Thursday, 17 August 2017

When you accidentally kit bash a new project...

I like to think we have all done it. You find yourself sat down idly gluing some miniatures together when you realise that you have a spare body left over, and wouldn't it look good with that head you had spare from the last box you stuck together? Oh and do you remember that cool sword you had left over from the hero you converted two months ago? Lets stick that on him. Mmmh, well he's looking pretty good now, lets add a bit of greenstuff, and don't I have another one of these bodies laying around somewhere as well? Might as well make him a friend or two and maybe I could buy a box of this or that to round it out to a little force...

I do it all the time. Many of these projects are aborted or recycled before they can see the light of day but I've recently started one I think might go somewhere. It has been my intention for a while now to do a few AoS28-inspired war bands. I've already started work on 'The Brides of Nagash' and 'The Reliquary of St. Leonis' which should hopefully materialise some point in the coming months alongside my Flesh-Eater Courts army. After reading City of Secrets, which was a fun little book I'd recommend that really fleshed out what non-Stormcast people get up to in the mortal realms, I couldn't help but be inspired to chop up a long neglected miniature of Crone Hellebron I've never used for anything and see what I could make of it.

Apologies in advance for the bad photography, I happen to have limited means of taking photos presently. 

Morvhana Chillwind: privateer and assassin-for-hire
The result was this charming lady who ended up looking more of an assassin than the Scourge Privateer Captain I had envisioned. I therefore decided to try making such a miniature and began raiding my Dark Elf bits box. Before long I found myself chopping up a few Black Ark Corsairs and I have ended up with a little war band of elven pirates with which to reave the seas of the mortal realms. I did have to cringe a little seeing the paint on these miniatures as I think these corsair pieces were done about ten years ago now. Hopefully I shall be giving them a new lease of life with a fresh lick of paint sometime soon.

Vallach Kildare the Sea-Snake, and the crew of The Revenger

I certainly had a lot of fun with these miniatures. The Corsairs were my first plastic Dark Elf miniatures and I really enjoyed building and customising them back in the day. Now that the corsairs no longer need to be ranked up I could have even more fun with their poses and weapons. This was merely my first endeavour in seeing how far I could push the Corsair kit and I'm really tempted to pick up another box to see what other dynamic poses I can pull off. 

Telemore the Wind-Rider

While looting some of my elf/eldar bits boxes I came across a spare sail from the Dark Eldar Raider kit and some kind of Eldar grav-platform I think is part of a Guardian heavy weapon thing. An idea took shape and now this thing exists. Not sure what to call it but I'm imagining it as some kind of magical wind board that flies along the currents of sorcerous energies that blow through the realms. 

I also found out some Lothern Sea Guard that currently don't have a home and I'm thinking of converting them with Corsair bits to make them into a little group of harbour guards that protect the on-land interests of the Scourge Privateers. A while ago I also kit bashed a Sorceress on Dark Pegasus, which I may add to this group for some magical support if I can find what I've done with her. 

With regards basing I think I might repeat the kind of basing I did on my Hobbit Collection, in order to simulate the planks of a ship. I think I might even have the mould I made for the Goblin Town scenery laying around somewhere, though I think I might paint the wood in a lighter brown than I did with the Hobbit stuff. As for painting I'm not really sure what I am going to do with them. I'm currently leaning towards a bit of a reinvention of my old Dark Elf Army scheme with reds and golds but far brighter to reflect the more mythic-fantasy setting of Age of Sigmar better. 

No idea if this project will actually develop anywhere at all and its likely to remain unpainted for a time, but it was fun to stick together and play around with for a bit. We shall see...

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Witch Hunters on the Workbench

Things have continued to be hectic these past few months but I have managed to squeeze in some time for painting and modelling. I have principally been working on the miniatures of the Triumvirate of the Imperium box and some of their associated models as well as a few other odds and ends. 

This is my army of Battle Sisters and Ecclesiarchy units as it currently stands. I'm going for a darker and subtly metallic version of the Order of the Bloody Rose colour scheme while trying to capture an element of Blanch-ian grim-darkness that inspired me to begin 40k in the first place. After the summer I shall have to take some better photos of Saint Celestine herself who is currently giving me plenty of grief with her wings which I just can't seem to get quite right. 

In the background there are also some Kingdom Death miniatures and their art cards which I am using for reference. I am a big fan of the miniatures produced by Kingdom Death and I wish I had a greater level of skill with which to do them justice. While boutique nightmare horror with all manner of violent and sexual themes is not to everyone's taste (not to mention the issues surrounding pin-up miniatures), they are undoubtedly some of the most technically stunning and amazingly detailed miniatures on the market and I hope to get around to painting more of them.

I've also managed to do some work on Inquisitor Greyfax and my Inquisitorial Stormtroopers. I have all of the base colours on and a few highlights though I think there is a way to go with them yet. I really like Greyfax's miniature and I've thoroughly enjoyed painting her thus far. I managed to get some of the old metal Kasrkin minis cheap off of eBay (though they required some new backpacks and a little converting) which I thought would make the perfect bodyguards for her.

Belisarius Cawl has been a fun miniature to paint thus far even if he doesn't really fit with my Witch Hunters as a single Mechanicus miniature. Rather than going for a traditional red-robed look, I decided to go with scarlet armour plates and monochrome robes I will later adorn with the Mechanicus gear pattern. I have one or two ideas as to what exactly I'd ultimately like to do with him but we shall have to wait and see whether I ever manage to assemble the time or funds for any of my half-baked ideas. 

This past month or so has also seen me pick up my pencils again after a lengthy absence from sketching. This was the first thing I doodled to try and get used to a range of different pencils again and its likely that if I do any more hobby-related sketches they will turn up on the blog.

I currently have a bit of free time during which I hope to not only do some more work on my Witch Hunters but also on my Age of Sigmar projects which have been steadily developing in the background. Above is a bit of a teaser for my AoS project which I am currently titling: At the Court of the Silver King, which I am very excited about. I'm also planning on doing something with my guardsmen for Shadow War Armageddon as my brother has already assembled a Chaos Marine war band and is itching to kill anything that isn't wearing power armour. My Menites are sat waiting in the background as are my Tomb Kings which I'm re-painting, not to mention my Dark Angels who are in a sorry state so I think I've got a busy summer ahead of me!

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Hobby Goals 2017

Well 2016 wasn't a particularly productive year in the hobby for me (being an all-round bad year for many), though in the last few months of it some painting and modelling did get done in the form of some Warmachine miniatures and my Flesh-eaters, respectively. With the start of 2017 (after an incredibly busy January) I have decided to take stock of my current hobby situation and actually write down what I am doing, rather than just having a nebulous idea of what projects I am working on in my head. This is largely for posterity and I look forward to seeing how successful I have been at achieving these things by the end of the year!

Earl Grymtyde of Gravenport
Currently a permanent feature of my desk telling me to get on and do some painting


These are my current main projects which I am working on and should hopefully feature most prominently on the blog if this year goes as planned. These are listed roughly in the order of priority I have given them though is subject to change:

- Flesh-eater Courts - This is my current lead project with loads still to do. The fact that practically everything is WIP right now is why they haven't appeared on the blog yet beyond my Mournghoul. I am hoping to visit them in the next few weeks and get some troops done to put on the blog.

- Witch-Hunters - My old force of Sisters of Battle and Inquisitorial stuff has undergone a few dozen different iterations over the years and with the release of Saint Celestine and rumours of plastic Battle Sisters on the horizon I have decided to re-paint and re-vamp this army. More on this coming soon.

Test scheme for my Battle Sisters
- Lich Warband - My brother and I are working on a skirmish project for which I am building a small force centred around a character who has appeared in several projects of mine. Originally being my first Dungeons and Dragons character: the Sun Elf necromancer Avrilar Amalith, self-proclaimed Lord of Corbalan and Dark-Lich, is finally getting a small army to boss around. This project is very WIP at the moment but is slowly going places.

- Menoth - I am continuing to work on my Menites whom I unfortunately didn't manage to finish before Christmas. In fact I have elected to take a small break from them and focus instead on the three projects listed above as I wont have the opportunity to battle with them until Easter anyway.


I also have a few ongoing projects which I am working on intermittently. These are admittedly projects I have started and not finished due to fatigue or getting sidetracked, mostly being army re-painting and other stuff that keeps getting put on the back burner. These aren't listed in any particular order.

- Tomb Kings - I am in the middle of re-painting this army for display purposes, other things however keep getting in the way of me moving beyond base colours. Painting the whole army in stages as well is exhausting. Painting all the gold on 100+ miniatures takes a long time and is quite an insane thing to undertake now that I think about it. 

- Imperial Guard - I am also in the middle of re-painting this army to sit alongside my Sisters of Battle. They are on hiatus for now while I work on my Witch-Hunters. I am currently entertaining notions of breaking this army up a bit and returning it to its roots as allies to my main Witch-Hunting force. Possibly converting some superfluous miniatures into a Necromunda war band if I ever get around to it. 

- Kingdom Death - I have a backlog of various KD models I have picked up over the past two years. I use these miniatures to experiment with different painting styles so I usually only work on them when I feel like breaking up batch painting. Something that hasn't happened a lot this past year as I haven't really been painting at all!
3 WIP minis I am working on at the moment
- Misc. Age of Sigmar stuff - I have some random Elves and some Sisters of Sigmar I would like to do something with, even if they just end up as small war bands that sit alongside my main Death Alliance stuff. Will just have to wait and see what happens with them.


These are ideas that I have had, but possess no current plans to pursue. I have written them down in rough order of how likely I am to actually do them though it is unlikely any of them will get done while I still have ongoing projects.

- Tzeentch - I have been thinking of re-basing my chaos army onto round bases and picking up some the new Arcanites. The new Lord of Change in particular is making it really hard not to want to, especially the Kairos Fateweaver configuration. My main problem is that my current AoS army is still in the works with several miniatures I still need to buy bases for.

I need this in my life!
- Adeptus Mechanicus - Always loved the miniatures and I will be getting Belisarius Cawl in the box with Saint Celestine so he may end up with some friends at some point depending on if I decide to re-visit Tzeentch or not.

- Space Marines - I have a small force of Dark Angels Space Marines I am not particularly happy with who might receive some attention. Have been thinking about repainting them as Blood Angels and adding some of the miniatures from that range I really like. Depends on how my other Imperial projects go. 

- Blood bowl - for a long while now I have contemplated putting together a team, most likely of Dark Elves. While this would be a relatively low-cost project I always seem to have other things going on.

- Infinity - I have been considering this for quite some time. I was going to pick up an ALEPH starter box a few years ago but got distracted by Warmachine instead. If my other projects are a success I might start nearer the end of this year.

- Sisters of Silence - I absolutely love the miniatures and I am not sure whether to just add a squad to my Witch Hunters or if I should actually start a small 30k force of them. I suppose it depends on if Forge World announce any plans to expand on them in a meaningful way like they are doing with Custodes.

If Forge World could make these that would be fantastic

- Busts/large scale figures - I have often fancied trying out painting resin busts or larger scale miniatures. Alas, the smaller stuff always seems to win my wallet.

- Historical - As a student of history and a miniature war gamer I probably ought to have done something that combines the two by now, even if it is just a handful of English Civil War regiments.

So those are my current thoughts on what I am doing and thinking of doing in the hobby this year. As ever projects I want to do or have abandoned in favour of shiny new stuff outweighs what I am actually working on at the moment. While this is the final year of my undergraduate degree I am on top of my work (in some places well ahead) and I hope this should free up some time to paint the ever-increasing stack of unpainted miniatures I own. 

Every hobbyist I have met has a habit of stacking up a lot of projects, unpainted miniatures, and unfulfilled ideas. I hope to burn through as many of mine as possible in 2017 which is already shaping up to be an interesting year in the world of miniature wargaming. 

This year I am hoping to try out some new things, improve my painting skills, and have a lot of fun with some unusual modelling projects. I plan on putting much of this on the blog to help motivate me and I hope those of you who are following enjoy what I put out. 

- Doombringer

Monday, 21 November 2016

Returning to Warmachine

Over the summer my brother, on a whim, busted out his Warmachine stuff and coaxed me into having some games with him. While I fared miserably against the might of Cygnar, it did prompt me into doing something with my Menites. I started playing Warmachine in 2013 but between Dark Elves and the End Times my fledgeling collection has received very little attention for quite a few years now.

After a few games in August I decided to re-paint my Warmachine stuff and add a few things to my collection as a side project to my Flesh-Eater Court. I have already spent some time experimenting with colour schemes and after failing to work out a gold and bone scheme I have settled on a dark look of silver, black and deep turquoise.

I have based the look on this plog I found on Privateer Press's Forums: DonQuijotes Menoth
While I won't be copying the scheme exactly I will admit that I am borrowing very heavily from it as inspiration. For a long time I have not really liked darker Menoth schemes but this one won me over and I have elected to batch paint my entire collection in this darker style.

I would like to qualify that I have not suddenly become a master of tiny freehand overnight. The text on her scroll was done using an exceptionally fine pen.

I appreciate these are not the best photos and the minis are incredibly WIP but I though that if I post them now I will find the motivation to try and finish them before Christmas. Check back in a few weeks time and we shall see if we can get some better picture of some finished minis on here.

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

How to: Basing in the Realm of Death

I haven't seen too many basing tutorials for Age of Sigmar and thought I would throw this one into the mix for people to enjoy. It is a variation on a few techniques and tutorials I have seen floating around the web to make lava or to create the impression of an energy impact.

The idea behind this base is that the malignant magics of the realm of death are seeping up and forcing their way through the earth as battle is joined on the plains of Shyish.

1. Swirl your colours of death together. I elected to use several of the paints which I have used for spirits in this army: Xereus Purple, Baharroth Blue, Celestra Grey, Ulthuan Grey and Ceramite White

2. The base is covered in a layer of clear PVA glue. This will help the Martian Ironearth crack more dramatically.

3. When the PVA is dry put a good coating of Martian Ironearth over the base. On larger bases you will see it start to crack and separate mere seconds after application due to the PVA so make sure you work quickly. To help the effect I like to hold the drying Ironearth under a hairdryer for a few minutes as well; holding the hairdryer about 12 inches away from the base so as not to warp the plastic when on full heat.

4. When the base is dry some abaddon black is lightly dry brushed over the top just to help darken the earth and create contrast with the magical colours beneath.

5. The lip of the base is painted with Naggaroth Night mixed with a small amount of Xereus Purple (about 2:1). I then like to finish the base off with some Mordheim Turf and a little splatter of blood. When I come to stick together my Flesh-Eaters I will also paint up the odd skull and bits of bone to glue onto the base as well to help break it ups bit.

Below are some examples of this technique used on larger bases and also demonstrating how it can be done to make it appear as if spirits are rising out of the tortured earth.

Best of luck with your own basing in the Mortal Realms!

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