Friday, 1 December 2017

A weaving of the threads

It's unlikely there's anyone out there who pays particularly close attention to this little ol' blog (anyone other than me that is). But if there was, they might be aware that in among all the jumping around between subject matter, a number of themes have started to arise.

One of the things I've talked about a lot is my fondness for huge great, scary-ass robots. This has been evident in my Miniature Giants series (the first few models of which can be found here, here and here) and also in my almost-complete Giant Robo Alphabot illustration project.*

Another notable theme could be my experimentation with oil paints to apply weathering to models. I now add a little rust or verdigris, in varying degrees, to almost every model I paint. The culmination of this would probably be these wrecked and abandoned cars, where I tried to make them look utterly devastated by painting them almost entirely with oils.

And finally, more recently, I've started adding to my Plague Marines. I bought a handful of troops many years ago, but only started working on them in earnest when the release of Dark Imperium rekindled my interest and turned my small, unpainted war-band into the beginnings of a serious force. My first completed Death Guard model, some kind of lieutenant, can be found here.

Hopefully, the pictures here make it fairly obvious why I'm I going on about all these previous projects. It's because these two new dreadnoughts neatly encapsulate a coming together of those previous three themes: Rusty Death Guard robots.

The idea for spider-noughts first struck me after I bought the Robogear boxset just over a decade ago. Robogear was Airfix's abortive attempt to tap into the wargaming market, and although most of the models in the starter set were not that great, some of the individual components were incredible. Especially at a time before Games Workshop's plastic range was as huge and all-encompassing as it is now.

In this case the mechanical, insectoid legs I used significantly pre-dated Games Workshop's Defiler and Onager kits, yet still managed to make me think they'd be great motive systems for Chaos dreadnoughts.

The rest of the bits were a mixture of Games Workshop parts (bought as individual components from Bitzbox), Forge World dreadnought arms (bought directly from them) and whatever doodads I had lying around from other kits – namely a spare weapon arm, the banners, skulls, censers, and a very live and well Space Marine, who, when combined with an old skeleton body became the much deader impaled marine you can see on the fire support variant (the one with the missile launcher and autocannon).

And then to top it all off, there were a few scratch-built pieces made from cocktail sticks and plastic tubing, and the two lovely, but somewhat hidden, helmets from Chapterhouse Studios.

So with these two newly finished miniatures I'm finally able to adjust my Addiction Challenge score. Hopefully I'll be knocking some more points off with the next post too. More to come...


*My obsession with these clanking monstrosities can probably be traced back to a childhood spent reading the comic 2000AD, back in the early 80s. Anyone who read that comic will remember the ABC Warriors, a group of artificial soldiers of fortune, designed to withstand Atomic, Biological and Chemical attack. They were led by Hammerstein, a humanoid, war robot veteran of the Volgan War, armed with a giant hammer, whose major appearances I've documented here.


  1. I really love your muted colours and gentle but effective rust. Those model afe wonderful. Perfectly sculpted and painted and almost everyone thinks that spider legs are creepy! However a bit of gore on that lovely impaled Space Marine... (just jocking, I'm a gore addict as you can see in my works, and I like joke about it)!

    However I feel an 80 before the end of the year!!!

    1. Thanks Stats. Kind words as ever. But 80 by the end of the year! You have too much faith in me. It's taken about 5 months just to get to 90. I think 88 might be more realistic. And yes, I love your gore. I was looking at your skeleton warriors earlier today. Some lovely work there. Especially the muck and random splotches. Very nice indeed. Maybe even enough to inspire me to paint some skellees of my own...

    2. Oh no, I've just checked. It's been nearly 6 months since I started the challenge. That's less than 1.5 miniatures a month!

  2. These models are spectacular! You have done a great job splicing together a lot of interesting pieces, particularly the legs. They seem like a natural extension of the dreadnoughts, not an easy feat. The muted and drab color scheme really works wonders here too!

    1. That's a lovely compliment Eric. Thank you so much. Especially coming from one of The Bolter And Me Boys. I'm so glad you like them. Even my best mate was a little unsure when he first saw them. Thanks again.