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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Jailbirds WiP and Reaper BONES Kickstarter Undead Giant Colossal Skeleton WiP

Its a WiP kinda day.  Its been a hectic week mostly doing clean up and priming the Lulus from the TGG Kickstarter Wave 1.  All of the casts cleaned up quickly except the Butterfly Lulu.  It requires a lot of careful excavation of a large area that connects the bottom of her teddy bear toy to her cape fight in front.  There is also a tricky hand that is buried in a casting vent and has to be very carefully revealed. Its a great model anyway and is worth the effort!  I've gone with a White undercoat for this faction unlike for the Iron Empire.  I'm finding the black undercoat  made it difficult to see the detail.  The Jailbirds will be inevitably brighter than the Iron Empire and I'm still undecided about the way forward with the Kurganovas.

 Just in case you thought the Lulus were alone  There is a tree of metal One Shot Blondie and Mad Nurse Bernadette to keep them company.

The Jailbirds also get a different base treatment from the Iron Empire.  I think these came from Base X War but the site is closed making it hard to confirm.  These are some nice battle damaged streets and I'll have to get more as the project develops.

Finally comes the Undead Giant Colossal Skeleton from the Reaper Bones I Kickstarter.  This was pretty quickly done using Secret Weapon Sewer Water Wash over White Primer followed by two layers of drybrushing from the Reaper Bone Triad.  Vallejo Light Sand for ropes and bandages washed with Gryphonne Sepia from GW and then glazed with Ruby Red wash from Secret Weapon.  The stone Hammer is a concrete wash from Secret Weapon dry brushed with Reaper Grey Triad.  I experimented a bit more with GW technical paints for a glowing eye-socket effect but it initially looked a lot more like some weird jade colored sun shades!  I may still have to rework that a bit.

The biggest challenge with this model has been the very flexible nature of the Bones material.  the thing wobbles and shakes whenever its touched or picked up.  Gluing the hammer to the base helped a lot but the awkwardly extended left arm is highly mobile.  Might be a blessing in disguise since its bound to take impacts on the arm which just flexes out of the way.  Time will tell if droop is going to be an issue. It also did not take the primer gracefully and remained tacky for several days.  I'm currently working out a base for it and plan to try out that GW technical paint that cracks as it dries.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Tabletop World Merchant Goods

Lets just get this out of the way... Tabletop world makes great stuff!   Here is an example.  These are the 'Merchant Goods' package that I added to my order of the 'Merchant Shop'.  Wow!  its a really big assortment of highly detailed goods... the veggies, fruits, sausages and even fish can be identified quite clearly... no indistinct lumps here.

These, as is typical of my TTW experience so far, required zero clean up... I mean zero.  I washed these and went to painting them straight out of the box. Totally worth the price tag.  This is really a big deal for me as it dramatically reduced the time it took... imagine cleaning all these... hours for me anyway.  As it turns out it took just three sessions to knock out the whole set. 

I decided to approach these with washes over a white primer base as I've been struggling with paint thickness recently.  Here I did thin base coats of paint followed by layers of washes and a glaze here or there.
 A view of the goods together with the shop.  I'm anxious to do the cobblestone 'Town Square' and put it all up on a terrain board.  The Bevie will likely be subjected to a furious round of Mordheim in the near future!

... provided, of course, I locate the Mordheim minis.... DOH!

With the exception of the plums... which I inexplicably forgot to detail the stems and leaves... I spent a bit of time reveling in the detail of the individual elements.  I really like the corn cob colors and the fish... though the pumpkins  and cabbages also came out pretty well.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Hilda Von Stroheim and Volks Ayanami Rei 1/4 Bust

 The Ladies Hilda Von Stroheim from the Raging Heroes TGG Kickstarter shown here in primary and alternate builds.  A very imperious pose suitable for a Force Commander.

 This would make a good Death Korps of Krieg Artillery Commander 'counts as'  Gas mask and field telescope.

For my purposes the half cape is an element command insignia and might get color coded probably by changing the border color to match a unit type.  As usual these are mounted on Secret Weapon 'Trenchworks' series bases.  For this project I've added 1" washers to give the figures some weight and stability on the tabletop.

The capes are still plain pending unit construction.  Lots of room for Faction Icons and unit symbols but the structure of this set is still kind of in flux so I'll have to revisit those once I settle things a bit.

 The Helmetless head is awesome and very regal.  She'd also make a decent inquisitor come to think of it.  I'd always thought of the Heresey Suppression Force to be a Sisters of Battle based formation  but I'm starting to like the pageantry of the Iron Empire for Inquisition Shock Troops.
 Intolerance personified!
 The two heads allow for good positioning that rotates the front focus of the miniature making them look more unique.
Finally the Volks Ayamani Rei 1/4 bust.  We picked this up for a great price at the Mandarake in Akiba on the last trip out there.  I had some trouble cleaning mold release residue and will have to try out the Volks resin cleaner on the next big kit.  I has a lot of fun with the eyes and can start adding Anime style eyes to other projects now that I'm familiar with the structure.

She's all one massive piece but needed significant filling due to a really deep mold line seam.  Still she was fun to work on and will make a great centerpiece on our Evangelion display shelf.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Iron Empire line up

Just a quick post about sizes.  I'm still sorting through boxes so have no Imperial Guard or regular Space Marines to compare so here is a line up with Eldrad, Jinx, Drusilla, FW Death Guard Terminator, and Mortaria. 

I'll do more apples to apples comparisons as I unpack.

Sky Captain Drusilla and Ayanami Rei WiP

Sky Captain Drusilla is the Kickstarter only commander of the Iron Empire's Jet Girls.  I wanted to maintain the IE color scheme but lean towards a Rocketeer style look.  To this end I went with raw leather flight harness, gloves, boots, and mask/cap.

 I really like the retro sci-fi style of this model.

While painting I opted for a darker sepia color for shading but think I'll go back to a lighter shade for the rest of the set as the sepia tended more into brown than into yellow and is a bit too much contrast.

I may go back and add some powder work around the flight stem and on the base but I'd like to do the unit all together for that.  I'm also still pondering adding some faction/unit markings to the flight harness and/or mask.
Here is Drusilla next to a 1/4 scale Ayanami Rei.  Rei is coming along a bit more slowly than I had anticipated mostly due to additional drying and layers needed to get even coverage over large areas.  She's close but it will be a couple more days before she can join the rest of the cast in the Living Room display case.

We've been a bit amok collecting Anime Figure Models and have to rotate them to get good displays.  At the moment we're running small Evangelion, Madoka Magika, Steins Gate, Lucky Star, and K-ON displays.  We usually have 4 full curios running but for this move we're just running one curio and two built in half curios.  I'd like to get Soul Eater up but those are still lost in the big room of boxes.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Iron Empire mascot - Jinx

Today is a short update featuring just Jinx.

 Jinx is one of the TGG Kickstarter Mascots.  An Egyptian themed cat with a lot of attitude.

Its larger than a house cat more like a Jaguar in scale though all the harness and jewelry give it a strangely jackal-esqe feel.

This was tough over a black primer and I think I'll do the display version with washes over white
Jinx is shown here with Mortaria for Scale.  Shes rockin' her Zombie Sniper Motif.  They'd make a great team!

Jinx is here with a WiP Sky Captain Drusillia.  Dru is going through washes and re-layers at the moment but should be ready to roll in a day or so.  The 1/4 Ayanami Rei is also making progress so if a get a good block of work in she might roll out as well.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Tabletop World Cottage

 Today is the first of a pair of cottages from Tabletop World.  I'd have normally painted them together but... its getting done as they are located in the big pile of boxes!

This residence is a single room but has a lot of windows including a fancy one in the roof line.

I've stuck with the warm fire lit windows but am still experimenting with the method.  This was a simpler application than the one I used on the Merchant Shop but seems to give a little less depth.
 As usual a fully detailed and accessible interior.  I like the peaked roofs which make it possible to have minis that are a bit taller, or monstrous, concealed within!
 The roof of this one is an earth brown reflecting its status as a common residence.  A combination of dry-brushing and washes helped add a little definition to areas of similar color.
 I located my weathering powders for this cottage using them on the earth colored base strip, mud splattered lower  stones, and adding some light green for mossy effects.  I'll likely go back and add similar weathering to the Merchant Shop. 
I experimented a bit with the GW technical rust and corrosion paints and am making slow progress with them.  I do like these for the bit of texture they add but its easy to over do it.

On the table later today are a couple more figures from Raging Heroes and the 1/4 scale bust of Ayanami Rei from Evangelion. 

Friday, September 12, 2014

Vera Krabbenhoft - Iron Empire Standard

 Vera Krabbenhoft is the faction Standard bearer for the Iron Empire of Raging Heroes "Toughest Girls in the Galaxy" Kickstarter. 

Here are the regular (Helmed) and alternate heads.  The alternate head still features a respirator mask which maintains the infection theme.  They'd also be a good Death Korps of Krieg proxy.   I'm hoping to get some more info on the TGG factions from RH I'm very interested in what their game project will look like.  Hopefully we'll get a bit more of that sort of thing from the art book, when it ships, or some kind of sneak preview about the future game.

This batch is table top quality intended for gaming use.  I also signed up for the Connoisseur package that renders all the girls in hand poured resin which I'll paint to a higher standard and base for display.

The eNV faction for our Serene Dawn RPG setting got a little more detailed with the addition of the very abstract ankh shown on these flags.  This symbol will be incorporated into the Corp logo as well as its use in this table top army. 

The flags at the moment just have the main faction logo on them.  As I build the force up I'll add unit designations to the flags and there is a lot of room remaining for battle honors.

I like the Grey armor and cream uniform colors.  The purple is a spot color and will be used mostly for special characters etc...  regular troopers won't have the cape, or the body suit that was featured on the sniper, so will have the purple limited to masks and trim items.

The background fluff is coming along and I'll start putting some of that up with the idea to create a Warzone: X style document and Codex: X equivalents for the unique factions for those who are interested in our games.  


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Tabletop World Merchant Shop

 I unpacked the Merchant's Shop that I picked up just before the big move earlier this year.  It was already primed so I couldn't resist painting it up.

I went with the blue roof to underscore the building is commercial, or official, in nature as opposed to a regular residence.  I'm thinking that cottages and hovels will have an earth tone, or thatch/bleached shingle, roof while townhouses will tend towards terracotta or a red brown.  Its just a working idea at this point.

I also picked up the Merchant's goods package... which looks amazing so I'll have to revisit the shop photos once I paint those up!
 This was a good platform to practice some effects like lighted windows and corrosion.  The windows are meant to convey the idea of firelight or candlelight.... but I did the effect from both sides...oops!  I'll have to think about what sunlight would look like on translucent panes.
 Most of the stone was grey and dry-brushed up.  Corner and border stones got an extra brush up of light sand and the hard paving stones, window caps/sills, and the chimney cap were based light sand and washed with sepia.
 Wood was (Flames of War) German light brown camouflage washed with (Army Painter) Light Quickshade Ink.  Metals were based dark grey then brushed with (Fantasy Forest) Rustungs Farbe (a silvery metallic) and washed with sepia then edge highlighted sparingly with Rustungs Farbe.
 I love the fully detailed interiors which will be great for Mordheim or regular RPG use.
 The shop has two fully accessible levels. 
 Here you can see the difference in stone color between general wall stones and harder border stones.
 The fire lit windows were dry-brushed light sand then washed with (Secret Weapon) Yellow Snow then back-filled round the edges with (Vallejo) Scrofulous Brown... a really useful color that I think was discontinued some time ago.
 The interior detail extends to the inside of the roof.  I painted it but I'm not sure when it would ever be seen in any use of the building that I can envision... still... its cool so I painted it anyway!
Playing around with the GW technical paints for the green patina.  I'm still not really sold on this approach but will continue to experiment.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Mortaria Noctis

 For the first stab at painting a mini in five months I worked on the iconic sniper, and self described "Hit-Woman" , Mortaria Noctis.

A lot of bad habits I developed over the years painting GW figures came back to bite me on this project.  Techniques that work really well on very deeply inscribed detail are not as effective on the RH sculpts so I', going to have to get back up to speed on regular painting.  Fortunately I've a couple of iterations of this one so I'll be able to track my progress.
This version sports the alternate head but the next one will have the death mask. 
 The color scheme is was developed for the eNV Corp operatives from the Serene Dawn setting.  I'm going to use it with some modification for the Iron Empire troops who will be used primarily as a Mechanicum flavored Astra Militarum force that has been fighting both the other TGG factions (Kurganova and Jailbird) and has only recently rediscovered by the universe at large.  They have infected with a weaponized disease by Contagion (a Death Guard Based Warband and system wide nemesis for all the factions) and have responded with dark, forgotten, science and an unhealthy obsession with Mortuary cults.