Wednesday, February 17, 2010

First Blood!

The Great Painting Race is underway and it was my goal to draw "First Blood" and get points on the board before Scott. I intended to make a dramatic splash but my aspirations were too big. I expected to drop like 6 points and do it this passed Monday. Instead it's Wednesday and I'm only dropping 3 Hidden Set Up Counters and a Space Marine Scout. Here's some pics and some info.

First off, last spring Planet Strike was officially announced and I was STOKED! I knew I could expect some of the unique rules from the old 3rd and 4th Edition 40K missions so I endeavored to make some Hidden Set Up markers that would look cool and possibly double as other types of counters. I rummaged through my bitz box and found some old Rhino bitz and I combined them with the rings that come in CD-R spindles. I've had these 4 counters sitting by my painting table for 10 months now? Something like that. Three are now finished. Despite the rules of the race being determined by base size - I'm no chump so I'm only claiming 1 point each. (Note: I still haven't played a game with Planet Strike yet.)
Now more importantly, I've owned 15 of the metal Space Marine Scouts since they first came out around 1998. They've been in various states of completion but I was never quite happy with them. Then, 5 years ago, the new plastics came out. Everyone hated the heads, myself included, but I still bought 3 boxes of them giving me another 15 Scouts. Up until today I had never finished a single one because I was never happy with their look, my early paint schemes, nor how the look of the current range fit into my "Dark Angels." So today I unveil my first Angels of Absolution Scout. His pants are Kommando Khaki to create a beige look that doesn't clash nor blend in with the Bleached Bone. I've used that color on the robes of my sergeants and felt that it worked very well with the paint scheme. If you look at the picture of the scout in C:DA you will see that he has a bald head and a tabard. I decided to take a bald marine head, shave down the neck, and use that instead of one of the standard scout heads, and I made my own tabard out of green stuff. Here are pics of the initial set of scout legs with green stuff tabard and then the completed AoA Scout.

Nick: 4
Scott: 0

Go Nick!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Great Painting Race 2010!

As some of you may have noticed in my last post, I mentioned that I was the second slowest painter I know. I meant no offence to my fellow blogger Nick, but he knew exactly who I had in mind as the slowest painter I know. In the comments of that post I proposed a "painting race," and Nick was totally down for it. We quickly hashed out the rules and this is what we came up with:

Infantry(25mm base): 1pt
Larger models (40mm base): 2pts
Monstrous creature/ vehicle: 4pts

Models must be completely painted (including the base) and posted on here on 2nd City Warzone to score points. Models that have been started in previous years but finished this year DO count (After all, this is about getting finished armies on the table top).

Below are our opening remarks before the contest:

Nick: My hobby output last year was embarrassing. It's normal for me to get teased for how slow I paint, but last year I was distracted. I completed 3-4 Angels of Absolution early on and right at the end of the year painted 5 Skeletons from start to finish. I also added brand new shields to a unit of 20 Skeletons to make me feel better about myself and get them into my display case. I could try and lie to myself and assert that I finished 28 or 29 models last year in order to feel like I could compete with Scott's impressive 32 completed models when in my head I have trouble saying my model count was more than 5. My plan is to make a strong showing early on as I prepare my armies for Adepticon, and then keep pace throughout the year. Since he's going to be experimenting a lot with speed painting techniques - if he starts churning out models I may jump around to Undead, bulking up my Grot units in my Ork army, or completing that BFG Fleet!

One of my greatest weaknesses is that for every technique I streamline, I add something more labor intensive. I have a hard time wrapping my head around going "simple and effective." It always feels like a copout. My dad always loved the quote, "Those who run fast, do not run long." Despite the truth to that statement, I feel like my best chance in this race is to get a get lead out of the gate and then match pace with whatever he posts up so that I always stay one step ahead.

Scott: Last year was probably my most productive year in painting ever (32 models!). I've been a lot better about focusing and getting projects done, not just started.

For 2010, I really want to learn some techniques that will help me paint faster. I just got a cheap airbrush (for free, actually. Thanks, Art) and I'm hoping to use that to do some base coating. Also, I was initially hesitant to embrace Citadel Foundation paints and washes. However, now that I've used them a bit, I have to say I'm pretty impressed with how they can speed up project.

I really struggle with the thought of "lowering my standards", but I think I need to realize I'm not painting for a golden daemon, I'm painting to play with a cool looking army.

Keep an eye on this blog for what is sure to be a gruelling contest of wills, race fans!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Mike Hughes: Red Scorpion Rhino & Cmd. Culln

Over the last month or two my good friend and former GW co-worker has put up pics of 2 more beautiful Red Scorpion Space Marine models. Today I present his Red Scorpion Rhino and Commander Culln.

You can see full sized images and the rest of the gallery of Space Hulk Terminators painted in the Red Scorpions colors here:

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Daemonettes and the New Year

I know I've been silent lately, but I have been working. As I mentioned in my last post, I decided to split my 11 member strong unit of daemonettes into two groups in hope of finishing them faster. Above is the first group of six more or less completed (with my test mini thrown in for good measure).

I was trying some different techniques with the gold and I'm kind of disappointed at how crappy the gold looks in these pictures. A couple of them look OK, but most just look splotchy.

Anyway, here is the whole unit with the unfinished models.

I won't do the bases until they're all finished. That way, I can be sure they're all consistent.

As far a breaking up this unit into two bunches, I couldn't be happier. It's nice to see results sooner rather than later. I was originally going to take a break from this unit and paint something with power armor (which I haven't done in about a year). However, I now feel encouraged with what I've done and want to hurry and finish the rest of the unit.

Then, maybe some power armor... or maybe this:

This is my WIP Herald of Slaanesh. It's just tacked together at this point, but I think you get the idea.

Onward to 2010!

Yeah, yeah, I know it's February and probably too late for New years resolutions. I do this every year for myself as much as I do it for you, so bear with me.

First, I need to learn to paint faster. I am the second slowest painter I know. I paint damn near everyday, but my results come very slow. I don't want to sacrifice quality, so I hope to learn some techniques that will give me decent results without taking years to complete.

Second, more games in this year. Not sure how I'm going to make this happen but it will.

Third, sell my condo* and buy a house. This may not sound gaming related, but it goes with....

Fourth, build my own gaming board. I really don't have much room for this right now, but hopefully when we get a bigger place, I will. This may help with my second resolution as well.

That's about it for this year. Wish me luck

*Also, if you or someone you know is looking for a condo in the Logan square neighborhood in Chicago, let me know.