"I kill where I wish and none dare resist. I laid low the warriors of old and their like is not in the world today. Then I was but young and tender. Now I am old and strong, strong strong."
― Smaug, The Hobbit
No miniature collection is really complete until it has a dragon. I've attempted a couple before but lost interest before they were finished and came close with the rescue project on the Carnosaur. But this summer I rediscovered my mojo - Middle Earth Mojo, as it happens - and so I decided to finish off in a grand fashion.
This is the GW Middle Earth Dragon. It's been another of those on-off projects since before the kids were born.
Here's the final construction. As you can see there's the usual horrific gaps you get with large lead models.
I'm quite happy with the gap filling on this one. As you can see, once undercoating the large ones on the haunches are more or less seamless.
I also sculpted some new, shorter, blunter horns. The horns that came with the kit were quite long and I felt they spoilt the shape of the head - see here; I went with something that helped the bullish, squat look of the model.
I was also not a huge fan of the GW suggested colour scheme. Smaug was certainly red (with a jewel-encrusted underbelly) but the Lord of the Rings films tried to make everything look very natural. So I wanted a colour scheme with a certain level of verisimilitude. Luckily, Tolkien himself sketched what he though a dragon of his Middle Earth should look like:
So with the colour scheme set, time to crack out the airbrush.
And here's the basecoats done
Then I started adding some dark glazes to shade:
And some lightter glazes to pick out specific scales
Then a red glaze to help with the fleshy, leatherly look of the wings and also to match the red of Tolkien's sketch.
Red glaze in the mouth and Tamiya transparent red for the tongue.
Final highlights on the skin
And then the horns and spines.
And a couple more shots with the good camera to let you see the colours more accurately.
Overall a nice little project to finish the summer on. Next up... Not quite sure, actually. Stay Tuned....