25 Jan 2018

107th post - Sméagol! (Showcase & Tutorial)





Hi everyone!

Well, four months after my latest post, a university break enables me to turn my attention to the blog  once again (for a short stand though).

For the first post of 2018 I'll be presenting Sméagol/Gollum.
This miniature is part of the BGiME magazines (came with the number 63) and was painted about two months ago, but due to lack of time it has been waiting on the shelf for photos and varnishing all this time.


So, who is Sméagol?

"Ghoul and former Hobbit. Gollum was once a Hobbit of the Stoor strain called Sméagol, who was born not far from Gladden Fields in the Vales of Anduin.

In 2463 of the Third Age, Sméagol's cousin Déagol found the One Ring while fishing and Sméagol immediately murdered him for it. The power of the Ring lengthened Sméagol's life, yet it warped him beyond recognition. Thereafter he was called Gollum because of the nasty, gutteral sounds he made when trying to speak. 

Description from David Day's
"Tolkien, the Illustrated
Encyclopaedia"
He became a ghoulish being who shunned light and lived by foul murder and eating unclean meat. 
He found comfort in dark pools in deep caverns. His skin became hairless, black and clammy, and his body thin and gaunt. His head was like a skull and his eyes bulged like those of a fish. His teeth grew long like Orc fangs,and his Hobbit feet grew flat and webbed. For nearly five centuries, Gollum lived hidden in caverns beneath the Misty Mountains.

Then, in 2941, the Hobbit Bilbo Baggins made a fateful visit to his cavern and took the One Ring from Gollum. In 3019, Gollum at last hunted Frodo Baggins, the new Ringbearer, but try as he might, he could not overcome him. For  a time Frodo almost seemed able to tame Gollum, but Gollum lived by treachery.

So it was at the final moment, when the power of the Ring overcame even the good Frodo upon Mount Doom, Gollum attacked the Ringbearer on the edge of the Cracks of Doom. Summoning all his evil strength, Gollum won the Ring by biting off Frodo's finger, but at that moment of victory, he toppled backwards with his precious prize down into the fiery bowels of the Earth."




Tutorial

This miniature is very easy to paint, but it has some details that really characterise it overall. The difference really stands in the details for this one.
I have decided to split the whole process of painting into six fases:
  1. The lake
  2. The rock
  3. The skin
  4. The hair
  5. The cloth
  6. The fish

First of all I've painted the base of the lake with random stains of deep blue 
(making sure they had all different tones), and a hint of green.

Then I applied a transparent nail varnish with glossy effect, in about 6/7 thin coats.
For it to be effective it is extremely important that the different layers are well dried, 
before proceeding to the next layer.
Painting the rock was the simplest of works:
Basecoated the entire rock (and the ground)
with Vallejo's Dark Grey
The texture was achieved with two drybrush coats:
Here with Citadel's Administratum Grey,
applied heavily, so it could make for most of the rock.
And finaly, with a mix of:
Citadel's Administratum Grey and Army Painter's Matt White,
just to make the edges of the rock stand out, and achieve
that final rock ground look.
The skin is, in my opinion, the most important part of this miniature,
 and great focus should take place when working on it.

For the basecoat, I've used Vallejo's Iraqui Sand, applied in the whole skin, and
avoiding only the eyes and the mouth, since I prefer to have them done after the washing/shading process.
The second part of the skin are the shades:
I've applied a 70/30 mix of Vallejo's Fleshtone Shade and Red Shade.
Finally, the skin is completed with the highlights:
First, again with Vallejo's Iraqui Sand in the most prominent areas of the skin.
Second, with Citadel's Screaming Skull for the same parts of the skin, but in a
 really smaller area.
For Sméagol's hair all I've used was Citadel's Stormvermin Fur and a really small brush.
It's crucial that it's done calmly and with a firm hand.
For the cloth part, I've decided to play a little with the properties of the shades,
so the final step will be essential.

For the basecoat, here it is: Citadel's Rhinox Hide.
The first highlights were made with Citadel's XV-88...
...and the second highlights were made with Vallejo's Ochre Brown.
On both the highlighting fases I've used a really broad base of Sméagol's cloth,
always with the objective of finishing it with the final washing fase.
And there it is, the final step with Citadel's Agrax Earthshade applied all over Sméagol's cloth.
For the final part of the miniature, I decided to paint the fishes.
Well, first of all I used two old metallic acrylic's I had from Pébéo (the silver and the turquoise),
but I'm sure a mix of silver acrylics with any non metallic blue will achieve the same effect.
For the fish bones of the fish laying in the rock, I've simply drybrushed lightly with white.

And finally, just so the model would have a more charismatic element, I've used the
Citadel's "Technical" paint Blood for the Blood God in the raw fish that Sméagol is eating.





Next, all I did was applying the final vegetation, and that's all !!
I think it's a wonderful miniature, despite the fact that my lack of practice 
gets noticed (particularly in the skin work).
Overall I enjoyed it a lot, and am really happy with how the lake turned out!

I wish everyone an excellent 2018!
Happy hobbying.
Cheers.