Thursday, 23 November 2017

I'm alright noooow

I am making some slow efforts to clear some items which have been hanging around partly done for a while. I sometimes find this quite a drag as items often end up partly finished because I have either lost enthusiasm for them or I no longer have any clear plans to use them. I've just completed the second batch of Tehnolog Werewolves which I started back in the summer. These ended up partly finished as I couldn't get them completed in time for the KoW campaign day and the largely werewolf based army I took to that even had its posterior kicked repeatedly resulting in me putting the army back into storage. I now have 4 hordes of werewolves painted up which is some serious overkill. If I'm honest I only bought this second pack as they were dirt cheap and with postage being the main cost adding a second made the deal look better.

I'm now trying to work on the Tehnolog 54mmm undead knights which I got at the same time to use as wights in my KoW army. Again this is more of a case of grinding through them as I have lost my enthusiasm for the miniatures as bit. I'm sure they will look great once they are done.

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

The green and the mean

And as usual October brings the Clash of Kings, and as per usual I decided to add something new to my army at the last minute. This time I decided I wanted to take the full complement of 3 war trombones with me and also the goblin living legend, Grogger Split-Tooth, from the Edge of the Abyss book. There is no official miniature for Grogger so I chose to paint up a Kevin Adams goblin warlord that I had to hand.

Both new additions did pretty well in the tournament, shame about the general!

Of course simply painting up two new items wasn't enough so I also went round and improved the basing on my entire goblin army because it seemed like a good idea at the time. My orcs and goblins suffer from being the first armies that I collected and the basing style could be described as dated (if you were being kind). To improve things I added clumps of a contrasting  dark green flock to the bases and washed all the flock with diluted PVA to blend in the colours. Once everything was dry I then added grass tufts and bushes to break up the plainer areas. Then end result makes them look a lot better then they did. The basing is still not fantastic but it never will be unless I completely re-base everything and that is not going to happen.

Friday, 13 October 2017

Dead Fast part 6

End of Day 9 (1 day remaining)
And here they are in all their glory (gory?). Yesterday was a busy day but I am now ready for tomorrow's event. Overall I am pretty pleased with how these have turned out. There are inevitable compromises when speed painting but time was limited and if I had spent any more time on them then I would not have been ready for the event.

 As well as basing all this lot I also got in my first game of TWD last night. I lost to Daniel but I now have a bit of a better grasp of how the game plays. Saturday is going to be tough playing against people with a lot more experience than me but it should be a laugh. By Sunday's survival day I should be in the swing of things.

That's it for now but I still have some more wave 2 miniatures to paint up and I think I've got the bug so I might pick up some more at the weekend. I'm not sure when I'll get round to painting them though as the Clash of Kings is in two weeks time and I will probably want to add something to my goblin army for that.

And of course that's another 26 to add to my painted pile for the year.

Thursday, 12 October 2017

Dead Fast part 5

End of Day 9 (2 days remaining)
The ongoing progress of time is merciless. It was always going to be a tough ask to get everything I wanted painted up for the events so I have had to switch focus on to getting what need painted up instead. In practical terms this means I won't get the last 5 survivors done so I have to hope I can put together a decent enough gang from the ones I have done.

The good news is that I finished painting the batch of 7 survivors that I had started work on.

 And the walkers too.

So this just leaves me with the task of learning the game and getting the miniatures based. As you can see from the shots above I have made a start on the basing. I am planning on doing something a little different from my usual grey gravel urban basing. I am hoping to key the bases in with my urban boards and match the colours and styles on there. Below are the first two tests of my new scheme. In the photo the look a bit rubbish but in real life with less magnification and without the start lighting they look okay to me. Before I set off on Friday I need to find time to roll this out to the remaining 23 miniatures

And that might have been easy ... but I still need to learn the game, play the game and pick my forces for Saturday and Sunday. Eeep, I'm not out of the woods yet.

And before I go I would like to do a little shout out to the Talking All Out War folks.  Your podcasts kept me going last night when I began to flag, nice work chaps.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Dead Fast part 4

End of Day 7 (4 days remaining)

I had hoped to do a load of work on these over the weekend but other commitments got in the way so the pressure is now on as this won't be a clear week either. Fortunately for me last night was productive and I managed to make a load of progress. 7 more of the survivors are now base coated, washed and in various stages of highlights.

The walkers are a little further behind with just base coat and wash at this stage.

Time is running short so I might have to limit my ambitions a little. Ideally I'd like to get all of the above finished and the remaining 5 survivors as well. I still need to leave time for basing as I had hoped to do something a little different from my usual technique. I may have to forget about the extra scenery (and the last 6 walkers) as I really can't see myself having enough time to get everything finished. Lets hope that tonight is another productive evening.

Friday, 6 October 2017

Dead Fast part 3

End of Day 3 (7 days remaining)

Last night was another full on painting session and the fruits of my labours are the first finished miniatures of the project. Well, I say finished but they aren't based yet. I'm holding off on the basing for now but it is on the to do list.

With TWD being a skirmish game it means that the models are going to be handled quite a lot so I made the decision to protect the paint jobs with a layer of satin varnish. I've noticed that once varnished the highlights usually seem a little dulled so I tried to highlight to a slightly lighter colour than I would usually to preserve the contrast.

And the walkers, I made a bit of mistake here - I applied Blood For the Blood God (gloss translucent red) before applying the varnish which meant it was no longer glossy afterwards. I ended up doing a second layer of BFTBG over the top and whist now glossy again some of the bloody bits are darker than I would have liked them to be. I'll know for the next lot anyway.

I have also made a start on the second batch of walkers from the starter set. For this batch I have gone for a more grey flesh tone. I have mixed different combinations of Russ Grey, Rotting Flesh and Cadian Feshtone.The colours haven't really come out very well in this photo but hopefully the different blends will be easier to see once I have them base coated and washed.

Wave 2 arrives
The postman brought me a whole pile of goodies yesterday. My band of 6 survivors has now been joined by 12 more and the walker count has gone up by 6. If possible I would like to get all of these done for the event but I'm not sure if I can manage that. I will prioritise the survivors that I think I might use in my group and see what I can complete in the time remaining. I now have plenty of choice for my group and I really need to start thinking of what I want to take - especially as I need to chose one model to represent me for the Survival Day. I need to build a custom character as myself and submit it by end of Sunday. I have some rules to read!

I think Tyresse will be painting priority number 1 as he looks like he is a pretty awesome character I think I should also prioritise a marksman and a runner as well. other than that I think I will be picking models to paint by following the rule of cool.

I think I need to work on my posture when I am painting. I ended up having to resort to using my foam roller a couple of times last night to sort my back out. My problem is that I have a tremor so I hunch over the model to try and brace my arms and that isn't very good for my upper back. You would have thought that after so many years of painting I would have learned by now.

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Dead Fast part 2

End of Day 2 (8 days remaining)
So far things are more or less going to plan. Managing to complete the base coating on the survivors on day 1 meant that I could apply a wash of Army Painter Dark Tone Ink straight after breakfast and leave it to dry.

After work I started work on the highlights. At this stage I am mostly re-applying the same colour as the base coat, building it up in thin layers to get a gradual shaded effect. I will then move on to mixing some brighter colours to pick out the extreme highlights and edges. These are still a long way from done.

I've been working on the walkers in parallel and these are now at a broadly similar stage to the survivors above. These will probably end up being done to a slightly lesser standard than the survivors unless I have more time than expected. After base coating I applied a wash of Army Painter Strong Tone Ink as I want these to look dirtier than the survivors. I will be doing the blood effects in two stages - here I have just applied Khorne Red over the base coat prior to washing. This gives a nice look for dried blood. Later on I will be applying Blood For the Blood God over the top in some places to give the effect of fresh blood.

So far things are more or less going according to plan. I got a little less done than I had hoped as I had to take a break part way through last night's painting session when my back started to get a little sore. I'm no longer used to being hunched up over my workbench for so long. Experience tells me that taking a break when that happens is a better course of action than ploughing on and paying for it later.

I have reinforcements coming in the mail any day now so I really need to push to get these completed so I can push on to the next batch. At some point I really need to take some time to read the rules and get in some practice games as well. I have 8 days - surely that's plenty of time!

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Dead fast

After slowly working though the upgrades for my KoW undead army it is time for a change of pace.

I had such a blast at the KoW international campaign day at Mantic HQ that I have ended up getting tickets for not one but two more up-coming events. Now here's the catch these events are for Mantic's The Walking Dead All Out War game. I own a copy of the game (purchases at Salute this year) but I have never played at.

The first event is the All Out War Tournament on Saturday October the 14th and the second is the Survival Day on Sunday October the 15th. Both events require me to have a fully painted survivor gang and some painted walkers as well. When I signed up for the events I hadn't even punched out the components from my set, let alone painted anything.

Looks like I am going to have to pull off a heroic effort to get myself ready for this so here goes.

Yesterday morning I grabbed my can of primer and got to work. Here are the survivors from the boxed set.

And here are the walkers to pit them against.

Having never played the game before I don't know how competitive the survivors from the boxed set are so I have some more stuff coming in the post which I will also need to get ready. I guess I will also need two full gangs for learning the game as Dan doesn't own any himself.

End of Day 1 (9 days remaining)
After a reasonably epic night's painting I now have all the starter set survivors base coated. At the moment they look pretty rubbish but a wash and a few highlights should be enough to make them look a bit better. I am aiming for a good table-top standard of painting when I am finished.

I have also made a start on some of the walkers. I'm not exactly sure what colour I want to do the flesh on the walkers so I have done the first batch as a mix of either flesh, rotting flesh or a blend of the two. I will see what works and adjust my colour scheme for the next batch accordingly.
This lot is still waiting impatiently for me to make a start.
So after the end of the first day things are going reasonably well. Another night like that and I will have broken the back of the starter set I reckon. That should hopefully mean I have a reasonably clear work bench for when the reinforcements arrive in the post. I have other several commitments before the events so I won't be able to pull this kind of painting session every night - I will need to get in some play test games for starters. If I do manage to blitz things I also have some more scenery to try and paint to take along with me - there is no rest for the wicked!

Dead Slow

With everything going on recently it has been difficulty to find the time and or motivation to pick up a paint brush. I've been picking away at some undead miniatures recently with a view to upgrading my KoW undead army in time for the Clash of Kings later this month. I got a motivation boost by signing up for the KoW international campaign day at Mantic HQ which spurred me on to finish a few items to take along with me.

First up we have a couple of mini place holder dragons. These are handy as KoW is a game in which miniature placement is really important and with many big beasties overhanging their bases it can be tough to place miniatures where they are actually meant to be when they are in combat. They are also handy when working out exactly where your model can move to and what line of sight they will have in their final position. Both tiny dragons are from Irregular Miniatures.

And with his big buddy.

 And the second one.

Also escaping the workbench is a horde of Tehnolog werewolves. These are cheap bendy plastic but still look decent painted up on the table top.

Here they are next to the Mantic equivalent. They are quite a lot bigger which means that 4 of them fill the base pretty well to make a horde.

I have a second horde nearing completion and some 54mm undead knights to use as wights still on the workbench.

Friday, 30 June 2017

What a smile

And with another tournament coming up (Alitibash IV tomorrow!) I have been spurred into painting something. This time round it is an Avatars of War vampire that I got as part of the job lot of undead in January. The paint job looks better in person as the highlights on the purple look rubbish in the photo.

I've also started work on a colour scheme tester for the skeletons I got as the same batch. So far it is looking good so I might well try and paint up a load of skeletons next.

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Rotten dragon

I've been slowly chipping away at things and I have now completed one of the two dragons I have been working on for my undead army. I bought this dragon new back in the 1980s from my local model shop. It was originally sold as a Grenadier Chaos Dragon when it was released in 1985. I remember it coming with AD&D stats in the box which would have made it a truly lethal opponent. You can see some photos over on Miniatures Workshop of the original packaging and so on.

I did try and paint it when I first bought it (and one or two times since) but never managed to finish the job. I recall that teenage me could never get the dragon's wings to stay attached but all I had back then was the really slow acting araldite. In the 1990s I tried pinning the wings and attaching them with super glue with a bit more success but the wire I had back then was way to thin. Recently I stripped the dragon and re-attached the wings with some decent wire and got it ready for another attempt at painting.

Using the techniques I have been using on the mantic zombies I have finally managed to finish the job - it only took me about 30 years! Hear that lead pile? There's hope for you guys yet!

The washer on the base allows a "rider" to be added as shown on one of the photos. The base of the Mantic vampire is magnetised so she can be easily attached to or removed from the base as required.

I'm still working on the LOTR Nazgul on winged beast - that one seems to be taking a little longer to finish.

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Endless zombies

I think I might finally be back in the swing of things or getting there at least. After much prodding by Dan I signed up for a Kings of War Tournament in Leigh, Lancashire. At the moment I only have my elves and my undead armies out of storage and decided to go with the undead for the event.

My KoW undead were bought and planned under first edition KoW and weren't really optimal for the current meta. I had already purchased some additions to the list to try and make them more competitive. The zombie legion is the first of them that I have completed. It is a massive tar pit and should hold parts of the enemy army up long enough for me to line up some decent charges with my hammer units.

I think it has turned out pretty well and it matches the older zombie units that I did a while back.

I have two dragons for the undead army in progress - they were meant to be finished for the event yesterday but the zombies took longer to complete than I had expected. I got them presentable enough for the event but they still need some more work before I will declare them finished.

The event itself was great fun and I ended up placing 4th with my only defeat being to Tom who went on to win the event.

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Splinter Cell

My hobby mojo has been really stuttering this year whilst I deal with other more important issues. Back in late March I had a quick flurry of enthusiasm and bought myself a Black Scorpion Miniatures Treeman to act as a Forest Warden in my Kings of War Elf army. It is a miniature I had admired for some years but had been put off by the postage cost (£14.40 for the miniature and £4.20 postage!). This time around I decided to go for it regardless and see if that inspired me to pick up my paintbrushes again.

It is a nice miniature but it still took me about 6 weeks to get him finished. Still I'd say that slow progress is better than no progress.

 And here is is with some of his woodland chums -Mantic Forest Shamblers and a GW LOTR Treeman as a Tree Herder.

Elsewhere I got a bit of a surprise when clearing out the study when I turned up another 10 Mantic Elf Kindred Gladestalkers (Scouts) assembled and primed ready for painting. I had thought that I was done painting up elf infantry but it looks like I have a little more work left to do on that front.