There’s A Guy Works Down The Chipshop Swears He’s Elvish

I spent some of the weekend working on something a world away from the blood-thirsty savagery of the Daughters of Khaine, but still distinctly violent and elvish – my Elven Union Blood Bowl team. Readers may remember that back in December I dipped my toe into starting an elf team (after claiming I’d paint a human team to follow up my Orcs – something I’ve still done naff all about). I’d come up with the idea of putting heads from the Warhammer 40k Harlequins onto the bodies of Blood Bowl elves some time ago, and even built a few of them, but it wasn’t until December that I found a colour scheme I really liked. Here’s a reminder of how the two test models look.

Blood Bowl Wudugast ConvertOrDie Elves

I’ve been keen to get back to the rest of the team ever since so, when I started looking out models for Fembruary, I took the opportunity to dig through the elves I’d built and check if any of them were female (there’s probably a joke in there about it being hard to tell with elves…). Turns out three of them were so I started chipping away at them through January, whenever I felt like a change from working on the Tzeentchian cult that was preoccupying my mind at that time, and once Fembruary rolled around I knuckled down properly and got them all finished. Looking at them now I realise they actually show something of an evolution of the team concept (if that doesn’t sound too pretentious!). This one is built straight out of the box, with no converting whatsoever.

Blood Bowl Elves Wudugast ConvertOrDie (1)Blood Bowl Elves Wudugast ConvertOrDie (2)

This one is a straightforward head-swap, much like the two boys I showed previously.

Blood Bowl Elves Wudugast ConvertOrDie (3)Blood Bowl Elves Wudugast ConvertOrDie (4)Blood Bowl Elves Wudugast ConvertOrDie (5)

And this one is where things got a bit strange and scary, a reminder that elves don’t just waft around being poetic and melancholic, they also curdle milk and steal children. Getting that mask to fit was a right nightmare too I can tell you!

Blood Bowl Elves Wudugast ConvertOrDie (6)Blood Bowl Elves Wudugast ConvertOrDie (7)Blood Bowl Elves Wudugast ConvertOrDie (8)Blood Bowl Elves Wudugast ConvertOrDie (9)

Anyway, with these ladies ready to take to the pitch the team is already almost half done.

Blood Bowl Elves Wudugast ConvertOrDie (10)

Usually this is the point in a project where I’d starting thinking about focussing and trying to get the whole set completed, but at the moment there’s only a couple more that are built (and they’re both boys so won’t be getting touched this month). I’ll keep chipping away at them though, and we’ll see how it goes. For now though, it’s time to dig around in the pile of neglected models and see what I feel like tackling next.

46 responses to “There’s A Guy Works Down The Chipshop Swears He’s Elvish

  • imperialrebelork

    Haha curdle milk and steal children huh? Still not scary BUT there are some creepy masks there mate. I think I could use dom Harlequin heads for my crow-warcry-Warband. Very nice work here man

    • Wudugast

      Oh come on, they must be a little bit scary?! No-one likes curdled milk! Aye, the Harlequin masks are nicely creepy – I can see them looking very weird and sinister on the Corvus Cabal models. Definitely an idea that warrants further exploration mate!

  • imperialrebelork

    Some not dom. Oh and speaking of auto correct. I tried texting something about Elvis to mum the other day and it kept auto correcting to Levi’s (as in the jeans) what the shit??? It could have been worse and kept changing it to Elves 😉

    • Wudugast

      Say what? What are these kids in Silicon Valley that program these things on?! Just checked, my phone knows who Elvis is (which is a big relief to me because I only just bought it and I’m not ready to tell it to go and stand in the corner and think on it’s misdeeds).

      Fun fact, back in the early 2000’s I read (and honestly I don’t know now how reliable this fact is but it sounds cool so let’s run with it) that at that time the number of Elvis impersonators was rising so fast that, if it continued rising at that rate, by now 1/3 of the planet’s population would be the king.

      Additional fun fact, and this one is definitely true, I’m currently drinking a beer called Elvis Juice, it’s a grapefruit flavoured IPA and it’s bloody good.

      • imperialrebelork

        Hahaha grapefruit flavoured? Wow. I usually like beer to taste like beer but I’ve slowly started to embrace the boutique beer movement hehe

      • Wudugast

        Aye, it sounds a bit poncy doesn’t it 😅 On the one hand I like beer that tastes like beer too but on the other hand I’m quite neophilic when it comes to food and drink, I like trying new things. My dad sent me a case of beers with all kinds of unusual flavours, I’m treating it like a lucky dip and pulling one out at random each evening. 🙂

      • imperialrebelork

        I’ve always said if someone calls it food or drink I’ll try it. Ahh that’s nice of your dad

      • Wudugast

        Yeah, it was really decent of him, I was fair touched. 🙂 Tonight’s flavour was tangerine. You’d think tangerine flavoured beer would be shit but it’s actually really good.

      • imperialrebelork

        Sounds alright actually. I had mandarine flavoured beer in Bali which was nice but only 2% alcohol so what’s the point haha

      • Wudugast

        Aye, that is a bit on the weak side – this one was a healthier 4.5%. I can imagine it working well somewhere like Bali or on a nice hot summer’s day though – nice and refreshing.

  • Adeo

    My favourite flavour of elf – dark. Great use of the Harlequin heads. It’s easy to tell female GW minis (even elves) – look for the boob armour and waspish waist!

    • Wudugast

      You can’t go wrong with a dark elf. 🙂 Mind you, I’m fond of the wood elves too – I thought about both of them for armies back in WHFB. The dark elf army almost happened a number of times but somehow I never quite committed to it.

      Aye, you’re not wrong on the female miniatures, in fact with some of the elves the boob armour is all you’ve got to go on!

      • Faust

        Very true, I’m still not sure if that one mini in the new Imperials BB team is supposed to be a guy or a girl.

      • Wudugast

        Which, the one with the two braids (number 6 on the studio team)? Definitely a girl, look at the narrow jaw and waspish waist. Also the only one on the team without facial hair of some kind! Compared to the other players she’s much slighter. I do like that the female GW models are a lot more subtle nowadays though, they don’t all have boob armour and high-heels.

      • Faust

        Yep, that’s the one. She is certainly meant to be a girl, but she could also nearly be a boy or slender guy with pigtails. Granted, I’m just going off the few pics I’ve seen online. But first impressions were “What is that supposed to be?”

      • Wudugast

        Aye, the pigtails and the comparison with other models on the team is the clincher. Snip the hair off and put her in a different context and she could pass for a boy. I’ve seen some people do interesting things with converting that team into Imperial Guardsmen. I’ll just paint mine as Blood Bowl players though, they’re much too posh to fit in with my filthy, downtrodden Guard!

      • Faust

        Have you seen any conversions of the Linemen themselves? I realized the box set needs two more Linemen for a decent team. But you have one burly guy, and one lass. Making those two not look like the others, would be a bit challenging. I guess I can make at least one of the ladies, a boy, haha! Maybe something will come to mind once I start assembling.

      • Wudugast

        One of my main beefs with the new Imperial Nobility team is the lack of options to make each player unique. At least the Black Orcs have alternative heads. It was a problem, I felt, with the early teams but it seems to have been rectified with the latter ones so on that front the Nobles seem like a step backwards. The proof of the pudding is in the eating and all that, and I can never be sure a conversion is going to work until I’ve actually glued the bits together (and sometimes not even then) but looking at the sprue and the instructions I’d say they’re prime candidates for headswaps. Heads from the Empire (now Freeguild) Greatswords kit would a good go-to but any Empire kit would be worth investigating. If I can get my hands of the head of Karl Franz (the Emperor of the WHFB Empire) I’m definitely using that, how great would it be to have the Emperor himself moonlighting on the pitch!

        It also looks as though it should be straightforward to swap the hands between the two male linemen although I’d want to dry fit that to see if it would work, it might make the running one look at though he’s holding his lower arms oddly limp
        Part 16, the eagle in on the chest armour of lineman 2, looks like it can be left off altogether so you could build one of them with it and one without. It might even be possible to use the spare eagle on lineman 1 – would need to try that out to be sure though.

        As for the girl you could snip her braids off to make her look a little different, but it might be worth having a look for spare Sisters of Battle heads. Best to avoid the ones with the traditional Sister of Battle hairdo, I find no matter what you do those are too iconic to look like anything other than Sisters of Battle. Some of the Imperial Guard helmetless Cadians have quite small heads in comparison to the Blood Bowl players as well. If you were really enthusiastic you might even be able to fit her helmet onto a new head although that looks like a job for steady hands and steely nerves!

      • Faust

        Damn, thanks man! I was wondering about some head swaps, but didn’t know what I’d even begin to look for in Warhammer land. Thanks for the options! Like you said, until I start looking at them, I’ll have little clue what might work. But I might order some extra Freeguild heads just for a start.

      • Wudugast

        Just received a set of Pistoliers heads (again from the Empire/Freeguild range) they seem to be a bit rarer than Greatswords these days but they’d be another great fit if you can find them.

      • Faust

        Thanks man, I’m looking through those now too. I really like some of the Knight helms, but I’m guessing they would look weird on the Imperials since they aren’t fully armored. People have also said we won’t get a Brettonian team, because we have the Imperials. If that’s the case, it’s too bad because I always wanted some guys running around in Knight armor along with peasants and squires.

      • Wudugast

        I dunno, I think we’ll get a Brettonian team in time. If Blood Bowl keeps being popular, and it’s showing no signs of stopping at the moment, then they’ll keep releasing teams. There’s still a few of the old teams to redo, and there’s plenty of options in the background that they can explore, but Brettonians seem like an obvious candidate sooner or later. Might not be for a few years (or they might announce them next week) but I’d put money on us seeing them someday.

        Funnily enough I also looked at the Knight helms and decided against them for the exact same reason. Great minds think alike and fools seldom differ! Which are we? I guess history will be the judge of that! 🙂

      • Faust

        Oh cool, I’ll still keep dreaming then! The only downside, is that I haven’t been too crazy about most of the rosters for Brettonians. But maybe something better will come out later. I just like the looks of them, haha!

  • Alex

    These rock mate – the concept is perfectly carried by the gritty un-Elvish less-than-pristine paint scheme. I love ‘em!

  • theimperfectmodeller

    I know this might sound like an odd remark, and I am struggling how best to describe what I mean, but there is a certain plainness about the latest three which I rather like. The figures are not overly complicated but are in their own way just as dramatic. Of course a fantastic paint job always makes a huge difference and unsurprisingly you are fully on the mark once again. 🙂

    • Faust

      Could be they have the better poses of the lot? The one Thrower and the Catcher, don’t look quite as interesting. Though, I think I did like the Thrower model okay, when I put mine together. Maybe it’s the heads though?

    • Wudugast

      I know exactly what you mean, and in many ways it’s something I strive to capture with models like these. I tend to think about it like this; if I paint a single figure I’ll put in more time and look to do a better job of his face than his boots. That way the eye is drawn to the part of the model you want the viewer to look at, not be distracted and lead elsewhere. It’s the same principle with conversions and with painting groups.

      Similarly in a team/warband/army there will be stand out characters who deserve more attention. When someone sits down to look at their friend’s newly painted army they’ll probably pick up the general and the heroes and give them a closer look, rather than plucking some soldier from the third rank of one of the infantry squads. Thus these supporting characters need to be painted in a way that’s sympathetic to the collection as a whole, in such a way that they don’t outshine the key characters but which still ensures the collection looks good overall. This isn’t to diminish the importance of the rank and file, if I paint the general to an award winning standard and leave the common soldiers with nothing more than an undercoat the army as a whole will look unfinished no matter how good the big man is (in exactly the same way as a model with a perfectly painted face and unfinished clothes). Thus by minimising the flourishes used here I leave myself with somewhere to go when it comes to the more prominent models in the group.

      With conversions I always ask myself “does this part of the model need to be changed?”, and “What am I trying to say by changing something?”. These are great models to begin with, if I don’t need to change something I won’t. If I do change something it needs to serve a purpose.

      Anyway, I’ll get down off my podium now – the key thing is that you like them 🙂

      • theimperfectmodeller

        Yes I certainly do like them and your approach makes perfect sense. Because I tend to do single figures rather larger groups or armies I hadn’t applied your logic. That said I do something similar in that if I find the figure has enough going on I will keep the base simple. If there isn’t a lot going on or I am not best pleased with the final paint job I will try to distract the viewer with a more complex base. Thanks for taking the trouble to explain it always helps to understand how some people work. 🙂

  • lordcommandereloth

    Very nice sir, and that last split helmet looks great.

  • Pete S/ SP

    Those look fantastic- really like them.



  • Kuribo

    The squad is really coming along! I like the mix of masks you’ve got thus far and the color scheme fits the models well too. This team of elves don’t look like a group of Blood bowl players who are going to be nice or worry too much about sportsmanship on the pitch which I’m sure is what you were shooting for 🙂

    • Wudugast

      Thank you! It’s taken me longer than it should have done to realise that the colour scheme I’ve used here is very similar to the one I’ve used on my Daughters of Khaine. My aim was for a bunch of evil looking elves who won’t hesitate to put the boot in when the chance arises. Blood Bowl fans don’t turn out to see anyone play nice! 😀

  • mellis1644

    Looking good. Very impressive work

  • Faust

    Nice work there Wudu! It’s cool to see that your color scheme transferred over to the plain GW model just as nicely, and ties them together. That mask on the third one though, is just perfect. Makes me wish 1) I had some masks like that. 2) I hadn’t put mine together yet! ;P

    The only thing is, I’m having a bit of a struggle figuring out the positions. Not entirely your fault, as it’s kind of that way with the minis on the team as is. Looks like you have 1 Thrower, 1 Catcher, and a mix of either Linemen or Blitzers? I’d definitely get 2 Blitzers at least for that team, and I think most would say to use all 4 Catchers.

    Would love to see a pic of these next to your Orcs sometime as well. Keep at it!

    • Wudugast

      Thank you! Let’s see, the two boys at the top are a Catcher (L) and a Thrower (R). Then the three girls are all linemen (according to the back of the box anyway!). It’s not easy to tell with the elf team though is it? I think I might end up using the transfers to label their bases, I haven’t so far because transfers are always a bit tricky to work with but I should probably gird my loins and get on with it.

      Thanks for the tactical advice, I’ll probably do the same thing I’ve done with the orcs and finish off the team that comes in the box, then start looking around online for a good bargain on a couple more models to optimise the team. And I’ll certainly take a group shot of these alongside the orcs next time I get any more of them painted. 🙂

      • Faust

        For the Elven Union, I think I used similar face masks or parts for the Blitzers. But even then, if it’s been a few months and I go digging in the box, I sometimes have to look them back up. The labels help a lot. My brain is having a hard time with the Imperial team too, so they are definitely getting some writing on the bases.

        If you use Micro Set, decals are not too bad. Just a bit time consuming. There’s some decent YouTube videos out there that make it easy.

      • Wudugast

        The more teams you start the harder it becomes to keep track I find. When it was just the Orc team I knew exactly who was what but now I’m having to think a bit harder to remember which player is which. I’ll have a nose on youtube and see what advice I can find, I tend to forget about watching youtube videos but there’s some very helpful stuff up there.

      • Faust

        I only find a few of them that puzzle my brain. The Elven Union and Imperials being the primary ones, for some reason the pieces just look too similar to me.

        For Micro Sol and Micro Set, there were two main videos that I found super helpful for me. I had them in a blog post awhile ago…let me do some digging…annnnnnnd with the magic of internet time… they are!

      • Wudugast

        Thanks muchly – I’ll give those a watch 🙂

  • Mark A. Morin

    Lovely painting on lovely creations, even if they are evil children poachers. The other thing I’m wondering, after watching Birds of Prey the other night (and the harlequin masks) is whether you’d ever do a Harley Quinn?

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