When I first asked to create another Mephiston conversion I was a little hesitant, having done two already and I wasn’t keen on doing more of the same, however, the client was after something a little more unique. The brief he left me with was to use the plastic Blood Angel Chaplain as a starting point, keeping a similar pose but to take it in a classic vampire theme direction.
After turning to Google Images for ideas I found some poster images for the most recent Dracula movie. Most of them showed Dracula with a heavy cloak that was transmuting into a swarm of bats on the outer edges. This became the focus of the conversion.
The choice of head for the headswap was obvious, and the one I had used twice before, Astrorath the Grim. It’s beautifully sculpted and perfect for Mephiston. The sword is Mephiston’s original sword, although a little chunky it doesn’t look at all out of place. The sword’s hilt is from the Vampire Lord sword, the one from the Zombie Dragon kit (I buy these swords as bits whenever they show up in bits stores or on ebay).
To make the swarm of battle I sculpted half a dozen different bat shapes on a piece of flat plasticard and made a one piece mold in Blu-Stuff Putty which I then used to cast multiples in greenstuff. The idea was that the bats were a form of Mephiston’s psychic powers, rather than actual flesh and blood (pun intended) bats. With that reasoning I avoided trying to sculpt faces and little furry bodies on these tiny things.
I actually got a bit stuck with the conversion towards the end of the project, but thankfully the client was able to give me some solid inspiration (and drawings, sorry I lost them before I could take pics) to help put the whole thing together.
The small size of the bats made pinning them impossible (I love to pin everything as everything I make is intended to be a gaming piece) so this model is more fragile than I would like. I made him his own special transport case, as transporting in foam is just going to lead to breakages. To do this I found a plastic jar with a screw top and by gluing a penny to the underside of the model’s base and the inside of the jar lid I could magnetize him securely to the inside of the lid. Then the jar just screws on over the top of the mini. I often do this when I have to ship commission pieces, but it was essential to protect this particular model.
Below is a 360 degree video.