19 March 2017

L, Xl, 2XL

Comparison shot of one of my completed Reaper orc-to-Fomorian conversions, the champion I just started on, and the Reaper ogre (?) figure that I'm converting next for a big brute or major hero Fomorian. I'm going to sculpt an all new head just for him.

18 March 2017

In the Marsh - St. Patrick's Day?

Does it count as a St. Patrick's day thing to work on miniatures inspired by Irish myth? 

I finished the the Troll Outpost swamp mercenary/Fomorian/Fimir.

I've finished the sculpting work on the Reaper orc conversion. I happened to have one of my (very) few resin cast tails available, so I used that. The foot looks big in the photo, but I swear, it's not that far out of proportion IRL! Also prepped the four classic Citadel Fimir Fianna/Nobles. The guy on the left was originally mine back in the day, but had been converted to a champion of Slaanesh in the 3rd ed. RoC days, and had wings and a bright paintjob. At some point I gave it to a friend who was collecting Fimir because I figured that was a better use for it, and eventually it (along with the rest of his small but almost complete Fimir collection) made it's way back to me last year.

So that's what I will probably be working on next for the Month of Marsh!

16 March 2017

Fomorian Heroes WIP

Got a little bit of time to work on a couple of Fomorian heroes! Both in varying stages of completion. The one on the left (former Troll Outpost figure) is about 80% painted, and still needs a base. Just started converting the one on the right. Still need to clean up the neck joint, sculpt feet and a tail before I can start painting.

I have decided that I am completely on board with the idea that Fimir reproduce by burying sacrificial victims alive in the swamp and engaging in some sort of spooky voodoo to raise them back up as new members of the clan. I figure all of those variables can account for the subtle differences in in morphology of some of the figures (number of digits, digitigrade vs. plantigrade, etc.) and also relates to a few different fantasy sources I dig.

Still working out what to do about further conversions (still waiting on Reaper Bones 3 Kickstarter delivery...) Also thinking about allied or mercenary troops. Thinking about half-orcs, undead, or....?

12 March 2017

Late to the Marsh

Been busy with other things, so just finally squeezed in a little time this weekend to finish up these eight figures I had started last summer. Converted from Citadel plastic savage orcs, using my resin Fomorian heads.

They will serve as lesser Fomorian warriors, or regular Fimm for WFB.

11 March 2017

Mad Cows

Minotaurs, painted for the same person for whom I previously painted a few beastmen. Although I loved the beastmen, I'm not terribly fond of these plastic minotaur figures.

Probably won't be painting much more commission work for the foreseeable future.

07 March 2017

March and April

Last year I partipated in Fimm McCool's "Month of Marsh" March painting challenge, which is sort of like Orctober, Deadcember, etc. for those of us who are partial to Fomorians, Fimir, and other marsh dwelling creeps.

I love these painting challenges, so that's my plan again. Theoretically. March is starting off a bit busy, but my plan is to finish up the 8 converted plastic Citadel orcs I started last summer, and, if possible, maybe paint the oldschool lead Citadel Fimir nobles/fianna (one each, four figures) that are still waiting in the bin.

After that I am looking forward to my own April Fool's errand, repeating my mostly one-man Big April Giant Challenge.

On the table this year is:

  • The Warploque Giant, which I never got to last year. 
  • The oldschool Tom Meier giant I recently acquired.
  • The Citadel C28 giant that I apparently neglected to post photos of -- I got him minus a weapon, so I sculpted a club for him. Actually five clubs, because I had some scale problems.
  • The Otherworld Giant. The last of my "priority" giants. I just finished a large/overdue commission, so I splurged and used some of the proceeds to buying one. I'm assuming it gets here in time.
  • The last of the metal giants produced by Citadel before they switched to plastic & resin.
  • Reaper's Svetlana, Frost Giant. (I was going to get this figure in metal eventually, but got a cheap Bones version for the moment.)

At least that's the pool from which I will paint. I only got 3 done last year, so completing all of those would be a bit over-optimistic. But, hey, I can dream.

That's it for now. Been writing up some more backstory for my campaign ideas. 

26 February 2017

Rust Tutorial

I've had quite a few questions about how I paint my rusty metals, especially since starting the undead/skeletons. I've previously given a brief description and a pic of the paints I use. I also mentioned possibly doing a step-by-step at some point. So... here it is.

Previously, I took a pic of the paints I use. This occasionally varies a bit, but is usually similar. Pretty close to the step by step below. Sometimes I add a reddish-brown before the darkest orange. I've also started to abandon the Citadel metallic paints, as the quality seems to be in decline recently. None of this is required. I'm experimenting with homemade washes, for example. And I've also found a P3 orange that I really like and sometimes use in place of the middle orange. Whatever feels right for any given figure or project. "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of small minds." (Emerson.)

Here's the big step by step pic (click to enlarge or download.)

1. Metallic base. In this case I did a Vallejo silver, then a Citadel Nuln Oil wash, then highlights of silver, and then a second wash. Normally I would only do the two steps, but since this figure is almost nothing but armour, I wanted to spend some extra time on it.

2. First layer of rust, with the darkest orange. This is applied with the tip of a fairly large brush, in a manner not unlike stippling. I usually refer to it as "brush mashing," though it's a little more delicate than that may imply. Still rough on the brushes. (I rarely spend a lot on expensive. brushes.)

3. Second rust layer with the middle orange. This overlaps the first layer to a large degree, but not entirely. In this particular case, this color/bottle of paint is not as opaque as the others, which I really like. More brush mashing.

4. Third rust layer, with the lightest orange. Still brush mashing, but more delicately. I like smaller splotches of this light color. Again, quite a bit of overlapping with the two previous layers, but not entirely. This third level really gives some punch to the depth of the rust and color on the figure.

5. Translucent blacklining. Remember blacklining? It was one of the early painting techniques I learned, and seems to have fallen out of favor as being a bit harsh. Never throw anything away -- including techniques/skills. You never know when they might be useful. Take a look at the difference between steps 4 and 5. Tell me which one looks more like a coat of plates and which looks more like a rigid rusting statue. In this case I have replaced opaque black paint with a thin wash -- in this case using Citadel Nuln oil, but (again) a home-brewed thin ink wash would also work. Using a very fine (and possibly more expensive than the others) brush, give a quick black line under each of the armour plate joints and other spots in heavy shadow.

6. Highlights with silver. This compliments step 5 somewhat, but also gives a bit of "life" to the rusty metal, by (hopefully) giving the appearance that the metal is still in use and rust is being scraped away. So with that in mind, I use technique that's somewhere in an intersection between drybrushing, overbrushing, and feathering. I use a pretty dry brush, and I tend to hit the edges as in both drybrushing and overbrushing, but I also like to feather the silver into flat areas too. So it looks like metal plates scrape against each other, ridges rub against other objects, and blades actually cut through things -- all scraping away a bit of the rust, exposing steel (or whatever) beneath.

7. The metal is the same as the previous image, but with non-metal details painted, and the photo not a over-exposed as in step 6.

So that's it. My rust. Not rust. Just mine. Take a look at rusty objects. Take pics and start a collection. I did. Then see what you think will look good on figures. I like this version of rust because it stands out, yet is still harmonious, with the rest of the colors I've been using.

21 February 2017

Finished Unit of JTC Crossbow

I finished the converted pennon/standard bearer for the crossbow unit. I would still like to add a badge to the banner, but have not made up my mind yet. I may plan that out for various units when I get further into the project.

A group shot, including the above figure and champion, the first sample figure from Westfalia. He's painted in different colors, but I will let that slide as a matter of personal choice by the Captain of the Crossbow.

Overall... great figures. Easy to paint & look great. Very happy with how they turned out, and regret that I didn't get more. So at least one more unit this size is now on my wish list.