30 July 2012

A Tale of 3 Painters… Models Built!

(back l-r) Hunter, Guardian, Watcher.
(front l-r) Ryle, Hoffman, Mechanical Attendant.

With 1st August fast approaching the pressure was on this weekend to get the six (yes…six) models built in time to be posted to my fellow painters on Monday morning.

For the most part I have used cobblestone resin bases by Fenris Games that I had – you may have seen them in my early Malifaux painting pics, my Lady J's crew uses the same ones.

Whilst on the subject of Fenris Games, I was lucky enough to get an email from Ian at Fenris on Friday to say that they are going to donate some bits to our auction, so a big thank you to them.

I built the bigger models first, starting with the Guardian – an easy build but most limbs needed pinning. I got terribly excited and gave him an undercoat whilst waiting for other models to dry – jumping the gun a bit!

The Hunter was similarly straightforward but felt the need to pin a lot, including the replacement of the harpoon shaft that was bent beyond a joke. This model is on a huge base but manages to look right on it.

Ryle was a very easy build but I pinned his arms to be sure. Things were going well at this point – I should have known better.

The Hoffman body was attached to his base with little effort involved, however his harness is very fragile. Whilst drilling pinning holes in said harness the limbs were bending all over the place and I was petrified on something breaking off – the metal is very thin in places. Luckily it all stayed in one piece. I've kept the harness separate at this time so that the model can be painted more easily then stuck together once complete.

The Watcher was a two-piece model (body and wings) but given his nature to fly I wanted to give his a little more height. I hacked off the top of some Warhammer ruins which fitted perfectly on a 30mm base. I used a plastic base (rather than a resin one) to aid the sticking process – I could use plastic glue instead of superglue – and I wanted the capacity in the base to add a penny to help weigh the model down. I pinned the two parts of the model together then attached him to the top of the plastic ruin.

With just the Mechanical Attendant left I was in the home straight. Then disaster. Whilst sitting in his blister pack, the mechanical arms of the Attendant had become quite bent, to the point of facing the wrong way. As I slowly twisted them back into shape the two arms above his head snapped off!

The metal is so thin at these points I have no idea how to attach them in a way that will not make them vulnerable in the future – will have to ponder that one a little longer.

The models were posted out this morning – off we go!

What's A Tale of 3 Painters all about?

26 July 2012

A Tale of 3 Painters… For Charity!

++ Go to ebay and see the auction here ++ 

There are a lot of talented painters out there in the blogsphere and I wanted to do a project involving some of the folks I've traded advice and compliments with over the months/years… so A Tale of 3 Painters was born.

The premise is simple – three bloggers paint up some models in their own unique styles and we track the collective progress and the end results.

However, things took a bit of a twist and so, rather than comparing different ways to paint the same model, we're going to paint up a handful of models then auction them off for charity.

So who's involved and which figures to paint?


The first of our intrepid painters is Andy Walker from The Lair of the Breviks
"I started the hobby over 20 years ago playing (and painting) Advanced Heroquest, and worked my way through the Games Workshop range culminating in WH40K. I've always been more of a painter than a player though, and in 2009 a small squad of Nurgle Space Marines made it through to the final round of judging at Golden Demon. In the last year I've been a regular contributor of painting articles to the Ancible magazine, and now I paint anything and everything I can get my hands on, including Malifaux, Infinity, Freebooter's Fate, Reaper and classic Citadel Miniatures. If it's a miniature and needs paint, I'll give it a go..."

Our next maestro of miniature painting is Michael Awdry from 28mm Victorian Warfare
"A love of history, a penchant for old war films and a refusal to grow up; all conspiring factors that find me painting small ‘toy’ soldiers as a hobby. I started painting historical miniatures a couple of years ago, with the blog 28mm Victorian Warfare following shortly afterwards. The whole affair was conceived as a form of cathartic expression; a much needed balance to an increasingly demanding career, but I am proud to confess is now a fully-fledged obsession. Yet to roll a die in anger, I find myself constantly distracted by a myriad of ideas that this most wholesome of hobbies provides; perhaps one day I’ll actually finish one of them!"

…with nephew
Finally, we have yours truly…
Mike "Dark Templar" Reynolds
"I've been painting models for 20 years, only recently painting for the love of it rather than for gaming purposes. I have painted models for WH Fantasy, WH40k, Warmachine, Hordes, Malifaux, Necromunda, Flames of War, Confrontation and Hybrid – yet to touch anything historical. As has been highlighted on the blog elsewhere, I'm quite a slow painter and something of a perfectionist which means I have a constant backlog residing on my paint tray!"


After Christmas I found myself with a surplus Malifaux box set (yes, I'm the person who orders stuff right before the Christmas holidays!) so it has been decided that this will be the topic for the project. The contents will be divided between the three painters and we will each go away and paint our models and you can follow the progress on our respective blogs – see above for links. You never know, other miniatures may join the party along the way.

However, before the painting starts I have to build the models!


THE JoeyBerry
Once complete the models will be reunited once again for a special event. At the beginning of September we are going down to Plymouth in Devon to use the painted models in a game against The Joey Berry which she will video for her Monday Malifaux spot on YouTube.


Then, finally, the completed crew will go up on Ebay for you all to bid on. The proceeds from the sale of the painted crew will be going to Cancer Research UK so we're hoping for a decent turn out and winning bid.


Can I ask anyone with a blog of their own or Twitter account to shout about this project and link to this page. We'd like to raise as much as we can from the project and your help would be appreciated – plus hopefully you'll have a few weeks of entertainment to boot.

You can of course support us by donating directly to Cancer Research UK if you don't want to bid – donation page can be found here. I have added a donation button on the blog for the duration of the project, all contributions going to the charity.


Thank you for reading this – hope you enjoy watching our progress, any and all support is appreciated. Stay tuned for the first update…


As much as we are enjoying this project, it is for charity. If you enjoy reading about our progress please donate towards our final total – even if it's only £1 – via the donate button at the top of the page or on the Cancer Research UK website directly.

Follow Andy's progress here
Follow Michael's progress here
Follow Mike's progress here

Thanks again for your support!


24 July 2012

Coming Soon… Top Secret

The last 7 days have been rather busy here (I seem to be saying that a lot recently) with my dad, sister and young nephew staying with us. No painting progress made during that time, but lots of thinking done. The summer also seems to have decided to make an appearance ('till the weekend at least) so less and less incentive to stay indoors and paint.

However, there is a secret project fast approaching that will mean I have to stay indoors during August to ensure it is complete by 1st September. The topic will interest some of you more than others BUT it's for charity so I want everyone to follow the progress and contribute in any way you can.

I'm hoping to get an official announcement out by the end of the week so keep your eyes open for that.

18 July 2012

Escalating Warcasters

The original, Primal Lylyth

With the recent release of Warmachine: Colossals and the expected spring release of Hordes: Gargantuans, gaming in the Iron Kingdoms is definitely getting bigger.

pLylyth alternative sculpt

One of my favourite things about Warmachine/Hordes is the Warcaster/Warlock dynamic. They really are the leader of your army, pulling all the strings,  and the game is over if they die. In addition there are different versions of warcasters as their character develops in the background story. These alternative versions aren't necessarily more powerful, just different.
Epic Lylyth – a simply glorious sculpt

When it comes to my Legion of Everblight, I love Lylyth. She may not be the best Warlock for the faction in-game, but I love the character, the background and the models. Such is her draw that I own all three sculpts – original (primal) pLylyth, alt pLylyth and (epic) eLylyth.

With the recent info coming out of the Privateer Press Lock & Load convention I have the possibility of a new model to add to my collection. As part of the Gargantuans release it seems we are now getting Lylyth 3 who, instead of being on a standard 30mm base, will be on a 120mm base and considered a Battle Engine!

Lylyth3… soon to be a Battle Engine!

Yes, we will shortly have a version of Lylyth on a sleigh – ho, ho, ho! I like the idea for this (although I would have preferred a Raptor mounted version of Lylyth first I think) but the practicalities seem odd to me.

First of all in-game. As I mentioned, if your 'caster gets killed the game is over, but here we have a caster on a 120mm base rather than a 30mm base – not so easy to hide and, improved defences aside, does beg the question of how easy it will be to keep her alive.

There's also rumours of a Khador warcaster actually being a Colossal – at what point do we reach "too big" for commander models?… when they're physically the biggest model on the table?

Then there is the financial cost. The current Battle Engines retail for something in the region of £50-60 and the Colossals closer to £100. Would you pay that for a warcaster model that by definition will not be used in every game and, if her stats make her too vulnerable, hardly used at all?

Of course you could always look upon it as simply purchasing a lovely model to paint, but it's going to have to be pretty stunning to justify a price tag of £50+.

17 July 2012

Nephilim Bolt Thrower

This is a great model to paint. There is almost every type of surface texture you can think of – skin, bone, cloth, leather, wood and metal. I thought it was going to be a 'quick win' but it is a deceptively detailed model and it was these details that took all of Sunday to complete.

The skin was painted in a similar scheme to the rest of my Legion models. I started with the VMC Sky blue over the black undercoat. This had an initial highlight of a Sky Blue/White mix before being washed in GW Asurmen Blue, paying particular attention to the recesses in the muscles. Sky Blue was used on some of the more shallow recesses before building up highlights to pure white. The tricky bit was trying to blend the black spikes on the secondary upper limbs (on his back) into Sky Blue/White. The result was ok if not super smooth. Straps and bindings followed the scheme established with the Everblight Shepherd.

Whether or not this guy will see much game time is debatable. He has some fantastic combat abilities – his Bolt Thrower is awesome – but he is expensive points-wise for what he brings to the table and there are arguably better options available.

Now that the Bolt Thrower is complete I'm moving on to clear more space on my table, starting with… another Nephilim, this time a Soldier.

This time I'm trying a slightly different approach to the skin. I started with a VMC Sky Blue/GW Mordian Blue mix which I left in the deep shadows when painting the pure Sky Blue second coat. This was washed with the Asurmen Blue and I have started to apply very thin Sky Blue/White highlights building them up slowly.

Without the extensive detail of his Bolt Throwing brethren I'm hoping this Soldier will be the 'quick win' I'm looking for.

13 July 2012

Planning the Everblight Purchases

Absylonia with Typhon

I may have mentioned recently that I am enjoying my time painting Legion of Everblight the most at the moment. I can't explain why but they give the biggest buzz and I seem to get satisfactory results quite quickly.

I am even closer to finishing off the Nephilim Bolt Thrower than when the above pic was taken, which will leave me with 2x Shredders, a Nephilim Soldier and Absylonia still on the painting table. I also have my Angelius who is waiting for a little quality greenstuff time before seeing paint. Waiting in the wings I have Legionnaires, Striders and a Deathstalker – as well as a plastic heavy beast kit – but they can wait until I've had a few more games and moved beyond starter box status.

However, that's not to say that I don't have my eye on additional purchases for the army. The soon to be released Nightlurker is definitely on the radar. The model looks great, will be easy to paint now that I have my scheme worked out, and has some great rules.

With my birthday coming up in late September I have my heart set on the Legion's Battle Engine – The Throne of Everblight! That is a monstrous kit and, regardless of how it plays in-game, it looks like an absolute blast to build and paint. I'll need to sort out my airbrush situation and storage solutions but that would be worth it.

And as if that wasn't big enough, there is the upcoming Archangel Gargantuan!… please Santa?!

Rumoured to be being released before the Gargantuan rulebook (due in Spring 2013) this looks like it could be the ideal Christmas present for me. I've always wanted to paint a dragon, but the Forgeworld ones have never done it for me and the plastic Warhammer ones were too small. This fella is a true beast and would be a real challenge. However, where I would keep it I do not know!

As you can see, the kit is still being built so we'll have to wait before the final thing is revealed.

So that's where we are with Legion. Hope to have some new photos after the weekend, although hobby time will be scarce.

10 July 2012

Blogshare: Bull's Waaagghhh!

Bull's Waaagghhh!

My long-time gaming opponent Bull finally has a blog. It could have been about anything – he has too many models for too many gaming systems – but in the end it was always going to be about Orks!

He has started his blogging career showcasing elements of his rather big Ork army, some of it quite vintage, and he is an Ork at heart – win or lose, you know you've been in a fight and there is much randomness and comedy.

As a fledgling blog please support it, you may find something of interest too!

I was up at his place at the weekend and got a quick fly-by video of the Orks on parade – only a fraction of the entire army and constantly growing – so did a quick edit and you can find it on youtube.

09 July 2012

Legion of Everblight Update

Things have been quiet this weekend with hobby stuff – real life taking the front seat to full effect. However, last week did provide some very productive painting time and here is the result.

The Shepherd above has been on the painting table for quite some time now. A beautifully delicate model it was great to paint, although I did have to borrow a magnifier to paint – or rather see – her eyes.

This Nephilim Bolt Thrower is not complete by any means but his skin is coming along really well. He too has been fun to paint, if a little more work than the shepherd. With a Nephilim Soldier currently waiting for an undercoat it was important to get my procedure for painting skin sorted and I think we're pretty much there.

06 July 2012

Malifaux: Assessing my Guildies…

As I mentioned earlier in the week, my interest in Malifaux has been piqued and I've decided to have a look through my Guild models to see how things stand at present.

Lady J was my first love but only managed a couple of competitive (ie. not still learning the rules) games before being replaced by a younger, faster colleague. Just prior to putting Malifaux on the back burner I did give J another look, compiling a list that took advantage of her abilities more than I had done previously – though I didn't get to implement any of those ideas.

The rest of her natural crew – Judge, Scales and Death Marshals – are all painted bar a solitary DM. The model that came immediately after this box set (The Executioner) is also painted to a good standard but has never managed to deliver in-game. In contrast the Austringer delivered in every game and became notoriously painful for opponents – the model was never finished 100%.

These were always my beginner models and they need to be looked at again now that I have gained a lot more Malifaux gaming experience.

The second box set I bought was the younger, faster Perdita Ortega. She was a revelation when I started out – her speed and abilities allowed her to win many early games almost single-handed. Combined with her Nephilim Totem she was even better, and these two models became the foundation of many games. The addition of a painted Santiago Ortega made the lineup more reliable and added resilience. My semi-painted Nino added a long range threat, but was never allowed to fulfil his potential often being taken down early on.

As for the rest of the Ortegas: Papa never saw the battlefield but saw some paint earlier this year; Francisco never delivered as an unpainted model so sat idle in the case until being recently resurrected for my Newbie Guide to Painting. He is still waiting to be finished. Abuela participated in a game or two but was always considered too expensive for what she achieved so still lies unpainted.

Although she became my go-to master for many weeks, my Sonnia Criid model was never painted. This is quite a travesty as she always did quite well. Samael Hopkins never saw paint either – another model with a lot of promised but very expensive and rather unreliable in-game.

The Witchlings on the other hand usually did quite well – although they too remain unfinished. The fact that I could summon more mid-game meant they became the mainstay of lists against Rasputina. On a couple of occasions I even managed to turn Rasputina into a Witchling which always gave me a sick sense of satisfaction. Even when used alongside other masters, they proved to be a solid choice of grunt – much moreso than the Death Marshals did for the same price.

Towards the end of my time fielding the Guild I went back to Perdita and added a Guardian (from the Hoffman set) into the mix. Although he was never painted beyond an undercoat he seemed to perform well.

I also purchased the Sonnia Avatar, and posted about its construction (as painful as it was). Alas she too never saw paint or play time before disappearing into the gaming case.

In addition to all the models listed so far for The Guild, I also have a host of models that didn't even leave their box/clamshell…

The remainder of the Hoffman box set sits unbuilt and unexplored. I like the idea of this master but he's not a priority at this time. In support of this I bought the Lucius box set (for Ryle) but again, the models sit undisturbed since arriving. There is also a couple of extra Guild Guard, Guild Hounds, Drill Sergeant and Mechanical Attendant not to mention a Peacekeeper still in his box. Even by my standards I'm rather embarrassed by the amount of unused metal here. They're all lovely models who need some TLC, but if my interest in Malifaux wanes they will be straight onto Ebay which would be a shame.

My problem now is that there are new Guild models being made available as Wyrd finishes off the Book 3 releases and moves onto Book 4. The Warden in particular looks like a very good investment but it'll have to wait until I can justify the addition – not likely any time soon given the length of my current wish list.

I think the solution is to scale back on things, like I have with 40k. Get a solid group of models together, that can crossover when necessary, and get them all painted to a decent standard. Let's see how that goes…!

05 July 2012

Surveying the Situation

Things are starting to get rather busy on the hobby front.

I have my ongoing mission to paint up Legion of Everblight and Cryx forces for Warmachine/Hordes. Then I have a revisit to 40k, starting with my Iron Warriors and then moving on to the Dark Templar. I'm also getting a hankering for Malifaux, which has been in the background for a few months now. On top of all that I have terrain projects that need attention. There's just not enough time in the day!

Due to the fact that I don't game much at all these days, no single project has taken the lead – when this does happen it's usually to the detriment of everything else. I am managing to keep a level of enthusiasm for all these gaming systems at the moment, but it's a delicate balance and the shiny things are everywhere trying to distract me. However, marshal law has been put into effect in the "DT" household and all hobby purchases outlawed until further notice, or until all credit cards and loans are cleared. Even the sale of my Blood Angels wasn't enough to lift the ban as SWMBO tries to "level the financial playing field". I do have a stockpile of shinies so it's not as if I'm going to run out of things to paint any time soon – there's just always something shinier out there.

The Legion of Everblight are probably the beneficiaries of the bulk of my hobby time. I'm really enjoying the painting right now and am plodding my way through the backlog of constructed models. Once I have cleared the paint tray I will have a nice collection to choose from when game time comes around. I do have two units, with unit attachments, still in the box – Striders and Legionnaires – as well as an unbuilt plastic heavy kit. However, these can wait until I've got a few more games under my belt. I will post some photos of the completed models in the next few days. I will also be posting a painting video very soon as I learn to use YouTube more.

Now that 6th Edition 40k has been released, together with some new flyers, Bull has gone back to his Orks. My 40k plan of action was well documented in the last post and I am slowly putting that into action. There will probably be some Iron Warrior time this weekend.

As for Malifaux, I've had my interest piqued thanks to TheJoeyBerry and her video diaries as well as the rumblings about the new Book 4 and Ten Thunders faction due for release in August. As much as I enjoyed getting to grips with Kirai, I'm a Guildie at heart and want to go back to my original faction and show it some love. Bull and I also have some Avatars we've not fielded yet.

On top of all that there is a SECRET PROJECT coming up later this month that I'm very excited about and I want everyone to get behind and support. More on that soon…

02 July 2012

40k: Back To Iron Warrior Basics

So the big launch of 6th Edition was this weekend and I purposefully stayed away from any town with a GW store in it. I made the decision last week that I wasn't going to buy the large rulebook, for a number of reasons. First of all, that's a lot of money for something that is going to have limited use. I have no interest in the modelling pages or indeed the fluff – there's not a lot they can tell me that I don't already know and I didn't fancy paying for it all again. If the background story has moved on then great, but my interest in 40k does not extend that far, so I'm going to pass on the expensive weighty tome.

I will however take a very close look at the starter box set when it finally arrives. We all love the cut down A5 rulebook, and it's far more suited to my needs. Then there's a host of plastic models that will find some use (or a new home via Ebay) so, unless they go silly with the price, that is where I will spend my money.

With that in mind, I have until September (assuming box will land then as per rumours) to sort out my Iron Warriors. As I mentioned in a previous post about them, my IW collection is a rag-tag accumulation of tournament veteran models and the odd Apocalyse support unit – it's not a balanced or practical army.

I'm going back to basics, re-painting my models where needed, to create a fully functioning and gorgeous-looking Chaos Space Marine army.

To start with I prepared an HQ and two full Troop choices, as per the Force Organisation Chart. I have to admit I pretty much used all the Bolter grunts I have, adding Missile Launchers, Plasma Guns and Champions. All that is left in my troop case is a handful of Lancannons and a couple more Plasmas.

You can see from the close-up photos that the paint jobs across the board don't stand up to close inspection – it was a basecoat and heavy ink job at the time and they're all looking a bit tired and war weary.

First job on the list is to add pennies to the bases to give them all weight – how can they be true Iron Warriors if they fall over in a stiff breeze!?!

Then I will go back and re-paint the armour and details with the additional painting experience gained since these models graced the painting tray. Once they are complete I will look at either adding transports for these units, or move on to Elite or Heavy Support additions.

It will be as if I'm starting a brand new 40k army, except with a boxful of models already in my back pocket. I will proceed in a balanced manner to try and make the army as competitive and characterful as possible, without resorting to tournament extremes.

Hopefully, as Bull puts his Orky house in order and the two armies cross paths we should see things develop. And once the new Chaos codex is released – rumoured August – the real work can begin.