Wednesday 29 December 2010

Plastic Everywhere

During Chrismast break I could do any painting since all of my stuff is in Lublin, so I decided to put together and prepare everything I have to paint after New Years. So on the waitig list as mentioned before are Land Raiders, Rhino and Attack Bikes. I've already put together both Land Raiders. In order to be able to paint the interriors I left one side of hull and top loose. I'll glue them after finishing paintjob on transport compartments. Also as it can be seen in pics, side sponsons with both Lascannons and Flamers are magnetized so they can be changed to fit different rosters. There's third combination of side arms with hurricane bolters, but since there's no more sponson parts I'm forced to improvise and design them from scratch with plasticard, I already got the main shape, now I'll have to work on pole and on some details to make it less plain. As well as side weapons top turrets aren't attached permanently, for the same reason.

Now I'll be working on side hatches on Land Raiders and both side and top hatches on Rhino. Plan is to drill plastic parts, insert metal pole and make some hinges so doors can be opened and closed at will ;)

Magnetic revolution will also affect Attack Bikes, where there'll be option to switch between Multi-Melta and Heavy Bolter. It will require some work on couple of parts but what's plasticard and metal for ;)

I still have one Bike waiting to be assambled and another one
somewhere in the mail along with next Rhino but
I guess they will arrive after New Year so they will be last one in line.
If everything goes well and airbrush will arrive without delay I think paintjob on those should be done even by mid January, but as always when I try to predict optimistic end term, real life comes into work and all itinerary goes to trash. So for now I'm not saying anything in order not ot jinx it :D

Friday 24 December 2010

Merry Christmas Folks !

Hey there! I'd like to , on Viruk's and mine behalf, wish you all Merry Christmas. May you spend this jolly time with your family and friends. I hope you can catch a bit of distance to everyday trivia and focus on whats reall important to you. Also have an awesome New Year's Eve.

On that festive note, a Christmas pop-classic ;)

Tuesday 21 December 2010

Let's get this party started

Another batch of Ultramarines coming right up. This time fast attack/heavy support is on the agenda. 4x Attack Bikes, 1xRhino (well razorback actually but it will be constructed as rhino), 1x Land Raider, 1 x Land Raider Crusader/Redeemer. A lot off plastic and even more fun to do. I have some creative altering in mind like extra armour out of plasticard or some personalised battlefield add-ons. Also 2011 will officialy be the year when I'll get back together with my airbrush (yay!). I have some creative painting in mind, involving some extra damage/rust effects on tanks and some chrome "chopper style" suit for bikes. I won't probably be paiting any big freehands on Land Raiders....this time. Later that year I mean to buy LR just for me and to strip it apart to create some overview model with complete custom interior.

Still it's only the first part, I'm waiting for remaining Rhino and one more Attack Bike.
So far only picture of boxes since right now I'm at home and have only basic equipment. I'm hoping to get it out of boxes and to clean parts and get it ready for glue and paint back in Lublin ;)

And as for Christmas of my favourite English carols about one of our southern neighbours, Czech king Wenceslas :D (slightly off-traditional performance by Irish Rovers from...Canada )

Monday 20 December 2010

Cryx taking to the skies

Just released on the PP website. An entirely new Cryx 'jack. Looks very interesting and I will definitely buy it once it's available :)

Sunday 19 December 2010

Late night WIPs

Here's a quick look at what I'm working on at the moment. As you can see I'm continuing work on the Easterlings. The pic isn't great as it's already past 10 pm here and taking pictures with artificial light and no background set up is not a great idea. Anyway, this is just a WIP so it doessn't really matter that much at this point.
This time I'm painting only archers, 4 Kataphrakts and 2 Banner Bearers. The Banners will be the most interesting part here as they are nicely sculpted and have fairly big size (especially the larger one). I think I'll go for NMM here as true metalics don't usually look too good on this kind of surface.
I started with the armor. I like to have this part finished before moving on to other areas like clothes, weapons, quivers, etc. At this point I'm more than happy with my recent hobby shopping, especially the Gold set from Andrea. In particular the Light White Gold color. While painting gold, I would always mix gold with silver for the penultimate highlight. This paint has just the perfect shade for this stage.
I may finish this batch of minis in 2010 but with the busy Christmas schedule I cannot be sure. After these, I will work on several Harad minis and a mounted version of Saruman.
Alrighty then, time to wrap things up and call it a day. One more "Christmas" accent and see you in the next post :)

Wednesday 15 December 2010

BLT and his swarm

I've finally managed to deal with some of my own backlog. I've painted the remaining four bane thralls which means that the unit is now complete. I wanted to give them a cohesive look that would combine metallics with purple (a color of choice for my Cryx army - I'm trying to add a touch of it, at least to the units). I basically speed painted them as I only want a solid tabletop quality for my units, otherwise it would take ages to paint them all.
I really like the sculpts, the fact that they are all multi part means that there's great potential for alternative poses. I tried to give each of them a slightly different pose. Still, my favorite part has to be the skull, I like the brow-like thingy around their eyes, gives them a kind of demonic look (of course in the WM-tongue-in-cheek way). So, here's my first complete WM unit.

Hopefully other units will follow in the future. I'm thinking about Bile Thralls as I like the sculpts and they have some potential within the game. But then the Satyxis Raiders look even more impressive. As you can see, the hobby aspect is the most important criterion for me ;)
Bane Lord Tartarus was a challenge. First of all, the sculpt. Lots of parts that needed to be glued in a position that made painting some of the areas of his armor a bit tricky.
Before painting I quickly checked for some background information on the model. This sometimes helps, at least it can give some inspiration. In this case it turned out to be a good idea. As a human, Tartarus was known as Horfar Grimmr, a powerful Molgur chieftain who suffered an agonizingly slow (one month of "purifying" tortures) death that was supposed to remove the taint from his soul. His tormented soul wandered in the shadows for centuries to be retrieved by the lich lord Tenobrous who joined with remains of some of the defeated warrior-kings. Together with a rune-inscribed armor and the unholy axe Rivender, he became a force to be reckoned with. His most impressive skill is the ability to travel easily between the human and the spirit realm.
This story is nicely reflected in the game as he can turn killed warrior into a grunt in his Bane unit. With Reach, Weapon Master and special attack (Thresher), he is able to wreak havoc in the enemy lines (at least before he's taken down since he's not too tough...).
Knowing the background, I tried to give him a more ghostly look. I also wanted to make sure that he stands out among the Bane swarm. started with the whirlwind-like thing at the bottom. I liked the effect and decided to add more of a similar color on the model. I ended up making it a bit too bright but I'm rather pleased with the effect anyway. It took me a while to come up with an idea to paint his axe. Initially I wanted to give it a greenish-blueish look but in the end decided that some variety would be a better option. My younger brother said that now it looks a bit like a living organism. I like this idea :)
Now I have another batch of the Easterlings waiting for me. Archers, cavalry and two banners. I think I'll end up finishing them in January as the last days of December will probably be quite busy.
Almost forgot - for today's music corner, a song that somehow seems suitable ;)

Tuesday 14 December 2010

Santa Claus is comin to town

In fact this year he's arrived a bit earlier. I took the liberty of ordering my gifts by myself (with my wife's kind consent ;) and used the opportunity to stock up on some of the Andrea paints. I've already written about them earlier . Basically the idea is that you buy a set of six shades of a given color. I've found the black set more than useful so laying my hands on other ones was just a matter of time. I decided to get a white, flesh, silver and gold set. Seemed like the most useful choices for me as I find it hard to get a satisfying effect using GW's metallics (especially when I work on larger flat surfaces). I really like the soft tones of colors in the white set. I will give it a try when I begin working on a mounted Saruman model that's also a part of the large commission I'm working on at the moment. The flesh set also looks very promising as the colors are nicely matched in this one. The gold set will definitely come in handy as I use this color frequently. I was a little surprised by the inks as the bottles are slightly different than the ones I'm used to - see the picture. It seems like an interesting solution. The only problem is that the black ink in the gold set was not packed very well and I had to spend a while removing it from other bottles and from the box.

Buying sets like these might seem like a solution for lazy painters. This is probably true but not entirely. Andrea's paints mix very well with other acrylic paints. Also, if you want to get a really nice effect mixing them is still a must.
And to be honest, I'm a sucker for buying paints. I probably have more than I really need and a number of them is rarely used. I treat it as a part of hobby. Collecting miniatures, collecting paints, almost like two sides of the same coin. And since I paint large numbers of minis I like to have more options available at hand.
Four "military" colors from Reaper and a pigment fixer from MIG complete my Christmas list. I really like paints from Reaper as they have excellent coverage and good consistency. The downsides are that the bottles are a bit smaller than P3, Vallejo, etc. and they tend to clog after a while.
Now that all the paints are nicely assembled, the only thing lest to do is to start using these. Christmas break is getting closer so I may find some time for a solid painting session.
And here's yet one more classic. Somehow I am drawn the music from 40s. It seems to me that singers didn't try to go all gaga about how controversial and original they were and simply put their energy into making really good show. They definitely had what many of today's artists lack; authenticity and charisma.

Monday 13 December 2010

Pick of the week

I'll venture slightly off the beaten track and leave the world of painting miniatures for a brief moment. Let's move to another realm, one that doesn't have much in common with reality. This one's pretty cool, so who cares? With the official debut of the Pirates of the Caribbean On Stranger Tides trailer there can be no other piece of news to fill this one, aye lads?

Tuesday 7 December 2010

Chariots of fire

The chariots are finally ready, it took me a while to add the final touches. Overall fun minis to paint but the amount of details and the number of parts make it a bit annoying at times. Definitely not my best work up to date but a pretty decent effect methinks.
The charioteer goes first.

Not much to say really. I simply followed the color scheme I used with the Khandish infantry and cavalry I'd painted earlier. The king required more effort as with the dominance of red I wanted to make sure I used different shades of this color.

It looks quite impressive once assembled and painted but when I think about putting it in a package and having it sent to the commissioner... I quickly switch to other more nagging issues.

I am going to switch back to painting WM minis for a while now. The second half of the Bane Knights unit has been waiting for a long while. I'm also still hesitating how to paint Tartarus. A very nice model with great potential. I will probably go for a partly metallic, partly ghostly look. Still, the axe leaves me wondering what to do about it. I will definitely feel nice to finally paint some of my minis as I've been busy doing commissions for a longer while. I want to have them ready sooner than later so I'll need to strike a balance between quality and quantity here.

And to finish off, here's a classic. I'm an avid jogger (especially in winter, somehow jogging in the most enjoyable for me during this season of the year) but I haven't seem this movie yet. I'll need to watch it one day.

Tuesday 30 November 2010

10000 eyes

...or rather pairs of eyes. Or rather pageviews. At least since I added the counter. Anyway, I thought I'd take this opportunity to thank everyone who follows Independent Painters. 45 followers and many other visitors, some really nice comments. Thank you guys, we (me and Haldir) really appreciate that. And keep those comments coming :)

Here's big cheers to all of you (and a cool song by TooL - one of my personal favourites).

Monday 29 November 2010

Winter Wonderland

Finally some time to post something up. Due to massive load of "time wasters" such as University etc. I'm not currently working on anything new. Nonetheless I'll post some pics that are 3 months old right now. It was supposed to be my entry for O-R Awards and as such it was held in dark corners of my archives not to spoil initial "wow effect", but since Awards are postponed indefinitely I'll work on something new ;)

Here's a compilation of pictures of Two Towers version of Haldir a.k.a the Helm's Deep Haldir.

And here's a link to that piece on CMON so you could leave your rating there ;)

As for traditional music finish. Since Viruk took my all time favourite in his previous entry, I'll use second best for what's going out there ;)

Sunday 28 November 2010

Let it snow

That's right, snow has finally fallen and it seems like winter has arrived. Right now it looks pretty cool and with the low temperatures the snow is holding nicely.
I've taken some time during the weekend to finally finish off the Khandish Cavalry. They took me a while, mainly due to the fact that I've been pretty busy recently. I went for the same color scheme I'd used for the infantry so there are no surprises here.

Next minis in line are the chariots (a regular one + one with the king). Lots of details on these so it looks like I'll be busy painting away during the next few days. However, since I've felt that I needed a break from Lotr minis I've decided to finish my Bane Knights unit (4 grunts and Tartarus). Different style, slightly different scale and different approach to miniatures - can't wait to lay my brush on them ;)
I won't be going crazy with these ones as I simply want them looking decent for gaming. I'll probably pay a little more attention to Tartarus as I want him to stand out among the crowd (as if his height wasn't enough...). Anyway, the stage is set and here they are at the moment, all black...

And in case you were wondering what happened to the Pick of the week... It will be back, soon. I just thought that since I've been a slacker and haven't updated the blog with any content since the previous one I decided to wait a little longer. It may become a regular practice but I'm still going to stick to the "Pick of the week" ("Pick of the fortnight" wouldn't sound well, would it?).
To finish off this post, here the epitome of cool himself with a very suitable song:

Sunday 21 November 2010

Pick of the Week

Since work has been obliterating my free time recently and I haven't done any significant progress on my current commission I thought I'd start a new series of entries at Independent Painters.
Each week on Sunday I'll be posting a link to a tutorial/picture/video related (or vaguely related) to the hobby. These will be mostly things that will be particularly useful for me, so you can expect links connected with Privateer Press, Cryx, and painting in general. I will simply be stuffing things that I've either already found useful or other that I want to have a crack at in the future.
So, to make a long story short, here's something that has struck me as simple yet very effective. An excellent guide on painting dead flesh found at BOLS.

I will definitely give it a go as I love the effect of veins showing through the skin.

Sunday 14 November 2010

Goodbye Horses

Haven't had too much time for painting lately but here's a quick update on the Khandish Cavalry I'm currently working on. These minis are also part of the big Lotr commission. The horses are basically finished and I won't be doing anything more with them. Now only the warriors and I will be closer to completing the whole commission. I'm particularly looking forward to working with the chariots - excellent details and very cool minis, especially the Khandish King. I should be ready with these by the end of next week and I will move on to work on the chariots. In the meanwhile I'll try to get the rest of my Bane Knights finished, but that's a different story.
The pics aren't great but it's already dark and I haven't had time to take pictures during the day. That's all for now and I'll leave you with a song from the title (anyone who's seen "Clerks 2" will probably crack a smile ;).

Wednesday 10 November 2010


The Privateer Press holiday wishlist has arrived and I have to admit - it's quite interesting. Nice army bundles for each faction (together with plastic templates and tokens). Nice selection there, definitely a great way to get into WM/Hordes or to expand your army.

The whole P3 color range.

Still, what I find even more interesting is the Formula P3 Paint Set. I have quite a few paints from various producers. I paint a lot, which means that I have to replenish my resources from time to time. I've been recently thinking about buying a complete paint set. It would make painting much faster and more efficient (more colors=less mixing). P3 paints seem to be the perfect choice here as they combine quantity of paint (18 ml compared with 17 ml - Vallejo, 12 ml - Citadel) with excellent quality. There's a lot of pigment in the paint so you don't need to put too many layers to get a solid color and the paint stays in perfect consistency even after a long time (I've had some P3 paints for a few years now and they're good as new). Of course, I've had experience in using different paints. I was also considering Reaper paints (nice bottles, perfect consistency, good quality) but the bottles are bit smaller and they tend to clog after a while.
So, it seems like P3 paints may be a good choice, especially taking into account that I will be painting a lot of PP minis (I'm working on my Cryx army and in the future I will possibly start a Hordes army - I'm thinking Trollbloods). The only thing I don't like much about them is the lid design. The plastic tab is hard to open and after using it for a while it's easy to get some paint on your fingers while opening it. Still, the advantage is that the paint stays good for a longer time.

Now, what do you get in the P3 Paint Set? Basically, that's the whole range of paints, all of the colors + some bonuses. These include three paints and a DVD about Core Techniques. Together with shipping it makes about 240$ This is tempting...
Has anyone bought any of these holiday bundles? If yes, did you have to wait long for the parcel? (I know this was put on PP page yesterday but I guess some people might read this post after a while).


I've just noticed that there are no metallics among the paints in the set offered by PP. However, I came across an interesting online store in the USA, Their offer is even better. You get all the paints for 165$ (only the metallics are not there but they are replaced by Vallejo Game Color paints - Polished Gold, Glorious Gold, Bright Bronze and Brassy Brass). Nice offer indeed. The only thing that bothers me is that it's in the USA, which means that if I wanted to buy it, I'd have to pay much more in fact (taxes suck). It's not that bad though, as there are ways to skip this nasty part of the deal (and the guys at thewarstore write about it explicitly in their FAQ).

Friday 29 October 2010

Men of East, men of gold

Here's the finished group. Not much to say really. I simply completed the missing spots. Black was done using mainly old trusted Andrea Black set, and the swords were painted using Citadel silvers (probably my favorite metallics). As I said earlier, I also made the bases brighter. I think the bright static grass adds a nice element of contrast to the dark brown base. It's a classic example of speed painting but I wouldn't say I was cutting corners. And one more shot.

And that's it, another part of the large commission work completed. Khandish cavalry is next in line + chariots (one of the coolest minis in the entire Lotr range). But that will have to wait until next week.

Tuesday 26 October 2010

Work in Progress

I thought I'd post a quick update on what I'm currently working on. So, here they are, 20 Easterling warriors painted as part of a larger commission.

At his point the gold metallics are pretty much done. I have to say that I simply love paints from the Vallejo liquid gold range. These are great time savers, but also work extremely well with regular acrylic paints/washes. I started off with a solid basecoat of old gold, followed by some drybrushing using brighter shades of gold and a final, very light touch of mithril siver. After that, I washed it with devlan mud. The characters (captains/heroes) were given one more touch of mithril silver, followed by leviathan purple and thraka green washes. This is supposed to give the armor some more definition. Works pretty well in my opinion,though the pictures (especially at this stage) do not do the painting justice.

Having dealt with armor I moved on to their clothes. I started by giving them a solid coat of mechrite red. This function as a base, from which I gradually worked the color up to finish with Flat Red (Vallejo model color). I find working with reds a bit time-consuming but I guess that after laying a couple of layers of each highlight the colors look decent.

I will move on to painting their shoes and belts next. They should be ready in a couple of days. The bases are dark at this stage but this will be improved as I plan to add some bright static grass. The rims will be painted with dark brown, which should also add some warmth.

It's a typical speed painting job for me. I work on a larger batch of minis simultaneously to move on with the commission faster. This requires some compromises as it's hard to maintain top-notch quality of painting in this way. Still, I try to use at east a few highlights for each color.

Saturday 23 October 2010

Winds of Change

There, it's done. The winds are blowing. Took me longer than I had expected to get round to it but I've finally added a few changes to the structure of the blog. I tried to put more emphasis on the functionality and the new layout is supposed to reflect this principle. I've removed some bits that I didn't really like about Blogger (navbar, a separate blog header) and I've also chosen a different template. I hope that the new arrangement will be clearer and will make it easier to follow what's new at Independent Painters. There are still some things that I need to work on (I'm still thinking about the colors of text in the topic of an entry and the date, the banner should blend in better with the backgroung etc.). Big thanks go to Stan (the same guy who created the banner for helping me out with some technicalities). Also, I should point out that the background comes straight from the Jungle - it can be found (with several other at If you have any suggestions about the format, layout or content of the blog feel free to leave a comment!

Now, back to hobby-related stuff. I've finally found some time for a game of Warmachine. This time it was my entire Cryx force (the painted part of it - I try to use only painted models while gaming) against a quickly assembled Menoth force based on Reznik.

I should definitely try to get more opportunities to play as it's so easy to forget the rules... I haven't played since holidays! Anyway, we (me and my younger brother) decided to play an open game and try to quickly lead to a clash without hiding around. To make a long story short (please forgive lack of details here as it was my... fourth game ever and I was mostly busy trying to remember the rules), here are some of my thoughts after the game;

- I have definitely misused the Bane Thralls and waited too long to use them in game. Their charge came too late and they failed to inflict serious damage,
- Pistol Wraith is cool and if used carefully can make enemy units' life more difficult,
- I have failed to take advantage of arc nodes as I pushed the chickens into the fray, which rendered them pretty much useless (Bastions do hit hard, especially when they are boosted by some offensive spells).

A bit chaotic and not too cohesive, I know. As I said, I'm still mainly focused on learning the rules and developing some tactics. Time for detailed battle reports will come sooner or later (or much later).

An unexpected guest drops by to check out the situation on the table.

The decisive moment came when I decided to use Denny's feat and charge the remaining two Deathrippers into Reznik. I only needed to get rid of a single and wounded Bastion that was standing in my way. I activated the Pistol Wraith, hit him once and managed to roll two one's for the second shot. Clearly, the gods of dice were against me on this day. Still, it was a very enjoyable game with the momentum shifting from one side to the other on a few occasions. Hopefully, more games will follow in the nearest future! I'll finish at this point, leaving you with a very nice live version of the classic from the title of this entry.

Wednesday 13 October 2010

Far East Band

Having a very limited access to the Internet is a pain in the neck. Still, it's better than no access at all. My Internet provider has failed to deliver for more than two weeks now and I ended up borrowing a mobile device from my brother. So yes, I'm back online though the speed of my connection is terribly slow...

Anyway, I managed to paint part of a big commission that I'm currently working on. First off, the Khandish Warriors. Pretty nice minis with great details. Still, I smile when I try to imagine myself running with a banner like that attached to my back. These minis remind me of Mongol warriors, similar style of helmets and clothes. The cavalry in particular, but this will be a topic for a separate update.

I used my old trusted Andrea black set for their clothes and mixed vallejo game red with model (flat red) red for the helmets and banners. Somehow, I've never felt comfortable using GW blood red. It dries too quickly (even on a wet palette) and the paint needs several carefully laid layers to look decent.

I also managed to finish a small group of Abrakhan Guard. I like the concept - no other minis from this range of minis are sculpted similarly. I like working with GW purples so it felt nice to work with liche purple and warlock purple. These colors nicely complement each other and it's fairly easy to create smooth highlights using these two.

The Golden King of Harad is another example of interesting concept and a very decent sculpt. My wife said that his pose and his mask remind her of some of the common images of death. I guess there is some truth in it as the mini has a slightly menacing look to it.

Now, onto the Easterlings - a solid group of twenty infantrymen is waiting to be painted. It shouldn't take too long as I will only need to focus on the two dominant colors - gold and red.

And here's one of the songs that was in my head when I was working on these minis:

Wednesday 22 September 2010


I just finished first part of devastator squad. A little mix and match with the arm pads. Tactical one can help to assign them to first tactical unit, and Devastators one will identify them as second, devastator, unit when third unit (another tactical) will be ready.

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