Wednesday, June 4

Terror From the Skies (and Beneath the Skies, Too)!





So I started building my Heldrake.  I decided that a standard great dragon/wyrm appearance would fit my theme nicely, and converting some great raven-bird thing would be too difficult given my time constraints and I had absolutely no idea how to accomplish the look aside from using huge feathered wings (which wouldn’t look very daemonic to me).

I was able to kitbash the remains of my Maulerfiend kit into the Heldrake to add some larger hind legs, doing away with the ‘hel-chicken’ trope you see on the internet so often.  I’ll also use the (previously unused) lasher tendrils from the Maulerfiend to add more wires and umbilical cables to the rear of the best.  I decided on just one, to make more of a whiplike tail, rather than using all six of the lasher tendrils.

With the Imperial components from my Space Wolf kits (which are used to wolfify my marines) I built a dead loyalist marine.  I attached a zombie corpse head where the helmeted noggin should go, and made his arms and legs look suitably limp.  I then crammed his lifeless form into the talons of the beast.  I’m pleased with the result.  I knew from the start that I wanted to emulate the official art of the Heldrake pictured below:

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The initial idea was to do a ripped-open Valkyrie cockpit in the claws of the beast, with it breathing down the canopy - not very practical.

The reality of the pictured concept would have been a challenge without endless cutting and repositioning of the existing neck piece (it arches upward, not downward).  I could have flipped it, which I tried, but it looked a bit funny and the armor plates visually weighted down the figure making it look like it was falling, not flying.  I had to find some other way to show the Heldrake in the act of some vicious brutality toward Imperial scum.  Thus, the scorched marine was born (died?):

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The model itself looks good to me, a limp marine with dented and melted armor, the zombie’s lifeless expression, and trailing legs. The paint job to make him look suitably bloodied will make it or break it.
The Maulerfiend legs attached at the socket where the smaller standard legs should be.  You  just need to clip the talons from the 'hinge' portion of the original legs, and attach them to the Maulerfiend kit.
The Maulerfiend legs attached at the socket where the smaller standard legs should be. You just need to clip the talons from the ‘hinge’ portion of the original legs, and attach them to the Maulerfiend kit.
A side view of the (now primed) Heldrake, showing off those bulked up legs.  Makes it feel more like a monster that can shred you with either set of talons.
A side view of the (now primed) Heldrake, showing off those bulked up legs. Makes it feel more like a monster that can shred you with either set of talons.

After a couple of slow hours building the Heldrake and movie-watching I decided to move on and crank out the rest of the Maulerfiend.  Not much conversion went into this one, if any.  I’m open to suggestion, but the model itself is suitably barbaric and Khornate.  Maybe I can greenstuff some daemonic faces leering out of the armor? Dunno. I’ll have to think on it before he gets the spray-treatment.

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A boring, plain Maulerfiend. He needs a hug.

I may pull Urlag out tonight and do another couple of painting layers.  I really need to be in the mood to paint, and I think I feel an itch coming on.

++UPDATE++

I painted Urlag – a little bit, anyway.  I’m liking how the skin is coming out.  Always a work in progress.  The Forge World books and photographs inspired me a lot, as they use a very muted, washed out palette.  I'll probably repaint the leather straps beneath the shoulders to add a BIT more color.  Need to think on it.

Work in progress of the mighty warlord Urlag.
Work in progress of the mighty warlord Urlag.