I had kind of dropped out of playing the game in 5th ed so when the new rule book came out I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to get back into it. I considered many different armies to start a fresh but many I had done before in previous versions of 40k so I went with something I hadn't really touched before, the Tau.
My first point of call was deciding on a colour scheme. I knew I wanted to go with a digital camouflage as Tau might be brightly coloured but unlike the Eldar its still camouflage, at least to them any way. Plus a modern camouflage would defiantly suit the Tau background.
After a few pages on Google I found an image of a model tank painted in a turquoise, cream and chocolate brown camouflage made up of large rectangles and squares and immediately knew I had found my reference point.
Now that the paint scheme was finalised I needed to come up with a battlefield that would have inspired the Tau to adopt such a bright camouflage. With the turquoise/blue being a dominant colour and the cream/sand colour being close behind it the whole pattern reminded me of a tropical beach. So that's what I went with, this particular world the Tau are fighting on is largely made up of tropical islands, beach heads and lots of crystal clear waters.
After this small brain storm I started sculpting some tropical themed flying and 40mm bases to be cast up in clear resin, what better way to do water effects than starting with a clear base. Pictures of all the bases can be found on my facebook page
After finding out about the new allies I could finally do any army that I had always had in mind, a massively multicultural force that would accept any race and with a bit of research the T'olku sept seemed to fit the bill. The Elder was a worthy choice to start an allied force as they have similar fighting technique and would compliment a Tau army. The idea was that some outcast Eldar that could no longer cope with the Craftworld ridged life style would seek out another empire to call home rather than turn Exodite or pirate.
At any rate I wanted to incorporate allies in such a way that they looked like part of the force and not just have something like Ultramarines allying with my Tau, although they can you know after the battle they would just go there separate ways or worse.
Once I had my bases done I started working on my first Piranha and soon after my Devilfish, The Devilfish was the first unit to incorporate an alien race, in this case a Human auxiliary piloting the vessel.
After these two I started working on my first Fire warrior squad, the unit isn't finished yet as they're not up to full strength but you get the Idea. I had seen a conversion on Google to convert a feline warrior and had to try these out myself, I also added a sneaky Elder figure into the squad as she no doubt joined the Fire caste to protect her new empire.
I then worked on my Stealth team nothing much different about these guys.
My most resent finished unit is my squad of Tau Dire Avengers, I kept the Exarch in his old uniform as my story for him goes that he was expelled from the Craftworld and finally found himself on T'olku. The Ethereals finally agreed to him to set up a Dire Avenger shrine on the grounds that he must accept any race on the path and not just the outcast Elder. With this I painted the squad in my army colours to show that first and full most these guys are Tau empire that just to happened to be schooled in a different fighting technique.
That's about it to start with, I've finished sculpting new heads for my Tau Honour guard, pictures up on my facebook and at the moment i'm working on my Elder/Tau Rangers. They should be finished by next week and I'll keep you guys updated.