Friday 7 June 2019

Hulking Peril

Despite the lack of updates, I've actually been pretty productive with painting recently. That said, productive doesn't necessarily indicate that I've completed any projects - most are on the threshold of being finished with horrible little jobs to do before I can tick them off. This will be explained through the miracle of pointless narrative and full colour photography!

In Space, no one can hear you unjamming your stormbolter.

The inspiration for the Deathwing squads was twofold. Firstly, they're great models which have heavy tabletop presence, even if they do only come in three pieces. The background to the Deathwing and Bill King's accompanying story in the sourcebook materials to the original Space Hulk expansion were a big inspiration to me as a pup. This, alongside the numerous Paul Bonner illustrations has always had me hyped on the mythos of these elite Dark Angel troops. Secondly, I really wanted to be able to play Space Hulk again with models that fitted the gaming pieces. Although the modern figures that came with the third edition game are spectacular, they don't really appeal to me as a painter (as of yet anyway) as the lure of the (almost) mono-pose is strong! Please ignore the lack of the Deathwing markings on the shoulder pads and greaves - my printer died before I could print any transfers out, so am currently looking for a new printer so I can finally finish them off.

Heavy flamer on point.

I've had these models knocking around in the bits box for a few years and were all job-lot rescues. Most have some damage to them, be it dents or small gouges, but thankfully I've been able to paint back some of the detail or disguise it as battle damage / weathering. In comparison to the newer terminators, these guys are about 10% smaller but it's still kind of strange to see them on 32mm bases!

Space Hulk kinda sounds like it'd be a sweaty gym in space. 

I've tried to stick as close to the original colour scheme as possible with the addition of the aforementioned weathering as it covers an omniverse of sins. I've a soft spot for painting cream as it's one of those colours you can get really nice transitions with. After a base coat of Bleached Bone / Screaming Skull, they were lightly washed with two coats of a 50/50 mix of Sepia wash and Lamian Medium before any deeper shading was added. From that point they were progressively lightened with Bleached Bone / Screaming Skull mixed with Ulthan Grey and finally with White Scar.

Having a sword will never not be cool.

Sadly I'm missing one of the Sergeants' banner poles so will have to do some hunting to track one of those down. I've cut out the banners from cotton which I've stained dark angels green and will then draw on the classic Deathwing 'smashed up angel' design before painting. There's a lot of folk incorporating natural materials into their miniature work right now (be it hair, wool, textiles) and I'm interested to see how it'll work out with these guys. If it's successful, I can see me re-painting a lot of banners! 

So yeah, the Deathwing are ready to engage on some Space Hulk suicide missions! I've got some left-over bits to make up some close-combat terminators, a Librarian and maybe also a Captain, but we'll see how it goes finishing off these guys first. Could do with resting the beige for a little while! However, to continue to theme of terminators, as a reward for (kinda) finishing off the Deathwing, I dug these old bad lads out of the bits box.

Not the purple enemy you were expecting,..

Ah, the glory of the original traitor terminators! These guys are the raddest. Based on the finalised Jes Goodwin terminator, these evil spacemen are festooned in Chaotic details. Having painted up an awful lot of Emperors Children before, I thought it'd be cool to have these as a nod to their Horus Heresy counterparts.

Traitor terminator Captain armed with the universe's most breakable daemon-weapon.

Surprisingly, there are under ten skulls on this model. For shame GW.

The five man squad was really just an excuse to paint up the Captain and the skull-faced Sergeant figures. The Captain in particular was a much-feared model back in the day, armed as he was with the terrifying daemon-sword. In reality, the daemon -sword is the world's most snappable bit of metal I've ever worked with - had to repair it several times as the fret-work design means that it's barely attached! I quite like how the Chaotic stormbolter is based on the design for the Inquistorial combi-weapon of the same period - obviously this is a heretical opinion and I will be re-educated for such thoughts.

Thankfully, over ten skulls on this guy.
Such a treat to paint this guy in particular. Sometimes, all you need is more skulls. He is technically supposed to be the Sergeant, but he looked too cool with the assault cannon to pass up on. Also, really into the design for the powerfists on the traitor terminators; there's something about juxtaposition between the heavy baroque edging and the protruding horny spike on the wrist that really works! 

How many CPs to Low Rimmer a Genestealer?

Having almost finished this lot off, I'm looking forward to making some more head-way through the pile-o-shame as well as having a go at the new Slaanesh Fiends that came out recently. I've a few old Ork models I'm working on right now too, so as always, plenty to be making a mess of. 

Tuesday 12 February 2019


Almost a year without an update eh? Last year was to put it extremely mildly distracting; four jobs within eight months definitely took the wind from the hobby sails and even though I'd done the odd bit of painting, I didn't feel the urge to share much of it. Thankfully, I'm in a much better place now and have had a few things moved off the hobby shelf which I'm pleased to show off.

Fulgrim was not a kit I took on lightly. Besides being pretty expensive and a challenging sculpt, there was the emotional baggage to contend with. Besides having possibly the most tragic fall in the Horus Heresy narrative, he also reminds me of Sephiroth from FFVII. I never finished FFVII because I was

1 - Not very good at the game


2 - Couldn't actually bring myself to kill Sephiroth at the end.

Call me a lamer, but I've a soft spot for antagonists who fall from grace. Don't even get me started on Biblical narratives regarding this! Anyway, the Fulgrim sculpt really reflects the point just before there is no possible redemption for him. I'm aware that many people criticise Simon Egan's handling of the facial sculpt, but I think it works perfectly. A moment of gut-falling inertia as the Laerian blade crosses the rubicon into tragedy.  Anyway, here's some photos.

Fulgrim dance times.

Not sure why the Forgeworld and other painted examples I could find of this model have dead Emperor's Children on the base. I know that this is partially a diorama base for the Istvaan battle, but I'd like to think that Fulgrim would at least like to be captured for posterity not treading on his own dead. So here he is, prancing around the departed remains of Iron Hands.

Tales with spooky swords never end well.

The model itself was fine to paint once it had been cleaned up. I'm not the biggest fan of resin and there was some really fiddly parts of this kit. If I was to tackle this again, I'd be a lot less blasé with the pteruges on the skirt thongs. I understand why they include more than you need as I lost several of them in the carpet!

Anguish before eternity.

I feel that a lot of people criticise the 'hair-dryer' mouth a little too harshly. I painted into it as much as possible to reduce the width and I think it's worked okay. I think this may be the first model I've ever painted with sculpted eyebrows too! On fleek Fulgrim!

Could we call this a Ferrus angle?

Really happy with the cloak as I was worried the red and purple would clash awfully. Managed to work out a way of mixing red glaze and mephiston red to make it as vivid as possible too. When I eventually revisit my Blood Angels I'll be utilising that technique a lot!

Now that he's done I'm drawing a close on my Emperor's Children. I'm not really into collecting more models than I need for an army I'll never play with and although I love the Phoenix Terminators and Palatine Blades figures, I can't be doing with more resin models. That is unless they release a pre-heresy sculpt of Fulgrim, in which case, please take my first-born. Oh, and the new Noise Marine totally doesn't count. 


Next up is a visit back into the past. To the deepest roots of the initial contact with the 41st millennium. We're going backward into a time before I'd even set foot in a Games Workshop store, to a time when I cacked my pants in my cousin's darkened bedroom watching him play Space Hulk on the Amiga 1200. 

Monday 19 February 2018

Chaotic Distractions

Starting with Abbadon and Fabius Bile that were featured in the last blog entry, I've been going through a spate of painting up a series of Chaos miniatures that were released in 1996. This is mainly because I'm easily distracted idiot, torn away from other painting projects by the slightest hint of 'old model that I always wanted to paint'  and because they're wonderful, wonderful figures. These  excuses have been compounded by the recent acquisition of some 90's gems that demanded attention including these 1996 release Terminators. These guys are hecka nails, they're covered in spikes and trophies and are perfect examples of Goodwin's Chaos output. They were a joy to paint up too and Abbadon doesn't seem as lonely as he has done.

Worst stag do ever.

The mid-90's were an awesome time for little men. However, there's a very disparate clash of sculpting styles within this release, with the confident, classic GW stylings of Jes Goodwin, (blessed be his name) the Khornate marines and Juggernaut by Dave Andrews to the more (excuse the expression) chaotic output of Aly Morrison. Whilst I may be accused of being a Goodwin fanboy, it cannot be ignored that the majority of his sculpts from this period are still relevant and officially obtainable today, whilst the passage of time hasn't been quite so kind to the other releases.

'What this stormbolter needs is a chainsaw'.

'What this combo-melta needs is a chainsaw'.

'What this power fist needs is less digits and more chainsaw'.

I think the main downfall of the non-Goodwin sculpts is that they don't have the same solidity of design. Much of the armour looks organic, (more of a smashed trifle on the floor than HR Giger) and despite incorporating some great ideas such as furs, pendents and older-looking equipment, none of this coalesces into a pleasing final form. There's two many horns, oversized gloves and funky-looking weapons. The helms of the marines themselves are puggish and ill defined. I've a few Aly Morrison figures knocking about which I love, but these are definitely not his best work. That said, these miniatures cannot be mistaken for anything other than Chaos marines; there's no way you could convert them into anything else without loosing that element of them, so they succeed in that aspect. However, it feels like a missed opportunity to have had some decent bad lad spacemen who didn't look like they were made of blu-tac.

B R A Z E N  D O O M

"We're going to need a bigger pooper scooper".

Although the Juggernaut by Andrews may be criticised for being a very static looking model, it is a huge improvement on the earlier incarnation which looked like an angry egg. I've waxed lyrical about his previously released Khornate marines and would love to get a chance to paint some of those up some day. Seldom seen on the tabletop, they scream feral brutality some 20 years on. In summary (and if I recall correctly) Andy Chambers once said that 'not all Chaos marines are possessed mutants, most of them are just really bad men'. In essence, less is more design wise. Unless you're a Khorne Berzerker then more is more. I'm not really aiming to make an army out of these guys as the models I'd like for it are a little too expensive on the second hand market right now. However, I'm looking forward to indulging myself over the next few months as I've been lucky enough to acquire a lot of these figures through job lots. To finish off, here's a rad little Epic Great Unclean one for the Corehammer monthly paint competition. Productive month so far!

Gonna need more antibiotics.

Sunday 7 January 2018

Perdidit Occasiones

Another year gone and sadly I've not achieved all I wanted to. I'd like to be able to say it was because I was so busy doing other things, but in reality I was a little lazy when it came to painting and gaming this year. I could have finished a few projects and got a couple more sessions in than I did, but I chose to waste time in other less productive ways and I'm a little ashamed of myself for that. However, I think I've rekindled the hobby flame in the past month or two and have reacquainted myself with some ongoing things. Here's how they're going so far,.

Digger-dumpers from the future.

This kit of futuristic tractors is so good. Infact, it's the kit that was responsible for firing up the hobby mojo again. Sometimes it's nice to have a quick win and these were cleaned, assembled and painted within the space of a week or so. They're fantastic narrative pieces too!

Originally I was going to submit a Sons of Horus army for the Armies on Parade competition this year. I'd finished a squad and a character model but ran out of steam after assembling a Knight Titan from House Aerthegn and the whole project sat on the hearth for four months. Thankfully, I finished the Knight in early December and have since been planning to add a Heavy Bolter support squad as well as a Reaver squad together to fill out the infantry. I'll most likely add a Predator and some Justarians to finish it off and may well enter them next year.

Dusty old Sons O' Horus

Thanks Citadel matt varnish for de-saturating ANOTHER load of models. When will I learn? 

I've got a couple of Knights kicking around on the pile and this was a great opportunity to assemble and paint one up. I liked the idea of the Sons Of Horus being a small but heavily armoured force, packing the might of a renegade Knight Titan as an ally. They're really nice kits and the biggest challenge was deciding on a good design for the heraldry. House Aerthegn is usually represented by a nautical star or crossed spears, but I decided to freehand a bat-winged arrow as Carfax's personal heraldry which has come out okay. Definitely going to plan the design a little better next time though! 

Carfax, Knight of House Aerthegn.

As close as you can get to Carfax without getting your face irradiated.

As a weird coincidence, I ended up assembling and painting an old Abbadon miniature which ticked another 'classic figure I wanted as a kid' from the list. He was an utter delight to paint and so I'm going to be following him up with a squad of matching Chaos Terminators to form a Black Legion bodyguard. I've recently come into possession of a bucketload of 90's Chaos stuff too, so this project could go anywhere. Whilst digging through the pile of rescue miniatures, I also decided to pick out and paint Fabius Bile - who knows what Chaotic plans 2018 has for this group of veteran bad guys?

Despoiling worlds since 1996. Keep up the good work fella!

Creepy Uncle Fabius gonna steal your genes.

Fabius was actually a bit of an effort to finish as I imagine he'd been battered through various bits boxes and paint jobs before he came to me. One side of his skin-coat was covered in superglue too, so it became more of a restoration project than a painting exercise! Still quite stoked on how he's come out, particularly enjoyed playing around with the reflective effects on his ichor vats.

The High Elf project is sat firmly on the back burner for now, but I'm looking forward to revisiting them. I've a mind to collect a small Undead and Empire army of the same period, but they're very distant projects. Likewise, the Space Hulk project has been temporarily suspended, but I've recently come into possession of the original Chaos Terminators, so I imagine they'll be causing a ruckus in the void at some point!

Sadly, despite a burning desire, I didn't get on the Necromunda reissue train. There were a few bills that had to be paid (real life eh??) and I've still yet to venture back into the Underhive. However, when I do, it'll be with an OG Escher gang backed up with a hired thug based on Purple Aki. Gonna be well grim.

Thursday 29 June 2017

Scenic Routes

As a side project, (one of many) I've recently been revisiting my scenery collection and sprucing it up a little as over the past few years it's begun to look a little tired. I've always had a soft spot for creating scenery and over the past decade Games Workshop have put out some great pieces of pre-made buildings that really invoke the ridiculously grim-dark architecture of the 41st millennium. Before the advent of Necromunda bulkheads, the only terrain that was available to buy was purely card based and the majority of the scenery used was either found objects such as lumps of cork or crudely made buildings. Last year, I posted a few photos of some Ork buildings I made with my Grandad over 20 years ago last year (christ where has that time gone?) and having some time off work, finally based them up and finished them off this week.

Definately not Ork church.


Was tempted to make this into an Ork toilet because I'm 12.

Reasonably happy with the way they've turned out! I tried to reflect as much detail as possible from the old paint job whilst making them look a little more like the amazing 90's Ork terrain the GW studio put out. 

The Squigster's of Mercy gig was good, but the crowd agreed that their earlier material was stronger.

However, I've fallen out of love with the majority of the kit terrain out there because it is all so similar. Even the new Necromunda-esque scenery that came with the new Armageddon Shadow Wars set is a bit suspect. Whilst it is festooned with detail, it leaves little to the imagination like the scratch built model buildings that graced White Dwarf in the 80s and 90s. However, the new shipping containers are incredible! Proper amazing kits to put together and paint. I don't mind each of these looking exactly the same because they're supposed to have that imperialist uniformity. I just can't get on board with the idea that every hive city looks the same. I'm not sure I'll be making much more scenery in the future as I simply don't have much space left to store new pieces. However, I hope to keep going back and adding more detail to the stuff I already have.

Amazon deliveries in the future are even less dependable.

In other hobby news, I'm almost done with my Dark Eldar Armageddon kill team (photos soon) so I'm hoping to get a couple of games in with them. I've also finished off the High Elf Repeater Bolt Thrower, which was fun to do, although the rest of that project will be taking a backseat for a little while so I can concentrate on finishing a few other things off. I'm also glad to say that the very last element of the Emperor's Children has been finished; another Contemptor joins the ranks of the loyalist few of Istvaan III. I've also recently picked up a Fulgrim model too and plan to do a little conversion work to create a pre-fallen version of the Primarch. 

Love these kits so much. That claw is proper threatening

I found it so hard not to festoon this guy in etched brass. However, I couldn't have him out-blunging Rylanor!

All them primary colours.

Lastly, I recently fancied painting a dragon and came across this awesome old Nick Bibby sculpt on eBay for less than £4.00. Couldn't resist the thing and had a blast painting him up. I also got to try using some of the new edge paints on him which are fantastic. Really impressed on how they make features pop. Plus, if the effect is too sharp, you can tone them down really easily with a wash or two. This fella will be joining the High Elves for all those games of Warhammer Fantasy 4th Edition I'll never be playing.

Look at his majesty. 

Love the expression on this guy! Well snaggletooth.

Hopefully going to get back into a fairly regularly pattern of painting now that we've finished some work on the house.  Really looking forward to getting some things ticked off the list! I'm not sure I'll be doing Armies on Parade in October this year as I don't have the space to store a new tile, but may try and doing something for fun for it with stuff I already have because I'm lazy and rubbish.

Monday 10 April 2017

Quarterly Plod

How is it April already? I've been a little distracted of late and haven't had as much time to paint as usual, but I have managed to make a start on the little High Elf project and finish off a few outstanding single models that have been on the list. I've also been inspired by some of the Dark AOS  stuff that's been doing the rounds and started putting together a random Chaotic centaur dude. I'll hopefully have him finished by the end of the month once I'm happy with the conversion. He's inspired by both the older more canine Khorne features as well as one of my favourite artists - should be a fun project!


Firstly, here's the start of the High Elf army. I'm planning on adding an additional regiment of 15 archers and then maybe painting up mage mounted on a griffon, but we'll see. Really looking forward to starting the old repeater bolt-thrower! The Warhammer Quest Ranger was a joy to paint, although I did manage to somehow make him look like a fabulous drag-queen facially. The rest of the army will follow this colour scheme pretty closely.

Gagging on Elven eleganza.

Lastly, I was lucky enough to snag a limited edition Canoness Veridyan model when they were released in January. I remember being enthralled by John Blanche's artwork that this figure is based on and even now it's an incredibly evocative image. The model itself was a bit of a pain to paint as the face had next to no detail to the right of the nose, so the eye and all the facial contouring on that side had to be painted in. 

-2 movement modifier for hobble heels.

I promise you there is an eye painted underneath that fringe!

Close up, it is a little clumsy, but overall I'm happy. It's so nice to see models based on original artwork. I'd be stoked to see more of this kind of thing from GW, particularly if they revisited more of John Blanche or maybe Mark Gibbons's old work!

Fucking nails. Those stabby pointe moves are kill. GW, I dare you to make this.

Saturday 18 February 2017

Paint Flashback

There seems to have been a recent trend in the Oldhammer camp for tracking down and making good old, out of production paint. I must admit to having thought about purchasing some of the old sets, having a fondness for the artwork on the boxes and a reoccurring desire to paint something in Moody Blue or Worm Purple (OG Genestealers I'm looking at you). However, it wasn't until recently I managed to luck out on purchasing one of the later, hex-bottle styled Citadel Colour paint sets that I started to think that there may be some reason other than nostalgia for collecting old paint. 

All sealed, still with original brush!

At the most basic level, this stuff still works. When you seal one of these pots, they remain sealed. The most recent selection of GW paints are terrible when it comes to both tightness of seal and longevity of use. I've thrown away over a dozen pots in the past year because the paint has solidified despite being fully closed. The new pot design is also more susceptible to rim clogging (hurhurhur), which wastes paint and further prevents the lids from closing. You're also getting more paint in these older pots too. Whilst the coverage isn't as good as the new base paints (which are fantastic) the majority of the older paints still lay down a solid cover over a coat or two. Also, the old paints can be picked up for the same price, if not cheaper if you're lucky. Whilst the 1993 range may lack the breadth and technical optionality of the modern collection, it more than makes up for in Goblin Green, Blood Red and Snakebite Leather. Plus they smell nicer too. I've tentative plans to create a small fourth edition High Elf army using these paints as I've recently had a real urge to visit them as a  (another!!) distraction project. 

Because I'm an obsessive dick, I bought a working copy too.

On the subject of paint, I finished off my Colourblind Demon entry for the local shop competition last week. The idea behind the event is that you randomly pick four different paints from sealed containers and choose another two from the rack. If you're lucky you'll then have six colours that work together on any model of your choosing. Thankfully I picked out a few greens and one of the new Thousand Son blue and had the perfect figure waiting for it! Meet Bogbrush, a 1988 Bob Olley Black Orc.

Minty fresh Orc.

I must admit, I'm looking forward to actually finishing this fella off as without being able to add any other colours to highlight or shade with, he feels only around 70% done. Still, I did manage to play about with using some of the Silver Birch leaves I collected during the Autumn on the base, pretty stoked on how they came out!