Sunday, June 21, 2020

Reaper Bones Kaladrax Reborn WIP Part 1

My current big miniature project - Reaper's Kaladrax Reborn. Getting to it has taken awhile. It was a backer reward from the first Reaper Bones Kickstarter. I finally found a paint scheme that inspired me to tackle the challenge. Besides, I want a horror-themed project to finish by Halloween and a giant undead dragon is a solid choice.

Time to awaken a sleeping giant undead dragon?

Kaladrax Reborn is a whole lot of plastic. The base alone is a hefty chunk of whatever formula Reaper used for its early Bones line. Painting it in sections makes it easier to reach everything. It also divides the work into manageable chunks.

That's a whole lot of plastic. I'm gonna need a bigger brush.

I acquired Kaladrax Reborn as a Kickstarter reward from the Reaper Miniatures Bones: An Evolution Of Gaming Miniatures Kickstarter. It was the first of many Kickstarters by Reaper Miniatures and the one that launched Reaper's Bones line. Kaladrax Reborn was a $10 USD add on that later retailed for $75 USD - the price increase reflected the scaling issue that came up during production. Internet rumor suggests that there was a miscommunication between Reaper and the company that was manufacturing the Bones miniatures at the time. The miscommunication resulted in Kaladrax Reborn being made at roughly 200% of the intended scale. Mine showed up on my doorstep back in the summer of 2013. Kaladrax Reborn is out of production at this time.

That's a hefty base. I'm not worried about the figure falling over.

The main obstacle to starting this project - other than simple procrastination - was a lack of inspiration. Most of the color schemes I've seen for this piece looked underwhelming. Black for the undercoat, off-white for the skeleton, red for the fleshy bits, brown and gray for the base - a perfectly functional color scheme for an undead figure, but not rewarding enough to me for the effort. Kaladrax Reborn would become a centerpiece of my collection due to its sheer size. When I finally committed to putting paint on this critter, I wanted something different.

Dry fitting the main body and painted legs on the base.

I found a couple of visually distinct color schemes on Deviantart. The first depicts Kaladrax Reborn imbued with frost magic. As much as I like the blue color scheme, it isn't quite what I wanted. I'll keep the idea in mind if I find myself painting a figure with cold powers, though. The second has Kaladrax Reborn glowing with necrotic energies. It's a familiar color scheme - green is widely used for undead figures - but I never considered applying it to this figure. Maybe I'm not alone in that oversight, since I don't recall seeing it used on any other Kaladrax Reborn projects. I'm not sure if I can execute the green glowing effect with the same level of skill, but I'm giving it a try.

Close up of base with Reaper 02608 Tyden, Barbarian. Note the scale difference when comparing the skulls with Tyden's head.

I approached the hunk of plastic that serves as a base like a terrain piece. The paint scheme is straightforward - a mix of FolkArt Glass & Tile Medium and black paint as a primer/undercoat layer, gray for most the stone areas, brown for the rock areas, some FolkArt 420 Linen to highlight the raised surfaces, and a dark wash to bring out the details. I was surprised by the number of skulls sculpted on the base - I had to check that I hadn't gotten it mixed up with a GW product somehow. The size of the skulls are a telltale of the scaling issue that Reaper ran into with this figure. They are about twice the size of a human skull at 28mm scale. The wash gives the base a shiny appearance, but the clear sealant I'm planning on spraying on after final assembly should knock it down.

Skeleton color scheme test. Why do I have a sudden craving for chicken wings?

Here are two of Kaladrax Reborn's legs. These attach to the base and support the rest of the figure. I decided to use these to test a color scheme for the rest of the skeleton. They are the lowest parts of the figure other than the base, so any mistakes should be less noticeable. At this time, they just have a layer of FolkArt 420 Linen brushed over a mix of FolkArt Glass & Tile Medium and Reaper 09199 Russet Brown working as the primer/base layer. I'm putting off a highlight or wash layer until I have more of the figure done.

Hip/rear leg/main body dry fit.

I'd like to get started on the main body piece, but the way the figure fits goes together suggests otherwise. The hip parts block off areas of the main body. I'll paint the hip parts and remaining legs next so they will be ready for fitting after I paint the main body.

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