Tuesday, 29 May 2007

Wheely good fun ... save me!

Oh yes, wheels, how can three colours provide so many problems? Well I'm roughly halfway through the wheels now, ahead of schedule I'm happy to say, should be able to get a second pair finished today at this rate (which will make me very happy!) hopefully allowing me to crack on with the barrels come the weekend with a bit of luck.

My sculpting list has grown meanwhile, the Phoenix's Club's Praetorian Project is slowly starting to gain support and to help out with keeping the costs down from the hire of a professional sculptor I'm giving a go of sculpting some heads and torso's for them. For the moment heads on hold while I await the arrival of some of Hasslefree Minatures male heads to work off of, in the meantime I'm experimenting with torso sculpts - I'll use the chance to do some for my Roughriders as well, I'll pop up some pictures sometime in the next week!

Sunday, 27 May 2007

The Duelist

The Duelist began life as a Concept sketch drawn by The Green Witch on 40k Online after a brief disucssion thread about my plans for a Praetorian Kill Team along side a number of these sketches. This was by far my favourite though and couldnt help but to make it the first model I created.

Looking at the pose I choose to base the conversion on the Praetorian Missile Loader which had a similar body pose, only the extremities would need altering.

I removed the arms including the epualette on the models left arm as well as the strap and missile bag over the models shoulder, this left much of the tunic needing work however due to either non-existant detail or damage caused while I removing the pieces, in the end I also decided to rebuild the belt.

I continued to rebuild the tunic, belt etc including adding the pouch on the models belt and began to work more seriously on the arms, a mistake I made at this stage was too make the arm behind the back a tad too long, something I later recitified, I probably should also have included a metal frame for the arms to make them a little more robust though on completion this does'nt seem to be a problem.

With the tunic or less complete I spent more time on the arms adding cloth folds, incredably simple to do with the thin edge of a sculpting tool but really does make it a whole lot more realistic, the same method is used to build the epualette which was done in two stages, first the braid folding a piece of green stuff over the arm before detailing it, then building the board ontop once thats dried. I also added some facial hair at this point and the sword and scabbard, this was taken from the current Commissar Yarrick model though some detailing needed to be removed. The base shape of the hands were also added (working in stages is so much easier then trying to sculpt such a fidley bit in one go), with the frame of the pistol fitted in one, this simply a piece of metal paperclip.

Now onto the final stage of converting I finished work on the hands, tidied the legs, added the scarf around the pith helmet (again stages, first the cloth around the helmet, then the ends dropping onto the soulders before adding the 'knot') and finally worked on the pistol. Again this was done in stages, first the barrel, then the stock and finally the detailing. At first I was'nt 100% sure about the pistol but it really drew on me, a heavy, slightly stubby dueling pistol in the style of a flintlock pistol, it seems quite a fitting weapon for such a character.

Last of all came the painting, spent a bit longer on this one then I usually do, not a display model but more then an average gaming piece I'd like to think with generally 6 to 7 shades for each colour from basecoat to highlight (usually my models are 3-4). The only bit I did'nt end up happy with was the scabbard's grey which looks terrible in this first picture, subsequently I've added an addional highlight moving each of the others down a level since this picture was taken though which I think improves it alot. Job done!

Project Changes an stuff

Well I've failed miserably to get anywhere with the Warrior Project so I'm going to abandon that for the time being and come back to it at a later date, I think my mistake was not to have a final idea on how I wanted the vehicle to look and have been unable to decide when it came down to it between a big leman russ, a ww1 style tank or an opentopped steam punk style landship. Time has ticked away with little progress meanwhile and I know it's time I cant afford to waste right now given how fast I paint usually!

On the bright side I've finished my 40k Online Painting Vow for this month with the Duelist now completely done (update comming on that front) and having finished my first AI Thunderbolt. Now I'm gonna crack on firstly with the second three Lascannons (crew's already done) so as too finish that squad and start work on some Roughriders.

The Lascannons while mind numbing are fairly strait forward I've made a start already on the wheels, the Roughriders meanwhile are more of a project in their own right. My plan is to sculpt and cast in bulk the majority of the components needed myself so as to get models which are consistant and will hopefully after the initial sculpt be much quicker to turn out then if I were to just convert them. The drawback is I've never sculpted a complete mini, only converted ah and I've no idea about casting at this point!

I've purchased a couple of the WFB Empire Pistoler box's for the horses (compaired to buying normal plastic horses a good deal when you factor in all the extra bits and pieces in the box), I'll probably start sculpting in the comming week so watch this space for what will almost certainly be a month of much cursing and throwing of of objects!

In other news I've got wind of an exciting project over on the Phoenix Club forums, these are the guys behind the recent Female Cadian Project. Currently they're considering tackling a basic conversion kit for Praetorians (and possibly Mordians) from the Plastic Cadian sprue, it's only in the prospective planning stage at the moment, but if anyone is interested I'd really urge you to go take a look and show some support, the more they get the more likely this is a project which will see the light of day! See the proposal thread here.

Finally hope everyone did well out of the WD 30th Anniversary event, I ended up with a ton of sprues (yay for conversions), a nice trophy version of the new White Dwarf model and an Orc army... hmmm more to paint? Oh dear.

Sunday, 13 May 2007


Well thats the Gatling Gun Battery finished as well as the crew for the next Lascannon Battery leaving my 40k Online Vow almost finished for this month already! I've only got the Duelist who is slowly taking shape and a Thunderbolt fighter for AI left to do (I'll do a post about the Duelist proper once the paintings done, conversion and all).

So where does that leave me for the rest of the month? Well firstly I'm going to start cracking on with the Lascannon Battery Guns themselves, aiming to get the base coating done by the end of the month (I repeat I hate(!) doing these with a passion they really dont deserve, hence it's gonna take some time). Secondly is gonna be something a bit more fun - the 'Warrior'. I'm starting this for the 40k Online Conversion Contest, the basic idea is a big arse tank, with a little bit of steampunk chucked in unlike the standard Leman Russ this will be operated by the Praetorian Artillery Corps as opposed to the Armoured Cavalry as its more of a Infantry Support tank then an MBT, the conversion is to be based on a Landraider Chasis and rules wise will be to be represented by a Demolisher (when needed) or as is intended as the main representation of the tank the forthcomming Malacdor from Forgeworld, 'nuff said!

I got round to ordering some Sentinel Assault Cannons from GW US yesterday as well, I emailed GW UK and was told the part was available, but on calling discovered thats not the case ... oh well.

Wednesday, 2 May 2007

I demand satisfaction sir!

Well my Kill Team Duelist is now done!

Based on the concept sketch drawn by 'The Green Witch' on 40k online in my previous entry, the figure is quite a heavy conversion based on the Praetorian Missile Launcher Loader figure. I'll do a full on post about him and the conversion once the model is completely finished - which will be soon. Another month has starting and so its time for another painting vow over on 40k online, this month it's gonna be 3 Gatlings Guns (almost finished as I write this, just need to finish painting one gun and put all the components together - painted unassembled), crew for the Gatlings Guns and for my next Anti-Tank Squad and that Duelist. Why so little this month? Probably moving! So it'll be slow on the painting front, especially if I dont crack on, so back to the painting table now!