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Hi all,

 

The new Age of Sigmar (nee Warhammer Fantasy Battle) starter box came out a week or so ago, and I've been spending my evenings since then building the (many!) models contained within. All in all there are 52 miniatures in the box, split about 3/5 between the "Nighthaunt", i.e. spooky ghosts, and 2/5 "Stormcast Eternals" who are seven foot tall superhuman foot knights. I'm intending to paint the ghosts first as they're really cool, a blend of previous Warhammer ghosts and quite a lot of Peter Jackson & co's take on the Ringwraiths.

 

Here are the ghosts in question:

 

42638728824_70116625d8_b.jpg

(click for bigger)

I've cleaned up all the parts, assembled them and filled the (minimal) seams, plus made a start on basing so many of them are ready for primer. I need to pin a spindly arm that I broke on the tall thin one, otherwise they were a pleasure to build. Some of the duplicate models (the big horde of 20 little ghosts in the background) have been converted a little, I'll take some pics to show that when I get to them. I also added a signpost to the executioner's base (the one with the gibbet) since it was rather "boingy" held up by one strand of plastic ectoplasm.

 

Their opponents are also made up, these are the Stormcast Eternals in their fetching robes as they're now more magical than ever before. The guy on the griffon is particularly good, as is the woman with the outstretched arm.

 

28486213407_e981e75ae2_b.jpg

 

They're quite big next to the ghosts, they're mostly on 40mm bases, whereas the ghosts with scythes and polearms above are on 32mm. As appears to be the new norm for GW starter sets they're all fixed-pose models, generally with 1-4 parts each. That can mean things look a bit flat, but I think they've mostly avoided that although on the Stormcast there are some filled-in undercuts. I've opened some of these but not been too zealous about it.

 

I also picked up some very cool extra ghost supplies - more of the sinister polearm ghosts (Glaivewraith Stalkers) plus some excellent floaty Banshees:

 

42451533545_eb1f540d6d_b.jpg

29485356988_90c6a00cfa_b.jpg

 

These have lovely moulded bases with lots of appropriate graveyard-ey details, past efforts from GW in that regard have been excellent:

 

38254753701_34b7c81299_b.jpg

 

Oh yes, and I can't forget the box of ambulatory predator spells which I failed to resist - there are quite a few of those:

 

29485361378_b9c42d104c_b.jpg

42638736454_1051aa5394_b.jpg

 

some of which are really quite big:

 

43355429371_bcbfceff9a_b.jpg

 

Cleaning up all the mould lines (in GW's slightly harder "scenery made in China" plastic) on all the trailing magical stuff was quite an exercise but I did get it all done in the end.

 

So that's where I'm at at the moment. In terms of colour schemes, I think I'd like the ghosts to pick up the ones I painted a few years ago:

 

14919650534_e6e37a055a_b.jpg

 

but with bases that fit with my skeletons:

 

40547721441_76706283f9_b.jpg

 

I'm intending to re-base the existing ghosts onto appropriate rounds since I think they look a lot better than the old WHFB square bases. Hopefully I can clip them into shape, glue to rounds and re-scenic the edges of the new bases to match the rest of the models.

 

Hopefully get some priming and painting happening this weekend, depending on how the basing progress goes!

 

Cheers,

 

Will

 

 

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Following with interest, Will. I've never really gotten into this fantasy wargaming thing, but the figures and the terrains produced by GW etc I find fascinating.

 

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Thanks Clive, I don't really play either but I like the idea of having a coherent collection of models. And who knows, pressure is mounting from various friends & family to actually start rolling dice... My daughter and I did in fact play through the 40K starter set scenarios earlier in the week, and verily it was fun even with unpainted figures :)

 

I did a tiny bit more basing yesterday, adding brown stuff and grit to the base of the big horse:

 

42695636994_bf1fd9f063_b.jpg

 

(which also got chunks of slate and a resin skeleton from an old GW basing set) and to half of the smallest ghosts - the Chainrasp Horde. I've based ten of the twenty so far.

 

43411983631_702617dbd3_b.jpg

This also shows some of the tiny conversions I did to these models. They have two identical sprues of ten, so I've swapped some weapons and things over, and removed a few of the moulded grave stones to use on other figures. It's not a big difference but hopefully it'll create some variety.

 

I also took pics showing clean-up work on the split shoulder pads on the Stormcast figures. They're not amazing but I think a coat of primer and a rub with a fine-grit sanding sponge and they should be good to go.

 

41604370860_5194ac1bae_b.jpg

Cheers,

 

Will

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Lol I once harboured a small hope that my dear daughter might discover the joys of model making, through playing the original Hero Quest. She ended up just painting the figures, which to be fair looked pretty good, but sadly that hope was not to last. Interestingly, she still talks about that experience in a positive way, so you never know! I dare say having 2 kids of her own is fairly effective in suppressing the desire to return to it at the moment though.

 

These new figures are on another level, it must be said!

 

Looking forward to seeing how they develop!

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2 hours ago, clive_t said:

I once harboured a small hope that my dear daughter might discover the joys of model making, through playing the original Hero Quest

There's something magical about that game :) This is probably the first Warhammer figure I ever painted, a Heroquest skeleton:

20251593058_a3825b606b_b.jpg

 

And since I kept most of the figures these thirty years, it was the first one my daughter painted as well. I can't find a good pic of hers but I have a shot of her painting:

 

9125720242_e5f571b534_b.jpg

 

That's already a few years ago, time flies!

 

Will

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Nicely done! You've got me thinking of all my as yet untouched HQ figures, could be a nice little collection of mules for practicing painting techniques :) Maybe I will end up displaying them, who knows! Great to see a youngster getting into something creative like that too, thanks for sharing :thumbsup2:

 

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I've based the remaining chainrasps now:

 

43409063472_a5825ac5ca_b.jpg

 

and also repaired the Guardian of Souls, whose arm I broke while pushing his body halves together. I tried butt joins earlier with both solvent and CA but the surface was too small, so I've ended up inserting a 0.4mm nickel silver wire pin. I didn't get the holes perfectly aligned but I think I've mostly smoothed out the arm:

 

42741138004_50d629a86a_b.jpg

 

He is exceptionally creepy so I'm glad he's fixed up! The base got a couple of extra bits of ectoplasm I'd removed from the chainrasps earlier.

 

I also built up the set of objectives, which are basically seven little scenic vignettes. They're part of the made-in-China scenery range but they're almost as good as the Nottingham stuff. The plastic is a bit harder though, so cleaning up all the gears and racks on the orrery-thing was a pain!

43409060252_83c8192e04_b.jpg

 

I've left the treasure-chest bottoms loose so I can paint the contents, and I haven't yet filled the side seams, which are pretty obvious and will need attention.

 

Lastly I built a little Necromancer to raise up my skeletons - he's an older plastic character from 2010 but fit beautifully and is full of attitude:

 

42741140584_b17337c461_b.jpg

 

He has rather a dramatic spiked collar (I think to tie him into the vampire aesthetic) but I've left that off. It means his neck is a bit scrawnier, but I'm OK with that.

 

Excuses remaining about primer are getting smaller, so hopefully will do that soon. I was intending to spray on Sunday but it was such a nice day I ran an impromptu half-marathon on the waterfront instead :)

 

Cheers,

 

Will

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6 hours ago, Will Vale said:

I was intending to spray on Sunday but it was such a nice day I ran an impromptu half-marathon on the waterfront instead

My Sunday was more or less the same Will. Actually, almost entirely less, but I did walk briskly to the freezer for a Cornetto at one point. I like to think that puts us on a semi-equal footing.

 

Have you seen the Mierce wraiths? They'd fit in rather well with the Nighthaunt figures. This one's my favourite, mainly because he's named Colin.

 

Andy:cat:

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3 hours ago, AndyRM101 said:

but I did walk briskly to the freezer for a Cornetto at one point. I like to think that puts us on a semi-equal footing.

:lol:

 

My first figure was a Skeleton too.....FTS-5.2 From the Citadel Miniatures FTS range:

 

http://www.collecting-citadel-miniatures.com/wiki/index.php/Skeletons_-_FTS_Fantasy_Tribe_(solid_base)

 

FWIW

 

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51 minutes ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

My first figure was a Skeleton too.....

Nagash has quite the influence :)

 

4 hours ago, AndyRM101 said:

but I did walk briskly to the freezer for a Cornetto at one point. I like to think that puts us on a semi-equal footing.

That's how I wanted to end up but it was too cold for ice-cream by the time I got back and all the coffee places were shut :( I hoovered up calories when I got home though.

The Mierce figure looks great, aesthetically a good match except that his skirt is full rather than ending in wispy bits. I hadn't really twigged how good the names are before - after Colin, Buggrom of Ulmo is rather fine. I also found an excellent category called "drinking companions" :D

 

Will

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3 minutes ago, Will Vale said:

Nagash has quite the influence :)

Huh?  :shrug:

 

Harryhausen would have been my primary influence at the time.  ;)

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Sorry, GW-centric joke. Nagash is the god of undeath and source of much trouble in the current storyline.

At the moment he looks like this:

99120207029_DeathLordsNagashSupremelordo

GW store link

 

but in the good old days he was more... special. I can't find an official image but there's a pic of his nineties incarnation here:

 

History of Nagash

 

Anyway, I did do some priming today, with a dozen or so ghosts in Alclad Grey with Alclad Black on the bases. I've just been going through and doing some post-primer cleanup and fluff removal so I'll need to touch up tomorrow before starting on the topcoat. Hopefully I wrote down the recipe for the ghostly green - pretty sure I used Tamiya acrylics last time around, although I'm intending to involve their clear paints for glazing this time.

 

Cheers,

 

Will

 

 

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Subtle & understated in the usual GW way.  ;)

 

Beautifully painted though.....I take it that's one of yours?  :shrug:

 

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17 hours ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

Beautifully painted though.....I take it that's one of yours?  :shrug:

You've got to realise that it all hinges on the magnificence of your hat. Big hat = Ultimate Power. And sadly no, not one of mine, that's the studio model used on the box art. I haven't dared paint Nagash yet!

 

So yesterday afternoon I put some primer on some ghosts:

 

29610599548_64c12b7b5c_b.jpg

42576923585_343e601a08_b.jpg

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and yesterday evening I picked off various bits of lint or plastic swarf, sanded down some rough bits with a 1000 grit sponge (including the base edges) and filled a couple of tiny seams with CA. I need to touch up the grey primer then I guess I need to start painting! The plan is to go with Tamiya IJN Green and Yellow-Green, followed by some brush work and then glazes with Tamiya Clear Yellow and Clear Green. We'll see.

 

Cheers,

 

Will

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It was clear that I was avoiding adding colour to these (which usually means that I'm not sure what colours to use) as I cleaned and tidied the office and my modelling area before eventually relenting and sitting down with the airbrush. I picked two Tamiya colours to give the shadows and mid-tones for the incorporeal parts of the ghosts, JN Green and Yellow Green.

 

29630314208_f87270ae44_b.jpg

41693275060_7e4c7a2183_b.jpg

 

Not *super* exciting yet, but I think they'll come to life with some bright cream highlights and some different colours on the uppermost robes, which I'm going to paint as though they're real fabric animated by the ghost. Maybe dark grey or dark brown?

 

I've applied this to all the reapers, five of the chainrasps and a couple of characters, after that the moisture was building up in the compressor and I had to take a break. I'll see about doing some brushed highlights tonight to take these a bit further.

 

41693291000_54e650b3e5_b.jpg

 

Oh yes, and I gave them all a coat of X-22 Clear after taking these pics, so that the paint would be a bit more robust since I'm quite clumsy and tend to drop things :(

 

Cheers,

 

Will

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Nice colour choice Will. I much prefer the green tones to the ice blue look that GW always seem to use for ghost figures.

 

Andy:cat:

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On 13/07/2018 at 18:09, clive_t said:

I've never really gotten into this fantasy wargaming thing, ...

 

Me neither. But these guys look awesome. Combined with your excellent photos it really makes me want to see more.

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15 hours ago, AndyRM101 said:

Nice colour choice Will. I much prefer the green tones to the ice blue look that GW always seem to use for ghost figures.

Thanks Andy, there's a bit more variety in the ghost hues this time around in the studio models, including some which blend from almost black through blue-greens and yellow-greens to that blue-grey, which looks pretty good. I'm happy with my glow-in-the-dark look but I might have to do something different (grey and red?) for the banshees since they have a slightly different aesthetic with more defined dresses rather than loose robes.

 

8 hours ago, Svedberg said:

it really makes me want to see more.

Thanks, I did a bit more last night, adding some shading and highlights to a selection of the simplest ghosts:

 

43469489042_d5dab971b1_b.jpg

 

I added Drakenhof Nightshade to the upper edges of the ectoplasm where it meets the robes and blended it down with a damp brush, then did some edge highlighting with Ogryn Camo, Ushabti Bone and Pallid Wych Flesh on the very ends.

 

The robes are blocked in with Dryad Bark to see how it might look, and the hands have had a heavy wash of Nightshade, but I'm still not sure about them. On the spirit hosts I glazed the hands blue where they were more corporeal and holding physical blades. But these ghosts have robes with sleeves so there's more of a distinction between hands/arms and the rest. I might try some blue-grey highlights and a blue glaze, I don't think I want to start with a different base colour there, but to work up from the same base as the ectoplasm.

 

I also need to sort out that bit of dried wash between the fingers, and think about how to deal with the skulls. Quite a lot of the models have them, and if I paint them as skulls it'll help tie in to my skeletons, but I don't know if it should be a physical thing or a spectral thing?

 

41708530880_032e9cea04_b.jpg

 

Also wondering about glazing with Clear Orange on the tips of the ectoplasm to reinforce the warm/cold hue shift and help blend the highlights?

 

Cheers,

 

Will

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What about using a really vivid lime green for the highlighting rather than a pale hue.....Go for the Scooby-Doo ghost effect?  :hmmm:

 

images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQ1C1SFXNsfOoJ9BWEDdb_

 

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9 hours ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

really vivid lime green

That certainly is vivid. Ewww! (I really dislike lemon yellow and I'm not wild about lime green!)

 

It did cross my mind - it's similar to what I did on the earlier ghosts, which have cream highlights glazed over with a yellow-green mix. From what I can see of what I've done so far on the new ones, I like the blue->yellow gradient in parallel with the dark->light gradient, and I think lime green would lose that a bit?

 

I've done some more work today on various bits of the chainrasps, they're getting closer! 

 

28634649667_720a1e2814_b.jpg

 

I started by painting blue-grey (Celestra Grey) highlights onto the hands, which were rather blotchy and ugly to be honest, so I tidied up with glazes of Loren Forest (a cool-ish green). This went back and forth a bit and ended up looking OK once glazed with Guilliman Blue. It's stronger in the photos than reality, which is odd as I was painting in daylight. I think I can shortcut this dramatically by airbrushing a little white or maybe cockpit green on the hands and then just using the wash and maybe glaze to achieve the desired result?

 

I also drybrushed the cloth with Baneblade Brown and a bit of Ushabti Bone, then washed it heavily with Nuln Oil (black) and Reikland Fleshshade (Chestnut) before edge-highlighting with Zandri Dust and spots of Ushabti Bone. It's not quite there yet, mainly because some of the highlights are too thick, but it looks better at the back. I'm thinking I need to edge up against the edges in black-brown, and probably glaze over everything with chestnut or red to get the colour and contrast levels right?

 

42617026715_f16001e2f3_b.jpg

 

The edge highlighting isn't particularly realistic, but I suppose it looks a bit like wear, and it does boost the perceived contrast where the dark ectoplasm tucks into the dark robes by having a bright line in between.

 

The skulls are Zandri Dust with washes of Seraphim Sepia and Agrax Earthshade, they're rather WIP at the moment. And the bases and weapon hafts are Baneblade Brown.

 

I also base-coated all the metal with black. Surprisingly given the interactions between the ectoplasm and the ghost-chains it wasn't that hard to get to with a long (10mm+) rigger brush and thinned Abaddon Black, although the right-hand ghost in the first picture was a complete pain - it has a chain all the way up to the collar, which is right at the inside-back of the body! Maybe a heavy blackwash on the interior would've been a better idea?

Anyway, with the black on it I don't have to be quite so neat with the metal colours later, which should help. Not much left to do apart from the faces and bases before I can varnish them! Although there are 15 more of the little buggers in primer...

 

Cheers,

 

Will

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Did a bit more yesterday evening, focusing on the cloth, bases and faces:

 

28649140527_9964fb3e4b_b.jpg

 

I thinned and softened the edge highlights on the cloth with a mix of black and Agrax, and then glazed various areas with thinned Squig Orange, mainly around the creases and edges. I used the dark mix to deepen the folds a bit.

 

42631742945_e89c0c8a37_b.jpg

 

The faces had a highlight of Ushabti Bone and another of Pallid Wych Flesh, and I used Zandri Dust and Agrax to soften these. I also darkened the eye sockets with Agrax, and painted a little Athonian Camoshade on the undersides of the jaw and into the cheekbones.

 

The bases use the same recipe as the skeletons and will get some greenery soon.

 

I think that's quite a big improvement and they're almost ready for some matt varnish :)

 

Cheers,

 

Will

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Getting better and better...

 

I must ask you something about your photos. How do you get rid of the background? I think that really makes the figures stand out.

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Thanks :)

 

On ‎7‎/‎21‎/‎2018 at 7:34 PM, Svedberg said:

How do you get rid of the background? I think that really makes the figures stand out.

I use a translucent white plastic storage crate on the window sill as a photo booth, with only natural light so the pictures are all backlit (although I have a white plastic sheet I use to reflect light onto the models so they're not too dark). That gets the background largely brighter than the models, which is really important, and I usually expose to just avoid clipping it. That does about 85% of it, and the rest is adjustments in Lightroom.

I've used three approaches for that:

 

* Masking the background and tweaking the level of it (hard work)

 

* Sliding the white point slider until the background clips (easy, but the clipping increases saturation which has to be compensated for afterwards.)

* Using the curve to clip the histogram - setting a curve point at 100% just to the left of the "background" part of the RHS of the histogram, and another to make the rest of the curve linear again.

I currently think the last one works the best and is very easy to do. It's more targeted than using the white point slider so there are fewer problems with saturation. If you're a Lightroom user I can make some screenshots to show the details if that would help?

 

NB: The main problem with this approach is that if objects are very pale and/or reflective, they can clip at the same time as the background. I usually process the background as usual in this case, and paint a small adjustment to the exposure or white point of the problem areas to bring them just under the clipping point. That happened to the Pallid Wych Flesh pot in this pic, since it's both pale and translucent.

43469489042_d5dab971b1_b.jpg

Cheers,

 

Will

 

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Thanks a lot WIll! I think I understand most of it, except for "the RHS of the histogram". What does that mean?

And what does this method really do, letting it achieve what "sliding the slider" does not?

 

I am not a Lightroom user but I tested the white slider thing in Microsoft Photo Gallery, and it worked exactly as you described it, including the increased saturation. Big surprise 😁 But on a serious note, I might actually try that for real since it was super easy. To use a  translucent storage crate as a photo booth is also a great idea which I need to test.

 

Once again, thanks a lot.

 

Lennart

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7 hours ago, Svedberg said:

except for "the RHS of the histogram". What does that mean?

And what does this method really do, letting it achieve what "sliding the slider" does not?

Right-hand side - there'll be a block of high values there representing the background.

I might be fooling myself and it makes no difference! Although I did an A/B test just now trying to achieve the same clipped area, and the white slider brightens the non-white areas of the picture more, and seems to increase the saturation slightly more as well. Maybe it's having a bit more control over the curve, or at least where it starts, that matters?

 

Will

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