Wednesday, December 29, 2021

The Snail, the Crane and the Frog

Hi All!

I've made the sub-light hop from Caprica to land on picturesque Arda, the planet of high fantasy and all this LotR. I've been looking forward to this as I've been in a sort of all-things-fantasy mood this past year, being quite taken by the game 'Moonstone', and preparing several 10mm Warhammer Fantasy forces for 'Monsters and Magic' (M2), the fantasy version of 'To the Strongest'.

Anyway, a few weeks ago I was cruising around on MyMinFactory and came across this brilliant digital sculptor who goes by the handle 'CobraMode'. His/Her designs are incredible, exhibiting such a unique and whimsical vision. The overall aesthetic is a mystical medieval Asia, but with the twist of having anthropomorphic creatures as the primary characters - I find it's all very cool. Suitable impressed, I plumped down for several of the print files (okay, a lot of the print files). 

This little tryptic sets the scene of a Feixian sword-for-hire, travelling with his loyal pack-snail (squire?). They have made it to the outskirts of the Great Mushroom Forest when they are met on the road by a Hikiga swordsman baring their way. The Crane swordsman, sensing this is no simple highwayman, leaps from his faithful steed to attack. The Fog Ogre (Fogre?) takes up his 'stone pose', his petal-blade poised to meet the Feixian's aggressive approach...

I had a lot of fun working on all of these models as they're so characterful. Being a fantastical creatures, I just opened up a bunch of paint pots and sort of went wild.

The Pack-Snail is a hoot and is absolutely festooned with adventuring gear. 

If you look closely, in amongst all the baggage, you can see a sock drying on a line, a pot of soup being rudely jostled, and a rooster(?!) precariously teetering on his nest. 

I used various blends of contrast paint for his shell (btw Contrast Medium is awesome for colourshift blending) and, thinking him as a helpful creature, I added a Moorish target shield to his 'hand' (propodium?) which he's offering to his liege. 

I did up the Fexian swordsman in colourful layered robes that you would see in any Chinatown festival. As his pose is quite busy, I had to paint him while in his individual parts and assemble later. 

He's such a delicate figure that I'm rather dubious of his survivability on the tabletop. Oh well, such is the life of a Crane swordsman.

The huge Hikiga swordsman looks like a cross between a Maori warrior and a salamander. I decided to make him largely turquoise with trippy sigil-tattoos across his belly and circling his biceps. 

I had fun painting on the flower petals on his 'uge honkin' blade and doing his doo in a pink to azure blue fade. Kids these days.

All of these models are fairly large at around 54mm. The Snail and the Hikiga were one-piece prints, but the Feixian swordsman comes as five pieces and is quite complex to arrange in his leaping pose. I had to carefully drill out one of his legs to pin it to the base for stability (which I later camouflaged with the flowering shrub). 

Hmm. Not sure what I'm doing next, so we'll see where the star lanes take us...

Thanks for dropping in for a look - have a great day!

- Curt