Tuesday, March 8, 2011

February Minis Painting Roundup

Started the month with: 168 unpainted minis. (8 from my Jan "primed project list")
Purchased/added: 23 minis
Painted: 20 minis. (8 from my Jan "primed project list")
Removed: 8 minis (my 3 DBA armies will use 84 of 92 figures from the infantry set)
End the month with: 163 unpainted minis.

  • Fire Beetles (x6; Otherworld Miniatures #DV4a; 3 as Fire Beetles, 3 as Generic Beetles)
  • Damien, Hellborn Wizard (Reaper Dark Heaven Legends #03321)
  • Aziz Al-Jawar (Reaper Dark Heaven Legends #02426)
  • "Amathor Arch Mage" (Reaper Dark Heaven #02319)
  • Orc Brutes(x2 Reaper Dark Heaven Legends #02550 Orc War Party)
  • Pig-nosed orcs (x3; Otherworld Miniatures #O6; combined with the Orc Brutes above to form a command unit)
  • Ghosts (x2; Citadel Warhammer #8572F) 
  • Red Dragon (Wizards of Coast #40017)
  • Skeletons (x3; Otherworld Miniatures #UD1a)

So only a net movement of 5 minis in the right direction. It was a short month and I spent a good chunk of time in modeling and prep mode as versus painting - orcs, the skeletons, two dragons and starting the conversion of figures for my DBA army. As a result, I didn't quite hit a figure a day, more like about 7/10ths of a figure a day. Good news is I can eliminate 41 minis next month with my DBA army! I'm also happy that I completed the last of my Jan "primed project list". 39 miniatures that sat around primed for almost a year are now in the case, ready to play. 

Some highlights from the month:

Winsor/Newton Series 7 brushes - extremely huge difference and well worth the cost. I made the vast majority of my brushes obsolete with two of these - #1 and #2 sizes. Amazing how well I can paint now with them. It's challenged me to get even better with my technique. I'm not sure I'm there - I think I'm hitting a plateau, but I keep trying harder stuff to improve.

Green Stuff sculpting - After my success last month with the mule's packs, I attempted a hand and shield with one of my OWM pig nosed orcs. I didn't want to use the hand holding the Dwarf's head - mainly because there are no (living) Dwarfs in my campaign. So rather than hack the hand, I decided to do something even more difficult and make my own shield and hand. First one came out very rubbery, couldn't superglue it - my ratio of blue to yellow was all off. Second one was a bit rubbery at first, but after 4 to 5 days, it hardened rock solid. The hand looked terrible though, so I ended up using the dwarf head's hand. I hacked off the Dwarf head, made greenstuff thumb/finger and shield straps. It's not OWM quality sculpting but with dark paint/black wash, it's acceptable! I'm not displeased with how it turned out.

Reusing recipes - The Citadel ghosts (which, BTW, I love the personalities of their expressions - there's something about the slightly sinister/slightly goofy/slightly whimsical nature of them that I really like) were painted with two separate recipes or schemes - the shrouds were painted as I did for the Mega-Minis ghost last month, and their faces were painted using a scheme from the bell clapper of a Games Workshop Skaven "Screaming Bell." I just liked the look of how the bell clapper went from this sickly green to white/green and decided it's perfect for how I see non-corporeal undead.

I have a book where I write down my recipes for later use. I also do color tests on 3x5 cards and keep those for later use, in case I want to figure out how I did something.

OWM Skeleton - I was working on the skeletons (UD1a) and decided to take the advice I read on the Otherworld forums and pin the arms. Unfortunately, my pinning was an utter failure. Either the pin was at a "bad" angle or I didn't have enough in the ball of the arm joint to make a good fit, but I just struggled with all of them.

One in particular (the spear guard) gave me fits. I was going to put the skeleton standing at attention with a spear/shield, and after 8 times (5 with superglue, 3 with JB Weld) of putting arms on, them not bonding/holding enough and working loose, me scraping clean, regluing, I just had ruined shoulder bones and crudded up arms/sockets. I thought I would have to put that figure away as a ruined one. I was given a great idea to get the shoulders in place anyway I could, then cover the shoulders with a "rotted" cloth. Great idea!After a search around the house for non-embossed tissues or cloth, I found that my box of industrial paper towels work great. So now the model has tons of JBWeld on the shoulders but it will be tabletop acceptable. It was fitting that these were the last minis I completed in Febrary, considering I was about to give up on them. They ended up looking really good.

DBA Army - I decided to go with the I/1a army, even though I didn't have enough archers. I was going to use foamboard "flats" with labels glued to the top. Some email inquiries landed me into new territory - figure trading! Mike Monaco of Swords & Dorkery had some spare Biblical figures, as well as plenty of teaser plastics to try and lure me into the addiction of army building! In return, I traded Mike some NIB Reapers that I have laying around. Thanks again, Mike! (Although,  so far, I've made my Saving Throw vs. temptation.)

After I convert a Nim skirmisher to look like an archer, and some minor conversion to be done on the Persians and Egyptians, I will have my 32 bowmen. Wahoo! I wasn't able to get started on this army in February, but that's on the roster for minis I'll be painting in March.

BTW.... one genuine ChicagoWiz-No-Prize to the person that can guess the TV show that influenced my choice of coloring for the orcs... :) (My AD&D players cannot guess, as they already know... oh yes... *evil grin*)


Michael Curtis said...

We'll it's good to see that "ALF" has had some sort of lingering culture effect...other than in pog form, that is. :-)

ChicagoWiz said...

Ouch. I didn't know my paint jobs sucked THAT much!!! Damn...
(that was a tongue in cheek response. No, not ALF, you'd have to go back earlier.)

Michael Curtis said...

I think it was the schnoz on that one orc that had me convinced it was ALF-inspired...that and the tan brown color.

Aplus said...

Nice work. You're getting to be quite good. I especially liked your idea about testing colors on 3x5's and I'll be stealing that one. I liked hearing about how you saved the skeleton too. Pinning can be a bitch, and I think I may have to get a dremel to help with that job.

The thing I don't understand is how you and many others can use such large brushes. My biggest brush is a 0, and I only use that for large surface areas. My go-to brush that I use for almost everything is a 5/0.

ChicagoWiz said...

@Aplus - thank you! I was just updating my March minis post (I keep a running draft going throughout the month) and wondering if I should keep doing these posts. I'm glad my ideas helped.

The Winsor/Newtons are amazing, even with the #2 and #1. The point is small enough that I do my eyes and finest work with the #1. For broad areas, I still use a flat brush - but I would go nuts if I had to do big areas with tiny brushes. I find I stroke with the side (top 1/3) of my W/Ns for areas that I need to get a lot of pigment on.

And thank you for the compliments. I wish I could take better photos, I think I might be screwing up my lighting.

ken said...

Taking photos of my figs is probably the hardest thing for me. I'nm not a photographer and don't have the time to be one. I'll suffice with my macro on my phone for now.

Really like the figs this month. Great job. and the WotC Dragon turned out great. Like what you finally did with the wings. Looks very old skool.

I have been distracted, but got two giant radiated wasps done last night. If you evr need giant bugs and such, go to the dollar store. My giant rad roaches are next and at about 3 cents a piece can't beat the price.

Looking forward to the Army.

Gabriel said...

Planet of the Apes?

Yeah, I cheated, you said it in your last post... :P

bliss_infinte said...

Nice job on those minis! The round bases look nice too.

ChicagoWiz said...

@bliss - thanks!

ChicagoWiz said...

@Gabriel - congrats! I'll be sure to drop one NoPrize in the mail, hope they don't lose it... ;)