Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Progress at last!

I seem to have gone from very little painting progress to massive amounts in a very short space of time. I finally found some time to myself the other day to sit down and paint. Three hours later, I was somewhat stunned at the results.

Firstly, I managed to repaint an entire Sentinel squadron:

 These are the first of the Elysians I bought from a mate the other week. They're a unit which are going to be pulling double duty in my Ordo Xenos and 30k Militia forces, so I kept to a very simple colour scheme which could work in either era. I think they turned out really nicely considering how quickly I got through them. They're certainly not going to be winning any painting awards any time soon, but they look good and it's a really quick and easy scheme to replicate on the rest of the force. I should be tackling some infantry to go with them as soon as they've been stripped down.

The other unit I got pretty much finished was these:

That's a pair of Quad Mortars for my 30k forces. These are also going to be pulling double duty between my various 30k forces (seeing as I don't fancy shelling out £30-ish a gun so I can have them in the correct colours for each army), so with that in mind I kept them to fairly a fairly neutral gunmetal silver. Fluff-wise this can be explained by saying they were salvaged from warzones as the Heresy went on, so there wasn't time for their new owners to repaint them.

What I will be doing at some point though is painting up crewmen for them in Thousand Sons, Sons of Horus, Night Lords and Militia colours, so at least the guys manning the guns will be correctly attired. I know I don't play Night Lords, but a friend of mine does and he likes to borrow them whenever we have a game, so I figured it'd be a nice touch to have the right crew for him too.

So that's 30 painting points for me for the Sentinels, plus another 10 once I've run a wash over the base of the Quad Mortars. I didn't realise until I took photos just how much of the white under the basing sand showed through. That's easily fixed though.

Lets hope this productive streak continues! You never know, I might even be able to finish that Whirlwind Scorpius this week too.

Oh and on top of everything else, I managed to get a game in vs my local Emperor's Children player. I'll leave you with the photo I took of the exact moment it all started going wrong for my poor Thousand Sons. I need more AA...

Saturday, 1 April 2017

Whirlwind Scorpius WIP

It's been a busy few weeks for me, unfortunately very little of that activity has involved the hobby. As ever real life has been getting in the way. I have managed to make some progress on one or two things though.

In the little free time I've been able to snatch, I've been working on this:

It's the Whirlwind Scorpius for my Sons of Horus which I've been meaning to get around to repainting ever since I stripped it down about a year and a half ago. Other projects and a new job distracted me somewhat since then, but now that I'm settled into work and I'm trying to reign in and tighten my hobby focus for a while, I can hopefully turn my attention back to it for long enough to actually finish it.

To be honest, it's taken me far longer than I want to admit just to get it from the undercoat to this stage. My paint scheme for my Sons of Horus is time consuming to begin with and I really struggle to paint tanks for some reason, so that's slowing the whole process down. I'm actually starting to miss the days when I wasn't that good at painting, so could churn out whole armies in just a few months and not worry about it so much!

If I can stay focused though, I'm hoping to get the bulk of it painted this week. I've got a couple of days off coming up, so I'm hoping to use some of it to finish up the weapon system and detailing, leaving me with just the commander to get done. I've got a couple of Contemptors I want to work on for my Thousand Sons too, so hopefully I'll at least get the base colours down on them.

Anyway, I'll post more soon. I'm hoping to get back into the swing of things again blog-wise and try and get back to posting at least on a weekly basis, if not more. I'll have to see how that pans out though. I know how terrible I am at sticking to plans.

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Expanding the Mind

After the last post, I had a good think about what to do with The Wandering Mind. I don't really want to pack it all in and just move elsewhere. This blog has been part of my life for about 8 years now, so there was no way I'd just leave it to die off.

I was chatting to a friend last night who does online promotion and he suggested running the Blog alongside a Facebook page and Twitter account, with link-backs and clickthroughs and a load of technical sounding jargon which I didn't entirely take in. I think the word 'diversify' came up several times as well.

Anyway, the upshot of the conversation is that I've decided to launch a Facebook page for the Wandering Mind to run alongside the Blog, allowing me to reach out to more of the hobby community, whilst still maintaining the core blog. I'm also planning to shake up the content I'm producing a little bit, with conversion articles, battle reports and news items being weaved inbetween my usual posts about my lack of painting progress, which on reflection my posts have become a little to focussed on recently.

Those of you who are long-time readers of the Mind may remember this will take the blog back to being closer to what it used to be when I first started running it back in the heady days of 5th edition 40k. This should hopefully help keep me a little more motivated hobby-wise, as well as producing content that's a little more interesting for you guys to read too.

The Facebook page is at: , so check it out, let me know what you think of my plans and (hopefully) invite your friends to read and like it. I'm really looking forward to this new direction the Mind is about to take.

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Musings on the Mind

Looking back on my recent posts, I've realised that I haven't had a comment on any of my posts for the last six months and before that comments were really few and far between. This is a little depressing and pretty disheartening. Whilst I didn't start this blog expecting to gain a massive following, it's nice to know someone is listening and get a little feedback on what I'm doing.

This might be part of the reason why it's been so hard for me to stay focussed and see projects through to completion these days. Feedback on what I do has always been a huge motivator for me and without it, it's hard to stay 'in the zone' for hobby productivity.

I still post my stuff on Facebook groups and forums and get decent responses on there, so I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong with my blog. I think I might need to have a good think on how and where I post up my hobby projects. I'm thinking of moving everything over to social media groups.

Of course, I might still have a regular readership, they're just not commenting for some reason. If you're there, leave a comment and let  me know!

Either way, there might be big changes ahead for the Wandering Mind. Watch this space.

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Progress, Progress, Progress and a possible setback...

My painting progress is continuing at an excellent pace. As February turns into March, I've already painted more than I did in the entirety of last year, so obviously I'm very happy with how my painting points system is working out.

There is a threat to my progress on the horizon though. A friend of mine is selling some of his Elysians. They've been my dream army for a long time, but way out of my price range. This friend is selling them for a ridiculously good price though, so I can't really say no. Of course, 1500 points of Elysians will put a massive dent in my painting points total in the wrong direction. I have a plan though.

I'm going to cheat.

Well, not exactly cheat, but just start being extremely strategic in what I paint in order to offset the points which I'm about to lose. You see I have a lot of stuff which is either half finished or can be finished very quickly and easily to net me some easy points, so I'm going to focus on getting those finished up over the next couple of weeks.

These include:
  •  The two White Scars Bikers I started a few weeks back -  4 pts
  • My half-finished Corsairs unit - 20 pts
  • The Sons of Horus Whirlwind Scorpius I've had stripped for repainting for ages - 10 pts
  • 2 Dreadclaws for my Sons of Horus which have been half finished for a few years now -20pts
  • A few single characters I've been meaning to finish up, which should net me a quick 5 points each
  • My two Thousand Sons Contemptors -20pts
As you can see this will give me 80-90 points without too much effort, which should nicely offset what I'm buying. Hopefully I'll get round to painting the Elysians so quickly that it won't matter too much, but at the same time I'm aware of how easily I get distracted. I know some of you will argue that I shouldn't worry so much, but I'm taking my hobby pledges very seriously this year. Just looking at what I've managed to get done this year so far, this extra nudge of motivation is clearly doing it's job! 

So with this in mind, I started working on these guys last night:

 This guy's an idea for a Sons of Horus Lodge Master/ Chaplain/ Lupercii Chieftan I've been thinking abut for a while. The moost common comment I seem to get on him is that he looks a little too chaotic to be a Heresy-era model, but my force is set in the Siege of Terra/ Scouring era, so I think he works nicely, considering that's the point when the traitors really started to go off the rails.

He's nowhere near done yet unfortunately, but really it's just detailing and working on the base which needs to be done, so he shouldn't take too long. He's also serving as a tester for my new method of painting the green for my SoH armour. I'm rather liking the effect, especially as it's much quicker than my old method, so I'm really happy with how this chap's coming along.

On the other hand, this guy is done to the stage where I'm feeling comfortable enough to claim the points for him, once I've pianted the edge of the base. He started just as a one-off piece to make use of the Greigor Fell-Hand (or Not-Bjorn as I like to call him!) model I got in the Prospero box, but he might end up turning into a small contingent of traitor Space Wolves, as I love the concept and enjoyed painting this guy so much. That's for a point in the future when Idon't have so many unfinished models knocking about though.

I also started this guy:

I wasn't intending on making any progress on my Harlequins at all for a while, but I found the Death Jester I got in Death Masque at the bottom of my sprues box whilst I was digging around for Greigor, so I figured I might as well start on him too. Considering it only took me about half an hour to get to this stage, I'm really glad I made that choice. It's such a nice model, both in terms of looks and ease of painting. It's so nice in fact, that that my desire to get a display shelf to show off off these one-off pieces is really intensifying. I'll have to see what money I have spare after buying the Elysians I think.

I'll post more soon!

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

A day of progress

It's been a day of steady progress for me, having decided to crack on with my Tartaros Terminators and Breachers. Both performed rather well for me in my game last night, so I figured they deserve a lick of paint or two as a reward. My Breachers even earned the honour of being the first models to receive transfers from my FW Decal sheet!

As you can see, I've weathered them up a bit. Breachers without battle damage just don't seem to sit right with me. When I get around to it, I'm also going to freehand the Raptora symbol onto their shields. I wish Forge World put symbols for the various cults on their transfer sheet, but alas not.

There's another 13 of these to go, in various states of completion. I think the whole unit might take me a while, but they should look awesome when they're done.

The Terminators are in a lesser state of completion unfortunately, but I've at least managed to get the majority of the basecoats and shading done on two of them.

The Vexilla is just for show, seeing as Terminators can't take them. I originally included it as an idea on how  to show their cult allegience, but that was before I saw the legion rules in full. I was figuring that Terminators would work well as Pyrea cultists, being amongst the most aggressive of squads within the company, but after having had a play with the actual rules I'm leaning more towards the idea of running them as Raptora for the +1 to their Invunerable Save. The WYSIWYG pedant in me might just see me keep them as Pyrea though, even if they're a bit worse in-game for the switch.

Oh and before I forget, I also made a start painting these guys

I found these guys in a drawer when I was looking for my spare pot of Nuln Oil and are the main reason I don't have more Terminators painted. I've always liked the idea of running some White Scars allies alongside my XVth  Legion, as the two legions were always close fluff-wise. I'm also hoping that an allied detachment should scratch this particular hobby itch enough that I won't splurge on a full army for them!

I built these guys back in September when I managed to get a good deal on some secondhand Bikers on Ebay, with the intention of spending a month or so getting them finished. The problem came with arrival of the Burning of Prospero box, followed closely by the December 'Sons releases and the rapid approach of Inferno and they sort of just got pushed to the back of my mind. When I unearthed them though, I figured I should really get at least one squad finished, so away I went. I'm going to have to try and not let them become a full-on distraction though, as I really want to get my DE Corsairs finished soon.

A good day's progress I think. Hopefully this marks the start of a productive streak.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

Thousand Sons tweaks

I don't have much to show you today. I'vejust been putting the finishing touches to the Veterans/Tactical Squad I've been tweaking for a while.

I already claimed the painting points for these a while back, but there were just a few extra bits I wanted to finish up, like the scripture on the Sergeant's loincloth. Nothing particularly special. I'll be adding transfers later, but these are now done to the standard I want the rest of the army to reach, varnished and ready for my game against Space Wolves tomorrow. Assuming either mine or my opponent's copy of Inferno arrives in the morning, we're planning to try out the first scenario from Inferno, so it should be good fun. I'll try and get some photos, although don't expect any wonderful shots of painted models on my part, as I only have about a dozen models even partially painted for my 'Sons atm.

More soon!

Saturday, 25 February 2017

Contemptor Finished

There comes a point in every project where you have to stop being a perfectionist and actually complete some models. That's the point I've reached on my Thousand Sons Contemptor. I've been working on this guy for about a year now, tweaking and repainting him and now I've finally reached the point where I think he's about as done as he's going to be. I might go back and add some more transfers later, but for now, this will do.

This of course gives me a rather tasy bump in my painting point total, as well as bringing my total of painted models for my Thousand Sons up to six. Doesn't sound like much, but this number should rise a bit more quickly now my attention isn't being sapped by obsessing over the details on one Dreadnought.

Next up should be finishing my Veteran/Tactical Squad, then back to Fantasy to finish up my Corsairs whilst I contemplate what I want my Thousand Sons force to look like, now that we have actual Legion rules.

Monday, 6 February 2017

Thousand Sons Raptora Breachers WIP

I warned you distraction was likely:

With Thousand Sons finally getting their own 30k rules, I figured I should really get on and actually get my army painted before everyone else jumps on the bandwagon and start Thousand Sons armies, especially considering Magnus seems to be the new go-to model for cheesy Primarch shenanigans.

There's still loads to do on these guys before I'm even close to considering them finished.The main thing is adding transfers and a freehand Raptora symbol put onto their shields. The Raptora Cult Arcana gives them a rather tasty 5+ Invunerable Save at range and 4+ in combat, making them incredibly tough. I was initially leaning towards basing my army around the Corvidae, but Raptora seems to suit my style and vision for the force better.

I've got another 11 of these guys to finish, once my bits order for more Sigmarine shields arrives, plus an Apothecary and Preator to add in. After that I'm probably going to go back and finish my DE Corsairs before cracking on with the rest of my XVth Legion forces.

Lots to do, but with work being so quiet this time of year, I've got plenty of time to actually get things finished. I'll post more soon.

Dark Elf Corsairs done

Dear god(s), I have actual finished models to show you. I never thought I'd see the day...

Granted, this is only five Corsairs, but it's still a massive step up from my recent run of progress. Only 35 left to go on the unit!

The next few models might take me a little longer to finish. The news and rules coming out of the Horus Heresy Weekender have made me want to make some progress on my Thousand Sons, so distraction is a real possibility in my near future. If I can focus though, these are next:

These only have a few stages to go and they'll be done too. After that, I can turn my attention to these:

So yeah, still lots to do. Hoping to have these done by the end of February though.

Friday, 27 January 2017

Every ship needs a cat...

Just a quick one today. I wanted to show you the finished unit filler I've made:

It's the cat from the old Neferata model in the Vampire Counts range. It's had an interesting history in my collection, serving first as a Chooser of the Slain in my old Space Wolves army, then as a Focus Familiar for my Sorceress back when I first started DE. It's been sitting neglected in my bitz box for some time now, so when I was looking at ways to make my unit fillers more interesting, it seemed the perfect fit. A ship's crew needs a cat.

The fact that my regular opponent in the campaign so far is a particularly tough Skaven player just makes it's inclusion all the sweeter. Hopefully it'll help me hunt down some rats!

Thursday, 26 January 2017

Fun with magnets

No painting progress to show you today. instead I've been having a play around making magnetic movement trays.

I've been wanting to make these for a while, mostly to make transporting my armies to and from my local gaming clubs a little bit easier. I rather like the idea of having some custom cut foam to fit each unit, transporting them on their trays,  then being able to simply plonk the entire unit down on the board without having to unpack each individual model and ranking them up.

The obvious starting point was the Corsairs I'm working on at the moment. The process is quite simple really. Using the 2mm N35 disc magnets I ordered in bulk from China (£5 for 300 - bargain!), I just glued one beneath the base of each model in a regiment.

For the actual trays themselves, I bought a load of magnetic whiteboards from my local Poundworld, cut away the plastic borders, removed the cardboard backing and I had all the magnetic sheets I needed. I just had to cut them to fit a movement tray and glue them in place. Five minutes with superglue and basing sand and I had something like this:

It's very rough looking atm, but the next stage will be spraying and vanishing it. However, I  couldn't resist having a play with one of the smaller trays and the corsairs I've magnetised so far:

That should do nicely! I've yet to be able to pull the same trick with the metal models on the 50-man tray, but it doesn't matter too much. I'm not trying to play Warhammer on the ceiling, I just want to stop the models from moving around, which is what I've achieved. Plastic models on the other hand, I could probably throw around the room and they won't come off!

Anyway, this experiment has worked like a dream. I'm really happy with it and looking forward to doing the same for the rest of the units in this project.

More soon!

Dark Elves progress

Progress continues apace with my Corsairs. So much so that I'm in danger of actually winning some painting points back on my total!

I know this isn't really the best of photos, but it's the best I could manage. Working nights and a lack of natural light during my normal waking hours at this time of year means I've had to make do with the daylight bulb I use when I'm painting. I'll try and get soem better pics on my next day off.

Anyway, back to the models. They really are a joy to paint and really don't take too long per model to get to a good standard. I'd say batch-painting these twelve took me about four hours, which really isn't bad. I just need to do some highlights, pick out some details, paint their faces and add some snow flock to their bases and they're ready.

I'm so happy with them that I've already started preparing the next batch. Normally with large units, I can only bring myself to paint about ten or so before I'm bored and need to paint something else to break up the monotony. With these guys though, I'm just plowing straight on.

Here's the next 13, still being based up and converted.

Plus the beginnings of the unit fillers:

I've adding weapons and whips from the Witch Elves kit I've got knocking about, partly to take away from the limited number of sculpts available, but I also figure that if they're part of a Beastmaster force, they need to look the part. A few whips sprinkled in helped nicely with that one.

The unit fillers came about because I really love the champion models which came with the auction, but I got multiples of them. I didn't want the unit champion to look the same as any other models in the unit, but I also wanted these to use these guys 'as is' and for them to stand out. Having them on their own 2x2 bases seemed the perfect solution, as well as allowing me to bump up the size of the units I can field.

I also managed to pick up these cheap from Ebay. I really am having all the luck with hobby auctions atm:

They're cool, but I really have no idea what I'm going to use these ladies as. There's no option to field Beastmasters on foot any more unfortunately and the Beastmaster's Scourge isn't even a weapon any more! They might make some rather nifty looking unit champions for my  planned Witch Elves or perhaps some chariot crew. I'll have to have a think.

I'll post more progress soon.

Thursday, 19 January 2017

New Year Painting Progress - more Elves!

I've been managing to keep up my painting progress quite well, putting in about three hours over the last week and a half. I think what's most surprising is that I've actually been able to stick to working on one army project for three weeks in a row. This has been massively helped by the fact that I picked up one hell of a bargain on Ebay for some old metal Corsairs (I know, painting points...shhh...).

In my opinion, these guys are one of the best GW sculpts of their era, much better than the ridiculous looking plastics which followed them, as well as having far more 'grit' and character to them.  I've been wanting to pick some up for ages, but they generally go for silly prices. Naturally, when I found a listing for 30 of them for £25, I couldn't really pass up the chance to grab them.

They're such lovely models that I couldn't resist getting started on them straight away:

At the risk of overmaking my point, they're a joy to paint too. I've always struggled to get going when painting the plastics, finding the models just a little bit too cluttered and undefined in places, but these almost seem to paint themselves. I managed to get this stage in just an hour or so. The movement tray is just a temporary addition to keep them together in one place.  I'll be making a fully magnetised one to replace it later on. The other 18 need to spend some quality time with a stripping tub, so I'll probably get these initial 12 done before expanding it into the larger unit.

In case you're wondering, I haven't abandoned my previous unit. I've made a little more progress on the Executioners/Beastmasters too:

  Once I've worked out what colour I want for the edging of their chainmail, I think they'll just need a few final highlights and washes before basing and I'll be able to call this first rank done. The rest of the unit will probably have to wait until after the Corsairs are finished though.

That's all for now. I'll post more soon!

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

And away we go! - First painting post of 2017

I've actually been quite busy hobby-wise since New Year, having clocked up about 5 hours worth of painting time. Doesn't sound like much, but it's more than I managed in the last three months of 2016, plus it's more than my 'scheduled' amount from my hobby pledges, so it's a massive improvement in productivity. Unfortunately, I've been quite busy on Ebay too, so my painting points have become skewed further than they already were. I needed some Bolt Throwers for a campaign game though, so it's not like it was impulse spending. It served a purpose. That's what I'm telling myself anyway

Either way, I've decided to focus on my Dark Elves for the first part of the year. I'm doing rather badly in my club campaign atm and everybody knows unpainted models perform badly compared to their fully-painted counterparts, so it's time to fix that. Besides, eight years after starting a project and two years after the death of the game the associated with them seems quite long enough for the competion of an army to be overdue by!

Here's how my army looked on New Years day.  Excuse the bad photography. Hangover plus bad lighting didn't make for brilliant photos ...

As you can see, that's a huge amount to work on. Luckily the huge amount of casualties I took in my last game means I have a much smaller pool to focus on (silver linings and all that...). I decided to start with my Executioners/ Beastmasters:

These are about two-thirds done. I still need to add a few washes and highlights, as well as finishing the bases. Obviously this isn't the full unit. I still have about twenty more to paint, but I figured it's easier to work on a rank at a time rather than demoralising myself by trying to tackle all 25 at once.

At the same time I started work on a pair of Sorceresses. I wanted to try something a little different to my normal skin recipe for Elves/Eldar, aiming to convey the kind of unhealthy pallor which the Druchii are likely to have. Living in perpetual winter and dabbling with the unnatural doesn't tend to help the complexion...

I quite like how the skin tone has turned out, even though it could still use a little cleaning up. I'm not always the best judge of these things though, so any thoughts or comments on it are very welcome, especially as it's a new technique I'm trying. I'm still in two minds whether or not to extend this recipe to all the elves in my force or just save it for the magic users. I'll have to give it some thought.

So there you have it, all my hobby progress for the first two weeks of 2017. It's not fantastic, but it's a start. I'm hoping to get these guys done by the end of January.