2020 year in review

Well it's been quite the year for all of us. For myself we've been trying to get ourselves set up in our future home, trying to get a job and trying to stay healthy. But through all that, I have painted more minis than ever before, even painting up some other models for Charity and Friends. Going into the year I knew there would be a lot of change, variables and uncertainty having just moved to a new country and still having a lot of things to do before settling into our home. I had vaguely hoped to continue my recent tradition of painting at least 365 models/year with the stretch goal of 500/year. I blew all those targets out of the water as I took on some commissions and had no regular job to distract me.  Of course that's somewhat offset by the massive number of minis that I purchased! The result is that I haven't really made much headway in my backlog. The Necromunda boxed sets were a particularly big acquisition but mean I now have a good lot of terrain for playi

Thanksgiving 2020

This big ball of dirt has rocketed around the fire orb once more and it's time for another Thanksgiving post.  For those of you that are new to my blog, this is something I do every year and have done since I first moved to America. For those of you that aren't - skip this paragraph - you will have read the gist of it before. Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays, and one I only really discovered on coming to America. There is all the extravagance, the awful, awful history and fights with family but the thing that I really love is the sentiment that the name inspires. A day to give thanks. I am a natural pessimist, I tend to focus too much on the negatives and the problems. This day forces me into a habit of putting light on the good. Every year I try to improve on this, reduce the qualifiers in my thanks even further and take some time to reflect on all the good that has happened in the last year. This time last year, my wife and I were psyching ourselves up for a gra

Painting in a desaturated style

Regular followers will know that I am generally focused on cranking out models fast to a high tabletop quality. I embrace shortcuts like metallic sharpies, airbrushing, drybrushing and of course Contrast paints. These methods have given me a certain style that is somewhat identifiable and has become habitual enough that attempting other styles can be a challenge. A buddy on instagram @hobbygoblinjoe recently sent a request out for a method of painting desaturated looking miniatures and I thought - my time has come!!! What is Desaturated? Before we dive into the weeds, let's bore you with a bit of art theory. I am not gonna go crazy here but just summarize so we are hopefully on the same page as we work through this. Colours have 3 basic elements that artists tend to talk about to describe what they see. First we have hue - this is 'red' 'yellow' 'blue' but also 'bluey-brown' etc. Second there is Light (or value) - a measure of how white or black th

Painting Zone Mortalis Tiles

Painting a gaming table is always an intimidating prospect. We're used to painting little 28mm people, although the game boards are at the same scale, they're a different magnitude of project! I'd already taken on a couple of game board painting commissions this year (one for the old Citadel Realm of Battle boards and another for the Sector Imperialis boards). It was time to do a project for myself. I've been planning a Necromunda campaign with some buddies for a few months. A project to keep everyone occupied during Covid and to look forward to once things ease up, so what better project to work on than Zone Mortalis!? And if I'm going to all the effort of a Zone Mortalis set, I might as well up my game to make a full size gaming table (See Uncle Atom's wisdom in this regard here ) or as my old manager would put it - go big or go home - I think he was being rhetorical but I never tested it by actually going home. After years of being a GW addict, I've lear

An Exercise in the Study of Light

I recently picked up a copy of Figopedia by Jeremie Bonamant Teboul. It had been recommended to me a couple of years ago by Caleb Wisenback of CK Studios but I'd held off getting it as the shipping can be a little expensive. A recent group order however made it a lot more affordable and so I splashed out. I quickly worked my way through the first half of the book - the section on Light (my rapid progress was helped in no small part by the large quantity of images that really help you digest what Jeremie is expressing in his prose. One of the aspects discussed is having a clear impression of the source of light and how this reflects on the surface of the model. Now there are a lot of elements at play here (material, viewing angle, light proximity & brightness) and although it's something I have considered in my painting for a long while, it is often secondary to getting the colours right and the texturing detailed not to mention smoothing the blends. To this end I deci

Call to boycott AK Interactive *UPDATED*

This is a public letter I have posted here and elsewhere in response to marketing campaign and product put out by AK Interactive: Dear AK Interactive, "We're sorry you were offended" is not an apology. Profiting off of genocide is not acceptable. Pulling an apology less than a day after posting it smacks of insincerity. A book teaching people how to reproduce genocide in miniature is tasteless at best. Using such a book to push your products is vile. Using videos of genocide to market it without warning particularly given age of many hobbyists is beyond stupid. Pull the book, apologise and fire those responsible for the marketing and approval of this campaign. Dev - RaggyPaints PS: The outrage in English doesn't seem to make any impact so I've asked a friend to translate into Spanish for you. Estimado AK Interactive, "Lamentamos que se sienta ofendido" no equivale a una disculpa. Aprovecharse de un genocidio con el fin de obtener ganancias, no es acept

How to Paint Aeronautic Imperialis - Charity Raffle

As a last minute addition to the NOVA Open Charity Raffle - I volunteered to paint up an Aeronautica Imperialis starter box. If you'd like to by a raffle ticket they can be found here:  (That's right - this whole box could be yours for $8.00!!! and you get to help out a great cause, what could be better?). Assembling these models is not simple. For models in a boardgame, they are exquisitely detailed but not well suited for a typical casual boardgamer to assemble with many small parts and a very high density set of sprues. But once they're together, I'm sure you'll agree that it's well worth the effort! Bases: Ok let's get cracking on this project! From the beginning, I knew I was going to paint the bases. Some people have left them, or just sprayed them a single colour, but with the gorgeous detailing and clear radar aesthetic, I knew I would have to get a green radar effect onto