Rotting Ways

Way back in the mists of time, one of the first squads I started to build for the Beasts of Ruin was my plague marines, led by Golothess the Befouled.
I still love old Golothess but I’m not too proud to admit that the rest of the squad are showing their age a bit (check them out here if you don’t believe me). Nurgle provides a great opportunity to learn with greenstuff, and ugly results can still look alright on ugly models, but still, none of these guys really wow me now. Over the years I’ve added a few new recruits here and there which, I think, improve the quality of the squad overall. Then this guy came along and shook everything up.
I know I should be all modest but I really like him. The problem is he’s a little bit bigger than his mates.
Now that’s not the end of the world, chaos ought to be chaotic as I’m forever saying. However having made him I found myself wanting to make some more. I decided to give him a home in a new squad (expect a few WIP pics soon), and call Golothess’ Acolytes finished, at least for now. Before they could step, shamble and crawl into graceful completion however there was one more model to finish off – this bearer of the icon of despair.

Rather pleased with him, especially the banner, and he’s given me lots of inspiration for the forthcoming second squad. As always any thoughts, feedback or, especially, inspirational ideas for squad number two, are welcome in the comments box.

Of course, it wouldn’t be right to wrap up the story of Golothess and his acolytes without a final group shot.

And here they are, leading the march of Nurgle’s beloved children in the quest to contaminate the universe. Let the galaxy rot!

6 responses to “Rotting Ways

  • beastofmanyshapes

    Really enjoy looking at your work. These guys are great. I would love to attempt this style but my mind cant comprehend where to start. Any top tips?

    • Wudugast

      Hmmmm… I’ll do my best but to be honest this is just how I paint, I didn’t set out to learn how to paint like this, I just set out to learn how to paint and this is the result. Looking back over the squad I actually see a real evolution and change over time. Golothess for example was painted at a time when I used a lot more orange in my rust painting, and there was some kind of weird turquoise gunk leaking out of the seams of his armour (at one time everyone I painted had that – then for some reason I stopped. No idea now why I started or why I changed my mind). The ‘tall marine’ dates back to when I first started to learn how to use washes, and then the new standard bearer uses loads of washes

      Actually using washes is a big part of the answer to your question. On the surface it sounds very simple; block in the base colours, then give it a wash or two to add dimension, then add highlights. First time I saw that (in a John Blanche article in White Dwarf if I recall correctly) I thought it must be witchcraft. First few times I tried it I knew it was witchcraft – I simply couldn’t make it work. Now I use it all the time – in fact with this standard bearer I wanted to experiment and see how much I could do just using washes. If it would be helpful I could probably work out most of the colours I used?

      The other thing I do a lot of is drybrushing, especially on soft/organic materials like cloth, hair, etc. Both of these techniques are pretty messy though so taking a bit of care to tidy up the paintjob at the end and adding a few carefully painted details really helps pull it all together.

      I would say though, your painting style is cracking, very much neater and sharper than I could aspire to be, so keep up the good work 🙂

  • beastofmanyshapes

    I really appreciate the time you took to reply so thoroughly. I can see the evolution in the squad but they all stand individually.

    The mid-tone, shade then highlight is how I work as well although I tend not to dry brush very much. I think the colour palette is a big factor but I couldn’t ask you to recall all the colours used! I think your style is extremely evocative to me as is John’s work (Art and miniatures). Like I said in an earlier comment, it is 40k to me.

    With regards to my style, it is a bit of a love/hate affair. I am a perfectionist and dislike my work if I think I could have done better……seriously the models in my blog are the only ones in 2/3 years I haven’t given a Dettol bath or chucked :S

    Thanks again and keep doing what your doing!

    • Wudugast

      No worries, I live in a very remote location and most of my neighbours are sheep/sheep farmers so it’s always nice to talk about the hobby to someone 🙂

      On the subject of perfectionism my partner, who is a professional artist and illustrator (shameless plug: ) gave me a really good piece of advice. She said something along the lines of ‘Of course I’m never 100% happy with anything I produce. If I waited until I was I’d never finish a single commission. But that doesn’t mean I don’t produce things I’m proud of’. That really nailed it for me, I’m never 100% happy with any of the miniatures I paint but I’m still proud of them, and I use the flaws I see as the impetus to push myself, to try out new things so that next time I’m a little better.

      Another thing I’ve done to help overcome my own perfectionism is a kind of ‘sketching’ – just picking up a model, setting a deadline (e.g. I’m painting this guy this evening) and then just getting on with it. It’s surprisingly liberating!

  • Alex

    I love these guys – Golothess rocks, as does the icon bearer! Sure, the scale is a bit up and down, but it’ll be unnoticeable if the big’uns and little’uns are in separate squads. You can always re-base the little’uns and build up the scenics a bit to get them to the same height if you’re really bothered? Or… just say to hell with scale and go really large with some conversions based on the Blightkings? Whatever you do, I am sure it will be stunning 🙂

    • Wudugast

      Cheers! Well at the moment I’m thinking one squad of ‘little ‘uns’, one squad of ‘big ‘uns’ (really the whole thing is just an excuse to make a second squad) and a squad of Chosen based on the Blightkings. I think the scale issue is only really noticeable because they’re all in the same squad – once I split them up it shouldn’t really be apparent.

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