27 September 2012

Modelling & Painting Tutorials…

One of the benefits of the recent charity project was expanding my list of wargaming contacts and discovering gems within the community. One such gem is Byron at Element Games and his modelling and painting tutorials on the EG forum.

We've all seen online tutorials, or created a few ourselves, so when Byron suggested going to have a look at the ones at Element Games I popped online to have a quick look so I could say that I had. However, I have to hold my hands up and say I was genuinely blown away by what I found.

Byron is a genuine talent and the growing list of tutorials are genuinely useful – I have picked up a lot of tips for my own painting.

Not only does Byron cover miniature painting he's also got tutorials about painting scenery, in particular some of GW's plastic buildings. These have been finished to a stunning level, yet as the tutorial explains, it wasn't difficult at all and anyone can achieve similar results.

24 September 2012

40k Dark (Nurgle) Vengeance…

With all the Malifaux painting and the charity auction posts I needed something completely different to look at next.

I have to admit I've been turned off from 40k for what has to be the whole of 5th Edition. I tried to get back into it with my Blood Angel project back in 2010, but the enthusiasm quickly waned. With the release of a new edition or codex there is always renewed interest and this time I get double the trouble – new 6th ed starter box set soon to be followed by a Chaos codex.

I did intend to pick up my Iron Warriors and did a post to that effect last month. However, when I saw the fantastic Chosen models in the Dark Vengeance box they just didn't say Iron Warriors to me. They were too good to pass up so I had to pick a scheme. I have had a fledgling Forgeworld Nurgle army sitting in boxes since just before my Blood Angels appeared on the scene and now seemed an ideal time to give them another look. The Chaos Cultists look like a pack of Nurgle worshippers too so they would fit right in, as would the Hellbrute!

There was one of the Chosen models in particular that cried out to be Nurglized, so I decided to use him as my test piece.

The new plastics are fantastic and I had great fun sticking him together. I decided to go with my tried and trusted "plastic base with penny underneath" treatment to help weigh him down.

Once done I went at him with the greenstuff and "tweaked" his look to be more in keeping with a servant of the Great Puss Master. I didn't want to obscure the model too much as they are too nice to cover up, so it was more a nod in the Nurgle direction.

When it came to painting I went in with the traditional black undercoat.

I bought (all that time ago) a tube of Vallejo Model Color 'English Uniform' – an earthy yellow green colour – which seemed ideal and so this will form the basis for my Nurgle armour going forward. Combined with lashing of Devlan Mud and some Knarloc Green gives a superb effect. For the metal I went with a basecoat of Bestial Brown with the metallic paint to be overbrushed later.

The rest of the Nurgle troops were mid-construction, with most of them stuck onto suitably rotting resin bases. I wanted to go with my weighted penny option for these too so spent some time hacking up the bases to remove the models (which had been stuck down very well!). Bit of a shame but I wanted the heavy bases that I have with my Bezerkers and the resin just wasn't going to work.

I picked out a couple of guys, gave their plastic bits the greenstuff treatment and then set to painting.

Will I manage a complete Nurgle force or will the enthusiasm wane again?
Will I get sucked back into 40k with 6th Edition or will the bright lights of Malifaux and Warmahordes drag me away?

Stay tuned to find out more!

More Nurgle -->

19 September 2012

GW Design-Fu Strikes Again

So yesterday a lot of new photos appeared on the net. The new look White Dwarf was seen for the first time. As a graphic designer I have to say…finally, some nice design executed in GW printed matter (though I bet they still don't proofread it).

This whetted my appetite and, off the back of some superb models in the Dark Vengeance box set, I was really looking forward to the imminent Chaos codex and host of new models.

As the day wore on we got to see some more covert photos from inside the new White Dwarf showing off some of these new models.

The sound of my chaos bubble bursting could be heard for miles around!

I wrote an article a couple of years ago about the static or awkward nature of a lot of the poses with 40k models and two years later things are the same…

This guy wouldn't look out of place in Michael Jackson's Thriller video or on the BBC's Strictly Come Dancing! Ridiculous pose.

This guy was called a space badger on one site I visited yet, whilst I think it's a rip off of models like the Rackham Hybrid, it is the best of the new stuff I've seen so far.

His more static, gun-toting brother doesn't do much for me really but it's ok.

The biggest offender by far is the new Chaos flyer, the Helldrake. Now, I wasn't a great fan of the Hell Talon that Forgeworld did – it was a bit too Battlestar Galactica and not enough clunky 40k Chaos for me – however, it was a ton better than the latest addition…

This model is ludicrous. Someone obviously had too much Mountain Dew one Friday evening and had a Zoids/Transformers DVD marathon weekend. This just doesn't say Chaos to me at all. Dark Eldar maybe. It's not clinical enough to belong to the newly turned Chaos Marines and it's not mutated enough to belong to long-term Warp dwelling Chaos Marines. It'll also be a nightmare to transport. Why can't we have something a bit more straightforward with mutated bits on it?! Or a different design for each Chaos god!

The thing that kills me is that, compared to the Chaos models in the Dark Vengeance box, some of these are terrible (I'm looking at you Helldrake). Surely they were designed at roughly the same time but don't seem to have any of the same design principles applied to them.

That's my knee-jerk reaction to them (and it is a knee-jerk reaction to be sure). They are covert photos and the paint jobs may not be helping so I'm going to sit tight for White Dwarf before exploding completely.

At least it means I will get to do a lot of converting and scratchbuilding alternatives if my opinion doesn't change… and that means more funky blog posts for you lovely people!

To be continued.

+++++ UPDATE +++++

All Hail Natfka!

Go over to his site now for a stack more photos and see if they sway your opinions.

(Loving the new Raptors!)

17 September 2012

The Morning After…

++++ UPDATED ++++

So the Tale of 3 Painters charity auction finally finished on Saturday evening and I find myself with something of a morning after the morning after feeling.

The self-imposed pressure of painting something to be sold for charity that became so high profile left me burned out once the models were complete. The marketing push kept going and the momentum and exposure had to be maintained until it was all over and the auction ended. Luckily the burn-out didn't last too long and I got back into painting more 'comfortable' things. Yet I didn't feel I could post anything other than charity related news – I didn't want to undermine the momentum of the project. So there is some relief to be gained now that things are settling back to normal. I can post about various stuff again.

Anyway, back to the auction.

I have to admit that I was frustrated when the bidding stopped at £260 midweek last week – In my role as organiser and project perfectionist I wanted to raise as much money as possible. I comforted myself that Ebay etiquette would kick in and there would be a late flurry at auction's end. When I logged on Sunday morning to discover that the total had not moved on I was disappointed. The retail price of the bits we had on offer came to £250, which meant our painting time and effort had resulted in almost no value (I'm being deliberately simplistic in my thinking here) – somebody was getting a real bargain here for sure!

This project has been a rollercoaster from day one and I should have known that fate would not let it end like a damp squib. In a final act suitable for a Hollywood movie the twist at the end lifted my spirits and ensured the happy ending…

It turns out that the mysterious winning bidder was none other than Brian from A Gentleman's Ones blog. B and I started our blogs at the same time back in 2010 and have been great supporters of each others projects ever since. This was highlighted with our Hailed vs Hated collaboration that included the first transatlantic game of email 40k. Had this recent charity project been entitled A Tale of 4 Painters, Brian would undoubtedly have been the additional artist so it was strangely fitting that he should end up winning the auction.

I can walk away from this project feeling happy that the models are going to a good home, that we managed to raise some money for charity and that I made a few new friends and managed to finally meet some 'old' ones. A lot of individuals stepped up to help throughout the course of this project and I will be eternally grateful for their efforts to make this a success.

+++++ UPDATE +++++

Brian has just been in touch and DOUBLED his winning bid!

I'm absolutely stunned by his generosity – I am genuinely overwhelmed – and I'd like to sincerely thank him on behalf of everyone involved in the project for his contribution. It means we have a final total of £520 which is fantastic! Thank you so much.

(I'm struggling to put words in a coherent order, so I'll leave it there.)


I will be doing a post-project thoughts blog post and video in a couple of weeks time but for now normal service will resume.

14 September 2012

Malifaux Charity Auction Ends Tomorrow…

With less than 36 hours to go before the Tale of 3 Painters Malifaux charity auction ends I thought I would do one last shout out.

It's been quite a journey and it would be great to see a final winning bid that reflected all the time and effort of the people involved – it is all for charity after all!

My thanks go out to my fellow painters Andy Walker and Michael Awdry, as well as Joey Berry and the Malifools podcast crew. I'd also like to thank anyone out there in the community who blogged, tweeted, podcasted or emailed about the project – your help is appreciated.

I'd also like to thank our supporters who have been very generous with their donations. I'll do a quick recap of the final contents of the auction –

Of course you have the 30ss Hoffman crew comprising of C. Hoffman, Mechanical Attendant, Ryle, The Guardian, The Hunter and The Watcher, all painted to a great standard – believe me, the photos do not do them justice!

You have the character cards in Toploader Ultra Pro card protectors and some plastic 'soulstones'.

Firestorm Games kindly donated a Malifaux Fate Deck and a Rules Manual which the painters all signed, as did Joey Berry.

There are TWO full sets of resin bases – 'Rubble City' (pictured) and Cobblestone – in 30, 40 and 50mm sizes kindly donated by Fenris Games.

SnM Stuff have kindly donated a set of Vallejo Foundation Paints and 5 Kolinsky Sable brushes.

Element Games kindly donated an Army Painter Model Tools Set.

KR Multicase kindly sent us TWO carry cases – the Half Width Aluminium (pictured) and the Aquilla 4 – and also an Accessories Case with Tape Measure and Dice.

And finally, Wyrd Games have promised us (to arrive at a later date) some of their new plastic miniatures – The Rail Crew box set (pictured), The Rail Golem and the limited edition Miss Terious.

To see more photos have a look at the original contents post.

Normal service will finally resume next week, with the exception of a post-auction summary with behind-the-scenes video.

Then I'm away to San Francisco for a couple of weeks, but fear not – there are scheduled posts already waiting to entertain you!

13 September 2012

Malifools Interview…

Continuing my marketing push for the Tale of 3 Painters Malifaux charity auction, I was kindly asked to go on the Malifools podcast to have a chat about myself, the project and final auction.

In order to get the podcast out in plenty of time before the auction finished, the interview became the podcast's first 'maliblip' mini-cast. Mind you, I still managed to chat to poor old Jon for 40+ minutes.

So, if you're not fed up of hearing about the project, want to find out what a terrible gaming opponent I am, or how I got started doing this thing of ours have a listen at the link below…

Malifools Broadcasting Network: Maliblip One – When Jon met Dark Templar

10 September 2012

Wyrd Donate New Plastics…

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

Just had an email from Nathan at Wyrd to confirm their donation for our charity auction.

They are sending us the new Rail Crew box set featuring new master Mei Feng, the Rail Golem (which is the largest Malifaux model by some way) and the limited edition Miss Terious, a female Death Marshall!

My thanks go out to Nathan and the Wyrd folks for their kind support!

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

08 September 2012

Charity Auction – New Goodies

The Malifaux charity auction is going very well so far with a week still to go.

Buoyed by the wargaming community's enthusiasm for the project, Fenris Games have decided to add more resin bases to the auction pot!

Yesterday I received a set of their "Rubble City" bases in 30mm, 40mm and 50mm sizes. I have to say (trying to stay as unbiased as possible) these are absolutely superb and I will have to get some myself – seriously. To see them in their painted glory have a look on their Ebay store.

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

05 September 2012

Charity Auction Contents & Details…

It's auction time at last!

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

Over the last month you've seen the painting progress of the Hoffman crew than myself and my fellow painters Andy Walker and Michael Awdry posted. I've given updates as supporters have come on board and donated to our final auction and now you get to see what's up for grabs.

First and foremost, if you win the auction, you will get the above C. Hoffman led crew for Malifaux consisting of his starter box plus The Mechanical Attendant and Ryle. That's six models in total, making up a nice 30ss list. The models are set upon resin Cobblestone bases by Fenris Games and are painted to a very high standard. You even get a free penny in the base of The Watcher, used to weigh him down – bonus!

I have also put the crew character cards in Ultra Pro Toploader card protectors and included some plastic gems to use as Soulstones when you play.

Firestorm Games have donated a red Malifaux Fate Deck and a Malifaux Rules Manual which myself and fellow painters have signed, as has Joey Berry!

You now have everything you need to play Malifaux!

Fenris Games have donated a stack of additional Cobblestone resin bases – 30mm, 40mm and 50mm – for when you want to expand the crew, to ensure they all match up.

SnM Stuff have donated a set of Vallejo Game Colour Foundation paints and a set of five Kolinsky Sable brushes with sizes ranging from 0 to 5/0. I used both Vallejo paints and Kolinsky brushes painting the Mechanical Attendant and I have to say I love them. I haven't used these foundation paints but I'm tempted to pick some up myself!

Element Games have donated an Army Painter Model Tools Set, consisting of clippers, pin vice drill, scalpel, file, tweezers and superglue. I'm well impressed with this set!

KR Multicase have donated a Half Width Aluminium transport case in which the models currently reside and in which they will make the trip to their new home. The crew toured Plymouth in this case and it was easy to carry and I was at ease about them being well protected.

They also donated an Aquilla 4 transport case, which will be ideal for additional models. It contains the same foam trays as the Aluminium case and has a shoulder strap for easy carrying.

In addition to that, KR Multicase donated an Accessory Case with a tape measure and dice – not that Malifaux uses dice but they'll make good wound markers! The crew cards currently reside in this case and I noticed that the Rules Manual fits in there perfectly too!

Wyrd Miniatures, who are responsible for Malifaux, have promised us a Rail Crew box set featuring new master Mei Feng. They are also sending The Rail Golem, which is the largest Malifaux model by some way, and the limited edition Miss Terious. These items will be forwarded on to the lucky winner as soon as they arrive, at no extra cost.

New Goodies!!

Fenris Games have sent us some more bases… 


So there it is – quite a haul I think you'll agree. The retail price of this little lot comes in at well over £200 and you get everything you need if you're looking to start playing Malifaux or simply to expand your collection. That doesn't even take into account the superb paint job on the models themselves.

To get things started the auction will have an opening price of just 99p!

To have a chance of getting hold of this lovely loot go over to the Ebay page and place a bid.
Remember it's all for Cancer Research UK, so it's going to a good cause.