Television is rather a frightening business. But I get all the relaxation I want from my collection of model soldiers.
Peter Cushing

Saturday, 19 January 2019

The Power of the Dark Side



"I find your lack of faith... disturbing."

For my birthday last week my beloved Good Lady She Who Must Be Obeyed got me lots of goodies to paint and a brand new game system - Legion.

Obviously, the first thing I started painting was the Dark Lord of the Sith himself, Darth Vader.








As with most other predominantly black figures, the trick here was to get enough differences in tone. So various glazes, edge highlights and use of gloss and matt black were used to provide definition.





The final decision was whether to add an OSL effect from the Lightsaber. I decided in the end to do it as it added just an extra little difference in tone.

Next up will be a present for someone else and then some more of my goodies.

Saturday, 12 January 2019

A Thing Which Has Not Happened For An Age



" 'I am not going to tell you my name, not yet at any rate.' A queer half-knowing, half-humorous look came with a green flicker into his eyes. 'For one thing it would take a long while: my name is growing all the time, and I've lived a very long, long time; so my name is like a story. Real names tell you the story of things they belong to in my language, in the Old Entish as you might say. It is a lovely language, but it takes a very long time saying anything in it, because we do not say anything in it, unless it is worth taking a long time to say, and to listen to.' "






"They found that they were looking at a most extraordinary face. [...] But at the moment the hobbits noted little but the eyes. These deep eyes were now surveying them, slow and solemn, but very penetrating. They were brown, shot with a green light. Often afterwards, Pippin tried to describe his first impression of them. 
   'One felt as if there was an enormous well behind them, filled up with ages of memory and long, slow, steady thinking; but their surface were sparkling with the present; like sun shimmering on the outer leaves of a vast tree, or on the ripples of a very deep lake.' "








One of the most wonderful surprises I got for Christmas was an original metal Treebeard. I started work on it almost immediately.

Sticking it together was the usual pain, requiring a lot of pinning and a Heath Robinson construction to prop it up while the glue dried.




Then came the greenstuffing. Oh, so much greenstuffing. Still, at least sculpting the bark is easier than sculpting scales.







Painting was largely drybrushing and washes to build up slightly different wood tones.




The biggest decision I came to was to leave off the sculpted leaves and replace them with model foliage to give a more realistic finish. I think this was definitely the right choice, especially when I added some leaf scatter in some places.




Sunday, 6 January 2019

"Wraiths! Wraiths on wings!"

You may or may not recall that a year or so again I was lucky enough to get a ringwraith on fellbeast as fathers day present. I was very pleased with it and attacked it with my airbrush immediately.

As it happens these Christmas holidays have been spent watching the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit movies on a loop with my sons and I realised something:

I had painted the Fellbeast the wrong colour!

For some reason I had got it into my head the Fellbeast was grey when it was obviously from watching the film that it was actually blue. So, seeing as I had the airbrush out for something else in any case, I decided to get stuck in.




Quite a change from the original colour:


Here it is, scouring the landscape below for pesky hobbits: 




And here he is facing my brand new Gandalf the White


I think you can agree, this looks much more like it!






Saturday, 5 January 2019

The White Rider



They all gazed at him. His hair was white as snow... and gleaming white was his robe; the eyes under his deep brows were bright... power was in his hand. Between wonder, joy, and fear they stood and found no words to say.

At last Aragorn stirred. 'Gandalf!' he said. 'Beyond all hope you return to us in our need!'....

'Gandalf,' the old man repeated, as if recalling from old memory a long disused word. 'Yes, that was the name. I was Gandalf.'.... 

'Get up, my good Gimli! No blame to you, and no harm done to me. Indeed my friends, none of you have any weapon that could hurt me. Be merry! We meet again. At the turn of the tide. The great storm is coming, but the tide has turned.'....

[The] Dwarf looked up and laughed suddenly. 'Gandalf!' he said. 'But you are all in white!'

'Yes, I am white now,' said Gandalf.

One of my main Christmas presents this year was the fabulous new sculpt of Gandalf the White from GW. As with Theoden this was so nice it was worth spending the extra time on.









Both the foot and mounted version were painted up from grey. I basecoated the cloak on both beige, so that there were different tones of white involved.

It think this was worth the effort expended.