Monday, October 31, 2016

A sneak peak at my some of my upcoming personal projects...


Things have been pretty quiet on here for the last couple of months. As a matter of fact, I'm pretty sure I haven't posted anything since July. Granted... things have been kinda crazy... Gen Con, Kickstarters, slogging my way through six months of backlog, and much more. But as work stuff has settled back down... I've been slowly working through all my painting projects and commission work. 

I took a bit of a break over the last week to concentrate on assembling and prepping my next batch of personal projects... and here they are:


There is a bout 30 metal models in the photo... all ready for painting. About half of the models are old Harlequin Fantasy models (the undead and the barbarians) and the rest are a mix of Reaper and Ral Partha. Actually, I thin there is 1 Ral Partha model... the hill giant.

Not pictured... all the plastic models I will be working on. Why? I have a different prep processes for hard plastic models (GW and Mantic), softer plastic models (Zombicide and Imperial Assault), and Reaper Bones models. But there will be a fair amount of those as well.

I will probably end up doing some tutorials with some of the models... such as a revised undead fleshtone with the zombies, maybe a tanned flesh with the barbarians or the ogre.... and possibly a pallid flesh one for the female necromancer (althouth I also have a Diehard Necromancer that isn't pictured here that might work well for that).


Thursday, June 30, 2016

Long weekend painting challenge...

Anytime I have a long weekend, I like to set a little painting goal... mainly so I feel like I actually accomplished something other than grilling an awesome steak and mowing the front yard. As I have Monday off for July 4th, I am preparing my challenge model for painting.

Meet Amiri...  the Pathfinder iconic Barbarian. Yes, I bought yet another Barbarian model... I know so out of character for me. What I like about this mini is she is not clad in a chainmail bikini or a leopard skin thong. Never been a fan of that whole thing... sure it looks cool on the side of a van as she's fighting a firebreathing Jimi Hendrix while some wizard watches in a crystal ball... but that's about it.

Anyway... I'll be painting the Bones version of her on this long weekend. The model itself actually has a really nice amount of detail and no funky spots caused by the casting (that I can find). I think I might have to freehand some of the texture on the trim of her armor, but still a good model over all. If only the Bones version of the Whispering Tyrant wasn't so crummy.... but alas.

I've already removed mine from her broccoli base, inserted a pin in her foot, and primered her black with Army Painter Black Primer. Just need to do a little touch up on the primer and she'll be ready to roll Friday night. 

Oh yeah... I painted some stuff (finally). See the dwarf in the back... he went in the Pinesol the next day.


Monday, April 25, 2016

On the table this week....


Some progress on a couple of projects this week. I managed to make some headway on the Viking dude from Red Box Games over the last couple of weekends. I'd have liked to be a little further along with him... but thanks to some minor health problems and work he's taking a bit longer. He is turning out really nicely though... the colors I chose are working will together. Just needs the shield and some details painted and he'll be done.

The elves beside him are another story. Only progress on those two was a basecoat of fleshtone... had left over when I was working on Viking dude. The one of the left is almost done... just some work on the flesh and some detailing and he'll be done. Elf on the right is a couple of steps behind his buddy. 

Beside the elves you'll notice a Zombie from Mantic games. He's the starting point on my Dragton Rampant Undead warband. I decided to spice up the appearance of the Undead by giving them some nicer basing treatments... aka chunks of Sculpey and plasticard. I have two groups of 12 of these guys to paint (and they only cost me 2 pts...). I'll also be fielding 3 units of skeletons, a unit of ghouls, and possibly a Dracolich or something along those lines. Not a fan of how Vampires are treated as an elite styled unit rather than a command option... especially since I have tons of Vampires from Warhammer to use.

Back to the left you'll see Achmed the Terrorist. Why am I painting him? Got the idea of painting up some whacky Zombicide alternative models... and he's the first one of the batch. Still working out exactly how to paint him up...I want to go for a black shirt, camo pants... maybe a black mask.. but I'm having some trouble figuring out the best approach for the black on him.

Beside him are the first two Vikings from my recent Gripping Beast purchase. These are by far the best Viking plastics ever. They aren't that different size and style wise from my Foundry and Black Tree Vikings, easy to assemble, AND they aren't posed like they have a stick up their ass. But fear not, my old Wargames Factory vikings are getting cannibalized for my Undead warband... mainly weapons and shields. I figure it'll help push the whole Draugr motif.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Yep, officially a skirmish wargame convert (and apparently a big Osprey Fan too)

For the past 20 years, I have struggled to find a balance in my miniature gaming hobby. Unfortunately, trying to find that perfect balance of painting, collecting, and gaming has been always unattainable. As hard as I try... I always end up focusing on the painting end of things (along with a healthy bit of hoarding all the "shiny" stuff I come across) and as a result, I game maybe once every five to seven years. 

Rather than get bogged down with something large scale... I'm focusing all my gaming efforts on small scale skirmish games. Right now I'm trying to assemble my warbands for a couple of fantasy games... Frostgrave, Of Gods and Mortals, and my new favorite at the moment, Dragon Rampant. 

What's so great about these games? For one, price point for getting into them is low... pretty much cost of book and that's it. Second, between the remnants of my old Warhammer stuff, my RPG models, and my historicals I have an unlimited amount of options for composing my warbands. Third, I'm not stuck painting the same type of models for a year so I can field an army.... I can stick to my usual scattergun approach. Fourth... it's a lot easier to get people to try a new mini game if they don't have to drop $250 on a starter force... unless they are new to the hobby, they should have something to field.

To be clear, I'm not dumping the big wargames completely. Still have my Orcs and Gobbo army for WHFB. I still have all of my vast legions of 40k models (although no way in hell I'm upgrading past third edition... as it's pretty much large scale Epic 40k now). I still have all my WW2 Russians for Bolt Action. I did say goodbye to Warhammer Ancients though... SAGA gets all my Vikings now.

Now someone talk Osprey into doing up some nice small scale sci fi skirmish games... I got a ton of Warzone stuff I need to do something with.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

On the table this week...



So this is my "in progress" pile at the moment along with some of the more recent finished items. It's a big pile, but one I hope to be done with before Gen Con this year. Most of my to do models are either Zombicide S1 and LotR Mirkwood Elves... with a few metal models scattered about. And poor Boba Fett... sitting there in that state for the last 5 months.

These two I've been working on over the weekend. The one on the left is almost done and the one on the right is about 75% the way there. I was painting them both at the same time, but once I got the the brown leathers I opted to finish them seperately. Makes sense as those areas require a little more TLC than the jerkins. I fully expect to be done with both and two more by this time next week.

For the record, not a fan of the kneeling elf's pose. Kinda meh... although each elf in that box is in a unique pose which is nice. Had the LotR plastics in the early 2000s been like that, I'd probably have bought more of them.

Here are a few finished models. The Vampire on the left is an old Reaper model from 2000-2001... I'd originally bought him to use as a Blood Dragon character. Now he's just a champion of some sort in my Undead collection. He'll probably be put in charge of a gaggle of skeletons.

Beside him is a skeleton from Mantic. I opted to give these a whirl as I was thinking about starting a KoW undead army. The model isn't bad despite some odd anatomy choices. I went for a sort of Wrath of the Lich King effect for his eyes... doesn't show up on a single model well, but I figure maybe in a group it would. Anyway, he's also part of my Undead collection... and will probably end up getting used for Frostgrave.

Dwarf on the right is one of the dwarfs I had for the Skullpass box set. Ended up painting him as I really though the standard and all the candles looked really neat. I did not do any fancy glows on him... went for more classic WD look.

Next up are some greenskins. The Orc is part of my WHFB Orcs and Gobbos army. I had thought about updating them to AoS... but I already have a Chaos horde for that... so I kept them compatible with WHFB 6th. 

The goblins to the right are from Red Box Games. I probably would have enjoyed painting them more if they weren't so frikkin' tiny. The Crone on the left was painted with a more classic Warhammer style goblin skin, while the champion to the right got a similar tone that the archer I painted last year got.

Last but not least, some models from Zombicide and Super Dungeon Explore. My efforts to make a dent in the pile of models I have to paint for those have been futile as this is as far as I've gotten since the holidays.

Still plan to push on with these and hopefully be done with most my S1 walkers by the time the rest of my Black Plague stuff arrives.

Also, you may have noticed I've gotten a nice big box of Vikings from Gripping Beast. I haven't given up on my Warhammer Ancients stuff. I just hope I can find someone who makes some nice plastic Bondi and Huscarls (not Wargames Factory...ugh...).

Yeah... not the greatest post after being silent for three months... but I plan to post more often if time permits.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

First post of the New Year...

...and screw the New Year's Resolutions.

I usually do one of these stupid posts every year and it contains a list of 20 or so miniature painting related "resolutions" that I pretty much ignore by end of the month. Let's be honest, we all at least make an attempt at changing things up... but as always the shit hits the fan and "good intentions" are the first casualty in "Shit has to get done!". 

So... rather than bore you with my crazy love of lists I am going to dive right into the whole miniature painting thing.


So what's new? Giants and Barbarians (technically they aren't new but I got around to working on them). When I think of fantasy, I pretty much immediately think of the art of Frank Frazetta and all those fantastic barbarian pieces he did. And it may come as no small surprise that I have a lot of barbarian miniatures. Oddly enough, I very seldom end up painting any of them. Well... until now.

The two fellows in the foreground are part of my Barbarian collection. The fellow on the left is part of a group of models I bought in 98 as part of a Dogs of War homebrew regiment. Not bad models although they changed sculptors in the middle and so the difference was quite jarring (although I love both Kev Adams and Kev White's work).

The other fellow is from Grenadier and sculpted by probably my favorite sculptor Mark Copplestone. Lucky for me, Mirliton rereleased all of these guys... so I can actually build an army of Conans... or I could if I could remember where my Wargames Illustrated with the army list was.

Painting wise, Barbarian #1 is done in a color scheme reminiscent of Chaos Undivided Marauders. Just can't justify more red considering I also have a pile of AoS Khorne guys to paint. His color scheme has pretty much kept to the three color rule... gray, brown, and flesh. I also used a fake zenithal light technique where I just picked out the "top stuff" with the final highlight. This is a battle line kinda guy... so I'm not really gonna throw a ton of time at shading or highlighting on him.

Barbarian #2 I used a color scheme of  brown, flesh, and gray... but I also added in some accent colors here and there. These are some of my favorite models so I wanted to give them a little more love. I used a style similar to Kevin Dalimore's for this guy... with some glazing to help my layers blend. I've always loved the way his barbarian models looked and I wanted mine to look the same.

In the background you will notice my three Partha giants... that I forgot I bought in 2013. For me Partha was always really hit or miss with their models... there are some real gems and there are some real duds. The giants... total gems. I think the first one I will tackle will be the Frost Giant. I have no idea what I'll use him for... but it's too cool of a model to care.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Once again, I paint a Bones model...

Since Reaper's Bones models came out a couple of years ago, I've been a little skeptical. Low price point and look good once painted... just a little too good to be true. About a year and a half ago, I picked up a few models on Ebay to give them a whirl... to see how they painted up and to see how much time and effort would have to go in to get them to a level I deem acceptable.

I started off with the Orc Champion in 2014. He painted up decently... although I regretted my choice of primer and I wasn't a fan of how bendy his axe was. Still, not a bad looking model when finished.

Size wise, I'd classify him as a Biggun.. but on the lower end of that spectrum. Bigger than a human model, but smaller than an Ogre or Giant.

At the time, the only other Bones model I had was Garnuk, the Ogre Champ. Definitely a potentially fun model to paint, but I wanted to check out some of the smaller Bones kits. As many people know, I am a fan of Dwarves... and if I could collect a big group of dwarf NPCs for under 20 bucks... that would be awesome. And so, I purchased some smaller models... human sized and down.

That brings us to Hellakin. I'd painted him before, so I figured why not go with a more familiar model. It took a bit of doing, but I got him painted up to a decent standard... not close to my usual "old school 'Eavy Metal" level... but close enough to use as an NPC. Again, not a fan of how bendy his dagger was... nor was I a fan of the primer color I used (Uniform Gray was not the best choice for detailed models).

Again, I didn't have a horrible experience with the model... just a "different" experience. I ended up going a little heavier on the Foundry painting style than I usually do, but in the end I think I ended up with a guy who'd prance about the wilderness stabbing folks with a poisoned knife.

And so, like a dumbass, I went smaller. It took forever to come up with a workflow that allowed me to get that kind of detail on the fur as the details were either really shallow... or just not there. I actually ended up hand highlighting some of the fur to get it to pop more. To be fair, a six pack of metal rats would set you back about $6-$7... where as I think these could be got for less than $3. Still, I think I'd have spent the extra $$$ and gotten metal.

After the rats, I decided to up the size a notch and went with a goblin. No photo... I hated that one so damn much I threw it away. 

Which brings me to my newest addition... the Mimic.

Not a bad model... although you might notice the line where the teeth got a little offset from the rest of the mouth. I tried to minimize it as much as possible, but there is only so much you can do... plus it's a Bones model and there is no way in hell I'm breaking out putty for it.

Still, I'm pretty happy with the end result. I'd be proud to place this on the tabletop and let it devour foolish adventureres.