Saturday, April 29, 2017

Diorama: Base

Finished the gold bits on the throne and glued it in place today.

Next will be cleaning up the black border a bit and hitting the thing with some sealer. Then, placing the heads.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Diorama: Throne

Finished up the stone work on the throne today. The lions and the circle on the back will be gold. The spot in the middle of the circle will be a gem of some sort. I'm thinking either I"ll wait until I have some other stuff together and see what color would work, or blue.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Throne: Marbling, Continued

Finished the marbling today and started with the speckling. After the speckling, it'll be the glaze with the base color and then some lining. I will be really, really happy when this part is done.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Throne: Base coat and marbling

Airbrushed the base coat on the throne to start. Had to go to my backup airbrush. The airbrush I've been using definitely has some kind of problem.

After that, I started on the marbling. I'd say I'm about half done.

I'm a little disappointed with the quality of the cast of that throne. Lots of surface flaws. I'm finding more to clean up as I go.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Barbarian: Sleeve

I spray primed the throne today, which was taking a bit of a risk. My luck with spray primer is mixed. It seems to have made a smooth primer coat today, but after a couple hours it still felt a smidge tacky, so I'm leaving it for a good 24 hours before continuing.

Instead, tonight I went back to the barbarian. It's been a while for this guy! I continued working on his sleeve, adding some highlighting and starting the rings. Doing those rings were exactly as much of a pain as I thought they'd be. :p I was also hoping they'd stand out a bit more from the leather. Probably when I get some shading and highlights on them, it'll help.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Throne: Sanding, gluing, gap filling

I've started putting together the throne for the diorama. Yesterday I sanded some of the edges of the pieces - the bottom, and the sides of the back where there were some flaws from the casting. Then I glued it together.

Tonight I did the gap filling. Tomorrow I'll prime it, which will reveal where along the gap filling I need to clean up the edges of the putty. There's always spots that aren't integrated as smoothly as I thought.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Base: Speckling, Throne

I finished the stone effect on the base. Happily, the speckling didn't take nearly as long as I expected. I think it was 2 - 3 hours. As expected, applying the glaze after was maybe 15 minutes. I'm really quite happy with the end result.

So, moving on. Next will be putting together the throne and painting it. I set the pieces together to see what the fit was like and what cleaning and filling would be needed.

That looks like a lot of filling - the joins where the back and bottom meet, as well as that weird straight groove flaw in the back. Except, someone is going to be sitting on the throne, which means part of this may be hidden. Let's see how much.

Looks like that bit on the back will be hidden, but not so much the join between the back and bottom. I'll still have some filling to do. However, first I noticed this:

The back piece was warped, meaning it wouldn't sit flat against the back wall like I want. Resin can be reshaped somewhat if it's heated, though, so I put the piece in very hot water for a few minutes, then put it under weights to try to flatten it. It definitely helped. I'm letting it sit without weight for a day or so to see if it re-bends or if it holds straight. If it re-bends, I'll do the same treatment again until the straightening takes.

I also noticed that the bottom piece of the throne is canted slightly - rather than the sides going up square, they're at a slight angle. I don't think it will show once everything is in place, so I'm not going to try to fix it. I'm not sure I could fix it without damaging the thing anyway.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Base: Marbling

I got the streaks for the stone texture on the floor and steps of my base. This probably took somewhere around 6 six hours.

Now I need to go back and do the stippling, which will probably take a similar amount of time. Maybe (hopefully) a bit less. After that will be a light glaze with the base color, which should be fast. And then after that, I'll probably put a coat of sealer on it.

Then I'll move on to cleaning up and preparing the throne, and I'll have to decide if I want to do it in the same stone or something different.

Friday, April 14, 2017


I did the various base coats on the diorama base today. Here it is, masked off for the first application of color, which is black that went on to the back, bottom, and edges.

After I airbrushed everything, I touched up some edges by hand. There were a few spots where a color got where it wasn't supposed to be, even with the masking, and some places where the masking left unpainted spots. Here's the end result.

I'm quite pleased. Next will be doing the detail work on the floor and steps.

While I had the airbrush going, I also base coated the barbarian's base.

It still needs shading and highlights, and some brown on the areas that are meant to be earth rather than rock.

Thursday, April 13, 2017


I got back to the barbarian today, and worked on the armor sleeve. I'm trying out a texture technique on the leather. The strap is pretty much finished, and I'm happy with the results. The sleeve is only partly done and still needs a fair bit of work.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Diorama: More Base, More Weapons

More diorama work today. I started by trying out the airbrush for the back wall. This is the other side of my test piece.

I had a lot of trouble with my airbrush today. The base color I was using was too thick, I think, to go through it well. When I finally got it unclogged, it still wasn't working great. But I went back with thinner paint, and got it going well enough. I'm probably going to try using the airbrush for at least base coating the whole thing, and probably the faded out color on the back wall as well. I think I'll use a lighter color for that, though. I like the fade out, but what I've got there is a bit too much.

Then I went on to the weapons. I removed the monster hand from the club and started painting the swords.

I also did some prep work on my actual base. I put in the grooves (fewer of them than on the test piece) and wet the piece down to raise the grain. I'll sand it back down smooth, and then when I put the water-based paint on it It shouldn't raise the grain again, or at least not much. I did learn an important lesson from this: Wetting the wood swells the fibers, so I should have done that before putting in the grooves. I had to re-do the grooves after wetting the wood down, because the swelling of the fibers meant the original grooves were lost. Lesson for next time.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Diorama: Base, Weapons

I started by painting one of my plasticard swords today. It's a rough job, as I decided part way through that it just wasn't working. The gold isn't terrible, and that gives me hope that with enough time and practice I could get it. Start with a sword that's less chunky, for one thing...that looks kinda like  a Fisher Price starter blade in shape.

But, the cock is ticking, and I don't think I have that kind of time. So I went back through my Bones collection and found these weapons:

I could put the sword with the Tyranid sword, or maybe just put the club up across the top by itself. I'm going to work with these a while and see.

Then I went on to texturing the base. I got myself a sample image to work from and then tried to replicate it.The blocks are all variations. They all have the same lighter streaks, The leftmost has dark blue speckles in the streaks and brown speckles in the base color. The next to the right has just bleu speckles. The next to the right has no speckles. Each of those tiles has a heavy glaze of the base color on the left half. The rightmost til has both black and blue speckles again, and a lighter glaze on the left side.

I'm pretty happy with the results. At least one of these will work for me, I just have to decide what look I like best.

I had a little time left so I went on to painting the back. Base coat of beige, then fading to the darker orange. I futzed with it for a while...the final would need to be smoother. Tomorrow I might try with the airbrush to see if I can get a smoother gradient. I also tried putting a couple of cracks in it. Not awesome, but promising. Overall I'm pretty happy with it all.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Barbarian: Necklace, Bracer

Got back to the barbarian today. I might push to finish this guy up, we'll see. I did the details of his necklace today, and put a base coat on that armored sleeve. I'm going to have to go back and do the metal rings separately...that's going to be a lot of work. I'm also not sure I love the reddish brown with the yellower brown of his hair, but I'm going to press forward. Once there's shading on it, and the metal rings, it might be different.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Diorama: Base

I got in to the diorama's base today. I wanted to figure out how to put some grooves in the base to look like stone blocks, and how to put some chips and irregularities into the edges. For the grooves, I used a dead ball point pen. It made a line by compressing the fibers without cutting them, so it didn't leave behind messy bits. (Also learned that running a dead pen over wood really hard will apparently get it working again. Go figure.)

The breaks in the edge I did with a file, then used to sandpaper to soften the edges. Over all, I'm pretty happy with the physical texture. The paint still needs work. I want to put in some speckling and color variation, for starters. The paint lines also need some cleaning up, which I may or may not do since this is a practice piece.