Friday, 2 August 2019

Escher Gang

I haven't been working on my gang a lot lately, but I found a few photos of them that I hadn't posted. I made it to 7 finished gangers, so it really wouldn't take much to see them completely finished and ready to be fielded in all their painted glory.

Looking at them now really makes me want to work on them though - I think it's the old 90s Warhammer throwbacks like the red guns, hazard stripes and migraine bright hues! Did you spot the 2 original metal gangers in there?

I also did a piece of fiction to start the campaign:

He was now known as Bilge Master 4. It hadn’t always been that way, but an unfortunate encounter with a stray las blast had destroyed half of his cranium; melting away most of his sense with it. At that time several years in the past, he was called Korruk of Clan Goliath. His stricken body had been dragged to a doctor who had done their best to rebuild him with the only parts available. Unfortunately for poor Korruk, these parts had been hastily scavenged from the computer core of a sewage skiff and the programming was never fully wiped; leaving him with an identity crisis of sorts.

“Cleanse and sterilize!” As usual, the battle cant made little sense as the steely words left Korruk’s lips in a toneless boom.  He let fly with his stub-cannon into the darkness; lighting up the under-deck for a moment in the brilliant light of the muzzle flare. Somewhere in the distance there was a momentary sound of panic that soon grew still again.

Korruk had been patrolling the lower decks of the Brawndo production plant for several months after the Bennett Brothers had relegated him to a distant support duty. In truth, his delusions and obvious brain damage had made him a liability to the rest of his crew. For his part, it seemed that the newly self-coronated Bilge Master 4 was a lot happier wandering the tunnels aimlessly in a hallucinatory stupor.

Another noise issued forth from the darkness; it was closer this time. Bilge Master 4 cocked his weapon in readiness; just in time to see a huge rat bristle forth into the flickering halo of a wall mounted illuminator. The hideous beast skittered a few steps forward on misshapen legs. Its pudgy bulk reared up; sniffing the air as it moved. It seemed to realise that it was not alone, but it didn’t have enough time to put that knowledge into action; Korruk had already pulled the trigger. The dull, hollow bang of the weapon echoed through the maze-like structure as the rat’s body burst open in a wet puff of filthy viscera.

“Cleanse and sterilize.” Korruk repeated the words emotionlessly as he took a lumbering step towards the fresh kill. “Initiate docking protocol.” He reloaded the gun; a string of drool hanging from his mutilated lip.


“The plan is simple; that goon thinks he’s some kind of sewage processing plant. So all we have to do is flush.” The end of the sentence was punctuated by a wet popping noise as Tabby’s bubble gum burst. The Tabby Cats were in their den; the gang had managed to get some meagre digs in Bunk Town, but the room was packed to bursting as the Escher crew squeezed around a sector map that seemed to have been etched in crayon and splashes of hair dye.

“Care to explain that one boss?” The Juve received a quick slap to the back of her head for her audacity from one of the older gangers.

“We run around town flushing everything in sight right down on his head. He gets confused, and we slip by into Clan territory unnoticed … hurr hurr hurr.” Despite her slight stature, Tabby’s laugh was deep and goonish like a drunken Ogryn in heat. She had quite the complex about it too, and she shot a warning glare at the few who dared smirk at the simian sound she was making.

The dawn of battle would be trumpeted a few hours later by the sound of several dozen toilets ringing in unison.

Thursday, 1 August 2019

Oldhammer Project - Test Skink

It's back to the 90s today with the first bit of test painting from my diorama (As discussed a few months ago Here). I scrubbed off the old paint and to be honest I was surprised how good the model looked under all of that gumph.

For a project this nostalgic, not just any colours would do. He had to be really really bright and eye catching (so basically as saturated as possible). I also wanted to sort of update and recreate their original scheme which was basically goblin green skin and red frills. With that basic idea in mind, I busted out the airbrush and went to town.

Really old - and really bright!

I started off with a coat of Vallejo Emerald, which is a nice saturated colour that went on well over the black undercoat. After that came a highlight with Vallejo Foul Green, which I added white to and highlighted again. I did a pre-shade with white before blending the white in with Vallejo Fluorescent Yellow. The result was an almost migraine inducing green hue that can be seen several feet away even though the model is about 1cm tall! Pretty much exactly what I was aiming for. As I'm planning to put him in a diorama, the base is just temporary, and will be removed at some later date.

As this is an oldhammer project, I want to keep this bright with the other models. I'm going to use this scheme for the basic skinks, although I'm also planning some different skink schemes as well; particularly for the ones with different frills. It also feels a bit counter-culture; painting old models in really bright colours (when fashion is for Blanchitsu and grimdark) so I want to play with that and really push it to the max, so when the diorama is finished it'll be like a riot of fun and colour. Well, that's the plan anyway...

Wednesday, 31 July 2019

Tyranid Termagants - Gooey Organic Colour Scheme

For the Overmind!... oh wait, wrong franchise...

Just for a fun little side project, I painted up a few Termagants recently. I actually got them for free from my brother, so I can't complain, but they were a bit of a sorry band of rejects when I first clapped eyes on them. Especially two of them that I stripped; having had ugly old paint jobs given to them some years earlier by some unknown eBayer.

For the scheme, I wanted to get a decent amount of colour in there, and make it relatively fast to paint. I used the airbrush to lay down some flesh-tones and then worked over that. I also used a decent amount of both Blood for the Blood God and Gloss Varnish on them to get a nice sticky wet look, which I like on my alien bugs from beyond the stars.

Probably the most interesting thing was building their biomass looking bases. I like to think they're inside the bowels of a hive ship or something. As this was a cheap project, I wasn't going to buy anything fancy, so I sculpted the bases myself using milliput. The style does vary across the unit a bit as it took me a while to find my footing. Basically, after a bit of experimentation, I found that creating a wave like texture a bit like a ploughed field worked well, and then pushing the rounded end of a paintbrush into the divots to create ribs made quite a nice looking base.

This was just a little side project, so at the moment, I'm not planning a full army or anything. I would like to try the scheme out on a larger monster, but maybe a bit later, I guess we'll see.

Monday, 29 July 2019

Everchosen - I'm a Winner!

Just a quick update post to say that my Battle Sister made it through, and that I came first in my local competition! Next up, I'll be going on to represent the store in the online vote.

Just for fun, I also entered the open category, and snagged 2nd place with my 40k Skaven Dragoon conversion. All in all it was good fun, and I think I'll probably enjoy going into the online vote too. I'm not expecting much as I'm sure the serious golden demon guys are going to be out in force, but It's just nice to get a little bit of recognition, and it is a very big global stage, so it should be interesting.

I had a bit of a look around the internet, and I think quite a few people entered Sister Amalia into Everchosen, so I'm sure I'll be up against some very directly comparable models in the next round! (I've seen a few that made it through), so at least I can see how I do compared to them!

Winning was quite fun too, as I was presented with a mysterious golden envelope. Unfortunately, it just continued instructions on how to enter the second stage of the competition, and wasn't stuffed full of gift vouchers!

Saturday, 27 July 2019

Sister Amalia Novena - Everchosen Painting Competition

I'm entering the Everchosen painting competition today, so I thought I should post my work on the blog too. It's been a while since I last posted on here, but I have been working on some miniatures, so with any luck, more posts should be coming soon.

This was a cool model to work on. I wanted to do something for the competition, but was undecided about which model to use. I've always liked sisters of battle (and have an old army of the metal ones at home too), so I knew I was going to pick up the first ever plastic one when she came out. Given the timing, I figured that she would make a good entry for the competition too. I also often end up painting female models for competitions. I think it's because I spend so much time painting burly dudes that by the time I get to picking something "just for fun" I'm in the mood to switch it up a bit.

Build-wise, I made a few changes. I took away her bolter and added a sword from a Mechanicus infiltrator. Mostly to make her look more interesting for the competition, but it is a cool part and it wasn't that hard to do. Other than that, I added the archway. After painting, I added some "broken glass" to the arch too (seen at the bottom from the back). There are a few bits scattered on the floor too, but they aren't that obvious and don't really jump out in photos. Nevertheless, I think of it as a bit of an "Easter egg" for anyone who bothers to look at her long enough. The arch is the side struts from one of the citadel building kits, just cut to shape and re-joined at the top and bottom.

As far as paint is concerned, I went full NMM. I'm honestly not the best at non-metallic metals, but that's pretty much why I did it. I always try to push myself with competition entries, so it was an obvious choice. I laid down the base colours and blends on her armour and sword with the airbrush, but after that it was all good old-fashioned brush work. I also added some fairly subtle OSL in the form of the candle and lamp. I'm quite happy with the candle, but I feel like I could've brought the effect through to the actual model better. It doesn't really matter though as I'm happy enough with it as a bit of throw-away wow-factor.

That probably just about rounds it up. Everchosen is decided by public vote, so who knows how this thing could swing. I'm sure I'm  not in with a look-in for the grand prize as the really serious painters are sure to be out in force. A local victory would be cool, so I could at least make it to the online voting stage, but I guess we'll see.

Thursday, 18 April 2019

The Captain's Log Returns - Oldhammer Lizardmen Project Begins

When I first started this blog, I often had odd editorial's filed under the "Captain's Log" tag. As time has gone by, I've dropped a lot of the odd little articles that I used to do, some more due to a lack of time than anything else. Some I'll bring back with time (my terrible fiction will never die!), but it seemed a fitting title to use for this little snippet.

There have been a few years that I've considered entering one of GW's Golden Demon competitions, but I never really had a project in mind. I'm a good painter for sure, but I'm not really up to the standard of those people who spend their whole hobby in search of painting perfection and spend hundreds of hours on every model. The truth is that I don't have the stomach for it, and I've got  enough other things to be getting on with that I don't have that kind of time. With that in mind, my chances of winning anything are pretty low.

That said, it's one of those things that I'd enjoy doing, and would be a great place to test some techniques and work on some skills. I've often thought that it would make more sense to enter something that was more of a personal project - something I'd create to own and enjoy.

So, a few days ago, I got to thinking about my first army - 1990s Lizardmen. I've wanted to revisit them for a whole long time, and to have a go at stripping and re-painting some of the most characterful miniatures of the day. I know that most people probably have no recollection of what the sculpts even looked like back then, but a lot of the metal models were actually really nicely formed and had a lot of character. They'd also make a great palette for experimenting with bright tropical colours and jungle flora, which is something I've never done.

I also absolutely loved the diorama that was made for the Armies Book in 1997. As a kid, I spent what probably amounted to weeks of my life staring at pictures of that thing. It was just amazing at that time, and I recently had the chance to see it in person at Warhammer World too. I started thinking about the 40k Shadowsword that I painted, which was sort of a childhood dream since Epic came out, and I thought - why not really live the dream?

As most people don't remember the models of the time, here's a picture of that famous Diorama featuring them. 

Taking the basic idea, I thought that I'd have a go at making a prehistoric (get it, because they're so old) Lizardman diorama. Something like a jungle scene - a rocky temple backdrop for 2 sides of a base with a sort of central pond. Maybe a waterfall. My old Slann could be relaxing in a temple thing with a view of some type of fish hunting going on below. The idea would be relaxation, they've earned their retirement by now and deserve to enjoy it! I've got pretty much every model from the generation, so a Terradon sailing by somewhere in there, and a submerged Salamander would be easy enough. I'll probably add a bit of a sub plot in with some baddies sneaking up, but I'm still working on that part.

So, earlier today, I clambered through the darkest cupboard of doom. After being assailed on all sides by forgotten childhood memories, Goosebumps books and an old Nirvana cassette tape that nearly bludgeoned me to death; I finally reached my prize. A big box of ancient Lizardmen!

Upon opening the box, perhaps because of the bludgeoning, I became almost convinced that I was in an episode of American Pickers. Yep, I was junk drunk and surrounded by rusty gold. It had the patina, and the price was irresistible!

Oldhammer for the Oldhammer God! I won't be able to use everything, but I wanted plenty of options!

Anyway, I grabbed a bunch of the good stuff and prepped it for stripping. What happens next, who knows, who cares, but at the very least, I expect to enjoy painting a few very deserving models. With any luck plans will work out and I'll get a cool piece I can keep and display with all my favourite childhood models in it - and that'll be pretty priceless. I might even put in a few in-jokes (that Slann needs his Forbidden Rod and Amber Amulet combo for sure!). If it goes well, I'll enter it in Golden Demon just to put a smile on some faces that remember the good old days.

Original metal skinks! Collect the whole set. I know I did!
In some ways, these are the models that I owe a lifetime of fun to. They had hundreds of battles back in the day; probably thousands. I think it's time they retired with the full battle honours they deserve!

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

Shadowspear Obliterator - Emperor's Children

Whenever I buy a big box full of cool models, I have that concern that I'm just going to be adding to the inevitable cupboard of shame that every hobbyist seems to build up. So, with that in mind, I'm trying to make some steady progress on some of the new Chaos releases.

This is my first Obliterator from Shadowspear. They're cool models, that really look a bit like miniature Helbrutes really. I like the big and mutated look, and rules wise, they're sure to please. 

It's great that these guys got an update, and I'm sure at some point a new 3 man unit box will be released. The old designs might have been my least favourite models in the whole chaos range. Well, except perhaps for the mutilators... and with good reason!

As with most of my Emperor's Children, I'm following my standard scheme of purple and gold. It's pretty comfortable for me now, and as purple is my favourite colour, I don't really get bored of painting it. I have made a start on the second Obliterator as well, so hopefully I'll finish that off at some point in the not too distant future.

Despite my lofty goals about working through Shadowspear, I picked up a Lord Discordant at the weekend. I've mostly finished the build, but I'm working on quite a nice little conversion on it that I think people will like (well maybe depending on taste). I'm happy with the work so far, so I'm hoping to post up the build once its complete some time later this week.