Centaurs….it had to be Centaurs

Finished up the pile of armored centaurs I have had (for a while now mostly).  This group includes both Rapier’s centaur hoplites 6GMF007 and armored with spear and shield 6GMF008, along with Microworld’s Centaur Nobles.  All of these models from both manufacturer are fantastic.  First a couple group shots.

centaurgroup2 centaurheavygroup1I mounted these cavalry a little more ‘traditionally’ the long way on my usual 40x20mm bases (there is one large 40x40mm in there though).  These pictures show both manufacturer’s are scale-wise basically the same.

centaurheavyfrontclose centaurheavysidecloseThe first photo shows two rapier centaur hoplites in the foreground with both types of Microworld figures in the background, the lower photo vice versa.  I suppose one could say the Rapier figures are a bit more ‘slight’ in the horse body.  The torso/heads are practically the same, and the ultimate effect is virtually the same.  Both figures have excellent detail.  While the Microworld figures have two different models per pack, they are fairly similar.  There are slight differences, but the armored skirts (i painted them as bronze, but they could easily be painted as if they were cloth) dominate both figures, making it difficult for there to even be much difference in detail.  They are still super, and even though I have a shedload of centaurs already, there may be more in the future.

The two Rapier figures are excellent as well (unfortunately I do not have a close of up of the spear and shield figure).  The shield a spear figure even has cross bars sculpted on the shield.  I’d be hard pressed to pick a favorite among all of them.

Finally just a couple photos of a small group of Microworld centaur archers.

centaurarcherwipcentaurarcherstand The photos on Microworld’s site probably do more justice to these figures than my terrible photos do (they have abs fer cryin’ out loud!).  I wanted to show the variety of horse colors I have used, as it is less obvious on the armors centaurs.  I have not painted yet, but also have some of rapier’s centaur archers.  They scale fairly close to these, but are again a bit ‘slighter’ than the Microworld figures.   More photo’s will be posted when I have finished the rapier figures (a bit down the road truth be told).

As I mentioned before I have been going gangbusters the last two weeks, so hopefully more posts shortly.

The trees are alive

I have finally finished all of the tree based lifeforms in the woodland army.  I hadn’t planned to get anymore, but I have been so pleased with my second forest giant attempt (the first one I have already posted), that I am tempted to get a third…

forestgiant2front

I knew I wanted something different for this guy.  I wasn’t looking for Halloween per se, but I knew I wanted orange and dark colors.

forestgiant2leftside forsestgiant2behindright

I went a little out of my comfort zone painting this time.  I read a lot about tinting greys with color.  I.e. Bluish or reddish shadows, slightly tinted highlights, that sort of thing.  Normally though I try to stick to pretty neutral greys and whites.  This time I decided I wanted a slightly greenish hue to things (he is a ‘good guy’ after all), and I am really happy with the results.  I still stuck to dark browns for the shadows, but highlighting I added some of dark green military colors I have to my greys.  It’s not a professional grade paint job by any stretch, but I am really happy with him and stretching myself painting.

 

I also finished off the rest of my lesser treekin models.  If I could find the site again, I would link to where I first saw the idea of putting the clump flock on.  I any case, it is a shameless rip off.

treekin2 treekin3 treekin4I noticed partway through that if I just put the fluffy stuff on the arms, they ended up looking like woodland cheerleaders a bit (perfect if I ever get into blood bowl!) so I tried adding some to other parts of their body as well.  I used different colors as well.  All with questionable results in my opinion.  If I get more of them in the future, I think I will reassess how I finish them.  At the moment, I have many of them though (this last picture is not all the bases even)

forestgroup1

I have really been cranking things out lately.  I still have owlbears and a bunch of centaurs finished, along with more army list info and a few more things.  There may be a flurry of posting soon…

6mm and Gesso

  I’ve always used Krylon primer (of their various types over the years) as my main primer.  With my foray into 6mm though, I have started to think about alternatives.  Spraying 6mm minis seems to waste a LOT of primer for me, particularly since I don’t use the strip method so common to 6mm.  I have also started having problems with the primer reacting to plastic (particularly Reaper Bones minis), which is becoming harder to deal with since every primer company wants their stuff to ‘bond’ and changes their formula frequently.  On top of that recently here in the pacific northwest we have been having unusually high heat and humidity.

I’ve tried several brush on primers over the last few years, and while they were good for touch ups, Ive never been to fond of any of them.  Gesso is something I had seen around for a while, but the whole ‘slop it on and it will shrink’ just didn’t ring true for me.  I ended up using liquitex white gesso.  Lots of people suggest black gesso, I almost always prime white and wash with black though, so I stuck with white.  With the weather the way it has been, I decided to give things a try.  To start with I did as most sites suggest, and put the gesso on with no thinning.  I did this with some Descent minis I am painting (one of the ones I have had bad reactions with krylon too).   There is a Dystopian Wars carrier in here too.

orgrebelly spider

 

Needless to say, I was not super pleased with the result.  Neither of these are particularly detailed models, but on the spider in particular, you can clearly see some detail was gone over.  The Ogre belly is still showing brush strokes as well.  I next tried to slightly water down the Gesso.  Maybe two or three drops per tablespoon.

carrier

The Indian Javelin users I posted previously were also done with slightly watered down gesso.  From this picture you can see the coating is not particularly uniform, but not much in the way of detail is covered up.  The primary problem I had with slightly watered down Gesso was bubbling.  You can see a bit of it between the girders on the carrier picture here.  It is not visible on the javelin user pictures, but the space in behind the shield in particular are full of bubbles.  I found if I went extremely slow I could get good coverage with minimal bubbles, but it was taking me a minute plus per (6mm) model to do that.

Next I attempted to water down the Gesso even more extensively, over a 1 to one ratio this time.  Roughly the consistency or watered down skim milk (I know I’m offended by the idea too). 

gesso

Hopefully that the pic will give you an idea of how thin I was using the gesso.  Now when I prime 6mm, unlike larger pieces, I’m not to worried about complete over all coverage with a nice consistent coat.  The figures themselves rarely get handled other than the very edges, and I tend to put on fairly thick (dull) coats.  What I am looking for is mostly just a light dusting.  As an example, here is a pic of what I would characterize as a thick spray prime coat (for me).

primelizardmen  This is a very thick coat for me, but still thin, the high points there is still a bit of metal that isn’t quite exposed, but the coat is very thin.  After watering down Gesso I got this.

centauprime primecamel

As you can see, there is barely a coating on them (you can also see a comparison of rapier and microworld centaurs).  For my purposes, this was perfect.  the best part it was super easy.  On the camels I deliberately slopped the watered down gesso on.

owlbearwetprime camelwetprime

These pictures hopefully show how (deliberately) lackadaisical I was about applying the primer.  Its pooled up, there were lots of bubbles, etc.  After it dried though, presumably because of the watered down nature, there was no detail loss and no bubbles.  There were a few small spots of bare metal after ‘shrinkage’ but all of it within acceptable limits I think (as I said, I don’t expect the miniature itself to see heavy touching)

camelwithpaintprimeThis picture shows just one coat of thinned reaper palomino gold on one of the camels.  Still some dark from the metal coming through, but after a wash and highlights, it wont be visible at all.

 

I think overall I was pleased with my 6mm gesso primed results.  I will definitely be sticking to spray primer for bigger pieces in metal and polystyrene, but for alternative plastics and small scale, I think I will be using Gesso going forward.  If your minis are going to get handled a lot, I think maybe spray may still be the superior choice.  If you don’t like waste, don’t mind taking a little bit of extra time, and are ok with a thinner priming coat, then Gesso may work for you.

 

Some Warriors

Well, I haven’t finished them all (there are still another 120ish I think left), but I have gotten over half way….  I’ve got enough for the moment, so I am going to focus on some other stuff at the moment to paint (I have some dystopian wars, plus some miscellaneous 28mm stuff to paint).  I present, the Lizardman Warrior horde!

warriorgroup1 warriorgroupclose

I’d like to get double the amount I have currently at least, but the painting is pretty much exactly how I want it.

warrioraxeside1 warrioraxe2

When I started painting these guys I was going with a black wash after priming (which I will be posting about shortly).  I wasn’t crazy about this, I wanted my guys to be really bright.  So I started skipping the wash, going over with a coat of reaper pale green (09012)on them.  Then I wash with vallejo Green ink watered down a bit (but not a whole lot).  I tried a few other washes, but I for this situation I really like the ink.  Most of the washes were a little to blue for me, or didn’t glaze as well as the ink did.  I did use a bit of Nuln oil on parts (hand/weapon join and feet primarily).  I then put two highlight levels, using reaper Moth green (09248) and then alien goo(09294).  Right now I’m sticking with purple for the shields, but that may change.

I was really happy about how these came out.  I have enough of a Horde now for some actual battles.  Soon as I talk the GF into some fighting, I will try to post up an AAR.