What a mouthfull of a tittle!
New kit, new approach and learning new methods!
So after much procrastination and hesitation, I finally decided to indulge myself in the Games Workshop Warhammer 40K kits. They don’t come cheap sadly, and choosing one was difficult as for that price I could get 2 HG Gunpla kits! However I wanted to feel the hype I’ve read so much about and all those videos of painting them with their Citadel line of paints!
I’ve already started a collection of Citadel paints, and use them extensively on my Gunpla builds especially the inner frames, washing and dry brushing. They brush on great, mix easily with water, come in all shades and mixtures for different applications like washes, layers, dry brushing, glazing…the list is huge! It’s convenient as everything is pre-mixed and pigmented just right to suit the application. It works for me as I don’t airbrush, well hardly, due to space and family. So anything that goes on well with a brush is a Godsend! Still I have not used them on their Warhammer kits and after watching countless videos on how they are painted, I had to jump on the bandwagon and let the curious inner modeler inside me loose!
The Stormhawk Interceptor was my choice and I could build either of the 2 variants, the Storm Hawk Interceptor or the Storm Talon Gunship. A Canopy and pilot was included so the choice was to build the Storm Talon variant so I could live the figure painting experience. Plus! It had a nicely detailed cockpit which I could paint up,…. something I have not done for years!
Having come from tons of Gunpla, I had to take a step back in reading the instructions and build approach. Instructions are not like Bandai’s or most well documented Japanese model kit instructions. It was straight forward and simple, so finding sprues and their corresponding numbers took some hunting. While cutting the parts out I set about planning how to approach the painting. Everything was in a grey plastic which meant I could de-nub and sand down seam lines without needing to polish off to perfection, since they had to be painted over anyway. I don’t paint my Gunpla’s much as I often keep them on their base plastic color which means carefull de-nubbing, sanding and polishing. This time, with the Stormhawk, I could take it notches back and relax!
One thing I liked about the plastic used is that its real easy to sand down quick! Which means a light touch! Any harder pressure and it becomes wonky! Light touches with a file, then reduce down grits and polish if needed. Since it was going to be painted, polishing wasn’t really needed. This added to a much faster build.
I set about to prepare several sub assemblies to determine easier routes for painting. The cockpit area was all painted separately as well as the pilot. Areas to be secured with glue were then scraped away and attached accordingly. This allowed me to get to the fine details easily and closely with my small brushes, unlike the GW videos where the figure is already glued in! Some good and bad to this as some areas called for careful paint removal and often lead to over removal! ARRGH! Touch up.
I don’t play tabletop Warhammer (only on the PC though..hehe) so I wanted my own take on it and didn’t need to worry about having it painted to a House theme or some specific lore. I chose red, black and yellow. I like the blue Space Marines theme but it kept reminding me of a SWAT aircraft of the future, which crossed my mind but didn’t have no SWAT like decals! Hmmm…perhaps one day I could try that theme? In hindsight (as always) it was a safe approach.
Painting it was as per normal with a primer sprayed on everything first. Base colors were brushed on ala Citadel style. Followed by the recommended washes and then layer paints to liven things up. Then came the edge highlighting! Something that was new to me as I have a very shaky hand! Mind you, several attempts went crooked and had to be re-touched and redone! Eventually I got the hang of it and had the confidence to do it easily. So much so, that I found it fun to have conquered new ground and now have the confidence to try it even more! I learned something NEW!! YAY ME!!
Im left with the base which I have no idea as yet what diorama theme I wish to have. Too many ideas are in my head so I’m leaving this out for now. Maybe grab a small box of Space marines and do something? Perhaps.
Overall, I’m pleased with this kit especially for the wealth of details molded in! It gave me an opportunity to learn and take things slow and easy with detailed painting. Good quality brushes play an important part and a little investment in them will do you good. Of course, looking after them is equally as important as well. There were some minor hiccups such as wrong sprue numbers on the instructions, which lead to a little treasure hunt and slight frustration finding a tiny piece. Parts went together well and fit perfectly. Some seams needed to be filled (Tamiya cement and squish!) and molding lines removed. However that wasn’t difficult but needed all my needle files to assist in hard to reach corners. I guess it all depends on how much one wishes to fuss around with perfection. I’m a little lazy (or very)..LOL!
So would I invest in more Warhammer kits? I wish too!! They look awesome when done up and painted! A whole different genre to display compared to a Gunpla and it’s flat armored surfaces! Loads of detail to fool with and the whole medieval /steam punk/fantasy war look is so darn appealing! Only thing holding me back is the price of their kits. It will take awhile to save up and commit. For now, it will be this little chubby interceptor!
As for the Citadel Paints? Well, they are convenient to use and their pigments bold and bright! Thins with water which is a major plus! Specially prepared for various applications and the whole GW painting approach is very creative and intriguing! So much so that you just want to be a part of it!! Yeah I could have used other brands of paints but when there is something on offer that removes all that prep time, I’d choose the latter. They don’t come cheap too but compared to most brands, they are competitive, though a little larger bottles would be nice to be really competitive. In the end, you don’t really use up much and a little does go a long way from the tiny pot!
I now have a Warhammer 40K kit on display and pretty pleased with the results. Cost aside, I did learn and attempt several things that I never thought I could do when I started modeling. This alone is worth the effort for me and made it all the more fun to see it completed.
Now, what should I get next?