Thursday, December 19, 2013

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone! Here's to the next one...who knows I might just get to do a bit of painting, but don't hold you breath.

Life has got pretty crazy this year and only promises to get crazier next year.

Friday, November 29, 2013

HotT Work!

This is my little nod to the HotT game by doing my own version of the front cover. It shows two armies which I plan to paint up. A heroic High Elf champion cuts a swathe through a horde of Dark Elves.

I still haven't got around to painting yet, but that doesn't mean I have stopped thinking about it and planning stuff. The good news is now I have a room with a gaming board in it, so a test game of Clash of Empires might be in order. It's a game we've been meaning to play for a least a year, but life has got in the way.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Not long now before brush town!

The new house is almost in order which means soon I can put down the big brush for painting walls and pick up the tiny brush for figures! I have been getting quite bad painting withdrawal. I keep buying war games magazines and reading Blogs that make my creative juices boil over, so I'm more than ready.

Over the last couple of years I have wandered into many different eras of history with my painting. Although this was good for keeping me going, trying to pick up the brush again has left me spoilt for choice. I have seen other artists make 'to do' lists on their Blogs and now I can see why, it gives them a little more focus and something to keep them from straying off the path. For me there are only two things that I am burning to get on with. First is the rebasing and expansion of my 28mm ACW for 'Regimental Fire and Fury'. I have read and heard great things about this game and I really want to up date my old minis so I can play it.

 The next item on my 'to do' list is to paint up some more elements for HotT. There is so much imagination in this game that It is almost overwhelming. The sheer number of elements and basing ideas are a creative's dream and I can't wait to get stuck in to those big diorama style bases.I have about eight more elements of Dwarves to do but many other classic Fantasy armies are waiting in the wings for their turn.

Still, I 'm not their yet and still have another month or so to go. Also there is a surprise bundle on it's way which may complicate my painting plans...

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Band Of Brothers

I was sent this wonderful shot of us at Leipzig the other day  and had to share it. It certainly sums up the atmosphere of the day with huge clouds of gun smoke blocking out the sun. I was a little apprehensive about going abroad to fight but now I think I'm hooked, the next one is coming up soon and is in France.

These big events are defiantly worth traveling to, for the sheer scale of them can't be matched at home.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The 3rd Prussian Brigade March to Victory.

An amazing experience and one that will stay with me forever.

Here our unit forms the center of the 3rd Prussian Brigade as we march to take a bridge at Leipzig. Pushed back three times we finally gain the ground with the aid of a Swiss regiment who changed sides towards the end of the battle.

I have been back a day already but I am still on a high from the event. Re-enacting in England I am used to seeing just a few units of French on the field, I was blown away by the numbers on the weekend. Thousands of Frenchmen in massive regiments of every shape and description.

 The noise of our Brigade charging at the point of bayonet still gives me a little shiver when I think of it.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Monday, October 14, 2013

Off to Leipzig!

I'm off to Leipzig this weekend to give Boney the boot from Germany. After his little trip to Moscow he hasn't got a lot to throw at us I hope, so I'm rather hopeful. Anyway wish me luck!

I have promised my wife a cuirassier's helmet...with the head still inside it of course. Apparently the trick is to knock 'em off their horse first, then it's as easy as killing a turtle...or so I've heard.

Friday, August 30, 2013

It's Friday! Yeeeaaaahhhhh

                                       "They're ancient Celts nan, It's what they did..."

Thursday, August 22, 2013

House News

Well, the move has gone well and lead mountain has been moved! Although I'm still drawing and sketching ideas (mostly fancy at the moment for HotT), It will be some time before I can post anything, due to my home computer and scanner being in bits scattered across the universe.

 The last few posts have been from my work computer. It's also quite frustrating trying to think about painting, knowing I have months of house work a head of me before I can even think about picking up a brush. However at least now I have a hobby room for all of my muck and mess. I will post pictures when I am up and running again. See you soon, Secundus.

Friday, August 09, 2013

Dark Elf Assassin

A Dark Elf assassin creeps closer to his prey, the enemy general.

Yes that's right, my head is still full of HotT battles and scenarios, to the point where it keeps me awake at night with ideas. I know it will be ages before I can start putting the armies together but it doesn't stop me from drawing them. My house move has been delayed for two weeks which is annoying because everything has come to a standstill. It's hard to sell a house when there's a Zing-zong battle fleet chewing up the spare room!

All my paints are now in storage together with my bases and most of my lead. So even If I wanted to paint I couldn't. However, my mind is still full of fantasy armies and battles and sometimes It spills out, hence the picture. Just a quick doodle on Photoshop but hell, I feel better for it. Now I can get on with some work.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Painting Through the Ages

 Here are a small group of Goblins I painted back in 1984. I remember meeting someone from school many years after, we got on to the subject of gaming. He laughed and said "Oh yes, everyone remembers your blue Goblins" however, I think for all the wrong reasons.I always thought blue would be different and cool...
 I think some paint stripper might be in order.
 Here we have an adventure party of Dwarves and Halflings painted again back in the early Eighties. No shading, just straight from the pot, done!

In a way I miss that old carefree approach. I think that's why I have taken to using Army Painter so readily, It's the same process just with a dip at the end. Halfling with stringed bow...nice! No bases though.

 "Give me a row of Orcs necks and an axe..." 1987 now and I've started to play around with shading. Dry brushing was all the rage back in the money making Eighties don't ya know.

I don't think they look too bad, but then I did take much longer to paint one figure back then. I think It was a time before the twenty figure production line approach.
 Bases were layered with Poly filler then pricked hundreds of times with a needle to make grass. It took ages, today I just flock and go.

Still stringing those bows...nice! These adventurers are just three in hundreds of painted figures from the Eighties, for me It was the Golden Age of Fantasy. Mind you, I had been brought up on a crash diet of Beast Master, Krull and Conan the Barbarian from an early age. Almost forgot to mention Hawk the Slayer...It that a bad thing?
 Now we find ourselves in 2013 and things have come on a little further. I have read painting books and looked at other painters blogs for tips. The results aren't that much different for 1987, only the colours are brighter and the speed of painting has increased. Nice big easy to move grassy bases now.
I am still dry brushing but use many more techniques like layering and Ink washes. In fact I think I just Ink wash everything these days...


Bases have really come into their own now and actually have become as important as the figures themselves. Lots of lovely new inventions like grass tufts are now available to really finish things off.

The Internet has come along and with it a whole world of jazzy accessories.

 Deep down somewhere in me there is still a blue Goblin trying to get out...well a kind of bluey/grey Goblin anyway. You know, for old times sake.

Also paint systems have come on in leaps and bounds. Today after spraying on an undercoat I can choose from hundreds of premixed paints to finish a job in breakneck speed. Back in the Eighties I must have had twelve paint pots and half of them would have been dried up.

Eighties paints.

Frog Retirement Fund

Over the last couple of years I have been buying the odd Fantasy figure on eBay in preparation for my HotT Armies. Slann this days seem to go for silly money and by that, I mean really silly money. As a kid I always liked the idea of giant walking frogmen, so I ended up collecting quite a force. It's a comfort to know if anything goes bad I could always sell one on ebay and buy a huge house with a pool in Spain.

The Time Capsule from 1994


I gave myself a scare yesterday when retrieving all of my old fantasy figures from the loft. I got all of the old suit cases down and started to sift through them. It was a little odd because there were so many old memories connected to them all. Every one seemed to summon up an old emotion, location or story.

After I has sorted through all the cases I realised that I was missing hundreds of figures. I searched back in the loft and resorted the cases but to no avail. You can imagine my relief when I went back to my step dad's today and found the missing case. Phew, what a relief. So here they are, the forgotten armies of King Street.

It was a little bit emotional when I finally got them home because they had been left for decades, untouched and unopened. It was a time capsule from 1994.

 My mum is long passed now but I remember sitting on the bedroom floor packing it with her (she was laughing at me because I was being very careful packing them, a trait she wasn't used to). So It wasn't just the figures that were full of memories, It was the whole box, even the tape used to close them. Very strange, a happy and sad feeling all rolled up into one.

Mark Copplestone, a name very familiar to me now but back then I would have just seen the name, High Elf Cavalry Army! I had no idea he had started that long ago. I love his work to date, with his Foundry Romans and Wild West figures, It seems I was a fan back then aswell, only I didn't know It.

 The mighty Dwarf army of Cristeel. Well I say army, can you call a box of lead an army... more a ramble really. Anyway, this is how we used to fight with them back in the day, no movement trays or big bases, just hundreds of free standing figures. Seems funny now thinking back, It took half a day to move them in a movement turn and a sudden knock of the table could result in the death of sixty figures. We don't even talk about the hills...


Zing-zong Battle Fleet Break Through Inner Defences

There is another good reason for my move...The prophecy was true...they came!

Thank god I packed up when I did, bloody Zing-zongs!

The Final Push

 These large pieces will go into more 'Really Useful Boxes' but the next size up.

 I think when I get to the new place I will only have one cabinet, the smaller one for, display.

The dusty state of my forgotten poor old figures from the main cabinet quite depressed me. I think I will keep most of them in these handy boxes, dust free and easy to get to and move around.

Finally both cabinets are packed really for the move...Phew!

Moving Lead mountain

 The Romans lead the way into the Ark.

 The make of these boxes are 'Really useful boxes' and they were perfect for what I needed.

 Funny enough, the Cybermen loved their new plastic home, It's going to be hard to get them to come out again!

 I cut areas of anti slip matting to give my tiny horde something to hang onto in the move.

The main cabinet is done... If you click on the picture you can see the spaces in the dust where the bases were. My figures are going to need a lot of dusting when I get to the new place...yaay fun!

Boxing up the Horde