I?m writing this as I sit at my desk, recovering from the sweltering scrum that was the Forge World open day. As ever, it was great to meet so many enthusiastic hobbyists and chat about everything we?re working on (well? maybe not everything), but now that it?s over I feel like I can breathe a big sigh of relief. Not because I wasn?t looking forward to it, but because it was the deadline for our team?s hobby challenge!
The three of us have recently started new forces for The Horus Heresy, and we?ve made a gentlemen?s agreement to paint a new unit in time for each event we attend. I joined too late to paint anything up for Warhammer Fest, but I was dead keen to get a unit done for the Open Day. As this was to be the first unit in my army I underwent a week or two of soul-searching before settling on Iron Warriors as my legion of choice. I?ve never felt entirely comfortable painting metallic colours, so I thought I?d take the chance to step out of my comfort zone (which pretty much amounts to ?paint it red!?).
Setting aside notions of gun-toting dreadnoughts, siege artillery and honking great tanks, I decided to start by eating my greens and painting a ten-man Legion Tactical Squad. MkIII Iron Armour was a no brainer, as was the addition of some legion-specific bits and pieces to add some Iron Warriors flair. When it came to equipping the sergeant I had a rummage in the bitz box, kitting him out with a power fist that I?d kept from the days of second edition Warhammer 40,000 ? if there was ever a place to break out the old-school cool, it?s a heresy-era army. I also found a spare plastic Librarian head (left over after I converted a Wolf Priest for my 40k Space Wolves), and I thought the psychic hood would be a nice echo of Perturabo?s crown of cables.
Iron Warriors have got a fairly straight-forward colour scheme, but I ended up embellishing a bit and adding more gold than I?d originally intended. This came about because I couldn?t shake the notion that the squad looked a bit unfinished with so much silver and not much else going on. I tend to trust my gut on stuff like this; I?ve never been a natural painter, and my technical work is sloppy as anything, but I?ve always found that thinking about the composition of a miniature (where the colours go, how they interact and so forth) can overcome a million brush-based sins.
Painting the squad was pretty straightforward, although it definitely took longer than was expecting. Starting from a Leadbelcher spray basecoat, I gave the silver areas a coat of Nuln Oil gloss, then an edge highlight with Stormhost Silver. The gold was done in a very similar fashion: Retributor Armour, Seraphim Sepia and Liberator Gold, the latter of which might be the best gold paint we?ve ever done. Aside from this, I painted the black bits with Abaddon Black, then applied a highlight of Eshin Grey, and finally added some red (nothing more than Khorne Red with a Nuln Oil shade) to the cabling.
Because Iron Warriors are a bit monochromatic, I wanted to add some colour with the bases, hence the red slate! I think an interesting base can really make your models stand out on the battlefield, and hides any sins that make it past your composition. I actually tend to paint my bases first, partially so that I don?t ruin any of the rest of the model while drybrushing, but more importantly because it makes them already look half-finished, which is a great motivational tool.
So there we go: Squad Uriax, ready to go and tear down some fortresses, or, at least, scout out some fortresses so the big guns can tear them down. The only thing I have to do now is work out what to paint next…
Posted by James
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