20 years ago I used to love painting "little metal men" and playing the very first edition of what was to become the hugely successful Warhammer 40K game, so recently I decided to revisit my youth. So far this has consisted of going out and buying some minis, and then wonderful-wife going out and buying ALL THE MINIS IN THE WORLD, and a selection of paints and brushes. With a couple of hours each weekend to paint them, this is going to take a while. There they sit in the corner now... looking at me... judging me... Anyway, one thing that I've found motivational is the wealth of pictures and "how to" guides on other painters' blogs, so I decided to post some of my own humble efforts here. Hope you like 'em.

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Free Magnets!!!

Yeah, that's right - free magnets.

A company called "First 4 Magnets" in the UK is giving away magnets in return for modellers sending in pictures of the projects that they use them in. Got my confirmation email back today, so it looks like they still have some left guys. I presume this is probably restricted to the UK, but worth a try if you magnetise your models. Here's the link with all the details:


Happy modelling!

BTW - no update for a while as I've been building the imperial sector buildings - more Eagle Warriors to come soon...

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

New Dark Eldar

I guess these guys are going to be flavour of the month for a while - good job they look rather fantastic...


Scroll down to see pics of the new line of Dark Eldar - all sleek and evil looking. Oh dear, add this to the Orks, Marines and Craftworld Eldar that I'm already working on, along with the Chaos Space Marines and Demons that I'm jealously ogling and this is a recipe for bank-account-collapse... help!

Monday, 30 August 2010

Eagle warriors terminator

I've been eager to get around to these guys because I've always thought that space marine terminators were the coolest models ever. I've still got the original metal terminator squad and a couple with cyclone missile launchers that I've stripped of my old Blood Angels paintjob, might give them a new look some day, for old times' sake. So here he is, the first Eagle Warriors termie from the Black Reach set:

I've noticed that a lot of colour schemes for these guys use contrasting colours for the helmets, so I thought I'd pick out the helmet in the same red that I use for the marines' bolters. Ooh! and I almost forgot - here's the moulded shoulder pad, done from an impression of a standard marine shoulder icon:

Saturday, 14 August 2010


Phew! - glad I finally got this one finished, he's been languishing on the painting table for ages. So the Tac squad now finally has a sergeant - just the missile launcher to finish and then we're done, yay!

I tried taking the pic outdoors this time - dodgy background I know, but the colours end up looking a lot closer to reality - shame we only get 3 sunny days a year here...

Monday, 26 July 2010

Tactical marines

Here are the latest additions to the Eagle Warriors - part of the Black Reach tactical squad

...just a couple more to go then I can get started on those terminators.

Thursday, 22 July 2010

Goodbye old chum

Sad news I'm afraid. We lost one of our dogs to cancer. He was a friendly, patient and gentle giant, far superior in character to many humans I know, and he leaves behind a hole in our lives that will be impossible to fill. Thankfully he was not in any pain.

Friday, 16 July 2010

Just a quickie today (been on holiday) - here's another addition to the Eldar effort - a Banshee. Not happy with the pistol yet but that shouldn't take too long to smooth out.

Friday, 2 July 2010



Right then - some proper progress now with our greenskinned friends - I've finally finished all the orks from the Black Reach set, just the Deffkoptas to do now.

Realm of Battle board is also continuing apace, although a word to the wise: I thought it might be a good idea to get the scenery painting set, and then intended to use the brown basecoat with my spray gun (generic bottom fed external mix gun), but I found that the paint, even when very dilute, quickly clogged the nozzle - much worse than standard paints. In the end I just went with the big "wall painting" brush that they give you in the set and that worked just fine. Going to have to spend a while cleaning that spray gun now - grrrr.

Anyway, without further ado - here are the Black Reach orks in all their glory - as usual, comments / suggestions very welcome:


The whole gang (click to embiggen):


Nearly finished the Eagle Warriors tactical squad too, so I'll post these hopefully next week, but painting time will be limited this weekend as we'll be in the Lake District walking about with the doggies. Have a good week folks.

Monday, 28 June 2010

Infantry time - SM scout


Had some metal scouts hanging around so I thought I'd see what they look like painted up in the Eagle Warriors scheme. So here we go:

Managed to get the eyes fairly straight, but a little large so he's got that look of being engaged in a stare-out contest. I guess that it's good for a sniper to have keen vision though eh? Here's a bit of detail from the back:

...and a stab at freehanding the chapter icon:

Got a couple more of these guys to do, but I think I'll focus on the main batch of Black Reach marines and get them out of the way first. The Realm of Battle gameboard is also on the cards, all base-coated and ready to go. More on that later...

Anyway, that's all for now - have a good one folks - hope the dice are kind to you this week!

Tuesday, 22 June 2010


More progress on the Eagle Warriors. Here's a whirlwind. First thing I've done with involving extensive use of the airbrush. Masking is a bit of a fiddle, but wow is it ever faster than painting with a normal brush. The blue in this case was done with Vallejo's model air series paints rather than GW paints (a bit easier to use in the airbrush without blocking the needle up), I think it's a reasonable match with the work I've already done. Tried a coat of citadel spray-on satin-finish varnish on this one - big mistake as I got a "frosting" effect on the blue and had to go over it again with the airbrush to clean it up. Don't ask me why I chose such a large model to try it out on... maybe it's because I'm very very stupid. Anyway, at the moment the finish is really mega-clean with no "battle damage" - this and a bit of mud for the tracks will be added when I pluck up the courage... All suggestions welcome for the best approach to weathering / scratching up this beast.
Also - infantry are now properly underway - here's a Black Reach marine work-in-progress showing the Eagle Warriors shoulder pad (bone saw to cut away the old pad, then new pad fixed in place / edges neatened with green stuff)

Monday, 14 June 2010

Third army underway... Eldar time

Trying to paint your way through an army without losing momentum is quite hard, so how do you make it easier? - well, by starting another army to add to your "to do" list of course! And then when you've got figures in various stages of completion all over your house, what's the best thing to do? - well start ANOTHER army of course! - Yay!

Ahem... well I suppose variety is the spice of life so this way I can flit between different figures as much as my goldfish-like attention span requires. I've started an Eldar force, to add to the Eagle Warriors marines (Whirlwind underway for these guys by the way, pics to follow), and the good old Orks (Black Reach Orks nearly done, got to do those crazy helicopters next).
As best-wife-in-the-world bought Maugan Ra for me, I guess the Altansar craftworld would be appropriate fluff-wise, plus I like the whole gothic / skeletal / angel-of-death type imagery that you could tap into for them. So here we go, Altansar Eldar #1 - I've started with a guardian to try out a purple / red / black colourscheme:

... and here is the (old style) weapons platform and gunners:

I think the purple and red works OK for this squad, but maybe for vehicles and further squads of guardians I might go more purple and black and less red for a more brooding look. By the way, the weapons platform is magnetised, so that the various weapons can be swapped in as required, only got this one painted so far though.

Monday, 7 June 2010

Landspeeder storm!

Phew, what a complicated little model! - Way more work than a tank, but enjoyable. I found out to my cost that painting every little bit before you assemble is a good idea, particularly on something with so many fiddly little nooks and crannies. This model isn't some clever addition to my Eagle Warriors' arsenal with a purpose - I just bought it because I think it looks SO COOL.

Anyway, this weekend I also managed to have a go with the posh DSLR camera that I have borrowed, so here's a first attempt at some better (ish) photography... Basically this the camera used straight out of the box without any special settings applied or any post-processing, but certainly better than the little low-res point-and-shoot:

...and here's another shot trying to focus on the front and blurring out the back which I think worked out quite well:

One thing I noticed from doing the shot above is that if you have the camera really close to the subject you get this slective focus effect, but if you pull back and take the shot from a distance then you get a more open "everything in focus" look. I'm a complete novice at photography so any pointers you might have would be very helpful - please leave a comment if you've got any tips for me - ta.
Here's a couple more pics:

...and finally, our old friend the black reach dreadnought again, some slightly better pics than the previous ones:

Next time I'll have a crack at some infantry.

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Purchases propagate productivity... perhaps

...no not in terms of minis bought and painted, but I've been busy all the same.

1. Built a nice glass display cabinet from Ikea, which is now sat there looking empty - adding to the motivational guilt. Yay (?)

2. Borrowed a nice shiny Canon Eos 450D to try to make a better job of my terrible, terrible photography. All suggestions / tips welcome! (best place to start with settings on a DSLR like this would be most helpful).

3. The Eagle Warriors shoulder pads are working out well - pics to follow.

and finally...

4. The best peace-and-quiet-producing tool ever... ladies and gentlemen, I give you: the Rawhide Spiral! - this keeps the doggy busy for HOURS so that I can get some stuff done. I'll leave you with a picture of our boys and a promise of some pics of minis once I get my head around this new camera... happy painting / gaming wherever you are.

Thursday, 20 May 2010

A couple of orks from AoBR, and yeah, I know, photography lacking somewhat... still working on that

A bit of gun-barrel-drilling might be a good idea too - just noticed that while posting this. Better think about making it so that somebody actually reads this at some point too, so I think I'll head on over to the good folk at From The Warp to see if they'll add this blog to their list.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Armies at the end of my wristies...

OK so it looks like Squats don't exist any more (remember them? I used to love those bikes), so where to begin was the order of the day...
Well, back when I was a wee lad, my best mate Damian and I played orks and marines respectively, so that seemed like a nice nostalgic place to start. For a starter pack aimed at someone interested in both Orks and Marines, I guess that the Assault on Black Reach box set can't really be beaten. The core of a force for both races, plus templates and a rulebook - yay! So that was purchase number 1. I should have stopped there for a while but oh no... more about that later. Anyway, to kick things off here's a fairly crummy photo of the marine dreadnought from the AoBR box - very minimal simple sandy base and no markings yet. I've gone for the "Eagle Warriors" chapter for my marines - for gaming purposes I figured you could play it just as a generic marine force or perhaps include some converted characters from the Ultramarines, which is where this second founding chapter apparently came from. Not standard smurf-marines then, and an attractive sharp colour scheme, but at the same time they do have the advantage of having some shoulder pads available from GW with the iconography already moulded in.

The photography leaves at lot to be desired at the moment I'm afraid - waiting on a decent camera, but at least you get the idea of the "clean and shiny" look that I'm going for with this chapter - no battle-damage, no weathering just yet although I might add this later - at the moment I'm keeping it clean and simple. The blue is Mordian blue foundation paint, shaded with a leviathan purple wash, and highlighted with lightened mixtures of Mordian blue. The white is a mixture of blue and black ink wash applied over Skull white, then pale blue up to flat white highlights. Scrolls and skulls etc are a mixture of scorched brown and bleached bone tones. Hope you like...