Friday, December 29, 2017

Asurmen - First of the Phoenix Lords (A Conversion Journey)

Having recently read the Asurmen: Hand of Asuryan novel, I felt inspired to include the model in my Eldar army. The problem was, the model was old enough for an M18 movie; the dated sculpt also meant that the model itself was very two dimensional, and not in keeping with the more dynamic poses of the current Eldar range. So I started this project to modernise the model slightly,and hopefully make it more resilient.

I started off by chopping off the easy to reach bits that I wanted to replace, namely the sword, and the outstretched Avenger catapult. They were also some of the parts which made the model two dimensional, since they stuck out parallel to the main body.

To replace the sword, I kitbashed a Harlequin Troupe Master power sword hand, an outstretched Harlequin's Kiss arm, and a shuriken pistol, gluing it all together. It was pretty easy, just chop off the "needle" bit of the Harlequin's Kiss, and chop off the "pistol grip" part of the shuriken pistol, leaving the snub nose.

How the conversion looked at Stage 1 of the process. I also removed the head, trying very hard to keep the Avenger targeter on the shoulder, and cut off the model's left leg. This would aid in reposing the model later.

This picture shows progress on the model with the left arm conversion. I tried to keep the left arm similar to the original pose, with slight adjustments to the angle for aesthetic purposes. The left arm was also kitbashed from the Harlequin kit, using an extended left arm, another Harlequin's Kiss wrist, and a left fist from a shuriken pistol hand. The shuriken pistol from that hand was then pinned and glued to the Harlequin's Kiss wrist mount, similar to the right arm conversion.

A close up of the head shows the point at which I pinned the re-positioned head to the neck. Had to greenstuff in the gaps.

I thought the model was coming together nicely at this stage, though I would have to further drill and cut away the excess resin between the cape and the loincloth. It was at this stage where a mishap occurred and I sacrificed blood and skin cells to my hobby knife -.-

The sacrifice was worth it though, as the pinned arms and removal of excess material slowly come together to bring the converted model to life.

The finished base model. As shown in the earlier pictures, I cut up and re-posed the left leg to make it look more dynamic. The main posing idea was that Asurmen was standing on a raised area, shooting at onrushing enemies.

The model was placed on a wraithbone-ish looking base, as a test. After the conversion, I realised that Asurmen wouldn't fit on the standard 25mm base anymore, hence the larger base. Given that his rules involve providing a bubble buff to models near him, I may have to find a way to mark where the 25mm starts and stops for tournaments, or dismount him from the scenic base and put him on something a little more mundane.

A cameo by Eldrad, who functions as a counterweight while my attempt at a greenstuff sashimono type banner dries.

The nearly completed model, with gaps filled in with green stuff, and a little sash added to hide some rough edges. Pardon the resin dust.

The back banner/sashimono was a bit too short for the pin, but i eventually got around it by removing/repositioning the bottom rod. These images are quite good illustrations of how a simple chop/reposition can help liven up an old model by making it more dynamic and 3D.

As I mentioned above, I needed to find a way to make the model more tournament legal, and I decided to try and make the model and base modular. The pins in Asurmen's base are long enough that they hold the model firmly on the scenic base, which means I may not need to glue him down, and can shift him to a 25mm base. Still needs testing though. The other alternative is to mark out the 25mm circle around him using dead enemies and hobby grass. Tempting tempting...

So, that's a quick journey through my second attempt at converting a model. Now to painting this guy!

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