A lot of the illustrations featured in the gallery section of your blog are from the late 80’s up to the mid 90’s and a lot of people getting into the hobby recently probably haven’t been exposed to the dark gothic style of artwork back then. If you had to pick out five pieces of art to introduce people which would you pick?
Choosing five favourites out of the hundreds of amazing illustrations GWs produced over the years is quite a pickle.
Number one is easy though – John Blanche´s Sisters of Battle cover from their first codex back in 1997.
That painting has got it all and completely nails the look, feel and attitude of the 40k universe. If I only had one picture to show it´d be that one – it´s perfect. Fun fact – the Sister superior on the cover is based on John´s ex wife.
The other four in no particular order:
John´s Black Templars cover from 40k 3rd edition, which pretty much sums up what Space Marines are about (or at least should be).
Jes Goodwin´s Adeptus Mechanicus drawing (from Rogue Trader I think?)
It really captures the Imperiums view of technology and the creepiness and religious dogma of the mechanicum.
Paul Bonner´s drawing of Ork Meks building a Gargant
(because I love his philosophical, happy go lucky, Orks of old).
Adrian Smith´s Nurgle vs Tzeentch
(because no one captures the essence of chaos better than him)
Am I right in saying you got back into the hobby around 2013. What made you stop and what brought you back?
Not quite. I´ve been painting and modelling off and on since I was twelve back in 1990. Since 1998 when 3rd edition of 40k came out I’ve been slowly building an Ork army and used to hang out a lot at the Waaaagh forum. However in 2012 I discovered the inq 28 community and that inspired me to start up a blog of my own and change focus from Orky contraptions to the grimdark weirdness of the Imperium. All the stuff that John Blanche, PDH, Migsula, JRN and all the rest of them completely changed how I looked at modelling and painting. Through interactions with those guys on the Convertorum and the INq28 forum on the Ammobunker I soon became part of a community in a way I previously never thought possible – it was a lot more open and inclusive than the other forums I had visited. That positive energy sort of supercharged me. It made me try new techniques and my work got exponentially better in a very short time.
The parts that make up some of your conversions are very varied, how do you store it all? I bet you must have a platinum account with bitzbox.
I have a bunch of carton boxes from a office depot where I store all my sprues, plus various plastic boxes full of bits. It´s a bloody mess and takes up way too much space.
I’ve seen that excellent Cairn Wraith miniature pop up several times in your work, do you have any other favourite model kits which you keep going back to?
The robed legs of the fantasy Chaos Sorcerer has popped up in quite a few conversions.
~ Inspired yet?
Continue reading for more on Johans design process and more of his work at: