30 July 2009

WF German & Roman generals

Someone asked me how the WF metal warlord scaled up to their plastic Germans:


Following the german is Wargames Factory's new metal Roman General:


And here's how he scales up in a unit of plastic legion:

28 July 2009

Repanse

Price of admission to the Grillin' Cheesefest this past week was a painted figure to put into a pool and randomly traded off to one of the other attendees. Here's my contribution, Repanse from WFB. It was in a sealed box, one of two. The little classic gobbo "flipping the bird" was in the other. I made a mystery game of it. This was the box the recipient randomly chose.

After the pic was taken, I hit it with a few layers of clearcoat (Krylon UV protection, matte) and that helped level off the uneven sheen left on the standard from the GW washes.





The figure I recieved was another classic figure, one of the oldschool plaguebearers. A cool figure, especially since I was an old Nurgle player back in the days of the Realms of Chaos books up through the Ravening Hordes lists. Brings back the memories. :D I'll try to post a pic of him soon.

27 July 2009

Shermann the German

Sneaky Peeky of Wargames Factory's new Ancient German general. I've named him Shermann (Hermann's lesser known second cousin.)

I'm going to add some stripes or tartan to him, since I'm on a roll with that. I love the figure, but I'm disappointed with my painting. But I haven't decided how/what yet. So he's done for the moment. I will leave him sitting on my desk as I paint other stuff so I can ponder how to finish him.


Grover's Grillin' Cheesefest

This weekend a friend from the local game store hosted his summer "cheesefest," which is a full day of gaming and grilling. Other than a brief rain shower, the weather was mild and pleasant. We stayed dry and in the shade thanks to a large tent/canopy in the yard. There were three 4x6 tables for WFB, and later on we played some Betrayal At the House on the Hill.

I got one game of WFB in, with my Marienburgers facing off against a saurus based Lizardmen army with a single Engine of the Gods. I was hosed in the "beginning of the turn" phase of my first turn, when two Comets of Cassandora went off, killing both of my mages, one archer detachment and one cannon plus crew. So that put me somewhere around 500 points down before I moved my first figure. It went downhill from there.

"Betrayal" on the other hand was a blast. It's been a very long time since I've played any boardgames, but I think my interest has been renewed. Sadly, this particular one is no longer available. So I will be looking for something similar, to maybe have an occassional Game Night at my place. (An idea I've been talking about for months, anyway.)





23 July 2009

Historicon 09, Part 2

Historicon 09, Part 2: Painting

Although I've been going to Historicon (and Cold Wars and the occasional Fall In) on and off for a long time, I've only recently started participating in the painting events in the past few years. I think they are really unappreciated events on several levels. One, they are a lot of fun. Two, they are helpful in promoting & improving the visual aspect of the hobby. Three, the people running them seem to put a whole lot of work into them. Four, the events seem to be marginalized to less-traveled locations at the Host (I've had people tell me they didn't even know there were painting events going on.)

At any rate, I participated in three events this time: the bring-in painting contest, one of the 1-hour speed painting events, and the Iron Paintbrush.



Bring-In Contest

For the bring-in contest, I entered my Gallic standard bearer (almost-finished pics posted last week) in the single figure catagory (25mm scale, "master" level), and a unit of 40k terminators in the unit catagory, at the same scale and skill level. I felt a little guilty about the latter, as I'd like to enter historical figures since it's a historical convention. But they were something I had painted fairly well that I hadn't already entered in the contest before.

I ended up winning a silver for each. I'm not sure what I was up against since most of the entries were picked up when I got there. But the competition has been sparse. Hopefully more people will start entering... I will do my best to encourage people.

The figures I entered were things I had already painted for games. Next time I'd like to try taking my time & paining something specifically for a painting competition. We'll see if I get the time. :D

As far as other entries go, two of the few figures still there when I picked mine up caught my eye. The first was this guy (not my model!):



Appears to be a Mr. Potato Head 40k Ork Stompa, and truthfully looks better than the plastic kit GW just released. I love the cobbled-together details, and especially the precarious balance of the figure. Well done! I hope it won something.

The other figures (pics didn't come out) were the "Best of Show" winners, a group of 15mm WWII figures. Not normally my period or scale. But these things were painted better than many larger scale figures I see, right down to little details like insignia, and even details in the terain including a beautiful map on a fallen log. The map couldn't have been any larger than 1/4" square, if even that. "Best of Show" was well deserved.



1 Hour Speed Painting

I had some free time Friday night, and thought this would be a fun way to wind down the evening. I prodded my two Iron Paintbrush team mates and our "consigliere" into coming along. We were all given an identical figure and an hour to complete them. One difficulty is that I have become very familiar with all of my paints at home. But at the paint tent, I had to search around for colors. But that's a good thing... get out of the comfort zone and all that.

So the three of us spent the next hour painting, nudging each others elbows and taunting each other. In the end, we turned out three pretty good looking figures. In fact, there were a number of really nice paintjobs.

Here's my figure:





Iron Paintbrush



This event was one of the highlights of last year's Historicon, for me. I had a load of fun and our team won the Silver. This year one of our team couldn't make it as he has recently become a father. Fortunately, we know quite a few talented painters.

This year things were a little less enthusiastic, and the event actually got disrupted. The reason, apparently, was due to the showing of the "Sharpe" film, which someone evidently decided should be shown in the painting tent. We actually had our table picked up and moved by hotel staff in the middle of the event. The painting people seemed a bit down about the whole thing, and explained that this was also the reason we didn't have music this year (which helped set the mood last year!) since they took the power for the projector.

So to cut to the chase, we won the Bronze. A step down? Well, I guess so. However, take into account that I told everyone the wrong time, so we showed up a half hour late. Not only that, but I stopped in the hall to talk to Tony from Wargames Facotory while my team mates were getting our stuff together. We had a little more time this year, thank goodness. But that was largely blown by the fact that we screwed around for half the event. I don't think I laughed so hard all weekend -- at one point I just put my paintbrush and figure down because I couldn't paint with all the laughing. Top all that off with a theme/concept that, as one of my team mates explained, the judges didn't understand. I would have enjoyed the event having won nothing, so I'm more than happy with the Bronze.

One difference this year is two of us swapped figures back and forth, each painting different bits of the same figures. Last year we each painted our own. The third man did the terrain, as he did last year, and it even got some good comments from one of the judges.

At any rate, here's our entry, entitled, "New From the Discovery Channel, Jim, Bush Violator." The "theme" had to be "catch me if you can" and involve snow, tartan, and the color purple. So the concept is that Jim, the guy with the gun and wearing nothing but a (tartan) diaper and boots just got caught, uh... "writing his name in the snow" (you know what I'm talking about) next to the bushes outside the local, uh, naked necromancer elf's house and she has summoned up her undead minions to seek revenge.... Get it? :) Go ahead, click the photos to enlarge and read his name.





The pics were taken back at the hotel room, and I didn't correct color for the lighting. So cut us some slack. ;)




So anyway, fun stuff all around. Anyone attending Cold Wars or Historicon (I don't know about Fall In,) be sure to check out the painting events. Enter the contest! They've got it bracketed for different scales and skill levels. Also, be sure to check out their classes on painting, terrain, and sculpting.

21 July 2009

Mini exchange

It occurred to me that I may not have posted the figure I converted & painted for the secret miniature exchange at Warhammer-Empire.com.

So here it is. The recipient was an artillery guy in the army, so I chose an artillery crew/engineer. The minor conversions on the head, painting the goatee, etc. are all based on a pic of him I dug up on the forum. The uniform colors are based on pics of his army at W-E, and I tried to match his basing as best as possible, too.







20 July 2009

Historicon Eye Candy (elsewhere)

Just spotted a few other pages that have far better pics than I took. So I will just point anyone interested in pics in that direction rather than post my blurry snapshots...

I'm even in some of the pics. (So are my chaos terminators in the painting contest.) ;)

http://mysite.verizon.net/krista.smith/historicon2009.htm
http://news.vinceshomepage.com/NEWS/RP/WABplayers_2009HSa/index.htm
http://www.nycwargames.com/2009/07/metro-wargamers-hit-historicon-2009.html

Historicon 09, Part 1

This year's Historicon ranks among the most fun I've been to. I kept pretty busy the entire time, pushed a lot of figures, rolled a lot of dice, painted a few figures, and had a lot of laughs. Hell, I even "enjoyed" playing Magic back at the room, and I normally hate that game.

I'll probably be posting some specific stuff regarding a few events later in the week, like the WAB doubles and medievals tournament, the Clash of Iron demo, and the painting events.

This year I also came home with several times as much loot as I normally do. The best part is that almost all of it was at bargain prices. I just couldn't pass it up! Jus for humor's sake (and to give an idea what I'll be painting over the next year,) here's a list:

  • 28 Thureophoroi (Crusader)
  • 28 Carthaginian spearmen (Crusader)
  • Carthaginian command (mounted) (Crusader)
  • Numidian Elephant (Crusader)
  • 9 Spanish cavalry (Crusader)
  • 8 Balearic Slingers (Foundry)
  • 32 Numidians (Wargames Factory)
  • 28 Germans (Wargames Factory)
  • 3 German cavalry (Foundry)
  • 5 German standard bearers (Foundry)
  • German and Roman general (Wargames Factory metal)
  • Roman general (foot and moutned) (Crusader)
  • 2 organ guns, 2 light guns, and a bag of crew (Old Glory)
  • 30 Landsknecht pikemen (Old Glory)
  • 8 Landsknecht handgunners (Foundry)
  • 90mm scale Landsknecht Dopplesoldner (Andrea)
  • 16 oldschool Empire state troops (GW)
  • Empire general (Rutgar) (GW)
  • The follwing DoW (GW): Borgio, 3 galloper guns, 2 Bronzino, box of birdmen, 16 Pirazzo's lost legion, box of besiegers.
  • Great eagle (GW)
  • Boatloads (450+/-) 15mm medievals (Rank & File)
  • 2 FoG books (Immortal Fire & Storm of Arrows)
  • 2 WRG books (Dark Ages & Feudal)
  • Ancient Warfare special edition on the disaster at Teutoberg Wald
  • Misc stuff like paints, brushes, and so on.
I wasn't certain there was going to be room in the car for me on the trip home.

Sadly, with all the new stuff I got, I also lost my straw cowboy hat. I was quite fond of it. I brought it to keep the sun off my head, but I never wore it and left it at the hotel Sunday.

At any rate, I have plenty to keep me busy for quite some time, though I will be returning to some commission work for the next few weeks. I fell a bit behind trying to finish my stuff for the WAB tournament this past weekend. So now I owe some time to some other figures on my painting desk.

My photography skills left me, this time around. Not that I took many pics. But here's a few:


WAB Doubles:



WAB Medievals in front, WECW to the left, WAB Classical & Open in the distance:




Ancients area (is that the El Cid games in the foreground?):

14 July 2009

Tartan

Someone at Warseer asked about the tartan on the standard bearer in the previous entry.

Below is an animation of the steps I used. I made sure all the paints were well thinned out (just with water) so they would flow smoothly and not leave brush marks or start stacking up thickly.

I just "eyeballed" the pattern and tried to visualize the layout on the figure ahead of time, so I would know how to space out the first lines (in step 2.)



13 July 2009

Gallic Standard

One last shot. It's still not done yet. I had a few extra hours tonight so figured I'd try painting an army standard bearer that would stand out...


Gallic Cavalry

The last of the painting I need for Historicon. 10 Renegade Celts.


07 July 2009

Germs and Germans, Barbarians, Basing and Back Pain

German Barbarians

I need to have everything ready & packed for Historicon in a week. I started looking at some corners to cut. I broke down my doubles army into their exact units, since I finished some new magnetized movement trays last week.

I discovered that I could optimize it use some remaining painted Germans for almost 1/2 of the last warband I needed. So I concentrated on painting enough of the Wargames Factory figures that I had started to finish the unit. So the mix is WF, Foundry, and BTD, with one lonely Grenadier figure that I've always liked as the champion.



So that leaves me with just a unit of 10 cavalry to finish. My options are to finish the Renegade Celts I started -- they will take just a little longer to paint, and are the worst victims of the previously mentioned wookie-syndrome; or, I can assemble about 5 more Wargames Facory figures and paint a unit of them -- they are easier to paint, but I will have to spend the time assembling a few.


Germs and Back Pain

I've been sick since the weekend, I caught some sort of flu/cold going around. As a side effect of trying to sleep it off on Sunday and spending too much time in bed, I have been suffering from sciatica and unable to sleep or do much of anything else the past two days. However, on the "silver lining" end of that, one of the most comfortable spots for me to sit happens to be my painting table. Something about the stool, the way I rest my feet, my posture, etc. makes the pain disappear for a while. So last night at 3am when I couldn't sleep, I was painting sheilds (while trying to keep my eyes open.)


Basing

I think I have decided I need to change my basing. I spend too much time on it. I usually follow these steps:
  1. Glue on sand & rubble.
  2. Paint medium brown
  3. Drybrush light brown
  4. Light drybrush creme
  5. Paint rocks/rubble dark drey
  6. Highlight light grey
  7. Highlight white
  8. Apply patches of watered down glue
  9. Dip in foam flock, then dip in static grass
I'm not certain how to cut that down yet still get a similar look.

03 July 2009

Another warband finished. The light coming in the window messed with the colors a bit. As with others, I'll go back and detail the shields after basic colors are on the entire army -- or at least the first 2000 points of it. ;)