Sunday, March 15, 2015

Anatomy 101

Nick Bibby continues to astound me. He shouldn't- the dude has a full time gig as a not-miniature-but-like-museum-kind-art sculptor. But those brief years he spent at the Citadel design studio needs to be celebrated. He is, in every way, a master of the craft.

I recently picked up the AD&D Minotaur he did back around 1987. It may not knock the Spined Dragon off its post as the greatest mini of all time, but it's not far behind.

Citadel AD&D Minotaur ADD86 by Nick Bibby

This model had two other variants that I am not such a huge fan of, but this one in particular is, to my eye, just about perfect. The thing that really sets it apart for me is Bibby's attention to "realistic" anatomy. The musculature is spot-on, and the pose has a sense of heft that, I believe, must be very hard to achieve.
Are you lookin' at my bum? Note the zit on the right cheek there. . .
There are veins in the arm muscles that my camera (and my inadequate paintbrush skills) don't entirely pick up. There are several pimples, great fur texture, realistic growth scars on the horns. . . it's just a really, really great sculpt that I can't recommend enough.

Early on in my painting of this fella, I had dreams of an homage to the classic version that Colin Dixon painted that is featured in Heroes for Wargames. I found out, however, two important facts:

1. I am nowhere in the ballpark as good as Colin was at painting flesh (actually, I kinda knew this one already).
2. Pale flesh tones look a lot better in pictures than they do in 3D.

After getting a tone pretty close to Dixon's classic original, I decided it was not deep enough for my tastes, so I added a few dark brown and reddish glazes to make mine more tanned. Like a minotaur not unaccustomed to spending time down by the shore. I settled for adding the rock path and Mario mushroom to the base to pay my respect.

This one will feature as a mercenary hire for Skulldred games in my house. I can't wait to come up with stats for this model. :)

I hope your own leaden pursuits continue unabated, brethren (and sistren!). Take care, all.


  1. It is a wonderful sculpt indeed and as you say, Nick's attention for detail is abolutely mindbowing. i really like the rich colours you achieved on the skin here.

    The mushroom is also a ver y nice and fitting addition ;)

  2. Was always more of a Grenadier/John Dennett fan where 1980's minis are concerned, but I do like this guy. As you say, a really great sculpt.

    Fine painting on your part. You definitely nailed the flesh-tone.

    1. Thanks very much, Finch. My homework for the day: research this John Dennett fella you mentioned. Any sculpts in particular to look at?

    2. The juggernaut you painted was some of his work (along with many others from the initial Monster Manuscript box sets). I'm partial to many of the dragons he did for Grenadier. His beholder can be seen in all its glory here:

  3. It's a great model and you've done a fantastic job on him. This also reminds me that a Citadel Minotaur of eighties vintage is on my want list.

    1. The Citadel Minotaurs went very quickly from really well-proportioned (like this AD&D model) to gargantuan-ly huge, much like the transition the orcs/orks went through in the early 90's. The eighties vintage you are looking at is definitely the right time frame, in my opinion. Good luck!