Diala Passil, an aspiring Jedi from the Twi'lek race, is one of the original heroes from Star Wars Imperial Assault. She's also one of my favourite characters from the game. Like Mohammad Ali, her fighting style is all about footwork. This emphasis on agility marks her out among the other Jedi and makes her a uniquely elegant warrior.
The only problem is that I always loathed her official model (pictured below on the right). Since it's made out of the soft plastic that's used in all of the Imperial Assault miniatures, her clothing is chunky, her lightsaber droops and her face wears a bland expression. Nor does the sculpt conjure up the sense of mystery that I associate with a a Force user. With its twirling cape, it seems to owe more than the dancing Twi'lek of Jabba's Palace than to the order of Jedi Knights.
So I decided to create a new, more ass-kicking Diala Passil. However, since Jedi Twi'lek miniatures are in short supply, I had to kit-bash my own. I love the sculpting style of Kev White at Hasslefree Miniatures, and his work is in precisely the same scale as in Imperial Assault, so I started with one of his models: the HFH110 Dynamic Lenore pictured below. She's a dramatic miniature and sports a Jedi-like cloak. Her thigh high boots seem a little salacious for a warrior-monk, but that's nothing that can't be toned down through painting.
My modifications to Lenore were not painful (at least for me). I amputated both her arms and replaced them with some extra limbs from my kit box. Her right hand belongs to an old plastic Scout Trooper from Wizards of the Coast, complete with a Hold-Out Blaster. For her left hand, I fashioned a lightsaber out of greenstuff and copper wire.
I also used greenstuff to make her head-tentacles. I'm sure you will not be surprised to learn that there's a name for these protuberances in the expansive Star Wars Universe... they are called Lekku. (If you ever feel like ruining your day, you can try Googling "lekku porn", but don't say I didn't warn you.)
I wanted my paint job to hearken back to the clothing in the pictures of Diala, so I tried to use the same colour palate and arm-wraps. My goal was to combine the femininity of Kev White's original sculpt with the air of mystery and mastery that accompanies every hooded Jedi.
Thanks for looking!