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 Kyronius' Norse Ne'er-do-wells

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Kyronius



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PostSubject: Kyronius' Norse Ne'er-do-wells   Tue 4 Sep 2012 - 17:43

Coming from Sweden, I've grown up with Viking imagery pretty much everywhere. Vikings are generally held to be our heroic ancestors with big muscles, long beards, in a perpetual state of being angry and yelling in a most manly way. Also, they only raped and pillaged a bit, but only if they had to.

So, when choosing what manner of warband to acquire , I obviously didn't go for pansy elves or estrogen-filled imperials.

However, finding miniatures that fit the theme has been a bit of a pain. I wanted to go for a more "genuine" Norse look with a Chaos-y twist to go along with the fluff, which immediately failed horribly. All the Viking minis I could find looked like absolute crap and thus began a hunt for rugged warriors of the North among the countless miniature manufacturers online. GW's WoC range is too overtly Chaos, I imagine my Norse Warband to be men of the North with great axes and whose gods are the Chaos gods, while not having adopted the over-the-top evil knight look of WoC. However, I found that Wulfrik the Wanderer could fit in with some modifications. I also got Barbarian King from CMON's Limited edition minis and also Maurader Warlord from Avatars of War. I find these to be very nice minis and I decided to try out some new painting techniques on them; NMM among others.

Since I wanted to experiment with some new techniques, I thought it best to practice on other, less awesome minis, first, so for training purposes I got these from my local gaming store.

So, after that wall of text, here come the first three, aka the practice minis:






They're not very good sculpts, with limbs that look almost flat from some angles, grotesque faces and one with an anatomically impossible grip on a two-handed axe. Since I got these mainly for practice and I'll probably just be using them as henchmen till I find nicer minis, I didn't bother too much with cleaning up mold lines and such. I did however do a small conversion of the most Conan-looking of the bunch. I replaced his suspiciously toothpick-like sword with an axe I had left from a box of black orcs. I feel that the slightly over-sized weapon draws attention from how crappy the sculpt is and how he looks like Fabio Lanzoni's deformed brother.

I'm eager to hear what you think!

Oh, and if you can recommend me any minis, don't hesitate to!
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sianpää
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PostSubject: Re: Kyronius' Norse Ne'er-do-wells   Wed 5 Sep 2012 - 2:22

Kyronius wrote:
Vikings are generally held to be our heroic ancestors with big muscles, long beards, in a perpetual state of being angry and yelling in a most manly way.
Also, they only raped and pillaged a bit, but only if they had to.

Haha, great stuff. thumbsup

Nice idea for warband, you can't go wrong with vikings.
Your painting looks very good, especially NMM and skin. Furs though look like they could use good ol' drybrushing.
Not much to say about these, really. I like the way you painted them and hope to see more!


Since you encouraged to recommend minis:

You probably have already checked historicals, but if scale creep does not bother you there are some really cool figures with (more) accurate historical looks.
Foundry and Gripping Beast for example both produce viking lines and their figures look really nice. But AFAIK they are smaller when compared to GW's heroic 28mm size figs.

For more fantasy/barbarian look I'd go with Reaper and em4:

http://www.reapermini.com/OnlineStore/viking
http://www.reapermini.com/OnlineStore/barbarian%20human

http://www.em4miniatures.com/acatalog/Infantry.html
Same figures are sold also by Mirliton at http://www.mirliton.it/

Good luck with your project!
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PostSubject: Re: Kyronius' Norse Ne'er-do-wells   Wed 5 Sep 2012 - 4:54

I agree...GREAT STUFF! The minis themselves remind me of Terry Pratchett's Cohan The Barbarian...probably their skinny, knotted muscle look. The NMM effect turned out TERRIFIC; if I look at a mini & wonder is that metallic or non metallic, then the effect is successful...or my eyesight has gotten worse. Likewise, I agree that the skin tones are fantastic & the fur is flat. All in all VERY WELL DONE! thumbsup
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Von Kurst
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PostSubject: Re: Kyronius' Norse Ne'er-do-wells   Wed 5 Sep 2012 - 5:41

Can't make the photos enlarge on my home computer, but welcome to the forum!
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DeafNala
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PostSubject: Re: Kyronius' Norse Ne'er-do-wells   Wed 5 Sep 2012 - 5:49

Von Kurst wrote:
Can't make the photos enlarge on my home computer, but welcome to the forum!

Left click the images...one at a time...& you'll get them in their larger form on Image Shack. clown
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PostSubject: Re: Kyronius' Norse Ne'er-do-wells   Wed 5 Sep 2012 - 6:27

DeafNala wrote:
I agree...GREAT STUFF! The minis themselves remind me of Terry Pratchett's Cohan The Barbarian...probably their skinny, knotted muscle look. The NMM effect turned out TERRIFIC; if I look at a mini & wonder is that metallic or non metallic, then the effect is successful...or my eyesight has gotten worse. Likewise, I agree that the skin tones are fantastic & the fur is flat. All in all VERY WELL DONE! thumbsup

Thanks for the kind words! Actually, the one with the helmet and the beard also made me think of Cohen and his habit of spraining his back in the middle of fights. Just recently started reading the Discworld novels... Amazing stuff!

Yeah, I agree that the fur came out a bit flat and I probably should get around to drybrushing another highlight or two on them. I'm really eager to start painting away on the three hero models I have, but I know from experience that minis that are left half-finished seldom get finished.

sianpää wrote:
Nice idea for warband, you can't go wrong with vikings.
Your painting looks very good, especially NMM and skin. Furs though look like they could use good ol' drybrushing.
Not much to say about these, really. I like the way you painted them and hope to see more!

Thanks! Yeah, the furs do need a bit of touching up, just got to figure out how I'm going to highlight them.

sianpää wrote:
Since you encouraged to recommend minis:

You probably have already checked historicals, but if scale creep does not bother you there are some really cool figures with (more) accurate historical looks.
Foundry and Gripping Beast for example both produce viking lines and their figures look really nice. But AFAIK they are smaller when compared to GW's heroic 28mm size figs.

For more fantasy/barbarian look I'd go with Reaper and em4:

http://www.reapermini.com/OnlineStore/viking
http://www.reapermini.com/OnlineStore/barbarian%20human

http://www.em4miniatures.com/acatalog/Infantry.html
Same figures are sold also by Mirliton at http://www.mirliton.it/

Good luck with your project!

I am very scale conscious, since I think that having the models vary too much in size sort of makes them all look more unrealistic when put together. I will definitely check some of the links. I'm thinking of getting these at some point to phase out/compliment the three henchmen above. However, I'm inclined to think that they look a bit to "exotic" to qualify as Nordic, but I guess some conversion can cure that Wink
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PostSubject: Re: Kyronius' Norse Ne'er-do-wells   Sat 8 Sep 2012 - 22:07

lol the armpit hair is great!!
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Kyronius



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PostSubject: Re: Kyronius' Norse Ne'er-do-wells   Sun 16 Sep 2012 - 16:29

tuxedokman wrote:
lol the armpit hair is great!!

Yeah, I lol'd at first too, I mean, I don't expect barbarian brawlers to shave their armpits but the way the sculptor made it so prominent is a bit strange.

Anyhow, here's a small update. I got food-poisoned by some bad sushi today and thus got the time to try out a freehand for the first time and this is the result:



I intended it to look like a runestone carried as a shield. I took the shield that came with Ulfrik the Wanderer (who will soon be the carrier of this particular shield), filed it down, since I didn't really like the look of it. With all the skulls on the model and the human skin and yet more skulls on the shield, I figured I'd make it a little less crazy by filing down the shield and painting something interesting on there instead.

So, I went for a rune stone look, with the ubiquitous dragon. The dragon I decided to go with was the Midgard serpent, or Jörmungandr, the snake holding the world together by lying around its edges biting its own tails. My first idea was to have it be Fafnir getting slayed by Sigurd, along the lines of this piece of runic art. But getting that down on a shield that's about 3x1 cm wouldn't really go over well, seeing as it would be very hard to make out, so I figured I'd just have to make my own design and adapt it to the shield, as the rune carvers did with regard to the stones they had at hand. So, this was my original design:



I did a rough outline of it on the shield, but at that size, it had to be made a little less graphically complicated, so I dumbed it down a bit, so that it could be accomodated neatly on the shield and also be a viable motif to execute with my very modest freehand skills.

So, since it's a rune stone carried by a bloodthirsty maniac, I just had to add a runic inscription. But what to write? Most of the runic inscriptions are boring as hell (during the course of my educaiton, I had to read them all... All 6 000 of them...) and they talk about a guy commissioning the stone to be raised in memory of a relative (or even himself) and often with a mention of the carver. Since I found it a bit, well, fucked up, to dedicate it to a dead relative, I painstakingly transcribed my favourite stanza (no 77) from the Old Icelandic Hávamál into the Younger Futhark script. It basically talks of how the way to immortality is to perform glorious deeds and having your name forever remembered, thus never truly dying (the translation on Wikipedia is inaccurate).

The raven is one of Odin's ravens, the main god of the Old Norse pantheon and also the god of war. This is based on the ravenbanner, which the vikings are said to have carried with them into war. I like the look of it and I intend to make it a recurring image on the rest of my warband.

But, I digress.

I still have to do some minor cleaning up of it and some more highlighting of the edges, but otherwise I'm pretty content with it. I didn't really manage to pull off the stone effect and it turned out a little too dark, but overall, I'm happy with it.
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PostSubject: Re: Kyronius' Norse Ne'er-do-wells   Mon 17 Sep 2012 - 5:15

Now that really adds a lot to the War Band; the inclusion of historical bits into fantasy minis/games is a rare thing...GOOD IDEA. The shield looks WONDERFUL...see all the book work paid off. thumbsup
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