Thursday, December 22, 2011


Today I thought I would talk about how I find inspiration for painting and modifying my models. If I simply said that I look online for pictures of similar models and take ideas from other hobbyists you can argue that I'm copying them. Well you are partially correct... copying an idea and making it your own is not necessarily copying, I think of it more as inspiration. Take my Avatar for instance, I looked at a few models on coolminiornot/google and the extended sword was a recurring modification that made the model look much better. The same thing was to be said about the flames on the sword. The extended limbs wasn't a recurring mod but I really liked the idea and I thought it greatly improved the aesthetics of the model. In the end, all of these ideas inspired me to create my model.
Sometimes, certain models just scream out something to me. For those that are concerned about my well being, No I am not actually hearing voices. Take the ugliest Circle model for instance (original Gorax) when I looked at him for the first time, he reminded me of the typical monsters chasing Scoobydoo with his hands in the air. I then thought, why couldn't he be holding something over his head like a person or another warbeast. Then it occurred to me... Gorax looks pissed off and it's probably because some druid chained him up to a boulder. If I was chained up I'd be livid and would be raging. So this inspired me to create dead tree ripped out of the ground.
(Perhaps I could make up some rule to coincide with this modification. On Gorax's first attack he can be forced to forfeit his melee attacks and throw the tree creating a 3"AOE directly adjacent to his base. Model hit with a melee roll in this AOE would suffer a Pow 12 damage roll and the AOE would remain in effect for one round.)
Finally, take the Shadowhorn Satyr. His pose looks like he's pouting and he's about to have a Temper Tantrum. Not quite the look we're looking for is it? After looking at him for a while, He talked to me and said: Al... look at me man, I'm a boxer!  I thought "What does a boxer look like when he's about to punch someone?" So I got up off my chair and made my best Mike Tyson impression and remembered the body position for his assembly. I also thought that an extended goatee would add a little motion to his static pose... so I made a simple braided goatee.
So for those of you who are visually inspired, here are a few of my modified models. Please take into account that I'm no expert and these were some of my first models ever painted so the quality isn't fantastic. Just remember, If you don't like the look of a model, change it and make it your own.

Gorax with tree 1
Gorax with tree 2
Super Punch Out Satyr 1
Super Punch Out Satyr 2

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Kaya Completed

I love it when a model paints itself. What I mean is when things just come together and it requires next to no effort. Everything just fell into place with her. I painted Kaya's face, eyes, hair and skin the other night before jumping into my template project. Last night I decided to continue working on her and since I wasn't able to fall asleep until 4:00 I plugged along and nearly completed her. This morning after running a few errands I did the final touches, based her and gave her a protective coat.
I'm happy with the results and after looking at some previous models, I am starting to see some progression.
I tried taking the picture with our Sony camera instead of the Iphone. Here's a comparison of the two cameras.
Sony Camera
Iphone camera

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

New Project

I'm now looking to start a new project but before I start I thought I would figure out how many points I have completely painted for both of my armies. As it turns out, I have 67 points of Menoth with 2 casters and also 67 points with 3 casters for Circle. I organized my unpainted/un-assembled as well. Since I'll be leaving for Canada in a couple of days, I don't want to start a unit. It's probably going to be a caster or a solo. Now all I need to do is to choose which one.
(Sorry about the picture quality. IPhones are convenient but take lousy closeups.)

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Buldur and Feral Warpwolf were painted by someone else

Area effect templates

After completing the Avatar, I wanted to do something different for a change. I wasn't quite motivated to start a circle model so I looked up all my model's spell effects and feats from both my Circle and Menoth armies. I thought it would be cool to have personalized templates for all of my spells/effects that stay in play. (Inspired by RedmanPhill's Subject to Stupidity blog - wall of fire)
I came up with the following list:
Woldwatcher - 3" forest
Woldwarden - 4" forest
Druids - 3" cloud
Sentry Stone - 3" forest
Swamp Gobbers 3" Cloud/ 5" Cloud
Krueger - 3x 3" electrical storm
Baldur - 4" forest
Kromac - 4" Rift
Feora - Wall of Fire
FlameGuard Cleansers - 4" Cloud
High Reclaimer - 5x 3" Cloud
I wanted this project to be quick, easy, cheap and usable during a game. I went to the art store across the street and bought a sheet of foam card and sheet of cork for 5 euro. I cut out the templates and started going to town by gluing cork and sand to the different sized forest and rift templates. Once the glue was try I quickly painted the bases with a very large brush and a cheap dark grey acrylic paint. I then proceeded to dry-brush 3 different color tones on each template. The final steps for the forests and rift were to add some flock and create small trees with cut down toothpicks and flock. By keeping the trees small, I'm still able to place models in the template quite easily.
The wall of fire was quite easy as well. after the initial 4"x3/4" template was cut I added a small foam card wall in the middle of the template and glued it in place with toothpicks. I then rolled green stuff into two sausage shaped strips and placed them on either side of the wall. The shape of the flames was then "carved" with dental tools and an exacto knife. I added a bit of sand on the edge and did a quick paint job to imitate fire.
The Cloud and Electric storm templates suck. I really wanted something that was visually cool but still usable and the use of cotton or foam in a can wouldn't allow me to place models in the template so I figured that these would be better than nothing. I just painted them in different shades of grey.
Here are my results.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Avatar completed, (more or less)

I think that this model wins my award for the longest period of time to complete from start to finish. I started it nearly two years ago and I only got in the zone with it during one painting session a week ago. All the other sessions were just weren't going right. Green stuff job was awful, Colors weren't blending quite right, dry brushing had too little or too much paint on it, the initial color chosen on the Jack's hull wasn't right... The base, the shield and the arms were the only parts that went decently smooth.
I'm happy with the modification since this was my first major one but there is a lot of improvement to be had in my green stuff manipulation and shaping.
The inspiration for this mod came from a few models that I saw on coolminiornot and from web pics of broken zealot's Avatar (Who as I just discovered, also happens to be on IABN.)
Thanks for checking it out.