I have spent the past couple of nights getting the rest of my Iron Snakes miniatures prepared for painting. I am not sure if this is out of any real necessity, or just a type of procrastination. The painting of the Sternguard is going well, but I think I just needed to do something different for a while. Having said that, I have still managed to finish the designs on two shields, both of which are a little different to the original design brief.
The snake is depicted from a birds-eye view and has the tip of its tail emerging from the other side of the shield (this was a spur of the moment thing, but it made me smile, so I kept it). The lion I was going to do looked very Lion King, so I canned it. I have replaced it with a stylised scorpion, which was a little horror to paint. I don't know if it shows up at all in the photos, but there is shield detail underlying the scorpion's body that made it sooo hard to maintain a flowing brush-stroke. I'll have to see how it looks on the finished miniature, as I may choose another shield design without the detail in that position and repaint it.
The character himself is inspired by Ajax, the son of Telamon, from Homer's Illiad and Odyssey. He is described as being of great stature, colossal frame and strongest of all the Achaeans: the "bulwark of the Achaeans". The film Troy didn't do much for Homeric mythology, but it did give us this depiction of Ajax:
Ajax is famed for carrying a colossal shield and being undefeated during the war at Troy, but failed in his bid to possess Achilles' armour after his death (that honour went to Odysseus himself), and fell on his sword broken hearted. In the underworld he refuses to speak to Odysseus for the same reason.
The Contemptor Dreadnought still needs some work, particularly on the extended left arm near the shoulder. Apart from that, I really like the way this Dreadnought is turning out. In case you are wondering, he is crushing a Fallen Angel under his foot. Now that is going to take some fluff to explain...
See you across the table,