Monday, 15 August 2016

More Eldar War Walkers

Managed to finish off two more Eldar War Walkers this weekend.

As I said before, I really like these models. Although they are reasonably simple sculpts, they have a nice aesthetic to them and remind me lots of the Imperial Guard Sentinel. In fact, whilst I was painting them, I started having thoughts about building a super-retro Guard army around Ogryns and Sentinels...

Back to the War Walkers for now!

Although the Walkers have basically the same colour scheme, there are some variations across the squadron. I imagine the Walker pilots as being a little maverick: maybe having a little more individuality than some other Eldar crewmen, and being given more leeway as they operate behind enemy lines... The models remind me a lot of racing vehicles.

I love the ivory scheme on the armour panels for these Walkers. It was a good choice!

I discussed with my client varying the poses of these models, and it was agreed that I would try to make them look as though they were moving. The sculpt doesn't have fully poseable legs, but as the main Walker body is lightweight and there are a couple of foot options, you can achieve quite a few variations on the pose. This Walker is running cross-country...

Another view:

And yet another view:

And a final view:

Both new Walkers have weapon options, which I forgot to photo, but you've probably seen these on the earlier pictures anyway.

Here's a shot of the squadron in formation, ready to attack.

Next up will probably be some more Eldar vehicles...

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

A quick break: Space Sharks

This week, I've mostly been priming and building Eldar. But I took a few hours to make some more progress on another project I'm working on for a client, and then had a bout of insomnia, and then ended up making a lot more progress on the unit than I originally intended!

So, here are some in progress Space Sharks - aka Carcharodons Astra...

My client approached me and asked if I would be willing to do some units of Space Sharks, with the same scheme as the ones I painted for my own army. There's something about these Marines that just appeals to me, and so I jumped at the chance to paint some more!

This squad is now almost finished (just some touching up to be done, possibly some weathering, grass on the bases, and then maybe some blood on the claws). Other than some minor refinements, they are painted identically to my own army.

For the sergeant, I chose to use a tighter colour palette than on my own models. Since I painted mine, GW has come out with Rakarth Flesh and Flayed One Flesh, and that combination suits the Space Sharks well. They are a nomadic, space bound chapter, and as such the pallid flesh tone (which I also used on my Bloodbound Blood Reavers, also painted last year) really feels right.

I also improved my technique on the claws. I always felt that the original Space Sharks I painted needed a darker blue near the base of the claws, and so I added that to this squad. That works nicely as it provides a more natural transition between the colours of the glove and the actual claws.

I'll be painting a Captain Tyberos model for this project soon as well, but for now the Eldar are calling me...

Sunday, 7 August 2016

Some more Eldar...

Last couple of weeks have involved a lot of painting, but not so much photographing, so apologies that the blog has a been a little quiet. It always seems that the 15 or so minutes it takes to set up the photo booth is better spent cracking on with the next miniature!

I'm now well into the Eldar commission that I started earlier this year, and I can now show two completed Dire Avenger squads.

As readers of my blog will know, I wasn't overly impressed with this kit when I built the first squad. That impression hasn't changed much, but I'm doing what I can to get extra mileage out of these models. The casting doesn't allow for much in the way of posing of the rank and file Avengers; any dynamism is reserved for the Exarchs (which do have some pretty epic poses, albeit again fairly limited in range).

Let's start with an image of a squad leader for a change...

Armed with a shimmer shield and power halberd, this guy is definitely my favourite of the bunch. Once again, Spiritstone Red proved an essential tool in painting these troops.

Here's the squad together:

The second squad has the same armaments, save for the Exarch:

Again, he has a nice pose to him. My client requested a minor conversion to the pistol arm, which came out very nicely.

(Just realised that I missed the Exarch's gem on his head: dammit! This has been a pretty regular thing with these guys - just as I think I'm done, I realise that I've missed a gemstone or two! They are literally all over these troops.)

In a change of pace from painting infantry, I've also now completed a War Walker. These are a simple but evocative mechanised unit - being one of the older Eldar war-machine models (which I think was even present back in the days of Rogue Trader?).

The model reminded me a lot of the Imperial Guard Sentinel, which I am very fond of. I have no idea whether it's any good in the game but when it looks this good who cares!?!

My client provided both pairs of guns for the Walker, which you can see in the above picture. The guns simply slot into the weapon mounts.

As with the Wave Serpents, I've added some minor weathering to this Walker. This shot shows the staining and dripping from the gems.

Finally, here we have the rear of the Walker.

Overall, a nice model which I enjoyed painting. I currently have two more in the booth to be primed, and I'm hoping to finish those in the next week or so. 

Meanwhile, I've also started another side-project for a client who has briefed me on a Space Sharks (Carcharodons Astra) army. I painted up some of these last year for myself, and I'm very excited to be going back to the guys in grey: let's just say that I'm going to be getting some value from the Blood for the Blood God paint that I picked up earlier this week...

Sunday, 24 July 2016

More Eldar Wave Serpents...

The Eldar project marches, or perhaps hovers, onwards. Two more Wave Serpents finished this week.

The weather in the UK is uncharacteristically nice, and so I thought I would take these pictures in natural light. Whilst it beats spending twenty minutes setting up the light booth, I've also got some glaring shadows in these pictures and they haven't come out quite as well as I would have liked. They'll give you the general idea in any event!

First up, we have a Wave Serpent with lots of weapon options. As shown here it is equipped with shrunken catapults and missile launchers.

Light weathering - the staining lines - has been added per my client's instructions.

Another view of the hull. I personally love the bone colour on these models. As you'll see below, some of the models have been done in the same pattern (so, for example, the blue around the cockpit) but on this model I mixed things up a bit. I moved the blue to the rear section, and the turret weapon chassis is also blue: I think this works really well.

Another view of the rear door, also with weathering:

Here are the weapons options with the removable windshield:

And a close up of the pilot. All crew and interiors have been detailed.

Here is the second Wave Serpent for this week, which has pretty much been painted in the same style as that I completed a couple of weeks back.

This Serpent has similar weapons options, but not as many as the first Serpent.

Both tanks are on magnitudes bases, which is a great idea (this work was done by my client). The bases are done in the same way as the rest of the army.

Next up will be some more Dire Avengers. I'm trying to break the back of the infantry, and hoping to get a couple of boxes of Avengers finished in the next week or so: I'm then on to some more interesting "elite" type units (such as Warwalkers and a Fire Prism).

Sunday, 10 July 2016

Eldar: Another Wave Serpent

Another Wave Serpent this week, for the Eldar commission I'm working on.

This was painted in the same pattern as the previous Wave Serpent, but I rearranged some of the colours after discussion with my client. We both felt that there was too much blue on the outer hull, so the colour was shifted to the pilot's cabin instead.

I think that this works much better. The bone colouring on the hull is such a nice tone that it's a shame to limit it... The staining and water marks around the gems also work much better on bone, as opposed to the blue hull sections.

Barring some minor refinements to the process, the rest of the model is basically done in the same scheme as the last Serpent. With large commissions like this I always find that I start to adopt a pattern with the same model. I have four of these tanks to build and paint overall, as well as two more Eldar vehicles.

This view also shows the removeable guns and cockpit canopy.

A close up of the cockpit and pilot:

A shot of the tank's rear section:

Next up will be another Wave Serpent. I'm hitting a bit of a rhythm with these vehicles now.

Sunday, 3 July 2016

Prodos Games: AvP Alien Infants

So, my pledge for Prodos Games Alien v Predator: The Hunt Begins recently arrived. Despite all the delay, breaking open the package? It was worth it. The models are cast in resin, and show incredible detail. As soon as I had them in hand, I knew that I wanted to paint them up and base them on some starship deck plating.

The Aliens presented an interesting painting opportunity, as they have a limited colour palette, but looked as though they should also be a fairly fast job which I could fit in between commission pieces...

They painted up very quickly. I went with a black base, dry brushed several layers of grey with a mid-blue tone as well, then another dry brush of light grey.

Easy as the models were tho paint, they were very hard to photograph! All the dark tones created a camera challenge, but these shots should give you the basic idea.

The heads were picked out with black again. I then sealed the whole model with satin varnish, and added a gloss varnish to the heads.

Whilst not always seen in the movies and games, I painted the claws and teeth with an off-white paint. This helped give some definition and I think it helps to break up all the black on these models.

The bases were something I really wanted to do. They are from The Outpost, and I was really impressed both by their service and the quality of their bases. The casting is crisp and clean, and they have enough detail to be interesting whilst not so much that they detract from the model. I went with some brighter colours on the bases, to add interest.

Several Aliens have hazard striping on the bases, all grunged up.

One of my favourites! The tails are quite thin, but can be warmed up with hot water then reposed.

These are going to be a nightmare to store, but they're worth it! I have several other Alien miniatures to paint from this Kickstarter, and will probably get to those later this year.

Sunday, 26 June 2016

Eldar Dire Avengers & Farseer

Today's post has taken most of this week to put together, but pleased to say I've finished the first squad of Dire Avengers as well as a Farseer model.

I'll warn you in advance: there are lots of pictures this week!

I've put together and painted many Eldar miniatures over the years, but this is the first time I've ever built and/or painted a unit of Dire Avengers. On the box, and online, these models look nice and chunky. In real life, the sprue are really showing their age and the models might be multi-part but have very limited options. These will be my client's foot-troops basically, so I have 25 in all to build and paint, but I think most will end up looking like this. Not only is the range of options limited, but the leg poses and arms are all very similar.

In happier news, I rolled out the Spiritstone Red technical paint from GW on this squad and I think that it turned out great. It's very fast, relatively easy (although, as with all things paint-related, you need to think about the application), and looks good across a squad. I actually used Runefang Silver for the base, and it seems that almost any metallic can be used as a foundation for these paints.

Onto some individual shots...

As you might be able to see, the laser targetter on the rear back really limits the field of movement of the heads. This is a shame, but the only alternative would be to leave off the targetter.

A leaning forward attacking pose, which is probably as dynamic as this kit gets!

The exarch, with pistol and dire sword. Actually, he does look pretty epic.

Another Avenger, in stoic "at ease" pose.

Next, I also painted up the Farseer. Now, this kit is a world apart from the Avengers box. It's expensive, basically single pose, but also very, very nice. The clamshell packs from GW are over-priced, but characters like this really act as a focus for the army.

I'm going to discuss with my client about the base: it is a base extender, and he may wish for some extra basing to conceal that. The actual scenic base that comes with the kit is also really nice, and I painted it in the same colours as the regular foot-troops.

Hand out cast, you can imagine the Farseer throwing warp-energy across the battlefield...

The cloak was done in the same colours as the bone of the infantry and vehicles, and it fits really well with the rest of the army.

Here's a close-up of the helmet, hopefully showing the highlights on the black. Because there are some dark colours involved here, the model is very difficult to photograph.