Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Transmission Interrupted

Image stolen from

Hi everyone, this is just a quick post to explain myself. The lack of posts lately hasn't been intentional, but I've been extremely busy with various real life things. Everything's fine, I've just got a lot on my plate at the moment!

I'll add updates when I can, but they'll be sporadic for the time being. In the meantime, take care!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Allies Incoming!

Wow. As it turns out, it's been a while since the last update. There's a simple reason - I've gone and done something a bit rash.

I've bought a new army...

Now it's not because I'm sick of the 77th - quite the opposite, in fact. The length of time it is taking me to get the 77th together means I'm not able to take them to tournaments, which is a pity. I've been borrowing armies, but I want to be able to take my own. So, instead of rushing my Guard, I thought I'd buy an army that I can build and paint relatively quickly. This will mean I can complete my Guard to my satisfaction, while being able to play an army I'm familiar with.

Here are the offenders in question - a Space Wolf army! It's a 37-model, 2000pt army, which will be perfect for getting ready for the tabletop quickly - especially with the help of an airbrush!

This was meant to be a brief diversion from the IG, but it's been going for a bit longer than I expected. Still, they shouldn't take too much longer to finish building and then get painted, and I'll pop up some updates as I go along. Stay tuned!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Got Colour Shapers?

For anyone out there who does any amount of sculpting in their armies - even just simple gap-filling, here's what I want you to do:

Step 1: Go and buy yourself some colour shapers.
Step 2: Go home and be amazed at how much they improve your sculpting.
Step 3: Send me rewards and money for changing your life! (Or at least a nice comment below).

I'm quite serious about Steps 1 and 2 - Step 3 is optional, but feel free to do it anyway!

These things are amazing, and I can't believe I got by without them before. And before you ask - no, I don't work for the company that makes them!

Essentially they look like a paintbrush, but instead of bristles they sport rubber tips of varying softness, shapes and sizes. The rubber means that your sculpting medium (such as Green Stuff) won't stick to it. At all (well, unless you use a very high ratio of yellow to blue). This allows the nice, smooth, shiny result you see people come up with in their sculpts. They come in soft (which have white tips) and firm (which have grey tips), which I'll mention in a second.

The same company also makes what they call Clay Shapers, which are the same thing but with very firm tips (which are black).

I have a range of shapes, with a couple of very firm shapers, a couple of firm and a few soft. I use the very firm ones to get the putty where I want it on the model and sculpt the basic shape I'm after. Next, the firm ones are used to add finer detail (such as folds in the cloth). Finally, if some details are too sharp, I use the soft shapers to lightly brush over the putty and smooth it out.

Using just these, I can get the basic sort of shapes I'm after. If I need to do finer detail, I do this with my metal tools - I bought Gale Force 9's sculpting kit which, although quite expensive, does come with a spiffy case. My girlfriend tells me it makes me look like a psychopathic dentist, about to torture people:

Anyway, that's how I do my sculpting - you can see some of my examples here (Death's Head veteran), here (Commissar's peak cap) and here (Counts-as Marbo).

I've still got a long way to go before I get really good, but it certainly helps to have the right tools for the job!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Death's Head Veteran Squad - First Member

Not feeling like painting the other night, I got to work on the first of member of my second veteran squad. After seeing these great stormtroopers by jdteixeira over at the Work In Progress forums, I've been wanting to use the idea of Necron Warrior heads for a while - a veteran squad felt like the perfect time to break them out!

He's got a shotgun I converted up as described in this guide, and a bit of green stuffing and plasticard work as well. The Necron Warrior heads need a bit of sculpting as they have no neck, and I bulked out the rear of the heads to look like fully-enclosed helmets. Let me know what you think! The bandolier was made in a similar way to the shell holder on the side of the shotgun. I had to repair the forearm as well, because it is the sergeant's arm from the troop box and removing the insignia just left a flat area that didn't look right.

This squad will probably go together quite slowly, as I want to make painting what I've already built my priority for the time being. I'll be adding updates as they get done though!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Yet Another Commissar - WIP

It's probably not a secret any more, but I really love painting Commissar models! They're one of the things that drew me to the Guard in the first place, and I like the unique personality they possess - it really makes them stand out from the ranks of Guardsmen. I've got 2 Commissars already done, but I'd been doing some minor sculpting for my shotgun conversions, and with the left over Green Stuff from these sessions I came up with this:

Now this idea certainly isn't mine - I first saw this beautiful example on Coolminiornot. Having a spare metal commander model (it's from the old Cadian Command Squad box) I decided to have a go at this conversion!

This is one of my few attempts at sculpting something other than a basic shape, so I decided to break it down into several steps and let each bit dry before I moved on to the next. It basically went as a cylinder on top of his head, then the basic peak cap shape. This ended up being too flat on top, so I added some more bulk to give a bit more of a sense of his head being there. I also sculpted the eagle symbol at this stage.

Once that was done, I added the brim, and when that was dry I finished it off with the braid above the brim, and glued on some thin slivers from plasticard rod at each end of the braid.

Let me know what you think! I'll paint him up at some point and show it off here, but I've got a lot more urgent things to do at this stage!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Command Squad Veterans

Last week I showed you Captain Shout, my Company Commander, so here's the rest of his squad. Being veterans, I wanted to make them stand out so I used a variety of bits to differentiate them from the rest of my force, and hopefully make them look battle-hardened!

For those interested, they've got Space Marine Scout heads, Catachan legs (I like these for veterans as they have lots of pouches already on them) and various backpacks and other bits and pieces.

In the interests of making these guys stand out, I decided to soup up the squad's voxcaster as well. I added an extra antenna from some guitar string and made the knob at the end with some plasticard rod. It's very long, but I quite like it - it will help with long-range communications across the battlefield!

Monday, September 20, 2010

C Company Commander - Captain Shout!

Here's the man in charge - Captain Shout! I wanted him to stand out among my army, which is why I put him on a rock (just a bit of bark I picked up from a garden bed). I was having trouble finding good-looking debris for him to stand on that would fit on a 25mm base, so I went with this. Hopefully when it's painted up it will still fit in with the rest of the army!

The torso is a Forgeworld one, which I picked up second hand a long time ago. I hadn't planned on using it, but I saw a painted version over at the 42nd Cadian and decided I couldn't leave it out! The servo skull isn't currently attached - I plan on painting it separately, and attaching it afterwards.

For those wondering, his name is a nod to an ANZAC Captain who fought at Gallipoli and won a Victoria Cross for his bravery. For those interested, you can read about him here.

Check back the same time next week, for the rest of the command squad. Thanks for looking!