When I thought about painting the Imperial units, I feared Vader. It wasn’t the way childhood me feared him (his telekinesis, lightsaber expertise, or force choke), but the fact that I had to paint him black. Aside from the Emperor, he’s the first fully black model I would be painting and there are quite a few shades of black across his different uniform materials (cloth, leather, plastic, metal). With the emperor, I didn’t think that my blacks were well varied, so I wanted to do that better this time. At the same time, I wanted to be true to film and avoid over-highlighting the miniature to prevent a cartoony feel that can occur when painting and highlighting black.
Now that I have finally finished painting my wife’s Rebel figures, it is time to start on the Imperial forces -- a lesson in blacks, whites, and chiaroscuro. What better figure to start with than the pallid face of evil itself, the Emperor. While painting this principally monotone model, I set the following goals:
- I want him to stand out when compared with Vader, which meant he couldn’t be black-black
- I want his robe dark enough to contrast well with his pale skin, and
- I want a true black inner robe
It seems like it’s taken forever, but I finally finished* painting my wife’s rebel troops. We started playing Legion just after Valentine’s Day; all in all it has taken roughly four months – mostly due to the fact that I am a slow painter and there are other projects that have required some attention. Of course, it didn’t help that there were three additional releases by FFG in that time: Jyn, the Pathfinders, and the Landspeeder.
Since Christmas I’ve had the Star Wars Legion core set from Fantasy Flight sitting on a shelf collecting dust, mostly because I already had other projects underway, including painting Blood & Plunder miniatures and terrain pieces. But, for Valentine's Day, my wife brought surprised me with three expansion boxes she found at a local gaming store. She also commented that several people the store was going to play Star Wars Legion the next evening. We went to get a taste of the game, and while I was already interested, my wife was excited about playing as well. So, the next day I started painting the rebel faction from the core set for her to play!