Finally, after over a year of starting this blog I can begin to present my Drukhari. A big problem I’ve always had was getting decent looking pictures since this color scheme makes heavy use of dark, muted colors and whites that weren’t playing well with my older iPad’s camera and how I was lighting the models. The pictures just ended up looking either washed out, or details would appear too dark. Not only did I try a new lighting setup, but I also took the time to dig into the “Pro” mode on my (new-ish) phone’s camera, which is probably really basic by any actual professional standards, but allows me to tweak settings my iPad didn’t have. I’m still familiarizing myself with it, but I think we have progress…
I’ve built three boxes of Kabalite Warriors with the mindset that if they’re taken, they’ll probably be on a transport. As an example, here’s a 10-man squad that I could take in a Raider, with a Sybarite front and center and a Warrior with a Splinter Cannon to the left. Even though these models are coming up on a decade old, they’re still a huge reason why I love the Drukhari model range. Compared to the old sculpts, they look less like 1980s Saturday morning cartoon villains and much more like the cold, ruthless space pirates they’re often portrayed as in the fluff. Seriously, they just look mean.
I’m also a fan of how a fan of how easy it is to achieve dynamic looking poses with the Warrior and Wych kits, not to mention how interchangeable bits are across the entire model range. Hell, with a little work, you can make “free” Warriors and Wyches from bits you get from the Venom and Raider kits.
Here are two 5-man squads, each led by a Sybarite, that can be taken in a pair of Venoms. I know you can’t take heavy weapons in 5-man squads, so consider them stand-ins for Blaster wielding Trueborn. I just wanted to get more of my normal Warriors into a picture before moving on.
I had finished a lot of these models back in the early 2010’s, but having looked them over recently after a couple years of growth in my hobby career, there were a few things that bugged me that could do with some touch ups. Nothing as drastic as a full army repaint like I did with my Orks and Craftworld Eldar, but having a more expansive collection of paints, better brushes and learning better brush control, I felt I could go back and make certain bits pop a little more.
The most prominent feature that I felt could do with some fixing were their tabards. I think my old method was something like Rakarth Flesh, washed with Agrax Earthshade, layered up to Screaming Skull and/or Pallid Wych Flesh. Can’t remember exactly, but the end result was pretty dull, as you can see from the two “original” models on the right. The two on the left were my first attempts at finding a balance between how much of the washes I wanted to show through. Eventually I did settle on the following approach, which looks a lot more like flayed skin than it did previously. Why you would want to wear that around your waist I don’t know, but Dark Eldar are gonna Dark Eldar I guess:
- [Basecoat] Rakarth Flesh
- [Wash] Reikland Fleshshade & Carroburg Crimson — I did these at the same time just to save time.
- [Layer] Thinned down Rakarth Flesh, leaving the washes in the folds and recesses.
- [Layer] 1:1 Rakarth Flesh & Flayed One Flesh, again thinned slightly to smooth out transitions.
- [Highlight] Flayed One Flesh
- [Fine Highlight] Pallid Wych Flesh
This helps create a really nice contrast to the ghostly, blue-ish green armor that I’ll get into in my next Drukhari related post. The bones by the way were simply Administratum Grey, with a highlight of Deepkin Flesh — colder colors that help them stand out from the now more earthy looking tabards.
Another thing I wanted to experiment with, especially before I give my Wyches their own makeover, is tribal face paint. I’m thinking very much the Pictish Warriors from the movie Centurion, especially Etain played by Olga Kurylenko. It’s pretty basic stuff, but streaks of blue on pale skin does a pretty good job of making it pop a little more, plus I like the idea of there being something savage and tribal about the Dark Eldar, despite being all fancy and high society in Commorragh, or at least aspiring to it.
Kind of hard to make out in those pictures even when you click on them and enlarge, but the initial line was a thinned down Hoeth Blue, followed by the darker Alaitoc Blue. Another shade(s) I had in mind was Ahriman Blue to Thousand Sons Blue. Also no, the top knot guy doesn’t have any face paint. He looks cool as is.
Phew. Even though this blog is just a casual, side thing, it’s been bugging me that there’s been no Drukhari representation after all this time. I’m glad I can finally share bits of this army. Next up is the guy in charge — the Archon.