Category Archives: Painting

Flying Lead Squad Pictures, Round One!

I’m done with my 2 squads for Flying Lead. I broke out my latex Zuzzy mat for the photos, and now my office smells like an explosion in a condom factory. You’d think after a couple of years, the smell would go away. Oh, well–here are the photos.
Space Marines in Legio Martial campaign colors
The Most Unimaginatively Painted Genestealers Ever, qty 12
I used Vallejo satin varnish on all of the figures. It gives power armor a nice moderate shine, and does the same job for crunchy bug exoskeletons. Oh, and remember when I said I was out of Vallejo matt varnish? Turns out the bottle was just hiding from me, and it’s actually Vallejo glaze medium that I’m out of. At least I have the matt varnish for clothing, so I can do my Imperial Guardsmen or Scouts the next time I get the urge to paint.
The paint jobs on both are on the sucky-but-serviceable side, which bugs me, but I can console myself with the thought that badly painted still beats unpainted any day of the week. I’ll have to get more practice in and shake off the rust.

My next project: do lots of cover and LOS breaking items so the Genestealers have a fair chance against all that firepower.

Ever have one of those days?

I’ve been taking advantage of work downtime to keep up with my painting. I finished the other 3 Terminators I mentioned in a previous post, and am also 90% finished with a brood of 12 Genestealers.
The Genestealers are a source of aggravation at the moment. Nothing, and I mean nothing, seemed to go right with them. I must be even rustier than I thought. 😛
The idea I had for them was to do them in black. So, I basecoated them in Vallejo Game Color Black, drybrushed and highlighted them in a 2:1 mix of Black and Vallejo Game Color Cold Grey, painted the claws and teeth in a 4:1 mix of Vallejo Game Color Gunmetal Metal and Black, and here’s where things started to go wrong. I forgot how strong the Citadel Badab Black wash was–once it dried, I discovered to my horror that all 12 Genestealers basically looked exactly like they did after they were first basecoated.
Yes, feel free to laugh. I’ll wait.
Back already? Okay. Note to self: next time, test things out before committing to 12 figures.
You can still sort of see the highlights if you look really close, but they don’t stand out enough in tablevision. I’m not going to worry about it for now–I have some gaming time planned this weekend, so I’ll fix them sometime after that.
The next thing that went wrong was the basing. I couldn’t for the life of me keep the PVA and sand off the feet of the Genestealers, so there’s kind of this sloppy “foot sinking in mud” effect going on that’s absolutely driving me bananuts.
The last 10%: drybrush the bases with 1:1 VGC Earth and VGC Bone White, clean up base edges with VGC Charred Brown, apply protective Future hardcoat, then after that dries, glop on some satin varnish. I’m hoping to finish that in the next couple of hours.

Finally painted something again…

My Space Marine Dreadnought and Terminator captain converted from plastic bits. Unfortunately, I ran out of Vallejo Matt Varnish at some point during the last couple of years, and somehow never got around to ordering more from The Warstore. So they’re still in their protective Future glosscoat for now. 😛
Venerated Legionary Brutus, Centurion Lucius Crassus
The important thing, though, is that I actually painted something!
I wasn’t feeling particularly adventurous, so the paint jobs are simple and basic, no fancy techniques used whatsoever. I liked the idea of having a bright ceremonial dress and a subdued campaign dress, so I painted them in the subdued campaign scheme of Vallejo Game Color Yellow Olive with the bling in the delightfully redundantly named Vallejo Game Color Gunmetal Metal. Centurion Crassus’s left arm heraldry plate retains the deep red ceremonial armor color, which I used Vallejo Game Color Gory Red for. In the ceremonial scheme, the bling is gold and the cloth bits would be linen white.
If I were still playing Warhammer 40,000, I’d probably never have gotten around to painting anything because the sheer quantities of stuff you have to paint makes me want 3 aspirins and a lay-down. Guncrawl isn’t enough to motivate me either because I wrote the thing, so playing it still feels like I’m working…and when I take a day off, the last thing I want is to be anywhere near work stuff. So, my stuff just kind of sat in the closet doing nothing for a pretty long while.
I discovered Flying Lead by Ganesha Games last week, and it awakened my inner gamer big time. I really like the system–it’s the first one in a very long time that actually excites me enough to grab some figures and start playing. It’s also what drove me to start painting my figures again, because you DON’T need a lot of stuff to play, just a squad for each side. Matter of fact, you don’t even need that much, you can play with fewer figures if that’s all you have on hand. That’s a much more attainable threshold for me than having to buy and paint 40-50 figures per army, not to mention a heck of a lot more affordable. 
I’m gonna paint 3 more Terminators with storm bolters and powerfists to round out my little Flying Lead squad. After that comes the even easier stuff–mostly Tyranids of various flavors.

UPDATE: I still have nearly full bottles of Vallejo Satin Varnish and Gloss Varnish. The Satin Varnish worked great for knocking down the Future hardcoat’s gloss to a nearly matte finish, and doesn’t overly dull the metallic bits like the Flat does.

More Citadel Wash testing

Following up on the Citadel Washes review I posted a few days ago, I painted a couple of human figures to see how the Citadel Washes work on clothing and flesh.

2 Copplestone troopers and one of the bots from the review

(Now, I’m nowhere nearly as good a painter as I used to be in my youth, back when I could actually see what I was doing with the brush, so pardon the lack of eyes and absence of fancy highlighting.)

The fatigues are a 1:1 mix of Vallejo Caiman Green and Vallejo Khaki, while the boots, undershirts, weapons, and gear are a 1:1 mix of Vallejo Black and Vallejo Cold Grey. The fleshy bits are a 3:1 mix of Vallejo Dwarf Skin and Elf Skintone. The lady’s hair is Vallejo Scorched Brown, while the guy’s hair is Vallejo Beasty Brown. The fatigues and gear received a wash of Devlan Mud, while the exposed flesh and hair received a wash of Ogryn Flesh. I applied a coat of straight Future to seal the paint, and brushed on a layer of Vallejo Matte Varnish after the Future dried.

When I get some more air-drying clay, I’ll be blending the figures’ integral stub bases into the slottabases, then finishing the bases properly.

Citadel Wash Set Review

I mentioned in the Carnifex review that I had also purchased the new Citadel Wash Set, which comes with all 8 of the new washes. I had a chance to try them out earlier while painting up some Copplestone Castings Terminator Robots to use as security robots.

The washes, with a Vallejo Game Color 17ml bottle

The 8 colors, in order of usefulness, are: Devlan Mud, Badab Black, Ogryn Flesh, Gryphonne Sepia, Thraka Green, Baal Red, Asurmen Blue, and Leviathan Purple. They come in dinky little 12ml bottles that, at first blush, made me grumble a little about how it seems that every time Games Workshop comes out with a new line of paints, the bottles shrink and the prices grow. I popped open the lids, and was annoyed to see that the bottle design doesn’t significantly improve on the problems that the older flip top bottles had. I’m planning to transfer them to spare Vallejo dropper bottles, because I really don’t like flip top pots.
The next step was to paint something so I could give them a try. Since I needed the Copplestone robots for an upcoming game anyway, it was a good opportunity to kill two birds with one stone. I basecoated the robots in Vallejo Sombre Grey, then painted the weapons, shoulders, hip actuators, knee actuators, and the thigh piping a 1:1 mix of Vallejo Black and Vallejo Cold Grey. The same 1:1 mix of Black and Cold Grey was applied to the bases.

I had 5 robots finished, so I looked over the colors. I decided to use the Badab Black wash because I wanted a dark, slightly desaturated, and somewhat oily look to the robots. I basically just dipped the brush in the pot and glopped the stuff all over the figures, with the occasional pause to wick away the excess with the brush. This is the result:

Group shot: 5 Copplestone Castings Terminator Robots
Close-up shot

I was more than a little surprised at how easy the washes were to use. The consistency is quite a bit thicker than than I expected, they go on smoothly, and they settle down into the recesses nicely. Straight from the bottle, they do stain and darken colors significantly, so they would seem to work best with lighter shades of the colors you want to use. I think they would be terrific to use for beginners, or getting those boring figures that you have to paint a lot of out of the way quickly.

I don’t think advanced painters are going to get much out of these washes, especially if they’re already used to mixing their own washes and glazes. For beginners, though, they’re a good confidence builder, as the initial results are fairly tableworthy, and they can move on to layering and highlighting from there. Also, they dry pretty flat, as you can see in the photos. (The figures aren’t even varnished yet.)

My initial grumbling about the small quantity and flip top pots aside, I like these washes.

Update: More testing here.