Friday, December 30, 2016

Death in Vacuum

Grim Reaperbot
15 mm



Space travelers can be an oddly superstitious bunch, and lurid tales abound in ports across the galaxy about eerie and gruesome encounters out in "The Black".  One of the strangest, usually laughed off nervously by sensible folk, is of the Reaperbot... a metallic figure who appears out of nowhere to claim the lives of unwary spacers.  Nobody can claim they actually know someone who's seen it... but everyone knows the stories.

Miniature is Ion Age's "Grim Reaperbot", skulls are from 15mm.co.uk.

"You hear something?"

Thursday, December 01, 2016

Family Ties

High Class Doctor and his Eccentric Sister
15 mm

"You gave up everything you had to find me. You found me broken. It's hard for you. You gave up everything you had." 
"Mei-mei, everything I have is right here."



The children of a wealthy family on a comfortable world, he saved her from government brainwashing and now they hide among the outlaws and smugglers of the outer rim planets, where she turns out to have disturbingly good survival skills...

Figures are, once again, by Ground Zero Games.  Still a nice set, but some of the sculpting here was really frustrating.  Even in 15mm, you don't make a painter's life any easier when you take a character who looks like this:


and sculpt him like this...


Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Fly the Friendly Skies

Cutie-pie Mechanic and Cheerful Pilot
15 mm

"Everyone's got somebody.  Wash, tell me I'm pretty."
'"Were I unwed, I would take you in a manly fashion."
"'Cause I'm pretty?"
"'Cause you're pretty."




Another pair of Ground Zero Games' spaceship crew.  This time it's the perennially upbeat yet lovelorn ship's engineer, and the goofy plastic-dinosaur-playing pilot.  These are also really fine sculpts which I made look sort of like Smurfs.  But still enjoyable to paint with a few opportunities for teeny tiny freehand.  I don't actually yet own the Captain, First Mate, and Security figures, but I do have the Physician and His Weird Sister that I can have a go at next.

Monday, November 07, 2016

Galactic Warrior of Dundee

Angus McFife XIII
15 mm

Angus McFife XIII my name
Scion of mighty Dundee
Intergalactic great hero of steel
Ruler of the whole galaxy

Wielding this ancestral weapon
The Hammer of Glory its name
The Kingdom of Fife will forever proclaim




Angus McFife the Thirteenth, king of the Intergalactic Empire of Fife, is the hero of the ridiculous(ly awesome) concept album Space 1992: Rise Of The Chaos Wizards by power metal band Gloryhammer.  Armed with the Hammer of Glory ("powered by lasers entwined in a star") and aided by his allies the Hollywood Hootsman and the Knights of Crail, he battles the evil space wizard Zargothrax, who intends to destroy the universe.

If this all sounds incredibly cheesy, that's because it is...

Warriors of planet Earth, hear my raging cry
For mighty Dundee, the demons will die!

Angus McFife is a converted Prydain Retained Knight from The Ion Age.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

The Fat Controller

Drone and Controller
15 mm


The Controller roams wreckage-strewn battlefields with his motley collection of bots, looking for salvageable parts and technology to be repaired and sold on the interstellar black market.  While naturally legless and sessile, he has adapted a Taranis runner drone to give himself exceptional mobility and speed.


The bot and the Controller's legs are Taranis Runner Drones from The Ion Age, while the Controller himself is from 15mm.co.uk. I've only done these two figures, but as I acquire suitable robot figures I may expand the team. 

These guys actually got off to a bit of a rocky start when, right after I basecoated them, my youngest decided he was going to help paint them while I wasn't looking!  Welp!  Into the dip, and lesson learned...

Sunday, October 02, 2016

Birthday Monster

Lizardman Soldier
28 mm

You hear the door come crashing down
The birthday monsters are in town!

This is kind of a special project for me.  My 4 year old daughter thoughtfully selected this Reaper Bones mini for me for my birthday this year, and I wanted to paint it up as soon as I could to show my appreciation.  It's a good figure, a bit "flat" but still exhibiting a dynamic character.  The Bones plastic was even softer than I'd expected, but the hot water trick worked to straighten the spear and generally make him stand more upright.



I'll admit you can tell my skills have slipped in the last few years, but on the other hand, painting 15 mm has made me accustomed to using strong contrast, which I think suits this scaly guy.  The other figure she got me might have to wait a bit, I have some 15 mm projects I'm anxious to get going on once the back-to-school madness settles down.

Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Claw Patrol

Hell Divers theropod rider
15 mm






As intelligent and loyal as dogs, fast and immensely powerful; large predatory dinosaurs from the Chuhuac home world are used by some human allies as mounts for military expeditions.  Though vulnerable to weapons, their trainability and versatility make them ideal mounts for elite scouts in challenging environments.

Converted, as mentioned here, from a Schleich toy dinosaur and a Clear Horizon infantry figure.

Patrolling on a lush jungle world... beautiful, but hidden threats await.




Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Sneak peek (theropod rider)


As summer winds down, I'm finding a little more time to paint, and at the top of my queue is my dinosaur rider!  I'm still amazed at the detail on the Schleich models...

Also, I was recently surprised with a lovely birthday gift: a couple of Reaper Bones figures personally selected by my 4-year-old daughter.  That's never happened before!  She made good choices too: 77050 Lizardman Soldier, and 77092 High Elf Adventurer.  I don't paint much 28 mm any more but I'll have to have a go at one of those soon.

Monday, August 01, 2016

The flesh and the word

Courtesan and Preacher
15 mm

 "So, would you like to lecture me on the wickedness of my ways?"
 "I brought you some supper. But, if you'd *prefer* a lecture, I've a few very catchy ones prepped. Sin and hellfire. One has lepers."
 "I think I'll pass.  But thank you for this."





Two of Ground Zero Games' not-quite-Firefly crew figures.  These were challenging to paint, as the sculpting is very fine (though not quite to the extremes of Tom Meier's work).  I did not do the lady justice at all; her face was almost impossible to paint well, though I have seen others who pulled it off.  Her glamorous sari-like dress is very in character, I'll admit.  The preacher's humble attire and downcast face were easier to approach and I quite like the result.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Riders of the saurian age

Hell Divers theropod rider
15 mm


Anyone on the 15 mm sci-fi Facebook group has already seen this, but I just started a fun little project.  I adapted a Clear Horizons "Hell Diver" figure to be the rider and sculpted a saddle out of putty.  There could be various explanations for soldiers in the future riding dinosaurs, but I can think of at least one based on fluff I've written in the past...



I mentioned the high-quality Schleich toy dinosaur in a previous post but never had a good idea what to do with it.  With a bit of putty added to cover up the embossed text on the belly, I think it's at least as good as most dino sculpts intended for gaming.  As oddly good as Schleich's paint jobs are, for some reason the primed model really gets my creative juices flowing...

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Cowabunga!

The various tasks and leisures of summer have put a considerable dent in my painting progress, so I'm afraid I don't have anything of my own to show you.

But I do want to showcase this.  I didn't even know there were Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Clix figures, but the proprietor of Menace Miniatures really hit these out of the park:


Yeah, wow.  I always loved the old TMNT comics, and these really evoke the surprisingly gritty spirit of the Eastman and Laird originals.  There are a couple of other good pics on his blog so head over and check it out!

Saturday, July 02, 2016

Moon walkers

Spacesuited research team
15 mm



Wearing light-duty environmental suits for planetary surface exploration, these civilian scientists carry various sensor gear.  A semi-autonomous rover accompanies them with larger instruments and communications equipment.

Figures are Ground Zero Games  SG15-V10 and SG15-V17 (astronauts) and V15-69C (rover).


The rover.  It's intended to be a military sensor drone, but I think yellow suits it.


After the horrific events of November 22, 2048, the artifact must now be kept
in hard vacuum and studied only by personnel wearing fail-safe devices.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Some kind of mushroom...

Myconids
15 mm scale




Myconids are a peaceful, telepathic race of mushroom creatures who live in the D&D world's "Underdark" caverns.  These Khurasan figures could be peaceful Myconids wishing to be left in peace by more aggressive species... or menacing and harmful Cursed Myconids defending themselves with bursts of necrotic spores.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

The Sentinel

Ominous Xenoartifact
65 mm tall

I can never look now at the Milky Way without wondering from which of those banked clouds of stars the emissaries are coming. If you will pardon so commonplace a simile, we have set off the fire-alarm and have nothing to do but to wait. 

I do not think we will have to wait for long.

- Arthur C. Clarke "The Sentinel", 1951




A Fenris Games resin model.  It makes an impressive 15mm piece, or a merely disturbing 28mm one ;)

Addendum: a better idea of the scale here...

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Nerf Herders

Free Traders/Adventurers
15 mm



Myriad, overlapping, and sometimes contradictory commercial regulations can often make it difficult for interstellar traders to stay on the right side of the law.  Sometimes the best way to make an honest living is to just go with your own personal definition of "honest".  This human and his imposingly furry co-pilot do just that, trading in high-value commodities and frequently having some exciting and dangerous life experiences along the way.

... like raiding a heavily-guarded Cultural Collective data core.  "Never tell me the odds!"

Miniatures are from The Ion Age and a slightly converted 15mm.co.uk "Wildthingian".

Saturday, April 30, 2016

The Art of War

Leonardo da Vinci and his tank
15 mm

I stand alone
And gaze upon the battlefield
Wasteland
Is all that's left after the fight
And I'm searching a new way to defeat my enemy
Bloodshed
I've seen enough of death and pain
- Sabaton, "The Art of War"

In 1482, Leonardo da Vinci, already an accomplished artist, came under the retainer and patronage of Ludovico Sforza, the Duke of Milan.  Ludovico desired to make his city-state renowned for the arts and skilled crafts, as well as adorning his own court with elegance and splendour.  War never being far from his doorstep, he was also greatly interested in Leonardo's claims of expertise in military engineering.



One of Leonardo's military concepts was his "tank", a mobile wooden fortress bristling with cannons which could wheel across the battlefield immune to arquebus and pike.  Like many of his concepts it was likely never built, but one could imagine Ludovico, mindful of his surrounding enemies, financing the creation of a prototype.

Decorated with the family crest of the Sforzas.

Tank or no tank, in 1499 Ludovico was forced from power a French invasion of Milan, and Leonardo fled to Venice.  He spent the rest of his legendary career serving patrons such as the Cesare Borgia and Pope Leo X, before dying in France in 1519.


 As mentioned in my previous post, these lovely miniatures are from 15mm.co.uk.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Star Port Hustlers

Horansi spice broker
15 mm


Even in a galaxy full of amazing sights and experiences, most species which consume food appreciate a "taste of home".  If they desire an obscure, rare or merely delicious food supplement or flavouring, this merchant might just have some stashed in the slew of leather and fabric sachels slung about its body.  Horansi drive a notoriously hard bargain, but even if it doesn't have what you want, it can usually find it, for a price.

A slightly modified (tail and vertebral plates added) 15mm.co.uk figure.

Space port mechanic
15 mm


Eking out a living repairing shuttles, cargo lifters and speeders, this technical individual might get your ride back in the air just when you need it... or he might try to recharge your displacer coils with counterfeit fullerenes.  Buyer beware.  Another converted 15mm.co.uk figure.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Leonardo and his Tank

"You up for a little reconnaissance?"
"You mean where we all sculpt and paint and stuff?" 
"No, that was the Renaissance."
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer


I normally don't bother to just post stuff I bought these days but I have to share this one.  15mm.co.uk recently released miniatures of Leonardo da Vinci and his famous concept "tank", one of many inventions of his that was so far ahead of its time that it was, as far as we know, never built.  Leonardo was a military engineer for the Duke of Milan, producing other more practical deadly mechanisms and fortifications, as well as overseeing the Duke and Duchess' opulent wedding.


They're really nice models: well-sculpted crisp casts with lots of detail.  The tank is two resin halves with sixteen (!) metal cannon barrels, and you get two versions of Leo: mounted, and unmounted holding blueprints and a tiny model of the tank!  Too cool.  I can't wait to paint these up.

It's pretty big too.  With other figures for scale.