Wednesday, July 31, 2013

So what's next?

With the Eldar (more or less) behind me, it's time to consider what to work on next. I'm truly at an impasse as to what that may be so I figured I'd turn to you folks to find out what you'd like to see more of! I've put together a poll in the upper right that lays out the options from the (waaaaay too many) projects that languish in various states of incompletion in the Closet of Doom...

#1 - Imperial Guard. There's still plenty of work to be done on the Glorious 7th, numerous tanks and a handful of infantry. Of all the projects, this one is the nearest to completion.

#2 - Adeptus Mechanicus. There's always more work to be done on the Ad-Mech. There's several units of Skitarii that need to be built, as well as some fun tanks using the final pair of King Russ tanks that I have, and plenty of already-built stuff that needs to be painted.

#3 - Tzeentch Renegades. There's a burgeoning 40k Chaos army lurking on the shelves and in various states of assembly. While they'd be fun to do, they are predominantly blue and yellow, which I just got done doing a whole mess of with the Alaitoc gits.

#4 - Heresy-Era World Eaters. This is essentially not even an army, just a random assortment of units that need to be painted and sold. There's some cataphract terminators, an assault squad, some jetbikes... And that's about it. Would be simple to knock out, and would let me experiment on some new white techniques (I was never very happy with my previous method).

#5 - Orks. Lastly, there's darn near an entire Ork army left over from years and years ago, built and primered. including a Stompa with some FW upgrades. The only thing the army lacks is any sort of HQ choice, which would be easy enough to rectify. Downside: Batch painting ahoy.

What do you folks want to see? Please vote on the poll, or if you have other ideas please let me know in the comments!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Blatant Self Advertisement - Eldar on eBay

Time to stuff the pointy-eared gits into the webway and off to their next destination - the vast majority of the Eldar I've been working on of late are now up on the auction block to help pay for a new pair of glasses (boo!) and act as some extra spending money for GenCon (woo!). Note that as a general rule, I don't sell or ship overseas anymore due to the ludicrous price increases in shipping costs. However, if you are a follower of the blog in good standing and are interested in bidding please contact me via email, I'm willing to make exceptions on a case-by-case basis (just bear in mind that the actual shipping costs will need to be determined at the end of the auction).

A couple folks have asked for an army shot so I snapped a couple quick pics over my lunch hour. They certainly are... Colorful! All in all a thoroughly enjoyable army to paint, and I'm looking forward to applying some of the techniques I used on these guys in my future projects. The sponge effect really worked out well and I'm thinking it may be fun to use that technique to apply weathering to the dozens of guard tanks that are lurking in the Closet of Doom!

In other news, we finally got the recordings and video from a gig we did over the 4th of July weekend with the band. The mp3 recordings may be found here, and we have the whole show up on our YouTube channel here. Video quality isn't exactly astounding unfortunately - I'm the blur playing bass on the right. Heh. For the most part I just play bass and do backing vocals, but I'm singing lead on "Ozark Mountain Racer". Fun times!

Eldar - (subset of) The army going onto the auction block

With GenCon rapidly approaching, and the unexpected cost of a new pair of glasses cropping up last week, it's time to put the Eldar up for sale. I'd been waffling about what exactly was going up on the block as I did want to keep a small allied contingent for my guard. I finally settled on what that would be (Bonesinger, Wraithblades, Corsairs and the Crimson Hunter) but the rest is getting the chop. I went through and snapped a new set of pics of what all will be up for sale over the next couple days, and figured I'd share 'em here:



Warlock Council

Fire Dragons

Striking Scorpions

Dire Avengers

Guardian Defenders

Warp Spiders




Wave Serpent 1

Wave Serpent 2


All in all I really had a blast painting this army, all the various color schemes helped to stave off Army Painter's Fatigue and it was surprisingly easy to stay on task and keep cranking them out. Expect to see a lot more Hobby ADHD over the next few months as I ricochet crazily around the half dozen other projects that lurk within the Closet of Doom!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Eldar - Wraithblades painted

Disaster struck today when I didn't pay heed to my instinct that it was too humid and tried sealing some miniatures. Frosted the lot of 'em. ARGH.

However, this isn't the end of the world, and I've found that brushing on some gloss varnish over the worst of it and re-spray-sealing the models they can usually recover from my rookie mistake. The Wraithblades were the least affected so I snapped a couple pics:

The blades were done up in a graduated red which sets off against the blue and yellow pretty well. They were done by starting with a dark flesh basecoat, then worked up from gory red through hot orange, followed by a wash of carroburg crimson. The blue and gems follow the same recipe as found on the other Alaitoc models in the army. Easy peasy!

Definitely a fun unit to build and paint, and they've worked rather well on the table so far as well! Next up is the Seer Council, which were unfortunately a bit more effected by the frosting and actually required some full-on painted touch ups... That'll teach me to disregard my own advice on spray sealing, I guess!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Eldar - Not exactly batch painting, but still...

No painting time this morning (the snooze button's siren call would not be denied), so just a little forward progress today. At this point in the process, I broke up the batch into smaller groups so I could focus on the colors that wouldn't necessarily be shared across all the models. On the other hand, I ended up working a little on each of 'em so it's still sort of batch painting! Heh.

The seers with witchblades and singing spears got their blades done up in purple (still in progress, gonna try and add some lightning), and I started blocking in the areas which will eventually be white with Shadow Grey - This will then get passes with fortress grey and ghost grey, with only the very uppermost edges with pure white. The farseer's cloak, the fur on one of the warlocks and the hair on the other will all end up getting the treatment.

I'm not entirely sure what I'm going to do with the spiritseer and bonesinger spot-color-wise yet, so they just got a little touch up here and there. Eventually they'll get runes and such on their cloaks in white, but I want to work the purple from the warlocks and farseer in there somewhere.

On the advice of my buddy Dave, I'm going with red blades (which will eventually transition up to orange and yellow). So far, I'm really digging how it sets off against the blue!

Last up are Illic Nightspear and the Autarch - started blocking in their cloaks, though in retrospect I'm going to re-do the Autarch's cloak to match Illics. Think I'll save the white for the seer council models.

I always wince taking pictures close up like this. It definitely shows up all the issues and mistakes and places I've missed that I still need to address - oof! However, looking at the pics helps me understand what I need to practice on!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Eldar - Painting the yellow and general cleanup

Pressing onwards with the group painting - laid down the yellow and did some general cleanup of things I've missed on the first pass. My yellow recipe is pretty straightforward, I start off by base coating anything that's intended to be yellow in Hot Orange. Much like the bone in the previous post, the yellow is very translucent, and I find that painting it directly over a black or other dark undercoat it tends to look very patchy. The orange 'shines' through the yellow and gives it a nice warm glow.

Once that dried I hit it with a quick drybrush of Fiery Orange - I was in the zone and didn't take a picture of that step though. Once the orange is on, I went in and layered on the Golden Yellow followed by a quick hit of Casadora Yellow wash.

At this stage I discovered a couple things I missed on the bone color step, so I went back and painted in the weapons on the Autarch, as well as the knee and elbow joints on the Wraithblades. I also started blocking in the areas that will end up being leather (boots, pouches, etc.) with Earth Brown.

At this point I'm thinking it's time to break the batch painting up into its constituent parts to do the final detailing. Expect more pics of various parts of these guys in a completed state soon!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Eldar - Painting the wraithbone

A bit more forward motion on the Eldar this morning and this afternoon after work - finished up the wraithbone, and took some pics between each stage to show how I do it:

Starting off I basecoat anything that's intended to be bone with leather brown. The vallejo bone color is pretty translucent and the brown helps give it a warmer undertone than painting it directly onto a black or blue basecoat.

After that is dry, I give the area a few coats of the bone color. Essentially I do a really heavy drybrush, leaving only the very deepest of recesses showing any of the leather basecoat. Another way of saying that is "missed a bit, there". Heh.

Next up is a Devlan Mud wash (aka army painter ink strong tone), to bring a little depth back to the recesses and stop it from looking as flat. This is applied in the "slather a bunch of Devlan Mud all over everything" method.

Once that is fully dry I go in and give the areas a light-to-medium drybrush of the bone color again, concentrating on the upper surfaces especially. That helps the model stop looking like I just slathered a bunch of Devlan Mud all over everything in the previous step.

I'm pretty happy with the psyker contingent thus far, I especially like how the amount of bone steadily increases as it goes Warlock > Farseer > Wraithseer > Bonesinger. Next up is the yellow stage - chugging right along!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Eldar - The last of the army; batch painting begins!

With just a double handful of models left to finish in the Eldar army I figured I'd do my usual batch painting process to get as many of the colors common to all the models done at the same time. At some point in the process I'll have to break them out into discrete groups to finish them off, but the blue, yellow and bone are all going to go on them in one big group.

I'd posted a pic of the models with the initial midnight blue, and this morning before work I got up and knocked out the rest of the blue process. After all the relevant bits were hit with midnight blue, I did three more drybrush passes with ultramarine blue, magic blue and ice blue followed by a guilliman blue wash. Next up will be all the bone color (leather brown > bleached bone > devlan mud > bleached bone), followed by the yellow (hot orange > fiery orange > golden yellow). Once that's in place it'll be detail work aplenty!

So far so good! Definitely on track to have the army done by the end of the week, then up on the auction block it'll go!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Eldar - Warp Spiders painted

In the home stretch now! Finished off the Warp Spiders this morning and snapped a few pics. I have to say that these are my least favorite models in the range - I feel the sculpts are just a little too chunky and static compared to the current plastics.

I went with a really deep blood red and bone as the main colors, similar to the Crimson Hunter but a tone darker overall. The heads needed something to help them pop so I went with a gold highlight and a black helmet. The weapon barrels and hoses were given a pass of jade green and scorpion green.

On the back I tried my hand at drawing in some spiderweb patterns which aren't brilliant, but they'll do the job. My buddy Dave suggested adding the spider-y aspect symbols on the webs, so I'm practicing drawing it before I try my hand at adding them to the models (and cleaning up a little of the sloppy webbing).

At this point there are exactly 13 models left to paint - a 5-strong unit of Wraithblades and a mess of characters. In order to keep the blue consistent I figured I'd do them all at the same time - at a certain point in the process I'll split them into smaller groups (or individuals), but for now it's a good way to get a big chunk of the color scheme out of the way all at once!