Monday, December 09, 2013

From the Desk: Weekend Roundup #43

Busy week. Longer post. Hopefully I don't bore you to death.

I would have gotten this post out last night but I got back late from an all day hobby class. There were 3 teachers for the class throughout the day. The first portion of the class was with Matt Gubser (who also happens to be a comedian). The class was quite good but it did very much underscore how much I suck at sculpting. However, as with all things, it just takes practice. I got a lot of little tips in this class and we actually did the first couple steps of sculpting a model from scratch. Here you can see my armature with a head started. Ironically my first pass at a face was doing ok, but then I fiddled too much and screwed it up. When I tried to start over I just made it even worse. Frustrating but I did get some good time in with the tools and enjoyed the session a lot. I definitely need to invest in some milliput.

Just a side note about going to this sculpting class is that having my assembly kit well stocked and compact was a huge bonus for this class. I had 95% of the things I needed for the sculpting class. The only missing things were plain steel wire and some petroleum jelly.

The second portion was run by David Diamondstone (Grandmaster winner of 2011 P3 Lock&Load) who covered Zenithal Highlighting and Two-Brush Blending. I've been doing both of these for a while, but it was quite useful to get to ask him questions and see his process. He also brought a bunch of his models along as references which was both enjoyable and humbling. His class, like the previous one was hands on. He demonstrated 2BB and then set us all lose to try it out. I spent the time working on Lord Chompy Bits. Despite the terrible lighting, I got some significant progress done on this large model. Perhaps the most enjoyable thing about this portion of the day was hearing everyone attending have that "Ah ha!" moment as they first saw David demonstrate 2BB and then practice it themselves. David did a great job of helping everyone out and did a bunch of demonstrations over and over next to each person so they could see the technique clearly. I'm a huge fan of 2BB in general so it was really fun to see and hear a pro painter teaching others and see those students really getting it.

The third portion was about Color Theory with Nick Gage. Another hands-on class, I have to admit that I found this one the most useful of all. Nick let us pick 3 colors from his random assortment of paints, then included pure white and pure black and proceeded to paint an old plastic Warhammer Fantasy orc archer. We picked day glow yellow, magenta, and an wyrm green. He proceeded to paint the orc with magenta skin and in less than 30 minutes had a very respectable color scheme covering 90% of the model. Then he gave us each an orc to paint and picked out our 3 colors to use, with white and black added. This orc pictured here is mine, painted in about an hour using Moldy Ochre, Ordic Olive, and Exile Blue (and white and black). It was a really interesting exercise to do it this way. I had to think about how to shift my colors around with the limited set so as to achieve the effects I wanted. Nick gave me a lot of good tips like using the blue by itself for the deepest shadings of the boots, and a stronger ochre color to bring warmth to the skin highlights. I really honestly found this to be a valuable exercise in color theory that will definitely help me in the future. I definitely recommend other folks try this as well, especially where you let someone else pick the colors for you.

The whole day was really enjoyable. At first I thought I was overzealous in my packing of all my paints, but it turned out to be very helpful since I got a bunch of painting done, it helped the color theory part, and I was able to share with the class organizer Michael. Most of all though, I really enjoyed hanging out with a bunch of folks dedicated to the hobby.

So what else happened this week? Well I got a bunch more blanks made for building Malifaux bases for my Neverborn crew. All in all I believe I made 6 50mm, 8 40mm, 10 30mm, and 3 extra 20mm for basing masters on two-tier bases. This was an important victory since it unblocks a key piece of starting my Lilith crew.

I also got 2 games of Malifaux in, which is a record for me. The first was Pandora vs Henry's Marcus crew where I nearly tabled him but lost sorely on VPs at something like 5 to 8. The second was Pandora vs Lance's Lynch crew where I myself got completely tabled but before losing Pandora as my last piece I pulled out a Hail Mary play and scored my second Scheme to win the game on VPs, 5 to 4. Just goes to show that table dominance doesn't mean victory in Malifaux.

And finally, I got a ton of progress on Hans this week. Really enjoying painting this model. I also got to bring it to the class and got some great ideas from Nick on how to work the remaining parts of the model color-wise to help tie everything together and keep the focus on the face area.

Whew! Busy week but very enjoyable to have done so many things. Hopefully this week I'll be a bit more on the ball in posting incrementally instead of a big post at the end of the week.

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