My first foray delved into the world of J.R.R. Tolkien. I wanted a dusky look that fit more closely with the professor's description of goblins in Middle-earth. For this attempt however, my inspiration came not from Tolkien but from the excitement surrounding the 40th anniversary of Dungeons and Dragons. I wanted a color scheme that would harken back to the early 80s when I first started playing. This is what I came up with...
For the miniature I chose a model from Hasslefree Miniatures. This little grinning goblin is called Dima (HFO007) and can be found in Hasslefree's Orcs and Goblins line. I liked the semi-old school style of the sculpt and thought he would be perfect for my old school color scheme.
I have a sizable collection of goblins from Otherworld Miniatures that would have served even better for the old school theme I was attempting. I wanted to save them though until I found the right goblin skin color so that the entire tribe will look somewhat homogeneous. So for now I will stick with Hasslefree's goblins for experimenting.
Now that I had my miniature I needed to decide on the paints I would use. To aid in the decision I pulled out my trusty copy of the original Monster Manual and flipped to the well-worn page describing goblins (hmm... I guess I fought many of them back in the day). On page 47 I found what I thought I remembered. There, goblin skin is described as ranging from "yellow through dull orange to brick red." Though the description would change in later editions (sounds like a subject for another blogger post), this was the goblin I had such fond memories of from those long ago days.
Shortly after reading the description in the Monster Manual I remembered a color photo depicting goblins with a similar color scheme. I wasn't sure where I saw it so I rummaged through my collection for hours. I finally found what I was looking for. There, on the cover of module N2 The Forest Oracle, were three goblins with a pretty close resemblance to what I envisioned in my mind. I then had both inspiration and an idea of the color scheme I wanted to use. It was time to paint.
For painting the skin I chose a medium brown for a base coat. I can't remember the Reaper color (maybe Intense Brown??) but it is the equivalent of GW's Bestial Brown. From there, I started layering in various shades of lighter browns mixed with tints of red, orange, and yellow. I made particularly heavy use of Saffron Sunset (09247) and Orange Brown (09201), both from Reaper. Highlighting was accomplished with Saffron Sunset mixed with various shades of yellow.
The rest of the miniature, including the garb, armor, and weapons was painted in rather drab colors to contrast with the skin tone. Greens and dark browns dominate the color scheme to help highlight the orange and yellow of the skin. The armor and weapons were heavily washed to knock down the shiny new look that so often breaks the character of this type of monster. After all, they should look like desperate scavengers and raiders and not like a knight in shinning armor. With that being said, now that I look at the photos on blogger, I need to go back and wash the helmet a few more times. It does look awfully shinny.
I am fairly happy with the outcome of this goblin and I think I'm close to finding the skin tone I want to use in the future. I think I will paint one more goblin and intensify the oranges a bit to see what happens. Afterwards a final decision will be made and the resulting color scheme applied to my waiting Otherworld Miniatures goblin tribe.
Anyone else use this style on their goblins? Any comments, hints, and/or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks for reading!