+ inload: Imperial psyker +

+ Primaris psyker +

+ Aradia Madellan, primaris psyker – no, not an eight-foot tall genetically engineered superhero, but an Imperial battle psyker. +

+ Following on from her Rogue Trader and techpriest comrades, the third hero/combatant for Combat Arena steps up. A similarly dynamic sculpt, I wanted to get across a slightly grubbier feel than Nayam Shai Murad, as Madellan is effectively a guardswoman. She's effectively an officer, sure, but still a relatively low-ranking member of the military. I used similar techniques for her coat, boots and gloves as for the Rogue Trader, but added touches of grey and brown to mute and neutralise the colours, giving a grubbier, less opulent result. +

+ The scheme is thus a bit of a 'symphony in brown'. Brown coat, brown trousers, brown holsters and pouches, brown wood on the staff... even brown-based skin. I hope, however, it's not dull. I've made sure to use different hues of brown, from pale wood on the staff to deep black-brown on the coat. The advantage this scheme gives is that it works beautifully as a base for some parts to leap out: +

+ To avoid the scheme being entirely brown, I added a flash of red for her sash. This 'hot spot' warms the scheme and draws the eye, so I added a little pattern with repeated dots, just to give a little freehand flair. +

 + I'm not generally a big fan of glowing eyes and so forth for psykers; I prefer to picture battle psyker's powers as more akin to Scanners-style brutality – less wizardy pyrotechnics, more people coming apart at the seams for no apparent reason. This is an example of leaving 'design space' in my collection for Eldar and similar figures who can be a lot more showy in their psychic showing. +

+ With that said, I'm always happy for technology to have a bit of object source lighting, so her psychic hood/collar thing has been painted with bright pale green light to suggest her psychic powers manifesting and being channelled through the hood. This is really at the root of why I opted for the deep dark brown scheme. +

+ If you want lights on a model to be effective, the underlying scheme needs to be low key – that is, for all the tones to be relatively dark – so that the lit-up parts stand out properly. If I'd used (say) a clean white coat, the lights on the collar wouldn't have read properly, as they'd be darker in tone than the coat – and clearly the object giving light needs to be lighter than the surroundings. Hue is largely irrelevant here; it's all down to tone. +

+ What's next? +


+ One last character – the sword and shield-carrying Crusader – is left, along with the pair of servitors above. As you can see, these are coming on quite swiftly. As befits these man-machine hybrids, I'm painting them up to look like a cross between workmen and a JCB, using the same scheme as I did for the galvanic servo-haulers terrain [+noosphericinloadlink embedded+] . +


  1. That psyker is one of my favourite things to come out of the new Blackstone Fortress line - the whole larger-than-life but still very human characters, that sort of thing.
    I am a big fan of the more washed-out green tone on the big glowy orb bits, and the texture on the coat adds a lot to an area that might have been a bit flat given the very brown colour palette. I may be slightly biased in my love of painting textures onto flat surfaces, though.
    The differences in the texture and tone of the browns really helps add some contrast while still keeping the military theme.

  2. Just more brilliant stuff.

    Love the industrial look of the Servitors.

  3. Such a great paintjob! I really like it, it's pretty evocative. Nice choice of palette


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