Sunday, 24 March 2019

Monster March - Week 3, Shadowsword Complete!

I finished the Shadowsword with time to spare. It still feels like it took long enough though. There's just something about painting tanks, even when you do it quickly. At some point I always come to the realisation that I'm basically painting a house brick with added relief!

Overall, I'm really happy with how the Steel Panther came out. It's actually the first Super Heavy that I've painted for any of my armies, so that's cool too. I'm not sure how much I'll use it in game, as I like to play smaller games mostly, but having it finished certainly fulfils a childhood dream or two. 

Although painting started to feel a bit arduous towards the end, I find with tanks that they really come alive when you start highlighting all the metals and adding the last weathering touches, as it really blends it all in nicely. Using the airbrush was a real life-saver too, or I'd probably still be sitting there base coating the thing. I honestly wouldn't paint a vehicle without it these days. Not to say that an airbrush will all the work, but once you get your techniques down, it can be a real time saver for highlighting, cammo patters and smooth application.

The finished Shadowsword in my display cabinet

Other than the tank, I've built, undercoated and airbrushed the chaos half of Shadowspear as well, so expect to see some units from the set turning up on the blog soon.

With one week to spare till the end of Monster March, I'll have to think of something to do with my newly completed super-heavy for the final update...

Friday, 15 March 2019

Monster March - Week 2, Shadowsword Progress

Work has been continuing at a good pace on the Shadowsword. I finished washing around all of the rivets and other details and did the light drybrush highlight on the whole tank. After I'd finished that stage, I started the laborious process of picking out the details.

Most of the detail parts are still just basecoated at the moment, and I really have a long way to go with them.

In order to get a bit more finish on the tank, and to get an idea where I was going with it, I also added decals to it. I always enjoy that stage a lot, so I couldn't resist. I free-handed a name for the tank on the side of it; the "Steel Panther", and before anyone asks, it is an intentional joke reference to the American comedy glam rock/metal band.

"Become the king of your neighbourhood, like Steel Panther, and Tiger Woods..."

If anyone's interested in how we got to this stage, I did a full step by step tutorial for how I paint my Steel Legion tanks, so if you haven't read it already, it's available here (Link)

That about rounds it up. I'm hoping to blast the rest of the tank out pretty fast now, as I've ordered a copy of Shadowspear, and as an avid Chaos player, I'm hoping to have plenty of time to spend on the goodies within!

Saturday, 9 March 2019

Monster March - Week 1, Shadowsword

Following on from my pledge for Monster March, I've been hard at work painting my Shadowsword. This is pretty much where we're at after one week:

Despite looking almost finished to the casual observer, there's still a long way to go. Basically, progress so far was all done with the airbrush, so in terms of time spent, we're looking at maybe 2 hours of work.

The new thing I tried was masking the tracks off so I could spray them silver. I absolutely hate painting tracks with a brush, so I'm really happy that it worked out well.

Other than the airbrush work, I've started the painstaking process of washing all the rivets and gaps with Agrax. It takes a long time, but is well worth the effort, and it has already added a lot of depth to the model.

Once I finish that stage, it's on to highlighting and then the bodywork will be complete. Hopefully I can get that done by next week - giving me the remaining 2 weeks to do all the detail work!

Monday, 4 March 2019

Blackstone Fortress - Traitor Guard, Slaanesh Cultist Unit

When Blackstone Fortress came out, I was immediately taken by some of the new chaos models, but I didn't want to fork out for a whole set. I also wanted to be able to integrate the minis into my force right away without having to use the odd little data sheets that were made for them for 40k.

With that in mind, I picked up a set of the Traitor Guard models on eBay and converted them for use as an ordinary cultist squad. I used a few standard plastic cultists to fill the gaps and also did a few head swaps here and there to get them all to match nicely.

I'm particularly fond of the head swap on their leader, which was pretty simple with some spare Mechanicus infiltrator bits. The models themselves had great detail, so I didn't want to change them too much.

I've painted them to match the rest of my Emperor's Children force, but I swapped the colours around and gave them white/bone colour armour and purple fatigues (as opposed to the usual Emperor's Children purple armour). They still match the force nicely, but it helps them look a little different, and it was quite fun to paint. I've actually built a second unit with hand to hand combat weapons, but I'm planning to paint them later, as finishing this unit was enough for the moment.

Friday, 1 March 2019

Monster March 2019 - Steel Legion Shadowsword Pledge

I'm taking part in Monster March this year, which is being run by Swordmaster over at Path of an Outcast (

The event is quite simple in premise, paint something big and scary during the month of March and follow along with your fellow entrants. For me, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to try to paint up the Shadowsword that I bought for my Steel Legion force. I think it should be quite manageable using my tank painting technique, as described in my Steel Legion Tutorial. So hopefully it should look something like my other tanks when it's done:

It's always been a bit of a dream of mine to have a fully painted Shadowsword for 40k. I think it all started when I was a kid and games of Epic were always being shown in White Dwarf. It just seemed so exciting, and I couldn't help but want a full size one. In particular the Shadowsword always had a sort of mystique to it for me; being the one that mounted the biggest gun!

Anyway, that's the pledge, so check back later to see how I get on!