Saturday, 5 July 2014

Bones Oxidation Beast and Bones Battleguard Golem

Deadly Enemies

I really enjoyed painting these two, they were painted as a pair but I wanted to base them separately so I could use them for other purposes than just as display peices.
The Battleguard Golem was a bit of a challenge, I didn't like the model that much, the proportions seem a bit off and it never really inspired me to paint it.  But when I was looking for a model with a lot of metal to be the Oxidation Beast's victim this one stood out, not only is his armour at risk of being consumed by the monster, he is his armour so his very existence is in jeapody.

I began with a base coat of Boltgun Metal with a wash of Nuln Oil to bring out the details, on the right side he then got successive layers of Runefang Silver, washes and finally a layer of Gloss Varnish over the bright silver to make it really shine (a trick I picked up from Hendybadger, thanks mate!) this contrasts well with the very matte finish you get from the Ryza Rust and Typhus Corrosion.  The Sword was painted with the same colours but different washes and with the addition of a Burnished Gold hilt and an ivory pommel.  I wanted the sword to look quite different to the armour and I think it worked ok.  The gem on the blade, they eyes and the gem on the back of the armour started with Temple Guard Blue, a little Nihilakh Oxide (Technical Paint) for the glow and a point of pure white at the top.

I wanted it to look like the Oxidation Beast's attack was creeping up his body from his left foot and hand up through his body, so over the base coat I layered Typhus Corrosion and Ryza Rust with a little Runefang Silver on the edges, i'm really happy with the effect, these Technical paints are very very effective.

The Oxidation Beast (or for us old D&D players, The Rust Monster) started to go wrong but i'm happy with how it turned out in the end.  
I took my inspiration from real world Millipedes and started with a sandy beige colour with layers of Agrax Earthshade, Army Painter Strong Tone Ink and Reikland Fleshshade and
it was starting to look like a Facehugger from the film Alien, it just didn't look right.  In the end I layered Vallejo Parasite Brown over the central body sections and forelimb armour plates and highlighted the edges of the side armour with a pale mix of white and Bubonic Brown.  At first I thought this was too light a shade but it's grown on me and now I think it was the right choice.   

Mobile Painting Desk

Like a lot of painters I don't have the luxury of a permanent studio area to paint in, to get around this I use a mobile paint station.  This has evolved and changed quite a bit since I got back into painting and I thought an update would be a good idea.

You might notice the doorbell on the bottom right. This is to summon my 15yr old son when I want him to come down from his room, usually to make me a cup of tea.  I know, i'm a bad parent, but he doesn't have any other chores.

The desk itself has a raised shelf across the back, a large painting area, a pull out keyboard shelf which is handy for keeping tools on and plenty of space underneath for storage boxes (mainly filled with half painted minis).  You can pick these up on eBay for under £10.

I'll run over how I use this space and what some of the additions are.  Across the top shelf I have two three-teired nail varnish display shelves (£8 each from ebay, let me know if you want the details) which hold 33 Vallejo 17ml bottles or a combination of Citadel bottles.  These even fit the now discontinued but excellent six sided bottles they used to make.  In front of the stands I have another row of bottles and the Technical paints and washes I use a lot.  Finally attached on the left is a magnifying desk lamp with a daylight bulb, I use this mostly for the light but the lens comes in handy sometimes.

Covering the painting area I have a large non slip self healing cutting mat, these are great and really cheap at about £5.  From left to right on this shelf I have a small bench vice I picked up from a junk shop, this is fantastic for modelling and I recommend picking one up if you see one (one tip, get one with the square flat anvil area behind the vice, its really useful).  I also have a desk clamp with a magnifying glass which come sin handy for holding models together while glue dries.  

On the right I have a water jar and a brush holder, this is full of mostly old brushes which get used to metallics, drybrushing, pva glue.  I have a second pot I keep my Winsor & Newton Series 7 brushes in (bought for me by a good and very generous friend as a thank you for painting a wedding cake topper for him) along with a precision craft knife and my pin vise drill.  I also have a couple of Games Workshop's mixing palettes which I use all the time, normally i'm not a great fan of GW's accessories but these are fantastic because they are slightly slippery and can be washed clean really easily. Some of the palettes i've used in the past are a real paint to clean and built up old paint holds dust which can make the mix you use over the top gritty.

The pull out shelf is generally used as more space for tools like pliers and craft knives and I use it when i'm putting together larger models and need more room.  Under this shelf i've got four sets of storage boxes with pull out draws, these hold basing materials, spare paint and far more half finished miniatures than i'm comfortable to admit.

The real advantage to this desk for me is that I can use my computer while I paint, watch TV and be sociable with my wife while she watches TV but I can wheel it into another room when i'm not going to be painting for a while or need the family room tidy for a party.  The disadvantage is I can't really use an airbrush as I think it would make too much mess and noise and i'd really like to try one out.  

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Reaper Bones Orc Chieftan and Scibor Mad Dayn

This week I decided to get my act together and do some painting, to kickstart it I treated myself to a resin miniature from Scibor and while I was working on that I finished off the Reaper Orc Chieftan that had been stalled for ages.

I'm pretty sure this is a problem common to many painters, a long line of miniatures that have been started and not finished, in some cases just primed and based and in others close to finished.  I have far too many of them to be comfortable with and have decided to make a concerted effort to get them finished.  We'll see how well that works!

Ok first the Scibor Dwarf.  This is the first Scibor miniature i've painted and one of the few resins  i've ever bought.  The sculpting is very clean although not as imaginative as I had thought, a few more details like a belt knife or some more detailed boots would have been nice but the pose is fun and I can't complain about the quality.

I tried some free hand tartan on the trousers which sort of worked but they came out a lot darker than I think they should have.  The problem was of my own making, I made the shirt too dark and lighter trousers looked weird so I had to darken them.  I also tried out the Citadel technical paints 'Ryza Rust' which I love.  The trick is to use a stiff stipple or old dry brush, wipe most of the paint off onto a tissue then dab the area that should be rusted until a deep enough layer has formed.  The edge is then picked out with Runefang Silver to make it look like that's the only part that gets any action.  

The Reaper Bones Orc Chief had been sitting staring at me from among his half painted friends for quite a long time.  Long enough to have hatched numerous evil plans for my demise from the look on his face!  However, those Technical paints came to the rescue again and motivated me to use the 'Typhus Corrosion' 'Ryza Rust' and 'Blood for the Blood God' versions to make him look really grungy.  The Typhus goes on first which makes the metal look really grimy like the inside of an oily engine, over this patches of rust are allied then  the same Runefang treatment to sharpen the edges.  On the axe the Blood for the Blood God is then applied, its pretty gloopy but not as good as the other technical paints I don't think.