+ inload: Dwarfs of the Tallowlands +

+ inload: Dwarfs of the Tallowlands +

+ Shieldbearers +

+ This piece looks slightly comical without the dwarf king on top. Either they've been very careless – 'Ooh-eck, Lundi, where's the chief gone?' – or they're nicking his shield. +

+ Either way, I'm pretty happy with how they've come out. Since the models seem to be almost all metal or beard, it's quite tricky to pick out the details in such a way that makes the most of the sculpt. Fortunately, it's inks and washes to the rescue! I painted everything except the beard and shoes black over a grey undercoat, then worked boltgun metal in while the black was still wet, working up from the bottom. That way, by the time you reach the top, the colour is drier and shows more. This creates the start of a gradient effect. +

+ I then built up the colour on the armour with boltgun metal and various washes (ultramarine ink, ogryn flesh and badab black), using different combinations and amounts to create different effects. For example, the chainmail is a mix of blue and black over boltgun metal, then another light drybrush of boltgun metal and black worked into the recesses. The brass/bronze effect on the helmets is somewhere around three layers of ogryn flesh over increasingly small areas of boltgun metal. + 

+ For the great shield itself, I was half-tempted to paint it using colour, but I stopped myself. For a start, if it's bright and gaudy it'll draw attention from whoever ends up on top. Secondly, I think a dwarf would be more impressed by the great age of a huge bronze shield. I can imagine it mounted over a dwarf hall, the rich bronze glowing ruddily in the firelight, the fine filigree gleaming and ancient. I used a couple of layers of gryphonne sepia over boltgun metal, and dropped diluted sepic ink into recesses while the wash was wet in order to strengthen the contrast in these areas. +

+ With the metal complete, I was not really very happy. Most of the miniatures were complete, and I really hadn't differentiated them from the orcs they'll be fighting beyond cleaner and more varied metal. I played around with coloured gloves and boots, but they just ended up looking too perky, and drawing the eye too much. I replaced them with earthy buffs and browns. + 

+ As I started painting the skin and beards, I felt much more satisfied – these were some significant areas of different colours, and they really helped the overall figure. It was a bit awkward to paint the faces with the metallics in place as the details are quite recessed and small. The realistic (well, hopefully) hues and range of tones in the beards gives them some individuality, and stops the dwarfs from looking too much like robots or automatons. +

+ Before basing, I went over to do the final details, picking out rings and inlaid detail on the helms and hammers with gold. Dwarfs love gold and admire craftsmanship. I can't imagine those honoured with carrying the chief would bring anything other than their best weaponry and armour. I picked out some jewels with blues and turquoises to contrast with the warm-hued armour and finish them off. +


+ Throngsman +

+ Blimey, if the faces on the shieldbearers were hard, this more modern sculpt is a real challenge. These were bought second-hand. While very nicely-assembled, the shield was in place, and it made getting in to paint the face and eyes a bit of a struggle, made no more pleasant by just how small they are! I'm far more used to the 1980s dwarfs, which had sharper, more exaggerated detail by virtue of being metal, and really struggled to get the eyes set correctly. The rest of the model was more straightforward. He was painted in much the same way as the shieldbearers, as he is similarly very heavily armoured. +

+ These models are lovely – I really like the heavy-set look of them, and I think they'll make a great core to the little force. +


  1. Now there are some awesome looking Dwarfs! Very nice mix of metals and I like the dark tones throughout. Fits my own vision of Dwarfs perfectly.

  2. The dwarves look great, and your right, they do look a bit funny without their lord. The metals are outstanding, very colorful with the brass and gold, but still very gritty and 'real' looking.

    1. Ta very much! I've always struggled a bit with metals, so glad it's looking realistic.


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