Thursday, April 12, 2018

Monday, May 15, 2017

Irons in the fire

So many irons in the fire the last few weeks, it's been crazy.

However, to give you something to bide your time, here's my Reaper quarterly contest, Sir Conlan.

First Bones mini I ever painted, and the material stacks up well against anything else.  Very strange not to use primer though.  Very strange indeed.

A friend of mine has a much better photo setup, and now that I've been able to pick his brain, mine will get better too.  Much better (which I will tell all of you about too).

Monday, April 03, 2017


Today my daughter's bearded dragon, Buddy, passed away.  Not a happy day in our household.  She was so happy to get him, she saved her own money, learned everything she needed to and finally, here he was.

Some say reptiles don't make very good pets.  I'd say they're wrong, though to each their own.  He grew pretty quick, and eventually made for a good hat.

He was a pretty happy dude.  Enjoyed chasing crickets in his tank for breakfast, lounging on his log and looking out the window, and coming out to roam the living room and say hello to the cats.

He could be pretty cuddly too.  In the evening when it was time for bed he would happily crawl up into the crook of your neck and sit there, slowly falling asleep.  Put a blanket on him (it kept your body heat in for him) and he would lie there as long as you'd let him.

Most days I'd go in to say hi and give him a scritch on the top of his head or a nice stroke.  He enjoyed that, closing his eyes and revelling in the attention.

Climbing was something else he enjoyed.

He was a special guy, and it's been heartbreaking this evening.

Here's to you , Buddy.  Love you.  We'll miss you.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Ironclad approved

Over the last few months (and by last few I mean September and onwards), I managed to get a fair bit of painting done.  That, of course, when I wasn't working, doing family things or otherwise engaged.

From the cabinet comes my warjacks from the journeyman league last summer, who contributed to my 'best painted' award at the end.

For starters, the Ironclad.  A heavy warjack with a quake hammer and open fist.  The colours are very traditional Cygnar, which is one of the things I was initially attracted to.

The blue is the Cygnar Blue base shaded first with Exile Blue then Exile and Umbral Umber.  Careful on the blue/brown mix as you want to avoid muddiness.  Then use Cygnar Blue Highlight in several layers (increasing the mix of highlight until you're pure Cygnar Blue Highlight) with a finish layer of Highlight mixed with a touch of Morrow White.

The gold is Rhulic Gold shaded by brown ink/Sanguine Base mix, then some Umbral Umber into that mix for a final wash.  Clean up with Rhulic Gold again and highlight with Shining Gold.

The steel portions are pig iron followed by a mix of Exile Blue and Armour Wash.  Add in some Umbral Umber for a final shade (not too much or it gets 'muddy' looking).  Highlight with Cold Steel and Quicksilver and done!

Normally I paint from the inside out, meaning the areas recessed farthest in get done first.  In this case it was eyes and boiler grille first, using Heartfire and Ember Orange to give it a warm, firey glow.  The arcane bits in blue on the hammer are Arcane Blue with blue ink and Meredius Blue, using Morrow White for the mix.  Dials and gauges on the back are Hammerfall Khaki  with Morrow White.

The Cygnus on the hull was tough as yellow is a pain in the butt sometimes.  However, keeping the paint fluid and gradually building up from Rucksack Ran to Cygnar Yellow and beyond with Menoth White Highlight made it stand out nicely.

The bases on all of them are a wet layer of Umbral Umber (somewhere between a wash and paint) to get into all the recesses.  This is followed by a heavy drybrush of Bootstrap Leather and a final touch of Rucksack Tan.  Two thin lines for front/back facing and a cleanup of the black rim and the base is done.

Here's his buddy the Charger, a lovely 'jack with a dual cannon and a hammer for squashing those who get too close.  Same techniques on this one, and I think he looks rather spiffy.  Ready to lay some smack on the enemies of Cygnar.

Finally, a group shot with Major Beth Maddox.

And two more photos of the warlock mini from the previous post.  A bit better photo quality.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Warlock model

Here's some photos of a warlock model I completed for Reaper Miniatures' quarterly contest. How it works is the previous winner selects a mini ($10 or less) and anyone who wants to paint one up and submit a single photo can do so.  Winners are judged by amount of likes and you get a prize for the online store.

Here's the one I did for the contest.  I went with something different, in that yellow is a colour I very seldom use.  Yes, I use it for trim and a bunch of other smaller things, but never to date as the largest part of a model.  Honestly, it turned out better than I thought.

The base coat is P3 Heartfire paint, with Bloodstone and Brown ink used in various amounts for shading, and highlighted with Cygnar Yellow and Menoth White.  The actual contest winner was a splendid model, well deserving of the honour.  As my my guy, well, my photo quality was crap, which I think hurt me. The colour is way too yellow-ish in the background.  Next time I will have to work on the lighting.  Nevertheless, it was fun to do and I anticipate doing more of these, if for no reason than to push my painting further.

Thursday, January 05, 2017

Happy New Year 2017

Tomorrow there will be miniatures posts.  Mostly while I try to sort out a better photography setup.  Plus there has been quite a bit of painting since the Journeyman league and other chances to paint.

That said, happy new year to all in 2017 and I hope your holidays were good.

Monday, December 05, 2016

Warcasters and other miniature goodness

Another hiatus, and another long dearth of posting.

For those who might care, it happened that my later summer/fall got slammed with waaaaay too much work.  After my boss retired I took his duties for a month or so, then went full bore into teaching for 6+ hours a day, every day for most of October and half of November.  I'm still digging out from the pile, but am managing to leave (mostly) on time.  It's been a treat.

That said, prior to the madness, there was a Warmachine/Hordes Journeyman League held at Everything Games this past summer to coincide with the release of the Warmachine and Hordes mark III rules.  As such, my youngest and I participated in the league and had an absolute blast.  For those not in the know, a Journeyman league involves building your force from a starter box (essentially one warlock/warcaster and from two to four warbeasts/warjacks) to a mighty army of 75 points.  It also served to bring us up to speed on the new rules which, while not super different from mark II, had a few key changes.  Mostly, it sped up gameplay and made for more aggressive maneuvering and action, so overall, mark III gets a resounding thumbs up.

The league gives points for defeating opponents as well as painting miniatures over the course of the league.  You get a point per week for each win, as well as a point for having more painted (that means completed) models than the previous week.  The scenarios change as well, forcing you to give up your one-trick tactic and do something different.

Overall, a lot of fun, and I met a lot of cool players at EG who I would happily cross swords with again.  Sadly, the final tournament didn't happen as only three people showed up.  However, my youngest daughter took the Destroyer award (for most games won) while I took the Creator award (for best painted).  Out of a field of 20 or so, I'll take that!

Speaking of painted, I made good progress on my models for my Cygnar force.  First off is my warcaster, Major Beth Maddox.  She is new to the mark III release, and while it took me a game or three to start getting the hang of her gameplay, she turned out to be one of my favourite warcasters.

As a Stormblade turned warcaster, she is full of electro-goodness.  This gives her good synergy with other units, such as Stormblades or warjacks like the Firefly.  Frankly, she does a great job supporting an elite troop and several warjacks, by the end of the league I was really enjoying her and her battlegroup.

I do need to work on a better photo setup though.  Ah well, one thing at a time.

More model photos to follow, and a dissection of the list I finally developed during the league.