Spent a couple evenings just cleaning and assembling Vikings (plus a couple random Hasslefree minis).
Started just thinking I’d get a couple prepped for future Historical-themed painting contests, then got into the swing of it and did a bunch. Even then I was still planning to leave the spear wielders until later (I’m going to be ordering some wire spears as soon as Gripping Beast have their Viking dice back in stock), but just kept going.
‘Twas a strange mood for me, but I figured I’d take advantage while I was feeling it.
I’ll have to post the whole lot of them at some point, but this’ll have to do for now…
Finally, my third September miniature, and my entry into the SciFi/Modern painting competition at ThunderCon.
This one was never likely to make the top 3; SciFi/Modern is our toughest competition, but I often like to use these competitions just get some cool miniatures into peoples’ faces.
It’s a pretty simple miniature – not a lot of bells and whistles – but it looks really good. Another brilliant miniature from Hasslefree.
I did have one unfortunate disaster. I was basically done with Shaggy and was working on Qadira when I spilled about a half bottle of Reikland Fleshshade. Shaggy took the brunt of it, and wound up soaked to about the knee.
I used a paper towel to stop the pool from spreading and ran Shaggy down to the bathroom for a quick rinse, which as you might expect did a number on some of the previously applied washes. The figure I just touched up, but the base had been basically finished and I didn’t want to mess up the lower portion of the figure any further, so I didn’t do much recovery on the base. Most of the paint held okay, but I lost some of the deepest shades.
Regardless, I’m endlessly entertained by this miniature, and it got a lot of comments and attention (even if it didn’t win anything). It generated less of discussion, and that’s really the most I can generally hope for is some conversation and newly-sparked interest.
This miniature has been sitting on the shelf for a while now, waiting for me to be ready for it.
Each arm was a separate piece, with the join being just under the bangle – looking item on each upper arm. I knew I was going to want to pin them in place, but I’ve never had a small enough drill bit for the task. I’ve used a coworker’s on occasion, but I wanted to be able to work on this one at home. A while back my last micro bit finally broke, and I found myself ordering more. I bought a whole pile of them at once, and when they finally arrived a few months later (ah, international shipping), I decided it was finally time to tackle this model.
I used a 0.6mm bit and a piece of a staple for the task, and I’m very happy with the results.
I painted this one at the same time as I was working on the viking Bondi and Shaggy. I was originally planning to base it for use in regular Frostgrave, but in the end I decided that was probably pushing the ‘insufficiently dressed for the weather’ thing a bit too far (I already have a bunch of those, haha), and decided she’d make a pretty great Heritor or Warden for F:GA.
I definitely ran into some hiccups applying the washes, and had to repaint/rewash a couple of flesh areas, but came out pretty decently. Used a lot of different shades on this one, which is something I’ve been making an effort to do; I used to just wash the whole miniature in a single shade, and with a few exceptions, this is well worth the effort.
The water ended up drying a little further (and hence more clear), but I definitely should have kept the matte clear coat off of it. Something to keep in mind for next time.
Short post. This is my first Bondi, all finished up. The clear coat is on there and he was entered into the miniature painting contest at ThunderCon. He didn’t place, which was pretty disappointing as there weren’t very many entries in his category and I thought third place was in reach. Maybe next year.
I’m hoping I get to see the detailed judging results on him, as I’d love to see how close it was. I’m not a big fan of highlighting, which often hurts my chances in competitions, but it would be nice to know what else I should be focusing on for next time.
Bonus? I’m now 12% of the way through painting my SAGA warband. Progress!
So, how’s that fellow with the awkward arm turning out?
Not badly, methinks. There’s a little more to be done in terms of touch ups, I still want to step his injury up a little further and see what I can do to ‘clean up’ some patchy spots in the grungy washes. All that said, though, I really feel like it’s working. I’ll post something final shortly!
August was another historical miniatures painting contest. Turnout was unimpressive again (historical just doesn’t draw the crowd that SciFi/Modern and Fantasy do), but it gives me a great push to slowly make progress on my Vikings. And make progress I did.
I decided to embrace the grungy effects that I ended up using on the previous one, and I think the intention helped.
Good practice for my next viking. He’s not a Berserker, but one of his arms hangs a little funny.
I’m thinking I can make it look badly wounded; that way it will be hanging dead instead of awkwardly. I should be making some progress tonight, so we’ll see how it goes.
I don’t know if I’ll ever get to play at all, but I recently picked up a Saga warband from Gripping Beast. I opted for the metal Vikings, which means I got four berserkers among my miniatures. Being historical miniatures, there is of course some variance expected from what’s shown on the packaging… the packaging let me know I might get a berserker in a loincloth, I got one in the buff.
He’s pretty amazing.
Obviously he’s not done yet, but I thought I’d share the progress I’ve made so far. First step was to clean up the miniature a bit. It’s not the cleanest sculpt I’ve ever seen, but based on the reading I’ve done online I get the impression the bar for historical miniatures is a little lower than for some other genres. Given that these guys worked out to around $2 each, I think they look pretty decent.
Next on my agenda was doing something about the base. As it’s a historical miniature, it has the traditional small flattish bar attached directly to the model’s lowest point. Yuck. To deal with that I broke out my jar of Vallejo ‘Grey Pumice’.
It’s basically a gritty acrylic medium that can be used instead of the traditional sand-and-glue method when basing models. I used it to build up the flat Renedra base until it appeared level with the top of the miniature base. Now it bevels at the edges and should dry brush nicely later.
Another cool aspect of these miniatures that surprised me (again, probably nothing new to historical fans) is that almost none of these miniatures came armed. A couple were sculpted with weapons, but most had cupped hands awaiting a weapon selection, and the warband came with a bag full of swords, axes, shields, and spears. This fellow came with one cupped ‘weilding’ hand and an arm braced for a potential shield, but I felt like any Berserker *so* berserk that he charges into battle naked was probably not going to hang onto a shield (or any particular equipment) mid-battle, and therefore worthy of a random assortment of weaponry. With that in mind I did some modification to the shield arm so I could put a sword in his off hand. At this point I broke my only appropriate micro bit, and the new ones I ordered online have still not arrived even now. Last weekend I got tired of waiting and carved the hand out using the broken remains of that last bit. It was messy, but it worked.
A coat of brush-on primer went on after that, and this weekend I started painting him. I feel like the paint is really bringing out the imperfections in the miniature, but hopefully they won’t be too obvious when all is said and done.