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

Saturday 28 December 2019


I took advantage of the Games Workshop Made to Order offer a month or so ago to treat myself to some Morgul Stalkers for Battle Companies games.

These were painted entirely with the new Contrast paints except the metallics. This time I experimented with mixing some different colours together or layering them for different skin tones.

They are rapidly becoming a must have tool in my arsenal as they replicate my usual painting method but without having to zenithal Prime or mess about with different thinners.

Tuesday 24 December 2019

My Precious

As part of a second hand deal a couple of weeks ago I got a painted Gollum from Lord of the Rings. He's one of the characters I've always fancied getting just to paint so I immediately set about stripping him.

He's been painted with the new Citadel Contrast paints - very thinned for the skin using the Contrast medium which really allowed the detail to come through. I then used unthinned paint for the darkest recesses. 

 The water was done with the water effects I've been using for the ship bases which I think finishes him off nicely.

Saturday 16 November 2019

England Expects

I have more or less finished the Frigates for Black Seas and I thought it would be handy to put another guide to how I do the sea bases here.

They still need the pennants and ratlines for everything but the Surprise but they're certainly ready for the first game. I'll rig and add the sails to the brigs later.

The bases are a refinement of the ones I did for Cruel Seas which are basically a scaled down version of the ones I did for the U-Boat diorama.

The structure is a bit of sheet styrene - 2mm thick to provide a strong base. These are then covered in polyfilla and painted with dark sea green. It's important to make sure the ships fit but you can use this stage to model them listing or cresting waves.

Then add some offwhite/dark sea green highlights to the crests but also in random places. Then coat the whole thing in still water (or gloss varnish; still water is better because it levels out any little holes you have in the polyfilla)

Then slather Vallejo Water Effect Atlantic all over. It looks very bright but don't worry.... dries translucent blue. Leave it for 24 hours to make sure it's cured properly.

Now mix off-white, atlantic blue and still water and sponge it all over the higher points on your wave structures and wakes.

Then slather another, slightly thinner coat of the atlantic blue  and leave for another 24 hours. 

Now do your final wave crests and waves with a sponge, making sure to leave the stuff from the layer below visible. 

Glue the ships down

And finally, dip some cotton wool in the still water and place it around the bows and stern; brush it into place with the still water and you have sea foam. 

Hope this helps! Next up, an actual game. 

Saturday 26 October 2019

Vive l'Empereur!

Not dead! Very busy with work and a couple of family emergencies but I have still been dunking away at a few bits and pieces:

Work on Black Seas continues apace.

My marvellous wife - She Who Must Be Obeyed - bought me the magnificent Fall of Delta Green as an anniversary present. 

The 11th Hussars are ready to charge into action as part of the continuing Penninsular War Project.

The next update should be the completed Black Seas fleets. 

Saturday 12 October 2019


Obviously I was going to buy into Black Seas. I really enjoy cruel seas and I love my Napoleonic naval combat so this was a given.

So here is my first 1/700 scale frigate, rigged and with paper sails. The rigging was slightly more complex than on a 1/1200 as it had to be more accurate. However, the models are designed to make rigging as easy as possible. She is currently awaiting ratlines and a decision on basing. I am tempted to do a sea base as I have done with other naval games.

Really nice miniatures and looking forward to playing the game.

Monday 2 September 2019


This is a gorgeous piece and I've been on with it on an off for a few months. It's been so long in fact that they were started with normal paints and had some final effects added with contrast paints which were released in the meantime.

The base was airbrushed and given a gloss varnish for the ice. 

From a modelling point of view, the only compexity was magnetising the weapons for Azog. In the film he is armed with the stupid great block you see here. However, I dislike it intensely. So...

1mmx2mm rare earth magnets recessed into both sides of the wrist, allowing me to swap them out as required. 

Overall, very happy with how this turned out as a display piece.