First up is my collection of vintage zombies from Citadel Miniatures 'Fantasy Tribes - Zombies' line from the early '80's. If my faulty memory serves, I believe I bought these sometime in 1982, and on the bottoms of most of the bases are the initials 'MP,' which I assume stands for Michael Perry who, along with his brother Alan, began sculpting part time for Citadel in the late '70's at the age of 17, while still in school. As soon as they graduated they both went to work full time at Citadel and have been there ever since. These days the Perry brothers are working primarily on the miniatures in GW's Lord of the Rings line.
There are nine different zombies in the Fantasy Tribes line, FTZ 01 through FTZ 09, but each one has at least twenty-six variants with slightly different heads or weapons. This means that the truly dedicated collector will need to track down around 234 slightly different zombies! I have only six different sculpts, so clearly I have a long way to go to collect them all.
I've just finished repainting all of my zombies, having recently stripped the old, nasty paint off the lot of them, and I've been having a lot of fun experimenting with skin tones. I wanted the zombies to have a variety of flesh colours to represent varying degrees of decomposition rather than giving them a uniform appearance. I've been studying stills from recent zombie shows, including The Walking Dead, as well as pictures from old EC comics such as Tales From the Crypt, and Haunt of Fear.
With FTZ 01 - zombie staggering forward (variant #1 of 26), I've gone with a very pale skin tone that was inspired by the legless zombie in the grass from episode 1 of The Walking Dead. I started out by basecoating the flesh with Reaper Maiden Flesh (a very pale flesh tone), then highlighted by mixing pure white with Maiden Flesh. I shaded it with a wash of Reaper Cloudy Grey mixed with GW Asurman Blue wash, then finally glazed it with Reaper Bone Shadow.
The skin colour of this FTZ 02 - zombie attacking (variant #1 of 26), is one of my favourites. Here, I relied heavily on a series of washes to give it its tone. I started with a basecoat of Reaper Half Orc Highlight (a yellowish brown that is almost identical to GW Snakebite Leather), then shaded it with Reaper Brown Wash. Next, I reapplied the basecoat then highlighted the flesh by adding Reaper Tusk Ivory to the base colour. Then I washed the flesh with GW Thraka Green Wash, followed by a wash of GW Leviathan Purple Wash. The end result is an over-ripe rotting look that I really like.
Next time I'll bring out my Citadel Fantasy Tribes Skeletons...