+ inload: Guilliman Illuminated +

+ inload: Guilliman Illuminated +

+REDACT LOG 150916: Additional vid-pict captures embedded+

+ Guilliman was surprisingly quick to build and paint; generally a good sign in my experience, as it means I'm properly enthused about the project. In the case of the Primarch, it was also a case that the stars were right, as I ended up with some unexpected  (and welcome!) free time to paint around the time I finished him. I thought I'd post up a few notes as they occur to me, but if there's anything specific anyone wants to know, let me know in the comments. +

+ First off, the size. I've posted the finished piece on a few fora, and a few people have asked how he scales to the marines.

Next to one of my marines (n.b. the marine is based on a Terminator).

Next to a marine on a similar height scenic base.

...and a WIP of the new version (right) next to his earlier incarnation.

+ I wanted to keep the overall paint scheme as similar as possible to the existing palette of the army. I've deliberately reined in the palette for the 190th (the new Ultramarines) compared to the 15th (the older ones), and felt it would be a shame to compromise that for the leader. As a result, the techniques and colour scheme were largely similar to those used for the rank and file. 

+ Rather annoyingly, the photo-hosting site I use seems to have put some sort of filter onto (mysteriously, only some) of the images, so I apologise for the variance in the apparent colour. The second and third pictures below show the truest colours.

+ The front shot is good to show the overall impression of the figure. Finding the balance of decorative flourishes to add was difficult, and found intuitively, rather than through a particularly well thought-out plan! Broadly speaking, I trimmed away Legion identifiers from the Vulkan and Ferrus Manus figures, as mentioned in a previous inload [+noospheric inloadlink embedded+], reserving the more generally Imperial ones like the thunderbolts, and flattening areas like the belt buckle and torso centre to allow some freehand. The models are beautifully sculpted; far beyond my greenstuffing abilities, and so I decided I'd be better off with freehand painting for fine detail than trying to emulate the sculptor's skill. +

+ This angle shows the colour rather better, and provides a good angle on the weaponry. A couple of people have commented that the sword in particular is too plain. I really want to ground the army in realism – at least, insofar as that's possible with 40k! Part of evoking the Low Heroic mode I'm after is to keep things understated. I think there's enough going on with a Primarch already to complicate things further with a beautifully engraved blade. 

+ Besides that consideration, I didn't feel a colourful or decorative blade particularly suited Guilliman's character. He's a practical warrior, and a commanding general more than a flashy swordsman; and leaving some 'concept space' for potential future Primarchs is important. The chunky raygun slung at his belt has a similar utilitarian feel.

+ Showing the workings of the armour, this picture also shows a scabbarded shortsword. The design and paintscheme matches those I've used elsewhere in the army. Little bits like this are intended to suggest the idea that he's down there with his men. +

+ So... blue... Apologies for the vibrancy here! This shot shows the wrist-mounted tactical cogitator and pict-capture recorder on his backpack that I added. These are intended to suggest Guilliman's hunger for information and his calculating side. Note also a Legion symbol toga-pin (on the shoulder pad) and the pteruges (leather straps), which hint at the Classical aesthetic behind hte Ultramarines. 

+ A closer look at the details shows the Legion number (XIII) on his kneepad – which required some careful trimming and gluing – and also above his pteruges. His right leg (left of the image) sports a Raptor's head device – used by the Emperor himself – which I added to reinforce his loyalty.

+ This show shows the sun device in the centre of his chest. As well as being an in-universe reference to the solar system, it's also a universally and fundamentally human symbol. I like the unknowing echo of the Chaos star it has too, which hints at the dual nature and mysterious origins of the Primarchs. 

+ I like to use big centrepiece models like this to try out new techniques. If they don't work, you can spend the time persevering and end up with a decent result while knowing that you don't have to remember the steps to repeat it. In this case, it's the marble on the outer parts of the pauldrons. I lay on a streaky wash of a cream mix (from vague, failing mem-banks, I think it was a mix of Vallejo white and GW Kommand Khaki), then developed the lines that suggested with increasingly fine lines of darker tones. These shades were produced by adding Scorched Brown to the mix. I then used diluted Vallejo Smoke to glaze the shadow areas. It's a great paint to add warmth to areas; much as you might use Payne's grey. Note that Smoke granulates – perfect for this stone effect, but the grainy finish might not be desirable elsewhere. +

+ What next? +

+ What's a king without an army? I'll be cracking on with the Ultramarines with the intention of getting 2500pts done. Here's a few WIPs:

+ I must confess that playing with the Primarch models has tempted me to have a go at building a complementary Lorgar. Never should have painted that Gal Vorbak Word Bearer... +

+ A final note +

+ Three illuminaries of the 40k blogging scene, Kari, Mikko and Migsula – late of Spiky Rat Pack and Legion of Plastic respectively – have joined forces to create Iron Sleet [+noospheric inloadlink embedded+], a brill new blog filled with gorgeous miniatures. If you haven't seen it already, go check out some awesome Finnish 40k. +


  1. Excellent work indeed, and the restraint in paint and ornamentation seems suited to the primarch.

    Small note: is the ultra symbol in his back banner level to the base rather than to the back banner?

    1. Hmm, you may well be right! Let me have a look at that once I get back... Ta for the catch!

  2. Fantastic looking model! I love the limited palette of dreary tones. I appreciate how you kept with the same color scheme as your other marines. His face turned out really well, capturing a lot of emotion and breathing life into the model.

    I also love all the little details you added on the model both with the painting and actual modeling. The little keypad on his wrist fits really well with the character. The little sun on his chest is also wonderful imagery.

    Inspiring work all around!

    1. Cheers – he was a lot of fun to do. The face was a bit of a lucky break – I spent ages on it initially, then wasn't happy with it. While I was painting the rest, I suddenly got carried away and repainted the face in about ten minutes. Much better than the painstaking initial go!

  3. Looking at this makes me wish gw had taken similar design cues with the reborn version. Lovely model .


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