May 1st has come and gone, and I have officially started working on my Black Templar army for the Preferred Enemies Army Challenge. I thought about starting off with vehicles - a Rhino, maybe, or a couple of Land Speeders - but I decided to keep it simple and start with an HQ and troops. That means I have 19 Initiates and 4 Neophytes to make, along with a Marshal for my crusade. The former I can build from the Space Marine battle force (which is the stack of sprues in the background), and the latter I'm building from a Space Marine commander (his sprues, along with a command squad and some Black Templar sprues are in the foreground).
I've already got all the parts for the Marshal clipped out and set up. They just need to be cleaned up a bit and assembled:
I'm using the combat shield from the Assault Marine squad as a storm shield (and had to clip off the hand on the back because it's for the wrong arm), and I'm using the special Black Templar backpack from the upgrade set instead of the double-eagle backpack. Hoping to get him together tonight and then maybe make some progress on the Crusader Squads. I think I might do the las/plas squad first - it's smaller, and it'll get me used to building marines again.
In the meantime, I also have some Tau Pathfinders to assemble and paint, and I think I'll try out the brush-on GW primer for those as an experiment. It'll be nice to finally try out the new paints, I think.