My style of painting has changed over the past 30
years and my collection of Orc and Goblin armies do show their age. I decided
to refurbish the collection and this is no small task as the collection is
quite large. The figures are all metal Citadel/Games Workshop and Shadow Corps miniatures
which are based as 15mm despite the figures being a standard 25mm.
As you can see from the ‘before’ photos, these were painted in the fashion colour of the
time and to protect them were given a coat of high gloss varnish. One could
almost describe the technique as ‘splash and dash’ as these took relatively
little time to paint up.
The mounted arm of this collection are Snotlings (now
Goblin) mounted on Necromunda rats and these you will see these based as light
horse (LH), cavalry (Cv) and chariot (LCh) elements. Actual armoured Goblin
figures, also mounted on Necromunda rats, form the elite element or knight
class (3Kn) and can be seen on their larger bases (40mm x 40mm).
To make this task less arduous, I will paint them 12
elements at time. As a first step toward their restoration, I sprayed these
with a matte varnish which did produce a subtle change but not enough that I
would say – ‘done’.
After considerable research I decided to follow the
description of the Orc skin colour as given by Tolkien in his novels. My first
batch of twelve is nearly done and I am pleased with the result so far. Photos
of ‘after’ should be uploaded either
tomorrow or Friday.
The first Orc/Goblin command is complete with a second
command close on its heels (nr. 2 is also complete).
The base colour for these is Angrellan Earth
followed by a wash of Athonian Camoshade with Nurgling Green used
for highlighting. From my reading, this comes close to the description of
‘sallow-skinned’ Orc as given by Tolkien in his books; this can also vary from
a dirty gray, dirty yellow or cream colour.
Weapons and metal items are painted a dark gray and highlighted with a mix of
light blue/mid-gray. The effect is nice as most of the figures have chainmail
armour. All leather equipment is painted in various shades of brown, red-brown.
I am pleased with the results so far, they certainly look menacing more so than the original colour scheme. More
photos will follow as the restoration progresses, but next post will list an
inventory of the collection to give readers an idea of the project size.
Command numbers 4 and 5 comprise of both heavy and light mounted
troop types each supported by a small contingent of bowmen These offered an opportunity
to experiment with skin tone variation by simply changing the highlighting
colour; unfortunately this cannot be seen well in the photo. The Necromunda rats required very little work needing only some extra detailing.
I am fast approaching the half way mark as there are
11 commands and not thirteen as originally tallied; two commands comprise of horde
which count as half of normal value. Each command of horde therefore requires
twice as many elements to complete; both have a horde
general. These are next on the 'to do' list.
Two Goblin hordes are now complete (commands 6 &
7). Each comprise of 16 horde elements supported by two behemoths, either Stone
Trolls or Pump Wagons. At first glance, I was hesitant to do these as they
total 80 smaller figures (17/18mm) which all require the same amount of
attention as their larger brethren. Rather than apply an earth colour as a base
coat I skipped that step and brushed Anthonian Camoshade over the original
green. This created enough of a contrast that I could use Nurgle Green to
highlight the figure, which worked well. Weapons and clothing were painted in a
similar fashion as all the other groups.
If you have the 1993 publication of Warhammer Armies,
Orcs and Goblins, you may remember Stone
Trolls were painted with a medium to light blue colour. In keeping with the
general theme of this project, these too were painted darker then dry brushed
with lighter shades of gray and just a touch of light blue. The end result turned
out much better in my opinion.
The Pump Wagons
followed a similar treatment with wood items ‘washed’ with a deeper red-brown and
crew figures were painted in a similar style as described above. Metal fittings
were painted and highlighted in a similar manner as the rest of the collection.
Commands 8 and 9 are modelled after the ancient Classical
Indian list which include elephants, chariots, cavalry and archers. Here, giant
boars with howdah replace the elephants and Orc warriors replace the Maiden
Guard of an earlier DBA list and both commands are stiffened with a good number
of archers and chariot.
Command number 10 was also completed over the weekend and
this contains a mix of mounted, Orc warriors and a few archers. This leaves the
artillery, Squiggs, horde and the last three chariot models to make an enlarged
command number 11.
The final command is finished and now joins the other
10 in their storage boxes. The Goblins are always fun to do (former Snotlings)
while the chariots offered the greater challenge with tight spots that needed
painting. The Squiggs were darkened and their teeth are not as pristine white
as before, yet still retain a fierce appearance. The artillery pieces were
painted a wood colour and a similar treatment was done to the palisade.
This took less than three weeks to complete with each
day no more than an hour or two required for painting, texturing bases and
11 x Goblin Chariots (LCh)
24 x Orc warriors (3Bd or 3Wb)
6 x Skirmishers, Lurkers (Ps)
This brings the grand total to 171 elements or more than thirteen commands.
NB. (Beh) Behemoth
Goblin-Orc Parade Review
vanguard are the chariots (LCh) and skirmishing mounted goblins (LH), closely
followed by the main body.
central column of the main body are Orc warriors (3Wb, 3Bd) with Orc bowmen (3Bw)
marching to their front and rear. On the flanks of the central column can be
seen the Goblin horde (5Hd) in standard march discipline accompanied by trolls
the rear of the army are the pump wagons, bolt shooters, Goblins mounted on
large wild boar (El) and Squigg (SCh).
right of the column are two formations of heavy mounted Orcs; in the foreground
are the “cavalry” (Cv) and to their rear behind the Angry Sun banner are the
Big Boyz (3Kn).
way to an Elven banquet.