Archive | February 2015

Dungeon Population Growth

I have managed to find a bit of time and so have managed to finish a few minis.

First, we have Jolie finished.

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

I did a bit of shading and sculpted the base as shown WIP below.  If nothing else, it shows just how hard it is to get a good picture of this shade of yellow.

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

Next, I have managed to finish the Dark Spawn cultist and minion.  I went with a un-dyed fabric look as I felt it looks pretty sinister.  Especially with the stains of blood.

Darkspawn Cultist and Minion by Reaper Miniatures

Darkspawn Cultist and Minion by Reaper Miniatures

Darkspawn Cultist and Minion by Reaper Miniatures

Darkspawn Cultist and Minion by Reaper Miniatures

Next we have a couple of Bones miniatures.  These are the vinyl miniatures made by Reaper, mostly recasting existing minis in the new medium.

Spider Swarm by Reaper Miniatures

Spider Swarm by Reaper Miniatures

Beetle Swarm by Reaper Miniatures

Beetle Swarm by Reaper Miniatures

Although not that difficult to paint, the effect of carpets of bugs is tough to beat.

Finally, to wrap it up the obligatory action shot:

Jolie Female Scribe, Spider Swarm, Beetle Swarm, Darkspawn Cultist and Minion by Reaper Miniatures.  Hayden by Hassle Free Miniatures.  Dwarf warrior by Games Workshop.

Jolie Female Scribe, Spider Swarm, Beetle Swarm, Darkspawn Cultist and Minion by Reaper Miniatures. Hayden by Hassle Free Miniatures. Dwarf warrior by Games Workshop.

A brief update with lots of pictures, but hopefully no less inspirational.  If nothing else, I recommend trying out some new colour combos.

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Turn the Page…

Yes, I know there are those who will quickly ramble on about Bob Seger vs Metallica on this song.  There are also those who will remember the lawsuit versus Napster.  For the younger readers who have no idea, here’s a link:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DuRVp3S2Gc

Anyhow, the title does give a good intro to a bit of work I managed to do this afternoon.  Mainly, turning this:

Books.  Ok, not yet.

Books. Ok, not yet.

Into this:

Bookcase from Hirst Arts casting and wood wrapped in thin card.

Bookcase from Hirst Arts casting and wood wrapped in thin card.

Bookcase from Hirst Arts casting and wood wrapped in thin card.

Bookcase from Hirst Arts casting and wood wrapped in thin card.

I did a very quick bit of work today while watching an old television series.  The card was simply measured and cut for each book and the height and length varied a bit for each book.  Wider books are simply more wood wrapped by the card.  I quickly painted the card and the uneven drying gave the worn leather look of old books.  A few mixed colours and viola…a pretty snazzy looking bookcase.

But, don’t take my word for it, we have a testimonial from a miniature bookworm:

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures.  Bookcase and Table from Hirst Arts casting.  Books made from wood wrapped in thin card.

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures. Bookcase and Table from Hirst Arts casting. Books made from wood wrapped in thin card.

The pile of “books” I had before gave me this shelf with more to spare so I am more confident in being able to get these bookshelves finished relatively quickly.  That will mean I will have no excuse not to finish painting the library module to put them in.

Another quick update today, but hopefully something inspired you.

Painting Works in Progress

I have had a bit of time so I grabbed my brush and remembered which end goes where.

I have done most of the work on a single miniature so far but I have a couple others who got a bit of attention.

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

The photos aren’t my best work, but the miniature isn’t finished yet either.  So maybe a bit out of focus will help to hide the faults right now.  I have done some make-up on her, and I am happy with how the eye-shadow turned out.  Her boots need to be finished, her hair needs an ink wash, and her belt will get toned down a few shades before I call the brush work done.  Maybe a bit of dust and or dirt too.  Ok, the pupil-less eyes are a bit freaky too.  I am also intending to do some work with green-stuff to give her a textured base to match the dungeon tiles.

Something I learned through trial and error vice examples was layering and wet-blending.  Now, I have stumbled across these things and realized I have my own methods to make them work.  There is a whole school of thought on wet-blending directly on the model and others who use a wet palette.  Personally, I prefer to blend on the model.  I also cheat whenever possible.

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

Jolie Female Scribe by Reaper Miniatures

As the early WIP picture shows, I started with a darker shade of dress.  In fact it started darker than this.  What is visible here is the patchiness and smooth transitions.  This is achieved by my cheating wet-blend: I use multiple layers of thinned down paint over uncured paint layers.  Smooth brushing actually changes the pigments and if carefully done can allow transitions from deep (darker) areas to higher (brighter) areas.  Effectively, the paint blends with the previous layers by rehydrating the paint and allowing me to cheat and wet-blend over the course of a day instead of one marathon session.

I know the results aren’t quite as effective as true wet-blending, but for natural looking folds I think it works well.  For me to dedicate true wet-blending it needs to be something special like my Rackham Unicorn (buried away somewhere) or a special miniature with a lot of flesh since the only good way to get natural looking shadows on skin is real wet-blending.  It also seems to give a good effect with my Darkspawn cultists below.  But, to be fair I did more work with washes and glazes than wet-blending on these guys.

Darkspawn Cultist and Minion by Reaper Miniatures

Darkspawn Cultist and Minion by Reaper Miniatures

These too are in the WIP stage, I will make the tentacles fade to a lighter purple/blue at the tips and I intend to make the robes an unwashed linen colour…well under the mud and blood that is what it will be.  Obviously the various blades and hooks will get a rust wash and gore treatment.

Hopefully something inspired you today, if nothing else to try some silly mixing to get the right shade you want.

Half-Timber Homes Mark III

Although I have been quite busy the past little while, I have found the time to do a bit more work on the half-timber houses.  In Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs I think the little miniatures can say they are past the first few stages as they have shelter now.  More specifically, they have a more realistic roof over their heads.

Half-timber row houses.  Built from foamcore and thin card.

Half-timber row houses. Built from foamcore and thin card.

I went for the time consuming but more realistic approach for roofing of random cuts of strips of shingles.  As shown here, the strips were cut then over-lain from the bottom up.  The complex overlapping corners got a bit of TLC to provide some details.

Half-timber row houses.  Built from foamcore and thin card.

Half-timber row houses. Built from foamcore and thin card.

Once these first two roofs were done, a bit of paint got thrown around.  This is just the initial stages.  A base coat of brown followed by dry-brush of grey to give the weathered wood look.  They will get a dark brown wash to finish the effect.

Half-timber row houses.  Built from foamcore and thin card.

Half-timber row houses. Built from foamcore and thin card.

Half-timber row houses.  Built from foamcore and thin card.

Half-timber row houses. Built from foamcore and thin card.

Half-timber row houses.  Built from foamcore and thin card.

Half-timber row houses. Built from foamcore and thin card.

The more astute readers will have noticed I gave the wooden doors a wash too.  Again, they will be finished by another dark brown wash once everything is dry.

Slowly but surely this project is nearing completion.  The only question for me now, is if I want to base them.  The base isn’t needed as this is a very sturdy structure.  The base would give two benefits.  First it would let me do some more dressing up.  For example: adding tables, rain barrels, and signs.  Second, it would let me provide a clear border with cobblestones and the like so it would better blend into most tables.  The flip side of that is if I do a city scape, then they won’t be able to be used unless I carefully plan how to make them modular for such a city.

Not a pressing concern as I have plenty of hours of cutting shingles to ponder this.

Hopefully something inspired you today, if nothing else to do the mind-numbing tasks that add flair to a project.  Remember, 15 pieces of flair is the minimum.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cg-6wbETtbo