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Black Library: Damocles

By ukitakumuki
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Check out the e/book here! :…
Illustration © Games Workshop
Art director/producer: Karen Miksza

The brief for this one was a three-way melee between Kor'sarro Khan of the White Scars, Tau Commander Shadowsun, and Captain Kayvaan Shrike of the Raven Guard, amidst a mixed-force battle of White Scars, Raven Guard, and Cadian IG versus the Tau fighting atop a rocky promontory with jungle.

The main focus of the show is Shadowsun, whom according to the reference and specs sent to me, often fields two shield drones. I thought that could be a perfect excuse to not end up in an awkward "2 on 1" prong attack. So that resulted in our assault marine captain Shrike pulling off a DFA and Kor'sarro timing a strike to take out her shield on one side.

Given the hardback template/format I decided early on to have two back to back crisis suits behind the main trinary to visually frame the action and hopefully some narrative link to what was going on in the background. While sketching in comp ideas I was thinking of World in Conflict FMVs (yeah I watched a compilation vid of the different sequences but set to just Audioslave's Shadow on the Sun... how apt for our Tau commander :p) which inspired that jungle crossfire for the back cover (left of image), along with some physics logic I thought should be observed such as "if plasma based weaponry gets spammed in the general direction of a forest, there should be a moderate to high chance of a forest fire occurring" which kinda explains why we see the charred dirt and branches and hints of trees on fire in the back.

Other favourite points of interest that I recall from half a year back:

-Singed/scorched Imperial armour versus cracked/gouged tau armour
-Drones buzzing a tree (near the sun)
-Devastator Raven going head on with the battlesuit turned away from us, armour in the process of being seared off chunk by chunk.
-White Scar reading poetry on the lawn in an admirable last stand
-Unfortunate IG, now literally half the man he used to be. Courtesy of being in the open when Tau heavy artillery drops.

Check back soon for The Shape of The Hunt!!!
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© 2014 - 2020 ukitakumuki
anonymous's avatar
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0ktavian's avatar
0ktavianStudent Digital Artist

This is it, this is my favourite Black Library cover. I hope to reach that level of skill someday. This is absolutely outstanding.

Epifairos's avatar
Yes! The arrogant xeno filth learned to fear there. Barely escaped with her own life. Were not for the bitter endgame, I'd be quite satisfied. Hell, as I look upon this, I just see her chest punctured by Shrike's power claw even when I know how this actually eneded. My mind just wants to see the good guys win.
Brutally epic!Red Hood 2 Icon 
fanglish's avatar
Considering Shadowsun still lives after facing those two badasses... I outta respect the girl. Even if she is a Xenos.
Sgt-Grimstad's avatar
Nerf Tau plz. 2 S8 AP2 Blasters is excessive for runty Shadowsun. This is how it should go down on the tabletop too. Love the Lore but can't stand the imbalance and unfair advantage of Tau & Eldar dominance on the tabletop.
phyzimpa's avatar
not only is this a damn good drawing, it has tau getting their asses kicked. you trying to make me cry of joy or something?
AZpeasy's avatar
Way to look like a dick.
Ibnadiya's avatar
I wholeheartedly agree, Tau have no place in WH40k IMO.
Elouq's avatar
lol and the blocky legomen mary sues do? 
Elouq's avatar
No they really don't. space marines are the opposite of grim dark.
AZpeasy's avatar
Don't be a dick, Dick.
cheeselover555's avatar
Thing is, after this SHE'S NOT DEAD. I'm just about done.
Elouq's avatar
except this didnt happen you idiot.
turtlegate107's avatar
Pfff, The homegirl Shadowsun got dis!!! No prob she just likes to yell before she owns dem noobs lol 😁
SkyPotatoFire's avatar
Very nice image of raw emotion of a battle.
mrjon17's avatar
Thank you for sharing :) (Smile)

Joker iphone Wallpaper
Jeova0sanctus0unus's avatar
oi oi oi, but let´s be honest, they never stood a chance against Shrike, or am i wrong?
AZpeasy's avatar
The thing is, shrike actually never stood a chance against them.
Dragon-the-Tribrid's avatar
Dragon-the-TribridHobbyist General Artist
Shadowsun looks like she's in trouble! The poor girl!
Elouq's avatar
Very nice work of course, there's no denying that. However, I admit I do not like the portrayal of Shadowsun in this image, nor does it make much sense.
SFaccountant's avatar
I love how that one Crisis Suit is just sort of watching as Shadowsun is double-teamed by Astartes leaders.
"Should I... Should I help? I dunno. I think she's got this. I probably don't need to help."
Warhammer40kfanatic's avatar
This is gorgeous!
guterrez's avatar
guterrezProfessional Digital Artist
your work is amazing! the dynamic action puts you right in the middle of it.
any chance to see wip shots?
anonymous's avatar
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