Thursday, 25 July 2013

Putting brush to lead: completed, and an apology

Before getting into the meat of this post I'd like to post an apology to those of you who follow this blog and have left comments recently. In the past I have been alerted to them when they appear in my Gmail inbox. I hadn't received any notifications for a while, and given that I usually receive some comments I eventually started to get a bit suspicious, and so revisited some recent posts. What did I find, but sure enough comments had been left, so I was perplexed as to how I had missed these in Gmail. I eventually realised it was because of some new feature that Gmail had introduced whereby messages were being categorised into different sections of the inbox, and I had completely failed to recognise this. Now, I love to read your comments and the words of support, so please don't feel I've been neglecting them. I've sorted out this inbox issue and normal service has now been resumed. As for Google Gmail - I'm sure there was a good reason for the changes - but hey, if it ain't broke why try to fix it?

OK, so back in June I posted on how I had entered the painting challenge over on the BLOOD forum, with my entry being a unit of 5 classic minotaurs. Well, with the clock fast approaching the deadline I have managed to finish, and here are the results:

Time for a spot of reflection. Firstly, I'm really glad I entered this challenge. As I indicated before I have dabbled in painting the odd figure or two, but have never actually finished a figure. So a victory point for me, and a huge sense of satisfaction for actually getting these finished. Is it just me or do other people hit the "painting wall"? A bit like what runners face, but possibly slightly less exhausting? For me it comes around halfway through painting a figure (hence why I've never really got beyond that point before) when I've added most of the base coats and start with the detailing. I seem to get an urge to put the figures to one side and start on something else. So having a painting challenge as an incentive was really useful in getting through the wall.

Now onto the thorny subject of the quality of the paint jobs. Overall I'm quite pleased with how they turned out, but there are of course things I would want to improve on, and at least I'm more-or-less aware of what these are. As someone who is new to painting I keep reading advice on how important it is to be neat with your painting; I couldn't agree more! I failed to do this in many areas on my minotaurs, but at least I recognise where these are, and why I failed. Lack of skill, certainly, but also an important factor was impatience. My goal is to paint figures to a reasonable tabletop standard quickly. Give that goal I will inevitably compromise quality for speed initially until I (hopefully) get better. I didnt actually manage to paint these very quickly, but again, I think I could speed up without a decrease in quality if I was to try them again.

I'm reasonably happy with the colours I chose, and I particularly like the skin tones on 3 of the 5 minotaurs - the less orangey ones. For the skin I used Foundry's Flesh 5A/5B/5C. Man I love those paints! So easy to apply (I didn't bother with thinning) and in my opinion lovely shades. For the 3 minotaurs I prefer I started with 5A and worked up with additions of 5C to almost pure 5C. For the 2 other minotaurs I started with 5B and my desire to experiment kicked in when I then liberally washed them with GW's Reikland Flesh wash. I think I applied the wash too heavily and left the skin looking patchy. It doesnt actually look too bad in the pic above but in the hand it's not great. Back to the drawing board there then.

There's a good chance I'll be bringing these minotaurs to the Oldhammer weekend, so you'll have a chance to ridicule constructively criticise them in the flesh.

The August paint challenge has already started on the BLOOD forum - stay tuned for my next foray into the crazy world of painting lead.


  1. Well done Steve. They look ace, just the good diversity in flesh tones and hair.
    My paint wall also come at the middle of a mini and its comes in the form of another mini I want o paint... and so on.
    This challenge is a very good thing though I'm heading at a big failure if I don't focus a bit.
    Anyway, Very good Job and see you on August's challenge !

  2. These look nice. I think you are being a little too hard on yourself when it comes to your painting skills. These rank up well, look coherent together and are in keeping with the period in which they were cast. What are you going to paint next?

  3. Thanks for your encouraging words guys. Next up I've got a unit of 10 classic beastmen (50% Bob Olley, 50% Jes Goodwin) plus a unit of 5 mounted chaos warriors including a chaos champion that I'm putting together as my warband for Oldhammer weekend. I'll try to get at least a WIP shot of these up over the next few days.

  4. Had the same problem with Gmail. These new folders appeard and Google quite randomly it seemed sorted the mail between these. Luckily these could be disabled. Like your paintjob. The combination of a human-looking skin with the minotaur/bulls head make them look really evil. /Hans