Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Hyams - The Story That Was Never Told

Over the last couple of years, ex-GW illustrator has shared many of his fantastic Warhammer and 40k illustrations  over at his Facebook page. I'm a huge fan of Tony's artwork, and am lucky enough to own some of his nice Eldar pieces. One set of illustrations that caught my eye when Tony first posted them, was a series of 5 images of a character called Hyams. From conversation with Tony, the illustrations were commissioned by GW Books (the publishing arm of GW in the late 1980s and early 1990s) to accompany a novel about Hyams - a hive ganger who has a dream that he should travel to Holy Terra. We don't know who the author was, any more details of the storyline, or indeed why the book was never published. All we have are Tony's wonderful illustrations and tantalising titles:
 
'Portrait of Hyams'
 
'Hyams arrives on Terra'

'Hyams in the Circus Imperious'

'Hyams' Interview'

'Hyams in the Interplanetary Zoo'

Inspired by Tony's Hyams illustrations, I set about trying to create my own miniature version of the character. Tony was able to give me a few more clues about Hyams.

On Hyams' right arm: "Bionic as I recall. I only had artist's briefs to work from rather than the full text bet seem to recall that he was from a violent hive-world so his arm could have been cobbled together from scavenged tech, probably heavily modified with inbuilt weapons."
 
On Hyams' clothing: "Camo on sleeve and trousers probably urban colours as he's from a hive world."
 
Armed with the above images and knowledge, I proceeded to create my miniature Hyams.
 
Step 1: take a Bob Olley Imperial Guardsman
 
 
Step 2: cut off and straighten his legs, shave away the hair, cut the head off, saw him in half...

Step 3: "We can rebuild him"
 
Step 4: some time later...
 
The above process took around 18 months, including a significant period around step 3 when I was really unhappy with the progress, and didn't know how to make Hyams' distinctive bionic arm. But I persevered, and finally, have completed my version of Hyams.
 




Hopefully the figure evokes the illustrations sufficiently. He's not a 100% accurate recreation, particularly some areas of the face (with his more prominent chin), but he is 'close enough'! I look forward to including Hyams in some of my civilian 40k scenes.

Hyams attempts to navigate immigration upon arrival on Terra.
 
If anyone knows any more about Hyams, and the novel he was due to feature in, I'd love to hear from you!

24 comments:

  1. I'm lost for words. Those illustrations rae pure gold and the posts ends with a fantastic model that comes with a load fo character and potential storylines...
    Beautiful.

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    1. I could look at Tony's 40k illustrations for hours. The scale and scope of them is pretty much unrivalled in my view!

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  2. I think you did a good job with the arm. I've actually been looking at miniatures with bionic arms recently, their pretty thin on the ground.

    He looks great Axion :)

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    1. Thanks! The bionic arm was a tricky one as the artwork shows an organic-looking one, rather than the chunky mechanical sort. I think it came out OK in the end :)

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  3. Really a stunning piece. Such good story telling all around.
    Cheers

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    1. I'm glad you like him! I'd really love to find out more about Hyams - why he was on Terra, what happened, what creatures he liked at the Interplanetary Zoo ;)

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  4. Love the figure and the Interplanetary Zoo picture in particular.
    Alan

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    1. That's my favourite too! I need to build the Interplanetary Zoo for him to wander round.

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  5. Oh man this is great! What adventures will Hyam get into. ;)

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    1. Who knows! Many and varied I suspect :)

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  6. I never knew about Hyams, that's fascinating. Some great detective work there! A wonderful background story to bring onto the tabletop. You've created a wonderfully characterful mini too. That's some hardcore Rogue Trader love right there.

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    1. I suspect Hyams is a pretty obscure part of 40k lore...I didn't know about him until Tony shared his illustrations. But knowing he exists enriches the universe further, right?!

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  7. I thought the Titan zoo animal transport was nuts, until I saw the Reaver on the ladder. Thanks for the post, even if it means I need to make some larger terrain.

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    1. There's definitely a playful and expansive scale on view!

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  8. Wow! Too bad those books never came about, I suspect they would have been interesting indeed.

    And the conversion is great, really matches the feel of the illustrations.

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    1. I've been doing some digging on the book, but I'm no further along.. I don't even know the author, or whether a manuscript was written!

      Glad you like him :)

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  9. Magnificent! Thank you for sharing this with us. It is a real treat.

    A tantalising evocation of a fascinating world.

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    1. Maybe we can reverse engineer the story?!

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  10. I'm still shocked in awe by your work here. You rescued some piece of fluff I did not know about and you made it 3D in the most fascinating way imaginable. Slow standing ovation.

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    1. You're too kind! Maybe there will be more Hyams launched onto the world as a result?!

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  11. What a cool little project. Fantastic work! :)

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    1. Thank you very much! Glad you like him :)

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  12. Thats a load of fun Jon, completely unique.

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