Thursday 19 July 2012

The Legends of Old Lead: Pete Taylor

There are many myths about the Golden Age of Citadel Miniatures but few true legends. 

Pete Taylor is one such legend!

The guy was a machine of miniatures. To this day I am amazed by his output back in the 1980s and early 90s, truly massive armies, epic conversions (when converting was really, really tough) and wild, wild paint (not pant) schemes. He was rewarded with frequent inclusions in White Dwarf and  immortal appearances in Warhammer Armies and The Lost and the Damned.

Let's hand it over to the man himself to explain what started him off on such an epic journey. 

"As far as I can remember I started collecting fantasy miniatures at age 13 although a small group of us were playing Dungeons and Dragons before this.
2nd edition WFB had just been released, although through a friend I also had access to 1st edition and the Forces of Fantasy supplement so it is reasonable to say I have been in the hobby for most of its existence.
Like many I first came to fantasy via Tolkien's The Lord of The Rings so my first impulse on starting to play WFB was to collect Orcs. In second edition you could take Chaos warriors as leaders of units for any chaotic or evil race (and neutral I think) which allowed a kind of warband feel to the army, I liked this and in my minds eye I always imagine all my chaos and evil armies to be part of one huge chaos horde and one day I would love to play the game with everything I have all at once!"

Play a game with everything at once Pete? That would truly be a 'great and noble undertaking' to misquote Eisenhower. 
"Over the years rules have changed and armies have become less diverse which has led to my collecting forces of various sizes for most "bad-guy" armies.
As the years have progressed I have played less and less but have continued to have bouts of collecting and painting.
I went to the last ever Citadel open day at the old factory and was greatly influenced by a huge display put on by "The Players Guild" which featured a besieged castle surrounded by a horde of evil creatures, to this day I much prefer the sight of huge units and large monsters to small tournament armies with ridiculous amounts of special rules and magic items."

Some important key words here; 'less diverse' and 'small tournament armies'. The very things that are the very antithesis to Oldhammer. Its sad to hear that the giants of the hobby are being cast aside by the tournament heavy nonsense of recent times.

Pete is my number one inspiration when it come to painting and gaming. Firstly, he loved Realm of Chaos in all its 80s glory, he paints prolifically, enjoys huge units and uses colour in an intriguing way. Secondly, his collection is MASSIVE. And that collection is largely PAINTED. Something I'd like to be able to say one day.

Below is a fantastic gallery of a tiny part of Pete's collection, culled from various websites from around the internet. I also have a massive collection of his White Dwarf stuff which I'll post some time in the future. 

Original Fleshounds make up this terrifying unit. 

Juggernauts of Khorne with Bloodletter riders. Really nicely done. I'm looking forward to painting my my Khornate Daemonic legion when the Orcs and Undead are complete. 

Keen eyed longbeards will recognise this as a conversion based on one of the old Fighting Fantasy plastic kits released in the mid 80s. 

This collection makes my pathetic efforts look, well... pathetic really. This horde (there is no other word, is there?) is just Pete's undead army. 

I am going to have to attempt to do a banner in that style at some point! Looks fantastic; I wonder where the chaos warrior found the time to paint to?

Characterful orcs lead these chariots.

Frost Giants! Proper old school Citadel here!

Converted Bloodthirster as Keeper of Secrets. I love the colour of the flesh on this piece.

The famous chaos spawn conversion (built from a Fimir body) that appeared in WD and LatD.

A dwarf knight? A GSOH is essential in Oldhammer. 

Again, a lovely skin tone on this Fimir warrior. I am going to have to copy it myself.

That lovely skin tone used on a standard Keeper of Secrets. 

Plaguebearer. Classic!

Pete's version of the iconic Warhammer ogre by Jes Goodwin. 

Crazy Nurgle Conversion!

Check out more of the master's work here and here.

Be inspired!



  1. Awesome images!!
    I've finished the Golden Gobbo black line drawing:
    The file is a little on the huge size but hopefully you can use it. I should have the colour version sorted tomorrow.

    I'm not really sure where to post over on the Oldhammer blog but if the first issue of the zine needs a cover and no one else has anything it would be awesome to have the Gobbo on the cover :)

    1. Also Just finished the colour version:
      Let me know what you think

  2. A year or two ago, I saw Pete's Skaven army, the vast one featured in Warhammer Armies, broken up into regiments and up for auction on ebay. I would have loved to have bought a regiment, just for the nerdy joy of owning something featured in that marvelously re-readable tome. Alas, it was one of those months when all the bills show up at once and I just couldn't do it. Shame, really.

    Anyway thanks for another great post full of old school goodness. Your blog is becoming a great resource for reference and inspiration.


  3. Hi, ..erm the first half of those minis are not Pete`s - they are mine though it is a fantastic ego boost to be put in the same category as him.


  4. Over a year on and i still don`t get any credit? Harsh.