I made a small diorama as a gift the other day and am only now getting around to posting about it – mainly because by the time this post goes live, the gift will be recieved and it shall be safe to do so. I wanted to create something fun, but I have also wanted to mess about with creating slime. I’ve read several tutorials about using UHU glue and wanted to give it a go. Here are the results:
First of all, UHU is very stringy, so it was perfect for creating ropes of slime between aspects of the miniature. It got stickier as it began to go off, which meant it was easy to shape as well.
I think the hardest part was the first step – attatching bristles to where I wanted the drops to be. It needed a bit of patience to wait for the super glue to go off before I was able to attach the next one.
UHU glue does take paint well, so it was good to put a wash over the top and see it retain its shine. I want to do some more work around this, however I also have a few commissions to work on, all the learning from the Seige Studio course to work through as well as other projects. Maybe there should be a few extra hours in the day so I can get everything done!
So, building on what I wrote about painting bone, I thought I would share how I paint freehand skulls next. This is just my thoughts on the subject, and I am sure there are countless others out there. This is what works for me.
First off, you’re going to need the following:
As well as a wet pallette, brushes, paint thinner and clean water. You will also need a picture to follow. I used the Legio Mortis one I used the other day for the freehand on the top of the Reaver, but there are plenty of good pictures out there on Google too.
Use the pencil to sketch the outline of the image on the panel you’re going to be painting on:
Step 3: Shade the skull shape in with thinned Rakarth flesh
Step 4: Mix Ushabti bone with Rakarth flesh 50/50 and start picking out the bits that are going to be highlighted.
Step 5: Add extra highlights to the lighter spaces with Ushabti Bone – wet blending comes in handy here.
Step 6: Mix Ushabti bone and Screaming Skull 50/50 and continue to add lighter patches, they should be getting smaller each time. You might want to add some white in as well, depending on how light you want the skull to be. I only added a tiny bit to this stage, but neglected to take a picture.
Step 7: Mix 75/25 Rakarth flesh and XV-88 and start shading down the darker parts of the skull.
Step 8: Add a little more XV-88 to the mix and keep shading down those key areas in the design – refer to the picture as a guide as well, it is what it is there for after all.
Step 9: The final stage is to use black to define the eye sockets, the nose and to tidy up around the edges as well, seeing how this is on a near black backing.
My main points when doing freehand would be: don’t rush it, thin layers are always better, and have a picture to refer to as well!
The only thing I have freehanded in the last couple of years is the galaxy cloaks a lot of people know me for. I wanted to try my hand at it and seeing how I decided to put the flat panels on the Adeptus Titanicus Reaver, I thought I would give it a go.
Now, the Legio that Twitter voted on was Legio Mortis, so I had a look at the heraldry, cursed at the complexity of it and rolled up my sleeves.
I started by sketching the image out on the panel with a pencil very lighty. At this point, the princeps of the Reaver was asking, ‘Why can I see graphite.’
I then took a deep breath and got stuck in. I started off by filling in the black for the eyes and nose, as this seemed a good base. Next came the skull. I have been asked about painting bone and so shall be doing a tutorial on that next week. It is a combination of five colours and a lot of wet blending to make sure there are no glaring blend lines.
Next came the bars around the skull. I used Eshin grey as the base and then added black or white depending on which tone I was after. I then blended them together to create shadows and light and this is the result.
So, what do I think.
The cranium of the skull is a little too big, I think the teeth on the skull are a bit too stark and I know some of the grey rods are wonky.
Otherwise, I think I did alright in the end. Not bad for a first attempt in a couple of years. I will be doing similar again in the near future, got to keep practicing!
I picked this guy up from the games store because I thought he looked cool, not other reason than that. You have to be a bad ass to get away with weilding two axes at once after all.
So, I decided after putting him together – he was fine cast, there was a lot of swearing, some hot water reshaping and some further cursing, but I got it done with only one airbubble – that I would paint him like he was on the box. Green is not a colour I have done a lot with and I wanted to practice.
Here are the results:
I’ve taken some shots with different backgounds in the light box as I am still getting to grips with it.
Anyway, I am so pleased with the green blending on this. It worked out really well in the end I think. There are some spots where I think the gradient could be more gradual, but I was focusing on wet blending in this case – something I enjoy doing but feel I could use practice at. I learned a lot from him though and am pleased.
He is up for sale, so if you are interested in owning him, here’s the link:
Finally, I am able to post my thoughts and comments on painting this amazing miniature. You all get to find out who won and which mini belonged to who.
First off, congratulations to Office, who was entry A. He was judged the winner.
I’m going to post the pictures of my efforts again as a reminder and then talk about what I learned:
This is the first time I have done layered blending like this. I used a lot of thin, very thin, coats of paint to gradually build up the lighting on the ceramite. You can see it in the bottom picture clearly on his leg and shoulder. This counted on me knowing where the light hit the armour and was a challenge for me to make consistent over the entire mini. There are spaces where I could have been more consistent with it, but now I know how to do this, I can refine the technique when painting other miniatures to a higher standard.
I am exceptionally pleased with the lightning, I think that looks neat. The metallic bronze of his armour trim worked well too, though I am not convinced the game colour paints are as good as I first thought. I’m going to try a few others out and see if they are better.
The base of the miniature looks dark, which is something the judges have indicated to me in their feedback. I agree with them. The colours blend together and the detail is lost in this case. If I were to do this again, I would change the steps from silver to dirty bronze and maybe change the pipe colours as well.
This does not mean I am displeased with the result. This is by far the best miniature I have ever painted – that includes the multitude of Ahriman/Ahrimen and I’ve learned a great deal as well. It was a massively positive experience and I would do do again.
Sevatar is now going to go and cause some trouble in the cabinet with the Ultramarines along with a couple of his Night Lord buddies that I have also painted up.
This leaves me with one question. Office, Game for a rematch?
The Dark Angels Sergeant piled out of the Fire Raptor with his squad before the ramp had touched the ground. That none of the enemy had met them and tried to down the aircraft when it was vulnerable was unusual, but no matter. He would take the fight to them. The Night Lords were fools. Traitors. He would burn them out of their holes. He would show them the error of their ways. He would offer them no quarter, no mercy, no f-
The Dark Angels Sergeant was on his back, staring up into the void. He was dying. His helmet was gone, knocked off by the single clubbing blow that had left his throat a rattling ruin. Darkness surrounded his vision. A pallid, scarred face appeared in front of him, clad in armour the colour of midnight. As the last ragged breath slipped from his mouth this face bent low to his ear and whispered
I wanted to talk about these two lovely miniatures that I painted over Christmas. How they came about was rather strange in a way and I want to share it.
I will show the miniatures first and then tell of their tale.
The images are darker than I first thought but they will suffice for now. I have also never painted tartan before, so please don’t judge me too harshly.
I painted these for Graham McNeill – that is the McNeill tartan, or thereabouts at least, after a conversation on twitter. I have spoken to him a few times here and there and have always found our conversations to be encouraging and him to be exceptionally pleasant.
So, these two came around after a conversation that went a bit like this:
GMN: (after watching the Outlaw King) I want to write a high fantasy novel with loads of warring factions.
Me: Do it, that sounds amazing.
GMN: Alright, but you’re painting the miniatures to go with it.
Me: Deal, but I want a signed copy.
I am paraphrasing of course. My husband then suggested I should paint his tartan on the back and I am loathe to turn down a challenge. These two were selected and painted up and the result is for you all to see. Of course, these miniatures now belong to Graham McNeill; when we meet in person, I will hand them over. I am way too scared to ask for a place to send them, though the prospect of meeting someone you really look up to is also rather terrifying. I will have to try not to run away in a nervous fit of excited energy…
Anyway, I do not expect anything in return, the conversation was pretty tongue-in-cheek after all and I would never impose in that way. I am just pleased that it was remembered and brought some smiles about. I also got to paint some tartan, which was fun!
I’ve been a bit busy getting married these past few weeks and as such have not had a great deal of hobby time to get either writing or painting. The wedding was wonderful and the honeymoon a big pile of fun too. However, after recovering for a day, we did manage to get some hobby in to make up for it. While away, I was browsing Pinterest and saw an awesome effect on a cloak of a miniature and decided that I wanted to try and recreate it myself. Here are the results:
The effect of painting a galaxy on a cloak was a tricky one that involved creating a base of the swirling colours and then painting an awful lot of little dots over the top finishing off with some white ones. The colour of dots depended on which part of the cloak I was painting but I think it worked out well over all. I think I will be trying this technique again on psyker/librarian characters too. It’s just a shame that this heretic – Ahriman – will likely never see much play time.
The other model I have been painting was found at the Warboot at Element Games a few weeks ago (with a huge hangover no less) and was picked up with a friend who is some sort of demented chaos apothecary with Fabius Bile’s pack back. The Thousand Son miniature was already undercoated and having just finished the novel, I decided to paint him up all nice. He is a fine-cast miniature but let’s not hold that against him, he looks alright and I am sure he and Ahriman will be running off with all the cookies in the cabinet in some sort of heretic shenanigans.
Another I wanted to mention was sorting out the marines I had into squads. It was a job I have put off for a while but I finally got the time to sit down and get it done. I knew I had a lot of models and that they needed to be sorted – more so I know who belongs where and who gets what markings. Turns out I have enough for seven squads of a battle company and some Terminators, Dreadnoughts and Bikes (not assembled yet) for support. I also have other models that are not yet put together which will form the majority of the command unit too. Here they are, the Black Hands Second Company in all their ‘organised’ glory.
And finally, I have to mention one of the awesome gifts my husband and I received as a wedding present. We were given a lot of gifts and are exceptionally grateful for all of them. I feel this one needs a special blog mention though:
This is the first Guest Post I have featured on the blog and I have to admit this is rather exciting! The post had been written by Chris Frosin, whom I have mentioned before as being one of the most enthusiastic people I have met in recent times. Anyway, without any more waffle from me, here are his thoughts on returning to the hobby after an extended break!
It unfortunately doesn’t take much. Or maybe that’s fortunate, you can let me know by the end of this little post.
However, three weeks ago I met up with a friend of mine who I’d been meaning to catch up with for a while. It just so happened that the ‘catch up’ took place at Warhammer World where he was playing a small game of what I’d later realise was a new edition of Warhammer 40,000. Walking back in to an environment that I spent a lot of time in during my 20’s set my creative juices flowing again rather quickly and that certainly wasn’t ‘helped’ by the two guys I met nudging me to having a wander around the store there to see everything that had changed in the 12 years I’d been away.
Well, the models have certainly got even more gorgeous and the intricacies and details that I always loved to pick out have gotten even more precise and sharp. Unfortunately my beloved Tomb Kings seem to have been ‘killed’ off in a large explosion of some sort but seeing as they were playing 40k my mind was brought back to my small Necron force I pulled together all those years ago and a handful of Harlequins I’d converted. Now I love painting and converting so one of my first armies was what turned out to be a huge Ork force that I just kept adding and adding to; converted ork boyz everywhere, with a Land Raider based battlewagon, nobz with lightning claws and grots with guns they could hardly carry resting on their backs! If I was going to get sucked back in to the hobby I didn’t want to repeat that; but the sort of ‘been there done that’ feeling was satisfying enough that gradually throughout the evening watching Eldar PUMMEL (sorry hehe) the Space Marines into submission a plan of action was starting to form. Small numbers. I’d scanned the rulebook enough to see that I could form an elite force, maybe even a narrative army list based around fast attack detachments. Ultimately this would mean small numbers. But would I dig out the Death Jester and Shadow Seer models that I never face getting rid of, and do Harlequins again; the elite of elite, or my Necrons, an army that was more a couple of squads to test a colour scheme idea I had?
Then a further suggestion was thrown at me.
‘We’re having a game of Shadow War in a couple of weeks. Why don’t you get a Kill Team together for that and join in’
‘Errr… hell yeah!’
There was already a Harlequin player so maybe that wouldn’t be the best choice… and then I was shown these!
The Necron Tomb Blades and Annihilation Barge!
How. Cool. Are. They!
I was sold. I had to have Necrons again and fine tune my colour scheme to work with a vehicular based fast attack force for a new Dynasty! Mine! And it was going to be epic!
That week I headed in to my local store, had a browse around, checked out the new paints (which have tooootally different names to what I remember. Where’s Deadly Nightshade for instance?!?!) and picked up a box of Necron Immortals and the Shadow War rule book. I’d managed to find one rogue Necron warrior that somehow escaped the clear out all those years ago and that, with a little converting obviously, would be good enough to form the basis of a Kill Team.
And luckily one of the positives of my paint scheme is it’s rather quick to do.
What happened next sent me down an even more excited rabbit hole but I’ll save the story of bouncing around an amazing community on Twitter for the next post. Until then, here’s the first sneak peek of the Necron warrior that I dug out of the loft (attic if you’re from across the pond)
I’m not entirely sure what I am going to do with these guys. A lot of what I am painting has been bought second hand so I have had no real control over what they look like. I have no idea what his intentions were with these Marines I am currently painting. They see, to be a mishmash of different parts.
I think I will end up using them as veterans but I keep referring to them as Team Mental. No one wants to be on Team Mental, they’re all crazy…
They are fun to paint however and I will continue to keep at them, they’re not looking too shabby in my humble opinion.