Wednesday, June 7, 2023

Some random items after a long period of inactivity

The first two miniatures are the androsphinx, Kamaljiori (Monsters of Exandria Set 1 #2), and an Adranach (Monsters of Tal'Dorei Set 2 #1) from the Critical Role Miniatures line.

Sphinxes from the Critical Role universe have both lion and eagle tails, but I'm not a fan of the design choice. However, as it turns out, the unwanted tail feathers were a perfect fit for the Reaper peryton that I bought 8 years ago.

The next miniature I've been working on is the Reaper Graveyard Golem (Bones 77526).

The miniature consists of five pieces in the newer Bones plastic. One of the parts was short shot, but I didn't actually notice until I was already finishing up with painting.

One of the things I didn't like about this sculpt was that it didn't have a right hand, so I did a bit of modification to make it fit my vision of the figure.

I was thinking about adding some crows perched on the "wings" of the golem, but it didn't feel quite right with the new, more action oriented pose.

The final miniature is Azael the Unfaithful from Rackham Miniatures. I think that in the Confrontation lore she is supposed to be some sort of undead, but I thought she would make a good fallen angel, so I decided to add some wings to the figure.

I based her look somewhat off of Nanael from Queen's Blade, with one withered wing, and one normal wing.

The right wing is from the Radiant Idol (Eberron: Rising from the Last War #32) from the Icons of the Realms Miniatures line.

While the left wing comes from a Deva (Snowbound #15) from the Icons of the Realms Miniatures line.

Thursday, May 4, 2023


Pazuzu is a Mesopotamian underworld deity personifying the west/southwest wind, and ruler of the lilû.

Louvre Museum, MNB 467

A statue of Pazuzu appeared in the 1973 film The Exorcist, which apparently garnered enough popularity, that it has received bit roles in various forms of media ever since.

The Exorcist, 1973

Adèle Blanc-Sec -
Le démon de la Tour Eiffel
, 1976

Legend, 1985

The Simpsons -
Treehouse of Horror XXVIII
, 2017

Godzilla: King of the Monsters, 2019

Spider-Man: Far From Home, 2019

House of Ashes, 2021

A couple of miniatures of Pazuzu exist, but the one I have is from the Citadel Demons Box Set from their RuneQuest line of miniatures.

An insert gave the gaming statistics for the various demons, with some notes on their combat strategies, but there wasn't much in the way of background provided for them. Some additional information appeared in White Dwarf 48, where the demons were given AD&D statistics.

The miniature vaguely fits the description of the mythological Pazuzu, but doesn't much look like the statue from the movie. I think I'm going to attach a scorpion tail to the miniature to align it closer to its appearance in Mesopotamian mythology.

British Museum 86263

Sunday, April 9, 2023

Topsy-turvy rabbits

Mikhail Bakhtin used the term "carnivalesque" to describe a literary style in which expectations and heirarchy are turned topsy-turvy. He linked the term to celebrations in medieval Europe, such as the Feast of Fools, the Feast of the Ass, and Carnival when chaos ruled, and the established order was turned on its head.

This type of inversion is also found in the marginalia of medieval manuscripts, the most famous examples are the so-called "killer rabbits".

Rabbits were viewed as innocent and vulnerable in medieval symbolism, with tapestries and illustrations often showing them being hunted as food by humans.

The marginalia subverted these concepts, and switched the roles of the rabbits and humans.

Skull & Crown Miniatures did a Kickstarter campaign a few of years back to turn these rabbits into miniatures. I was intrigued by the project, but didn't end up backing it.

Anyway, a couple of months ago, curiosity finally got the better of me, and I ordered a bunch of the rabbits. They're definitely big, but they're still shorter than the average 1/72 scale human, and don't seem too far off with respect to the apparent size of the typical killer rabbit shown in marginalia.

The first group of rabbits are from the Kickstarter Set (KR01). The set includes a separate heater style shield for one of the rabbits.

The next group is from the Hunting Party Set (KR02). The spear and crossbow poses are identical to ones from the previous set.

Whimsically, a snail rests on the gauntlet of the noble rabbit.

The next set includes another creature that is commonly encountered in marginalia, and is the Rabbit Mounted on Snail (KR06). The set includes an extra snail that I think was part of the 250 backer stretch goal of the Kickstarter campaign.

The miniature is based on a composite of two different illustrations.

The Rabbit Command Set (KR14) includes the same bagpipe pose from the Kickstarter Set, and the same mounted noble pose from the Hunting Party Set.

I also was able to get some figures from the Rabbit Trebuchet Set (KR17), Castle Siege Set, and Rabbit Ecclesiastical Set. Normally, the sets come with MDF architectural pieces, but Crown & Skull was kind enough to find some loose miniatures for me.

There is also a crossbow rabbit with the Trebuchet Set, but I didn't bother including one in the photo, since it is identical to the ones from the other sets.

It would have been nice if the Ecclesiastical Set contained all of the poses in the illustration on which it was based.

The final image is of the Wing’d Dog and Pilgrim Set (KR11). I ordered it because I liked the winged dog, and was curious about how tall the hounds were.

To conclude, I have to say that I really like these miniatures, and they are quite faithful to the illustrations found in medieval manuscripts (although the awkward 2D style rendition of the crossbow and crucifix are not ideal).

One thing I do want to mention is that the miniatures are cast in a very soft metal, making me wonder about the lead content in them. During flash removal they left a dark residue on my fingertips, which I washed off with soap and water afterwards.

This is something that I often observed in the past after handling old lead minis. If you are concerned about this, you might want to consider wearing gloves to handle the miniatures until after they are painted.