Friday, May 27, 2016

Fallen Imperial Eagle Terrain

In pushing through to furnish new terrain for my tabletop, I pulled out the fallen Imperial eagle from the Honored Imperium terrain set. Last year I posted an article about painting the space marine statue.  You can see it again at the end of this post along with the new eagle.

The fallen eagle is fairly simple to paint.  I based the whole thing black, then used my Iwata Eclipse airbrush to paint almost the whole thing.  I started with a Vallejo German grey, then a lighter grey to highlight the stone/plasticrete eagle.  The airbrush is great for this.  By carefully pulsing the trigger and varying the distance to the model, it was a simple matter to lighted the raised portions and add some color variations to some of the large flat surfaces.

With the greys done, I used two colors of Vallejo browns for the earthy parts.  This included spraying brown carefully on the bits of earth scattered across the grey eagle itself.  here again, the airbrush really helped blend this in and make it convincing with now hard paint lines. 

Once the base coating and early highlights were added, I washed the whole thing with GW Nuln Oil.  After letting this dry, I selectively washed the earth portions with GW Agrax Earthshade. I carefully ashed just the cracks and lines in the stonework of the eagle to give a dirty implression to the stone work without adding too much brown overall.

With all of that dry, I then dry brushed a Vallejo bone color over the earth parts, applying a heavy coat over the skulls so they pop a bit more from the earth.  A dry brush of a light grey then went over all the sharp parts of the fallen eagle itself.  This was then sealed with Testors Master Series Lusterless Flat Lacquer.  This is the best flat coat out there, buy some and use it! :)

Above, we have the eagle on one of my new mats from These "mouse pad" material mats are the best thing I've seen for a simple, portable game surface. Below, I added the bronze space marine statue I painted last year to see how they look together on the table.

I love the way these pieces have come out. My next plan is to experiment with weathering powders in preparation to using powders on my armor and other models.  These simple pieces seem like a good place to try the new powder techniques. 

I also started another building based on the pieces I had left over from the Sector Imperialis box set combined with the sprues form the Imperial Knight Renegade box set. I'll post about that when I have more to show there.  All painted, this will give me a richly appointed 4x6 game board when combined with the game mats.  I look forward to actually gaming on them soon! 

But really, my 40k experience is more about the hobby and less about the playing these days...

Cheers and Happy Gaming!

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Knight Paladin WIP - Adventures with the Airbrush

The various armor panels of the Knight paladin went into the paint booth last week.  After too much deliberation (I can seldom make up my mind on the best scheme...), I opted for a split white/green paint scheme.  This will be a scheme that departs from the palettes of my existing Imperial armies and should help the Paladin stand out in my collection. This is also a new challenge as I have not painted white in any amount, esp. not on armor and the split scheme allowed me to toy with masking and airbrushing. So first the white...

Please pardon the crazy image look.  I have been doing ALOT of black base coating so the spray booth is black and the white LEDs cast an odd color in these shots. I used my new Iwata Eclipse airbrush with Vallejo game air colors.  I started with a coat of 72.734 Bonewhite laid right over the black base coat, leaving the back of the panels black and avoiding the trim within reason.  I will brush paint the trim back to black later to prep for brass or gold.  I am using a strip of stiff cardboard with double-sided tape to hold the various small pieces in place for spraying - a great pro tip! I used to hold the pieces which led to all sorts of shenanigans, even with latex gloves on.

Next, a layer of 72.701 Dead White went on, sprayed from the center out, avoiding the edges next to trim to leave some shadow. I plan to use washes or glazes to tint the armor later to blend all the colors and add depth, some age, and details to the panels.  This will happen after the trim is base coated to tie everything together.

Above, the greens have been added.  I first flat coated the white and let it dry.  Then I masked off the areas that would remain white and laid down a coat of 72.728 Dark Green followed by highlights of
72.729 Sick Green. As with the Dead White above, I sprayed from the center out avoiding the edges against the trim. One this dried, I removed the tape.  

I was immediately reminded of how important careful taping is.  Some green bled under the white in spots and will have to be cleaned up by brush.  Not what I had hoped for, but hopefully recoverable.  Overall, I was very pleased with how this came out. here's a shot of the painted pieces in their current on the gaming table.

Freeblade Imperial Knight Paladin WIP

I used the airbrush to carefully base the armor shields on the weapons at the same time I was basing the larger pieces.  Also, some base coat metals have been dry brushed on the main skeleton using Vallejo model color 70.865 oily steel over 70.863 gun metal. This is just a start and more metals will be added to build up some contrast and interest around the large sections of metal skeleton.

That's the progress so far.  Stay tuned for follow up articles as more progress is made.  Comments are welcome, particularly if there are questions or suggestions for more or less detail in these posts.

Cheers, and Happy Gaming!

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

What's on the hobby desk today?


Wanted to drop a quick post this week with a collection of on-going projects I have on my desk.  First up is the Imperial Knight Paladin with all of its parts based flat black...

 Next up are the assembled and primed models from the Execution Force boxed game.  The assassins will be welcomed into my overall Imperial force.  Not sure what will happen with the Chaos forces, other than to collect dust waiting for a game of Execution Force to happen. The Lord model is pretty awesome though and will be a fun painting challenge. Expect some follow up posts this year as I move to painting some or all of these models.

Execution Force WIP

Next up is the 30th Anniversary Space Marine.  I've been in the game since second edition and really enjoyed the release of this model, and the Codex Apocrypha that returns a wealth of prior material to print.

Dark Angels 30th Anniversary Space Marine WIP

In hindsight, I should have built this as a Mentor Legion marine for flavor and use with my Imperial forces.  I chose instead to build him as a Dark Angel marine to fit with my existing Dark Angels.  The original backpack and shoulder pads are replaced here with corresponding Dark Angels pieces from the bits box. Next up, this model will get a primer coat of green. He'll probably get mounted on a custom base as well, so expect another post on this little guy soon. Not sure if I want to deviate too far form the rest of my Dark Angels which use a very plain gravel base.

Also in the pipeline is a build of the city fight terrain included in the Imperial Knights: Renegade box set. This will either be used to make one new building, or possibly two smaller pieces for variety to round out that terrain set. I have a lot of left over walls, doors and debris, but no floor sections.  I will have to see what I can build with these added sprues.

That's it for now; a good amount of open project work and plenty more on the shelf if I hit a wall on completing these pieces.  I also have two contemptor dreadnoughts and a predator built and based for my 30k Dark Angels 1st legion collection.  So they could get some paint at any point now that I've played a little with the color scheme.

Good luck with your own projects and as always, 

Happy Gaming!

Monday, May 2, 2016

Freeblade Imperial Knight Paladin


Today I'm sharing a couple work-in-progress shots of my second knight titan. Like my previous Imperial Knight Errant, this will also be a free blade knight.  I haven't decided on a final name or back story but this knight will not follow in the inquisitorial footsteps of the Errant.

I like posing Imperial Knights on custom bases.  They are great fun to build and allow for a lot of creativity and imagination to flow freely.  For this knight, I imagined a city ruin base to go along with my latest terrain project. The base include some Death Korps of Kreig infantry bits, including a trooper's arm pinned under the rubble, still clutching a lasrifle. A section of ribbed hose made from green stuff and a resin skull round out some random elements of interest.

Here was an opportunity to  use some of the off-cuts from the the city fight terrain buildings.  A few choice pieces were sprinkled about here, with the main pieces serving to raise the left advancing leg of the knight to set his pose at a slight angle, rather than repeating the flat stable pose of the prior Knight Errant. I was not interested in cutting the legs on this knight to make the pose more dynamic.  I have three more to build over time so perhaps I'll try a custom leg pose in the future.

Freeblade Imperial Knight Paladin

For the pose, I went with a menacing firing stance with the Knight clearly sighting a target for a lethal battle cannon barrage. This stance will clearly show the Knight Paladin int he role of fire support, where the upraised chain sword of the Knight Errant I built presents an aggressive close assault stance. I will admit that he doesn't look all that imposing stripped of most of the armor plating.  This has been left off to allow for easier airbrushing of the components and clear painting of the knight's skeleton which would otherwise be hidden.  The carapace armor is not glued on and is simply dry fit for these photos.

Freeblade Imperial Knight Paladin on Custom Base

Here is the knight positioned on the base. The right foot is firmly placed in the rubble, crushing a pipe under the knight's obvious bulk, the left foot crashing into the crumbled permacrete of the ruins. The parts have all been based, and an Icarus pattern twin-linked autocannon added as a carapace weapon.  All carapace weapons for my knights will be magnetized to allow for easy customization for future games.

Up next will be a post of the in-progress painting for this guy.  Not sure where I'm going there yet, but the current plan is for green armor with Ivory accents. I've been using the Freeblade iOS game to play with the paint scheme - to the extent that the game allows for custom painting.  It's a great way to test some color schemes and see what they would look like on a knight!

Cheers and Happy Gaming!