Monday, June 30, 2008

Lightbox Test

I'm experimenting with using the lightbox javascript for image display. I'll be updating this post as I continue to experiment.

Source for the lightbox javascript.


  1. Download the stuff from the above site
  2. Modify paths within files
  3. Upload files into my google pages (, since I can't add the files to this blog directly
  4. Add the 'rel' tag to image references... per the example below...
  5. Discover that my images are way too big and need to be cropped down for this to really be useful

Additional notes about using picasaweb to host images and how to embed them into sites was gathered from this blog. Basically to reference the images, there's a finite set of possible resolutions that can be referenced in the link, which are: 72, 144, 200, 320, 400, 512, 576, 640, 720, 800, 912, 1024, 1152, 1280, 1440, 1600.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Captain Rengrave

My final push to meet 350pts in a month isn't going so great. Here's Rengrave, finishing out the pirate half of the points. Overall a pretty mediocre paintjob, but I wasn't going for my best. After finishing it, I have mixed feelings about this model. It has marvelous details (coat, tears, barnacles, sword details, 4 pistols, etc), but the pose of the model is obnoxious. I would have preferred something a little more upright and menacing. Here he just looks like a sneaky pirate thief. In the 3 games I've played with him so far, he's always out in front, kicking ass and taking names. He deserves a pose that says to his opponent "Go ahead! I dare you! Shoot me!" Anyway, that aside, this model was more practice in using washes for me.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

First 1k

Last night was my first 1000pt game and it was awesome! I totally got smoted, but it was very entertaining and educational. I played against Jeff from my LGS.

Jeff: Cygnar - Darius, Haley, 2 Centurions, Thunderhead, Ironclad, Lancer, Sword Knights, Trenchers, Junior, GMCA, and Strangeways.
Me: Menoth - eFeora, Bart, Castigator, Revenger, Devout, Freebooter, Mariner, Daughters, Zealots, Aiyana&Holt, Rupert, Vilmon, 2 Seneschals, Eiryss, Chior, and Vassal.

We played the standard Cygnar league mission for this week so that Jeff could get league points.

I got smoted. Even though I was the "attacker", Jeff had me pinned down and slowly took me apart. Darius' feat also put a serious hurt on my day when he repaired everything. I also had a couple of key failed dice rolls (pushing the Seneschal into range to walk up and take out a Centurion for example, and then missing a chain attack slam on the T-head that would have slammed it into a building and undoubtedly destroyed it). Overall though it was a seriously fun game.

I should not have built my list specifically to go after the mission. Also, playing at the 1000pt level means the second caster can just be support. Going with Bart gave me some interesting options, but since I was going second, I simply wasn't able to properly leverage those options.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Showdown Painting Research

I've been cruising the Privateer forums lately looking for ideas on how to paint the Cryx models I'll be working on eventually. This post is a bunch of links of things I found interesting...

The glowing effect on this Pistol Wraith is very cool.

I love the runes on the tabbard of this Denegra.

The lava bases for these Witches are superboss. I'm totally going to try to make lava bases like these. Here's a link to a post where he explains how he made them (post #7).

The Brushthralls Ironthrall challenge for Revenant Crew conversions is excellent and gives me ideas of what to do for adding more Revenants to my unit.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

First Showdown Battle

Lance and I had our first Showdown battle of our 350pt lists!

Me: Witches, Skarlock, Rengrave, Revenants(7), Harrower
Lance: Old Witch, Berserker, Doomreavers, Manhunter, Yuri

Let me first say that when 8 weaponmaster advance deploy on you in a 350pt game, it's rather intimidating. However, my cantankerous band of Cryxians was up to the chore. The Revenants did alot of shooting, and then alot of dying, and then alot of coming back to (un)life, but overall did a good job of blocking and clearing out the doomreavers. Then they got a charge on the Berserker and their deathstrokes took it out. The Harrower took out the Manhunter and Yuri (with some assistance from the Witch's Imprison to space them out), which gave it soul tokens to experiment with it's gun later on. The Witches were excellent support in this game, but Rengrave stole the show, pressing 3 Doomreavers into the service of his Revenant Crew. In the end, the Old Witch got unlucky with an attempt to assassinate one of the Witches, and then that Witch turned around and stabbed the old bag. I have to say, being on the delivery end of Cryx was very entertaining.

One thing is for sure, with Rengrave on the table, I need to make up some more Revenant models to have on hand for when he presses dudes into service.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

From the Painting Desk: Showdown Update on Witches

Just a quick update while I have a few minutes. The Witches are almost done now (except for Egregore which is not even assembled). I decided to go fully NMM with them, and so far the results are not terrible. Actually, I'm quite happy with the look myself. They aren't top notch quality for me, but overall this whole experimenting with washes thing is going great. A major departure here for me was using white primer for them to make the armor washing easier to get rolling.

As for the Painting Showdown status, model-wise I'm doing pretty well, but work-wise, I still feel behind. Even if I finish painting the witches tonight, I'll still have a ways to go. I added a Showdown Status listing to this page to keep track of where I'm at easier. It's going to be pretty rough getting the remaining 4 models all done in 12 more days. Not to mention that I've got a 1000pt game on Monday that I need to prep for still. I will say though, the showdown is keeping me very focused on painting and getting stuff done. Even though I'm doing alot of experimenting, it's more focused on speed painting techniques, so I'm still cranking through pretty fast.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Revenant Crew

And now... undead pirates! I finished these guys yesterday morning, but with Father's day going on, I didn't get a chance to post sooner. These were a blast to paint. They represent a significant departure from my standard painting techniques. I used alot of washes, and some pseudo-NMM techniques. These were relatively speed painted. I've found that using washes is not only a very quick technique, but coupled with 2-brush-blending can produce pretty decent results with alot less effort. I'm dedicated to continuing to use these techniques for the rest of the Cryx models that I plan on painting.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Showdown Woes

Well, I didn't finish the Revenant Crew on the weekend. I still have 2 left. I'll definately finish them before this coming weekend, but I still feel behind schedule. It's going to be rough getting 350pts fully painted within a month. I'm not giving up though. If I can finish the Revenants and Rengrave by the end of the weekend then I'll be about halfway done (model-wise) and will feel more on track. Here's some planning updates in the meantime:

I've primed the Witches in white! *GASP* I labored over this for the last few days and finally decided to just try it out. I'm heavily experimenting anyway with these Cryx models so why not do a little more experimentation. The white base will make painting healthy looking skintones easier probably. All things considered, they should go pretty fast. I haven't used white primer in a while, so this will be a good re-learning experience.

I started assembling the Harrower. This thing is crazy. 13 pieces, and with it's big long spidery legs, it's going to be a real challenge to get on a base. I need to just keep tinkering with it over the next week. I'll inevitably end up painting it in pieces.

The Egregore is going to be a serious experiment for me. I'm going to the game store today to pick up some rare earth magnets and I'm going to make an honest attempt at making it float. I'll post more about that later once I get a prototype put together.

Well, that's it for this morning. Hopefully this will be a productive week for painting and I can get back to something that feels "on schedule" for being done by the end of the month. The great thing is, I'm already thinking about the next round of painting and what sort of models I want.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

From the Painting Desk: Showdown Update on Pirates

Well, I'm over halfway through the Revenant Crew now. 3 are complete and the other three have metals and flesh all done. Below is a terrible pic, but it gives a rough idea. The painting style on these is a noticable departure from my normal style. I'm experimenting alot more with washes and alternate color schemes when blending. I've also tried to use inks a bit more here as well.

I'm hoping that if I can get the Revenants done tomorrow, I'll be on a good pace to finish all 350 points of models before the end of the month without too much trouble. I even squeezed in a game last night against Lance!

Monday, June 02, 2008

And now for something new... The Painting Desk

The following are a pair of pictures of my test model. I've had this model for a while and it has many many layers of paint on it at this point. I use it for experimenting with new color combiations and painting techniques. Typically ones that I'm not willing to throw on a new model. Eventually I'll need a new test model, but this one has proved sufficient up till now.

Today's experiment was with oxidized/rusted metals. I tested these out on the sword blades. The top one follows fairly closely a tutorial from the Brushtralls site on NMM oxidized bronze. The lower one is just a concoction of my own creation. I'm thinking of using these techniques for the metals on my Cryx models. For my own reference, here are the two techniques:

Top blade: base Menoth White Highlight, thick wash Rucksack Tan, thin wash Sanguine Base, thin wash Battle Dress Green, very thin wash Umbral Umber, thin wash Arcane Blue (in selected places)

Bottom blade: base coat Cold Steel, wash Bloodstone, thin wash Vallejo Smoke, stipple with Khador Red Highlight, edging/blending Pig Iron

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Studio Showdown, Local Style

Inspired by the Studio Showdown articles in issues 17 and 18 of No Quarter, I've decided to follow suit and try to paint 1000 points of Cryx over the next 4 months. Given my life schedule (and getting sick with the flu today) this is going to be a tall order. However, I've convinced a couple buddies to join me in the showdown for moral support.

For my own showdown, I've got a couple tweaks to the parameters:
* First, all models are to be selected based on being interested in painting them. This is not about fielding a kick-ass rules-based army. It's about fielding a kick-ass looking army. Left to my own devices I'd keep working on pirates and protectorate due to my completionist mentality. However there are some majestic Cryx models that I'd love to paint, so this gives me the perfect excuse to do so. It may not end up being an effective force, but I'll have a great time painting it.
* Second, all models within the faction. No mercs to fill out the force.

As for a schedule, here's the plan:
June: base 350pts, 1 caster
July: additional 150pts, plus 1 more caster
August: additional 250pts, plus 1 epic caster
Sept: additional 250pts, plus 1 more epic caster

For my first 350pts, I've selected the Witch Coven (85pts), Capt Rengrave (28pts), 6 Revenant Crew (77pts), a Skarlock (16pts), and a Harrower (125pts). This gives me 331pts which technically leaves enough room for a necrotech and 2 scrap thralls, but I've left them off because I'm not particulary keen on painting them and will probably use the 19pts for something else in the next round.

Well, time to get crackin here. I've got alot of painting to get done!

Eiryss (alternative sculpt)

Fresh on the heels of Kubla, here's Eiryss, in all her alt sculpt glory. There are 3 key things here that I tried out that I had not done before:
1) The cloak (although hard to tell in the photo) was a big experiment for me. I tried out a technique of using a warm red tone on the upper highlights, and deep blue tones for the shading. The purple made this an easier exercise, but the effect was rather intriguing. It gives the cloak a strange sort of color effect that I'm still not sure how to characterize, but I do like it. The cloak has a much more dynamic color to it as a result.
2) The blade got a litle extra attention. I used some blue highlights along with working the metals in my normal way, thus creating more of a hybrid between metal and NMM effect. Not particularly good, but an interesting experiment none-the-less.
3) The mushrooms were just a random experiment. I'd seen them on bases before and decided to give them a try here. They turned out ok for my first try. I may have to search around for a tutorial to see if I can gain any additional tips.
Overall, a fairly pleasurable model to work on. The face came out unusually well for my skills which I am stoked about.