Zombies and Animals


My skill level for miniature painting is definitely Game Table. My minis look ok from about 3 feet away. I have friends that paint much better than I do, and they motivate me to be better, but I ain't nowhere near as good with intricate details as they are. But I don't let that keep me from painting. I enjoy my non-computerized hobby.

The first half of this month got 12 more minis painted. Since Walking Dead's Rick on a Horse only had 2 minis (Rick and horse are molded together on the base, so I count them as 1 + the zombie that came with them) I added in one of the Chronoscape minis to round out the batch. Thanks to Rick's Horse and Ezekial having a tiger, I painted my first animals that I can ever remember. Appropriately, I'm not too sure how my paint schemes for those animals match anything realistic as I used plenty of reference painting pics and there was a pretty good range of detail in those. As it was, I tried stopping before I screwed things up too much.

Things I learned this time.

With my focus on Walking Dead minis, this gets us to:

Ever so close to wrapping up the Walking Dead stuff. 18 of the remaining 24 are the 3 big rules expansions. Once all of those are done, if I can get them painted before the next wave of minis is released, I'm going to return to the MDF buildings and try a test to see if I can print exterior details for the commercial buildings like I did for the interior of the last house. This will help make up for my MDF-painting limitations, plus with the help of Paint Shop Pro I could really get in some details that I wouldn't be able to properly paint. But that's all for another time.

Here's the latest hobby spreadsheet update!

gaming miniatures

January Hobby Update


I was off to a slow start on the hobby front in January. The first shotgun house from 4Ground took longer than I thought it would to put togehter, because of course I had to try to do everything the hard way. While the outside of the 4Ground buildings are colored, the interior is just MDF. I had it in my mind to add wallpaper - I could do this with my trusty Paint Shop Pro! I also wanted to add glass to the windows. Glass, which is really the clear paper used in overhead transparencies.

The interior and exterior walls of the house are 2 pieces. Originally I was planning on sandwiching the transparency paper/window between the wallpaper and MDF wall. The transparency is thin enough that it fits between the inner and outer MDF flush enough that it doesn't bow the MDF or require any sanding - I checked, and even started a test sanding just in case. I scanned the walls and used this as a template in Paint Shop Pro to lay out my wallpaper.

Turns out my scanning process was one of those overkill areas. using the scan as my template for the wallpaper left a little white space around window and door frames. Looking back, just using the wallpaper texture of the whole area and then cut out the holes for windows and doors after gluing the wallpaper on would work just as well. Just be sure to do this part before gluing the inner and outer walls together. It should be easier to get into the windows with a razor blade to cut away what's needed that way.

Following the 4Ground directions I was armed with super glue, clothes pins, and rubber bands to hold everything together. It worked amazingly well. 48 years old before I went out and bought myself clothes pins ($1.88/100 at Wal Mart). I dry fit everything before gluing and it paid off a couple of times when I was about to put the wrong slot A into slot B. It didn't pay off when I didn't pay attention to the 2 roof pieces and glued the interior supports to the OUTSIDE of the roof panels. I didn't recognize this until the glue had set well. I could have tried to fix it, but I didn't trust pulling things apart to not break something along the way. In the end I found a nice roof shingle texture and jsut printed out a sheet full of shingles to glue to the roof. It fits right in with the PlastCraft houses that I've already made. My residential section now has 3 houses!

On the figure front I stuck with Walking Dead minis. Morgan (with son Duane and zombie wife) and Maggie & Arnold (with random zombie) were the first WD minis I've painted since November. My detail skill was lacking on this batch and things just weren't clicking. Skin tones weren't looking right. The paint was either too thick or too runny. Sometimes you have to admit when things aren't going right, but I didn't want to give up or start over. If ever there was a time for "board quality", where things look ok from 3 feet away, this would be the time to take that. And take that I did.

Roughly halfway through the mess of the above, I went ahead and primed a "prone figures" pack of 6 minis. I was expecting all of these to be zombies, but a half didn't have the zombie-holes that mark most ofthe WD figures as zombies. I ended up doodling with these while messing with the first batch above. As my specialty is normally washes, I applied different washes to the prone minis, playing around with colors and seeing what might and might not work. It was a nice little test. If nothing else these minis are a lot more colorful than the route I usually take.

By the time the first batch of minis were based and sealed, the prone batch was ready for basing. Basing these was just adding some grass flock as there wasn't too much free room on the base thanks to the prone figure taking up so much space!!! A day later these were sealed and done.

Thanks to a clerical error in my spreadsheet, my original counts for what was left to paint were off. In the Walking Dead group of minis, now I've got

The next batches are already started. Ezekial, with a tiger, and Chris & Julie are mostly finished. The batch after that I just primed today and includes Rick on a Horse. I have no idea how to paint Rick on a Horse. This should be interesting. Frustrating. And interesting.

As I like organization and the good use of a proper use, which I learned in no small part thanks to my hetero life partner, here's my updated summary spreadsheet. Green rows are minis I want to/am likely to paint and play with. Orange rows have a low probability of being worked on (but I actually liked painting those Dust figures when I was getting started, so you never know). Red rows have the least chance of getting painted. Am I really ever going to paint 600 Zombicide minis?

gaming miniatures

Old School <> Streaming


Back in the days when tv stations had numbers, tvs had knobs, and nothing could be watched on demand, the local Fox station (which was and may still be channel 54) would theme a block of movies on Saturday/Sunday afternoons if there were no weekend sporting events going on. A batch of 3 action or sci-fi movies was common. They were never the best movies, but if it weren't for watching during the weekend I may never have learned I actually liked the Robert Urich space epic Ice Pirates.

As most know I have plenty of movies taking up shelf space. I've got more than a handful purchased since Black Friday that I've not yet watched. My whole reason for buying movies has always been "when I'm in the mood to watch (whatever movie) I don't want to bother with going out and renting it, I want to just pick it up, put it in the player, and start watching." My penchant for buying physical discs doesn't hold as much merit these days since it's admittedly easier to just click a button to stream said movie, but a habit started in 1989 is hard to break. The supplementary reason for buying movies instead of renting them is that I will often watch a movie more than once. Back in the video rental days, if I watched a movie 3 times it was more cost effective to buy it than rent it. These days I've been training myself to wait for a good sale on a movie than rushing out and buying when it's initially released.

Enough of that rambling tangent. I still like movies I've seen plenty of times. Part of me misses the days of turning on channel 54 and finding "Hey, these are some good movies they've decided to show today". To the chagrin of my old boss when I was working at the video store, I would often leave the tv on 54 on Sunday afternoon that play movies to tempt people to rent - but it still worked, people would rent what they saw playing on broadcast tv anyway. The other day Spaceballs popped into my head for some unknown reason. Well that would be a fine movie to watch. Spaceballs was not present in my movie collection. I could stream it for free on Hulu. I could rent it for $3 on Amazon, or buy the digital version for $10. Instead of any of that, I bought the disc for $10 and had to wait for it to be delivered. Saturday, sandwiched between Wonder Woman and Spiderman: Homecoming, I watched Spaceballs. While not one of those channel 54 weekend movie blocks, it was still a good batch of movies to watch together.

Next weekend it may be time to revisit Ice Pirates.

movies/tv/dvd random

A lotta painting to do.


Part of my resolution(s) for the new year is to not get as much crap. I've got a lot of crap. I like getting crap, for whatever reason. The "getting" has often been the peak of my experience, ignoring "what to do after it's been gotten". Over the last year I noticed, or maybe concentrated, on my hobbies getting narrowed down to things that I both enjoy and don't feel overwhelmed by. The main constructive hobby I enjoyed was prepping for board games. Games that I don't necessarily play.

I have a lot available to paint. 2166 unpainted minis. That's a lot. If I were to paint 1 per day, I'd be finished in 2023. Those are just the 28mm scale figures. There are still different scale minis for other games - Team Yankee (1:100 vehicles), space stuff (Star Trek Call of Duty, Firestorm Armada) - who knows if I'll ever get around to painting any of that, honestly.

I'd told myself before I was going to concentrate on painting what I've got. I spent the weekend going through what I've got. I found minis that I'd forgotten I'd ever gotten. Some of them I can't see ever using. Why would I need 600 Zombicide minis? I played 2 games of Zombicide and didn't really care for it. Sure, I can use the minis for other games... but 600???

Making a list of what I've got to paint, as well as what's been painted so far, helps put things into perspective. Mainly, I have enough shit to paint for a long, long time, and with that in mind I have no need to get anything else that needs painting for the next half-decade minimum.

Except for the Star Trek Adventures game, once the miniatures start coming out. Those I can get. I mean, it's Star Trek. How could I not get them?

Next up will be to prioritze some of what I've got to paint. Some of those found minis would be useful in Walking Dead/Batman boardscape I'm constructing in the background. Cops, for example. I found batches of police from 3 companies - and who can't use more police in the world I'm creating? Nobody, that's who.

gaming miniatures hobbies



The final batch of minis painted for the year were a batch of Reaper Chronoscape figures that have been sitting on the shelf for a while. A 3 pack of Townsfolk (Chick, Jock, and Nerd) along with Deputy Wayne Tisdale and Dr Thomas Welby gave me a little break from zombies and zombie fighters. Out to try something a little different this batch was primed grey instead of my normal route of white. This served as a chance to see how the washes that I've come to enjoy would react to the darker undercoat. Turns out it made a bigger difference that I thought.

From a distance, or typical game table play distance, this batch turned out ok. I didn't even try to paint eyes (curse those eyes!). These also served as my first attempt at filling in bases with putty (Milliput). After my attempt YouTube showed me a couple of tips I should have used - mainly wetting my finger to smooth things out.

This batch served as a little change of genre that I needed. Next up is a combination of more Walking Dead minis and the first of the 4Ground Shotgun Houses. I'm putting forth a little extra effort on the house. We'll see, probably over the course of the next month at the rate I'm likely to go, if that effort makes any difference.

gaming miniatures

Blog Archive

As always, correct spelling is optional in any blog entry. Keep in mind that any links more than a year old may not be active, especially the ones pointing back to Russellmania (I like to move things around!).

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