First Painting Challenge Dwarf Done!

Finished the first of four Etsy dwarves for my painting challenge a few days ago.  He is pictured here with my newest star of the moment lurking the ever-blurry background — the dreaded rust turtle from my last post.  The last day of the challenge is April 3rd so while I’ll be cutting it close getting my other three dwarves finished, I think I’ll make it.

I’d watch out if I were that dwarf.

I want all four of my dwarves to have different colored hair.  This guy got the same color as Roboute Guilliman, so my husband’s favorite primarch is in good company.  A pretty easy recipe and I liked how it turned out, compared to my dreadful and mercifully uncatalogued attempts some years ago with Averland Sunset.  I primed white, based with Zandri Dust, applied a Seraphim Sepia wash, and highlighted with Ushabti Bone.

The gold beard cap is an old five-step gold recipe.  Base with Balthasar Gold, layer with Gehenna’s Gold and then Auric Armor Gold.  Step four is Agrax Earthshade and finally a drybrush of Golden Griffon.

Is Turtle getting closer?  I can’t tell.

One thing I learned was that I like the Games Workshop contrast paints for edging and defining grooves.  I used Basilicanum Grey Contrast to pick out the design on his axe and line the inside edges on his shoulder pads, and Skeletal Horde Contrast in the grooves on his leather armbands.*  The armband effect is kind of subtle but I like how it looks in person.

I might try something similar but different and maybe fancier on the next dwarf, the ginger-haired one, who has the same type of armbands.  Maybe he’ll get magical, fire armbands or something.

“Wot’s that behind me?”

The base was just a simple dark gray and then wash with Nuln Oil, making sure I got the wash into the gaps in the stone pattern.  I put couple of smidgens of Astrogranite Debris onto the base, mainly because I have a pot of it kicking around, and then drybrushed with various lighter shades of gray with a little off-white at the end.

Wizard’s Familiar Cat hates Turtle getting all of the attention!

So much for painting challenge dwarves.  Sir John, if you happen to see this and are having your morning or high tea and crumpets, biscuits, cookies, etc. I’m giving you a Minor Class W (for work-in-progress) Nurgle Alert to put your cup down before proceeding further.

Nurgle Blood Bowl Icon 125

I have made a little progress on WIP Poxwalker #18 while I was putting the finishing touches on our dwarf friend.  I had completely forgotten, but about a year ago I dropped my poxwalker on the floor and broke off the tip of its largest dorsal tentacle.  I noticed (and hence remembered) last night when I was messing around with some contrast paints.

I rooted around in my Chaos bin until I found a likely looking pointy bit at the end of a plastic chain from a Chaos Biker sprue.  After a bit of cutting, filing, squinting, fighting with my bottle of Model Master Liquid Cement for Plastic Models, etc. I ended up with the result you see here.  Will be a mighty weapon to go along with the mechanical arm and its various diseases both offensive and defensive as well as those of an informative nature.**

Just hope I don’t drop the stupid thing again.

Time is flying by and I plan on getting my second dwarf completed soon.  He’s about 80% done so this shouldn’t be too hard.  That will leave only two of the little rotters and my painting challenge dwarves will be complete.  If all goes spectacularly well, I might even finish my poxwalker too.

The poxwalker gives me an (obvious) idea for an April painting challenge:  “Finish Something April.”  As the title suggests, finish up a model or group of models that you started work on but remains incomplete.  It can be something you just bought or a neglected model that has been gathering dust for untold centuries while the stars die and galaxies laugh.

Perhaps I could finally realize my dark dream of completing all 20 of my poxwalkers?

Dwarf Hammer Clip Art

* That Skeletal Horde paint will end up becoming distractingly ubiquitous in my painting efforts if I’m not careful.  I was going to try and make a joke that was a Skeletal Horde-based variation on the old saw about how if all you got is a hammer then every problem looks like a nail, but I couldn’t think of a good one.  Any suggestions?

** The poxwalkers will need the added tentacle-based weaponry because I’ve been told you need to pay points to bring your poxwalkers over their starting numbers now with the latest disturbances from the FAQ Warp.

I know we peers of Chaos Undivided are supposed to “embrace change” (yes, even when painting Nurgle stuff!) and venerate that ethereally tentacled technosorceror from olden days, Heraclitus of Ephesus, son of Bloson, etc. etc., but I would much rather it be change that benefits me and bonus flux points for it hurting my enemies in the bargain!   Iä! Iä! Thultzeentch fhtagn! Ph’nglui mglw’nfah Thultzeentch R’lyeh wgah’nagl fhtagn!

March Might & Magic Painting Challenge

I thought it might be fun to do my own painting challenge, so in the spirit of being able to paint pretty much whatever the heck you want, I offer the March Might & Magic Painting Challenge.*

Rules of the Challenge

  • Post a beginning picture of what you intend to paint for the challenge.  It can be at any stage of work-in-progress, from still in the box to partially painted.  It is up to you.  If you don’t have a blog, you can send me a picture at the email listed on my About page or leave a comment on this page and we’ll figure it out.
  • I will do at least one mid-challenge progress report, which you can take part in or not as you see fit.  I’ll keep an eye on everyone’s sites, who I know is participating.  If I miss your picture you can drop me a comment or put in a ping-back to my blog so I’ll see your update.
  • I’m going to close the challenge on April 3, 2020 at midnight (last place on Earth).  Then I will do a final round-up post.
  • You can join in at any time and add more stuff, if you want, as the month goes along.
  • Models from any company, range, time period, scale, etc. are welcome.
  • Any questions or anything I might have forgotten?  Let me know in the comments.

Best not to let rodent infestations get to this point!

Magic seems kind of obvious:  anything … magical.  Might can encompass almost everything else.  Great heroes and villains are mighty, sure, but so are ordinary individuals of a larger band, mob, or unit too.  Tanks of course, but why not the mighty factory (or remains thereof) that produces such machines?  As for plane, train, and automotive enthusiasts, I’d say your models fit the challenge too.

Primaris snipers by Joe Lai.  Love those bases.  Check out Joe’s stuff on Instagram.

Some random person in a jump suit with a wrench and toolbox would qualify too when you think about the empire/rebel faction/whatever they are a part of.  Even abstract principles like Friendship or Anger could apply since the miniature in question is a single representation of that powerful force.  Anyway, you get the idea:  paint what you want for the challenge and I’m sure it’ll be fine.  (If not, see the footnote below.)

From The Battle of Borodino, 1812, during French invasion of Russia

As for me, I plan on completing my four WIP dwarves.  I will likely add more models as these guys start to look prettier, but for now I think I had better at least get to the highlighting and dry brushing stage before I start looking too closely at anything else.

I’m probably going to include the owl and complete my familiars too.

I am looking forward to seeing what other people come up with, and hope, dear reader, you too will participate in my first painting challenge.


* As John, 1st Baron Varnish, rightly said over here, the “Might” might stand for “Might Get Painted This Month.”  So there is another way to shoehorn models into the “Might” theme if nothing else works! 🙂

And lastly, I had to sneak in a touch of Nurgle: Wudugast’s lovely, little poxwalker, complete with bloated arm, certainly scratches that itch so to speak.  I agree with Faust, who said in the comments that it seems like we’ve stumbled upon this poxwalker in the midst of its transformation!

A friendly poxwalker by Wudugast of Convert or Die!

Poxwalker #17 (MAGAPPXWLKR-XVII)**

I decided at long last to finish up my poor, long-suffering friend, good old Work-in-Progress Poxwalker #17.  I guess it needs a new name now since this zombie is a WIP no longer.  How about Mechanical Arm Green and Purple Poxwalker #17 or MAGPPXWLKER-XVII to use something approaching a more official-sounding Death Guard designation?

Not sure why the silly cat felt a need to wander into the picture.

I didn’t tread into too much new territory with my newest minion, though the belly tentacles sort of went through various shades of purple and blue and purple again.  Oh, and of course I continued my usual practice of putting a ton of work into getting some small, fiddly, inconsequential detail just so, only to cover it with snot, grime and blood.  So there’s that.*

OTOH, toads and Nurgle go together like peanut butter and pus.  Yummy!

I continue to pick away at my four dwarves and hope to get them done by the Squaduary deadline of February 28th.  It is going to be a close thing and right now I put my chances at 50/50.  I am working on them every night though and even if I don’t make the deadline I’m going to continue to prioritize getting them done because I want them for my D&D games.

Speaking of painting challenges, I thought maybe I’d do one or two of my own this year because … why not?  I was thinking of something along the lines of next month being March Marauders and Might where the theme can be miniatures that are either singular, mighty heroes and monsters, such as a giant or a space marine hero/captain/whatever, or marauders in the sense of being despoilers, bandits or invaders.***

A very broad theme indeed, I think.  More on that next time if I decide to do it.  If so, I have a group of six Etsy bugbear-looking things with maces and halberds that seem pretty suitable, and if I’m feeling really squirrelly there is always the Abandoned Lonely Bloat Drone. that continues to languish away in my miniatures case.

Death Guard Symbol 125 wide

* In this case it was the little tri-lobed Death Guard amulet thingie depending from a cord on its loincloth.  I took great pains with getting the red and white bits just so.  I’m not sure if I should try again or not with the amulet on the next one (the yellow loincloth and black leather belt twin of this one) and then unsuccessfully try not to obscure my work again?  Knowing me, I probably will and regret it!  After all, a true mark of a good Chaos Noble is the fact that when “nothing else works, then a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through.”

“I am 100% certain I’ll finish those dwarves by the 28th!”

** Hi John. This is the mandatory, pseudo-official Nurgle warning so as not to spoil that period of time you block out each day (or several times each day?) for your tea and baked goods-related activities!

*** They can be good-guy invaders or bad-guy invaders.  It matters not so long as the blood and paint both continue to flow.

As Promised, Again With WIP Poxwalker #17

As promised, I offer a couple of pictures of where work-in-progress poxwalker #17 stands since the last time I turned my proverbial painting lens on this worthy zombie.*

PW#18 waits with undead patience in the fuzzy background.

I still have a bit more work to do, though I’m getting close to the end stages now.  The purple tentacles used to be blue, but I decided they were far too pretty in a wow-that-looks-like-it-would-look-great-on-a-blue-horror pretty and not poxwalker pretty so I hit them with some purple shade.  Upon reflection I might have hit them too hard and maybe I should have used some medium and/or tried blue shade or a blue and purple mix.  I still can, but I’m undecided.  I might leave them more or less as is and just highlight them a little.

Inertia and all….

After all, they are just a couple of belly tentacles and not really worth too much thought in the scheme of things.  Are there not whole regiments of guardsmen in the world who are still painfully bereft of the Grandfather’s multifarious blessings?

What kind of maggots to go with this time?**

I still have a few decisions to make such as what kind of maggots, and what kind of pox to go with this time.  Maybe Emerald Pox.  I’ve only done that with one other poxwalker, (one of the dreaded beach boy twins) so it isn’t overdone with this mob.***

I’m probably not going to rust up the mechanical arm too much.  Maybe a few Rhinox Hide patches and the like.****  I am thinking of busting out an old brush and the bottle of AK Interactive engine oil and experimenting with that.  I tried glossy Nuln Oil for a bit of fresh oil look, but that didn’t really work for me so far.

Next time I will post some pictures of the fully completed poxwalker #17, a work in progress no longer.  I’ll know it is done by my usual tried-and-true method, which is when my fiddling seems to make things no better and maybe even worse.  That is when I know it is time to stop with many things in life, miniatures and writing both.


“Promised” should be construed to mean a non-binding echo of a glimmer of a reflection upon said Humble Narratrix’s part to maybe put up some pictures of WIP-PW#17 if and when it is convenient to do so before becoming distracted by less important things.

**  It is a very good sign when you type “maggot” in the search box for your site and a whole bunch of pages come up!

***  I haven’t forgotten about my idea of having countless hordes of poxwalkers, plaguebearers, etc. and identifying each mob with a different disease.

****  Perhaps the mechnical arm was in good working order when PW#17 was gifted with the blessings of Nurgle rather than the usual state of affairs, which of course is that the rust and falling apart look is in fact a wonderful magic that makes the mechanism in question work at least as and probably better than when it was right off the forge world assembly line.

Death Guard Symbol 125 wide

Poxwalker-in-progress and more Wattpad writing

So I spiral out the long, sad task of painting my mob of twenty poxwalkers into late 2019.  I would say, “I’ll finish the lot before 2020!” but we all know that probably has as much truth in it as a short, sharp fit of sneezing meaning nothing but continued perfect health after putting in an eight hour shift driving around a bus full of sick people.*

Here we have Ole #17, who is one of my current works-in-progress.  I gave this poxwalker some attention this past weekend, sketching out the base colors on its belt and loin cloth as well as beginning a little experiment with purple tentacles.  I also put some paint on the Death Guard symbol.  Still a lot more work to go, as you can see, but it’s coming along.

Unfinished but only semi-forgotten!

So far as my Wattpad adventures go, here is what’s been going on there for me lately:

  • I’ve been sketching out the next section for the Gabby novel.  I’ll certainly post here when it goes live.
  • Another user, Microbytes, who puts out little anthologies of collected work on Wattpad, used a drabble I wrote in August, called “Survive to Swim” in their Micro-August Anthology.**
  • Microbytes struck again, this time notifying me that they are doing 30 days of writing prompts called “30 Days of Spooky Tales.”  I came to the party a bit late, but I am going to make an attempt to complete all 30 prompts and make a little Wattpad collection/book/whatever out of them.  Right now I am up to three done and collected under the dubious work-in-progress name of “Thirty Days of Darkness.”

For next time I am hoping for more progress on the aforementioned Ole Number Seventeen, and I might play around a bit with some Plaguebearer Flesh contrast paint I picked up last week.  I can always tell I haven’t been to the game store in a long time when I see a new staff member and she gives me the Welcome to the Store New Customer Speech!

Also plan to work on more of the Spooky Tales prompts and of course Gabby.  Hope everyone who managed to read this far has a good week.  May you make good progress on your varied projects, both mundane and multifarious!


* I was going to say “we all know that would probably be a lie” but I thought it best (for my own continued good relations with the Grandfather if for no other reason) to stick to a Nurgle-based (and rather familiar situation, to your Humble Bus-Driving Narratrix) rather than a Tzeentch-based figure of speech.

** A “drabble” is apparently a 100 word short story.  I didn’t know this until I stumbled upon this tidbit in Wattpad.  I found some interesting information on the subject over on Wikipedia.

Red Spiny Backed Poxwalker

Another poxwalker enters the painted ranks, this one being number sixteen of twenty.  A classic example of the Red or Eastern Spiny Backed Poxwalker as coined/pointed out by that Perspicacious Poxwalkerer and Taxonomist, Alexis West.  As she points out in the comments appearing with the post here, this worthy is the “rarer Eastern Spiny Poxwalker … [with its] reddish tones.”

The trend of yellow clothes/red skin continues.

I was originally going for something where the spines/horns/pointy bits were a bit more set off from the rest of the hide, color-wise, but decided that perhaps I was happy with how it turned out more or less.  I find that once they are done, poxwalkers sort of grow on me, and my energies turn toward the next experiment and it is best to close the book and let events take their unnatural course.  After all, what is another soulless minion in a horde of the damned, even if its horns are or aren’t heavily contrasted with the skin in a way satisfying to even the most discriminating warmaster with a eye for color?*

I might add some color to that tan on tan plant…

A funny thing about the yellow pants (and it somehow keeps happening with this mob) … I put quite a bit of effort into the pants and by the end I’m covering up all of my hard work with goop, gore and brown ink.  Then I resolve to not put so much work in to the next poxwalker’s yellow clothes and then I do!

… but probably not!

Another view of the formerly yellow pants.  I got particularly carried away here with the ink, blood, toner, sand, and who knows what else.  Oh well, it is all good though because the next time I paint one of the red/yellow poxwalkers I won’t put so much work into the clothes.  Did the weapon pretty much the same as before, though I went for a slightly darker effect with more black with a little brown ink as opposed to the converse, which is what I did on the other Spiny Back.  A pretty subtle difference, I think.

So I’m in the last month of my second MFA class.  I plan on getting another poxwalker done in the interregnum between the end of this class and the start of the next one.**  Also sent some stuff I recently wrote to a few magazines, as well as a poem I wrote over 20 years ago to the school magazine, which made the mistake of telling me that consider previously published work.


* One is of course aware that poxwalkers, strictly speaking are not ‘soulless.’  As stated in the heretical Lexicanum, “The jolly humour of Nurgle is such that they’ve remain cruelly conscious and aware of all that occurs with them, souls of victims trapped in their dead bodies and with a rictus grin they stagger out in search of living meat to feast on.”

Always good (for a Chaos God) to have a sense of humor, I guess, even (or perhaps especially?) at the expense of others.  Better than dour old Khorne, incomprehensible Tzeentch, and most especially the Dark Prince, who seems really great at first, sort of like getting to eat your favorite food and then you find out you are in hell and all you will be doing for eternity is eating your favorite food.  Makes Happy Grandfather seem pretty good by comparison.

** I was going to say “or maybe two!” but that would be sheer hubris.  Of course any good Chaos Lady would just go for it and say “It’s only hubris if you fail,” and upon failing execute any and all involved or who witnessed it, including any star systems where the populations may or may not have heard someone allude to it in a redacted transmission.  But who has time for that?  So I’ll just stick with the one.

Works Cited

Poxwalker.”  wh40k.lexicanum.com.  Lexicanum, 1 March 2018.  Web.  12 July 2019.

West, Alexis. A Taxonomic Discussion of Poxwalkers Common to the Fourteenth Legion After the Death of Pertinax up to the Ascension of Regalianus the Usurper: A Short Study. [REDACTED], 2018 CE

Spiny Back Poxwalker

I’ve been at it hammer and tongs continuing work on my poxwalkers.  I completed another one a few days ago, so I now have only five left to finish off the Dark Imperium mob of twenty.  If I pull it off, then I can put the stamp of completion on them for the complete-a-squad portion of Azazel’s March painting challenge.

We continue the tradition of orange pants/green skin.

I decided this time to go with a weapon that is fairly “fresh” in that it was freshly yanked out of some hapless rhino or perhaps an unfortunate daemon engine’s pulsing maw.  (“Open wide and say, ‘Arrraghh!'”)

I finished off the spikes with a little bright silver because I envisioned that they were freshly driven through the flamer as an afterthought, right before the random plague-marine-in-charge-of-the-group-of-poxwalkers-in-the-yellow-and/or-orange-pants sent them wandering off in search of trouble.*

I originally went for black boils because I wanted this poxwalker to be a bit muted, not quite as polychromatic as some of the others.  But I found this didn’t show up very well (or at all) so I tried gradually lighter shades of gray until I was more or less satisfied with the results.

Tried a little subtle heat shading on the flamer.

Shiny Back sort of reminds me a bit of a tyranid with its chitinous right arm, and the spines makes me think of a kroot’s spiny crest.  I hope to get the yellow-and-red twin done this weekend.  I’ve made a good start so my chances of success are pretty high.  I’ve also done a little batch work on the remaining four poxwalkers with the idea of at least vaguely threatening success at completing the squad by the end of March.

I have also gotten a little more paint on one of the Blood Bowl rotters, and I dug out an old, metal miniature that I have had sitting around for a pretty long time now.  It was a bit box find at my local Santa Cruz game store, and originally came in the same Fantasy Lords box as this guy.

Apparently my unpainted white-primed worthy below left is/was Mxomycetes, Duke of the Mire, according to the good people at Grenadier Models.  Shouldn’t be too hard to knock out and if I am able to do so, then I’ll submit our royal friend for Azazel’s genderless/gender ambiguous portion of his March painting challenge.  It’ll mostly come down to when my game store gets a pot of Dechala Lilac into my hot little hands, so we’ll see.

Still on the bench but all saying, “Put me in coach!”

I wanted to put Dave’s Blood Bowl dwarf pictures in this time and talk about the game we played, but when I downloaded the pictures from my camera and messed about with them, I found they had too many shadows and in general I didn’t like them.  We agreed to take some more the next time we got together.  So I’m not sure what the next post will bring, but with what I’m working on there is a good possibility it’ll involve more Death Guard fodder.  As for the dwarves they are currently on neglected-but-not-forgotten status. **

On a personal/non-Death Guard note, I started school this week and am working on a master’s degree in creative writing.  It is proving fun so far and I hope to learn a lot over the next couple of years.


 

*  I sent the pictures of Spiny Back to my friend, Dave, who said, “OK, so basically he has the vertical exhaust pipe from a Peterbuilt truck with spikes stuck through it.”  I like the way he thinks!  That is way more fun than saying it is “a flamer.”

** I also have a number of nature pictures, that I’ve taken in my travels, I’d like to post.  I’ve been saving them for when I’m busy with school and work and don’t have anything to post of my painting or games.

Nurgle image 125 wide