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Miliciens and More Experiments with Washes

I started to paint a few of my Canadian Militia last week and finished them up today.

I am relatively happy with the way they turned out, but not as happy with the way my Mohawks turned out. I’m experimenting with washes to help give some depth to my painting. The Mohawks are the product of dry-brushing to show depth.

I purchased GW Bedab Black wash and GW Devlan Mud wash and used them on these two figures. They look horrible after the wash, but much better after another heavy dry-brush/coat of paint on the shirts, leggings, and skin.

My question to the more talented painters out there, am I doing the wash wrong? Do you put it on the whole figure or only on the crevices? I’ve never really used this before and would like some input?

The following pics show the figure block painted, washed all over, then a final tidy up with another coat on the flatter surfaces.

The white shirt had bedab black wash used and the buff shirt had devlan mud wash applied. Click on them for a larger view.

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Further Canoe Progress

I’ve had a bit more time to work on the canoe. This time instead of using sand paper, I went whole hog and broke out the dremmel tool. I threw out a lot of dust, but was able to work on it at a much faster pace.

I really like where it’s at right now, I have only some minor smoothing to do and it’s ready for some green stuff to be added for the details. This will finally make it look like a canoe I hope. A few seems in the right places.

I will say that the amount of dust I threw up while caving this scared me a little. I wore a mask for the most part, but still had while nostrils when finished. Who the hell knows what kind of stuff you are throwing around when sanding plumbers epoxy? This has lead me to look into creating a dust catcher. Once upon a time (after two years of schooling) I was a dental technician for about 60 days. But we did use a lot of equipment that is used in model making as we were custom sculpting and casting tiny teeth. One of the pieces of equipment that I will next try to create is a dust collector. Basically a vacuum with a head that sits right next to the dremmel and sucks in all the dust. I have an old vacuum cleaner in the basement that should do the trick.

Anyway, here’s where we are at.

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A Few Minutes Work

I had a few minutes while my wife was in the shower to try shaping the canoe. It went pretty well, I’m loping forward to getting some more time soon.

After looking at my reference, I think I will have to try and put more of a point on the end, it’s definately a canoe shape, but some fine tuning is in order.

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New Project: VSF vs. Alien Invasion with Zombie Rules

I’ve been waiting a long time for a package to arrive recently and that has brought a long time reading message boards/blogs and surfing miniature companies. This has lead me to expand the number of sources that I read on a regular basis. One of the new additions to the daily check is the Lead Adventures forum. I have been a staunch TMP reader and contributor for quite some time, but finding Lead Adventures has been a real eye opener. It is what TMP could be if photos were allowed (come to the 21st century with the rest of us) the posters were generally friendly rather than grumpy. What a revelation it’s been, the sheer amount of eye candy and inspiration that it’s brought to me is fantastic.

OK, this lead me to the Lead Adventure miniatures line, which is VSF and Post-Apocalyptic. I have been looking for an excuse to get into 28mm and VSF for some time, and “BLAM” here it is. I have ordered a couple of blisters of the VSF stuff and am awaiting it’s arrival.

Through the LAF, I have also discovered a simple little set of Zombie Survivor rules called Akula’s AR:SE that seem fantastic. They are simple and allow solo play almost without any modification. So, score. But I’m not really a zombie guy, hmmm….

If not zombies, then who? Well, I’ve been eying the Zombismith Grey Aliens for even longer than VSF. So, why not have the zombies created by aliens? So problem settled then.

So, this will be a small side project to the current F&IW project. I have some pretty modest goals with it. There are a few things left to settle though. Do I use zombies? I have a thread started where I’m seeking advice and there are some great options there. One of the things that I do know is that I will be replacing the zombie hordes, large slow moving masses of zombies that can’t be destroyed but spawn zombies, with flying saucers. I have already purchased a cool little model kit for these.

So this one looks to be a lot of fun and no research. Oh, who am I kidding, I’ll probably find a way to do some research somehow.

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Make My Own Canoe!? Sureā€¦

When I made the decision to leave 6mm behind and try something different, my main motivation was creating something with personality. Individuals and places rather than troops and battlefields. One of my main inspirations has come from a poster on the Lead Adventures forum, Silent Invader. I have seen what he has created and painted and I’d be happy to accomplish half as much as he has. One of his blog posts shows how he created his small water craft by hand. Now I don’t have any need for a canoe as I only have 6 figures painted, but I thought “HOW FREAKIN’ COOL, wonder if I could do that?” So, here is the beginning of my attempt.

I don’t want to post another person’s pictures on my blog, so I will refer to the photos from Silent Invaders blog that can be found here.

The first thing I did was take a trip to the hardware store to buy some plumber’s epoxy. I have never used the stuff before, but hey it’s about time right. Don’t let my wife know, she might expect me to fix a sink or something eventually. It was about $7, so not to bad, but not exactly cheap. Then again, not as expensive as buying one.

Next was to make the basic shape out of some sort of card type material. One of my students (I’m a teacher) left some scraps of poster board in my room yesterday, so I had my material. I copied the picture of the cut-outs from Silent Invaders blog onto a word document and blew it up to as large as possible on one piece of paper. Then printed it out, cut out the shapes, drew them onto the poster board, and cut those out. The two sides of the canoe in SI’s picture are different sizes due to camera angle when the shot was taken. I used the smaller size for my model. I used scotch tape to keep the pieces together temporarily. Here is the result. I’ve also placed some bases in one picture to make sure it will hold my figures. I’m hoping for a four figure capacity, but more about that later.

It’s hard to get my head around the fact that a lot of this frame will be sanded away during the process. Once I had the initial shape ready, it was time to start applying the epoxy. I started in the bow and stern and let that dry for a few minutes. Then I the epoxy to the sides of one half, that way it allowed my splint in the middle to keep the canoe-y shape. After a few more minutes, I added the epoxy to the other half.

I was pretty happy with my creation at this point. Then I looked at the one I’m supposed to be emulating. I think I made a big mistake. My sides are far too wide an d a base no longer fits on the flat surface at the bottom of my boat. We’ll see how it turns out.

The boat will be given it’s final shape through a combination of sanding and adding greenstuff.

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Keeping Busy

I ordered a large shipment of toys long before Christmas, but the weather has conspired against me. I still wait for the new stuff to arrive. I have wiled away the days reading about the French and Indian War. I have ordered six books on the subject ranging from general history of the war to books on Rogers to a book on the Mohawk valley. I’ve been spoiled for choice and loving it.

I have been creating more tree stands, I have twenty some already but if you are going to game FIW, you are going to need a lot of trees. Here they are in a middle stage.

Inspired by the Silent Invader over on the Lead Adventures forum, I created some inconspicuous shock markers for the Sharp Practice rules. They are simply gravel from my driveway mounted on 30mm bases. A bit of basing materials and bob’s your uncle. I also painted up a left over AWI militia man to pose as a settler on the frontier. This is the first figure I have used a wash over the whole figure. I’m quite happy with the way things have turned out.

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Mohawks 1

I’ve been showing my progress on these guys for a few posts now.

Well, they’re finally finished and I’m damned happy with the results.

One of the toughest parts for me is picking out the right colors to use, not necessarily paint shades but general colors. I’m getting more comfortable picking them out, but a uniform is very easy to decided upon. It’s really the freedom to choose that I’m coming to grips with. In 6mm with militia and other non-uniform troops, I pick out a pattern when painting and then randomize them on the stands. I’m sure it’ll get easier.