Tau Apocalypse Art

August 22, 2009 ·

When it comes to Tau artwork, there's an illustration from Apocalypse and Planetstrike that I always find stirring.

Not because it's shows the Tau kicking arse against the monstrosity of the Tyranids, but from the classical perspective of an art critic.

It's very rare nowadays that anyone talks about Games Workshop artwork, unless it's fan art generated on the net. So as someone who studied Fine Art as part of their degree, I feel that the Games Workshop art studio has come on leaps and bounds in recent years by not only employing traditional media, but by utilising traditional methods of picture layout and construction.

I'm still struggling to acquire a full image of this Tau VS Tyranids artwork as it seems to be cropped in various places from a variety of sources.

There's a heck of a lot going on in this picture, but the real beauty of it isn't the attention to detail, the thousand Tau Battlesuits dropping out of the sky, the line of Tau Hammerhead gunships forming a battery line, the towering monstrous creatures or the Tau aircraft moving to intercept them. It's the sense of depth and dimension which creates an open space in the centre and to the right of the picture. This gives everything in the picture a perfect sense of scale while the Tau Battlesuit stood atop a fallen Carnifex gives us a great visual reference to measure the size of the varying figures throughout this piece.

Traditionally crafted art like this seems a far cry from the days of old which featured rather two-dimension efforts in a crisper comic book style and with the release of grander projects like Planetstrike and Apocalypse, Games Workshop is producing some fantastic art. I can't wait to see the illustrations inside the new Space Hulk rulebooks!


Dave D. said...
August 22, 2009 at 7:00 AM  

Couldn't agree more. Certainly they have stepped it up of late, although I sometimes find myself nostalgic for the art of the early days of warhammer.

Anonymous said...
August 23, 2009 at 5:53 PM  

sinsynn here-
aw, man. When I first saw that pic in planetstrike, I was awestruck. In most pieces featuring Tau, the Tau definately look to be on the losing side. Not so with this picture. The Tau are definately kicking butt here. Love the multitude of crisis suits dropping from the manta.
Just a killer piece of artwork, for sure.
Too bad planetsrike also has the 'space wolf disemboweling a crisis suit' pic as practically a 'centerfold'.

Anonymous said...
December 10, 2009 at 6:47 AM  

If you're wondering the artist is Paul Dainton. He is probanbly the best of all the GW artists

Adam said...
December 10, 2009 at 6:48 AM  

Cheers for that.

I guess this artwork is even more relevant now that the plastic Tyranid Trygon has been revealed.

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