Monday, December 29, 2014

Solar Auxilia Command Complete

Just before Christmas, I finished painting the two commander models for my Solar Auxila HQ choices. First up was the Lord Marshal (above). When I built my Vostroyan army during the Medusa V global campaign, I never actually got around to finishing this model. I'm not sure why, but he has been hanging out on my painting tray ever since, biding his time. His patience has been rewarded and he is now complete.

The second commander is the Strategos for my Auxilia Tactical Command Section. Built primarily from the Tempestus Scions set, he'll fit in nicely with my army.

And here he is, fitting in nicely with the Command section. : )

Next up for these guys? Painting up two more lascannon teams so that I can field these three as a battery of Tarantulas with twin-linked lascannons. And it's a Fast Attack choice in the Solar Auxilia list : )


Friday, December 26, 2014

The Infamy Miniatures "Post Kickstarter"

You may remember a couple of my posts earlier in the year about Infamy Miniatures and their excellent Kickstarter. Well, I've still been plugging away at a few things, and recently received an early Christmas present from Infamy's James Griffiths. James sent me a couple of the first casts of some characters I've been very keen to see.

I've already mentioned my desire to build a gang around The Toad, dockside crime boss extraordinaire! Well James' gift spurred me on to completing the build of The Toad, which you can see below.

And I also completed the build for the Quaker (a walking robot toting a nasty electrical gun) and Mole, a fierce fighter used to digging through subterranean London.

If you saw my posts about the Infamy Miniatures Kickstarter, but didn't jump in, you still have time to join in as part of the Post-Kickstarter Backer Kit. James has left the Backer Kit open until January 5th, so head to his website HERE and join in. I've already selected my 20 models. Which ones will you choose?


Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Solar Auxilia - Leman Russ Battle Tanks

With Christmas day rapidly approaching, I thought I'd put these up on the blog in the hope they are a good omen for my gift opening tomorrow. For the first time in a long time, I've actually asked my family for something specific, in this case some Solar Auxilia Dracosan transports!

Anyway, I pulled out the three Ragnarok-style tanks I built back in the day to represent Leman Russ tanks for my Vostroyans. I figured it would be a good time to pull them out and dust them off.

In the Solar Auxilia list there are two ways that Leman Russ tanks can be taken: as a Fast Attack or a Heavy Support choice. The Fast Attack option is the Strike Squadron - 1-3 tanks that are any of the following types: Battle Tank, Exterminator, Annihilator, or Vanquisher.

The Heavy Support option is the Assault Squadron - 1-3 tanks that are any of the following types: Demolisher, Incinerator, or Executioner.

I have three tank bodies built, and six turrets (currently five painted). Although none of the Solar Auxilia Leman Russ tanks are allowed to have sponsons, I'm sure my opponents won't mind.

My original models were painted using the incredibly rare, not available in the US, Ogre Flesh spray (from the shortish period when GW Ogres had green/grey flesh). As I'm looking to add a Stormlord, three Dracosans, and a couple of Bombards to the army, I have decided to repaint the Leman Russ tanks, going with the grey of the Solar Auxilia, with red and black stripes, as in the mock up above. The "V" appears on a few of my Vostroyan models, so I'll retain that in the iconography for my tanks. Now it will stand for the 875th Solar Auxilia Cohort, the "Vespasian Fusiliers".

I hope you like the way these are going, and feel free to add your thoughts in the comments.

Merry Christmas (if you celebrate it. If not, Happy Thursday!).


Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Thank you, Terranscapes!

A quick one today. I just wanted to thank Mike at Terranscapes for his prompt and thorough help on my recent La Haye Sainte project.

When my friend Dean mentioned he was also having a gaming table built by Terranscapes, I thought it would be a good idea to get in touch with them and find out how they approached their use of cold and flocking materials, so that the bases I did for the army matched the table Dean would be using them on. I wasn't sure how things would go, sometimes people can be precious about their methods and keep them secret.

Well, I'm incredibly happy to say that Mike was not at all interested in keeping his methods a secret and was only too happy to pop some supplies in the post to me. In the photo above you can see the paint swatches he uses for the sand surface on his tables. These three colors were mixed many moons ago and Mike has gallons of each color for his commission projects. Fortunately they came close to three Vallejo colors: Charred Brown, Beige Brown, and Dark Sand.

Additionally, Mike send three Ziploc bags containing the three different blends of flock he will be using on Dean's table. There's a basic mix that he uses over most of the surface, then an accent mix used on 30-40% of the table, and finally a highlight mix for 10-15% of the table. For the bases in the army I primarily used the basic mix and the highlight mix. The bags you see in the photo are what I now have left after the project, plenty of flock to base Dean's models for years to come : )

So, should you be in the need for some lovely gaming tables built by a very cool guy, I can heartily recommend Mike and Terranscapes!


Monday, December 22, 2014

La Haye Sainte - The Warlord Games collectors' edition.

At Historicon in July of this year, I met up with an old friend and former GW colleague. We had a good time catching up and at the end of it all, he asked me if I'd be up for taking on the Warlord Games La Haye Sainte collectors' edition set. Basically this set is a huge playset - two opposing forces and some great terrain. I enjoy painting up Napoleonic troops and I thought this would be a pretty cool project. Thankfully my friend gave me a good amount of time to complete it, I've only recently finished everything, and been able to deliver it in time for Christmas : )

The first part of this post shows off the Allied defenders of the La Haye Sainte farmhouse, mostly German troops from the King's German Legion battalions, Hanoverian battalions, and Luneburg as well as Nassau, and British riflemen.

The second part of this post shows the French attackers, led by the man above, Marshal Ney!

This resin terrain piece represents the sandpit that stood down the road a little bit from the farmhouse, it was defended at times during the Battle of Waterloo by the men of the 95th Rifles.

And the final part of this post is the La Haye Sainte farmhouse. This is a great piece of Laser cut MDF, made for Warlord by Sarrissa Precision. The build was fantastic, and the painting went pretty smoothly (although there was a lot of it!).

So, I hope you like it as much as my mate does. Merry Christmas, Dean, and thanks for this big commission job!


Saturday, December 20, 2014

This Is Not A Test! - a little bit of painting and photography.

Earlier this year I was invited to take some photos for a new game called This Is Not A Test, from World's End Publishing. Joey McGuire has put together a great game that owes a lot to Necromunda and Mordheim, but is set in a post-Apocalyptic Mid-Atlanic coast area, basically the area Joey grew up in and lives now.

As well as the game, Joey is building up a great range of minis for TNT. At a recent photo session, Joey was kind enough to hand me a couple of the models, including this guy, the leader of the Peacekeeper faction. With an interesting blend of western gear (chaps and duster) and modern tactical equipment (helmet and armor), this guy has a lot of character.

It was nice to get back to painting, after a week or so of assembly, conversions, and sculpting.

And here's a nice teaser shot for you from the TNT rulebook, due out in the next few months : )

Just quickly, I thought I'd post up this commissar. I painted him up last night as a 40th birthday gift for a buddy of mine. He has fallen ill, so his party has been postponed. I guess he'll have to wait until January to get his hands on it.


Thursday, December 18, 2014

Create Your Minis - Kickstarter

There has been a lot of chatter in recent years about the impact that 3D-printing will have on the wargaming world. Lots of speculation about how it will work, what the business model will look like, and when it will all become affordable.

Well, I recently heard about a new group from France who have just launched their first Kickstarter. Create Your Minis are offering up a service where you can pick and choose various elements and assemble them all on-screen, creating (like the name suggests) your own mini. There are all sorts of individual elements with fantasy, sci-fi, and contemporary settings, so you can create all sorts of looks, for your favorite war-game or RPG.

Create Your Minis offer a 3D-printing service, and their Kickstarter explores that some more. There are certainly some interesting things on offer as additional items and stretch goals, such as drop Dead Daisy (below). If you have a few minutes to mess around with "designing" your own miniatures, I'd certainly recommend checking them out.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Solar Auxilia Command

In amongst everything else, I've started on a little bit more work for my Solar Auxilia army, using my old Vostroyans.

Above is the old officer that was going to lead my army. Sadly he was never finished. So, here he is, resurrected and still WIP, standing on his new Dragon Forge base. I'll be using him as my Lord Marshal.

Here are the group that will be my new Auxilia Tactical Command Section. The Proclaimator, Vexilarius, and two Veteran Auxilia are complete (have been for a long time) but I recently got the bug to build a Strategos from the the commander in the Tempestus Scions box, with the head of a Vostroyan lascannon crew member and the archaeotech pistol from a FW Legion Praetor model.

As I get certain elements of the army assembled and/or painted, I'll throw them up here.


Monday, December 15, 2014

Thank you, Secret Santa!

A special thank you to the Secret Santa that sent me these three lovely Vorax Class Battle Automata.

I had a lot of fun assembling these guys, I just love the models : )  The ammo feeds for the rotor cannons are a little tough to get to the right shape, particular if you go for dynamic posing like I've done. Sadly one of the feeds broke, so I've had to build a new one from plasticard strips.

The bases are scratch built using other bits of plasticard and the cool Tech Deck conversion parts from Dragon Forge Design. Click on the link above and scroll to the bottom of the page.


Monday, December 8, 2014

Hearthstone Miniatures

Recently my friend, Scott Maurer, launched a new miniatures venture - Hearth Stone Miniatures. He plans to work with a wide variety of sculptors, producing many interesting sculpts of fantasy minis. The first from his new range is the Chuppa (above), sculpted by Yoo Jing Lee. I asked Scott for a bit of a rundown on Hearth Stone, and here's what he had to say:

"Hearth Stone Miniatures is dedicated to bringing new and interesting visions of fantasy miniatures to life. First and foremost, I am beholden to the sculptor and the artist. I want to see new artists flourish because they are the life blood of our industry and hobby. To that end, I have an arrangement with many sculptors to mold and cast their work free of charge and split the profits from sales with them. This is extremely important to me and I think a good way to foster new artists. Secondly, I want to make cool miniatures based on the work of artists I like. To that end I am commissioning concept artists and sculptors to create new and interesting miniatures that will engage your imagination with their bold vision. Finally, I am committed to quality. Everything I make is done in pressure-cast, hand-poured resin by me because I believe that this material offers the best resolution and I can best control the process by doing this myself."

You can see more concepts for future work at his site here, or on his Facebook page here.

Some very cool, and somewhat disturbing, visions of things to come : )