So, now that I have finished with the Death Company for now, I decided it was time to move on and paint something else. I have a lot,of boxes in the house that are sitting around and need attention, but worse than that, I have a lot of old spruces that need assembling. Today, I put together 4 scouts, the last one seems to have gone off on a mission somewhere, and sorted out 10 Space Marines of the old variety. I know they’re not getting releases now, but it seems a shame not to use them. They are all going to be Blood Angels anyway and so will join the top shelf when finished.
I am trying to make them seem very ‘Space Marine’ so have them with banners and ornate bits and bobs, and a ton of purity seals too. I also found some random miniatures that are going to be added to the squad, because they have nowhere else to hang out.
Don’t worry, I will drill out barrels when I have everyone assembled and in a line for painting!
The other thing I did today was stupid. I scratched my cheek with my scalpel in my hand and sliced my nose. It bled profusely but will heal ok on its own. It left me feeling really dumb. What is the dumbest thing you have done while hobbying?
This week I have mostly been working on Death Company. I have finished five of the many Death Company miniatures I have working here. Have a picture montage of these fine, angry men:
What I have really enjoyed about these is not rushing through them. Being able to take my time and get into the details a bit more than I usually would. I am now going to work on a Chaplain friend for them, someone has to keep this rowdy bunch in line.
In other news, the Trailblazer project continues to grow and I am finding my enthusiasm for it is too. Go and have a look at the latest – I start to develop a starship, and there are some great bust pictures drawn my Jenn too:
I have picked up a couple of commissions lately, which has led to a few people asking me what Table Top and Table Top Plus are. I found that the commission page I have doesn’t really answer that question very clearly and it has made me think what the differences are. I decided to make it much clearer by painting a single miniature to demonstrate this. Seeing how I have a ‘few’ Blood Angels kicking about, I used one of them to do so.
This is Table Top Sergeant Himbo. He has base colours and a single set of highlights on him. There are no freehand details on purity seals and no markings on him. His colouring is very basic and there is little in the way of shading. He also has a simple scheme on his base, in this case done with texture paint.
This is Table Top Plus Sergeant Himbo. He has two colour highlights, freehand details – note the purity seal and decals attached as well. More of the miniatures details have been picked out and his base is more than a texture base.
I did this exercise to clarify in my mind what each stage includes. I do now need to go and paint the rest of the Blood Angels, but I have quarantine here so I will certainly have the time!
I finished Dante today, after what seems like forever. When I picked him out of the second hand box he came in, I decided he would be a great opportunity to try a brighter version of Non-Metallic Metals than I have done in the past. Here he is in all his finished glory:
Thoughts on Non-Metallic metals then. I like how much brighter the paints I used turned out. It was difficult half way through because it looked awful but pressing through and using the yellow really brought it out. The blue blends on the axe look super smooth and I really like how the lightning looks as though it is dancing over the blade rather than just stuck on.
Improvement points: I need to make the lighter sections larger, I feel the mini is still rather dark in places. I could use smoothing out the blends as well to make the transitions better. This shows particularly on the larger, flat areas. Silver spots remain a sticking point but this will get better with time.
The base needs a touch up.
All in all though, this has been a great learning process and I have some ways forward for myself. I am pleased with him and he will soon join his brothers in the cabinet!
As many of you know, I went on holiday, which was an amazing opportunity to relax and read! And read I did! I picked this up due to the portrayal of Dante in Devastation of Baal and wanting to know more. This book did not disappoint. It follows two lines of story – one of child Dante and how he became a Blood Angel, and that of Chapter Master Dante just before the events of Devastation of Baal.
I don’t put spoilers in my reviews because the details of the story are part of the joy of reading. In this story, we are treated to so many anecdotes and memories that have happened during Dante’s long life. One of the funniest was how he got into trouble when he was a scout the first time he saw rain. It is an act we can all relate to – looking up and trying to catch it with your mouth is something I think we have all done – and it shows Dante as attached to his humanity more than other Space Marines. This is just one such tale in a book filled with them.
The side characters are not neglected in the tale either. We all know that Dante goes on to become a Blood Angel, so that is no mystery to the reader, however it does not make the tale redundant. The journey is filled with characters who are interesting and their stories are just as good. None of them feel flat or as though they are there to just pad out Dante’s story. They are individual and worth reading about too! One of them had me in tears of sorrow – a difficult feat to acomplish so well done!
Guy Haley’s use of language in this novel is great too. None of the book feels like redundent description, it is all relevent and none of it is too floral or poetic. Meaning is clear and well thought out. I read this book in less than two days, which is really quick for me.
The short part is that this book made me fall in love with Dante, it is worth reading, full of emotion and just all round fabulous! Go read this!
Usually, Monday is the build day but I found myself with some time this evening to paint some of my own miniatures. As a part of the hobby audit, I wanted to practice non metallic metals. This is a technique I have started with but by no means mastered. I have found my efforts before have been rather dark and look like antique gold, as a friend said.
So, I found the miniature who wears a lot of shining gold and decided to have a go at something a bit lighter and more polished. Dante. Who else? I don’t have any Custodes that belong to me in the house and he was there waiting.
Here are my efforts so far:
Not bad for a first go. it looks lighter at least and more polished and I am pleased so far. What I have learned is that finecast seems to have a slight texture to it, as though it is porous and that is making the blending awkward.
Still, I am learning from the task adn that is the most important thing!
I finally finished this guy! What a fun miniature he was to work on as well. He fell into my basket at Element Games and I couldn’t be bothered to put him back on the shelf. I thought he looked pretty cool, though I had no idea who he was at the time. I wanted to try creating a lava effect on his wings and so tried a technique out that I wasn’t sure whether it would work or not:
I am not convinced this is the best I could do, but I think it looks alright for a first try. I got the idea from one of the Mephiston short stories – he creates lava wings to go fight a daemon or something like that – and want to recreate that scene in a diorama (more on that later). I did try and make some lava drops out of UHU Glue but they looked terrible so I didn’t bother with them.
For now though, I am pleased with this guy and learned a great deal while painting him too!
I won’t lie, I was a bit wary of reading this. I did not get along with Dark Imperium when I read it and so was unsure whether I would get along with this. All hesitation was blown away after the first few pages however and I thoroughly enjoyed reading this novel.
What makes this novel exceptionally good, is how invested I was in the characters. I knew of Mephiston of course, and his friends Rhacelus and Antros, and I knew names of the others but not what they were like. It did not take long for me to become truly involved with them and want them to win. Every character in the novel plays a part but there are no carbon copies, not one of them is the same as the other, despite claims to the contrary and it comes off well. They all compliment one another in some way and seeing them all work together is a delight – even if they don’t want to! This is a true writing skill, and shows how masterful Haley is.
I don’t do spoilers in my reviews because I want readers to go out and wnjoy books for themselves but character highlights are fine:
Gabriel Seth of the Flesh Tearers being an angry meathead at everything forever.
Dante’s speeches, actions and general heroism despite his personal doubts.
Mephiston’s questionable deeds, and the dynamic between him and the other librarians.
The genuine sadness as the planet and its system is devastated.
Other points that made this book readable: pace, dialogue and balance. The pace is good. It kept me reading until late as I wanted to know what happened. It was punchy, didn’t linger too long on a single point and wasn’t too heavy on the description either. The dialogue between the characters is good, whether a rousing speech, bickering or banter, it works well. Again, it is not over written but in some places, it is funny. It hits the right tone throughout.
This novel is well balanced, quick paced and has some truly emotional points in it. I didn’t cry (only Graham McNeill makes me do that these days), but it was close. I was afraid, gutted and relieved through the book and that is down to the skill of Guy Haley.
I also bought Gabriel Seth so I can have my very own Angry Meathead to glare at the other Angry Meatheads in the cabinet!
This isn’t going to be a massively long update today, but I wanted to share Mephiston with everyone. I finished him yesterday, and he is going to be a present for a friend’s birthday. She has already seen him so I have no worry about it being spoiled. Anyway. although he was finecast, and I did have to do a fair bit of cleaning up, he was a lot of fun to work on and different to the usual heretics I paint.
Here he is, in all his red glory!
In other news, Stormcast Eternals are not so bad to paint…