Sunday, 29 March 2015

Space Marine Completed

Another piece for the finished area of my workstation.
I have found this quiet fun to paint. It is the first time I have done one of these, lets face it there are thousands out there, so I had to find out what I was missing.

The texture of the armour. being smooth, lends itself to glazing very nicely. This also gave me a great excuse to practise my NMM steel and gold some more. I feel like its starting to get there.

Furthermore, my first red NMM armour. I'm fairly pleased with the result but there are some things I would like to get better with.
This was my one cock up. I managed to scuff the paint off the white arrow design on the shoulder, I have no idea how, I just found the paint removed !
Try as I may to correct this it has not gone that well.

Overall though I am pleased.
I have also tried out a different method of photography. I do feel a bit happier with this.There is no base done as I have an idea. With four of these to paint I fancy doing a different colour for each, set them on a round plinth with them looking outwards. To their back will be a standard of some sort to depict a story of them defending this to the last.
But for now that will take a back burner, I am itching to start work on Glottkin and there may also be something to paint for The One Ring April challenge.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Berserker Complete

When I first saw this sculpt I knew it had to be running through a stream, it just seemed the perfect way to capture the excellent pose.
I have tried a couple of things out with this figure, like the tattoos which to be honest I have not done very well. That is something for me to think about for the future.
I have also worked the weathering on him so he looks more authentic.
I tried out a new technique called cross hatching on the inside of the cloak. This is simply lots of fine lines and dots to resemble wear and tear on material. The photo does not do it justice as it has worked a dream. 

I want to thank Bennett for giving me the chance to paint such a wonderful figure. I truly hope you have a fantastic future ahead of you.

Monday, 23 March 2015

Space Marine

My first folly into this realm.
I was given four of these a while back and wanted to try them out as something different. I have seen so many of these in their varying forms that were ones I could not avoid.
The first thing that got me is that for a 28mm figure, they are quiet bulky, making them appear bigger than they are.
The next thing was the smoothness of the armour, very smooth.
This, I believe, will respond well to some steady glazing to extenuate the contrast. I also wanted to try red NMM armour. Simply to try what I have seen so many do with this figures.

As you can see above, I have done the helmet and I can give a cheer to say this photo is a lot closer reality for once although the helmet is a tint too orange to real life.
I am happy so far. As I thought the armour is responding well to glazing and the slow and steady building of layers.
My plan is to replicate the red NMM armour across the figure and things like the edging to the shoulder pads will be NMM gold.
I haven't decided on the gun yet and there is a jet pack to fit to the back.
The emblem of the chest and the shoulder motifs could end up white but I will see how I feel it goes.

Friday, 20 March 2015

Da Vinci Brushes Review

Da Vinci are a German company providing high quality Kolinsky Sable brushes for artists. They have produced a range aimed at miniature painters.
I took delivery of these brushes a few weeks ago and as I have documented my life has been very busy. However I have been using these since the beginning of February and feel I am now in a position to offer a valid review having given them a thorough testing.

As you can see below, they arrived nicely packaged.

What hit me first is how thin the brush heads were. I am used to W&N Series 7 which have a thick head, but that was not the case here.
To start with, the brushes are made from pure Kolinsky Red Sable hair from selected male winter tails. The wooden handles are nicely shaped, not overly long or too short and sit comfortably in the hand. 
My initial thoughts were, wow, excellent for spot detail like eyes but will the brush have the strength for things like glazing were the side of the brush is used more.

So to the brushes themselves. I think this picture gives you an idea of how thin they are. The point is so tight you could almost stab yourself with it.
From left to right the sizes are
10/0 - brilliant for detail, fine lines and pupils
0 - Workhorse brush, slightly larger areas
0 Short - Stippling
00 - Detail brush
1- Work horse and brilliant all rounder

As you can see there are two I regard as work horse brushes. To be honest there is very little difference between them and if budget was an issue I would opt for Size 1

I took this as a comparison to W&N Series 7 Size 0 which is the one on the right. On the left is the Da Vince Size 1
The difference is clear.

So how did these brushes fair up under usage.
Now bear with me here while I explain some of my techniques. 
I like to apply glazes, something I am using more and more, gone are the days of using washes to fill in colour, I glaze, glaze and glaze. This involves tiny quantities of paint on the brush and slow building up the layers and the contrast.
With that in mind, here is the first advantage I found over the famous W&N Series 7
To glaze you need very little paint on the brush and I tended to struggle with Series 7. I cannot say that I have the same issue here. You cannot have loads of paint on the brushes anyway, they do not have enough sable but I have found my glazing work is progressing since using these brushes.
My second thing is the strength of the brush, does it hold up to using the side of the brush ?
In a nutshell yes it does. They work wonderful, not quiet the strength of Series 7 but certainly more than good enough for the task in hand.
Lets face it, a brush should only kiss the surface of the figure, so you should never use pressure.

Several weeks later and how are they holding up.
Very nicely if I sat so myself. I always was my brush at the end of a session and roll the tip in some brush soap to hold the tip in place.
I can honestly say I have not had an issue.

Time will tell if they have the longevity of Series 7 but these brushes are a serious contender to their crown and deserve a chance. I have given them some use, particularly the work horse brushes and both and standing strong.

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Berserker Update

Heres a brief update of where I am.
Still feeling my way around this figure, trying to get a look I am happy with and i think I am getting there.
I recently got a tip about saturated and desaturated colour and I have decided to use that here.
The idea is you use toned down colours and then put something bright in to make it pop and give appeal to the figure.
I am aiming for the axe head to provide the pop by working the NMM.
Unfortunately these photos are not telling the right story as they are over exposed, but I hope it goes you the idea.

I also intend to incorporate freehand into every figure I paint from this point forward. Here I have applied a couple of tattoos, one on the shoulder and one on the belly. Once again the photo has not shown these as they are.
I'm hoping for a good day tomorrow where I could finish the painting, just the leather, inner cloak and some tidying up to do.
There will also be some weathering on this battle hardened bloke.
The base I already have in preparation. I believe this will set the pose off very well but more on that later.

Tuesday, 17 March 2015


I have been sent this wonderful sculpt by a young lad in Germany, Bennett. He is a mere 16 years old and has produced this wonderful sculpt. Very original, well thought out and something I wanted to paint.
To my delight he chose me to paint it for him.

Here he is so far, very much a WIP.
I am slowly getting the feel for this figure. So far I have been sketching about with my paints to get the feel I think is fitting.
Initially I went for a lighter skin tone but have changed this to a slightly bronzed skin tone. A bare chested warrior would surely have a decent tan?
I'm not 100% on the wolfskin though it is by no way finished. I am fancying a grey wolf but I think this will be undertones with dark browns.
Who knows I may change my mind but it will be interesting for me to see how this works out.
And a final thought to young Bennett, without whose great work we would be missing this adventure I painted the first Bennett sculpt...
Thanks my young mate.

Monday, 16 March 2015

Gokan Completed

I can finally say that Gokan is completed.
This has been a great figure to work on on many fronts, primarily for me I believe the 54mm size seems to suit me better than 28mm. It is my first 54mm so maybe I will need to do a few more before I am certain.
Back to Gokan and he really was a first in many areas, non LoTR, NMM steel - two types, NMM gold 2nd attempt, juweela bricks and pigments.

Please vote on CMON 

Thursday, 12 March 2015

Gokan - Painting Finished

After weeks of DIY were I feel like Ive rebuilt the house, I have been able to get back to some painting.
I can at last say that Gokan is finished on the painting front, just the base to do.

The photo is poor but I will look to getting some better ones for when this is completed.

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

The Glottkin

Life does tend to catch up with you. I may have been quiet on here lately but that is purely down to life and having to sort many other things before hobby time kicks in.
However I have not stopped altogether and continue to spread my interest in my line of products.
With that in mind I present my latest acquisition The Glottkin.
I was exploring the GW shop recently looking for something to test me and I found this beast. There is simply loads to do and new areas for me to explore.
I have never used my airbrush for starters, which I will definately need to get to grips with this.

As you can see, there are one or two parts to piece together, work the join and leave a smooth finish.
The scale is big, if you look I have placed a LotR Orc between the two sprues to allow a size comparison.

As eager as I am to get cracking on this, I have other things to do. Gokan requires finishing, I have another special figure to work on, plus a review on Da Vinci paint brushes.
And that is before I look to further things that I have on the distant horizon.
All in all then, interesting times ahead.