You'll find a little of everything here. Genres covered in this blog include (so far) prehistorics, fantasy, old west, swashbucklers, pulp, Blood Bowl, Ghostbusters, gladiators, nautical, science fiction and samurai in 6mm, 15mm, 28mm, 40mm, 42mm and 54mm sizes. You'll also find terrain, scenery, basing, gaming, modeling, tutorials, repaints, conversions, art and thoughts in general about the hobby.
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Here are, from left, a base of meat and organs (gloss varnished to make the meat look "fresher"), an idol on a stack of rocks surrounded by tribute (including a fire"lantern," meat, bone etc), and a selection of tools resting on an animal hide upon a rock.
Everything except the bases themselves was made from either Super Sculpey (which appears pink in the unpainted photos) or Super Sculpey Firm (which appears gray.)
Despite the batch being a little bit old, and somewhat flakey and dry, the Super Sculpey Firm is excellent for work in a tiny scale. The tools, as small as they are, were not difficult at all to create. They were a tad bit fiddly, but they took the details nicely. The lines inscribed in the meat and impressed into the tools was made by a needle.
The tools are really only inspired by actual tools; this collection was for practice. I have some reference material from which to recreate actual knives, scrapers and points in 28mm using the Sculpey. That'll all come later once my eyes become uncrossed!
Note: The figure is a Copplestone caveman (to give scale.) The bases of the meat and idol are 40mm, and the base with the tools is a 30mm display base.
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
I put the hut on a base, and primed the whole thing black (Testors matte black 1249). I chose three different shades of brown and painted each of the hide panels one of the shades. I also painted some of the furs gray to add variety. The tusks were painted an off white- don't worry too much about coverage; you don't want the tusks to be TOO bright.
A light shade of each brown and gray was roughly drybrushed on the appropriate areas. The tusks were given a lighter highlight of ivory, and the base was flocked. Time from painting to end of flocking: About an hour and a half. So, from start to finish, this prehistorc hut took three hours to make. Now my cavemen have a place to hide when smilodons are about.
A couple projects I've had in mind are now fully possible: One would be a burial scene (to serve as an objective marker?) involving a dead cro magnon wrapped in hides laid in a shallow bit lined with more hides, stones, bones and idols. I can remember seeing a lifesize diorama of a prehistoric burial scene at the Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., and I'd like to recreate this.
The other project I want to do is to take either a toy Mammoth with which to modify, or start entirely from scratch to make a dead/recently killed mammoth. Some of his skin would be peeled back revealing a rib cage and organs as if a tribe had just begun to harvest their kill. This second project is still a little ambitious, but by the time I get to it, i may have the skill enough to simply sculpt it entirely from scratch. Since it will be lying down, an armature would not be required; the construction would be very similar to the prehistoric hut shown here.
Monday, December 15, 2008
With all the amazing possibilities open to me with Sculpey, I chose a simple project as my first: A prehistoric hut.
After going through many different ideas for the base structure underneath the Sculpey bits, I decided upon crumpled-up aluminum foil; in fact, the Sculpey web site recommends crumpled foil as an underlying frame for larger Sculpey projects. This whole project used about a fifth of a pound of the Sculpey, which comes in 1-pound blocks.
After getting a basic size and shape with the foil, I rolled up bits of Sculpey into balls about the size of marbles. I then flattened the marbles of Sculpey and spread it over the foil structure (See first image.)
After the foil was covered, I took a needle and etched some buckskin panel lines. Some of the panels, I scribed in fur to add variety.
I made a few extra panels to layer over the hut to give it more depth and detail.
The hut, foil and all, was put in the oven to bake at 275 degrees (160 C) for a half hour.
In the meantime, I rolled up a few simple horns
and tusks which would be used to decorate the hut.
I have yet to glue the tusks to the hut, as well as to paint and base the piece. But the Sculpey bit is finished, and it only took about an hour and a half, including baking time!
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Super Sculpey is a polymer clay that, once you have finished your sculpture, can be baked in a regular oven to harden the clay. The result, in my opinion, is close to a resin finish. There are two Sculpeys out there, Sculpey and Super Sculpey. As far as I can tell, the Super is chip and shatter resistant. Keep in mind, resistant does not mean indestructible. The thicker pieces I made are strong, but the smaller pieces (such as thin bases) will snap if you apply enough pressure.
But, holy cow, the possibilities. Imagine working with green stuff, except your sculpt doesn't pick up your fingerprints, and doesn't dry until you bake it allowing to you to work and rework your sculpt at your convenience through the week.
It does have it's drawbacks: Since you have to bake it, that precludes you from using it to fill gaps or add parts to metal miniatures. Also, it's difficult if not impossible to sculpt hard edges while it's soft, BUT it can be polished, sanded and filed once it has hardened after baking, so hard edges are achieveable.
I say go buy a block. A 1-pound block will cost between $10-$14 (cost varying with region.) But places like Michael's and Hobby Lobby always have 40 percent off coupons.
If you try it and don't like it, give it to the kids and let them have fun, it's (advertised as) non-toxic (though the box says to be careful of the fumes when baking.)
Saturday, November 29, 2008
I was looking for a specific pose for a new D&D character: A sword-and-shield fighter hunkered down behind his shield but ready to strike. It was a pose I saw in an old Roman engraving of a gladiator hunkered behind his shield; he was lightly armored in every aspect except that facing his enemy. I finally settle on a miniature I already have - Well, I bought a copy instead of ruining a nicely painted mini.
The job was easy: I used a pair of needle nose pliers to bend the shield arm back a bit. I turned the word arm forward (This was helped in that the sword arm is separate from the forearm forward.) Then, to add a bit of difference from the old figure, I took off the horns from the helmet to make a rounded off skullcap. A little greenstuff was used to cover up holes and cuts and to make some leg armor (to give that totally armored aspect as seen by the enemy.)
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Friday, November 7, 2008
No babelfish here- I speak french, baby! ... I hope.
I've been noticing on my site stats that I've been receiving a lot of hits from French Web sites, so I'd like to welcome my French friends to my painting blog.
And French visitors are free to comment in French at my site. I'm not good at speaking or writing, but I can read French fairly well. I hope to hear from you all!
Sunday, November 2, 2008
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Colors are listed in order from darkest to lightest (which is the order I applied them, as per the "Foundry" system.)
Letter code: Rpr = Reaper Pro Paint, Fdy = Foundry
Padded jerkin: Rpr Night Sky, Rpr Slate, Rpr Slate+Rpr Ice blue
Jerkin trim: Rpr Ice blue+A touch of Fdy Arctic Grey 33A
Blouse (under the jerkin): Fdy Charcoal Black 34C+Rpr Ice blue, Continue adding Ice blue as you add highlight layers.
Tannery (the leathers): Rpr Aged Brick, Fdy Spearshaft 13A, Fdy Spearshaft 13A+ Fdy Base sand 10C, Continue adding Base sand for a couple more layers.
Shield: Spearshaft 13A, Spearshaft 13A+Rpr Rust, Add more Rust for a couple layers, Rpr Rust+Rpr Bright Orange, Add Bright orange for a couple layers, then add some Fdy Buff leather 7C to the Rust/Bright Orange mix. The white decor is Fdy Arctic grey 33A, B, and C straight up.
The hair also is Fdy Arctic grey 33A, B and C
The skin is Fdy Flesh 5A, B and C with intermediate mixes between each color.
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Friday, September 26, 2008
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
For the red color, the paints I used, in order from first to last, were Foundry Spearshaft 13B, Reaper Pro Paints Blood Red, Reaper Bright Red, Reaper Dragon Red and Reaper Bright Orange.
Foundry spearshaft is a light tan color. I prefer tans and light browns as a basecoat for bright reds as opposed to whites. Whites usually require a coat or two for full coverage, but most light browns have good coverage so that only one coat is needed, thus preventing a needless buildup of multiple basecoats.
The speed of painting the whole figure was accomodated by the use of a very small palette. Along with the red, I used browns for the tannery and gold for the metals (as well as a Foundry flesh palette fo the face.) The figure, by the way, is Reaper No. 2775: Edward Dumond.
Monday, September 22, 2008
Sunday, September 14, 2008
Friday, September 12, 2008
The key here, I think, in making a good flag for your army is to find the right material. It has to be a paper good enough to take paint and glue and still be supple enough to bend and furl into a nice wind-blown shape.
The material I use, and have plenty of, comes from the inserts Wargames Foundry usually sends out with their orders. I have also found, most thick, glossy papers will work. Really, just about any paper will work; If you paint the entire square/retangle of paper with acrylic paint, the paint will essentially provide the paper with a plastic layer giving your base material a layer of strength.
I prefer to measure and cut out a shape twice as long as the flag, so that I can fold it around a pole. In this case, I cut out flags at 2 inches by 4 inches (to make flags roughly 2-inches square). Don't forget to account for the part of the flag you'll wrap around the pole. For glue, I use superglue ( I like my stuff to get done fast), but white glue works just fine.
A note on flag wrinkles (see image): Flag folds/wrinkles/waves are the conjunction of where the wind is blowing the flag from one direction and gravity is pulling in another direction. But you need a point of tension from the which the wrinkle pulls, and that is the top of the flagpole where the corner of the flag holds.
However, wrinkles are not always required- you may add a very subtle wave or none at all if you want folks to admire your handywork. I want folks to see the patterns on my flags, so I've added only a minimal of waves into them.
The image is a photo of an actual-size reproduction Bedford Flag I made. The original flag was only 27 inches by 29 inches. The flags in my Empire army, however are about 6-foot square (inscale that is); I wanted them to have a decent impact on the game board.