#oldorcs finis

My #oldorcs submission took me longer than anticipated; after all, it’s just one orc model. I should have been able to complete that in an hour or so. But the more I looked at it, the more I put off actually beginning to work on it. I really wanted to capture the Oldhammer painting style; a style I haven’t used since, well, since the Oldhammer days of my youth. I painted the basic green skin tone and left the model to sit for a bit while I prepped my Vamp for Vampifan, the Red Duke.

I’ve been having an odd sleep schedule lately, and I found myself thinking about him at 3 am. It was a night of soaking rain here. Usually that helps me sleep, but I had Ork on the brain. I got up and went to my painting table, and I stared. I stared at the Ork for 15 minutes or so, while the rain came down on my bulkhead. I stared, and he stared back. And then I knew what I was going to do.

I decided to make him a Death Skull; because I’ve always been partial to their blue facepaint. Once I did that, the rest of the model came pretty quickly.

When I painted my Warhammer Orc and Goblin army decades ago, I used the same orc skin recipe on almost all the models: Snot Green base, Goblin Green tone, Scorpion Green highlight (all are avialable through Coat D’Arms nowadays). I didn’t want to do that here, so instead I used a base of Citadel Caliban Green, followed by Reaper’s Turf Green and Meadow Green. This resulted in a slightly darker skin tone than I liked, so I once again added some Scorpion Green highlights. For the blue face paint, I based it in Vallejo Prussian Blue, highlighted with Reaper’s Dragon Blue, and then a final highlight of Vallejo Andrea Blue.

The rest was pretty easy: I just went back to the brightly-colored John Blanche/Mike McVey Oldhammer palette that was the norm when I first started playing. You can see plenty of examples of it in old White Dwarf and Dragon magazines, if you have them; or of course any old codices, catalogs and army books of the time. Barring that, there’s always the Internet…

This was a fun little diversion and my first Instagram painting challenge. Thanks to Old Man Paints for hosting it! There are prizes to be won, but they weren’t my motivation. I really just needed the kick in the pants to get back to hobbying.

Now, back to the bloodsucker…

12 thoughts on “#oldorcs finis

  1. Dave Stone

    Excellent old school Ork Keith, you’ve captured the old style painting perfectly. Some of that old style painting I miss, byt don’t miss having to wear shades to look at some peoples models ! LOL
    It’s good to reflect back on this style though

    1. The Angry Piper Post author

      Thanks, Dave. I got nostalgic looking at my old Ultramarines; all of which are “pristine” with not a smudge of battle grime on them, and painted like the just stepped off the pages of the 2nd edition codex. It was a different time back then, all bright colors (mostly red); not as “Grimdark” as it is now. This model was from a previous era…I wanted to make sure he got the respect he was owed. As you know, Orks are all about respect and dignity.

  2. Dick Garrison

    Really nice work Keith, I too painted my first Ork’s and marines in pretty bright colours (some might say my figs are still rather bright!), I came across some old chaos Space Marines a while back (before I sold then on a bring and buy) and they were very bright, purples and reds mainly, I still use those colour a lot to be honest , just toned down a bit.

    Still a really nice stroll down memory lane, and as I said very evocative paintjob, best of luck with the competition too by the way.

    Cheers Roger.

    1. The Angry Piper Post author

      Thanks, Roger. I think it was just what I needed, a fun and quick painting project. Nothing says “Hakuna Matata” better than Oldhammer Orks, am I right?

  3. Matt

    Oooh, nice one, very Oldhammer indeed! A great paint job on a mini full of character, and he’d fit in well with an Oldhammer army despite being painted in 2020.

    I remember when GW’s house style suddenly went all “bright colours, lots of red”. I tried doing some of my Ultramarines in that style and they didn’t fit into my existing darker-blue army. And I hated those red bolter covers.

    1. The Angry Piper Post author

      Hey! Watch it! All my Ultramarines have red bolter covers, red power swords, and red tank turrets! AS IT SHOULD BE!!!! (At least for an army painted in 1992, as mine was).

      1. Matt

        Ha 🙂 And let’s not forget sergeants suddenly getting red helmets, which made them look like walking zits; I didn’t discover the reason for that till around 2017, when I read the Horus Heresy novel Know No Fear.

          1. Matt

            It’s thanks to an Ultramarines sergeant called Aeonid Thiel. At the start of the novel he’s going to be punished for theorizing battles between Space Marines; he’s marked for censure by having red paint dumped over his helmet and armour. Once the Word Bearers’ assault on Calth and the Ultramarines begins, he quickly realises that the traitors know exactly what the Ultras will do in any situation thanks to Roboute Guilliman making them predictable in battle, so he starts using more out-of-the-box thinking. Skip forward 10,000 years and Ultramarine sergeants have red helmets in his honour.

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