During the spring I went a bit nuts and bought a load of Underworlds warbands. I recently took stock of them, and noticed that I had seven boxes of unbuilt teams! Clearly I need to do something about the pile, and I started with one of the more novel warbands, Mollog’s Mob. In this post I’ll show you the titular, grumpy leader of the lot.

I’d normally paint the unit as a whole, but I’ve noticed that the summer months are usually spent working, travelling and with the wife, and if not, the weather’s often too hot to paint. So a bit strapped for hobby time.. But I wanted to enter something for Ann’s hobby challenge, Miniatures of Magnitude. Although the challenge ran for two months, I only had around three weeks to do my entry. Hence I decided to just paint Mollog, and leave the rest of the gang for another time. Fortunately all the models have somewhat different schemes, so batch painting wouldn’t necessarily have helped anyway.

For the paint scheme I mostly followed the box art and Duncan’s tutorial. I didn’t have all the paints used in the tutorial, but I thought that the scheme had a little to much purple in it anyway (the skin and the big mushrooms). My scheme ended up a bit more blue, and with more vibrant toadstools, a combination which I have to say I like more than the GW’s versions. I also took the highlighting a little further than Duncan did, as I’m trying to push the contrast on my models. Overall, I think this might be my best work so far, and it was a joy to paint!

There were a couple of new things that I tried on this model, and of which I’m really happy about. The first was that I used Pallid Wych Flesh for all (non-metal) final highlights, something that worked really well. It seems to pull all the colors together and of course makes those highlights pop. I also tried drying retarder for the first time, and did some rudimentary weblending on the toadstools and the blue mushroom. I think I didn’t yet get the right mix of paint and retarder, but I’ll surely keep practicing with it on future models.

And yeah, in addition to painting a big model for Ann’s challenge, there was an appropriate square in the hobby bingo as well: “paint a monster”. Done!

Termagant – Experimental Color Scheme

After the Khorne guys from last post I decide to go for another quick project, and one that I painted for my wife. It’s a single Termagant model, originally from the Battle for Macragge box.

Now, my wife isn’t interested in the Warhammer/miniature hobby at all, but on occasion courteously pays attention to what I’m painting. Some time ago she asked if I’d paint her something. “Of course”, I told her, as long as she’d come up with a scheme. I gave her a choice of some models and she picked an old Termagant, or “a tiny dinosaur”. Her thought process started from a Hello Kitty scheme, but as soon as she discovered someone had already stolen her idea (Hive Fleet Leviathan :D), she wanted a python pattern on the carapace.

Ok, something that I probably wouldn’t have tried myself, but as such a great challenge! I looked at some reference photos on Google, and it turns out that there’s quite a lot of different patterns on the snakes. What I ended up painting was more of an impression than a straight up replication. I think the pattern more or less works on the back carapace, but I messed it up on the head. I also don’t know how the scheme would translate for other (bigger) Tyranid models, but as this was a one-off I don’t really have to.

The painting process itself was almost as experimental as the scheme. I used three paints to lay down the base for the skin (Steel Legion Drab, Zandri Dust and Ushabti Bone), and then used washes and drybrushing to define the model further. The carapace bits got a bit more careful approach, with the pattern design and the striations. I used some new paints, or rather inks on this model, too! I recently bought some Daler Rowney FW Acrylic Inks, and I tried them out on this Termagant. I used black on the pattern design, white to highlight and burnt umber to outline some of the carapace panels. While all of them felt like great products, the white definitely takes the cake. I don’t think my pot of White Scar will see much action any more..

So yeah, another fun little project completed and new things were learned! And what did the missus think, I hear you ask? She seemed to like it!

Bloodstoker and Bloodsecrator

It has been quite a while since I last worked on my Age of Sigmar starter set, but I’ve now finished the two lesser Khorne characters – the Bloodstoker and the Bloodsecrator (don’t you just love GW’s naming conventions? :D).

To be honest, I didn’t really look forward to painting these Chaos models due to the insane amount of details. But the AoS starter set is sort of my testing ground for “tabletop standard” and “speed” painting, I set out to paint them quickly, to a decent standard and without too much pressure. As with the ‘reavers, the starting point was an article in White Dwarf Jan ’17. However, in the end I used very little of the tutorial as is, instead employing quick techniques I’ve picked out in the last couple of years and trying some new ones as well.

I think I achieved my goals with this small project pretty well. The pair has around a week of painting days on them, and hopefully they look like I’ve put some effort into them. Here are some of the techniques/steps that I used to speed up the process: the skin is just drybrushing and washes, and the basecoats for the blacks were done with Contrast black over gray basecoat (okay, this might’ve actually slowed me down a bit). The bone bits were layered by “overbrushing” rather than meticulously going over each and every detail. Highlights on the metallic parts are very rough, and on the whole I didn’t really go back to fix “mistakes” that much.

Khorgorath’s motivational buddy finally shows up

Below you can see my progress on the starter set so far. The two leaders are yet to be built, but otherwise all the models are there. It’s looking pretty good, with 36 models painted and 11 to go, but of course this has been a slow burn project. When I’ll get back to it, I think it’s the Stormcasts’ and the Lord Relictor’s turn.

I could also use these models to claim a square in the hobby bingo, this time “adding a model to army and painting it before using it in battle”. I don’t know if I’ll ever use them for a game, but by default they’ve been painted before playing, so should count.

From the Archives: Khorgorath

This post is something of a milestone as I’m presenting the last model that I painted before starting this blog. Here’s my Khorgorath, painted back in December 2018.

If you’re familiar with the Khorgorath model, you’ll notice that I’ve modified him a bit. The original head is a weird tiny skull with an odd “headdress”, and has those bone worms jumping out of his left arm. These things make the model too busy for my liking, but otherwise I feel the model is pretty solid. I saw a conversion by Will Vale, where he had swapped the head for another bit found in the AoS1.0 starter set – a daemon skull from Khorgos Khul’s collar. I instantly loved this and promptly proceeded to copy it. I also converted the jumping bone worms to stay put in their holes, which was surprisingly simple. As the base is so large and flat, I built up some rocks and subtle elevation with greenstuff and stuck down some Stormcast bits and skulls.

When painting the model, I followed Warhammer TV’s tutorial very closely. I like the transitions from purple to red, and with Duncan’s help it was very easy to do. I remember the most time-consuming bit to be the skulls and bones on his shoulders/back, which is unfortunate as they ended up a bit boring. Some variation in bone tones would’ve worked better. Maybe some day I’ll go back.. The base was painted with my default sand/bone recipe. I tried using Agrellan Badlands on the center, hoping to achieve a dry, cracked river bed look. While the paint did crack, the cracks are so small that they’re not really visible. The shield was of course painted in the colors of the Silver Lions, the scheme of my Stormcast army.

And that’s about it for the Khorgorath. While I’ve now shown you all the minis I’ve painted since getting back to the hobby in 2017, and most of my teenage output, this is not necessarily the end of “From the Archives”-prefix. I do have a couple of old miniature projects that I’ve yet to show, so maybe those will pop up at some point. But of course, going forward most of my posts here have to be actual new content, which most likely leads to longer gaps between posts. So nothing new, eh? We’ll see how it goes, as always..

Revelators Scout Squad

I’ve finished some more models for my own Space Marine chapter, the Revelators! This time, a squad of shotgun-wielding Scouts.

So yeah, they’ve been a relatively long time coming, and I’ve shown them unpainted a couple of times already. As the construction has already been discussed, I’ll focus on the painting in this post. I’m glad to say that painting the Scouts was for the most part an enjoyable process. It was also a bit different from my other recent projects: I tried to keep them consistent with my other Revelator models, which meant no weathering and less highlights than with, for example, my Astra Rodentia or Inquisition models.

This is not to say that I don’t like the look! I’d describe the look as vanilla-GW-tabletop, and the slightly cartoony look is neat if a bit uneventful. I did however try something new with these guys, as I try to do with every project: I did their cloaks in six-color desert camo, which is about my favorite camo design. Well, to be frank, it’s more of a four-color desert, as I simplified it for the miniature form, but I think it reads well for what it should be. Might try all six colours for the sniper Scouts when I eventually get there, as there’s more room in their cloaks..

A note on the color scheme as a whole: I’m really liking that my chosen armor color of gray and the desert basing scheme allowed me to create a somewhat sensible scheme for scouts. I was a bit worried about my standard accent colour yellow, but then I realised that as Scouts don’t use company colors, I had no issues! Yeah, there’s some gold, but there always has to be some bling in Warhammer.. All in all, I think they look like an effective bunch of commandos ready for some close-quarters action.

I’m entering these guys to Ann’s April hobby challenge along with the Ork Boyz. Turned out that April was a very productive month for me, as I managed to finish eight models! Can’t even remember the last time I was able to do that. Thanks for the extra boost of motivation Ann!

From the Archives: Revelators Throwback Veteran Sergeant

It’s been quite a while since I’ve shown you an old model, but here goes.. This time it’s a slightly converted Space Marine Veteran Sergeant.

If you’ve been in the 40k hobby back in the 3rd edition times, you might notice that this (veteran) sarge resembles the one in an old metal Command Squad. I always liked that model, and once I found out that the ‘new’ SM kits had appropriate parts I decided to make myself a modern plastic version of the old guy. The parts are mostly from the Tactical Squad, but there’s also a hand (and an arm?) from the Devastators, a backpack from mkIV Marines and a bolter from 3rd ed. Tactical Squad, when they came with grips! The weapon sling is made from greenstuff, as is the soft armor on the right armpit.

One final note about the build is that this was probably the model that inspired me to spend quite a bit of time accessorising my models. Adding a bunch of pouches doesn’t seem to be high on the priority list for most hobbyists, but since I built this model I’ve added accessories to pretty much every 40k model I’ve done. Yeah, they’re very fiddly most of the time, but I think the end result makes up for that.

Some of you have of course already seen this model in a previous post about my SM Captain, also inspired by the same old Command Squad. As you might’ve guessed, I’d like to have a version of the Standard Bearer as well, and indeed I’ve been gathering up bits to build one. The head still eludes me though, so it might be a while before he gets built..

More Ork Boyz

What?! New finished models already? Somehow I’ve managed to paint a trio of ork boyz in under two weeks! While not exactly lightning speed, and surely not optimal for “getting boyz on the table”, I felt like I was making good progress. Here they are:

As I’ve already said some words about the building, this post is about the painting. The general process was largely the same as with the last two. I think I spent a bit more time on the weathering and especially on the freehand this time around, but hopefully the rest of it went a tad quicker than the first time around as I was more aware of what I should be doing. I was again a bit intimidated about the orange before I started painting it, but in the end it turned out nicely and pretty quickly. I did have to be careful when working on the clothes and other bits so as not to accidentally get paint on the finished orange, but happily I managed without mishaps. And then of course I proceeded to paint on some freehand and chipping! The latter especially is good to fix any mistakes that might’ve happened.

Speaking of freehand, I tried to come up with some other designs besides the classic checkers to mix things up a bit. There’s some triangles, or “dags” I believe, on one of the shoulder pads, and a sort of racing stripe design on one of the helmets. But of course I’m the most proud of the little “evil sun” on the back of one of the shoulder pads! I was actually going to use a decal first, but noticed that the decal would be too big for the pad. I thought: “what the heck, these are orks, doesn’t matter if it’s a bit wonky”, and ended up practicing some more freehanding. Again, it was a bit scary as I wouldn’t be able to get the same orange back, but I knew that I could hide any mistakes with battle damage. Turned out all right I think! And why the Evil Sunz emblem, you might ask? Well, as I’m doing my own color scheme I get to pick and choose! The evil sun might be my favorite, but possible future models might have a bad moon or any other clan logo on them as well, as the designs are pretty cool. Also, being orange, my orks obviously feel the call of speed at least a bit (as well as dakka and bling!).

And that’s it for my boyz, for now! With these lads done, I’ve finished all of the ork boyz from my teenage years. Well, actually I’ve still got one half-finished conversion with which I might do something.. However, while painting these orks I’ve started to seriously consider getting a new box of boyz, or lootas/burnas, just to paint a couple every now and then. Also, some time ago I got myself another bucket list model, the AoBR Warboss, from eBay! So he’ll eventually get painted as well. Just got to build him first, and come up with an appropriate base as well.

Finally, I’m entering these guys to Ann’s April hobby challenge, splendidly titled “Paint the Crap You Already Own”. While I still have the opportunity to go to an FLGS and buy new models (stocks might be low though..), I very much agree with the idea that we should all try to make our backlogs of unpainted models as nonexistent as possible. Keeping that in mind, I’ll try to get a couple more (old) minis finished before April’s through!

Poxwalkers; Experimenting with Contrast

So I’ve jumped aboard the Contrast train! I wanted something simple to test the new paints on, and what better candidates could there be than the humble Poxwalkers. These guys are also my submission to March Might & Magic painting challenge, more on which later.

I’ve been interested in the Contrast paints for some time now. Not for using them exclusively to paint minis, but to speed up the painting process in some areas. The greatest sources of inspiration for this have been Vince Venturella, Darren Latham (channel will close in May, go watch the videos if you haven’t already) and most recently JuanHidalgo with his ‘Eavy Contrast tutorial series. They all show great examples of how to use Contrast for basecoating or effects, and more traditional paints to refine and finish a model.

About a week ago I went to the FLGS and bought a box of easy-to-build Poxwalkers and a bunch of Contrast pots (not cheap..). I decided that I’d revisit the zenithal undercoating, and at the same time try out how that works for multiple figures simultaneously. Well, multiple minis seemed to be fine, but I had some problems with my rattle cans: the gray one clogged which left me with black and white only, and I ended up messing the white and creating a bit of texture on the models. (Here you can see the rest of the walkers, in their primed state.) Well, it’s Nurgle so not too fuzzed about it.. Of course, it probably affected the flow of the Contrast paint to some extent. Oh yeah, I’m using regular automotive primers, not the GW recommended ones.

Painting with the Contrast paints was very enjoyable and in about half an hour I got a model all basecoated apart from metallic parts which I wanted to do with TMM paints. The result looked pretty good actually, and if I’d have to paint dozens of these for playing games I’d happily leave them at that. As I don’t, I spent an additional half an hour per model to refine the paintjob. I layered, or rather glazed the larger surfaces of skin with Flayed One Flesh and then highlighted everything with Pallid Wytch Flesh. The pink tentacles and the orange cloth also got some layering, and the yellow pustules got a glaze of the now OOP Lamenter’s Yellow. Finally, a further 30 minutes were spent painting the metallics (Vallejo Metal Colors, Typhus Corrosion and Ryza Rust) and the base.

So all together, it was around an hour and a half per model, which I suppose is not all that quick, but I reckon a lot faster than what I could’ve done with traditional paints only. I’m calling this experiment a success, will surely use the paints for other models as well. For example, I have the Shadespire dwarf team still on my to-do list, and I now think that I’ll employ Contrast paints for the majority of the models.

I’ll also use these fellers to claim a square in the bingo: paint a model in a color scheme you don’t normally use. So far I’ve painted very few mostly naked models, much less Nurgle afflicted ones, so I think this counts. Furthermore, as I said at the start of the post, I’ll enter these models to a painting challenge organized by Ann of Ann’s Immaterium. The topic this month was “Might & Magic”, which could be freely interpreted by the painter. I see the Poxwalkers as the lowly embodiments of Nurgle’s might, and there’s at least a little magic involved as their disease-ridden bodies are blessings from a plague god.

Uriah Jacobus, Protector of the Faith

I’ve finished another model for my fledgling Inquisition collection. A model that I’ve wanted ever since I saw it as a kid, the good old Uriah Jacobus.

I got the model at the same time as the chainsaw preacher, and from eBay as well. This was right after GW had pulled Jacobus from sale, so I rushed to eBay and managed to get him at an acceptable price, albeit of course more than what I could’ve bought him for a week before. The model was properly old though, as it came in an unopened 3rd edition era blister pack, which was pretty cool.

Even if the model is positively ancient, I think it has aged really well. There are some details that are a bit clumsy, such as all the skulls, the fur, and the comically large hands, but overall ol’ Jacobus still holds up. Of course, just the pose and the concept of a “shotgun preacher” are cool enough!

Painting the model was largely similar to the last preacher. I chose to go with the studio paint scheme with this model, as I wanted to see if I could replicate the awesome skull design on the banner. While it’s not as nice as the original (big surprise, right?), the important thing is that the proportions look good to me and I’m happy with the result. Two other things I practiced while painting this model were the hot coals on the banner top and the more refined hazard stripes on the chainsword. I’m very happy with how both of these things turned out. Especially with the stripes, I feel like I’m approaching a good amount of weathering, and not over-doing the chipping.

And finally, I managed to claim another bingo square with Jacobus, this time for using a technique I haven’t mastered yet. I mean, really I could claim it with any model as even my basecoating could surely be improved, but this one is for practicing freehanding.

WIP: Modeling for days

All right, it’s high time for an update. For the last three weeks or so I’ve been on build mode whenever I’ve had some hobby time, and have now got a couple of models to show you. First up, a couple of Ork boyz! (click the pictures for slightly larger/complete versions)

The two unprimed boyz are built from bits fresh off their late-90s sprues, while the primed one is a rescue job (parts are still from the same box, though!) that I did ages ago. He’ll be painted along these two new ones, whenever I’ll get to them 😀 The shoota boyz are pretty stock builds, while the slugga boy has a number of minor adjustments, such as reposing the hands and the horns on his helmet.

Next we have my latest creations, two more members for the Astra Rodentia. These guys take me a plenty of time to create as I fiddle with most of the parts. Getting a chainsword on a right hand was quite an exercise, I can tell you! Another conversion/scratchbuild was the radio pack: I wasn’t happy with how thick the antennas were, and made some new ones from paperclips and thin wire. I also added a phone(?), haphazardly hanging from its cable. While building it, I noticed that the Skitarii backpacks would’ve had the same elements, but I didn’t want to wait for an order to arrive.

Finally, a bunch of Space Marines. The two tacticals above were actually built around six months ago, and have since been based and primed, and the sarge on the left has got his banner. I’m using this old image as I have a couple of subassemblies on them, here they’re reasonably assembled. Fun fact: the sarge was actually built around the right, open, hand that was found in the Devastators kit! I’ve also built two more shotgun scouts, which completes the squad I started building.. last summer? (where does the time go?)

I’m using the scouts to claim the conversion square in the hobby bingo. The slugga boy might’ve been a more ‘optimal’ choice, but fug it, I’ve made more progress than expected already!