Sunday, April 13, 2014

Progress Report 4/13/14 - Progress Delayed.

Been a few weeks since I posted anything. Don't feel great about that. I have reasons... numerous ones. The usual mix of work, hobbies that don't involve miniatures, life stuff, video games, and general lazy times. It hasn't been totally non-productive though! I finished up my first oil painting class (though I do not have a finished painting to show for it I do have new skills and experience) and I got a bit of paint on a few minis too. 

First I built a couple Deadzone minis.
Then I put on some skin tone for... ELVES.
Then I started on a test model.
The skin is driving me crazy.
I like the look overall though.
And there you have it. Progress of a sort. Spending the rest of the month out of town on the road for various work functions so I doubt I will get back to much painting in the next couple weeks. Too bad... I need to figure out what I am bringing to Headbangers Ball in May!!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Beer Review - Uinta Baba Black Lager.

Uinta Brewing Company - Baba Black Lager

Beer Type: Schwarzbier - 4.00% ABV

Appearance: Cool little 12 oz brown bottle with a very classy looking label. Beer poured a deep dark brown/red color with just a bit of beige head.      

Smell: Roasted malt and some coffee aroma. Not a lot going on but it smells enticing.  

First Drink: Coffee up front then some smokey flavors which I wasn't expecting. Ends with the malt and a hint of bitterness.   

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly light for a beer that is this dark in color. I expected it to be a bit heavier.    

Last Drink: Bitter is building but the roasted malts are really carrying this brew through til the end.          

Drinkability: Very damn drinkable! Not what I expected but I like it.            

Notes: Grabbed this in Asheville NC on a visit last year. It's also the first beer I have seen to have the USDA Organic label!         

Verdict: 3.75 out of 5. Easy drinking and full of flavor.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Progress Report 3/10/14 - Gobblin' Up The Sunlight.

Slowly... ever so slowly... we rise out of the frozen muck and mire which has bogged us down the past few months. A day of 30+ degree weather feels like a summer breeze. Sunlight and the creeping days give way to painting! Priming! Happiness! 

First up on the oil painting front - spent last week of class sealing the under painting of my Smoking Man painting and began work on a smaller painting while it was drying. Here's a quick rundown of that process, which I am using a different style of under painting for, and where I got to last week. 

Original reference photo.
My quick sketch of that photo on canvas.
Starting with an outline.
This under painting will be in three colors.
Working on the head first.
And here is where I ended up.
This style of under painting is called "dead color" and it uses just a few colors, black, and white for the shading. Afterwards You use glazes and lighter coats to bring the color out and make it more vibrant. Reminds me a bit of my current mini painting style actually. 

Speaking of painted minis I got a base coat and a dark wash on a few more Gangers for the Skullkrushas! The gang is coming together nicely now. 

Also got the thumbs up from my Dwarf mini client on what might be the last RPG commission I do for awhile (I think I have painted everyone at this point). Behold the Dwarf Cleric and his +1 marker!

Working on washes next then I will bring out a lot of detail on this mini. Not sure who makes it but I like the look of this guy a lot! Looking forward to seeing him completed (then maybe I should finish my own gaming minis). 

There is a slight chance I may actually play some WHFB this week!? Stay tuned for that if it is of interest to you....

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Progress Report 2/26/14 - Time is short and so is Feburary.

Ack! This month is just about history and aside from running Dog Bowl and playing a bit of games I haven't managed to do much on the painting and modeling front. 

First up a quick update on my oil painting. I missed two classes this month so I am a bit behind. This week I "finished" my underpainting and will be moving on to adding color next week. 

Adding detail to the hand.
Changed up the face shape a bit and added detail.
Spent a little bit of time working on the SKULLKRUSHAS for my Goliath Necromunda gang. Got two more Gangers done. They have names but I can't remember them at the moment!!

Working on a commission for a Dwarf character that I hope to have done in the next couple weeks. Spent some time converting and sculpting some bits for that but I don't want to show them quite yet. On to March!!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Dog Bowl II Is History!

Dog Bowl II is in the books! It was a great one day event held at Marmalade Dog in Kalamazoo, MI with 12 coaches from Michigan, Indiana, and Illinois representing. The rules were intended to give an edge up to the underdog teams of Blood Bowl and they turned out in force! I brought out my Khemri for the firs time (ever) and came in second to last place (though I was in the running for the Cas award with 11). The final racial breakdown was:

3 Khemri
2 Slann
2 Ogre
2 Humans
1 Underworld
1 Chaos Pact
1 Orc

After four rounds of Blood Bowl action only 4 coaches could take home the illustrious Dog Bowl trophies I so lovingly crafted out of bits of trash and plastic I found around my house a couple days before. 


Best In Show (1st Place) - Siggylama (Chaos Pact)
Second Place (2nd Place) - Delevus (Khemri)
Greyhound (Most TDs) - Flyingdingle (Slann with 9 TD)
Junkyard Dog (Most Cas) - Rougethirteen (Ogres with 15 Cas)
Hind Dog (Wooden Spoon) - Lycanthrope

Thanks to everyone who came out to the event and to all my opponents for 4 great games (even my arch-nemesis Valdric... I'll get you next time!!). Highlight of the tourney for me was running a chainsaw through Siggyllama's 3 Chaos Pact big guys in consecutive fashion in game one. Hack had a taste for BIG BOY BLOOD in that game!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Progress Report 2/5/14 - Hair of the dog (stuck to everything I paint).

Another week of sub-zero temps kept me from getting any miniature painting done. I did glue together a couple pieces of plastic I dug out of the trash to make awards for the upcoming Dog Bowl this week.

Cap, beer thing, and skull trophy.
Foam turd in a cap upside down.
I've since added some primer and paint to these trophies but the paint keeps flaking off and driving me crazy! Not sure if it is the temperature outside (where I prime in my garage) or the materials or a mix of both. Oh well... they don't have to look stellar. I just wanted to have something to give away that didn't cost me anything (because I have nothing to spend). 

On the oil painting front I made some pretty big strides this week. My class last week was cancelled due to the bad weather but I came back and attacked the canvas on Monday when I got down to business on the face of my figure.

I had a quick demo on how to better set up my palette.
This bit on the face is my instructor's work as a demo.
Blocked in the shades on the face.
Began adding some detail in the face and the tie.
Still a long way to go on this painting but I had a much easier time with the paint after a short bit of instruction from my teacher. I found that my major challenge was too much thinning of the paint and I really started using a lot more paint on the canvas. Something I don't do much of when it comes to mini painting! I'm always thinning that down so much. Also I used a really big brush for this work which is not something I feel comfortable with yet but it was good practice. 

Dog Bowl this weekend! I will be playing odd man out. While I had first intended to take Ogres I am letting a friend use them instead and will be bringing Khemri for their first tournament outing and first time on the Bloodbowl pitch with me Coach Randroid! Should be fun!!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Beer Review - Green Man IPA.

Green Man Brewery - Green Man IPA

Beer Type: English India Pale Ale - 6.00% ABV

Appearance: 12 oz brown bottle with a green man on it. Beer poured a copper/amber color with just a nice thick off-white head.      

Smell: Caramel malt and just a bit of hops. Not a lot of aroma here that I can detect.   

First Drink: Bunch of bitter in the front, some tart citrus or grassy flavors, then a bit of hops spice and some malt sweetness to round it all out.   

Mouthfeel: Pretty light but there seems to be a good amount of carbonation.     

Last Drink: A lot more hops and grassy flavors coming through now. The lasting bitterness is nice.           

Drinkability: Wasn't expecting this to be as bitter as it was based on the smell. It's good and goes down easy.            

Notes: Grabbed this in Asheville NC on a visit last year. Tried to get some from the brewery but got kicked out by an angry woman 30 minutes before they closed because she didn't feel like serving me.        

Verdict: 3.75 out of 5. Not so bad and not so great. Easy drinkin'