“Plodding Along” (Weeks 42 & 43)

Well as you may have noticed there was no post last week, but this doesn’t mean I haven’t been painting, because I have. Now I have a new project on the cards that I hope to be starting next month (more on that then), but for now I hope to get finished one of my other long running (too long I might say) sets of figures, so this month is now designated “Very British Civil War” month. To this end I have pulled out all the remaining unpainted figures (four boxes worth), cleaned up the sculpts, added the odd bit of greenstuff here and there, based them all up and undercoated the lot. Now I started with the Policemen I had left first so…

Box 8– (3x 28mm Police Cavalry)

Box 12 – (4x Policemen with machine guns)

Now you might have noticed that there is also a dog in the photo’s but he may or may not get done depended on time, but anyway I’ll just stick with the figures for the minute. So as stated above first job was to clean up the sculpts with a shape knife and file, the horses being particularly bad here. Next I had to make up some bases for the horses so taking the template I have made from two “tuppences” taped together I marked out three “lozenge” shapes onto card and after cutting them out and adding another smaller layer of card on top of this to add a little height, I glued the horses to the new bases, the standing chaps were simply glued to coins with a card spacer, before covering all the bases in “Tetrion” all-purpose filler. After this the mounted Policemen were sat upon the horses (but not glued) and all the figures went out for their coating of matt black.

So working from this black undercoat the four standing “coppers” were first dry-brushed with royal blue before I painted in the wooden stocks of their guns with chocolate brown and butternut, after this I added the metallic parts of the guns along with the buttons and badges in chainmail. Flesh was next I took my flesh tone seven and mixed it with some European flesh and this formed the undercoat, then after their eyes were added pale flesh was mixed with more European flesh for the highlights. Then this group was given chocolate brown hair highlighted with chestnut. Next after I had touched up the boots and belts in black these were highlighted with dark grey and lastly I added their warrant “cuffs” in black and white. Done, now I can turn to the Cavalry.

The Bobbies riding the horses were removed from their mounts and had their legs “clipped” with small pegs (the type you hang Christmas cards with) to keep them upright while I paint them. They were of course painted exactly the same as the above with the addition of their ammunition belts that two of the figures are wearing were added and these were highlighted with some dark grey.

The horses, well rather than just do another group of brown or chestnut one I decided to add a little variation by doing a white, grey and black version, so one I left black and then dry-brushed this in a dark grey/ black mix, which then formed the undercoat on the second, which was then dry-brushed with a dark grey/ lots of white mix, this (you guessed it) them formed the undercoat for the white one. A dry-brushing of white with a tiny bit of grey was applied over this, but I decided it still wasn’t white enough, so a final light dry-brush of white was then put over the top of this. However I then decided that I wasn’t keen on the grey horse so after looking up pictures of “dapple grey” horses I took some white paint and dabbed this on with a sponge over the main body of the horse, then mixing up some mid-grey (dark grey and white), dotted and splodged this over this, more dark grey was blended down it’s legs till I was reasonably happy with the result.

The reins and saddles came next these were painted with a mix of chocolate brown and black. Then I added a couple of forehead “blazes” and socks in either coffee highlighted with cream or black and then did the blankets under their saddles in dark grey highlighted with light grey, I also added a dark red stripe to them (I also did the bed rolls behind the officers like this without the stripe. The eyes and hooves were then added in black and the saddles themselves were painted in a mix of chocolate brown and black and the stirrup straps down the figures legs were added in this too. The officers were glued into place and I touched up any missing paint from their boots with the black, along with the bags at the front of the saddles before they were highlighted with dark grey. Chainmail was then used on the stirrups and bridles, and they were all ready for a coat of Quickshade.

And that is where I’m up to with these chaps. I’ll start of the civilians next, and probably paint the bases on them all at the same time, and do one or two complete group pictures at the end.

Till next time, Cheers Roger.

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Posted in A very British civil war | Tagged | 12 Comments

“I’m so money supermarket!!”

Right well before I start this week I guess I should clarify the title of this post for any readers outside of the UK, we currently have an advert running on television for a “comparison website”, and well…it’s probably easier if you just click play on the YouTube video at the bottom of the post

Anyway turning back to the figures, and well it was a close run thing, but I managed to get my two submissions for this years “Forgotten Heroes” challenge finished before the end of the month (and a day earlier than last year!). as I hope you are aware, in my last post I stated that the sculpting was now all finished and it was time to add a little colour into the lives of my two “Eternians” so after Jitsu had been “based up” with some filler and “cat litter” boulders, both figures were given a spray coat of matt black, and it was…. Painting time!

I began this as usual by touching up any areas on both figures that the black spray had missed, then Jitsu’s sword was dry-brushed with chain-mail. Then turning to his breastplate this was undercoated in dark red before I added highlights in bright red. I decided that I couldn’t live with the bright orange/red furry undies that the toy wears so undercoated these in dark grey and highlighted them in light grey instead and while I had them out I painted the fur tops of his boots in the same (The toy’s boots have “gold” fur tops? I nearly went for black but as his belt and boots are black I thought the contrast would be better in grey. Flesh came next, to get the shade I was after I began by mixing a little “Flesh tone 7” (This is quite a dark “Mexican” brownish shade), with a tiny amount of chocolate brown (to darken it slightly further) and once this was dry and his eyes had been added in white and black, I mixed up some more flesh tone 7 this time with some khaki to get a slightly oriental tome. This was then used to highlight all the muscles a skin. All the “gold bits” came next, so his “hand”, breastplate accoutrement’s, belt buckle and sword hilt were all painted shinning gold, before being highlighted in pale gold. The rest of his belt, left arm strapping, his boots and his hair and beard were then all touched up again in black before all but his hair and beard were highlighted in dark grey (a mixture of dark grey and black, being used on his hairy bits). The “jewels” on his breast plate and belt buckle were then added using metallic red, and the ones across the knuckles of his “big hand” were done in turquoise, and low and behold he was just about painted.

Beast-man, was begun by painting his whole body and head in orange, now I know I’ve said this on numerous occasions now, but why did I go with a black undercoat!! Three coats of orange later and he was reasonably evenly coated. I could now highlight this with a mixture of orange and coffee. Then I added his face and ears (the cartoon and a later version of the toy had pale ears as well as face, and as I liked this, I decided to do mine this way) so coffee was used for these areas, before adding his eyes and mouth in black and white. The darker patches under his eyes I did in a mixture of porcelain blue and royal blue to get the right shade. Turning to his breastplate “thingy” and arm plates I began by painting in dark red, then highlighted with pink burgundy and then again with bright red. I then added the cross in the middle of his breastplate in porcelain blue with a highlight of pale blue, and after this I lightly dry-brushed the tips of the spikes around his neck and on his upper arm plates with a touch of chainmail. Now his furry underpants should have been blue (well they are on the toy and cartoon), but once again I decided to stray slightly from “cannon” and after giving then a dark grey undercoat, I dry-brushed them in blue grey, that are still slightly blue’ish but at least not that awful plastic blue (really the only time I ever recall seeing this colour is on toy’s from my childhood!). That only really left his belt and electro-whip to do, so rather than paint his whole belt in bronze highlighted with a little copper, I just did the two plates on the front in this colour, deciding instead to colour the belt itself in chocolate brown with a leather brown highlight, this was also used on the strapping around his wrists and around his upper arms, holding the plates in place. His whip was left black (like the toy) but I did highlight it with some dark grey.

Both figures were then treated to coat of “quickshade” strong tone, and once this was dry their bases were first painted chocolate brown before successive dry-brushes of khaki and coffee were applied. Then areas were picked out scenic green and then these areas were flocked using “Javis” Summer Mix static hairy grass. A final spray coat of matt varnish sealed the deal.

So that’s it I made it with just a day to go, and though I would never dare to profess to being anywhere near as productive as some of the other participants in this year’s challenge all in all I’m pretty happy with what I’ve achieved, I began on fairly safe ground to be honest as having already turned out ten of these “Masters of the Universe” figures before I was reasonably confident I could produce something that should be at least recognizable as “He-man” toy proxies (though you never know when one of these little bu**ers is going to get away from you!). I was a little unsure about the pose of the dolly I had chosen for my “Jitsu” figure, but now he’s finished I think it works, it’s a little sad to say that when I first ordered these “Dollies” from “Bronze Age Miniatures” a couple of years back now I went through the pictures on the web-site and was able to name what character each pose would end up being before I ordered them. The slightly sad thing is however I have three human characters (and three cats but that’s beside the point) I still really want to produce but I only have two dollies left (one I only recently decided I wanted). Sadly the dollies are no longer on the web-site, so I’m not sure they are still available, a bridge I will have to cross at some point.

Anyway this is my last “Forgotten Heroes” post this year, so it just remains for me to say a huge thank you to all the people who have taken part, producing figures of such incredible high skill and imagination that you have exceeded all my expectations, and for everyone who has taken the time to comment either on the “Forgotten Heroes” site or on people own blogs. Thank you to all of you for making this year’s challenge so successful, and be sure to read Jez’s “end of term” round up on the FH site at the start of next month. I’ll leave you with a couple of group shots of all my “Masters of the Universe” figures to date.

Till next time, excelsior!! & cheers Roger.

Posted in 28mm fantasy, fantasy, Foprgotten Heroes, Masters of the Universe, Superheroes | Tagged , , , , | 18 Comments

“Let’s have a Big hand for Jitsu!”

Final stages of the sculpting of Jitsu were completed this week (well the start of it), so just a quick update to show where I’m up to as of now…

Sunday, Well I thought it was about time Jitsu got some hair so I began this by mixing two tiny balls of putty and added a couple of ears to the sides of his head, yes for some reason the dollies from “Bronze Age Miniatures” come without ears! Why I don’t know it would be so much easier to file these away if you were going to add a helmet than having to add them, but anyway “rant” over. Once these were on I then mixed up a small sausage of putty and attached this under his nose, then teased this around to his chin and added hair with my small knife, it is a bit bushier than the original but I can live with it. Next his hair was added using a blob of putty on top of his head and pushed into shape, being careful not to damage his new ears. Lastly today I added a bit more putty to the top of his right arm and increased the size of his bicep there, I’ll add his trademark “golden Hand” next.

Monday, and I started work on Jitsu’s right hand (the big one), before I started adding putty to it though I began by slicing off his thumb and then taking the pliers to the hand itself flattened out the fingers that were curled ready to take a weapon of your choice. This left the hand in a bit of a mess, but this of course didn’t matter as I was going to cover the whole thing in greenstuff anyway. That’s what I did next, mixing up a small amount I added a blob first to the back of his hand and then more again to the front, these were then smoothed together, and then after much “faffing” with various tools and knives I eventually worked it into a hand shape, sorry this description isn’t more specific but I really just messed about with it till I was reasonably happy with the shape. I then added some ridges across both sides of the fingers on the joints and after adding some dimples across the knuckles popped in some small balls of putty that were then flattened slightly on the top for a bit of detail. I’ll add the flared wrist piece tomorrow. Also today I took the samurai sword that I had cut off of the “Copplestone Babe” who became my “Harley Quin” last “Zomtober” and carefully drilling the back end of the blade inserted a tiny piece of florists wire ready to glue and putty into his left hand.

Tuesday and end was definitely in sight now, so I began by running a couple of blobs of putty down the front and back of Jitsu’s wrist and then smoothed these out and around his wrist, I then took my flat ended colour shaper and carefully pushed a ridge around the bottom of this “cuff” just above his elbow, this was then tidied up using the edge of my small knife as a straight edge. Next I added a small amount of putty to the “wire” handle of the sword and then carefully rolled this on the edge of my board trimming off any excess until I was happy with the size and shape. This was then pushed and glued into his left hand. Now comments had been made about the thinness of his legs, but I decided that I liked the smallness of them as they referenced back to the toys of the eighties as they too had legs that were a little small in comparison this the arms of the figures. So with that decision made Jitsu was also just about done.

Well that just leaves Jitsu’s base to be done and then I can get underway with the painting, on the home straight now, I’ll post up the finished figures once they are complete.

So till them Excelsior, and cheers Roger.

Posted in 28mm fantasy, fantasy, Foprgotten Heroes, Masters of the Universe, Superheroes | Tagged , , , , | 11 Comments

“Henchmen ‘R’ Us”

Well the best laid plans as they say, I had hoped to have all the sculpting finished by this weekend especially as Beast-man was pretty much there last weekend. however Jitsu has proven to be more work than I originally anticipated, not really difficult (though a couple of bits were a pain to get right!), but just more stages to his construction than I’d first thought, as fear of “mucking up” the bit I’d just done prevented me from moving on to the next stage till the putty was good and dry (the next day). Still this is where I’m up to now and what I completed each day.

Sunday, Time to add the base for Jitsu’s breastplate and back-plate, this basically meant I needed to smear putty all over his back and chest and then smooth it out as best I could ready for me to add the detail to it tomorrow (hopefully). I made it a bit thicker around the back, as I wanted to add a bit more girth to the figure, the front I made as thin as I dared, as I didn’t want to bury his arm to much where it crosses his body. I may have to build it up a bit later (we’ll see). Turning to Beast –man, and he seems to be progressing nicely (famous last words, watch him turn to “you know what” now!), I decided to add the metal plates to his upper arms today, so I began by rolling out a thin “thread” of putty and ran this around his arms at bicep level, then this was smoothed out a bit before I added two small balls of putty, that were then smoothed and teased into curved oval shapes on the outsides of his upper arms. Finally tiny conical sausages were stuck into ”dimples” I had pushed into the plates with a ballpoint refill tip, and then smoothed and blended to shape as the two spikes each plate sports.

Monday, when I started these two figures I thought Beast-man was going to the awkward one and Jitsu more of a “park-walk”. It now appears that opposite might be true, as though there have been a fair amount of fiddley bits on Beast-man I looked at the detailing in Jitsu’s breast-plate today and nearly sat and wept! I don’t think I’m going to able to add all of the swirls and crosses that the original sports (especially with his flipping arm in the way! Why did I pick this dolly!!!). Anyway I thought sitting here isn’t going to help, so out came the putty and a small amount was mixed up, I began by adding a sausage around his neck like a scarf, and this was then flattened out form the neck of the breast plate and line running down the front, I then pushed small dimples into this ready for me to add the red “jewels?” around this, the original has eight at the front and five round the back, but I settled for six round the front and three at the back, these were just tiny (and I mean tiny) balls of putty pushed into the dimples with a flat ended cocktail stick. I decided rather than risk damaging this I’d leave it there till tomorrow, so instead turned my attention to “Beasty”. Two small sausages of putty were again rolled out and these were then pushed onto the backs of his forearms, then they were smoothed out to the sides forming a small ridge in the centre and rising towards his elbow. Fur was then tapped into these with my small knife and his hairy arms were complete. This just leaves his “electro-whip” to add and he’ll be finished, but I think I might base him up before I add this.

Tuesday, and as I mentioned might happen last week I’ve now decided that the bases on my two He-man figures are just too thick, so I began today by cracking both of them off of the “tuppences” they are mounted on and cutting away a lot of the cardboard “spacers” I’d glued between the figures bases and the coins, they were then glued back in place onto the coins. Then I cut a length of my florists wire, and fed it into Beast-man’s left hand to form the “cord” of his Electro-whip”(interestingly when you look up pictures of Beast-man on the net the vast majority of then have him as left handed, though the original toy was right handed), it was then measured across to his right raised hand and a small amount of extra was added (to make the “droop”) before the bend was put in around his hand and down to the floor. Again I added extra, but didn’t glue it in place yet. So next job was to finish the base on the figure, so taking some “Tetrion” filler I covered the base hiding the now decimated base, and added a couple of bits of “clean” cat litter as rocks. Once dry I was able to curl the end of the wire “cord” so as it appeared to be lying on the floor. Then the wire was glued into both of his hands and again where it touched the floor. Sadly I did nothing more to Jitsu.

Wednesday, I was able to finish Beast-man today (Hooray!), I just had to add the handle of his Electro-whip, and this was just a tiny blob of putty popped into his hand and smoothed into a handle shape (technical huh!), then I added another smaller blob on the outside of his hand and smoothed this into the joint between handled a whip-cord, finally I added a thin sausage around his fingers as a guard (the toy has this to hold it to his hand), and he’s ready for painting. He will however have to wait until Jitsu is ready to join him, and I made a bit more progress on him too today. I began by adding some more detail to his breast plate, then decided that I would have to add to his left arm as it was in danger of disappearing into his breastplate, so balls of putty were added to his shoulder and upper arm and these were shaped into muscles, I might add some form of wrist gauntlet to his lower arm, and increase the size of his upper arm on the right side too. Lastly today I ran two thin sausages around his shoulders to form the cuffs on his breastplate, and these were blended into the main body of this. At least I seem to be getting somewhere with him now. (Sorry forgot to take a photo of this but you can see the results in the one below).

Friday, and work continued on Jitsu, this time I turned to the back of his armour, and added a couple of curved lines running down from the armoured neck down and around the sides, then taking two tiny sausages of putty added two small crescent shaped pieces in each top corner. These then had tiny balls of putty added to then to form some more “jewels”. Though not as intricate as the toy figures armour, I hope this gives a flavor of the original. Next turning him over I added a long wrist gauntlet over his left lower arm, though this is not present on the original figure I like the look of it and adds a little heft to his arm, I have decided that I will have to add a bit more muscle to his right bicep, as this figure seems a little “skinny” compared to some of the others.

So I’m not quite over the finishing line yet, still a couple of days of sculpting left before I get on to the painting, but I am still pretty much on course for getting these finished by the end of the month.

I’m also happy to report, that we have another new participant! So it’s my pleasure to welcome “Wampley”, check out his blog here…

http://wampleyscastle.blogspot.com.es/

Till next week Excelsior! Roger.

Posted in 28mm fantasy, fantasy, Foprgotten Heroes, Masters of the Universe, Superheroes | Tagged , , , , | 9 Comments