As regular readers will know, I have just come into the possession of Heroes for Wargames, a seminal publication from 1986, that focused on the rising popularity of fantasy wargaming, painting and modelling. The publication is packed with loads of stuff that will be of interest to the Oldhammer enthusiast; interviews, pictures of miniatures, dioramas and much, much more.
One of the things I found most interesting was the 'behind the scenes' photographs that the book contains. They give us a glimpse of what the studio looked like in the mid 80s. You get a sense of just how relaxed and creative the studio was at this time. The images also contain some fascinating detail going on in the background. It's quite rewarding to try and work out what the Citadel stalwarts are working on in any particular picture. I have a few theories... Have a squint and see if you agree or disagree with me.
This first image shows Aly Morrison working at his desk. I love the pile of lead lying in that cardboard box on the left, which reminds me of what Andy Craig told us how members of the studio having piles of miniatures several feet deep. Have a quick glance around his desk. Anyone recognise the sculpt stuck on a cork next to the lead pile? I wonder what he is doing to those bases? Filling in the slit or something more creative, any ideas?
Here we have Colin Dixon, the original Citadel figure painter, working at his desk. Anyone recognise that building from any of his many dioramas? If you look at what he is painting, and this is easier if you own a copy of the book, you can just make out the Heroic Fighters of the Known World models being worked on. He's even got the original artwork from the box next to him for reference!
|I believe that these are the very miniatures that Dixon is working on in the photograph above.|
|What the original painting above would later look like as packaging.|
And here we have the mighty John Blanche, though I am not sure who is watching him work over his shoulder, though Trish Morrison and Jes Goodwin are visible in the background. Here we can see Blanche busy working with an airbrush on a new piece of art. The piece, which is only in its early stages, could well be the famous painting of a mounted dwarf and ogre champion that was later used as the cover of Dwarf Wars published by Flame.
What do you eagle eyed readers think?
|The finished product. This is the painting that I believe that John Blanche was working on the the photograph above was taken.|
Looking like he has just stepped off the set of a Wham! video shhot, Goodwin is snapped at his desk working on what he does best, sculpting miniatures. A surprisingly spartan desk compared to many of the others, but if you look closely you can see some greens being worked up on the table before him. Is it just me, or could the green closest to his hand (the one facing forwards with two diagonal brass rods sticking out sideways) be a WIP Slambo, the chaos warrior of chaos warriors?
|Here's a WIP shot of my Slambo. Could the original green be on the desk in the photograph above?|
The next bench along looks the complete opposite. A cluttered mess, a sure hallmark of the genius at work? Here we have Bob Naismith at work creating models his way. Across that desk is cluttered a vast array of bits and pieces and all kids of modelling apparatus. I am sure that this is a picture we can all relate to, eh?
And finally, here we have Tony Ackland enjoying a ciggie whilst working on another evocative picture at his desk. A shed load of reference material causes the shelves behind to groan under the pressure of inspiration itself while what look like images from Runequest are pinned nicely on the wall behind him. But what is he working on? Could it just be the illustration use in Slave to Darkness to introduce the pantheon of Khorne?
What do you think?