Monday, December 30, 2013

Have paint, will travel

Just wanted to share with you all my latest mobile painting station and something I acquired as a Christmas gift.

You may remember these Sterlite containers from my mobile painting last year.

One for figures and one for paints and brushes.
 Following the debacle of the figure container last year, I tried a new plan. I had bought a few foam cushion inserts from the craft store. Initially I was going to carve voids out of a 2" section, but could not find the long snap blade razor I had, nor could I find one to buy. I had also bought a 1" cushion, so I put two chunks of that inside.

22 goblins and 1 half orc
 I was able to fit 23 figures in there and they are held completely immobile when the lid is latched.

For the paints, I put most of them in ziploc bags but also a few in a smaller container that I had purchased for the wet palette mark 2.

Paints, Brushes and magnifier light.
In this last picture you can see the contents of the last plastic container. You can also see that I transferred several of my craft paints into the 15mL squeeze bottles.

Contents of the brush box.
 The pictured brushes were utter crap. I used them to base coat goblin flesh, but they were a royal pain.

I asked for some Reaper Learn to Paint kits for Christmas and received the Intermediate Flesh Tones. I was also given Basic Armor ad Fur, but it didn't make it due to the holiday shipping delays.

 I'll do an unboxing when I get it back at home. We shipped it with the kids presents to not have so much to bring on the plane.

And finally, my son's birthday is coming up and he wanted to build his own plane model. He will be turning 8 and I thought a snap tite model was just the ticket. We initially were going to buy an F-15 Eagle, but the boxes were dented so a quick rummage on the shelf found this A-10 hidden away. I'll be sure to post the lad's progress.

Also pictured are some more crap hobby brushes. These are marginally more useful than the others.

I hope to have a year end review tomorrow.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas

Hi All,

Just wanted to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, or whatever year end holidays you observe.

I will be gorging myself on too much food as we celebrate with my family and my wife's family together down in Stockton, CA. I hope you get most of what you wished for and are able to enjoy this time with family. I know I will.

And now for some thematically appropriate scantily clad women.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Analogue Painting Challenge, First Blood

Hi All,

I finally got something finished and entered into the Painting Challenge over at Analogue Hobbies.

Here is what I wrote for my entry:

"For my entry into this weeks themed challenge I give you the Ordine Posta Reiciendis. Brothers Postumus, Raimundus, Ricardus, Franciscus, Leopoldus Maximus, Sergius, Ioannes and Johannes. (Apologies to Dave and Smiffy, I only had 8 figures). The Bishop has been after them as they spend more time transcribing the Atque Ius Belli rather than the churches teachings.

These 8 1/72 (20mm) monks are from the Pegasus set 7051, California Mission Indians. I thought they would be useful for everything from Dark Ages, Fantasy to the Old West.

I chose to do them up as Franciscans because, to me, they are the most monkish looking. My main deviation from reality was the gold crosses. I just wanted to add a little more contrast to the figures.

The techniques used were very simple color blocking with highlights added to the robe folds, then washes applied. Time was my main enemy on these as I was simultaneously working on another unit, which I failed to finish. Strong language and a hair dryer were utilized as I worked down to the last minute before leaving for the airport. Had I more time I would have done a tad more highlighting and dry brushing. While I'm not totally happy, I am glad that I have another 8 figures to call done."

I'm sorry about the depth of field on these. As I mentioned I was perilously close to being left behind for our holiday trip and snapped these pictures just before putting on my coat. I had used the portrait setting on my camera, but realize now I should have used landscape. If I was doing atmospherics I would go with the macro (flower) setting. Someday I'll learn how to do it all manually.

The main wash I used was my homemade Burnt Umber on the robes. I think it worked pretty well but I see my coverage wasn't perfect. I used the Citadel Flesh wash on the skin and that caused the most salty language. I seem to have real difficulty applying that brand with a consistency that I like.

Hopefully Posties rejects will like what I've done. I figure it could earn me either a pint or a kick in the crackers should we ever meet face to face. I had some ideas about who was who but they got a tad randomized in my rush to photograph them.

With the theme bonus I earned a whopping 82 points towards my goal of 1000. It feels good to have the first entry in.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Dice Games

Hi All,

  Had a nice visit with my cousin and her family and got in some rousing games of Zombie Dice and Cthulhu dice. Both of these games come from Steve Jackson Games and I have mentioned them before.

We have played Zombie Dice before at home and this time it was with a fairly large group. I think it was 8 people. To me this is a little too large as it slows down the game a tad. Still fun, just not as quick.


Cthulhu Dice, however, really shined. My son and I had tried to play just the two of us and it was meh. With a group of people at a party it is a ton of fun. My son also rigorously enforced the house rule of flipping your lip with your finger and gibbering when you lose your sanity. Good wholesome family fun with the Elder gods. We had several games where only Cthulhu won, and I suspect my brother's girlfriend may be an actual cultist.

Watch out for my Analogue Hobbies painting challenge entry tomorrow.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Holidays have begun.

Hi All,

Well I successfully finished my first entry into the challenge before boarding the plane and am now enjoying the holidays with my family. I sent my email to Curt today for the themed challenge tomorrow, so it will be a couple of days before I can post it here. I'll save my commentary until then.

As an aside, I noticed that I've been getting a few hits for people looking for "tits" or "big boobs". All I can say is welcome to the blog and I hope you aren't too disappointed.

And as for pictures of my figures. Please be patient, they're coming. For now I'll leave you with a picture of my 1000 point Ninja Army at night.


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Followers, Challenge progress and Holiday Games

Hi All,

I have forgotten to welcome some new followers to the blog, so today I'll start with that.

Welcome to:

1/72 Figures collect & paint from the blog Collect & Paint Figures 1:72 has some very nice Zvezda Russian Knights on the top post right now.

Millsy, I know I know you from somewhere but you don't have a link in your friend connect. So please let me know what your blog is and I'll post a link. Is from the blog Cannister & Grape and a fellow challenge member.

Legion games, ditto. I've seen your avatar around but can't recall your blog.

Challenge Progress:

It's all a blur. What is this day 4? I've been slogging through my feed reader, but can't seem to get closer than a day behind on reading. I am going ahead and reading Analogue Hobbies to try and stay up to date on the entries, but it's a bit of a distraction.

So what have I done? Well on Saturday, my last day to prep, I spent most of the day working on the holiday calendar I mentioned.

Some interesting travel plans in March.

It came out fine and I've already gotten it back form the printers but it killed my chances of prepping all my models for the challenge. I did, however, earn enough brownie points that I was allowed to paint most of the day Sunday. Since I was banned from San Soo by SWMBO I tried to put my time to good use. So 18 figures based, 8 also base coated.

Monday flesh om the 8 and metal on the 10 blocked in. Tuesday, fiddly bits on the 8 blocked in, I did something on the 10 but I can't remember. Also started cleaning up the Post Apocalypse themed minis. Had the usual inner dialog. "Is that flash or a weapon?" "Grow a pair and cut it!" (snip) "Aww crap it's a weapon!" (look at reference photos online) "Phew, it's not a weapon." "Cut off the other one you wuss!"

Wednesday (today), blocking in flesh on the 10 figures and finished clean up of the Post Apoc figures. I am realizing that I have to get it in gear to have these ready before I leave for Holiday on Friday night.

You may have noticed that  I did not give you pictures of my work in progress. I am trying to let Curt be the first to unveil these, so I don't want to spoil it. For these ones I also haven't been taking progress photos. (Maybe I should.)

We have also been allowed to open Eldritch Horror as an early Christmas present. So far it has been difficult. As usual a giant board and a ton of cards and pieces make it a little unwieldy. We are close to either being devoured by Azathoth or winning the game.

I've also got my brother tapped for our annual game play extraveganza. I'm going to bring Death Angel and ATZ-FFO and play with the City deck and Zombies game pieces. I'm also try to decide if I want to throw in Swordplay and some paper figures. I also have to pack figures and paints etc so I can keep up with the challenge. Man am I behind.

I almost forgot. My prize from Stefan of Monty's Caravan arrived on Monday. Woohoo, an early Christmas!

Friday, December 13, 2013

1000 points! (What have I done?)

Hi All,

  Well I'm going to commit to 1000 points for the painting challenge. I made a chart, printed out a four month calendar and started looking at what I had to paint. What's sad is that I am nowhere near painting all of my old stuff, let alone tapping into as much of the new stuff as I fantasized about.

I have put up a new page with a chart detailing my painting list and the points I project to receive for each completed unit. You will note that some of the figures are annotated as started. Before you cry foul, bear with me. I am including these figures in the tally because they are part of how I originally envisioned said units when I created them all those years ago. I had asked Curt a series of questions and shown him a picture of some semi completed figures as an example of ones I would not consider for the challenge. He said that the main point of the challenge was to have fun and get things done and that he would consider started figures at a penalty. So with that in mind I decided to include these two at a possible 1 point a piece. Perhaps they are too painted for even that, but no matter they are what they are. My intention is to take a start picture of each unit and send it along with my entry photos, as well as post it on my blog when I amaze you with my painting skill ;). I hope that fellow challenge members will trust me and Curt's final judgement on the matter.

Here is a sneak peak:

Themed figures

Entry figures

Old lead (and plastic) for Oldhammer

I also did receive one good piece of news from the doctor. My bi-annual chest x-ray showed no more stuff in my lung. So almost one year from learning of my contracting Valley Fever I appear to be in the clear. I count myself fortunate in that regard.

And while it may technically be safe for work, I suspect you would have to go through some sensitivity training were you caught looking at this video of the lovely Ashley Salazar.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Long time, no update

My last post was over a week ago, but it feels like ages. I wish I could say I've been productive, but I find myself flailing about more than usual as I try to wrap up various time sensitive year end projects.

These include:

  • Making a calendar with pictures of the kids to give to family members
  • Printing out mailing labels for the annual Holiday cards
  • Going through the thousands of pictures from the Flag football season to get a few good ones
  • Putting up the Christmas decorations
The calendar I've been making since not long after my daughter was born. Initially it was meant to be something mainly for my wife's grandmother and to satisfy my nerdy impulse to make a calendar that had all the Chinese lunar dates and holidays on it. I began to lose interest in doing it several years ago, but apparently no one in the family buys calendars any more. I've since pared it down a bit by only including the major holidays and luni-solar events, and I send it out for printing instead of doing it myself. The rest is fairly mundane and self explanatory.

I quickly lost my painting mojo with what felt like a whirlwind of activity. Really it was only a resumption of normal activity. School and extra curricular. So I have nothing to show for prep on the challenge or for the game I must play before going on holidays.

One thing I did do, however, was re-install vassal on my new Surface Pro 2. The Surface is Microsoft's latest tablet PC running Windows 8.1 and so far I have been enjoying it. Thus far I have used it for just about everything that I was using my 15.6" ASUS laptop annd my Kindle Fire for. I have GIMP installed and Netflix and Kindle for PC. I think I would agree with reviews that it is a tad unwieldy as a tablet, but it is an extremely convenient laptop.

But I digress. I put Vassal on there to see about playing games on it over the holidays. I may have mentioned before that I want to play out a sort of faux Great Patriotic War campaign using Blitzkrieg for strategic movement and play out the combats using Memoir '44, or rather M'44 stuff with Bob Corderey's latest rules. But I need to add stuff onto the modules so we shall see how that works.

Time to think about projects and how to achieve them. You also may have noticed, should you look at such things, that I've updated the games played to show a few games of Zombie Dice (very fun) and that last Rally Round the King (RRtK) battle I played back in October(?).


I started writing this over the weekend and it felt a bit rambling. I was going to rewrite it and try to make it coherent but in the meantime I've had a bit of bad news. I've somehow given myself hematuria. It's not painful but I wouldn't look it up if you are squeamish. I went for a run and when I got home experienced the symptoms, which quite frankly freaked me out. Apparently this can happen to long distance runners, which I don't consider myself. There is some evidence of kidney damage and perhaps muscle involvement, so it's not of the garden variety. So once again no exercise and a bunch of tests. The one bright side is I saw a new doctor at the practice and she is quite young and attractive.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Willpower ... and lack thereof

Hi All,

Well I've managed to remain strong in one aspect, I have resisted the very strong temptation to buy more figures. I've made the conscious decision to get cracking on that old Citadel lead, much of which is even primed, instead of buying a whole bunch of stuff and painting that. The only things I plan on buying are the entry figure for the challenge and some bases for the Conquest Normans I won from Mike at Trouble at T'Mill. Why? Because I'm going to use them for Oldhammer, silly.

As for board games though, I have shown the exact opposite of willpower. In my defense I had a 30% off coupon to Barnes & Noble and they were having a buy one get one 50% sale on games this weekend. So I got Axis & Allies 1941, Munchkin Deluxe and Munchkin Unnatural Axe. In addition I got 10% off each game for being a member. I rationalize these as sort of also being presents for the kids who like to play games. Sort of like Homer buying Marge a bowling ball for their anniversary.

Then in the mail today I received a catalog from Fantasy Flight. So much for pretense. They are having a sale until December 9th on select titles here. Age of Conan, which I bought last year (and still haven't played), is $25 and Fortress America, which I played with a friend in the 80's, is also $25. But the game that really caught my eye is Eldritch Horror.

I also haven't done any painting in a couple of days, but I did wash up some plastic zombies and survivors that are ~45mm. Sorry Curt, I'm sure you'll figure out how to score that.

Sorry for the lack of pictures, I've got a lot of distractions and in-laws looking over my shoulder.


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