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Sunday, January 29, 2012

Spirits of Vengeance and a Lost Love

 Something vengeful this way comes...  Malifaux is a wonderful back drop for painting themes.  To be fair I love all the Steampunk styles but I especially love tales of tragic loss and hopeless battles for hollow victories.  The Spirits of Vengeance crew from the Resurrectionist faction fit the bill nicely.
 The Ikiryo here is pictured rising from a pool filled with the guilty eyes of oppressors and exploiters.  I imagine this spirit collecting them from its victims and returning them to its spiritual realm for some unknown, but certainly dread, purpose.
 The eyes began as little ovals of liquid greenstuff built up in 2 or three layers on the bottom of the standard 30mm round lip base.  They were then painted as bloodshot eyes and buried in a couple of layers of water effects.
 The ablative Seishin are great little Chinese Dragons wafting across the field of carnage.  After painting these it was brought to my attention that I could have as many as five of them on the table so... four more are on the way!
And what tale of regret would be complete without Lost Love?  This one, as with the other members of this crew,  was inspired by the cover art.  This is because I wanted to get a handle on the atmospherics and style of the setting which is different to the GW settings I've been largely buried in for decades.  I think I've got enough of a handle on it to branch out a bit now.

One of the issues I see with Malifaux is the specificity of the models in a crew.  Its a strength in the sense that so few models are required for a game but then there are so few models available so there is not a lot of variation between the crews of any given player.  I'd like to see rules for homebrew crews and a more extensive background of crews that have not yet been developed as miniatures so there would be more room for experimentation.  For example I painted up a crew based on the Wizard of Oz that I'd love to be able to include in a game. 

Perhaps as I get more familiar with the rule set I'll be able to accommodate flights of fancy.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Malifaux Spirits of Vengeance WiP

 Today I worked on a Malifaux Resurrectionist crew based on the Spirits of Vengeance.  I really like the feel of these angry ghosts and they'll be a fun diversion from the Dark Eldar horde I've been focusing on lately.

I'm trying a new wood technique.  Its a synthetic iron oxide gel.  Applied over white it gives a warm feeling.  I've done one coat and then re-coated the recesses of the grain.  I think two general coats would have gotten the same result.  There is no other shading or highlighting done so far, and it looks pretty good as is, but I'm anticipating some edge highlights.
 The dark earthen areas on the bases will get revisited with weathering powders as the final step.

One of the spirits will be based entirely in water filled with eyeballs...yuuuck!
 I'm trying out some Blasted Swamp bases from Secret Weapon.  They are standard 25mm bases a la GW but have recessed surfaces that allow for water effects to almost the same depth as the new 30mm round-lip styles.  These will be used on the Court of the Archon for my Blood Rain Kabal.  I've based all the newer models for the Kabal in a  watery swamp style so it should be a good fit.  The regular bases take a lot of work to get a believable depth of water effect so ... we'll see how it goes!
As you can see the desk is pretty chaotic!  The Malifaux crew is getting worked on at the same time as the Court of the Archon... and old fashioned bulk job but with a lot of experimentation added in..

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Dark Eldar Tantalus joins the Kabal

 The Tantalus joins the Blood Rain Kabal today.  There remains only the naming but that is true of the rest of the fleet as well.  The sail has the Kabal rune as well as the campaign badge from the Chaos Gate Campaign which this vehicle did not actually fight in.... someone in accounting is certain to take issue!

 The sail itself turned out to have a wrinkle in one of the spars that was smoothed out via the warm water method but returned, albeit to a lesser degree, after the painting was completed.  The sail is removable so I may end up making a modification to correct the defect .

The lower Blade Vanes are so low that I had to use the tallest flight base stem and tilt the vehicle  back from level to avoid scraping the tabletop.

Speaking of bases... the Kerr and King 60mm weighted Flight Base is performing well.  The order time from the UK was around a week and while drilling the hole for the flight stem I struck one of the weights which appear to be a non ferrous metal.  They really are heavy and the model is surprisingly stable in spite of the size and distribution of its mass.  One potential issue is that the model and the base are both heavy enough to place stress on the standard plastic stem that holds them together.  Its a bit like a dumbell joined by a straw.  We'll see how it holds up to moving but I am expecting to have to remount the stem at some point ans possibly replace it with something more durable.

Moving the model on the tabletop will be difficult at best.  It is quite large, there are few points of purchase, the forward Blade Vanes have little clearance making any sort of terrain a bit dicey due to the great length of the model, and the rudder has even less clearance due the the tilt.

It is a beautiful model and will spend a lot of time in a display case alongside the Reaper.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


I started reviewing my Ogre Kingdoms Army so I can make some new additions in a similar style.

I realized that I'd actually done the army as an experiment.  Normally I paint with the idea that I want to minimize/eliminate brush strokes.  For this particular project I actually exaggerated the brush strokes to achieve texturing effects.  Additionally the Army has very little dry brushing although there are a few cases of heavy wet brushing where, again, the brush strokes are exaggerated for effect.  I painted this almost entirely at my local game shop and the cry OGRE PANTS! rang out often.. in part a reference to the pirate themed trousers sported by most of the army and in part just because it was fun (and very Ogre-ish) to bellow!

The Ninja Maneater shows these  exaggerated brush strokes clearly on the skin which was built up stroke by stroke from a base color called Stein Grun which is a mossy green.  The layered effect makes the whole skin seem exceptionally dirty and greasy without losing definition or illumination.

The Gnoblar contingents are swathed in a truly ridiculous quantity of bandages... the price the pay for being in close quarters with the Ogres... and with the other Gnoblars!

 Since the whole project was silly for the sake of being silly I added an Ogre Champion from the old Battle Masters game as a Maneater.  Hes a little more broad that the regular ogres but sits in the Army nicely. The belly plate shows that brush work again as do the skin and metals of these variously equipped Bulls.

 Everybody conga!  Indeed it is a good thing that most armies don't include a lot of Gorgers just because the very dynamic pose of these metal monstrosities is tricky to modify and thus we have the Gorger Chorus Line.  On the bright side the pale, streaky, layered, skin looks convincingly translucent.

 The Hunter was fun and I really enjoyed the cats.  I took a sort of part hyena.. part Jaguar approach and was happy with the result although.. as pat of the experiment they are a FAIL! since they are a smooth work up without the crazy brush thing.  Thats all right though I still like 'em!

 OGRE PANTS!  Here is a great example of the pirated trousers!  Even though all the trousers are individuals the colors are from a defined palette so they look like they belong together even though they are all different.  These are by design VERY cartoony and the Ogres seem to keep their trousers meticulously cleaned even though none of their other equipment/belongings are afforded the same care! 
There must be a powerful contingent of laundry Gnoblars working feverishly to keep up!

 The standard bearers clearly show the brush layers on their skin.  The pattern on the backs developed over the course of time and as it evolved it improved.  Some of the early efforts produced effects that were clearly ill defined brush marks but when I got it right the striping looked a lot less like a brush marks and more like low contrast zebra or tiger stripes.
 The standard bearer on the right with the purple and yellow trousers shows the evolving stripes.
 Boss!  This is the Bruiser from the Boxed Army and stands in as my generic tyrant if none of the Big Names are available to rumble.  Gotta be secure in yer manhood to wear those trousers!  Wood grain on the various weapon hand grips was painted in the same fashion as the skin except that more of an effort to look like wood grains was made!
 Matronly Maneater!  here the wet brush was used on the rolling pin which looks sort of moldy or slimy... disgusting!
Finally the Yhetees!  More competitors for "So You Think You can Dance"  still better than the Gorgers!

Thanks for bearing with the review!  I'm now in the right frame of mind to attack the new models.  I think I can work out something that gets the best parts of this effect with less time investment.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Dark Eldar Tantalus Structures WiP

 Back from the Holidays for a bit.  Starting with a shot of where I've ended up at the end of work today.  As you can see the primary hull is together.  The red has been brightened up to the same level as the rest of the fleet.

The provided flight stand does not fit snugly into the slot which is OK since the stand seems a bit small for a model of this size and weight.  I've decided to  go with a weighted base from Kerr & King.  These bases are 60mm so will be the same size but I'm hoping it'll be a bit more stable.  I'm concerned about the height once the poop deck is added in terms of fitting it into a foam tray!  I think it'll be OK but it may be a close run thing.

The Brass decking is very interesting.  It sits very close on top of the engine details making me think that, perhaps, the similarity in color between the engine compartment and the deck surface  is less than ideal... especially considering that the second tier of decking sits about a quarter of an inch above a large part of the first deck!  In retrospect I might have considered a very dark engine detail with very bright point source lighting under the deck.

The schedule for the early part of the year is kur-aaaa-zeee! So I'll have to be extra disciplined to get anything done.