamer was a toss-up between the one from the genestealer cultist sprue and the one on the Mark III sprue. I plumped for the latter, on the basis that it's easier to get duplicates for future squads.

 

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The missile launcher's a resin one, but the plastic one from the Mark IV sprue should work equally well. I found a little cutting and fiddling necessary with the hand and backpack to get the launcher to sit right, but otherwise it was a pretty painless process. In fact, I spent the most time on this conversion in making the 2nd ed. style trigger mechanism in the marine's left hand. This is a trimmed-down auspex, with the aerials cut down and repositioned to act as buttons.


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#11
Eberious

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Cool, the missile launcher fits really nice. I have a few of those 30k launchers, might try it myself. I don't have the SM codex yet, is it an option?


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#12
Apologist

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Cool, the missile launcher fits really nice. I have a few of those 30k launchers, might try it myself. I don't have the SM codex yet, is it an option?

I'm afraid I don't know how it'll work in game terms, but presumably they're still an option for Tactical/Devastator squads. Because the army's intended to follow the older models, I imagine there'll be a few oddments that'll need clarification before gaming with it.

 

+++

As noted on Death of a Rubricist, the original army list included a Lieutenant – at the time, it was a compulsory choice, I believe. As far as I'm aware, however, I don't think the GW studio ever painted one for their army. He turns up in a later battle report as a gunner in a land speeder – a clever way to deal with the lack of a model! 

 

However, I wanted to build a Lieutenant, as they're now a legal choice again – the opportunity was too good to miss. Here's the result:

a.jpg

 

Taking inspiration from the Captain, I've included a halo (though not the death mask; that'll be reserved for 'Captain Tycho', or however I end up squaring that particular temporal circle). He has a banner – as these were very popular at the time – and a loincloth similar to the Blood Angels Captain model used for Tycho.

 

Modern details include the wrist-mounted control pad thingie (which seemed suitable for a commander), while old background came back in the use of the skull-headed eagle pauldron and leg decoration.

 

I didn't want him wielding two weapons, so he's carrying a scroll case (doubtless of some religious or spiritual quality), though I might try and replace that with some prayer beads.


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#13
Apologist

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+ Furiel 8:04 +

 

Painting begins; so here's a shot of Sergeant Raphael alongside two ne'er-do-wells to show the size of the chap. 

 

r.jpg

 

While I'm broadly pleased, red's always been a personal bugbear of mine. In fact, part of the reason I wanted to tackle this project was so I could face my fears and get to a comfortable place with the colour, I'm not entirely happy with the red here. I really like the purple-shot shadows, but I think the highlights are a hint too yellow...

 

I'll take the model through to completion and then re-assess. I find looking at things midway through is a shortcut to dissatisfaction and spoiling a perfectly good model. 

 

I'm impressed with the model itself, though I was surprised with how flat the sculpt of the face was; very little interesting texture to work with. 


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Officio Monstrosa – Iron Warriors during the siege of Terra | The Praetors of Calth – Ultramarines from Crusade to Scouring


#14
malika666

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Awesome stuff! I demand shoulder mounted heavy bolters as well!

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#15
BeatTheBeat

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Mate, that's an AMAZING red. Love the gradient from purple to yellow, I don't think it's in need of change at all. Gorgeous.

Cheers,
BTB


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#16
Calas Typhon

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I think the highlights are far too yellow in my eyes however..

 

The red is absolutely perfect though and the shading is fantastic. As expected, it looks great!



#17
Isengrin

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The yellow does look a bit peculiar and it kinda distracts from an otherwise excellent model. Don't get me wrong, the highlights aren't bad and it's probably because I'm not used to see this style from you msn-wink.gif. The purple shading on the other hand is great. Have you thought about glazing over the highlights with orange or something else to dull them? But, yeah, maybe it's just the typical mid-painting-dread...gets me all the time.

 

Btw, do you have any plans on expanding the marginal lore of the Interregnum for your Blood Angels?


Edited by Isengrin, 07 August 2017 - 10:36 PM.


#18
OakRiver

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Beautiful work. I've always found red to be a challenge to paint, and photograph. My Blood Angels take about 10 layers of red, shade, and highlights to get a strong color. I like the addition of purple in your scheme though.



#19
Prospekt

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Holistically excellent as always, Apologist - your projects always follow a well-planned scaffold which guides their execution, and this is no different. It's the little details that really bring a force together and even this early stage of the plog demonstrates that: I especially like the mystic superfluity of the naming conventions, and their evocations of the Abrahamic angels. Not to mention the marble backdrop, which drives home the finery of the Host even more.

 

I'm actually quite fond of the vibrant yellow highlights; they are a visual throwback to the style of 2nd ed Marines, so it suits what you're going for quite well. If you still wish to tone them down though, you might consider saving them for the most extreme of edges, so that the difference in colour (red and yellow are quite distinct as opposed to dark blue and, well, light blue) is reserved for where most light catches. Or perhaps a glaze of Carroburg Crimson to tie everything together!

 

Either way, it's a very promising start, and I'm eagerly awaiting what comes next for the Wards of Furiel :)


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#20
Apologist

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Thanks all – a bit of background today; but in answer to some questions:

 

Awesome stuff! I demand shoulder mounted heavy bolters as well!

 

Then you will be pleased!

 

The yellow does look a bit peculiar and it kinda distracts from an otherwise excellent model. Don't get me wrong, the highlights aren't bad and it's probably because I'm not used to see this style from you msn-wink.gif. The purple shading on the other hand is great. Have you thought about glazing over the highlights with orange or something else to dull them? But, yeah, maybe it's just the typical mid-painting-dread...gets me all the time.

 

The technique is consciously a bit different, as I wanted to try out a more classic, vibrant approach than the grungy approach I favour. However, even though I've gone for a cleaner look, I think my underlying painting style shows through anyway – seems you can't teach an antique autolocutor new syntax-cascades.

 

Thanks all for the comments on the progress thus far. I'm going to refine it a bit further, probably by highlighting with a creamier white-yellow mix, rather than red-yellow. I now need to work out what I'm doing for the boltgun casings (yellow, like the first picture in the blog, or black as in the classics?) and the tilt shields. etc.

 

 

 

Btw, do you have any plans on expanding the marginal lore of the Interregnum for your Blood Angels?

 

Regarding the background of the Interregnum, read on...

 

+++

 

BAAL 191.M35

 

Look closely. Through the storms. A mountain range. Closer. Closer. There.

 

The Chapterhouse of Bibelo is one amongst dozens in the Otranto wing. Like much else of the fortress-monastery, most are closed, their statuary draped with cloth, their doors bolted and windows shuttered.

 

Periodically, nomadically, the Chapter moves from one Chapterhouse to another, like aristocrats in a too-large manse. The last in the cycle is closed, reverently, its treasures covered and boxed; even as the next is opened.

 

The serfs, servitors and aspirants go in advance, bearing incense-suffused candela-torches; brooms, brushes, and rad-gear. Dust is chased from the Chapterhouse, cloth is beaten jealously, tarnished metal made to shine once more. All is restored as best the staff are able. Masterworks – paintings, sculptures, tapestries – are cycled from shadow to shadow to preserve them. Those locked in place – the frescos, the carvings – must bear the pernicious sun with naught but dustcloth to preserve them.

It is a battle against entropy itself.

 

A serf carefully lifts aside a cloth of fine cottovellum, and grimaces. The painting – an angular rendering of the fourth Prince of the Existon – made a mere decade ago, reveals varnish that is already yellowing in Baal's hard atmosphere. It is a scene repeated across the Chapterhouse, hundreds of swathed men, women and children hesitantly revealing what has failed since last the Chapter stood here.

 

A handful of the oldest works in the Chapterhouse were made mere centuries after the Division. These are little more than mustard-brown smears, the images beneath all but lost. The wood carvings are bleached. Stone has endured better, but forty-five centuries of accidents – even if only once in a generation – means that rare here is the statue that stands unblemished by time.

 

Still, the Chapterhouse of Bibelo is one amongst dozens in the complex. Tucked in a nook of the monastery, nestling between the mountainside and the Chamber Cordaline, it has survived better than most. Some, shamefully, have fallen into mandated disuse; rad-rot having penetrated too deeply, the roofing collapsing, walls slumping, or general disrepair overcoming the staff's ability to make good the damage.

 

A series of Masters – Malapapa, the two Leos, Amareo – made reforms to the monastery; even extended it. The Strateia were scattered about the whole extent; though even with an entourage of servants, the Astartes of the Chapter could not fill the suites and chambers. In the time of Locasto, it was common for the whole brotherhood to be stationed here, but even then, how could a thousand hope to fill a space made for legion?

 

It was, and remains, an echoing place.

 

Today, as the Imperium bears another period of extended conflict, the Fortress Monastery of the Blood Angels is owl-haunted, its garrison positively skeletal.

 

+++

 

Today, the Chapter assembles in the Chapterhouse of Bibelo – at least, those brethren present. Two members of the Chaplaincy stand in the centre of the alongside Martan, the Sanguinarian, and Master Formosus, heir of Sanguinius.

 

The current Kolonio garrison company – the honoured Erelim, the third Strateia – enters, heads up, white honour-stoles across broad shoulders. Ancient Nonesuch heads the parade, the Prince Dahavauron (or Erasmus Tycho, to give him his atroatican name) a humble step behind. Montefeltro, Tycho's lieutenant, follows in turn; and behind him the Wards of Erelim.

 

A handful of ascendant scouts are next, bearing banners, honours, and golden images of the Emperor on long nalwood staves. Trailing these are scores of retainers, plenitentaries and honoured indents, led by the Maestri Internuncia.

 

Finally, the scarlet-armoured veterans of another war march in, to take up their role as Kolonio in turn. These are the fifth Strateia, the Oertha, commanded by Prince Ofaniel Glorioso. Only they are not. Not any more. Ofaniel is borne in an adamantium casket by four of his charges. One limps, favouring his right leg. One is missing an arm. The eye takes in barely eighty brethren; and some of them are marked with the heraldry of the reserves. It has clearly been a hard war.

 

Warriors take their places in the gleaming Chapterhouse, standing or seating themselves rigidly on the pews as per their duty. Serfs scuttle about, namato-putti flit to the rafters. Marching falls to shuffling, then to silence.

 

'Who commands?' The rich voice calls out, across a room barely a quarter filled, but once more resplendant and vital. The Chaplain-Sabatine, Puglius, is an imposing figure, but as Master Formosus – scarred and pitted – steps forward, even he is thrown into shade.

 

'I speak for Ofaniel. I speak for the dead.' The Chaplain-Sabatine bows and steps back, leaving the Chapter Master to ascend to the heart of the Chamber.

 

Time passes, as the honorifics are played out according to ritual. Montefeltro has heard the change of Kolonio many times, but it is an anchor to him, as Baal is an anchor to the soul of the Chapter. This is an age of change and challenge, and the rituals are reassuring to him.

 

+++

 

Montefeltro has lived the lifetime of four men, and yet does not remember a time before the Twin Imperium. He knows, half-unconsciously, that it began in the time of Amareo, or Master Falstaff, or Conccio; and the Blood Angels aligned themselves with Terra; or Nova Terra; or were studiedly neutral. What does it matter to him?

 

In these enlightened times, the chronicling of antiquities is dead. There is little enough time for the present. Why look backwards into the past? What of relevance can it teach him? What could it hold up to the verities of the Ecclesiarchy?

 

...And yet...

 

...And yet Master Formosus is pushing the Chapter towards renaissance. Not for him the comforting certainties of ritual, of divinity, of acceptance. To become a Chapter Master is to become an Imperial Commander. To be an Imperial Commander is to grasp that rarest of duties, that rarest of rights; that right and duty to question.


Edited by Apologist, 16 August 2017 - 12:42 PM.

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#21
Apologist

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The following recipe's as much an aide memoir to myself as advice – I'm certainly no authority on painting red. Note the first steps are duplicated in an earlier post; I wanted to keep everything together.

 

+++

+ Practical: Painting retro Blood Angels Red +

Spoiler

_1 Prime using Halford's red primer. Good coverage with this warm primer will help to disguise any later mishaps – having small gaps here and there will reveal red areas, which will take fewer layers to cover – important for a clean finish.

 

Spoiler

_2 I toyed with the idea of a zenithal spray (i.e. spraying just from certain angles), but in the end decided to go for as even a finish as I could get. I used GW's Mephiston Red spray; a first for me. Because mistakes are so obvious in red, I wanted to get as even and consistent a red as possible, and one as close to the paint colour I would be using. The difference between the priming and basecoat here is not immediately obvious in the pictures, but is clearer to see in person.

 

Spoiler

_3 Once dry, paint the base using Rhinox Hide. I do this early on for two reasons. Firstly, to provide some contrast, and secondly, if I accidentally get some paint on the feet, it's easier to clean up as we come to paint the armour. Once the base is dry, wash the recesses of the armour (note, not the whole model, just the recesses) with Gryphonne/Seraphim Sepia, allow to dry, then pick out the metal/black areas with Chaos/Abaddon black.

 

Spoiler

_4 Mix Mephiston Red and Vermillion (Vallejo model colours) and repaint the red areas. In addition to strengthening the colours, it adds a layer over the base coat and alters the texture, making sure everything's consistent. This mix is slightly orange – in the past, my reds have always been quite cold and blue-tinted, so I wanted to try a yellow-tinted red here.

 

Spoiler

_5 Initial highlights start to go on now, with the addition of Flash Gitz Yellow to the mix (a mistake; I should have used a warmer yellow like Golden Yellow). These are built up slowly, paying attention to the direction of the light. The image here shows the early stages; and they're not particularly visible. The marine's right gauntlet shows it most clearly, but you'll get a better idea if you skip ahead ot the next stage, where the highlights are more obvious.

 

Spoiler

_6 With the highlights in place, I decided to use a glaze to blend things together. I'd usually use an ink (Winsor & Newton inks are good), but in the spirit of experiementation – and a desire to avoid a glossy finish in the recesses – I used GW's Bloodletter Glaze. A glaze will soften transitions, but the depth it gives to the red makes it well worth it.

 

Spoiler

_7 With the glaze completely dry, it's time to turn up the contrast. Because we want to keep the impression red, we can't over-emphasise the highlights, or it'll risk turning the impression orange. Instead, we concentrate on the shadows. Building the tone up here increases the contrast and further emphasises the red. I used a watery mix of Liche Purple, sepia ink and flow enhancer to get a rich tone, then built up the shading with both washes; in deep recesses and areas of strong texture like the soft undersuit, and glazes; in large rounded areas, like the insides of the legs and on the knees.

 

Spoiler

This essentially completes the basic red armour. If necessary, you can reinstate highlights or further develop the shadows until you achieve the correct tonal balance. Remember, what's 'correct' is what looks right to you. If you're unsure, put the figure down, walk away for a few minutes and come back to it later, with fresh eyes.

 

+ Append-note +

Since this point, I've gone back in and refined the highlights with a creamier, less yellow mix (Vallejo Vermillion, Vallejo White and Flash Gitz Yellow), for this result:

Spoiler


Edited by Apologist, 10 August 2017 - 09:08 AM.

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The Alien Wars – Blood Angels in the Nova Terra Interregnum | May You Live Forever – A narrative Iron Hands blog

Officio Monstrosa – Iron Warriors during the siege of Terra | The Praetors of Calth – Ultramarines from Crusade to Scouring


#22
Apologist

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+ Sergeant Raphael completed +

 

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+ Of the Third Hour; ascended under the auspices of Veguaniel. Fourth of the name Furiel in the Eighth Cycle. +

 

 

Phew, first one off the blocks:

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I hope he's recognisable as an update of the Sergeant from the first squad of the original army. There are obvious differences in detail – the tilt plate is an obvious one – and working out how to paint the intricate details of the modern plastic against the softer, cleaner lead model was quite fun.

 

I toyed with yellow bolter casings, but decided in the end to stay as close as possible to the original inspiration with this squad. One little detail I really like on the new Primaris models is the little box for automatically blessing bolt shells – that, in a nutshell, is 40k for me.

 

The freehand Chapter symbol was fun (certainly more fun than the damn Iron Warriors' symbol!) to do, too. This shot also shows the basing – I've tried to create a slightly varied desert waste using various sandy browns. The intention is practical: being generic enough to serve as Baal or Armageddon, while fitting in nicely with my Lamb's World Guard, too...

 

The black areas, as usual, were not quite black – I've mixed in a hint of Flash Gitz Yellow and Charadon Granite to stop it being completely dead, and to give me some 'tonal room' to shade with.

 

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One change I did make was to the backpacks, rendering them completely in metal – a nod to older models. Rather than deadening black, I washed them with Leviathan Purple and Seraphim Sepia. These mixed on the surface to form interesting neutrals. Because I also used these washes on the red armour, it helps to tie the piece together.

 

Note also the helmet on the belt. I wanted to hint at the Blood Angels' fondness for artistry, so this sergeant has been honoured with a slightly modified helm. While Raphael needed to be bare-headed (to follow the inspiration), I had to make the decision of what type to use across the army here, as squad 2 has a helmed sergeant. An elaborate haloed style would probably be too much – it would look over the top on the other sergeant, not to mention faintly ridiculous on the belt...

 

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The right pad is an example of where I've gone off-piste a bit. The original simply has a white blood drop to indicate the third company. I decided that I'd add a supplementary small blood drop on either side of it, and a nameplate below, just to make this more personal to me.

 

In background terms, this is part of the appeal of the M35 setting: these 'non-canon' things that make these more personal to me are entirely accurate – because I'm making them up as I go :)

 

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So, there's Furiel 8:04. Hope you've enjoyed the ramblings – or at least the pictures!

 

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  • Brother Tyler, Brother Chaplain Kage, DuskRaider and 12 others like this

+Death of a Rubricist+

My blog

 

The Alien Wars – Blood Angels in the Nova Terra Interregnum | May You Live Forever – A narrative Iron Hands blog

Officio Monstrosa – Iron Warriors during the siege of Terra | The Praetors of Calth – Ultramarines from Crusade to Scouring


#23
Kordhal

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Fantastic work! I am really envious how you manage to achieve such a warm and vibrant feel to your miniatures, it really gives each one a sense of character! The background as usual is great, and really sets the scene for the armies theme. I look forward to seeing what you have planned next.


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#24
Calas Typhon

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Beautiful.



#25
Isengrin

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Now you've found the perfect balance between paying homage to 2nd Edition and keeping your distinct style visible. A splendid paint job. Nice work with the story, too!


Edited by Isengrin, 10 August 2017 - 02:58 PM.






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