Making Your Own Epic Miniatures: Final Concepts & Renders!

April 20, 2015 by brennon

With the concept stage now at an end we got back in touch with @deaddave from the community to talk about the next steps with his project to make his own custom miniature and the journey he’s embarked upon. Idea solidified he’s turned to the help of fellow community member @motioninpoetry to talk about 3D renders!

Final Cor Tauri

Read Part One of this journey where we talked about the initial designs and more HERE.

BoW: Now that you’ve reached the end of the concept art stage what made you pick the specific features that went into the final piece?

deaddave: When Roberto sent me the initial two designs I simply picked the parts from each concept that I liked, or what features I thought looked cool. After he sent me the second version I gave him the all clear to draw up the final version. When it comes to particular features on the final concept I’ll begin with the backpack. From the start I said to Roberto that I wanted something reminiscent of a V12 engine! It ended up being a V10, but I can live with that.

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I’m particularly fond of the inter-cooler styled parts along the back of the engine/backpack and I love what Roberto did with the exhausts. You should also take a look at the intake for the engine as it comes out above his head so from the front it looks like a big block engine intake.


The spear is inspired by the Spear of Longinus from the Evangelion anime but I had Roberto make it look more dangerous. I also had him add the smaller spear tip to the rear of the spear as the Spartans had similar tips on their spears for finishing off dying enemies on the battlefield without blunting the main blade. So yeah, I actually managed to fit something historical in there as well!


The larger hand carrying the shield was inspired by the War character from the Darksiders video game. Speaking of darksiders, the armour, while certainly a powered armour, is a nod towards the War character in his abyssal armour crossed with a Ancient Greek Spartan. Oh, and the eagle eyed readers out there should notice there are…NO skulls! It definitely can’t be a Space Marine!

The next stage is to develop the artwork into a 3D model. I hear you’ve had some help with that from our very own community member motioninpoetry. How has it been working with him taking your model to the next level?

Final Cor Tauri (Single)

Its been interesting. It’s always a leap of faith when you enter into business with someone you haven’t even met yet! It’s early days but I’m already panicking about how its going to come out. Thankfully motioninpoetry has been very reassuring and he has been very helpful and insightful with his information and experience.

What made you want to join in the project with deaddave, motioninpoetry, and has it been an easy process taking this to the next stage?

motioninpoetry: Well, like most people on Beasts of War I first heard about the project by reading the article that was published. When I first saw the concept I thought it looked awesome as its got that kind of hybrid Sci-Fi/Fantasy style that I really like. I just naturally gravitated towards it.

Cor Tauri Render #1

I commented a few times and said how I was looking forward to seeing how the miniature progressed then over the next day or two I kept going back and looking at the article again until I just started to get that “itch you can’t scratch” that sculptors sometimes get! Sometimes you just see concepts like that so when you just get the urge to make it you should go for it.

Of course because of my job, I thought I could help him out getting things printed up and cast for him too. In the end I just sent him a message about it, had a chat about things, and well; here we are!

Talk us through some of the decisions that have to be made when making a model like this based on concept artwork.

T he first thing you need to think about when sculpting from any concept are…

1) How does this flat 2D image translate into a physical object? A simple pencil mark can become a complex sculpt, and vice versa. It’s all about trying to find the best possible results you can and some areas will take longer to crack than others.

2) Strength. Are the pieces thick enough and can it survive being removed from a mold nevermind tabletop use? For instance the spear pole needs some extra strength. If the spear was sculpted in these exact proportions it would be 0.5mm thick in some parts meaning it would shatter into a thousand the pieces the moment it gets pulled from the mold. Not great for anyone!

Things like that will need some extra strength since even at three times the thickness it’s still 1.5mm at the thinnest areas. It’s just a balancing act with things like that.

3) How many parts does it need and what angle can they be cast from? It’s a case of working out what shapes can different molding and casting materials achieve?

Cor Tauri Render #2

As far as sculpting it goes this has been a relatively straight forward process so far. It’s the kind of thing I enjoy sculpting a lot so it’s quite natural for me.

The main thing right now is that the shoulder pads have been a bit of a puzzle so far and like I said to deaddave, it’s a bit of an MC Escher style optical illusion on that area of the concept, with angles and shapes going in bizarre directions that seem a bit confusing.


I’ll probably do several more passes on the top part of the shoulder pads before I even start to detail them in this case so I’ll get there eventually. Anyway, it’s early days still, so there’s plenty more time to work on things.

Have you considered the step after this where it comes to actually getting the model printed? Do you have any solid plans laid down for this yet?

deaddave: Nope. I must be honest in that I’ve not even been thinking about that at this stage. Motioninpoetry has his industry connections so when/if I’m happy with the sculpt I’ll sit down with him and start hashing things out!

While we’re all very interested in the model and the process that you’re going through have you thought about any of the background for him yet? We all love a bit of fluff!

Fluff fluff fluff! Well, this is personally for my gaming in the gaps so at the risk of getting a cease and desist (deep breath) his name is Cor Tauri (“Heart of the Bull”) and he is the…

“demigodleaderofalostgroupofspacewhatsitscomingbackfromexile” (a very official sounding term)

He will then be part of an event called Inheritance in the end I hope. Wink wink, nudge nudge @warzan!

It’s great that this particular warrior of the far future now has a proper name and it will be awesome to see what this partnership of deaddave and motioninpoetry can come up with!

If you have any questions for the pair then drop them into the comments below and I’m sure they will be happy enough to answer them.

What do you think of the renders and final concept choices?

"...his name is Cor Tauri ("Heart of the Bull") [...] He will then be part of an event called Inheritance in the end I hope"

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"I'll begin with the backpack. From the start I said to Roberto that I wanted something reminiscent of a V12 engine! It ended up being a V10, but I can live with that..."