Thursday 30 April 2015

Recent Work

Just a quick update tonight to show a model I recently completed for a reboot of the painting competition on the Steve Dean Forum.

I started this for one of the bonus rounds on the Analogue Hobbies Challenge but didn't get it finished in time.
I've always liked the old Citadel Sisters of Battle figures and this was very enjoyable to paint.  I may change the base to a resin one in the future.

I made it through the first round but it's deservedly going out to some very nice 15mm Empire knights which you can see here.

I plan to paint more one off figures like this from now on as they break up the army painting and allow me to try techniques and colours I don't normally use.

The first unit of skeleton cavalry should be finished over the weekend with pictures to follow shortly afterwards.

Sunday 22 March 2015

Analogue Challenge Review

So the Analogue Challenge has come to an end and I must thank Curt for running an excellent challenge which I have thoroughly enjoyed.  Sadly, I missed the last few days due to the death of our family dog.  I really didn’t feel like painting immediately after this and so didn’t finish my final entries before the deadline.  I’ll look to get these completed over the next week or so.

Looking back over the challenge, I’m quite pleased with what I achieved in a little over two months:

84 x 28mm Infantry
45 x 6mm artillery pieces plus 180 crew figures
40 x 6mm Dragoons

This totalled 695 points, so a fell short of my 1,000 point target.  However, this hasn’t detracted from my enjoyment of the challenge and I have learned a lot about painting to deadlines as well as getting a number of stalled projects back up and running again.  I certainly hope Curt runs the competition again later this year.

I’ll also use the points system from the Challenge to keep a track of what I manage to paint this year against any new figures that come in.  Hopefully, I can make a dent in the lead pile by the end of the year.

In the immediate term I’ll be focussing on a couple of main projects:

  • 6mm Napoleonics – I’d like to get the Russian and French forces completed for the battle of Montmirail.  After this I’ll move onto the Prussians.
  • 28mm Arthurians – I have a number of undercoated figures languishing in a box file which I’d like to get finished off.  The Arthurian army has waited too long for new additions.  I’m looking at different forms of basing for these figures as I want to play Saga and Impetus/Hail Caesar with the same figures.
  • Oldhammer – I’ll be finishing off the undead force I started in the challenge before moving  onto a few other figures that I want to get painted.

Apart from these, I’d also like to try and complete some of the various figures I have lying around in boxes that have been undercoated or part painted over the years and then forgotten about.

The one thing I’ve taken away from the Challenge is the discipline of getting a unit fully finished (including basing) before moving onto something else and this is something that I’m going to try and stick to for the remainder of this year.

So in coming weeks you should see two units of undead cavalry and 90 Russian Cossacks followed by a mixed bag of figures.

Saturday 14 March 2015

Empire of the Dead - Burke & Hare

So the last theme round was anti-hero, at first I thought this meant villain but a quick interweb search revealed that it is in fact  "a main character in a story who lacks conventional heroic qualities such as idealism, courage, and morality."  A bit of thinking and research and I knew who I wanted to paint for my entry.  
Burke & Hare made almost loveable by Simon Pegg and Andy Sirkis in their 2010 film. 

I started searching for figure suppliers and found to my pleasant surprise that I already had the figures from an Empire of the Dead Kickstarter I had sponsored with West Wind a few years ago.  A quick trawl through my figure boxes, a few splashes of paint and the odd grass tuft and my entry was complete.
The Burke and Hare murders were committed in Edinburgh over a period of ten months in 1828.  The killings were attributed to Irish immigrants William Burke and William Hare who sold the corpses of their 16 victims to a local doctor as dissection material for his anatomy lectures.  The advances in medical science meant that demand for cadavers far outstripped supply, a shortage that our entrepreneurial duo helped to solve.

They were eventually caught, however, the evidence against them was far from conclusive and in order to secure a conviction Hare was offered the opportunity "to turn King's evidence", i.e. be granted immunity from prosecution if he confessed and agreed to testify against Burke.  Hare agreed and walked free whilst Burke was convicted and hanged on 28th January 1829, he was dissected the following day in the same college lecture theatre as his victims.
I really enjoyed painting these two figures, they're the first ones I've done from the Empire of the Dead range and I'm very impressed with the sculpting and casting quality.  I painted the figures in a weekend and then completed the basing over three or four days.  I'll certainly be painting more of these over the coming months.
These figures are also my Curtgeld and so they'll soon be winging their way towards their new home in Canada.

Thursday 12 March 2015

Skeleton Unit Completed

This weeks entry to the Challenge was another unit of 26 Skeleton Warriors which netted me another 130 points to take my total to 590 so far.

I've posted more picture and details on my Oldhammer blog along with a picture of the army so far.

I also completed my entry into the anti-hero theme round which should net me some additional points and take my total to around 650 points.  I'll post pictures and details on these once voting on the theme round is finished.

I have a unit of 10 skeleton cavalry half painted, these should be finished in the next day or so.  Following these will be the 90 6mm Cossacks for my Napoleonic Russians I started a couple of weeks ago, I'm aiming to have these completed by Monday morning.  This will leave me with five days to gain another 160 points, for these I plan to paint up 38 Dark Age Saxon skirmishers to go with my Arthurian army.

It should be an interesting week.

Wednesday 4 March 2015

Skeleton WIP and new book

Just a quick update today.

I've managed to complete the extra Skeletons I needed for the third block of infantry.  I've just finished adding sand and stones to the base so once it's dry I can get on with ink washes and highlighting.

I've also completed my entry for the Challenge theme round and will be finishing off the bases on these tonight and tomorrow.  No pictures yet as I want them to be a surprise for Curt who will be receiving them in the next few weeks as my entry fee for this year's competition.

I also received an unexpected parcel today from Wayland Games, well unexpected in terms of the contents:

I forgot I'd pre-ordered this a couple of months ago,  I don't collect the Infinity figures but I do use the same paints (Vallejo) as Angel and so I was hoping to pick up the odd tip or two.  After an hour flicking through it earlier I have to say I'm really pleased I bought it.  The book is basically one big collection of step by step painting articles showing loads of techniques with both brush and air-brush.  It comes with a free exclusive miniature which is the subject of one of the painting articles in the book, a nice touch.

You can find out more here.

I'll post a more detailed review in the next couple of days.

Saturday 28 February 2015

Oldhammer Skeleton Warriors

This weeks challenge entry was a unit of 26 skeleton warriors, these were produced by Citadel in the 1980's. 

I've posted more pictures and details on my Oldhammer blog along with a couple of pictures of the army so far.
This entry netted me 130 points and takes my total to 460 points so far.  I now have three more weeks to get this over the 1000 point mark.  It will be a struggle but I should get there or at least come close.  I will be submitting another unit of 26 skeleton's next week along with an entry into the Theme round which should take my points to around 650.

I've put the 6mm Cossacks on hold for the moment whilst I get my theme round entry completed.  The last theme is anti-hero, I thought this meant villain but the actual definition is "a main character in a story who lacks conventional heroic qualities such as idealism, courage, and morality."  A bit of thinking and research and I knew who I wanted to paint for my entry.  I then searched suppliers for the right figures and found that I already had them from a Kickstarter I funded a couple of years ago.  These figures will also be my Curtgeld (entry fee for the challenge) and so I want to take my time and do the best job I can.

I'll get these and the remaining skeletons completed and submitted next week. I should then be able to complete the Cossacks the following week along with some Skeleton cavalry leaving me with a target of approximately 160 points for the final week.  Just about do-able.

Friday 20 February 2015

Man-Flu and Oldhammer

Looks like I brought a case of man-flu back from London with me this week.  Nothing too major but enough to ensure I missed my posting deadline last night.  Quite frustrating as I had some 28mm figures finished and ready for photographing.  I'll have to submit them next week now.

I always planned to paint a number of 28mm figures as part of the competition, I brought forward the start of these as I'm spending so much time away from home during the week and need something light to transport and relatively simple to paint.

I have a load of old Citadel figures and paints from the 1980's that I'd like to get painted over the next few years.  This started during the revival of Warhammer Fantasy 3rd edition or 'Oldhammer' as it's now been called.  I have hundreds of the plastic skeletons and had always wanted to paint up an undead army. I planned to start this a couple of years ago but never got much beyond designing an army and undercoating a few skeleton cavalry figures.

Given that the undead are light and do not need too many paints, I've decided to try and paint as many rank and file skeletons as I can before the competition ends.  I'm restricting myself to the original citadel paints for the figures as I still have all of these and they are still useable after nearly thirty years.  I will be using modern day tufts for the bases though as these are so nice compared to old static grass.

I started painting the skeletons a couple of weeks and submitted a couple of units to the Analogue Challenge last week.

I painted up 10 archers initially as I wanted a small number of figures to practice painting bone.  I like how these turned out.

Next up was 20 Grim Reapers, skeletons armed with two handed scythes.  I'm really pleased with the way the wooden handles turned out.

The bases consist of three different colored tufts highlighted with Miniature Paints Cream.  I chose these colours as I want the vegetation to look like it has had the life sucked out of it by the Undead forces as they advance.  I think this has worked out quite nicely.

I've really enjoyed painting these figures, it took me back to when I first started painting and had to experiment with paint mixes to get the colours I wanted as there weren't too many shades around initially.

I should be able to complete another skeleton before next Thursday, I have 14 figures already complete so only need another 12.  I'm at home every night next week as well so should be able to get complete the 90 Cossacks as well.  This combined with the skeletons will take me over the 500 point mark.