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Space Skeleton: Citadel LE9

SpaceSkeleton8

Mr Saturday recently sent me this fun old model and last weekend I decided that getting it painted for the LAF “Future Wars Painting Club” would be fun.  

GINGER and Roger Buck:L Space Skeleton

GINGER and Roger Buck: Space Skeleton

My painting progress has been a bit erratic recently so tackling something from slightly left field struck me as a good idea.  I figured that it might help me to get back on track in terms of output and painting routine.

L to R: Space Santa, Space Skeleton, Space Eunuch

L to R: Space Santa, Space Skeleton, Space Eunuch

Like the Space Santa that I painted a few weeks ago, the Space Skeleton is some sort of limited GW release from the late eighties.  I never had a whole lot of interest in the model until Asslessman over at the Leadplague painted a nice Space Skeleton as part of a warband that he brought to Bring Out Your Lead in Foundry last year.  Seeing the heavily undercut and unusual model first hand made me enthusiastic to get one for myself.

Just a glowing skeleton, not a green glowing skeleton, but you get the idea.

Just a glowing skeleton, not a green glowing skeleton, but you get the idea.

Popular culture dictates that space suits come in three colour varieties: white, red and orange.  As the other miniature that I painted for the LAF FWPC is primarily orange and Asslessmans models is red I decided to go for a white suit.  As most (all?) of the versions of this model that I have seen painted feature a bone coloured skeleton, I figured that I would go for a full on pulp look, with a bright green radioactive/Scooby Doo g-g-g-ghost look for the bones.  This also had the benefit of giving good contrast with the suit.

"Blight" fornm the Batman Beyond Cartoon was an influence on the scheme.

“Blight” frnm the Batman Beyond Cartoon was also an influence on the colour scheme.

The skeletons of the incinerated victims in the Mars Attacks movie kept popping into my head during painting too.

The skeletons of the incinerated victims in the Mars Attacks movie kept popping into my head during painting too.

EDIT: as the Astronaut from the Heavy Metal movie has been mentioned in several places, I have added an image of that guy too.

Heavy Metal Astronaut having his face melted by green glowing stuff.

Heavy Metal Astronaut having his face melted by green glowing stuff.

EDIT: Roebeast over at the Magical House of Sunshine put the below image together.  I quite like it and plan to put poster size versions of it up on some of my terrain.

Image provided by Roebeast.

Image provided by Roebeast.

As is often the case when I am trying to get back into painting after a bit of a slump, I feel like I rushed a few parts f the model that I could have painted a little better.  Its all part of the process of course and at least the model is finished and ready to game with.  Its not like the paint job is disastrous or anything anyway.

A pair of wrenches.

A pair of wrenches.

I am still uncertain about the decision to paint the wrench a similar colour to red suit detailing.  I considered other colours, but settled on the familiar red wrench colour so as not to disrupt the rest of the palette.

The torn twentieth century space suit is slightly unusual for what could arguably be described as a 40k miniature.  The fact that the suit contains a skeleton wielding a massive wrench is slightly less unusual in the context, amusingly enough.

SpaceSkeleton4

I figure that I will use the model in game as some sort of of possessed thrall or daemonhost for a Radical Ordo Xenos Inquisitor.  Maybe the guy was such a top class Geller field engineer that the Inquisitor couldnt bear to see him die, and so bound him in eternal servitude or something jolly like that.

SpaceSkeleton3Edited to fix typos and spelling errors.  I really shouldnt post after my bedtime…

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24 Responses

  1. Cracking stuff. The green is very effective. Wasn’t there a glowing green skeleton in the heavy metal movie?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Conrad, it was a fun model to paint.

      I have only ever watched a portion of the Heavy Metal movie – I was sober and my patience for that sort of viewing isnt what it was back in college days – but an astronaut gets melted by some green thing in a sealed box or something early on in the film IIRC.

      Heavy Metal Melting Astronaut

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  2. Wow that is just lovely. A truly great figure from the old days! I have to admit I’ve been sold on green skeletons since I painted a figure (another vintage, the Hero Quest Necromancer) as “Skeletor” from the He Man cartoons. But this one is much better, I think. If there are parts you rushed, I sure can’t see them.

    Ps, now that i think about it, Kinch is on to something with the Heavy Metal connection. Heavy Metal meets ‘Eavy Metal? 😉

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    • I also painted the Heroquest Chaos Sorcerer as Skeletor. The sculpt almost demands it I think 🙂

      The rushed parts are still perfectly fit for purpose, its just the usual bout of canvas slashing from me really. I find making the call on the quality versus output balance difficult, which means accepting certain rushed elements in the interest of increased output. Increased output makes me feel better about the hobby in general, so I tend to lean that way… which leads to some canvas slashing.

      See the response to Conrads post above for the Heavy Metal reference as I see it. Im no Heavy Metal expert though, so maybe there is more that I am missing.

      As ever, thanks for the feedback NSA 🙂

      Like

  3. Brilliant paintjob on an awesome model!

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    • Thanks gnoks 🙂

      The sculpt is actually really nice. The skull is deeply inset in the helmet in a way not often seen (I suspect that it would demolish rubber moulds pretty fast). That makes the model look a little unusual and feel a little different to paint too. Its a unique and pleasantly peculiar model.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Lovely just lovely !

    I think most of us who painted that model wondered how to cope with painting the skeleton AND his suit white without making it look dull, I opted for a red suit and you opted for a green bone colour.
    I realy love your solution because it immediately gives a background, I can imaine an old atsronaut dumped in a toxic junkyard and brought back to life by the nasty products around. (or smething of the sort). The Scooby dooesque sie of it is also a particularly nice touch considering the kind if game you and lots of us fancy.

    PS : Thanks for the plug too 😉

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    • Credit where credit is due JB, I wouldnt really even have thought about this miniature only for seeing yours.

      Its a unique model and the sculpting style seems oddly three dimensional due to the heavy undercuts (obviously all miniatures are 3D but in the context of a single piece casting from the 80s, Im sure that you know what I mean). That reason alone made it interesting to paint. Plus its a skeleton in a spacesuit, y’know?

      In game terms I definitely plan to use this guy as some sort of mute hench-thing for an uncaring aristocratic, Machiavellian Inquisitorial type. I might foreshadow the eventual appearance of the Inquisitor by including the Skeleton in a few games beforehand.

      Thanks for the feedback 🙂

      Like

  5. Damn fine job sir. The green and white work just great together, and the wrench sets off the green on the bone nicely. I actually love the wrench.

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    • Thanks Mr S (and again for donating the skinny guy in the first place). Im happy enough with the painting on the wrench itself, its just that maybe it should have been a different colour to break things up a little.

      The issue is that by including green and red in the palette my remaining options were limited. Add to that that the definitive white spacesuit look incorporates red trim and that the definitive look for that design of wrench is a battered and chipped red and I had literally and figuratively painted myself into a corner.

      Still, its very from a disaster or anything, its a fun model.

      Thanks for the feedback.

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      • Well, you managed to paint a model red, green, and white in December, and not have it look “Christmas-y”. So you’ve got that going for you, which is nice 😉

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        • Its true. The astronaut look is iconic enough to not just look like a Xmas version of something, despite using the same palette. The green was the risky part.

          I considered using electric blue instead of green, but its just not the same. Radioactive space skeletons are green, everyone knows that, there is no way around it 😉

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  6. I’m not sure I can really add to these comments, but I’ll just say this, what a f****** fantastic paint job you’ve done!!!!

    Clever colour selection for the bone, there’s not too many options to chose from with bone is there?

    Good show old boy….. good show.

    Like

    • Thanks very much head head, Im glad that you liked it.

      Justifying why the corpse might be able to move around and do things had to mean one of three things in my book: 1) its a zombie (which it cant be because it hasnt any meat) 2) its magic, (not cricket in my pseudo-scientific gaming narratives) or 3) its space radioactive (which has to be shown via a glowing green colour in almost all circumstances. There are regulations which must be adhered to). Option “3” was the most appropriate.

      Although in game terms he may end up being the product of daemonic magic in the end anyway 😉

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      • Isn’t sci-fi “magic” (in eg. the WH40k universe) really just very, very exotic transdimensional physics? GW themselves are not very rigorous but if you can at least wave your hands and say “because the Warp” then it’s not really any different than the writers on Star Trek waving their hands and saying “because dilithium” – and most people consider Star Trek to be legitimate sci-fi.

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        • Agreed, it amounts to the same thing.

          When it comes to telling stories with my toy soldiers, I try not to close too many doors regarding how and why things are the way they are. Ill mine any cliché for a cheap laugh with my buddies while I push the lead around making ray gun sounds. If I want a time-travelling cyborg wizard with a chainsaw then I can liberally apply handwavium to “explain” it. If I want the game to feel “magic” then I will push it that way and vice versa.

          I enjoy Star Trek but not for a second would I regard it as any more or less legitimate than say Star Wars or The Terminator. All of those are pulp as far as I am concerned, entertaining nonsense.

          I do rather a pseudo scientific explanation for my space stories over a mystical one though. I suppose it depends on views of spirituality and how it interacts with the measurable universe.

          And y’know, green radioactive space skeletons. Liberal application of handwavium is appropriate 🙂

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  7. There is not much to add to looking at all the praise, so I just add mine and say that I – too – think it is a smashimg paintjob with good selection of colours. The mini is quite unique and reminds me of an Iron Maiden cover with Eddie in a space suit. Thus: Heavy Metal Battle Cry! Hail, hail, hail!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks D&B 🙂

      Its definitely a pretty unusual miniature, while still being a nice sculpt. It was a lot of fun to paint and I am looking forward to getting in a few games using it.

      Like

  8. Are you sure he’s not a cron in a space suit ? lol look great mate & it sure was kind of Mr S to hand him over, I can only think that he couldn’t find a way of working him in to his cult army.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Conceptually it wouldnt be too hard to associate the model with Necrons if I wanted, but I like to keep the Necrons as a way to get my Terminator, evil robot buzz rather than whatever this thing is 😀

      It certainly was generous of Mr Saturday to donate the miniature. I think that he kept a copy of the model for himself too. Mr S has a large miniature mountain all awaiting attention, with far more projects planned than just a ‘stealer coven.

      Thanks for the feedback Frank 🙂

      Like

  9. Nice work here. I guess it just goes to show that eating Radium just isn’t a great choice, even if you’re going out into the radioactive solar system.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. The way you patterned the wear on the wrench after a real, well-used wrench is an inspiration to me. I’ve got to start observing more everyday items as I go about my old painting. It really shows how observation and artwork go hand in hand. Hats off to you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Matthew.

      I tend to focus on trying to find the quickest shortcuts to getting a miniature painted once I have an idea of how I want it to look. The colours chosen are regularly informed by how easy I find them to apply rather than artistic merit.

      The wrench was a convenient area to test a sponge technique for weathering that I want to try on a larger scale soon. Im not very confident in my weathering skills so a little bit of research seemed like an obvious first step. My painted miniatures are definitely not realistic looking, but an occasional nod to real life helps to them to visually make sense I think.

      Thanks for the feedback.

      Like

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