Thursday 30 June 2011

Old stuff

So here we have some old bits and bobs from the 'good' old days. Who'd have thunk that GW would have been producing metal WCs for our convenience (pun intended)?

This ranger is still one of my favorite models, I'm pretty sure this is Bruce Campbell. You should note the use of Humbrol Enamel paints throughout and I strung the bow! I don't know where that flesh colour came from but it's quite cool and all-in-all I think if I were to just do A Devlan Mud wash over it he'd look awesome, with a few additional highlights. What I've done though is dump him in the Dettol so he may well make a reappearance at some point.

Next up the the lead [pb] stylings of one Thomas Crapper. A bit chipped now but I was still trying to put highlights on with the old Humbrol Enamel.

King Arthur: [after Arthur's cut off both of the Black Knight's arms] Look, you stupid Bastard. You've got no arms left.
Black Knight: Yes I have.
King Arthur: *Look*!
Black Knight: It's just a flesh wound.
'Scuse my language but it's not like I can edit Monty Python is it? Anyway this Samurai seems to have lost his footing. Not sure what conversion I was trying to do but I'm gutted now that I did. I'd love to Dettol bath this and try again. The funny thing is even though the painting could be so much better, because these figures have been like this for soooo long I doubt even a Golden Demon winning repaint could enhance these miniatures in my mind, we'll see with the Ranger though...


Tuesday 28 June 2011

WFB - Empire Ogres [such as they were]

As oft promised here's a whole lot of Ogres. Back in the day when you could have Ogres freely tramping round your Empire army like the jovial brutes they were, not the blood obsessed psychopaths they're now portrayed as in Ogre Kingdoms I got a few. Luckily Falmouth's Toymaster shop [still there] had a few old boxes of the Ogre expansion box for Heroquest and I was able to get them cheap [I think £6 a box]. As you can see there was seven Ogres per box in four different poses. Now by today's standards the plastic isn't great but I think they stand up well considering some of the output GW was producing in plastic at the time.

This set of seven weren't complete but were painted in the colours of Ostland and to take advantage of some minotaur decals from the Mk 1 Land Raider decal sheet, because the minotaur was also the symbol of Ostland. They would have fit lovely on the white backs of these guys.

This set was painted in the mirror fashion of the other set. Again I was really happy with my painting at this time. It's scruffy but bold and I was getting stuff painted a feat here-to unheard of in my history of figure painting. Just getting it done with bold colours and a gaming level of finish was a blessed relief and very rewarding. I think perhaps it's a lesson to everyone who paints, to do some to the best of your ability then do some for gaming level and then when you come out the other side you should be able to find a happy medium of the two!

Here we have some random Ogre. I think it was another figure I inherited from one of my gaming circle, probably someone who gave up. I think he was going to be my champion, not that I think you could have champions in your list but his colour scheme managed to match with the other guys but also stand out a little bit.

Lastly, 15 Ogres on the charge, shame about the missing model railway ballast. Would have made a nice shot if they'd all been based. There were a couple of missing guys - at the time Shreddies were giving away these soft plastic toys. There were a few that looked like the Hunchback of Notre Dame which I was going to throw in too, purely because my mate Liam, he of the scratch built Warhound and Warlord fame, had dug up a few that looked like the 4th edition Cave Troll that came out and had painted them up!

Sunday 26 June 2011

WFB - Knights of the White Wolf

Here's my unit of Knights of the White Wolf. I was particularly pleased with these. I went for a deep blue 'enamled steel' potentially a cartoon form of non-metallic metals I still like the results. The Humbrol Acrylic gloss red helped with their flowing ginger locks, although the grandmaster is a bit more grey in the beard.

Never got round to tackling the horses, red was still an issue for me at this stage and Humbrol Acrylic gloss red wasn't going to suit such large areas of barding which is why I looked at the grey alternative, which I promptly dismissed.

Here's the grandmaster in all his glory.

Friday 24 June 2011

Terrain is everything - Now that's a 'finecast'!

Thanks to pete the pagan-gerbil from A Year of Frugal Gaming commenting recently about where I get my modelling materials I had time to think about plasticard. It's not really a material I use much of but I was thinking about how I would get my hands on some if the need arose.

Well there's always the quick and dirty options that don't act like plasticard but do have some of the properties and most of all are cheap. CD Jewel Cases are one option but you have to be careful because they can shatter and be deadly, so aren't ideal for cutting up. An alternative are old DVD cases. You can get just short of an A5 sheet of slightly textured plastic that can be cut, bent and carved for next to nothing.

But I think the cheapest most varied option is food trays. Chicken and meat trays are vac-formed with marvellous patterns on to help drain juices away. Of course one downside is durability and sometimes the thinnness of the material doesn't seem solid enough. There is a solution though which offers more answers than the questions...

When I produced my first building I mixed up a large batch of undercoat, my classic recipe:
  • black interior house paint [because I have a large pot of it]
  • black Early Learning Centre poster paint [for bulk and to offset the satin finish of the house paint with it's powderiness]
  • Polyfilla, er filler [to make it have a bit of texture and bulk]
  • PVA glue [bulk and make it more adhesive to the building]
  • I used the chicken tray below to mix it all up in. This is the solution to making your plastic tray more sturdy. You could substitute all of the above for some plaster and when it sets the material will be strong enough to handle all knocks and scrapes.

    Alternatively the use of PVA and acrylic paints meant that the excess paint I didn't use ended up casting pretty well. It's a bit lumpy on the back but nothing a quick sand couldn't improve and maybe one day I'll find a use for this, maybe as some treads for steps. So you can use the plastic tray as is, make it rigid with plaster or cast from the inside with a PVA solution. Regardless you have some nifty new textures to apply to building or use wholesale as floors etc.

Wednesday 22 June 2011

Deathwing progress

The Dawn of War marathons continue apace but I have been painting some bits. I've added another layer of paint to my AoBR Tactical Squad but once again reached a point where I'm not confident enough to continue. So I thought I'd just do something I am confident with - more Bonewhite! Having added the sepia to my Deathwing I then added some of my rapidly diminishing reserves of Devlan Mud in some of the most obvious shadowed areas and it was then on to putting Bonewhite on as a highlight. I was considering some form of stippling. I really wanted to come up with a solution to smooth blending and perhaps create a more painterly style. Something that looked like the marines are hand painting their own armour and a way to get around my issues with the DA green. In the end it's all gone flat anyway so I'll guess I'll just stick to the tried and tested way of doing things.

These pics have been taken on my phone, just testing to see what quality I can get with it as it's quite easy to update my blog this way. The quality seems OK, except for the distinct lack of saturation in the pics. Not something I want when I'm trying to show off colours and nothing Photoshop couldn't correct but nevermind, we'll resolve convenience versus quality another day.

I've read other blogs where folk have a real beef with Bonewhite and it's vague levels of opacity but I really like it. You can still see some of the washes through it which I think is as it should be. Why go to the trouble of putting it them when you are going to cover them? My next stumbling block [aside from painting the remaining four Terminators] is my accent colours - how much red, green and metallics? I certainly want to look at bronze for my metals, I've got that working and I can add in some verdigris where necessary. I think the chest eagle might be good for this... I'm also thinking Mechrite red on the hoses might be cool. Most importantly though, I think Crux Terminatus should reflect the natural stone of Ferron-Proxima [which I suppose is highlighted Mechrite, whatever]. I've never been a huge fan of the grey stone and if I'm playing Ferron-Proxima as a Dark Angels recruitment world it would make sense to use the red rock as the alternative sandstone is just never going to show up on the Bonewhite, as it's the same colour!

Anyway, here's a quick P'shop mock up, maybe unconvincing myself that the red pipes are cool?! Also the seal will be green wax... it's decisions like these that stall a project. Anyway, thoughts are appreciated and if you have any idea what to put on his fist I'm listening.

On a side-note my DoW gaming has become a little more tedious than usual. I played one level which was phenomenally difficult because of a relentless tide of Orks, despite it being only a level 6 province [they go up to 11 in defence]. In the end I had to sacrifice a whole lot of structures while I deep-struck Dreadnought after Dreadnought into the Ork base in an attempt to destroy his HQ. Now the remaining provinces aren't much more defended but I'm still struggling a great deal. It's not like I'm playing this on easy either. Still, success with this Terminator and less desire for PC gaming can only result in more painting. I really can't wait to see some of these finished...

Monday 20 June 2011

Terrain is everything - Vent Tower pt 5. RESOLUTION

Suggestions still welcome for a new name for the 'Vent Tower'. I've managed to resolve all my issues with this building and expand it way beyond my initial concept and the end result is much better than I could have hoped for. There's far more detailing than any of my other buildings and considerably more thought, blood, sweat and tears gone into it's construction.

Here's the studded front door. I finally got some pins to stud the door with and they've come out really well. Can't say I'm convinced those hinges are functional but what you gonna do...? You can also see the roofing detail on the door arch. This will be copper/verdigrised like the Honored Imperium Statue [I'm looking forward to that!]. These strips were all done in card. I'd thought to use some plasticard strips so they wouldn't warp horizontally but cutting card was easier and the PVA saturates the card so it moulded to the curve of the arch whereas the plasticard would have always wanted to spring back to being straight. In the end there was little horizontal warping so it's all good.

Here's the fire port in the roof, so you could 8 people shooting from this building! Some detail work on the spires, more strips of card for the masonry work.

Use of the Ravenwing upgrade sprue to just add a Dark Angel vibe to the structure and not leave the surface so flat. Also a close up of the inside of one spire to see how my card work covered up some of untidy bits. Probably not the exact bits to cut and I don't know how to put this in the future STC [that bit may be left 'corrupted' in the template ;) ] but you can try and gather what was done. 

The other spire and how it was tidied up, a bit neater than the first. Also a close-up of the door if it helps. I also possibly need to trim some of the reinforcements on the base, you can see there's quite a gap between the bottom and the floor so a quick trim will resolve that. Still to decide if I should mount it on MDF. It'd be more stable and robust but part of me thinks it'd be better without.

Some more views in it's original 'stunted' state. Last time you saw this the two bar railing was only a Photoshop fantasy. You can also see where the template papers spray mount has delaminated. Sometimes it's necessary to pull these off. The tearing can also add a bit of texture.

Here's the extension...

... and here are the three separate components and their modular 'plugs' to fit them together [all masked up to prevent aerosols melting the foam core].

Saturday 18 June 2011

Ice Magic baby

A while back I was discussing the awesome Ice Magic rules for use by Tzarina Katarina, the Ice Queen of Kislev. And of course I expanded that to include Ice Wizards of any level with my Heroquest Ice Wizard.

Anyway, I thought I'd finally upload the rules so you can see what I was on about. So, what's cool? 

Power 1. Freeze Water. Allows you to freeze any body of water. An easy way to get across that river or tempt your opponent to do so only to hit it with a Bright Wizard spell which automatically unfreezes the water.

Power 2. Bridge of Ice. Transport a friendly unit up to 18" in any direction, even into combat!

Pwer 3. Chill Blast. 2D6 S5 hits up to 24" with no armour saving throws!

There's still some other cool spells but sadly none of these include the ability to coat your opponent in liquid chocolatey goodnees and then set rock solid in a couple of minutes immobolising them so you can despatch at your pleasure, YUM, YUM!