So Rangers of Shadow Deep (RoSD) has capture my imagination. Mainly because of it’s setting: a dark evil and impending doom is encroaching on a kingdom and it’s up to the rangers to hold against the tide as long as they can. This is very much a like to what happened to Arnor from Middle-Earth universe. I’d imaging the story of Arnor inspired Joseph A. McCullough, the creator of RoSD, as he’s made it known in the magazine Blaster he is a Middle-Earth fan (the Vol. 1 issue even has a fellowship theme mission for RoSD).
While it will take some time to create the world I want for Arnor in RoSD, I’ve painted up some zombies for the current RoSD setting. They are Reaper zombies and are decent sculpts. I find that the somewhat softly sculpted details really lends to a minimalist or maybe impressionist way of painting (I’m not really knowledgeable about the arts, being a Mathematics teacher and all). I feel I don’t need to be super precise in my brush strokes, like with other crisply detailed models, and can bring out the volumes with rough, sketch-like the highlight. It allows me to think about where the light falls on the different volumes without being bogged down in trying to paint very well – I’m still learning to “master” many techniques after all.
Additionally, the lack of focus allowed me to think about colour harmony. I used the same desaturated green to bend into all the skin tones and cloth. I highlighted up everthing with a pale off white (Nacar from Scale 75). The then gave them a nice decaying atmosphere. It complements really nicely with the vibrant red blood. Though I’d imagine the undead wouldn’t have such oxygenated blood but the rule of cool triumphs over that consideration.
I have found a recipe I like for the bases. Paint the ground with a 3:3:1 of black, browny/grey and dark turquoisy blue respectively and then dry brush with a tan colour. Finally tone it down and dirt it up with a brown wash. This kind of cool but organic (the brown does this) fits welll in a rocky cold tundra type of landscape (e.g Skyrim or the northern parts of Eriador).