Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Dark Angels Tactical Squad

Caught up in Dark Vengeance fever, I bought a boxed set a few months ago - but as ever, the painting queue meant that many of the models have taken forever to get finished!

I found the Dark Angels models to be great fun to paint - the latest generation snap kits are really something - and the Tactical Squad especially are a very nice addition to an army. The only down side is they are covered in detail and DA insignia; I wouldn't recommend buying these with the intention of removing the badges for use in another Marine army.

I chose to paint these models in the GW style, using their painting guide from How to Paint Dark Vengeance (on iPad). The only real change was to mute the choice of greens a little; the very sharp green highlights do look nice on the tabletop, but were a bit too stark for my tastes.

Friday, 25 January 2013

Nephilim Jetfighter: Simple masking techniques - Part II

Following from my earlier post on using masking techniques and spray paint, today I can show you my Nephilim with the wings attached.

As can be seen, this technique allowed me to achieve a very bright, pure white - and the coat is almost solid white! Whilst achieving this with a paintbrush is possible, it would take lots of unnecessary work.

To counterattack the very bright white, I added some minor scuffs but otherwise chose to keep the weathering to a minimum. The engines were the main exception to this rule; even if the aircraft is very well attended, surely these areas would suffer some discolouration etc.

I plan to add some insignia and decals, and complete a base, and this model will then be finished.

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Nephilim Jetighter: Simple masking techniques - Part I

When I first saw the Nephilim Jetighter, I knew that I wanted to paint one up in the GW scheme. Indeed, the Nephilim made me decide to start a new Ravenwing army! It might not be very impressive in-game but it is an awesome model, and the wings in particular present an interesting painting challenge.

Today's post is to show how I painted up my Nephilim wings using a simple masking technique and a white spray can. There are other, probably better, ways of doing this - in particular, if you have an airbrush, getting a smooth white coat can be easily achieved. I often use an airbrush for aircraft models, but decided this time to try out using a spray can.

1. Undercoat with black spray
To begin with, paint up your wings with black spray paint. You could highlight then at this stage, but I chose not to. It really is much easier if you don't attach your wings until the final stages of your model!

2. Apply Celestra Grey basecoat
Then I painted a thin layer or two of Celestra Grey over the wing pattern. Take your time and use thin coats, trying to avoid any spillage on the black areas!

3. Mask off the wing pattern
Now the important part: masking off the wing pattern. I used Tamiya masking tape, and some cheap home DIY tape. Cut the tape carefully and apply it around the pattern. The more careful you are at this stage, the better your eventual pattern will be. It sounds obvious, but anything not cover by tape at this stage will be turned white in the next step.


(Another precautionary note: I also taped the back of each wing - once the spraygun or airbrush starts, the occasional splatter can happen and you don't want white dust on the black underside of the wings - especially if you've already highlighted them!)

4. Spray wing pattern white
Now, with the wings taped up, slowly apply a layer of white spray paint. I find white sprays go on better with several light coats rather than a single heavy coat.

You should end up with something like this:

5. Allow to dry and remove tapes
Allow the paint to dry well - again, my experience of white spray is that it can take a while to dry properly. Once dry, carefully remove the masking tape...

You may find that some areas need touching up, which is easily done with white or black paint as necessary.

Next up will be the Nephilim with wings attached - but for now, here's a shot of the jetfighter main body...

Sunday, 20 January 2013

"I got signals all around - they're coming out of the walls!"

I'm starting to have nightmares about Tyranids. Those carapaces, claws and eyes...

That's what happens when you paint up 40+ gaunts! Today's post is to show the next group of Tyranids I've painted up. My client has an army with two Tervigons, so a healthy supply of termagants is essential.

As before, I chose to concentrate on the carapaces in terms of detail - with the skin tones relying on washes and a single highlight layer. I think this works well; I'm going to reserve more extensive skin highlights for the larger beasts. To add more detail to the bases, I used some vegetation tufts and some static grass.

I'm going to take a break from termagants for now - I have another 16 to do - and should shortly start work on one of the monstrous creatures.

And here is a group shot of all of the gaunts I've painted so far - I particularly like how their carapaces are so striking from a tabletop-distance.

Next up will be a personal project - I couldn't resist getting a Nephilim Jetfighter for my new Ravenwing project...

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Knight Models: Batman Arkham City

When Knight Models announced the Batman Miniatures Game last year, I instantly knew that I would be buying into it! The Preview shots only confirmed my first impressions...

Although the English version of the rules has not yet been released, Arkham City is going to be a skirmish-level Batman miniatures game, involving a handful of figures on each side. There are currently two waves released, but my focus has been Batman himself.

Painting this model was a bit of a departure from my usual techniques. I decided to use grey/blue to highlight the cape, to enlarge the colour pallette.

Overall, I'm glad that I did - I think using grey would have created a more boring miniature. I did think about using a resin base, but decided that the model was expensive enough without investing in a base as well!
Next up maybe Nightwing, or possibly Catwoman - hoping for more Knight Models releases soon...

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Ebay: Imperial Guard Trench Fighters

I recently finished a squad of Imperial Guard troopers, and have now decided to put them on Ebay.

Originally, I planned to make an army of troopers in this style (using Maxmini's gasmask heads) but I've since decided I have far too many Guard armies!

The squad is well painted, based, and converted with the Maxmini heads. It includes 3 flame throwers, a sergeant and vox caster. It would be ideal for use as a veteran unit, and could be added as an ally to an existing 40k force!

My long-term plan was going to be to mount the unit in a Chimera, and give them the Demolitions doctrine - they'd pack quite a punch!

Here's the link to the Ebay auction:

(For some reason beyond me, Google has stopped letting me upload photos to my blog - if you're interested, the auction has full pictures of the unit!)

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Happy New Year: New Tyranid Project

Happy New Year all. Let's hope that 2012 will be a better one...

Today's post is to showcase the beginnings of a new commission project that I have previously mentioned. I'm building and painting up 2000 points of Tyranids, featuring plenty of gants, tervigons, a tyrant, carnifexes and much more... The project doesn't have a strict timescale so I'll be taking each unit in my stride, but my first goal is to paint up the gants.

The plan with these models was to paint them to a good standard, but using a scheme which could be replicated on 60+ gants. I chose to focus on the carapaces, where the bright blues can be quite striking. The skin tones were kept quite muted in contrast (they look brighter in real life though). For the monstrous creatures and bigger beasts, I will be working up the skin tones to an even brighter shade.