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"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing" ~ Edmund Burke

Monday, 31 January 2011

Popular Paint Brand Conversion Chart

Annoyed that your favourite colour is no longer produced? check this nifty chart to find a suitable replacement (All paint brand's make their paint slightly differently so it might be out by a smidge but not enough for people to call you up on it).


Sunday, 30 January 2011

Dwarf Iron breaker painting guide

Dwarf Iron breaker painting guide

Stage 1 – Basic Preperation
Starting with a model straight from the box carefully clean away any mold lines and excess metal. Occasionally these models have sink holes where the armpit and back meet which can be filled with green stuff but thankfully I’ve not had many like this (or it’s been too small to care about). The most common mold lines seem to be on the right foot and on the hammer or axe and occasionally on the rim of the shield.

Stage 2 – Pre-Polishing
Because of the special type of spray paint I’ll be using to basecoat the model it’s wise to purchase some very fine grade steel wool and carefully smooth and polish up all the areas on the model you feel need to be shiny when painted (I tend to do just the back of the body, the top of the helmet and the back of the shield if I’m in a hurry but time and patience will always produce a better model).

Stage 3 – Paint Brands
Humbrol paints are a subsidiary of Hornby model’s which have been in the modelling industry for at least 30 years, probably a lot more (my dad remembers the trains in the 70’s; he still has a few of them). Today we will be using Humbrol Metalcote Polished Steel. It sells for between £3 and £5 for a 150ml spray can. At this point I need to specify that you CANNOT use acrylic based primers on your model and then spray this, it causes the paint to react and you won’t be able to move the grime from the paints surface when polishing it completely ruining the effect. I’ve been assured that other non acrylic based primers do work but having always just sprayed without one I can’t give you guy’s any guarantee it won’t screw up your model.

Stage 4 – Spray Base Coating
So you’ve now prepared your model and taken it to a suitable spraying area. Myself I spray models in the garage which is definitely an improvement from when I started (weighting down a Necron battalion box set with rocks on a freezing cold day so you can spray your models inside of it, is a sure fire way of getting your models so covered in paint you don’t know there asses from their elbows.) Make sure your model is not on a base and it’s shield is not attached as although the paint is entirely compatible with most brands of acrylic paint once dry you really don’t want to have to spend time re-spraying all your bases black and trying to polish up all the tiny shields so you can paint a colour over the top.
 Humbrol spray cans are very well designed and you might find yourself jumping through the roof thinking you’ve bought a CO2 fire extinguisher instead of paint. If you hold it at the specified distance on the can and spray in short bursts in one area (rotating the model slightly every few bursts) you should get good coverage. A few things I would recommend is that you:
1.      Shake that can like some crazy whacked out sucka’ for a good 2-3 minutes
2.      Wear Gloves when spraying (It is very itchy on your skin)
3.      Leave your model somewhere with a good ambient room temperature for a full 4 hour’s between coats and then 24 hour’s when complete.

Stage 5 – Post Polishing
Your little guy is now sprayed and ready to rock, if all is well and good his shield will still be bare metal, later on you can either go back and spray them black or brush coat them depending on whether you want a charcoal matte black or a slight gloss finish. Using some baby ear cleaning cotton buds you should look over your model and decide which areas you want to be polished. Areas which you smoothed out with wire wool will shine better and will be less likely to chip, however as you can see on my model areas where the paint has chipped off tend to be on raised points anyway which saved me time going back with mithril and highlighting them all, sure it sounds lazy but if it looks good why complain?
It’s also worth pointing out that as you can see on this model dwarf cannon that I hastily put together, this paint works fantastic on plastic and doesn’t chip at all. This is because the surface of the plastic (providing you gave it a bath in mildly warm water prior to spraying to get any gunk off it) is already smooth.

Stage 6 – Base Coating
Your dwarf is now appropriately polished and ‘weathered’ allowing us to apply a small number of basecoats where necessary.  Water down some Mecharius solar orange to the consistency of milk and paint the dwarfs beard and the hair coming out of the back of his helmet using this colour, then mix some Shining Gold and Boltgun Metal in about 1:2.5 ratio (you’ll need this colour later for the shield) and carefully pick out the lowest rim on the dwarfs kilt, his toe caps, his wrist, his finger guards, the line running from the back of his helmet to the front and down his nose and finally any runes you can find as well as the hammer head’s decorations. Allow all these to dry before proceeding as occasionally the pale gold needs a secondary coat so that it remains smooth and shiny.

Stage 7 –Washing and Detailing
Now that your basecoats are dry you should wash the orange beard and head hair with Ogryn Flesh wash straight from the pot all the while being careful not to get any in the dwarf’s eye sockets or on his back. When the first wash is dry gently stipple some blazing orange on to the very end of the dwarf’s beard. Wash the top of the beard and the head hair with watered down gryphon sepia so that the hair looks darker but remains orange and adds a bit of depth to it. Finally carefully pick out a few strands of hair for highlighting with blazing orange in order to complete your beard.

Stage 8 – Basing
I can’t entirely take credit for this method however I find it incredibly effective for this particular model, for other basing ideas check out this article on the GW website here. Start by slightly watering down some P.V.A glue and brushing it around your dwarf’s base (getting close to but not actually on the models feet unless you want to create the illusion that the ground is quite soft). Scatter some fine modelling sand so that it completely covers the base remembering to only tap off the excess once the glue is totally dry (this usually takes about 4 hours, use this time to tidy up any loose sand and finish off any other projects, I tend to do basing in batches so I can sand some models whilst painting another’s).  Basecoat the sand with a 1:1 mix of chaos black and codex gray. When dry, dry-brush the whole base with codex grey and then fortress grey (for a smooth transition remove as much codex grey paint from the brush without actually washing it, unless you want a nice contrast). Finally paint the bases rim with the basecoat colour and select some very small slate pieces to paint with shining gold to give the effect of tiny gold nuggets.

Stage 9 – Final Check and Completion
Unfortunately all models will suffer from the occasional chip even whilst in the process of actually painting, it’s a good idea to keep a colour mix journal so you can easily repaint your model without too much grief, when your happy get a good quality matte spray sealant and admire your handiwork.

Thursday, 27 January 2011

Things to come

This blog will overtime feature video's scoured from around the web which demonstrate interesting techniques as well as reviews of both models and populer hobby products, guides to instruct you on how to prepare and construct your models, high quality images of masterwork models and finally websites where you can purchase new hobby tools and paints as well as gaming equipment.

Aside from reposting content of other sites I and my dad will try to routinely provide you with our own simple and effective guides to achieving cool effects as well as more photographs of models we've painted and reviews of products we've used ourselves.

To kick things off I'm going to post a simple guide of how to paint a dwarf ironbreaker, here's to the future and here is a picture of the end result!

The Shadow Guard

After recieving a large number of old (I prefer 'classic' considering how well sculpted some of them were) models from a fellow Games Workshop Hobbyist my Dad carefully cleaned the models and replaced any parts that were too badly damaged to be reused. This also gave him the opportunity to include some weapons that these models were certainly not supplied with but in both his and my own opinion have added to the character of the models. Below is a selection of individual piece shot's as well as some back story as to what 'character' they now represent as well as how they were modified and painted.

All of the models in this army have a unique variation of a colour scheme my dad created in order to ensure that his army did not look like an existing chapter of Space Marines. Utilising the citadel foundation paints Iyanden darksun and Calthan brown he has created a striking contrast that is made complete with the addition of smooth neutral tones such as bleached bone on the models hood and interior robes and sharp colours such as blood red on their purity seals.
Some of you may have noticed the sepia brown lines that help frame and differentiate the colours of the shoulder pad, at the time of painting my dad was unsure how effective they would be but as demonstrated in these photograph it helps hone the edging into a tidy straight line.

Name: The Forgotten Guardian
 This models banner has a unique origin story of it's own, although I am a great fan of 40k I collect a large array of fantasy armies and as such own bitz and pieces from unusual places. The banner is infact from a warriors of chaos set that has had the chaos icon from the top removed and replaced by an imperial aquila. It's design (now the standard for my Dad's army ' The Brotherhood of the Forgotten') is a freehand painted copy of a banner found in the undead army book of 1994! (keep ahold of those old books people they make great resource material). Aside from The Forgotten Guardians banner he also bears a unique shoulder pad different from all the other models in this unit (I'll try to get a better photo of it in future posts).
Name: Leotrinites The Zealot
This model is the first of the five ‘Fighting Shadows’ that all have similar body poses. Always striving to make something unique my dad dug deep into his own bitz box and found an unused terminator arm with a cool symbol on it (that is in fact quite prevalent on his other models). Undeterred by the difficulty in resculpting it to make it fit he created a bespoke special weapon for this model to go with its blood angel power sword painted in a fantastic looking dull bronze (again with the hideous iconography shaved off and replaced, sorry any blood angels fans but you won’t see much love from me!).

Name: Venoxsis The Resolute
Using a beefier bolt gun and a Black Templar’s sword Venoxis is set out in a typical ‘come an ‘ave a go’ pose as described by my dad but also this model is firing in one direction and observing his next foe in another indicating that he is being attacked from all sides. However there’s no doubt he will come out the victor (you don’t chain yourself to a sword unless you have some serious ass kickin’ to do!).
Name: Deimoset The Devout
Similar to Venoxsis; Deimoset is armed with a Blood Angels power sword (Euck!) and an old version of the bolt pistol. Worthy of note is the red colour scheme on all of the gun’s which is a small homage to the way in which the models previous owner painted his bolt guns.

Name: Aergatz The Restless
The youngest of the unit Aergatz was taunt the principles of the brotherhood by Duthorian, although Duthorian would like to believe that Aergatz is not as headstrong as he once was, Aergatz is still eager to hunt down the dark forces of chaos. Thankfully this model show’s him with his 'Beefy bolter' at rest merely directing other marines with his sword.

Name: Duthorian The Wise
In an effort to reflect the personality of the character this model is trying to represent both weapons are shown at rest as the model is surveying the battlefield attempting to understand the psychology of his foe, his counterpart is similar but in a slightly more energetic pose. Unfortunately his individual photo was damaged but he is the furthest to the left on this group photo (he's my favourite of this unit of models, whereas for those interested in knowing Leotrinites is my Dad's.)

Below is a number of alternative angles for the group shot's showing the models in various formations.