Friday, 18 November 2016

Suicide Squad Katana [WIP - Freehand of Skull Icon] aka 70 mm Nocturna Models Soum, 13 Moons

My first step in converting the 80-mm Nocturna Models Soum 13 Moons resin figurine into a proper Suicide Squad character proxy involved painting freehand, a skull icon used to symbolise Katana in the promotional movie posters. Although I'm by no means an expert at it, I must admit the thought of painting freehand on miniatures no longer fills me with a sense of trepidation it used to. That boils down to having the proper tools which in my case is the combination of a Kolinksy Sable brush, Vallejo Model Color acrylic paints and oil-based Faber-Castell Polychromos colour pencils. 

Freehand painting of a skull icon representing Suicide Squad's Katana
A comparison between the original skull icon (left) and my freehand version (right)

If the freehand skull icon looks a bit muted that's because I wanted the painted design to blend into the sign rather than stand out too much. Because of this, I refrained from using pure white on the skull icon. While to the naked eye it might seem as if white was used to paint the skull icon's cheeks and forehead area, in actual fact Vallejo Model Color Pastel Green was used instead.

Acrylic paints, mediums and washes used on the sign so far

Meanwhile, the other side of the sign (see immediate photo below) is far from completed. All it has is the base colour and some shadows. It looks bland now because the side of the sign with the face-like features will eventually be heavily weathered to show chipped paint, rust, stain and streaking.

Other side of the sign which is uncompleted and still in its early pre-weathered stage
Completed, unweathered side of the sign

When compared to the original skull icon as seen in promotional movie posters, the shortcomings in my own freehand interpretation are obvious, for example proportion-wise it's slightly off. But I think I did the best I could considering the scale of the sign (see photo below). Hopefully, in the future my freehand miniature paintings will have better proportion and that will only come with more practice.

Scale comparison of the sign against a five sen coin and a paperclip

Personally, I prefer either a pastel green or turquoise blue base colour if orange rust is to be added. In Katana's case, green seemed a perfect fit as the hue better evokes a ghostly atmosphere. My plan is for the sign to have a 'two-faced character' to it i.e. one side with the skull icon for Katana and a heavily weathered side with face-like features for Soum. I had better get started on the latter then.


  1. Impressive really, getting that kind of clean, smooth result is key to making this sort of things work and it totally does here.

    1. Thank you! :) The smoothness, in part, is due to the choice of colour used and greens tend to be smoother than most other hues.

  2. Creative and most impressive!

  3. I couldn't answer before because I was clapping.

    Fantastic work!

    1. Ha ha ha ... ^_^ ... you crack me up Suber.
      Thank you so much for your kindly comments! :)


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