Saturday, 11 April 2015

PTS 75 + Reaper Griffon Knight + Roys Crest

Awaiting engraving of the Roys family motto.
Edition #75 of Painting Table Saturday and I have finished painting a gift for my good friend and drummer, Justin Roys. The Roys crest features the mythical griffon. I mentioned this in PTS #74 but I overlooked the Roys family motto, Qua tendis (Wither do you steer). 

This week I dropped the miniature off to my good friend Sandy at Emblems in Hamilton. He is going to mount the miniature and add a brass plate with the family name and motto. Sandy is also a musician, he plays guitar in the band Wolf Wizard.

The Griffon is a multi-part sculpt by Sandra Garrity, from the Reaper Miniatures P-65 Heavy Metal line. I'm not sure if they are currently making these in metal but it's on their website here. You can pick one up from their Bones line in plastic resin. The knight is also a Reaper Miniatures model, sculpted by Werner Klocke, 02422: Sir Michael the Gold. I didn't know the title when I chose the colours! A good match.

Individually they are fine miniatures. Together they are a wonderful pair. If it wasn't for the idea of painting the griffon as a gift for Justin, they would have remained separate. They look perfect as companions, with the bold knight amplified by the magnificent griffon. Putting them both atop a mountain crag seemed cliché, so I tried something new by making water a feature of the base. Perhaps this was me unknowingly connecting the shore to the Roys family motto, Qua tendis (Wither do you steer). Unknowingly because I didn't know the motto at the time I decided to add water.

I am no great scholar. I asked Justin what his motto was and looked it up on Google to confirm it. His translation of Qua tendis over the phone to me was the colloquial "What're you looking at?" We both had a chuckle. We've known each other a long time. It's probable our ancestors knew each other also. The Roys and Perry families were granted lands and titles by Duke William of Normandy, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066. 

Given that history, the motto will have a biblical root. Perhaps a better translation of "Wither do you steer" would be "Do you know where you are going?" For some the answer to that would be "God only knows!" Anyway, Google proved useful again here. 

"But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold."—Job 23:10.

God knows the way that you take, do you? Is this knowledge comforting? There are trials no matter which way you take. Are you confident that God is testing you for your own good? All questions of faith that would no doubt be as much a part of a knight's life in medieval times as they are for us today.

I don't have any fancy water effects products from the likes of Games Workshop or Woodland Scenics. Instead, in good old kiwi number 8 wire tradition, I used Selleys Araldite (5 Minute) epoxy glue. This was more than suitable for the job at hand. As it sets you can add ripples and when it gets tacky an old brush can bring crests to waves. I added some sand after the first layer, along with green washes. I used two green inks. Then after the second layer of glue, a final blue wash, which included the rocks. After everything was dry, some subtle white highlights were applied to the waves and rocks. 

First wash of green water.

Knight is glued to the base with first layer of Araldite.

More green ink washes with a second layer of Araldite.

Dappling with the brush and highlights.

Blue wash over rocks and water.

Photo with flash to show  depth of the water colours.

Almost done. Wing tips and final touches.

After finishing the model I took it outside for some daylight photos. The flash on my Samsung Galaxy S5 is on. Ok, so I'm still an amateur photographer! I'm really happy with how it came out. The water really sparkles. I believe this will really knock Justin's socks off. Feast your eyes on the magnificent results.

Rob is on the right.
Before I go... a shout out to my good friend Rob in Wellington. He is currently enjoying an amazing experience in Weta Workshop, helping prepare Sir Peter Jackson's 10m x 4m Gallipoli diorama that will feature in The Great War Exhibition, opening in the old Dominion Museum building in Wellington, the week before Anzac Day.

To check out the project from a Waikato perspective click the Gallipoli WW100 link on the right.

God bless you and have a great week!


  1. That's a lovely display piece. I like it a lot.

    1. Thanks Dean. I really enjoyed painting it. I believe it captures the spirit of the Roys Crest, even though it's not wholly historically accurate. Apparently Justin is also a descendent of William Wallace.

    2. Thanks Dean. I really enjoyed painting it. I believe it captures the spirit of the Roys Crest, even though it's not wholly historically accurate. Apparently Justin is also a descendent of William Wallace.

  2. Fine work ... I love the wings! ...the water ...the knight's surcoat ...Ok, I love it all. Very nice indeed ;)