Friday, 29 November 2013

Mars Attacks

I don't and can't consider myself an artist. I'm deeply far too pragmatic and though I have some imagination, it's always tuned down by my scientific side.
Why do I say that ? Well, because I realise I always tend to stick to "realistic" treatment in my painting style (if I have such a thing). My artictic side though is visible through the trends I have and right now I'm in a red era. Since painting a chaos warrior in red In June, I've been putting red everywhere and I'm liking it a lot.
I've even been given the opportunity to work on this by a fellow oldhammerer on the forum who proposed me to paint something for him (whose blog can be found here).

I have to say that seeing a Bob Olley Techmarine was quite a surprise. I've had mixed feelings about his models for a long time and I've lately come to realise that these models have to be painted to be appreciated. I really believe you only truly know a model once you've painted.

Bob Olley's oldschool models always tend to have one of these points :
- they have weird textures you never truly know how to paint
- they lack flat areas
- Clothes always have an infinite amount of waves
- eyes are often hollowed
- you get organic shapes everywhere you never truly understand
- they are insanely detailed

So getting started with them is always kind of weird for me.

I started knowing these could be a tough job.

The only thing asked by the owner was to make it bright so I decided to give the armour a bright red to start with and to see for the rest afterwards. (Oh and did I mention how awesome the grey priming proved to be? I'll develop that later)

WIP with base coulours

The magic happend when I decided not to care about the textures and just apply the base colours where I wanted them. Once I did that, I realised the way to paint them came as an evidence, the texture on the legs just needed some drybrush, the stripes on the higher part of the legs just needed to be painted in different colours and so on...

Another thing I didn't know was how to paint the weapon. The very simple answer I chose was to paint a part of it of any colour used on the main body so that every colour painted on the guy could be found on the weapon as well.

For the ground, I wanted a retro feel but wanted to show the martian origin. I opted for a brown to redish orange soil. Though the difference between soil and armour is not clearly visible on the photos, I find it better on the actual model. I added a black part to have a clear definition betwen the soil and armour too.

 The last thing I added were the golden parts which I painted in brass with little highlights to keep them not too shiny. I just wante dto keep the steel part to the bare minimum and for the blade only.

I considered doing some OSL with glowing parts but I was already happy with the general look and idn't want to do too much. I have to admit I kinda rushed on the last details because I wnated to finish it as soon as possible because (1) I wanted to see it done since I had fallen in love with it (2) I didn't want for the original owner to wait too long. I hope he'll forget me about this.

The blue details really hep to get a good contrast I think and I'm happy to have done them this way. The eye lenses had to be painted green since red had already been taken for the armour and blue for the details (see, how pragmatic...).

2 things I learnt in this process :
- If you don't know how to paint a part, then just paint the rest and the solution will come by itself
- Light cadmium red is my favourite colour to highlight red. I've been looking for the proper colour to work on reds for a long time, I f only I could find the same thing to work on yellows...

Anyway, hope you like it and hope the owner is able to take better pictures than I could just before moving home...

Now I'm eager to work on my Iron claw pirates to see how they turn ...

(EDITED with better pics)


  1. Oh man, this is insanely beautiful!

  2. Great choice of colours and great execution too. Really does the model justice, well done.

    1. Well, painting for someone comes with 2 things :
      - you don't necesseraly get to paint what you would normally have painted and going out of the comfort zone is always a good thing to improve
      - you try to spend some extra time to get a decent result (even though I rushed at the end)

      One good thing too is that I got to understand this is actually a MK6 tech-marine. I used to believe it was just some regular admech.

      Thanks Paul.

  3. version très originale et très sympathique... j'aime bien ce parti pris pour une couleur très vive qui en général n'est pas de mise avec le mechanicus... ça donne envie de peindre la mienne... mais d'abord, j'ai un squat et des choses plus récentes à peindre ;)

  4. Merci, j'aurai pu tomber dans du plus classique mais le proprio voulait que ça claque, après mettre de l'os et peu d'acier c'était plus pour le délire perso mais ça paie je trouve. franchement agréable et rapide à peindre

  5. Excellent job on this figure. I like your thought process for coming up with the color scheme and how to paint the detail.

    1. Well it's the only way I'm able to work so thanks !

  6. Looking fantastic as always. Was the red shaded with a bit of red ink?

    I am less keen on the base rim colour but it works it juts seems odd to me I would use black or maybe hull red.

    1. The red is build starting with a very dark red (the old fondation reference whose name I can't remember) and blended to cadmium red on the edges. There was just a thin inkwash of black in the recesses.
      Reading your comment I realise I painted the baserim grey just like for my other Rogue trader models when this model was not meant to be played by me or with any of my models...
      I use grey on my chaos renegades to enhance the fact they're black (it makes them look darker). Maybe for the admecjh it was not the best choice but I think its has an oldschool vibe and it also gives a slight "steel" vibe.
      Going full red on a model even on the base rim can be a very good idea. I do own the hooded Bob Olley Admech so maybe I can try something in this vein...
      Thanks for the comments !


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