Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The Gun Savant

Here's the final painted version of the GuN Savant. I'm quite happy with the way this turned out. It was a pretty simple painting process in the end. Just a couple of base coats and a few layers of wash.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The Jolly Highwayman and the Gun Savant

So I painted up the Rogue Trader. I swapped out his chainsword with a slightly more exotic chainsword. I wanted him to look quite exotic, as though he's picked up parts of his uniform piece-meal or tumbled out of a costumer's.


I also put together a Gun Savant from a Necromunda Escher Juve. You don't see many female Servitors so I thought it was time that was rectified. The shotgun was fairly easy to clip away. It was replaced with various Hell-gun parts. The head is simply a servo-skull with a few additional shapes etc.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Alternative Tallarn

Amongst the goodies that Victoria Miniatures sent me the other day were enough parts to create a complete squad of alternative Tallarn. I love the idea of distinctive Imperial Guard regiments but yet again, GW have let the fans down by not having a viable alternative to their quite badly out of date metal models. (Also, in putting these together and seeing what others are doing with Vic's IG range, it really does ram home how awful the vanilla Cadians actually are, but that's just my opinion).

Anyway, Vic sent me Arcadian Legs, Victoria Torsos, bare arms, plus enough packs and pouches to add a bit of character. Add to that the desert heads that I bought from Puppetswar and the packs from The Assault Group and I think I've got a nicely looking squad of Tallarn.

The parts from Victoria Miniatures go together so well. They are mostly free of flash, and what flash their is, is hair thin and easily removable with a craft knife, or even a light finger rub. The casting is second to none, with crisp detail and virtually no warpage.

All in, I'm looking forward to painting these.

Stand and Deliver : The Plucky Highwayman

I wasn't intending to recreate Adam Ant, honest!

I recently picked up a unit of Solar Auxila at Warhammer Fest a few months back. I had thought that they were the replacement for the Terran Army, however, reading up about them, I discovered that they are intended as some kind of Conquistador type unit, backing up Rogue Traders in their conquest of new planets etc.

That led me to think that they needed  some kind of commander, and so my Rogue Trader was born.

The base model is obviously the new plastic commissar. The head came from an Empire Great Sword character.

I wanted the weapons to be both elegant, (i.e. the dark elder weapon that this chap has obviously found or stolen) and brutal (i.e. the standard Imperial chain sword).

Monday, November 3, 2014

The Penitent and the Servitor: Pt 2

I had some time this weekend to put a splash of paint on my latest INQ28 creations. Of the two I think the Servitor is by far the more successful. I tried hard to capture the JB aesthetic for this one, spurred on by a comment from the Ammobunker regarding him looking like something from an INQ cuckoo clock.

The penitent is a little plainer looking. I was opting for a more ragged appearance. I like the idea that his gaolers have covered him in pinned on religious and devotional texts as a way to negate his apparent transgressions.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Temple Longhouse

So I recently finished the latest installment in my now 3x3 underhive board. This time I chose to start at the Southern Shore again as I love the effect that I stumbled across for the sump crust.

This piece was built around an old printer that I happened across. A session with a razor-saw later and I had myself a pile of parts that all looked very suggestive. The piece was finished with a few Manufactorum wall parts and various pieces of cast up flooring and bits of old wood.

 The shore is littered with a tideline of junk.

The stairs here were cast from a mold made of lego.

The Northern end of the longhouse provides the only entrance and exit.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Penitent and the Servitor

These two came out of a recent bits bash. I've been trying to come up with a way of using some of the less popular parts of the Warhammer Zombie kit that I have laying around, namely those aweful looking torsos. 

The Penitent is an Inquisitorial prisoner, condemned and crucified to a large block of wood or stone. The act of carrying it around becomes his penance and the seals and religious tracts pinned to his rags provide testimony of his crimes.

The Servitor is bit more of a basic character, armed with a flamer and based upon the body of a fallen hero. I like the idea of this chap being some kind of 'bring out your dead' type character, incinerating the bodies of the diseased and infected that he denizens of the Underhive have been hoarding in the misguided hope of resurrection.

Victoria Miniatures: Part 2

I had some time over the previous evenings to put together the first of the heavy weapons teams from Victoria Miniatures. I opted for the heavy mortar and I thought I'd say a few words about how I found it as a kit.

This was a great kit to put together. The way that it has been divided up into it's constituent parts actually allows for a fairly intuitive build. I referred to the instructions on the Victoria Miniatures Heavy mortar page for the finer details, but the main structure went together really easily. The way this kit has been put together means that making a construction mistake is actually quite hard. The parts slot together in only one, or two ways, and often the wrong way looks ... well ... wrong.

As you can see, once it's been put together and based it is a really nice looking kit, easily standing on it's own against the more expensive kits from Forgeworld. Jake Schneider's wheels look really nice, with plenty of detail and the little sprue of handles and cranks really adds character. I've added a couple of Victoria Miniatures crouching crew figures here. The other one can't be seen in this photo as I haven't added arms yet :)

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Victoria Miniatures : Part 1

Over the next few weeks and months I'll be writing a number of posts about Victoria Miniatures new offerings. Recently Vic put a call out for on her Facebook page for bloggers to review her products and I answered the call.

I had been hoping to put together a Tallarn squad based upon Victoria Miniatures' Arcadian legs and Victorian torsos etc. I was expecting to receive a few sprues of each, but what Vic actually sent me went far beyond any expectations, including enough parts for a whole 10 man Tallarn squad, plus an entire set of her new heavy weapon sprues, designed by Jake Schneider. I can only give a massive shout out to Victoria Miniatures and say thank-you very much for such generosity.

As Vic has only just released the heavy weapons sprues I thought it only fitting that I save the Tallarn squad for another post and crack on with some initial reviews.

I've been a fan of Victoria Miniatures offerings for some time now and so I am probably slightly biased. Initial impressions are hugely positive. The weapon sprues are nicely designed using a CAD to 3D printing process. I know I have had negative things to say regarding CAD design in the past but after visiting Warhammer Fest last week and seeing what Forgeworld are doing with CAD, especially with their new Solar Auxilia range, I'm something of a convert. Perhaps I'm a few years behind the times, but it has to be said that GW could take a massive leaf out of what Victoria Miniatures and Forgeworld are doing with the process.

The material of these pieces seems to be similar to Forgeworld's brand of resin although I'm far from a resin expert. Any flash seems to be hair thin and would be easily removed. Most importantly, in the pieces I received, there appears to be very little or next to no warpage what-so-ever. Overall, the detail is extremely crisp and is a testament to whatever casting process Vic is using.

In terms of aesthetics, I'm loving the idea of an AK style Autogun.

The two-man heavy weapons in particular are very nicely produced and look simple to put together. The level of detail included is nice and the general styling would look very good next to a WW2 inspired sci-fi army. The wheels in particular virtually scream Death Korp.

A really nice extra touch is the sprue of crank handles and fly-wheels that comes with the heavy mortar.

Finally, a word about price. Being a fan of Forgeworld means that I often find my wallet considerably lighter than I'd like it. Vic's heavy weapons are comparable in terms of quality and level of detail and are roughly half the price of similar items offered by Forgeworld.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Chaos renegades: old skool

Finally, Forgeworld have released something approximating the Chaos Renegade range, so wonderfully illustrated in the old Slaves to Darkness book: the Gal Vorvak. I always thought it a shame that GW didn't capitalise on their wonderful chaotic imagery at the time and produce some true horrors. These guys more than make up for it, however.

To start with, they are huge, at least 50mm from foot to head, dripping in cracked armour, hideous mutations and various warp induced sproutings. I'm guessing the sculptor(s) was/were influenced by John Carpenter's 'The Thing' as some of the mutations on these things are sickening (in a good way). 

Forgeworld have really gone to town and they were a pleasure to both build and paint.

I painted these in the colours of my own traitor legion, using the same method that I used with the Chaos Chosen, namely a wash of Nuln Oil, followed by various splashings of turquoise and terracotta. Further washes of Sepia to follow, finished with a pattina of gold and various green and turquoise wash hues.

The results are pretty random as you'd expect from something so twisted and shaped by the warp. The remnants of their armour seems to barely contain their bodies.

I love this arm in particular. In fact the way most of the hands have been sculpted are fairly horrifying, from hands based on huge jaw bones, the fingers that have melded with weapons, as below.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

A Tale of Two Psychics

Before I went on holiday I had the chance to put some paint on these chaps.


Sunday, August 10, 2014

The King is Dead, Long Live the King

And lo, the portents did tell of the death of the All Father and the arrival of the new, an individual to strike courage into the hearts of old guard, to lead it forth, to tame those things that scratched and bit and clawed in the dark and turn them to further use.

He appeared along the Sump shore one morning. The Witches, keening in their blindness, paid him no heed and let him pass. Towards the water line the crust was studded with thousands of Sump Jellies, gelatinous and quivering, decorating the high tide mark like a menagerie of blancmanges as though even they had given up upon the water, preferring death over that which they found poisoned and unpalatable. He moved amongst them like a stilt walker, piercing each and every wretched victim that he came across with his staff as though engaged in some obligatory tally of the dead.

The Temple runners spied him at first light, followed, careful to keep their distance and their quickness. Word spread. A plan was hatched. A trap was sprung.

And in this way the traveller did enter unto the Temple.

In revisiting the Temple of the Lizard I thought it was time that the old All-father had a challenger. I've always assumed that the position of leader of the Temple is always a precarious one, and that the members would be only too quick to murder the old leader if they thought a stronger one was at hand.

This guy is based upon one of the Forgeworld renegade psychics. I also like the idea that he has stolen the All-father's mask and used it for his own ends. Mystery being an imperative amongst the Temple.
He comes preaching the Truth, or his version of it, hence the books and devotional objects.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

The Unwitting Gate

Not all renegade psykers are lucky enough to be able to control their abilities. In the heat of battle, some lose their inhibitions and let their abilities own them to such an extent that they become the unlucky recipient of attention from some nefarious warp entity. 

This guy is one such individual. He's intended as some kind of living warp gate. He's a simple conversion really. I was trying to get the idea of some warp gribbly emerging from beneath his skin. I've always thought that the original sculpt, although lovely, looked a little "I've left the oven on!" 

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Victoria Miniatures and a GW winge

Lately, as an Imperial Guard collector (enough of that Astra Militarum nonsense thankyou!) I've been more and more attracted to Victoria Miniatures' alternative guard offering and less attracted to what GW have been turning out. Aside from the aforementioned Scions pack that provided so many spare parts for my INQ28 projects, I haven't actually bought an entire GW kit for about a year.

Instead my money has been spent on Victoria Miniatures and Forgeworld. I thought I'd take this post to explain why and show off a few a couple of minis that I purchased from Vic a month or two ago.

Part of my problem with the GW IG range is that Cadians are inherently vanilla. With the fluff and background that GW have access to you would really think that their flagship IG product range would have a little more ... well ... interest. With Victoria Minis you get the complete opposite. Granted Vic has always offered complete squads, but part of the attraction for me is that she also offers a large range of mix and match bits allowing for any number of combinations. (The fact that they work well with the few GW special weapons that I quite like is also a plus).

My larger gripe with GW however has to be the CAD design that comes along with mass produced plastic minis. I'll allow for the fact that they have gotten better over the years, but for me, there is still something a little sterile, a little .... plastic ... about a CAD designed mini. Now I know that mass producing plastic sprues does not lend itself well to hand sculpting each and every single individual model. But while some of GW's ranges are amazing (Dark Eldar for instance) the poor old IG range seems to have been left behind in Cadian, smooth armour, lack of fine detail hell. A few extra details would make all the difference. Studs on the shoulder pads for instance, rolled sleeves, a few nice looking respirator heads. The biggest thing, however, is that GW seem almost wilful in ignoring the demands of their IG customer base. The fans have been crying out for plastic Steel Legion for years.

If GW released a few guard alternatives, I for one would be tempted to return to the GW fold. At least until Vic's next release :)

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Conversions Kits Pt 6: Chimera Shilka

So continuing my general trend of producing conversion kits for the venerable Imperial Guard Chimera, here's the next one that I've been working up.

This one is intended as a take on the old Soviet Shilka. I know the IG already have an anti-aircraft capability in the Hydra and Wyvern. I was disappointed however, to see that GW included an open-backed turret housing for those models. I've always preferred my turrets blocky and solid looking. Hence the model below.

As you can see, the conversion kits comes in 3 parts. I've still got to do a little work on the gun-mounts. They need sanding down to match the curve of the turret-housing.  It's 95% there though.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Shameless selling plug

I'm selling a past tank conversion on Ebay. This one is based on the venerable Chimera Chasis with Leman Russ side sponsons and a scratchbuilt turret.

Once it's gone it's gone for good.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Terrain: As Above, So Below.

Being the further tales of Secundus underhive, and the Ash Wastes which surround it.

I finished two pieces of terrain this weekend. First up, the 5th section of Underhive Sump in the form of a straight up, mainly unmodified piece of Forgeworld Zone Mortalis. I plan on expanding the Labyrinth proper using these pieces from time to time. They are gorgeously cast and full of little details although as you can see I mainly painted this piece up in rust colours. I also added a little scratchbuilt bowser or old fuel cell to add interest.

I picked up some of GW's new Agrellan Earth crackle paint for this tile and I've got to say the results were pretty cool. Firstly, it seems to strip whatever layer is behind it so that needs to be taken into consideration. Secondly the effects seem to differ depending on how thickly you spoon it on, and I do mean spoon. I put it on in a 1mm thick layer and it crackled up nicely. Any thinner and the effects are less obvious. After it dried I gave it a thin coat of PVA as it's quite fragile without, then gave it several wash layers. The results give a nice abandoned look.

Then there's this.

When I saw that Forgeworld had released this I knew that it had to form part of the Ash waste surrounding Secundus. Forgeworld have seriously outdone themselves with this piece. I keep spotting little details every time I look at it, and painting it was a joy. Each wash layer seemed to bring out extra details that I had missed before.

As with the last topside piece, this was mainly painted using sprays and various wash coats. I put the Aggrellan Earth to good use again and gave the results a wash of rust pigment.

Still not sure if it's finished yet. It's been such a great subject to paint that I keep wanting to add more. Guess I'll have to stop before I ruin the whole thing.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Inquisitor Treask & the Flame Savant Pt2.

So here they are painted.

Went with a very rough and ready approach to painting here with lots of dry brushing. The Savant in particular was treated fairly roughly with quite a bit of rust weathering powder.