Friday, 30 March 2012

Alien and Mercenary


The Eli's Alien of the day from 15mm.co.uk is a "Prang Soldier" which I thought looked more like a grizzled old ship's captain.. And it turns out from the comments section, so did Eli when he sculpted it!

The barrel of his gun was bent looking (possibly damaged in the mail) so I snipped it off and built a nice fat new front to it with pro-create. Learning from earlier mistakes, the end of the barrel was modeled on as a simple rounded blob, then I sliced off the front and drilled in a hole after it cured. Hard edges are a lot easier to cut than sculpt.

I wanted to show off his armor plates so did them in a ceramic white. I think I need to include a few more white bits in my sci-fi schemes and these turned out pretty nice.


This is an Armies Army figure that I did some more putty experimenting on. His head was replaced with a GZG one, but I didn't like the top of his headset, so I lopped that off too and sculpted a bandana.
I then used the wrong color for his armor plates by accident, but just decided to continue on.
He looks fine next to the others in the group as some kind of scout, or equally well as a solo mercenary or henchman.

Still unpainted fromt 10 man unit is the RPG launcher that I've converted into some kind of laser and a trooper with a backpack I sculpted on.

I think it's about time I started figuring out some kind of background story for my collection...

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Mega Shark


While waiting for some putty to cure, I FINALLY did the right side highlighting on this bad boy. He is a little bit shiny as he's not yet matt varnished. I really need to get a can of dullcote sometime soon. It is a Monsterpocalypse figure that I sculpted new claws for over a year ago.

Like the last one, the figure was very easy to paint, though a little laborious due to the size (He is on a 50mm round base). I'm looking forward to painting some "science team" and army vehicles to give the big guys some scale.. Although I feel I must start on the resin city pieces next so I can have my first game of Ganesha Games' Mighty Monsters.

Thanks for looking!

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Armies Army Leader and Alien Merc


While I had the putty out the other day, I thought I'd sculpt a pair of holsters on this guy so he had 2 pistols. I really like 2 pistols.
To further trick him out, I sliced the arm off an old GZG NI squad leader and pinned it on in place of the original arm. This amounts to probably the most extensive conversion I've done on a 15mm figure, which is quite satisfying and I heartily recommend it. (You can see some in-progress shots in the workbench photostream to the right).


Of course all this was done while prepping the batch of Aliens I got last week. Here is another one, A tall fellow with a pretty meaty looking rifle. Once again from the 15mm.co.uk SMH range sculpted by Eli. As usual, agonizing over a color scheme took longer than painting the mini.

I ordered two of these with the intention of using them as goon bodyguards for the Crime Boss. He's a little big for that though, so now he's some kind of mercenary with a big support weapon.
I'm not sure the photo shows off the length of his neck because of the angle.. But he's about the same height as the Bounty Hunter I posted yesterday.

I was about to start work on another when I noticed his left hand was a blob.. The sculpting on these minis is great, but I'm not having much luck with the castings so far. No matter, he's 1/2 way to having a cybernetic hand now, just have to sculpt the fingers on when the core of the hand cures. All this sculpting is making me think I should build some more tools. So far all I use is a clay shaper and a pin bashed into a flat paddle stuck in an old paintbrush handle. To take my putty mangling to the next level I need a pin in a handle, and some tubes for pressing in circle shapes.

Thanks for looking!

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Bounty Hunter and Adventurer


Another fine alien troublemaker from 15mm.co.uk and sculpted by Eli. My favorite "badass" looking monster in this set! The casting around the gun was pretty iffy, especially on top and to the front. To remedy this, I sculpted a big fat housing on top of the existing gun.
I painted his skin red to start with, but it just didn't feel right. This guy just had to be green. His left shoulder plate has some metallic chips on it to try to look a little like Boba Fett. I see these guys as being pretty dusty and banged up.


This is another Gang Task Force mini from Rebel. Almost every part of this model has been painted over with a different color to the original.. I just couldn't get this guy right.
I was finally happy with it as you see it here, but the puny and bent-looking gun bothered me... Pro-create to the rescue again! I added a slab-like chunk to the front and tried to sculpt in a channel along the top. It ended up looking more like a scope so I painted a red dot on the end.

The moral of today's story? If you don't like how a gun looks, don't be afraid to break out the putty.. At 15mm scale you can get great results with a little patience.

Thanks for looking!

Monday, 26 March 2012

Crime Boss and Exterminators


This lovely figure is from15mm.co.uk's SMH range, and was sculpted by the very talented Eli, of I see Lead people blog and Loud Ninja!

I ordered the whole set recently and chose this guy to paint first. The figures gave me an instant feeling of crime ridden alien  underworld types, so I did the over-boss of the undercity first.

He's short but very wide (yes, that's a 20mm base) and was a pleasure to paint.

Also done recently, some Khurasan Exterminators. I did 2 of these in a desert-ish scheme and was really unhappy with them, but a good ol' US olive drab scheme suited them much better and these got done relatively quickly. Doing a dark green fatigues with lighter green armor and gun wasn't the smartest thing I've ever done, but I think they came out OK.


Thanks for looking!

Sunday, 25 March 2012

New DIY Light tent/box


Using a lightbox diffuses the incoming light, which helps eliminate glare and bad shadowing.
I made a new lightbox recently as my old one was too small for group shots and big figures. I used my old terrain box, which is a folding cardboard box with a lid, and the perspex from my original lightbox.

First I unfolded the box and cut out top, right and left holes.

Next, I stuck in the semi-opaque perspex panels (tracing paper will do just as well)


folded back together, added some duct tape hinges to the lid...Alll done!
I am not getting enough light bounced off the inside of the lid, so I will add some crumpled tinfoil to try to fix this. Sadly, I'm fresh out at the moment.

If you are not happy with your mini photos, why not give something like this a try? It's a lot cheaper than a commercial light-ltent and does exactly the same job in 1/2 the space.

Saturday, 24 March 2012

More Armies Army figures


I have had these Armies Army figures half-done hanging around the desk for a while. They have a lot of dark grey on them, which is not difficult to paint, but is fairly laborious. Once underway though, the scheme is actually pretty easy to do, due to the 2 color palette.

Here's a shot of the 5 I have finished, which is only half a pack! I might do some head swappery on the remaining ones just for fun. Fiction wise, I'm thinking of these guys as op-force mercenaries, so a few with more varied appearance would be in keeping.


I used some Silfor 2mm tufts on the bases, and am very pleased with the results. They are simple to apply and less messy than shaking static grass everywhere. The late Autumn color is better suited to my sci-fi/post apoc figures too.

Thanks for looking!



Friday, 23 March 2012

Gun Kata!


Here are two figures from Rebel Minis, that are dead ringers for Gun clerics. The movie inspiration was a little dull.. Black haired man with black guns, black coat, black gloves etc. so I went with boltgun metal pistols with a badab black wash.
The man in black required a bit of putty work on his hair, as he had a deep mold line running across the top of his face and hairline. There are not many options around for 15mm heroes wielding 2 pistols, and as the gun posing is quite good on these minis so I'm thinking of cutting off the upper torsos of my spare ones (you get 2 of each pose in a pack) to stick to running or otherwise un-coat-wearing legs.

There are a few others in the pack, one of which I will be using as an evil female scientist. I may do at least one more in a white "science coat", possibly with the addition of some goggles.

Overall, a pretty handy pack of minis and not much work to get finished.

Thanks for looking!

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Mighty Monsters (Monpoc Repaint)


I painted this fellow a while ago when I finally got hold of the Mighty Monsters rules from Ganesha games. As I've said before, the Monsterpocalypse figures are fantastic IMO. This one is a simple repaint over the "ultra form" of Terra Khan. The Ultra forms are cast in transparent plastic and have little or no paint on them, so are easy to apply your own color to with ordinary miniatures paint.

Undercoated this guy with Citadel foundation Gretchin green and just went from there. A wash of thraka green then a lot of highlighting. Painting such big areas was a bit disconcerting as I'm so used to tiny detail.. Hence the face is probably the best painted part and the tail the worst. Highlighting the spine ridge was quite an arduous task.

What Stalled this project was waiting for my resin city buildings to arrive from Old Crow. They took about a month, but I would have to say they are worth the wait. Beautifully sculpted and perfectly cast... But by the time I got hold of them I had torn off on some other tangent.

The Mighty Monsters rules are brilliant. I haven't had a game yet (waiting for painted terrain) but JF over on Solo Nexus did and gave his impressions for solo play here. Spoiler alert: It's a thumbs-up.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

iBooks Author

Available free for Mac on the app store is "iBooks Author" which is an app that allows one to create books with multimedia capability to view on iPads. Since I am a big user of my iPad this immediately grabbed my interest as a gaming tool.

What if I made a rulebook that could include video demonstrations and interactive images? This would change the entire way rules are presented and read. Done right, this could be a really effective way to both  teach and utilise a set of wargame rules.

Even if I don't use it as a way to create an amazing rulebook, I think it will be a great way to make the ultimate QRS for an existing game.

Time will tell if my enthusiasm survives first contact ;)

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Imps

Aim lower!
I painted these a long time ago for Khurasan, but recently found them rattling around loose in my drawer. I based them onto 20mm slot bases and gave them another coat of paint.. Not much of a post, but in case you were wondering about ways to base them up, here's my take on it.

The Human in the shot is a zombie survivor from The Scene. I have a couple more investigators on the go, should have pics tomorrow.

Thanks for looking!

Bounty Hunters


These guys are from Khurasan's recently released alien bounty hunters pack. The guy on the left made me think of a diving suit so I painted him in those colors. The Guy on the right is some kind of mantis-man, so I decided to show off his carapace as much as possible. He's actually done in the same citadel rotting flesh/Thraka green wash technique as the Deep ones.


Next up, the guy on the left is from the same pack. HIs color scheme was inspired by my old "Snaggletooth" star wars action figure from the original toy release in the 70's-80's. (C'mon, it beats another green figure!)

The guy on the right is a GZG New Israeli figure with a GZG bare head swap and puttied-up shoulders. He's been lying around unpainted for almost 2 years and something compelled me to slap on a coat of paint. The red suit was somewhat inspired by Jubal Early from Firefly, but I'm already calling him "Malone" who was a reocurring ex-drill sergeant from our old cyberpunk/shadowrun RPGs back in the day... AKASgt. Malone, AKA "Kidney punch" Malone.

I'm on an individual figure kick at the moment, so I'm going to tackle my spare ACP Mercs in individual bounty hunter livery very soon.

Friday, 16 March 2012

Shoggoth!

"Blrelbbebgegegghh!"

Here is the Em-4 miniatures "Dunwich Detectives" 25mm scale Proto-shoggoth mini, rescaled to 15mm by doing absolutely nothing.
I painted him with my recent layered ink washes over light color method. The figure was a great candidate for washes as it's got tons of wrinkly detail. I think my color choices were a bit iffy, but it's hard to predict how the washes will look when dry.
Using the ink and washes is a bit unpredictable but is great for detailed surfaces. I will probably use it to an extent on my Khurasan mutants, but I'm doing some Armies Army figures at the moment using my more standard way of painting and it's good to be back. I still use a lot of devlan mud and badab black to get into crevices, but careful highlighting is still my weapon of choice.
The base was made by slicing some cuts into the putty I used to disguise the lip of the integral base, then putting sand on top as usual. I used Resin sand gel for the second pose, which you can see in the Workbench Photostream.

This mini looks suitably Cthuluesque enough for me now though and it's nice to be getting some different styled figures painted.
Finally, here he is with the two investigators I posted earlier in the week for scale.. What a beast!

"Shoot it in the knees"


Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Blog Changes

my secret
As you may have noticed, I've been really changing up how the blog looks lately. It's settled down now, so don't worry. We bid a fond farewell to the old header image.. It is now over 2 years old (!) so I thought my more recent efforts would be better to show off.

The coolest thing about this is that I have decided to run a feed to my Instagram account in the sidebar.
I am using the account solely for hobby related photos and feeding it into the blog means you readers don't have to faff around with making your own account. The ever rockin' Mik of Mik's minis gave me the idea a while ago but I have only just now got it going. Automagickajigally posting photos from my phone is a lot easier than making up a post, so hopefully there will be little fragments of what I'm up to in a nerd sense every day. Maybe I should have called it my Nerdstream. Anyway, hope you enjoy!

To celebrate, here's a photo of my camera. It's a Canon powershot s95 and it's awesome. So awesome even I can use it (It's always set to Auto) an my girlfriend keep stealing it... So I'll probably have to get a new one.

In closing: Dynamic view sucks, a good spring clean is therapeutic once in a while and chicks love cameras.

Eldritch Investigators

Investigation by fire is just as good as recon by fire

My girlfriend has hijacked my camera so I'm reduced to using my phone to take pics tonight.

Here we have two Eldritch Investigators for my Cthulhu collection. They are actually Sheparton Gangsters from Khurasan, but hey, 1920's guys in hats with guns are 1920's guys in hats with guns eh?

The minis are great to paint and I look forward to picking off the rest. Although I think I'll avoid brown for the next batch.. Getting a bit samey.

In the same vein, I've almost finished a proto-shoggoth from Em-4 miniatures. They are 25mm scale but look suitable for monstrous scale beasts next to 15mm figures.. And at £1.75 you'd be mad not to. (Ho ho). I grabbed a couple with my last order of 200(!) 20mm plastic bases. I won't be able to get 'em in Australia so I figure I'd better stock up before I go.

(This is turning into a really good excuse to buy all the UK mini stuff I "need" so far too)

Monday, 12 March 2012

Throwdown Door: Scratch build


I'm up to my neck in the Throwdown rules development at the moment and now that the combat rules are in place (hooray!) the next step is scenarios. I'm planning to include some typical wargame scenarios people can use with their existing terrain collections, but new for Throwdown is my exciting new "Dynamic Mission System" which uses a handful of special pieces to create a random close-quarters mission "on the fly".

Although the D.M.S is focussed on a very small commitment from the player to getting into the action (a core concept in Throwdown) it does require the occasional door that can be open or closed... This is easily done with a counter or somesuch, but I thought I'd try my hand at building a working doorway from stuff I had lying around...

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Armies Army Rusk Trooper


Blogger destroyed my original post about this mini (my own fault for dabbling in the terrible dynamic view layout) and I can't remember what it said, so here's a photo of one of the new Armies Army minis!

I painted him in a simple 2 color scheme that took me ages to decide on. It's VMC Khaki, with black fatigues highlighted up with citadel adeptus battlegrey.

The eyepiece is made of pro-create, as I accidentally scraped off his original eye when cleaning the figure.. Oops!

Deep Ones


Khurasan announced a huge slew of new releases this week on TMP. Many of them are figures I have painted recently that are now out from under wraps.. Which pleases me greatly as it means I can talk about them and we can all buy them! (Of course I need some more...)

The Deep ones are perfect for Lovecraftian gaming, or just about any other genre where there's creatures out to get you. They are beautifully sculpted and very easy to paint.

I base coated them with Citadel Rotting flesh, washed them (qute carefully in two thin coats, drying in between) with Citadel Thraka Green, worked a little Ogryn flesh wash into the spines and fins, then highlighted a bit with rotting flesh again. I gave them a final ultra-thin glaze of watered down Vallejo green ink last of all.



Thanks for looking!

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Mutant Boss


This guy is from Khurasan's Post-Apoc range and is available now! There are also some fantastic power-armored "government troops" that I didn't know about and must have!

The paint job is noteworthy because I tried using a mostly ink/wash method to paint it. All blocks of color were done in light tones. Various citadel washes and Vallejo ink glazes were applied (I thin out the ink a lot with water for a glaze) and only very minor final highlights were done at the end.

For a dirty wasteland warboss, I think it came out pretty well. I'm a fan of washes because I don't find it easy doing accurate highlights on very fine detail and even on my more traditionally painted figures, a wash will usually feature somewhere to shade what I can't reach with my brush.

Thanks for looking!

Monday, 5 March 2012

Rebel Minis for Throwdown


I've been working hard playing and writing the rules for Throwdown a lot lately. I needed some figures that weren't "space riflemen" and picked up a pack of Gang Task Force from Rebel Minis, along with some skeleton pirates and Gun Clerics.

I really like the figures, the only letdown is that they obviously have the same legs. This isn't too big an issue though as they at least have sci-fi looking kneepads etc, so overall I'm very happy with the purchase.

I have painted them as a free trader crew in military tones. I have a 2 left, one half-done with an uninspiring jacket (Charadon granite does not highlight up well at this scale) and one in a cap at undercoat stage.

The bases are a little schizophrenic, being both brown and grey. It means they don't look wrong with any of my other figures, and I'm going to stick with this style for a bit.

Thanks for looking!

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Spacejacker tattoo


I don't normally blog about life stuff here, but I'm so pleased with my latest tattoo that I thought it deserved a mention.

The artist is the tremendously talented James Woodford from Into You Tattoo in Brighton, UK.

It measures about 6" high, took less than 3 hours yesterday and was no more or less painful than my others (I have a 3/4 sleeve on both arms). It is the first bit of realistically shaded ink I have- My right arm is 8-bit art and my left is traditional Japanese... And I love it!

It's only a day old but is healing really well. I'm used to having an arm wrapped in plastic while I try to work.