Friday, July 25, 2014

More Progres More Minis

The clock is ticking down to Gen Con, and I'm painting full steam to get everything done.  Up this week - Purifiers and Isabeau:


Purifiers



The Purifiers weren't that difficult to paint up overall, but were still a little on the smallish size.  What this means for me is that it requires a little more precision, and usually ends up with a few muttered curses when I have issues maneuvering my brush to hit the hard to reach areas.

The other piece I painted up is the Purifier Officer, Isabeau:




Not too shabby if I do say so myself.  I've got a thread on the SPM forums for my finished pieces to share with my fellow RK fans, and one of them mentioned that her eyes were not up to my usual level.  I wanted to brush this off, but he was right.  I went back and started the face over again fresh.



The end result here is much more passable.  I'm not completely satisfied with it, and I don't know if I need to go back again or if it's just my difficulties with having the sculpt fully assembled.  If I do go for the repaint I may just pick up the metal version and avoid the difficulties of the sword.  The reason why is that the eyes in that pic are starting to go 3D because all the layers are starting to create a bulge.

I've already started work on my next piece, and it's really coming along.  The way it's turning out is make me consider going back and doing more work on all my Shattered Swords so far.  Here's a small teaser that I shows a little bit of the work I had started on, though not the part that's making me want to go back and add more (that comes later):

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Pair-a-gons

Last week was busy both in terms of painting and work.  I got stuff done but didn't get it posted, and now I gotta go back and touch up some stuff from this past weekend.  So today you get the finished Paragons!



As you can see they both look pretty awesome, but it was a rather arduous journey to get them finished.  When I finally got my Relic Knights order in I was quick to assemble most of my Shattered Swords so I could start getting in games before Gen Con (of which I have only gotten one in).




While I was prepping the Paragons to be assembled I noticed that they would be difficult to paint if fully assembled first; so naturally I assembled them anyways.  I've always been a fan of giant robots/power armor, and the Paragons' artwork really got me excited for the models.




Part of me wanted to just rush through and get these guys done quickly so I could get to the rest of the models, but the more I painted them the more I realized that I wouldn't be satisfied if I didn't give them my full.  I started with the base layer, hit it with a dark blue wash, and then went for a very light grey:



Every time I use my a light grey it always looks white, and that's exactly why it's my mid-color.  Once you start putting on the actual white as the highlight the armor really starts to shine. 



How to paint both black and white is one of the more common questions I hear when it comes to painting miniatures.  As you can see, the trick to painting white is to remember that actual white-white is the brightest you can get, which means your middle color needs to be close but not actually pure white.

Here's a group pic of what I have done, which is also the Shattered Swords starter set:

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

A Knight and his Bird

I made some good headway on my Relic Knights over the weekend.  Finished up my first Questing Knight with his Esper, Mallory and Quill, from the starter set:





I'm very happy with how Mallory came out with one exception: His cape.  I painted his cape along with the capes for the Swordsworn, and Isabeu, but while painting Mallory himself I ended up making the highlights on the cloth around his shoulder a little brighter than the cape.  I went back and tried to lighten up the cape, but the more I look at it the more I see myself fixing it when I next break out those colors.

Some of you may have noticed that Mallory looks a bit stunned.  While I did not intend for him to end up like this, I did intentionally leave it that way because it makes me think of Batman:



There's a small gap between Mallory's lips, and I put a little black in there with the hope that it would look like he was making a warcry.  Instead his mouth is now locked in shock and astonishment because it makes me think of Batman.

Quill came out well overall:




I was wanting to do more with him, but couldn't figure out where to actually add more pizazz.   I left the eyes white as the fluff is that Espers are pure energy from one of six aspects that takes a solid form, and the idea of him having energy eyes pleases me.

Over the long weekend I started work on the Paragons.  I got the base coat done, and then washed, and I started to put the next layer of grey down, and it was tedious!  Thankfully I can see that it's going to look pretty damn awesome:




That's about three hours worth of work.  I've been dragging my feet on the second one because I'm worried it'll take an equal amount of time and I don't want to do it in two sessions.  Looking at him earlier today though I think he will be easier to paint since he is in a standing pose as opposed to Mr. Action-shot up there.  Maybe I'll give it a go tonight...

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Relic Knights on Deck

So the unboxing has passed, and time has been spent assembling, priming, and now painting my Relic Knights.



Those are just of a few of my Shattered Sword pieces.  For those wondering why the big guy in the back is missing an arm it's because I opted to leave it off until I got the full thing painted as it got in the way of some detail.  I'm hoping to play Shattered Swords at Gen Con 2014, so most of my pictures are going to be focusing on them.



Getting the mold lines off the pieces is slightly easier than the Sedition Wars models, and I have to wonder if that has to do with their placement.  Speaking of which the placement does actually seem to be better for these models as well.



The first part of my cadre (as your group is called in Relic Knights) is just a simple squad of Sword Sworn.  I wanted to tinker a bit with the colors using white and blue as my primaries with gold as a backup.



The capes came out very well, and what you see above is all the loose capes for my Shattered Swords.  I decided to just sit and spend an evening getting them painted and get them out of the way rather than coming back and doing a little here and there.  Overall they look nice, but here's how they look when attached to the Sword Sworn:




I think the gold can work really well as a light trim, but I think it'll be a fine line between heroic warrior and minor league baseball team.

I picked up a small commission to strip the paint from some OGRE infantry a friend picked up.  This will eventually lead to another OGRE painting commission I'd wager.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Relic Knights Unboxing

IT'S HERE!  IT'S FINALLY HERE!!!



After waiting nearly two years I've finally received my Relic Knights miniatures.  I ordered a whole bunch of minis, and spent hours last night going through and inventorying them to make sure I got everything.  Aside from missing inserts, and some pieces that are missing that has become a known factory issue everything is there!

I'm taking pic requests over the weekend for the SPM forums while I begin cleaning and assembling some of these pieces for Gen Con, which I'm sharing here. 




With luck I'll have some paint on before the day is out.

After looking over things there I'm pretty satisfied with the minis.  There is a lot of variance in both detail and scale though.  Some minis are smaller physically and in scale, which is going to make it difficult to assemble and paint.  Thankfully there are more good miniatures with some pretty sweet detail.  Overall, at a glance, there is softness to the miniatures, and it's a mixed bag what you'll get.




Now I'm getting back to cleaning and assembling.  I'm still deciding what I want to do for a color scheme for my Shattered Swords, and I'm leaning towards white.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Gamers Kickstarter Miniatures

After a long wait I finally got my swag from the Gamers 3 Kickstarter, the most anticipated of which was the miniatures of the fantasy counter-parts from Gamers 2: Dorkness Rising.  The only non-Gamers 2 miniature I got was The Shadow, whom the group is shown dueling with at various points in Gamers 3:



Pretty standard looking bad guy, and not too shabby.  Let's explore the rest of the party then.  Both the male and female versions of Luster were included, and they look pretty accurate compared to their real-life inspirations.



Up next we have Flynn The Fine and Brother Silence.



Flynn the Fine is looking a lot better than his prior version, but Brother Silence looks a bit off.  His face is contorted in what I'm assuming is a martial arts yell, but it looks a bit ape-like.  I think it'll paint up nicely though, and hopefully convey what I think it's trying to.

Last up are Sir Osric and Joanna, both are the only multi-piece figures in the set.  Joanna is looking pretty close to the movie costume, but I get the feeling she'll be a little tricky to paint up.  Sir Osric is in two pieces, and is the most disappointing of the group.  He's got the sword, but is missing the cape and shield.  Both of those are with him throughout the movie, so I don't know why they got overlooked.  I'll have to sit down and try out a bit of grey stuff and see if I can't mold my own.



All in all I'd say the miniatures were a worthwhile buy.  $20 for six miniatures in metal is a pretty low price at a time when companies are switching to plastics due to the high cost of metal.  The sculpting is good and will paint up nicely.  One downside across the minis is a bit of a fuzzy/unrefined look that seems to be from the casting/mold process.  This could go away after they've been cleaned up and painted, or it may not.  I'll just have to paint them up and see.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Friendly Work

With confirmation that Relic Knights is at the warehouse and getting sorted before shipping I'm feeling glad that I got my last minute commissions finished up.  First we'll start off the piece featured previously, but now completed:






This miniature is just like my Mei Fang crew, where the eyes are super tiny (barely more than slits).  The friend I painted this for requested eyes, and so I painted some lovely eyes on her (she's watching you).  I added a bit of OSL from the fire coming from her staff which turned out a little more subtle than what I was wanting, but that's ok because I'd prefer it to be more subtle than to have it be overbearing.

Up next is another go at my sweetheart, Kaeris.  This one is for the same friend who gave the awesome suggestion for a sakura tree on the kimono of Kirai, and the idea for this Kaeris was just as good.




Shining wings, firey red hair, and a union jack on the back of her trenchcoat.  I could easily see Kaeris in this outfit, and that made it so easy to paint!  Let's take a look at how I got here:



Skin, hair, pants & shirt.  Also the wings.  My previous entry I used her to test the chrome silver, and here I've gone ahead with a black ink to help get the recesses.



When I was originally asking for how she was to be painted I was told, "white or silver."  I decided to take things to the next level.  After the wash I added a layer of bright silver to give definition, and then highlighted it with Reaper Master Series pearl white.  RMS' Pearl White is a white metallic reminiscent of their silks and satins line, and it blended beautifully with the metallic wings.

Up next is the start of the Union Jack.



So I tried to get close to a navy color without being too dark.  The color I used for this one turned out a little shinier than I wanted.  After some decision making I decided to give it a wash of GW's Drakenhof Nightshade to dull it up a bit while following up with some highlights.



Much better!  Looking at the pic though you can definitely tell that it's a bit rougher.  I went with another wash to smooth it out, and then I hand-painted the colors for the Union Jack, and was ready to call it a day.  Overall I'm pleased with how she turned out.  Kaeris is truly a miniature that looks good no matter how you paint her up.