Monday, December 13, 2010

Twas Brillig...

 Hey folks, welcome to another instalment of Julie/Julia.  This week we take a break from cooking french cuisine and instead focus on old miniature painting.
  Since I started this blog I have fallen in love with restoring these really old figures- the uglier the better.  I have an Asgard she-ogre on the go which is probably the ugliest model ever made- and I am having a lovely time trying to make the paint job sell her as art.  Tough job, as you may see soon.  But kicking off this episode is...

FS6-3 Dungeon Torturess variant
Yes, the brilliantly politically incorrect FS Torture set by citadel featured naked women wot are being tortured like.  Lots of proud giggling tweens in the eighties had these.  Pre-internet we had to get our boobie fix elsewhere.  I think it was either Lee Chinnery or Gareth Parrys elder brother (hello!)  who showed me his 'naked girl on a cross' model back in 1989, and I was instantly hooked on the idea.  Sadly, I missed the boat, as by then Citadel where more politically correct and the figures impossible to find.  I had to wait till I had grey hair to start buying them up- they are very expensive and highly sought collectors items now.  Dammit.

   Less collectable and far less rare seems to be this variant of the whip mistress- from the Fantasy Specials line.  You can frequently snap her up for a couple of bucks from evil-bay.
  One word of advice, with all miniatures from this era you will find the surface very uneven.  A couple of brushes full of watered down Milliput grey-green and a quick sand makes all the difference.  I left the weapon and shield pitted for effect, but you can see just how rough the surface was all over.
  She got a lick of Vallejo model colour paints using thinned layers of model color matte medium tinted with the highlight colors of red, purple and flesh.  I gave her a more Mediterranean skin tone, as she seemed to step straight out of a harem in some Conan adventure.  I glazed a little green into the recesses too.
  Its hard to make out in the photo, but I sculpted a snake slithering on her base between her legs-  this gave an element of Orientalism and danger.  Of course, the between the legs thing is also a metaphor.  I too was an adolescent boy once.

Now, burbling as it came, is the C29 Jabberwock with eyes aflame.  This Lewis Carol homage hailed from the Spring 1985 Citadel Journal.  I have wondered about this figure since I saw his head poking out a moat, devouring zombies in John Blanches fantastic undead diorama.  Getting hold of one was an exciting day for me.  I know, I know.  Sad bastards, line on the left.  Owners of the original Warhammer Fantasy Role Play can find this chap in the bestiary section.  He seemed to be discontinued by the time the 1989 catalog appeared.  I hear rumour there is a standing one too, but have not encountered it.  Probably the Ral Partha one.

I had an hour to spare last night, so knocked this guy out really quickly- simple yellow-green matte medium tinted glazes over a catachan green base, followed by really thin red and turquoise glazes for variety.  The photo doesnt catch the contrast in the yellows sadly- he really pops in real life.  I may sculpt some stuff on his base later on... such as a sign pointing to Tulgey woods or a few gilliam-esque severed limbs.

C29 Young Dragon 'Jabberwock'
Now a confession.  I know I have been promising to finish that monster starter set, but I have been dragging my heels over the Dark Elf.  I don't know why, but I just dislike citadel Dark Elves- especially when they are painted purples and blues.  GURPS Illustrator and awesome Artist Simon Lissaman painted me a great dark elf female for my 21st birthday, and he went with a pale flesh skin tone and green clothes- it looked great- sort of an edgy elf.  However I am torn- since its a classic set, should I go with the classic look... hmmm?

Answers on a postcard... or alternatively, in the comments section below.

Next episode...  more stuff.


  1. first - lucky bastard! I've been looking for that jabbewock for ages :(

    As for the dark elf - I vote for the good look... anybody can paint it like it was looking back then, the treat (?) is to make it look good :)

  2. That same diorama got me wanting a Jabberwock too - brillig indeed!

    Torturess is cool too - Sinbad gone very wrong!

    I remember (a long time ago) painting my Dark Elf crossbows from the Warhammer Regiments box set blue and purple and being somewhat diissatisfied with them - a similar colour scheme to the torturess would look suitably sinister...

  3. Wrong Sinbad would be a great film.

    I had a crack at him last night- and went with pale flesh skin, bone white armour, gold trims and Elric albino red eyes in the end.
    Basically I did a George from Seinfeld and went with the complete opposite of what I would normally do.
    Only the hobgoblin and finishing touches to go now.