Monday 20 July 2015

Project Nurgle part 16

As I said in my first posting for ‘Project Nurgle’, I’d been quietly pondering the idea of painting a Nurgle themed mini for a while. When Games Workshop previewed Gutrot Spume, and the Putrid Blightkings, at Warhammer Fest, they had me hooked and reeled me in right there and then!

It’s almost always like that for me. I may have the germ of an idea for a project but seeing a mini I want to paint is the thing that sparks things off. Further to the mini itself, Games Workshop’s background info on Gutrot fuelled my imagination and gave me the idea of creating a nautical theme for this project.

With Gutrot Spume now finished, and at such a key point in the project, it’s no bad thing to reflect on it’s origins before I move on to the next stage.

I set myself specific goals for every project I undertake. They are a useful way of pushing myself to try new things, and to develop and refine my skills; but they shouldn’t be taken too seriously. First and foremost mini painting is my hobby and it’s meant to be an enjoyable pastime not a task. Secondly a project can often develop in unexpected ways and the goals should never hold back creativity.

My goals for ‘Project Nurgle were as follows:


  • To develop a distinct ‘nautical Nurgle’ style for the project. The aim here is to come up with something original that still fits with the established look and feel of Nurgle;


  • To become familiar with ScaleColour paints from Scale 75 and their uses;


  •  To ‘go back to my roots’ and explore a strong palette of contrasting saturated colours in an up-to-date context.


  • To pull out all the stops and try to paint my ‘best’ mini yet!

Broadly speaking I’d say ‘so far so good’! The use of colour is crucial to achieving all of my goals, so it’s vital to develop the right colour palette for this project. From the onset I knew that green would be a key colour – it is Nurgle we’re talking about and you can stretch things only so far! Red was a likely choice for a contrasting colour and not inappropriate bearing in mind all those sores and diseased wounds. I also felt that with a nautical theme blues and blue/greens would feature in the palette.

So far so good but just picking a few likely colours isn’t enough. Those colour will have to work together to good effect providing both harmony and contrast as required. The colour in the shadows and highlights must be considered at an early stage in order to create a cohesive palette. All in all there was an awful lot to bear in mind as I wanted to create a complex and colourful palette; and, to be honest, I was having some difficulty getting my head around this in the early stages of the project.

The solution came, as it so often does, when I wasn’t directly looking for it. I always put together a folder of reference images and it was while I was looking up octopus pictures (for tentacle reference) that I discovered my colour palette.

The picture below became my inspiration for the overall balance between the red and blue/green shades. My aim was not to copy exactly but rather use the image as a starting point in developing my own colour scheme. It was particularly influential in my decision to use a light turquoise/blue as the base colour for the armour and then to shade it with deep greens.

The colour palette helps to reinforce the ‘nautical Nurgle’ style but the addition of a few customised details really help to sell the idea. I wanted the conversion work to be fairly minimal as I liked the mini but, I thought swapping the axe for a trident made a strong statement. This together with the addition of some barnacles, I think, really helps to sell the nautical theme. The base will be the single most nautical part of the project and is likely to make or break the piece.
I’m really looking forward to completing the base for Gutrot! The boat, water and tentacles will provide some interesting painting challenges and I think it’s going to be a lot of fun. The future looks likely to feature lots of texture and water effects and I’m almost certain that Nurglings are going to get in on the action at some point too!


  1. Lovely work David! I can see you really are getting along well with the scale colour paints. Your NMM looks dare i say it smoother and better than your GD winning Dark Eldar entry from last year. The colour pallette is spectacular! Really loving the nautical nurgle feel. Cant wait until the piece is finished :D

  2. Absolutely brilliant, I have followed since the beginning. Can't wait to see the end product,

  3. This is looking better each photo I come across, I really like the patterning on the tentacles, a really original take on them and the dripping slime adds that perfect extra detail. The colour palette is different, it looks good though, a bold choice that seems to be paying off. I'm looking forward to seeing it based up.