Monday, March 27, 2023

Méliès' 'A Trip to the Moon'

Sarah and I were fortunate enough to visit Lyon, France this past autumn, and as a part of our wanderings, we visited the Lumiere Museum, which showcases the art, craft and process of early film making and photography. 

One of the films referenced in the museum was George Méliès' 1902 adventure, 'A Trip to the Moon' - the first sci-fi film ever created. 

I loved 'A Trip to the Moon' as a kid as it seemed so whimsical and weird. As it was inspired by Jules Verne's 'From the Earth to the Moon', Méliès' work was the start of my love of pulp science fiction which moved on to 'War of the Worlds' and 'John Carter of Mars' and of course, 'Star Wars'. 

Anyway, on Cults3D I found this wonderful 3d design by Printorama3d of the iconic image of the Moon's face with the space bullet in its eye. I thought it would be a great excuse for me to drag out my monochrome paints to try to give it a greyscale treatment.

As with my old 'Great War in Greyscale' project, I tried to incorporate both warm and cool grey tones to differentiate the face, the surrounding moon, and the crashed spacecraft. Thankfully, I keep an old Moleskin notebook that has all my paint recipes in it, so I could reacquaint myself with how I did these things in the past. I'd be totally lost without it. 

Even though it's a small and simple piece, I found it comforting to return to this style of painting after all these years. 

Thanks for dropping by!

- Curt

Thursday, March 23, 2023

10mm Empire Flagellants

The ranks of the Empire's armies are not only composed of troops from the loyal and sometimes vainglorious Elector Counts, but are also made up of the desperate, the destitute and the fanatical. These poor souls gather in riotous mobs led by fervent warrior priests, worshiping bloodthirsty vengeful gods, and as a whole are simply referred to as Flagellants. Once gathered on the battlefield, they work themselves up into a murderous, doom-ridden rage, ever-eager to get to grips with the enemy.  In game terms, they are a 'tar-baby' unit, not very dangerous when measured man-to-man, BUT as a mob they are excellent in tying-up high-value enemy units being as they won't break, and typically will fight to the bitter end. 

As I wanted a big mob of Flagellants on a double-sized base (signifying 'Deep' units in TtS), I had to break from my use of venerable GW metals as I didn't have enough on hand.  Instead these figures are all 3D prints from the talented MiniRat. 

I really like the variation and character of these figures. From the guys advancing in stocks, to those brandishing torches and flails the diverse poses really reinforce the ad-hoc, crazed mob feel of this unit.

As I didn't want to get bogged down in painting figures for which 90% would not really be seen, I used a few tricks I've learned over the years to quickly bash them out. One is using an airbrush to establish the main tones, both along the upper and lower part of the strips of figures. 

As the lower part of their torsos are hardly visible due to being tightly packed together, I used a mid-tone brown and a contrast wash from the waist down, while keeping their upper torsos relatively bright and flesh toned. This way I could use a variety of inks and washes to get a quick mob effect. 

So essentially the front of the front rank and the backs of the rear rank gets detailed brushwork. The remainder of the figures have basic blocked-in colours on their upper features alone, while their lower parts are painted as in shadow. 

I'm relatively pleased with the results, and the unit provides me a proof of concept as I want to do my upcoming Goblin army using a similar approach, being that they are almost exclusively organized on these large bases. 

Here is a pic of the force as it stands as we wrap up. Again, I'm happy with what I managed to get done through the catalyst of the Challenge. I'm thinking I just need about 4-5 more units and I'll have a decent-sized playable force.

Thanks for stopping in for a look and have a great rest of your day.

- Curt

Wednesday, March 22, 2023

10mm Empire Crossbowmen

I'll continue on with my gratuitous Empire schtick with a unit of plucky crossbowmen.

The original GW models for these units were designed around 2-man strips, which look great on the small Warmaster bases, but I wanted to take advantage of the larger real estate of the 'To the Strongest' style bases I'm using. These allow me to array them in a more natural looking (at least to my eye) ragged skirmish line.

Again, I found the base with just the figures on it to be a little wanting, so I quickly printed off a ruined cottage and a small field to give it some oomph. (I'm sure there are some turnips in there somewhere.)

A pic of the force as it stands now. 

Next up will be a horde unit.

Thanks for dropping in for a look!

- Curt

Monday, March 20, 2023

10mm Empire Artillery

Yes, it's me with yet another Empire entry, weee!! Today we have another support unit in the form of a battery of heavy artillery.

In the world of Warhammer, the army of the Empire is pretty much made up of regular baseline humans, so that means no troops with fancy inherent martial abilities, or huge scary monsters to fall back on. The regiments of the Empire must instead rely on iron discipline, a fatalistic faith in their cause, and lots of firepower. Lots and lots of firepower. Some of that firepower comes from the Steam Tanks, Volley Guns and Handgunners, but its the Empire's artillery park that are the long distance heavy hitters. Even an ancient dragon, a hulking giant, or a monstrous daemon is going to feel it if they get a direct hit from a 36 pounder. Guaranteed, it's gonna smart.

So, here is the first base of what will be several batteries of heavy guns for my Imperial force.

For the most part, this base is made up of old GW Warmaster castings, which I think still look great after all these years. Such fun to paint. 

I had fun with the base with the earth scorched dark by the fire of the guns.

While the gun and crew models are great, they are a bit bland just by themselves on the base. So I tarted them up by popping on an ammunition wagon, a 3D print from MinRat, and a tree from Thingiverse. 

And here is the collection to-date. Now, that's starting to look like a decent-sized detachment, or perhaps a wing of a larger army. Sure, there's more work to be done, but it's nice to see it beginning to come together.

Next we see some crossbowmen for the collection!

- Curt

Sunday, March 19, 2023

'Toot! Toot! Parp! Parp!' 10mm Steam Tanks

Hey There!

Another day, another unit of wee Empire guys to add to my slowly growing army. Today's reinforcement is a trio of Steam Tanks, fresh from the artificers and foundries of Nuln.

I have a soft spot for the Steam Tank as one of these was the centerpiece of my Warhammer Empire army for many a year. Granted, it usually blew up spectacularly, but it was always entertaining to have puttering around on the tabletop.

While there are some lovely 3d prints for the Empire Steam tank, I still love the heft (however slight) of the white metal originals, so I ran with a handful of them instead.

I quite like that the base size for To the Strongest allows me to place three of these beasties chugging away. I figure a trio of them are a bit more imposing than just a single vehicle, especially with these massed units on the tabletop. 

And here are the steamtanks arrayed with the rest of the existing Empire contingent.

Have a great upcoming week, everyone!

- Curt

Thursday, March 16, 2023

10mm Pistoliers for Warhammer Fantasy

Okay, this post number three to my ever-expanding Empire army. Today we have a regiment of Pistoliers trotting into line as reinforcements. 

These guys are basically the Warhammer equivalent of Renaissance 'Reiters'. Historially these chaps would use their heavy pistols to roll up and attempt to break up enemy formations, softening them up for the charge. Usually they would be in fairly tight, regimented formations called a 'caracole,' but these fellows are in a more flexible, skirmish formation. 

Again, I put in a clump of trees for a bit of fun (and it saves me from filling the base with figures). 

Aaand a gratuitous, as-it-stands-now, group shot of the force.

Thanks for popping in for a look. Maybe see you tomorrow with another reinforcement for the Empire!

- Curt

Tuesday, March 14, 2023

10mm Empire Knights


Next up for my 10mm Empire force is a regiment of heavily armoured knights. I love these guys as they have that heavy-hitting, Renaissance gendarme look about them, with their fully encased, fluted plate, lances with snapping pennants, and bedecked with ostentatious plumes. Wonderful stuff. 

In the Warhammer lore, the Empire is composed of a variety of provinces, each with their own independent army and unique livery. This is great as it allows collectors to have fun fielding units in a riot of colours, if they wish. 

This regiment is fairly restrained in their 'white' armour and unpainted lances. Perhaps for a future unit I'll splash out with more colour.

Speaking of additional colour, this regiment has a general attached who is clad in his family's vibrant red livery. 

For the flags, I delved into my decal box and pulled out some unused Titan transfers from my Adeptus Titanicus kits. They seem to do the trick for these Imperials.

And a final shot of the reinforced contingent with halberdiers in support and knights leading the way.

- Curt

Monday, March 13, 2023

First 10mm Units for The Empire

Hi All!

I've always been a big fan of Warhammer Fantasy's 'Old World'. This goes way, waay back to the 80s with my first introduction to the setting. While the rules themselves could often leave me cold at times (depending on the edition), it was the Old World that I always drew me back. The gritty, ersatz Renaissance aesthetic ticked off so many boxes for me - the heady mixture of plate armour, crazy magic, puff & slash uniforms and early gunpower weapons - it was just so cool.  I won't even start on my opinion on GW's inexplicable decision to blow up their own IP and replace the Old World with The Age of Stinkmar, other than to say it was an atrociously bad one.

Anyway, the Old World is wonderful source of nostalgia for me, and I always enjoy visiting it from time to time, either through role-playing (we had a fun time last year playing the 'Enemy in the Shadows' campaign), the occasional mass figures game (using the excellent 'One-Page Rules'), or just painting scads of 10mm stuff like I'm showing here today.

I really enjoyed Warmaster when it was released, as the figures were so innovative, and the rules brought a breath of fresh air to GW's stable (they are the fountainhead for Warlord's 'Hail Caesar', 'Pike & Shotte' and 'Blackpowder'). My interest was renewed a few years ago when I came across some old unopened blisters in storage. After re-reading the Warmaster rules, I decided to instead follow a different path, using a fantasy variant of  'To the Strongest' as the basis for my reboot. One of the selling features of using TtS are that the rules allow for large single bases for units which I really enjoy as it gives room for mass and creating little vignettes. Over the past two Challenges I've managed decent inroads with my Wood Elf and Tomb King armies, but now I have a new force to add: The Empire!

For me the Empire is the quintessential Warhammer Fantasy army. It has that wonderful mix of traditional units such as knights, halberdiers and spearmen, along with some esoteric oddities such as flagellants, volley guns and steam tanks. It really has something for everyone.

I have a bunch of stuff completed, but I'm going to show what I've been up to at a slow drip, with an entry a day until the close of the Challenge. 

First up is our General and two units of doughty Halberdiers. 

The casting of the General is quite impressive, astride his faithful Griffon, issuing orders to his troops. 

Nonetheless, the overall model wasn't quite as imposing as either my Tomb King or Wood Elf generals on their dragons, so I printed off and rescaled a ruined tower from Hagglethorn Hollow for him and his mount to perch on. Much better, I think.

Like the General, the Halberdiers are venerable GW metals. With my larger bases, I have the room to place the equivalent of two standard Warmaster units on them. I really like the massed look that this conveys. I also LOVE the heft of these things when compared to resin models. It really appeals to my lizard brain. :)

One of the blisters had been opened and I was short two strips of figures. To make it up I decided to use my terrain cheat and include a small structure to make up for the loss of space on the base. 

Again, I like doing this from time to time as it adds a bit of visual interest and gives players something to grip on to when moving the base around the tabletop.

I'll have another Empire unit up tomorrow. I hope you stop in for a peek. 


- Curt

Saturday, March 11, 2023

Objective Markers for Turnip28

Hey there!

Turnip28 is focused on seizing and holding objectives. These are usually scattered around the battlefield, often nestled in tricky locations, all for opposing forces to bleed each other dry over. Objectives can just be simple tokens, but I decided to amuse myself trying to make them sympathetic to the weird and disturbed setting of T28.

I thought an outhouse would be an excellent objective. Well, perhaps one that isn't as malodorous as this, but we all know: when you go to go - you got to go.

I enjoyed doing up this Catherine Wheel. In order to make it extra creepy (as if the Wheel needs to be more creepy) I added a Hanged Man, similar to what you'd find in a tarot deck. Hmm, will capturing this objective be good luck or bad?

Nothing like a guillotine to give you that reeal close shave. Also really handy for chopping carrots!

An abandoned trench pony. This poor little fella's a bit woebegone, with his heavy burden of victuals and ammunition. Any unit would be happy to have him in their ranks.

And finally, a beloved piano for the troops to gather 'round, singing songs of long lost potatoes and new found parsnips. Looks like it needs a bit of TLC a maybe some tuning.

All of these, except for the guillotine, are from Knucklebones Miniatures.

Now, back to the hobby desk to see what else I can get done before the Challenge concludes.

- Curt