Wednesday 6 May 2020

Gladiator Ogre and Jack o' Lantern Familiar

I had a rather productive day today. Managed to make headway with the enormous amount of school work I had to get through and I got two miniatures finished off it my sunny back garden. The gladiator ogre and the Jack o' Lantern familiar, both I believe by Jes Goodwin. 

Wanting to try something different with the ogre's skin I opted to use yellow in my standard flesh mix. I was hoping to achieve a sallow looking skin as a result but I am not too sure if I have been successful. I also used a far darker base colour to create the shading than I would normally use. The jury is out! 

I am very pleased with the metallics though, especially the bronze pauldron. I have a hankering to tinker with this recipe for golden metal again soon, if I can find a suitable figure to try it out on. It was simple to achieve. Bronze basecoat with a brown wash, highlighted with a bright gold. As simple as that! For the chainmail I used a variety of techniques, mostly drybrushing and a little edge highlighting with a bright silver. I added depth here and there with a little black ink too. The result is pleasing as silver armour is an area I am keen to improve. 

I even went as far to add toenails and a couple of nasty spots to the figure to help add character. The mohawk was great fun to paint and as you can see I went for a odious '80s green.  

The black leather was really easy to achieve too. I just painted the strips black, painted over the top with grey and then used a finer brush to paint a thin black line through the centre. Quickest piece of highlighting I think I've ever done. The eyes, lip and scar were created through purple and red washes followed by a final bleach bone highlight of the features. Pure white was used to pick out his two protruding teeth. 

A very nice model this one, though a little bit more primatively sculpted than the other ogres in the range I have painted so far. 

This was today's second completed model. He was great fun too and I tried to contrast the orange of his pumpkin with the tatty earthy colours of his ragged clothes. I highlighted the whole model from the pumpkin down in bleached bone to give him a slightly weathered look. This familiar is after all supposed to represent a scarecrow brought to magical life. I toyed with painting magical lights in his eyes but in the end I thought the black contrasted better and added more depth. 

He feels more akin to the Night Horrors range to me though, than the other familiars... but he's finished.

Saturday 2 May 2020

Famous Familiars: Mannequin

Been laid low recently with a tooth infection. It seems with the pandemic the only solution to serious toothache is to nuke it from orbit with megaton antibiotics and painkillers. Still, it was the cheapest private consultation I've ever had costing me precisely nothing save my time. More money for miniatures I guess...

I was feeling better this afternoon so decided to continue my famous familar project with this little chap. The Mannequin. Not the best photograph I know, but at least he is finished. I tried to capture a feel of woodgrain paintig him up and I am not sure I was successful. What do you think, dear readers?

The club also proved a problem as it ended up looking too similar to the body of the model. In the end I mixed red in with brown and highlighted the weapon up as normal. I added a tiny bit of blue verdigris on the bronze studs but it hasn't come out too clear here. 

Still, he was fun to paint after a while away. I'll see if I can take some better snaps when I finish the next batch of familiars that I have started. Each is a joy to work with. So full of character and imagination. I discovered today that GW have produced a set for the 21st century. Not a patch on these metal original in my opinion but each to their own. 


Saturday 25 April 2020


Hello again, 

I have completed my week in school and look forwards to some Oldhammer time in the coming days. Obviously, I plan to continue my familiar and ogre projects with immediate effect but there is a third, long standing challenge that still lies uncompleted. That of McDeath. I was in conversation last week with some other affectionados of this Shakesperian themed scenario, and was inspired to try and take a snap shot of my painted collection of McDeath miniatures. 

And here is the result of that, though I forgot to include Juggo. Rummaging around in the collection I have found the mounted versions of the two knights and they have been placed in the painting queue. It would be really something to complete this project again and hopefully get some of the scenarios played in some form after the pandemic. 

Until next time, stay safe. 


Monday 20 April 2020

C23 Jes Goodwin Ogre: Marauder/Bandit

I took a bit of a break from tiny familiars over the last few days to work on this classic model. Yes, one of the iconic Jes Goodwin ogres that everyone knows and loves. I am sure that you will agree that these are some of the finest models of the 1980s and like the familiars, there is a huge range of character and detail in each figure. In fact, anyone with even a passing interest of old school Citadel models should have a couple of these in their collection. 

I am lucky enough to have ten.

Looking back at the lead mountain, I have really squandered these models. They have sat in my draw for many, many years and I really should have doen them the service they deserve a paint them up to make a unit. So alongside the tiny tiny familiars I am going to knock out a couple of these models a week (hopefully) to help preserve my sanity of dealing with the uber fiddly detail on the familiars. 

He was a real pleasure to paint if truth be told. The skin was easy to highlight and his character just oozed out as I worked. Drybrushing brought out the furs and his hair and the rest was simply a case of basecoat, highlight and extreme highlight. There are still a couple of things to work on here... but they can wait. 

I am just about to depart back to school. So I won't have any further time to work on anything for the next week or so. I help look after key worker children and have to do my week before retreating back into self-isolation again. But I will be back.... stay safe in the meantime everybody. 


Thursday 16 April 2020

Famous Familiars: Daemonet, Armoured Mite and the Creeping Claw

Another day in lockdown... another three familiars painted up in the sunshine. I feel a bit headachey now (is that a word?) as I was so enthralled with these figures I forgot to drink enough. Ha! So I am enjoying an apple squash as I type. 

Daemonet was completed first. I had previously painted him up in red but wasn't happy with the result at all. I couldn't capture the character of the face well enough. In frustration I covered him in a purple wash and left him for a few days. Picking him up this morning, I stuck with the purple theme and just went with it. Picking out the detail on the face with pink highlights. The eyes were basecoated in yellow, washed in orange ink and then highlighted back up to yellow again. The hands and feet mirrored the same colour mx as the face. Again on a whim, I used a nice blue (mixed with a tiny bit of the purple basecoat) to drybrush on the fur. I used a second coat of drybrushing, added a little sky blue to the recipe. Bleached bone picked out the horns and he was done. 

The Armoured Mite was a bit of a triumph for me. Long time readers will know I struggle with metal armour. I bought a fine sliver paint and put it to good use here for the final highlight. He was pretty straightforwards as most of the depth on this model was created with black and blue ink washes. I then drybrushed a dark silver back over the model before picking out the edge highlights with the bright silver. I feel a little more confident about painting armour now and will need to work on this technique soon. 

The Creeping Claw familiar ended up pivoted on the base. I know a lot of people place it flat but I decided to use the tiny slotta this figure has to suggest that the hand is rearing up. I used a flesh colour mixed with green to suggest decay and built up the highlights by adding additional layers of flesh and bleached bone. I used brown and orange ink washes to suggest filthy brown nails. The gold ring was painted using my usual method for gold. Dark gold basecoat, chestnut ink and highlights using a lighter gold. I tried not to use any silver in the highlight for a rich tone that contrasts well with the pale flesh. I dribbled a little red ink around the stump to suggest oozing horror. Hope you like it. 

I switched cameras back to my old phone. I think it takes a better picture in natural light. So I reshot the previous familars on their own. Here is the Beastling again.

A less blurry shot of the Ironclad Imp. I am glad I didn't add additional highlights now, as the blue looks rich and magical here. 

The Toad (also known as Wart) needs a little work on the feet I think. But this is a better photograph of him. 

Skeletal Minion looks more in focus too, and that candle looks great when photographed. I am glad I took the trouble to repaint it in red to add some variation to the colour scheme. 

Finally, the Daemonette. I am wondering if I should go back and try and add eyes. But these models are extremely small and my eyesight is not what it was! 

Hope you like what you see. 


Wednesday 15 April 2020

Famous Familiars: Daemonette, Beastling and Toad

It was my birthday today. Obviously, you can't go anywhere or do anything... so I decided to spend the day painting outside in the garden. Lady luck was on my side as I completed three whole figures and still managed to cook lunch and dinner for the kids! This daemonette was the first model I worked on. I enjoyed this one as I feel that painting flesh is one of my strengths. I used my usual recipe and the figure just painted itself really. Not the best photograph but it was a quick snap as I was tidying up the garden for dinner. I am surprised that this miniature (being nude) is still for sale at GW as part of this range... with so many of the tamer models no longer available. 

Beastling was next. Now this model was more of a challenge. My first attempt used drybrushing extensively but I wasn't happy with the result. It looked to patchy and dry, if you know what I mean. I used chestnut ink to bring the detail back out and had a second crack at the model. This time I built up the fur with a brush before finishing with a light toned drybrush. This solved the problem and then it was a case of just painting up the hands and feet. I was inspired by gorillas and was quite pleased with the black highlighting on the toes. getting the face right was a bit of a pain, but in the end a bit of black sunk deep into the eye sockets gave the figure the depth I thought it was lacking. 

Finally, Toad. Again, I felt like this figure just painted itself. I used a green/brown mix as a basecoat and just built up from there, adding bleached bone and then white to the mix as I built up the highlights. He was difficult to photograph so this shot will have to do too. I think his claws need a little work later on and I plan to do a few tweaks here and there on some of these models. I used a pale white for his belly and chin to make him more toad like, and highlighted all the warts in yellow. He's a fun little figure and a good experiment in painting green. 

And now they are all together...

I am pleased that my skills seem to be slowly coming back. I hope you agree, dear reader? This range of models is perfect for a project like this as each and everyone is different. I am really enjoying myself and hope to get a couple more completed tomorrow. 

Until then, stay safe.


Monday 13 April 2020

An Oldhammer Bookclub: Storm Warriors (Orfeo Trilogy Part 3)

It has been a busy Easter weekend for me. None of it really hobby related... you see we have an allotment that has become a bit of a lifeline since the lockdown and I spent some days sorting that out and building a temporary greenhouse. I enjoy painting outside and I did tinker with a couple of my familiars ( I have four on the go) but the sun was too warm and the paint dried too fast!

One thing I did achieve was a further expedition into my enormous collection of 80s and early 90s Games Workshop. I discovered I owned a near mint first edition of Storm Warriors by Brian Craig, which came as a bit of a surprise! Dimly, you might recall I used to do a 'Book Club' style project here on RoC80s and chronicled my reading of the first two books in the Orfeo trilogy and their asociated WHFRP articles. I suspect that this book was bought to complete the project... and then forgotten. If you are interested, here are the links to the first two books in the series. Orlygg's Review of Zaragoz and Orlygg's Review of Plague Daemon

So I thought, why not complete the trilogy? If you have any of these classic novels (or anthologies) in your collection and you haven't got around to reading them... I heartedly recommend that you do. 

Expect a full review as soon as I finish the novel. 

Oh, and I love the cover! Those dark elves by Fangorn are classic!