Monday, 26 September 2011

Blood Ravens Predator: "Furious" COMPLETED!

So, after some more free time this weekend with the kids asleep, I got it finished and photographed. Full shots, and commentary, below.

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

WiP Blood Ravens Predator (Part II)

Well I knew this would be a big job, and it's still ongoing. Still, the hull is now painted up, and a large chunk of the detailing is finished, enough at least to do a bit of assembly.

As you can probably make out i've done a bit of "scuffing" on the lower hull, whilst trying to keep the top nice and clean and all he's really missing apart from some more touch-ups (which seem never-ending) is his chapter markings. Assembly revealed that the right-hand-side Heavy Bolter is a bit loose in it's mounting, which i can't really do much about, and what you can't see on these pics is that the Aquila on the rear door is slightly (but noticably) wonky. grrr. 

He even has a name now...

Originally I was going to put White Flashing on the engine vents, but with the
sponsoons added it felt unneccesary.
 Hopefully this weekend should see him finished, and i'll get some decent photos done then.

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

WiP: Blood Ravens Predator

After a lot of drilling, filing and assembling, I've finally got some paint on my Predator. So far I've completed the Heavy Bolter Sponsoons and the Turret, which isn't bad for the best part of a week's work. I'm using the same technique I used on the Dreadnaught - Black Primer, then Mech Red Base, followed by successive coats of Scab Red and thinned Blood Red over the top. The turret has taken 3 of the Blood Red coats and i'm pretty happy with the effect; it looks sort of worn but clean, and the orange line-highlights pick out the shape nicely.

At least thats what I think; comments are always appreciated.

Heavy Bolter Sponsoons

Completed Turret - the Hatch will have a Blood Raven Symbol on it

The hull only has the Mech red base and Scab Red coat on it.
Thats a big job comming up!
Finally, my research into other Blood Raven designs turned up this thread on I am officially intimidated, as this guys stuff is awesome!

Thursday, 8 September 2011

On trying to create the right look

After reshuffling of the bookcases, my figures now have a home up on some display shelves - the ones worthy of display, at least - and its let me take stock of the three small yet increasing forces I'm building up. One of the things that I'm keen to do is to keep a separate "look" for each of these armies, other then simply a colour scheme choice. This is probably best emphasised by looking at the three "walker" platforms I have so far got finished.

Left to Right: Blood Raven Dreadnought, IG Sentinel, Tau XV8
One of the advantages of being a short-attention-span afflicted dabbler is that you end up trying different things as I'm not frantically trying to paint an army for tabletop use. So each of these three guys has a slightly different effect on them, which I think is moderately successful. The XV8 was painted to be ultra "clean" - I spend pass after pass on him smoothing out the colours as best I can and whilst his legs are dirtied up to put him the base, the rest of him has no wearing or chips or scoring to maintain that high-tech look I always picture the Tau having.

The Sentinel is pretty much the opposite - I don't see IG machines getting a lot of time in the body shop and much like their crews I think they get kept in the field pretty much until they fall apart. So the Sentinel is chipped and worn and streaked with dirt and oil; quite by chance I found that dry-brushing back over the unit stripe on it's "cheek" makes it look like the paint is wearing off back to the basecoat, and generally the poor bugger looks like he needs a rest.

Finally the Dread is sort of half-way between the two - the colour is built up of multiple thin layers from the edge inwards, so the flat sections of the hull are noticably darker in the middle even before I added the edge highlights. Its left him looking slightly worn and old without being covered in chips and scratches, as broadly speaking I suspect Marine gear is much better looked after than its IG equivalents.

And these chaps are the equivalent Infantry, with the same general principles in mind. Note the Guardian's Lasgun being the "wrong" colour for his urban camo, as fluff-wise I'm not sure the Munitorium is up to reissuing a whole regiment's weapons on re-deployment, whereas again the Fire Warrior is all nicely colour co-ordinated.

It does make me think that the next big skill I need is better photography though...

Thursday, 1 September 2011

On Starting Out and Making Progress

So, I was sat there last night, cheerily drilling out the gun-barrels and exhausts for the Predator Destructor I've just started, and I had an odd moment of "what the hell am I doing?". Not in a "oh this is a waste of time" sort of way, more a realisation that it's been less than a year (about 10 months) since I started painting again and and I'm sat here with a hobby drill and a selection of bits cleaning up a model, pre-assembly, surrounded by paints and brushes of all sizes and a load of other paraphenalia. And I've pondering on it a little ever since.

I was moved to start painting again after we did a big clear out of the loft and came across a large amount of figures and ships from my during-and-after university days. I was a decent painter, if not spectacular, and in a burst of nostalgia I ordered the GW Marines "starter pack" which comes with 5 Ultramarines and 8 paints and a brush, just for a bit of a dabble. Seeing as they didn't turn out too terrible, I've just sort of carried on picking up and painting whatever takes my fancy and really a lot of blog sites for tips and tricks. The latter I've found especially helpful, and one of the motivations of setting up this blog was that if I somehow manage to help or inspire even a single other hobbyist I'll have felt like I've given something back.

The point I want to share is this: 10 months ago I was slapping on paint to an Ultramarine and now I'm doing detailed prep on unassembled kits. My last Blood Raven Tac marine figure uses (I counted) 18 different paint or ink colours. Thats not a lot of time for a big improvement in both the quality of the work I'm going and the confidence with which I'm doing it. And I'm not that great - not compared to some of the work you'll see with a quick google or on many of the blogroll links on this site or others.

It's daunting starting out - it costs a lot just to get a fairly basic set of gear, before you've got a single figures - but there are a lot of basic tricks that make a huge difference and you can make that first wave of improvement in a short period of time and a good amount of reading...