Thursday, 21 April 2016

Salute 2016 - Painting Competition Entry

So last weekend I went to Salute in London. For those who don't know its the UK's biggest independent wargames convention.

A few determined blog readers might remember that I was preparing something for the painting competition, but with a huge bust and not much time it was looking like a tall order. The good news is that I finished in time for the completion, the bad news is that I didn't really have enough time to get everything as clean or perfect as I would've liked. I had even less time to paint as the conversion took so long. My plan was to basically bamboozle the judges with a variety of techniques; airbrush tomfoolery, dodgy OSL, and an unintentionally leaking puddle of resin water. Unfortunately it didn't work and I didn't manage to bag a win, although looking at the hundreds of hours put into some of the other entries I wasn't surprised. Next year I'm going back to 28mm!

I was in good company as a loser though as my favourite entry across all the categories was a White Scars Heresy Jetbike. I thought it was the best thing there, but the judges didn't seem to agree. So a big shout out to whoever painted that thing.

On the upside there were a lot of cool retailers around. I bagged some Vallejo paints that I wanted for a good price. Retailer wise I have to say that Troll Trader was a real highlight for me. I have bought from them quite a few times on eBay, but seeing the jumble-sale like stall covered in great deals was a sight to behold (well it would've been if it wasn't for the perma-scrum around the place as excited hobbyists jostled for position). I picked up some Slaanesh daemons at a great discount - a brand new in box Seeker Chariot for £12 (retail £16) and a box of Seekers for £12 (retail £17.50 - I didn't realise it was such a good deal till I looked it up to write this!). They even had an entire Storm Wing box for £70, that I almost bought just on principle alone.

I was also impressed with the quality of Prodos Games' miniatures, although only having one till was a bit of a bummer, but I'm glad I braved the 20 minute queue to buy some cool stuff . I'll be looking for them in the future to add more to my new Slaanesh based project. I might do a post about them in the near future, so keep your eyes peeled for that one.

There was a lot to see at Salute and as I didn't bring a camera I won't bother listing everything in a never ending stream of bullet points. Suffice to say I recommend the trip into London to really immerse yourself in the Nerdtopia for a day.

The official shot of my entry. How dare the judges side with actual painting skill over boobies!

The work in progress picture, Space marine for scale purposes - no wonder I struggled to finish!
PS. She also likes the Visual Kei band "D" from Japan, as shown by her well guarded autographed photo.


  1. Beautiful piece. Love the colors and the various effects you've pulled off here.

    If you'd like some critique (for future work) keep reading. Otherwise great job and I look forward to your next pieces!

    The main thing that stands out when looking at the model, is the point of focus. The focus point is not her face, it's the glowing orb. Some judges will immediately say no to a piece that doesn't concentrate on the characters face. Adjusting colors, tones, and possibly shifting the positions around (including making sure the highlights on her face are the brightest point on the model). Might have helped.

    The model isn't integrated into the base very well. Maybe work some dirt and water into her shoes?

    I think it's a great piece, just nitpicking like a judge would. If you ever have a chance to speak to the judges, ask them for feedback after the event. Many will sit down with you and go over the piece and give you great feedback.

    None is this is meant as an insult, just trying to help a fellow competitor!

  2. Strangely I had similar thoughts myself, but I really did run out of time - I was still working on her the morning of the show.

    The first part I painted was the skin and I really liked the colour, but man I don't recommend painting grey skin at that scale - it made it really hard to get any colours that would look good/match the thing and she started to become a bit of a mixing pot of colours in the end. Especially the cape, I was really unsure about adding green into the equation.

    Interestingly, I did a number "4" on her face purely as a sci-fi bit of detailing, but it later occurred to me that she is actually only the 4th model ever that I've painted with an airbrush.

    I'll still enter again next year, but I'm going back to a smaller scale!

  3. Sounds like you had fun! ^^

    I am no-one to really say, but the painting looks amazing to me.