After 20 years, and somewhere around 3-5 months, I no longer have a mortgage payment to make. I haven't moved, which can only mean...
I paid off the house!
Honestly I'm amazed I haven't moved in 20 years. By the time I graduated high school I figured out we had managed to move every year and a half on average. I was determined to stay put for a while. Although honestly I didn't want to go through the hassle of trying to sell the house, pack up and move to some other place, unpack, etc.
In essence, being lazy paid off my house.
On tap to celebrate this weekend is a road trip to a Birmingham Shrimp Basket with the Whitmore Clan. I think I'm supposed to be buying since I'm suddenly flush with extra available income.
A little random painting got finished! This batch of minis was "random Chronoscape just to relax and show some progress." I hereby mark that as a success! This batch of 5 non-related minis included:
As there was no reason to paint these other that "fun" and getting over the disappointment of how the last batch of minis turned out, I was in no hurry to get these painted nor had any formula or pattern of how they should look in mind. Once again I returned to my best working method of using washes as much as I could. I also thinned out the paint, a lot. Instead of using water, I remember I had thinner medium. Thinner medium is a horrible name, and I had to have 2 people explain to me as to why to use it. Thinning with water, as I've done for years, works but it's inconsistent in how it thins the paint. Thinning medium thins evenly. All paint has thinner in it. Whenever I dole out some paint and there's unmixed, usually milky/murky fluid - that's thinning medium! The color is called pigment by those that know more than me, and when you put medium with pigment and shake vigorously, you get paint. That was the explanation that stuck with me.
As I had years ago painted Chan Li, who I affectionately call Chop Saki because I've never been convicted of being politically correct, I thought I would reverse the clothing color scheme and see how my skills had improved on the new Chan Li. New Chan Li would not be called Chop Saki Jr as that's too obvious. No, he is instead Juan Tahn Soop. Chop Saki had a good skip shade - just enough of a yellow tint to look Asian. Juan - Juan ended up with a sunburn. The Pale Skin base was too white. I tried some shades of brown and orange to get away from that, but it did not go the right direction. Sunburned and dirty Juan it is, in the end.
Dr Dread, as I mentioned above, I didn't see as Dr Doom but just another robot. He started out with a yellow tunic as I was using some bits of yellow wash on other figures and the yellow wash works well on clothing and hair. After it was pointed out to me that this was really Dr Doom, I wondered how well a green wash would cover up the yellow. I've got 4 Citadel green washes/shades, and the brightest (Coleia Greenshade) covered the yellow just right. I think there may actually be some yellow highlighting that comes through in a couple spots that looks natural.
There's more shifting of numbers than what actually got done on the progress chart. Some of the "to paint" Walking Dead packs only had 2 minis instead of 3. More importantly, when calculating the percentage of what's been done, the total to calculate against should not just be what's left to paint, but also include what's been painted. You know, the TOTAL! Kind of a downer that I hadn't made almost the 50% progress that had been shown, but that always felt overly optimistic. Now I know why! Obviously, I can't do math.
After all the ups and downs of this spreadsheet since trying to keep track of my progress, I think I really am at 33% of what I want to get done completed (13% overall).
Already primed and ready to see what progress I can make over the next week or two are 9 Walking Dead minis. Now you can easily figure out how I came to find that some WD packs had 2 minis in them instead of the 3 I was used to.
After being called out by Bob for lack of content, I provide a minimum of interesting content. Interesting to me, at least.
As part of Getting Shit Done, I'm trying to dedicate an hour per night to the menial tasks needed before I do something cool. An hour per night is really turning into an hour every other night.
One of my hobby projects is to re-do my map tiles I've been using for the Walking Dead game, which will realistically serve any 28mm game that comes along. Why re-do them? I have lots of reasons!
Originally I printed my tiles at 7½" square. Why? I have no idea, that's just how the first batch I'd printed ended up sized. They were supposed to be 6". The basis for them were 7" tilesets from Fat Dragon games, but there's a 1" row missing from the end print so I know that I tweaked and resized them. 7½", while I fine and usable size, does not scale well for modularity if you want to use anything but 7½". Case in point - I want to make bigger tiles for the MDF buildings that I'm adding in. Sure, I could just use 7½" and stick multiples together, but in the long run I'm lazy and would gripe and moan every time I had to pick out the right combination of tiles to fit together for this specific building.
As such, everything is getting resized to 6".
I've oft complained/admitted to my inability to cut a straight line. The foam core the 7½" prints are adhered to show that after enough of them are lined up. This is my chance to try and compensate. Instead of cutting foam core, I'm instead planning on mounting all of this on cake boards. Lots of cake board sizes! Let somebody else cut those straight lines!
I've currently got the basic road with sidewalk graphics files complete. Next is to add in some versions with ground clutter to spice it up. Also needed is the grass (instead of sidewalk) version of each which will get glued to the opposite side. I generally take my time tweaking graphics so even though all of this could be whipped out in an hour it'll likely take me a couple of weeks.
I'm not in a real big hurry. I'm supposed to be having fun with this!
The last time I showed any minis I'd painted was Dec 30th. Close to 3 months and nothing noteworthy to show on the hobby front. Sure, I've spent most of the last 3 weeks sick. But what kind of excuse is that?
Pitifully, it's a good enough excuse for me.
To quell this pitiful trend, a batch of Reaper cowboys were primed. Why cowboys? No real reason, other than I picked up a batch of cowboys however many years ago. Maybe my zombie apocalypse will have a time travel scenario? Maybe I'll turn the whole thing into a Westworld game? Most likely, I was just tired of flipping past them in the box of Reaper minis and thought it would be a good chance to lessen some of those I flip through later.
Overall all this batch came out about average. I could have done better. I could have done worse. Painting faces under cowboy hats is hard. The details on the minis didn't really pop for me - after the fact I feel that I should have gone back and touched up little details here and there, but honestly I'm not sure what they are.
On the overall painting progress chart I'm once again farther behind than when I started this batch. Thanks to a Miniature Market birthday coupon I caught up on the Walking Dead expansions I'd been missing/putting off. For the 5 I add to the Painted list above, there's 21 Unpainted Walking Dead minis added to the list.
In addition to these minis, 4Ground Tobacconists store came together. I had some issues getting this one together. One of the door pegs broke off as I was squeezing it into place. The windows and their cardboard frames fought me. I also wasn't paying attention in the beginning and glued one of the windows in backwards to where the text is facing inside the store. The door that fought me skidded around when I wasn't paying attention, and I ended up mounting the front door in the back. There's a good chance there might be a little fire/riot damage to this building before it gets any play use.
Another random 5 minis are sitting ready to be primed now - no cowboys this time.
The rest of the week was blown off work thanks to being sick (6 days of triple digit temperature - I'm ready to be done with being sick!). I decided
that Day 7 of Sick wasn't going to be another laying around, taking naps kind of day. Time for my brain to trick my body into getting over this shit. My brain
still wasn't coherent enough to do any actual work - this was proven by the hour plus video call Tyler and I had where I think I looked at him looking at Bob's code.
Instead my goal was just to not go lay down.
I spent the morning doing random piddly computer stuff. Stuff so unimportant I can't even remember what it was, 6 hrs later. But it kept me out of bed! And oddly enough when I went to check my temperature today, it was always in the 98s. Sure, it's the day which traditionally those good drugs kick in and I start to feel better, but I'm giving my brain an assist on this one!
While I had lunch (Dominos Jalepeno/Banana Peppers: the Sinus Special!) I watched a Dock You Men Tarry on Netflix, 14 Minutes from Earth. I'd never heard of the event this covers - Google exec breaks freefall record - but I was in the mood to watch something different while I lunched and this turned interesting and entertaining enough that I watched the whole thing. With that said, it's made like really bad reality TV. Music builds the tension to what you know's going to be ok is the worse culprit. But in the interviews there was a big dose of, I'm not sure what it's normally called....
When gov't contractors band together to big on a contract, they're very complimentary to each other, calling out accolades by name. This is in actual contract proposals. Convert this to a documentary setting and then notice subtleties - who's wearing a logo of which company, for example, and it skews from documentary to attempted long form ad.
Worse, or maybe just most stereotypical, was the woman who was listed as the co-founder of Paragon DSC. When she talked, it was like she didn't know she was responsible for/involved in some of these life threatening decisions, and she was in unbelievable awe that any of this was actually happening. Later, during a record breaking moment, she's texting and completely misses what's happening. I wonder if this is why she's not listed anywhere on the current Paragon website?
Now to take it easy for the rest of the night. But not too easy, my brain is still in charge of my body and my body has to listen!
I'm in an odd mood to watch Moonraker though....
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!).
Tags have been added to posts back to 2005. There may be an occasional old blog that gets added to the tag list, but in reality what could be noteworthy from that far back?
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