Wednesday, October 9, 2013

WIP: 2,000pt Tau Army - September recap

I set a pretty high goal for myself, and September came and went. Did I complete everything I said I would? Pics and words after the jump!

Month two of my "Mega-Painter" project, inspired by "Mega Painters" on the Tale of Painters Blog!

As outlined in my previous WIP post, I completed a team of 12 fire warriors and Cadre Fireblade in August, to begin my 2,000pt Tau Army. At the end of that post, I set a lofty goal of finishing another 12 fire warriors AND all 6 stealth warriors from both battleforces in September. Let's see how I did.

I began with the stealth warriors. Frankly, I wasn't looking forward to building another 12 man fireteam.  I don't like to repeat hobby projects - a year of working on Tyranids has really burnt me out on duplicate models, and one of the reasons I chose the Tau and purchased the kits I did, was to avoid repetition. Above, you can see the stealth suit torsos and burst cannons removed from the sprue and cleaned. The models fit together very well, and sitting over night with a good clamp on each of them insured a tight, seamless fit. (note the stack of drones in the background. 22 total from both battleforces. some day I'll get around to those...)

Here are the finished stealth warriors. I can't express how pleased I am with how they turned out. I was encouraged by how the white and red color scheme worked on the fire warriors, but it really shines on these guys. Most of the official images of these models are painted in a very dark pallet, and all the details are completely lost - there's so much more detail in the legs and backs of these models than I originally thought. Once again, a black oil wash works its magic, popping every little nook and detail into stark relief.

If you want to up your painting game, leave the GW ink washes behind and move to using an oil wash. You won't believe the difference. It's so much easier and faster, it feels like cheating. You can find a fantastic tutorial on oil washes on the BUY PAINTED channel of youtube. Trust me on this. Night and Day.

No putting it off any longer; time for fire warriors. Thankfully, these guys have a lot more customizability (is that even a word?) than the termigants and hormigants do, and posing them was a lot of fun. I always paint in the assembly line style, so everything is done in stages. It can be a little discouraging, because for a long period, it doesn't feel like you're accomplishing anything - but then, right at the end, all 12 guys come together at once, and suddenly you have an entire squad complete in a single shot. Great feeling.

Look closely at the pulse rifles and helmets. Yes, I masked off and airbrushed the red areas on every one of them. Yes, I am an obsessive-compulsive completest. And yes, it took longer to do those two things than paint everything else that had to be done on the squad.

Here's the completed fireteam. Note the marking on the helmets to differentiate them from the previous squad. Less battle wear too. Maybe these guys are noobs. Only one "kneeler" this time, and I worked in a "grenade guy" for variety. We make these guys, but they're always the ones we put in the front to be first casualties. Poor "grenade guys". The Sargent (the Sha's-omething or other - man, I gotta read my codex) has a scanner this time to make him different than the previous model.

And here's a shot of everything I've painted thus far. Two, 12 man fireteams, six stealth warriors and Cadre Fireblade. Not a bad start for 2 months worth of work - and a great little allied detachment to help me learn their rules.

NEXT MONTH: I'm going to paint the two Piranha that came in the battleforces. BUT, I have to be honest, between my upcoming vacation to Europe and GTA V, I don't think that's gonna happen...

Are you working on a "Mega Project"? Painting a battleforce? Share in the comments below!


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