Saturday, August 29, 2015


So time for my first blog post following the challenge.  This should technically be my second blog post, but I have a good reason for missing it.  Here it is:

Last weekend I was in the Chicago-land area participating in my other hobby of running.  I got to run 3 nautical miles on the Great Lakes Naval Base, and it was a wonderful experience.  The base was great to see, and part of my run took me right up to the shore of Lake Michigan.  I will definitely be doing it again next year, and with luck I'll be doing the 10 nautical mile run!

But you didn't come here to hear my tales of running.  No no, you came for the minis:

I've started to resume my usual practice when I have a commission of this size, which is to spend at least 30 minutes each night painting.  It may only result in one layer, but steady progress helps me go forward.  I also end up spending more time than the 30 minutes.  So let's dig in:

The first two pics are the base layer of dark green and a bit of highlighting.  One of my big worries was how the colors would look, and I felt that looking at the color here that these guys could be right out of an episode of Robotech.  There is something very satisfying about getting a color right when painting.

One of my standard tactics is to do a wash or two.  Usually I'll do it to help smooth over the layers, add some definition to the recessed areas, or to help darken a color that is too bright.  When I asked my friend what color he wanted I was told dark green, and that's what I'm going with.  If you look closely at the pics you'll see that there's two styles of shading.  In one of them I'm doing a bit more lining/highlighting, and the other has me trying to shade plates more to help create a sense of lighting.  After some consideration I have decided to go with the more lining/highlighting style.  It's what I'm good at practiced with and I feel that it looks better overall.

These last pics show off the progress I've been making.  With the green done I've started on the white part.  I've said it before that white looks better as the top layer/highlight of whatever you're painting, so the, "White," that you see is actually a grey called weathered stone (also one of my favorite colors to use).  Up next will be me putting in the actual white, and moving on to the misc items (feet, gun, visor, and so forth).  Look for finished pictures next week!

Thursday, August 13, 2015

The Heat is On!

Lately I haven't been doing as much painting.  While I have been doing other stuff, I feel that I have neglected my hobby and my blog.  My fellow painter and friend, Matt, has also been lacking motivation.  Through our frequent conversations we both came to find out that we have a small pile of unpainted miniatures (about 29).  So Matt decides that competition is a great motivator and issued a challenge:

That's me on the right

The Goal:  Paint 29 miniatures before the other person.  Make at least 1 blog post a week if not more
The Stakes:  A care package of goodies from the other's respective country.
The Start:  August 15th
The End:  However long it takes.

We both have the same amount of miniatures, but not the same type.  My 29 miniatures are all Robotech.  Here's my lot:

A more comprehensive list might help(NOTE - I grew up with Robotech and use the older terminology and not the new ones given in Robotech RPG Tactics):

5x Veritech Battloids
5x Guardian Mode Veritechs
5x Veritech Fighters
2x Spartans
2x Raider X's


6x Battlepods
2x Artillery Battlepods
1x Recon Pod
1x Officer's Battlepod

So far my miniatures are ready to go aside from some primering I plan to finish up tomorrow.  Otherwise it's a matter of figure out what to paint when so as to keep things interesting.  There is a LOT of veritechs in various shapes, but I've got a Forest Green/White Trim scheme in mind, and if I don't mix it up then things will get stale REALLY fast.

Overall the challenge is going to be slightly balanced.  My miniatures are all decent sized on 40mm bases, but with no basing.  My opponent's are a mix of sizes consisting mainly of 30mm but with some 50mm thrown in.  His are all based as well, which will add more painting time to the mix.  All in all I think we're equally matched.

There are no losers in this.  The ultimate goal is for us to re-invigorate our passion for painting and to make a dent in our respective backlogs.

That being said I'm looking forward to some German chocolate :D

Sunday, August 9, 2015

A (Hopeful) Return to Writing

So it's been a long time since my last post.  I have run in a race, gotten surgery, struggled with depression, and tried to muddle through as best I can.  Unfortunately I have not been painting as much as I'd like.  I have managed to make some headway, and plan to share that with you now.

My primary focus is getting a large commission of Robotech miniatures done.  So far I've gotten the lot assembled (the complexity of the Wave 1 Kickstarter models is something I have grumbled about endlessly), and out of the 33 models I have completed...four.

Painting robots has required a different approach from painting normal models.  The big thing is that there's plating, which doesn't shade as well as the folds of clothing or armor.  The lighting is a bit different and that's a challenge.

My theory on this so far is to try to get the light hitting the right areas.  I start with a base coat, mix in the mid tone and hit a lot of the raised/visible areas, and then top it all off by mixing in the highlight and picking out the uppermost areas.  It's going to take some fiddling, but I'm starting to get into the swing of things already.

Let's take an in-depth look at the Gladiators I painted.  For the most part I've been asked to do the classic paint schemes for all but the veritechs in the lot of Robotech figs.  The main color on the gladiators is green.

Whenever I paint a model that has a large portion in the same color (in this case 80%) it becomes difficult to discern progress.  I like a dark base coat and then picking out the medium and highlight layers, but when your target color is in the medium range it takes a while before you begin to truly appreciate your progress.

Even though there wasn't a lot of white as soon as I started applying it I felt like the model had finally begun to come to life.  It still surprises me how much of an effect you get when you add a little color to a model that is almost entirely monochrome.

The colors for the gladiators were: Green, White, Red, and Gray.  In that order of use.  I have to admit that I'm quite fond of the end result.  When I get around to painting my own models I'm debating about whether or not to use the standard schemes or try my own.  These make me want to try this out again.

I wanted to get these guys finished up for a very specific reason.  A friend of mine has challenged me to a paint off starting August 15th, and I have accepted.  I'll be posting more details later this week, but it's a great motivator to get more painting (and blogging) done.