Friday, September 28, 2012

Showcase: Haradel Questers

This week we've got a two-for, last week's what's on my desk and this week's showcase.  Both features are pics of a recent commission I finished for the Freeblades game system and one of my best customers Jon C.  I was set to task to paint a Haradel freeband and one one giant, called a Golat.  Let's take a look.

For this guy I wanted to highlight his lifestyle as a scavenger and plunderer.  His armor and clothing are made partly of pieces he's taken off his adversaries.  If you look closely his left pauldron contains the same green and white check pattern as that I painted on a knight for Jon a few weeks ago.  And again on his skirt, there are the colors of the Haradel band I painted this week, the light and dark blues of Arsmouth County.  To finish off the look I kept all the metallics on the model dull and forgoing layers of highlight and instead washed them with Agrax Earthshade to give them a rusty undertone.  A speckling of Mournfang Brown and highlighted with Skrag Brown completed the rust effect.  The verdigris on the brass was achieved with a layer of Hawk Turquoise highlighted with a 1:1 mix of HT and white.

As is befitting of many a good knightly band the group is filled out with a healthy meat-shield of peasants.  The Muster Thresher is one such noble soul, wearing his tattered garb and not a bit of armor this guy is ready to give his life for his betters (or so the Haradelan aristocracy would like to think so).

Not all questing knights are of the imitated class, this is an apprentice of Barek.

The High Questor leads the Haradelan freeband proudly wearing the color of his county Arsmouth.

Another peasant support unit is this Thresher archer.  Right away I noticed that this model would be a perfect a pefect homage to one of my all time favorite video game characters, can you guess which one?

Like many a fantasy knightly caste, the Haradelans have a warrior-priest.  This guy is called a "Fist of Vidunar."  A few freehand touches really helped to fill the wide blank areas on his cloak and tabard and furthered the priestly motif.

As for the what's on my desk portion of this week's post, it's eyes, eyes, eyes!

Each time I paint a commission or a piece for my personal collection, the eyes are always a part of the model I pay especial attention to.  In my opinion they're a feature that can really make or break a finished model.  Do them wrong and it sets the whole thing off, do them right and you can elevate a model to hobbying greatness.

Doing eyes is easier than you think, and possibly a less precise science as well.  When I paint an eye I start by creating the white.  Ok, that's a no brainer, but what may not be is that I often overshoot the boundaries and paint outside the lines.  I don't do this on purpose, but I don't fret over it either.  When painting eyes remember this, it doesn't have to be perfect until the end.  This is what I mean, after the whites I'll paint an iris.  Once again if I go outside the bounds of the eye it's not big deal, the key here is only overextend onto the eyelids, not the rest of the whites.  After that a point of black and you're almost done.  Maybe you did fudge while painting the whites, irises or pupils, or maybe even all of them.  This is all you need to do at the end to clean up: take the darker layer of skin tone and hit the eye lids and then again with a lighter shade, viola, they're perfect!

The reason why I go into such detail and am adamant about this is that lots of people try to get the eyes they do perfect with the first brush stroke and are disappointed when they don't.  They don't want to go back and touch up.  The key to any good paint job is touching up after the fact, often it's not perfect the first time!

That's it for this week, stop by again!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Freeblades Gallery: Illusionist, Necromancer, and Porcupine Bears

This week I'm showing off another commission I've done for the Freeblades game system.  Some of this week's offering were first detailed in last month's "What's on My Desk" feature covering custom bases.  The models are done and here they are!

This is a Mershael Illusionist.  I wanted to give him a base denoting his prowess as an accomplished sorcerer, but one that also put in a rural setting where he'd been in the thick of the fighting.

What I ended upon was a tome of spells and a few bottles of potion sitting at his feet to give him the feel that he's in the heat of casting a spell, and has hurriedly gobbled down a poultice with his trusty tome open for reference.

This necromancer also for the DGS Freeblades line, offered an opportunity to do a heavy under-lighting effect that I couldn't resist.  After first seeing this model I knew I wanted to do an effect reminiscent of Minas Morgul from the Lord of the Rings movies (there's something incredibly sinister about under-glowing green light).

Jon threw another couple of Grular my way to add to his freeband that I completed in July.  For these two I wanted to go with a darker armor scheme to set them apart from their brother models already in the throng.

Check out the Krang below and his lame right eye!

In some Freeblades missions you have to go up against NPC's or go on animal hunts, for those scenarios there are the porcupine-bears called Grushes.

The Grush models are fantastic and I had a lot of fun painting their faces, which are incredibly expressive.

For the one above, I went with a traditional Grush coloration of dark browns and red browns and for the second I wanted a more exotic look, so I painted an albino complete with pink eyes.

That's it for this week, thanks for stopping by and as always, good hobbying and happy gaming!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Showcase: Dwarf Huscarl, Pirate, Symidian Merchant, and More!

Another commission is in the books and I'm proud to show off the completed models in this week's showcase.  Let's take a look!

This is DGS Games' dwarf (called Kuzaarik) huscarl.  This is a splendid piece with tons of potential and a true joy to paint.  Bronze armor is absolutely gorgeous and I took every opportunity to put as much bronze on the model as possible.

A model that I detailed as a work in progress in last week's "What's on My Desk" feature was this pirate.  The model itself is relatively straightforward, so I wanted to build some complexity with the base.  As you can see in last week's post, I built the base from plasticard and green stuff to make a pier.

A thin piece of plasticard made an excellent wanted poster.

I built the pirate's color pallet on a red and black base.  For contrast points I focused on her green-blue eyes, the plumage in her cap (bird of paradise) and the ropes.  Usually I don't consider brown a contrast point, but there you have it.

This Symidian Merchant is another favorite of mine, he has a huge amount of character for such a simple sculpt.  Like the pirate above, this mini just wouldn't do standing amongst the bushes, so I sculpted up a Persian rug to put him in place of a market bazaar (or lavish pavilion).

This man-at-arms is another model I spent time detailing last week.  The richness truly is in the details here, lots of freehand heraldry and insignias.

This stone golem, called Zakerlash in the DGS Freeblades universe, was an interesting paint.  I wanted to highlight the forward motion of the model so I placed the rocks on its base leveled up and then out to create a complementary base flow.  I think it also give the model the impression that the golem is manifesting out of its rocky surroundings.

The last two pieces were far more mundane, first, an animal swarm, and second, a snake swarm.  Though the name of the piece above is "swarm" it's my feelings that it is more woodland cuddly than swarmy.  Ha ha.  All the animal sculpts on the base are great and gave me the opportunity to build a rather pleasant nature scene.  Note how the other animals are distancing themselves from the one predator (the fox) on the base.

For the snake swarm I wanted to depict as many poisonous/deadly snakes as possible.  From left to right they are: Diamondback Rattlesnake, Coral Snake, Green Tree Python, Arizona Black Rattlesnake, Egyptian King Cobra, and an Monacle Cobra.

Thanks for stopping by, join me again next week!
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