So the heatwave passed and was replaced by relentless rain. Not a problem as i needed to re adjust my work times and planning regarding commissions so now i can do just that.
Starting with i knocked out this 10mm martians commission for Dave and i had a blast doing them. They may be the most finicky models i've ever assembled and i do think they could be improved massively but the finished look is just great and i really enjoy them now that they're done. Gentle handling will be the key to enjoying these long term for my client. As per the new landing page gallery plan i've concocted i took some war of the worlds shots.
In an effort to spark creative inspiration i finished my tmnt models from brother vini and took a shot with them to, as the robots seem to suit the tmnt style perfect.
I have also been working on the valhallans but since the color scheme is very similar to before i shan't publically keep sharing lots of pics of these, i shall instead wait a few weeks until the total order is complete and i can knock out one big photography afternoon at once.
Dungeons and dragons infantry work, more valhallans and tanks, necromunda and infinity. Lots to come!
I spent most of yesterday moving my work desk and studio in my home into a spare room and making therefore a better place to work undistracted. I finished this trolls weapon promptly today and i like the outcome but i fear it may be off kilter with my clients idea. I shall ask him for notes. it is definitely brutal and definitely unique.
I also popped the final highlights on these troopers for bram and i'm excited to get on with the pasty fluffy snow basing. I may do a little photo tutorial but my technique is really just pva with bicarb and white paint. Pretty simple but a great finish.
These orcs have been a joy from start to end. Their strange color scheme was wonderfully fun and the red flowers on the bases just add that cute little finishing pop of contrast that i love. I looked at the inspiration pic this morning and noticed i'd ended up with a slightly more blue tone on the skin but the specific turquoise blue tone was a bit more difficult and i do know that i was aiming that way, so with that in mind i'm still proud of the outcome.
I set up a new permanent photo booth this week and i thought i'd get some better pics of those spray painted trolls. I am still in love with the outcome, i can't get over how natural and real it looks.
I had constant trouble getting a pre existing break on the troll chieftan weapon to stay glued. I tried some gentle dremel work to re set the pummel but it wouldn't hold. I spoke to my client and i was told to aim for a hammer or club if i was to convert an alternative. I dug around in my bits box thinking i had some ogre kingdoms weapons but i couldn't find them. I decided to use some poundland skeleton ax heads and make a brutal ax. The main advantage of this conversion is that it weighs nothing at all, so it pins very securely and shouldn't break. I am however to hear from my client and i image it might be a bit to axe-ish. Luckilly it's easy to remove if it's not his cup of tea but i will forge on and paint it today and then i can get a proper opinion from my client. I have the utmost confidence that it's going to look brutally aproppriate when it's done.
Tonight i was bitten by the creative inspiration bug. I am to send back Johns work tomorrow and i thought that before i do i should take some fancy pictures of the models in "action" and the results are great. It has inspired me to start making terrain again as i tend to struggle to find a reason as a non gamer. I hope to do this in some way for all of my future orders, so that the landing page of the website can be more colorful and creative. You can go to any painters website and see picture after picture on a white or black background so now i've got my own little "portfolio" style for the landing page. Definitely more engaging.
The uk has been hit with a massive heat wave. It's lasted about two weeks and since i work and live underground it's been particularly difficult to work in the heat. Due to this my mental health got a bit down and i struggled to paint at all. Luckilly my bulk of remaining work at the moment is with one of my most patient and kindly understanding of clients Bram (who is also a creative genius by the way). I have spoken to bram and i'm glad to have finished these base coats today on his valhallans as it has allowed me to feel more caught up and less lazy (although i wasn't being lazy its difficult to not feel that way when the work desk is six feet from my bed!).
I really like how these are coming out so far and now i just need to decide what wash i'm using on them. I've alternated washes with all of Brams stuff and as he's so understanding of the creative process (and also he's not anal and particular) so i tend to get slightly varying finishes across the board on his work. I want to master my wash for these white tones, although admittedly bram is a flatterer when it comes to my ability to paint white, as he seems to think me a bit good at it.
I also slapped a basecoat on those tiny bloodbowl gobbos, as lukas is eagerly awaiting gallery photos of the lot and that's something else i didn't get around to doing. I can't wait to photograph these guys!
I decided that a little dotting of green static grass and a nice contrasting red flower would add a striking finish to these wonderful blue orcs. I am so chuffed with these, I haven't emplyed any particularly complicated techniques (although i did try some new stuff on the skin to attempt to keep that nice bright blue skin from the get go, which worked really well and it still pops even after all the finishing highlights.)
The red flowers add the finishing touch and i was careful to cut the flowers small enough to add but not subtract from all the work that's gone into them. They look especially good on the big dudes base creeping out from underneath the cracks of the bigger pebbles.
Next up on the table is the remainder of the infantry pieces for brams wonderfully creative valhallan force. In this small batch is the last of the foot soldiers and the two additional bear riders he's built. After that (for brams order) i will get around to his last tanks. Bram and me have been in discussion about more work near christmas time, so i am excited as always to see what he sends next and as one of my longest running loyal clients i'm glad to get around to his valhallans again after a break of a month or two as i always enjoy his feedback and dialogue when i'm working on his bits.
I had a little photo booth day with all the current orders on the table so i can begin getting them packed up and get back to the usual work flow (pre corona i would not stockpile orders so much but during the pandemic it's made more sense to keep things here under my clients discretion until i can send all their work back at once as they sent me lots at the beginning of things).
I also did a little shoot for the romans as i needed some nice big pics of them for my client.
Finally i've been quietly working on those orcs and i'm basically done on them now with the bases going on last night/today. I need to paint the two little goblins they came with but they'll be nice and quick to do. i can't wait to see these all finished and in the photo booth. I tried to think back to the last time i painted orcs
I took a second swing at the blood and gore effect on this warg chieftan. With a little creativity, time, patience and in the end a tiny little dot of pruple paint (for that good old "innards" look) and i think i nailed it. I am very happy with the result and it really makes the model stand out agains't it's counterparts, that and the "old man" style grey to white fur.
Starting off today i roughed up these wights i painted for my client recently. He asked me to make them dirter, more "old world" so i went with a nice burnt umber, orange, silver tip "rust" effect i have been practising recently when i get the chance. I applied the effect over both the silver and the gold armor and i think it worked well and they look explicitly less "clean". I also added glowing eye and mouth sockets, they really look ready for battle now!
I went to the shops and tracked down some gloopy all purpose glue to try out this bloody maw effect i saw ages ago (maybe 2003!) I'm sure i haven't pulled it off properly but i will admit i rushedly applied it when i could have taken more time. Likely i will re do this before asking for a final verdict from my client as i think he will really like it when i get it right.
I thoroughly enjoyed basecoating the troll chieftan, what a mad model with such invigorating character qualities. I have had to do some dremel work on the sword as it's broken at the worse place and just keeps coming off with even careful handling (it takes a tiny poke!) Hopefully it's stronger today now that is dried (done after photography here).
Perhaps the most interesting model of this paint sesh is this orc captian model from the "not bloodbowl" orcs i'm doing. What a fascinating and interesting piece with so many curious little elements to paint. Pictured here half done with the fur finished but the rest still needing finishing.
I have painted the skin of these orcs now by giving them a soft dark blue wash and two highlights of turquoise blue and then a light sky blue for lips, eyes and fingers and such. I decided to contrast the blue with purple tongues which i'm sure is going to look stellar.
The army green spray i had from sprayster.com is perfect for my turtles. I went back and forth on the idea of doing them in the cartoon or the movie tone but i think i'll start with a cartoony green and then work them down and back into a more grimey look halfway between the two. I am definitely going to encorperate the famous freckles from the movie versions, i always like how they had that black dot with a white dot inside them look, like little backwards eyes.
Pardon my internet but it takes so long to upload pics. I really enjoyed these trolls. They may still need a touch up, some more blending at the grainier areas but these older sculpts are kind of grainy in their apearence so i think most of that is the mix of techniques i used to paint them (washing and drybrushing can create that effect, you could call it "dusty").
I think they look great, i'll be eager for my clients feedback on these. Primarilly i think maybe the loin cloths might need a touch up to make them pop a bit more, as they are they blend in a little to well, but if my client likes the naturalistic look then it might just suit perfectly. All of these criticisms come from my own inner insecurities having seen so many pictures of these famous models and wondering if i did a good job myself.
I didn't even realise how much i was looking forward to this warg model. What a captivating sculpt! I haven't finished the grasses yet but i can't wait to put some thick bushels of siflor tufts under that rock to really give the apearence of the warg climbing up to look out over the hills of rohan! I felt the dead body needed to be gory, and i played it safe on blood on the actual warg itself. That feral mixed fur look wouldn't fare to well with a load of blood splatter. I mixed three different red and gloss mixes and used it to blend a brownish/red ish pool of blood at the feet of the casualty and then used the darker of the mixes in and around the lower jaw of the warg. I kind of want to get some "multi purpose glue" (the cheap stuff that doesn't really stick anything together but stretches and can be used to make blood trails) and make some gloopy blood dripping from his mouth. In my experience clients tend to generally veer away from models being to bloody. So i think we shall se what my client says.
As a warm down i painted my first harry potter model, i think i slayed those greens which i was worried about coming out to flat and they came out great. The hair also was very fun, working with blonde is always exciting. as expected the base was an underwhelming experience and negotiation. I managed to paint it to a nice standard but actually forgot to photograph it. More to come soon.
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A blog for the w.i.p element of the EZPainter process.