Canis de Milo

As soon as the rumors about the Space Wolves Codex began trundling out, one of the ideas that caught my fancy was the Thunderwolf Cavalry. So, the first model I picked up to paint when I got my grubby little hands on the new models was Canis. I know some people hate the very idea of Space Marines on animals, but I saw it as a unique painting challenge. I tend toward the clean lines and detail-oriented side of painting, and the big furry wolf seemed like a cool model on which to cut my less-refined teeth.

Many comments about the Canis model have been full of vitriol, split quite evenly between Canis and Fangir, the wolf. While the hand position on Canis leaves a bit to be desired, I felt that Fangir’s only problem was the paint job. The positioning of the model is not the most threatening, though the face is quite cool, and the lighter colors used in GW’s studio model made it look a bit weak. I initially wanted to go with a dark red fur, but after a test model, I didn’t think it was the best option. After reading the Wolf codex, I decided to paint him black, as the blackmane wolves are reputedly the most vicious. I also liked the fact that it looked somewhat like a bear.

Tips for painting Fangir:
1. Paint the wolf first. You’re going to use Canis’s head as an axis, and you’ll rub the paint right off. There’s no primer left.
2. The fur is a pain. It has deep recesses that can be a sob to get to, and it will mess up your brush.
3. The wolf’s eye presents an excellent opportunity to create a very sinister looking facial expression.
4. Blending the fur with the flesh portions is crucial.
5. The skull on the right, front paw is poorly sculpted, so good luck.

I’m pretty pleased with the model so far. I’m hoping I can make Canis comparably cool so that I can have a new centerpiece model for my army.

Two more things:
1. I have no idea how GW expects anyone to make more TW Cavalry out of the model. Canis is a part of the wolf, and remodeling it neatly would be challenging at best. I hope that either they or Forge World is going to produce a kit. The unit is too cool and is going to be too effective to not be given models.
2. I still haven’t decided what to do with the claws. I’m either going to go with black, or I’m going to paint them in a metallic as if they’re tipped with Adamantine. What do you guys think?

Well, that’s it for now.