Progress on the Chanthara project has been slow but there has been progress! Since last time there has been a slight change of schedule, in that the ALEPH Yadu with Multirifle has been prioritised over the Yu Jing Daoying sniper. A particular piece by Chanthara inspired me, the style of which was more applicable to the Yadu than the Daoying. The Yadu is also the easier model for me to paint.
The style of this piece, Creepy/M, is quite dull and dirty, setting it apart from most of the painted Aleph I’ve seen. A trend for painting robotic/armoured units is glowing LEDs or AV stalks but I shall not do this. My cyborgs shall have photoreceptors which do not emit any light. There is a risk they may appear too dull, so I shall apply subtle highlights and decals to offset this.
Chanthara’s decals tend to be in stark contrast, often in orange or yellow, so I shall need some very careful brushwork!
Painting the ALEPH Yadu
I’ve been using a mix of GW, P3 and Army Painter paints. Lately there’s been less use of GW as the pots keep drying up, so I’m salvaging those I can by pouring them into spare dropper bottles from my Army Painter set. I’ll signify which range each colour is from by adding a GW, P3 or AP in parentheses.
Starting with a matt black (AP) spray undercoat, to match the Creepy/M cyborg I basecoated the jacket of the Yadu with Army Green(AP) dulled down with some black. The armour sections on the legs and the head were based with Ash Grey(AP). The hex pattern on the leggings and around parts of the waist I left mostly black but with some slight colouring with Angel Green (AP) to try and maintain the dark, dirty look as best I could. Other armour sections like the back of the helmet, edges of the shin pads, the backpack, and the case of the Multirifle were based with Coal Black (P3).
Green is the uniting colour of Creepy/M, so I added lowlights and shading to the armour sections with a thin wash of a mix of Army Green (AP) and Thamar Black (P3). I thinned the paints a lot, very close to the consistency of water, so that they wouldn’t be too intrusive on the layer of white I’d paint over the top. For the jacket I shaded the recesses with a thinned mix of Army Green (AP) and Oak Brown (AP).
Highlights and Maintaining Style
I added highlights by blending Matt White or Ash Grey (or sometimes a mix of the two) to the base colours. For the lighter armour sections I simply built up thin layers of Matt White. I highlit (highlighted?) the pouches and belts by adding a thin edge of Coal Black (P3) as I didn’t want them to stand out too much from the rest of the underclothing; combat accessories like these are often dark, dull colours.
At this point I think I could have made the jacket darker by adding black and grey to the base coat but overall I think the Yadu is headed in the right direction. I may have to take some liberties with the highlighting and overall palette as I fear the Yadu may otherwise end up looking half-finished. That’s the conundrum with directly adapting Chanthara’s style on Creepy/M; it looks indimidating and characterful on paper but may not look striking or engaging on a wargames miniature. The results could be completely different if I painted a group of say, 3 Yadu looking battered and worn as the theme would be more apparent but for this solitary mini I may prefer it to be slightly more eye-catching. There is more work to be done!
Perhaps you’d like to try this, yourself? If so you can find the Yadu unit box here. You can usually find the Coldfront Yadu I’ve used in the Infinity Split Box Service section.
I also highly recommend checking out the artwork of Nivanh Chanthara over on ArtStation; you may be inspired!