I’ve been feeling a little disconnected from the hobby and my fellow bloggers lately and I think it’s down to a few things.
1. The holiday I had. Being away from it all was kinda good but I did miss my hobby. It was like leaving a child behind haha.
2. Lost my glasses on the holiday so even when I was back I had to wait until my new glasses arrived.
3. I’ve been consumed by the new podcast project with my mate lately.
So what better way to reconnect than to pour myself a lovely scotch and get the paint brushes out aye?
I fell in love with Chaos Blood Reavers from Games Workshop a few years ago when they first came out. Really cool and savage looking and, in my opinion, very underrated. If you like Conan the barbarian, He-Man and pretty much any kind of scary barbarian-esque type stuff these should be your cup of tea.
Apparently they’re not very effective on the battlefield but, meh, I make my own rules anyway and the aesthetic appeal grabbed me straight away.
I started a project, back then, that I called The Blood Reapers (not reavers, that sounded too much like a cult dedicated to the worship of Keanu Reeves haha) that I haven’t really spoken about much on here.
The army is heavily based on the Blood Reavers but also includes other chaos units from GW like knights, marauders and also a few monsters. All have been built and base coated but that’s it.
Then, a little while ago, I discovered a board game and, more specifically, the MINIATURES for a game called HATE. Based off a series of graphic novels by Adrian Smith (similar style to Frank Miller’s style who did 300 and Sin City) the story tells of barbaric, cannibalistic and vicious tribes at war with one another in a world that has gone to shit. Needless to say, I had to have iiiiiiiiiit!
Adrian Smith has also done a lot of the art for Games Workshop over the years.
The trailer for the game is brilliant but, some say, a little controversial due to the level of coarse language and extreme violence. I say it’s a game for young adults and older so if it offends you go back to Snakes and Ladders and Operation… I love those games by the way. Buck-a-Roo was another great kids game and also KerPlunk haha. Brilliant.
The minis fit the overall look and vibe of my Blood Reapers army perfectly and so freaking menacing!!! So with a new injection of inspiration to get the army done, started at least, I began thinking about colour scheme. Right from the start I knew I wanted deathly pale skinned warriors and good portions of blood spattering but being so inspired by the graphic novels of HATE, of which I have the two current volumes, I decided to paint them in a “graphic novel scheme”. Basically in black, grey and white with splashes of realistic blood.
I did some research online and was not at all surprised to see that I wasn’t the first hobbyist to have this idea. I learnt that the style/effect is called chairoscuro, Italian for Light-Dark, which originated from the Renaissance period.
After some reading, pondering, procrastinating, (probably all done on the lavatory) and THEN the consumption of a couple of glasses of scotch I decided to jump in the deep end and just make a start.
I just want to say that these miniatures are, without a doubt, the best quality miniatures I’ve ever seen and painted. The details are crisp and just stunning. There were next to no mould lines or flash. The size and weight is impressive and the over all design and stance of these man-toys are absolutely awesome. Hard not to compare but in my opinion they’re better than GW miniatures in every way. Which is huge for me as GW minis are my favourite.
Even though the comic book look I was going for is a relatively simple idea the palette wasn’t so simple. Basically I used black and white and three or four grey tones in between. I also used a good dose of nuln oil wash and blood for the blood god from GW.
I found the painting to be fun but challenging to find the right greys for the right details. I was going to use some metal paint to edge the metal armour and weapon but in the end I think you can tell what’s what anyway.
First I’d like to show you some of the incredible and bone chilling artwork from The Chronicles of Hate. Not an overly wordy graphic novel but awesome all the same. I highly recommend it to those of you who are into books and/or comics/graphic novels.
Awesome stuff huh?
Now, without further ado, here is the first mini in grayscale with splashes of blood. Note the background.
I’m so happy with how they’ve turned out.
Just to show off the enormity of these brutes here’s what one of them looks like standing next to a very nervous standard imperial guardsman.
Even though the HATE Miniature is standing on a slightly raised base you can still tell he towers over the puny human haha.
I really, really, REALLY enjoyed painting this amazing miniature and look forward to painting all the others. Especially the ones that are as big and even bigger than this bad boy.
The rest of the, massive, Blood Reaper Army will not be in just black and white. The white skin will remain though and there will be blood… oh yes there will be blood. Even though I enjoyed the basic colour scheme/concept I actually did miss using a wider variety of colours.
I hope you like what I’ve done.
Remember, Grace Jones in Conan The Barbarian (or was it the destroyer). She was savage!