It’s been a while since I’ve posted a painting update, partly because I haven’t been painting much. A little while ago a cyclist crashed into me (entirely his fault) and I badly broke one finger. Sadly the finger will never work quite as well as before and has to be splinted for a couple of months, which has made many activities quite annoying for me. Happily it was on my off-hand and wasn’t the index finger.
It’s taken me a little while to get used to painting with that annoyance and to generally get back into the habit after a break (hahah).
But I’m very pleased to say I’ve finished painting a model which I started about two years ago and had made a resolution to finish this month; the Drake Gearstrider by Dream Pod 9 (available from Dream Pod 9 if you’re in the New World, or from Shiny Games by request if you’re in the EU).
Here’s a model I finished this week. It’s a Fusilier Hovertank for NuCoal in Heavy Gear. The body is in the same dark grey as my other NuCoal tanks, but I wanted to do something special for the hover nacelles – partly because I thought it would look cool, and partly because NuCoal have better access to genuine hover technology than most Terra Novan nations so it would make sense for them to want to show it off! I went with a sky blue scheme and I’m really happy with how it turned out.
I’ve been doing some more painting for my Southern Republican honour guard. Now in the backstory the honour guard was made up of Fer de Lances, Gilas, and the occasional King Cobra. But with the Legion Republique becoming a legitimate military unit prior to the Second War for Terra Nova, they would clearly need to bolster their numbers with other gears. I’ve found mention of the Sidewinder being very popular, probably because of its similarity to the Fer de Lance, but also because it was made during the pilot-safety era of gear construction.
This is something it has in common with the much more recent Diamondback design and I figured my SRA honour guard would be more than happy to field some. The only issue is the Diamondback is a little plain looking, having no ‘ears’ or crests for me to paint white. So I decided to spruce it up a bit with some 3rd party crests!
Over the last few years I have suffered from clinical depression. For a while it was very severe and it was difficult to do any of the things I would normally enjoy. During this period one of the things that helped me cope was taking up painting miniatures, something I hadn’t done since I was a pre-teen. The active but somewhat mindless state I could get in while painting helped me to relax a bit and even if I wasn’t capable of enjoying myself, I felt like I was doing something I had been meaning to do for years and at least being a little creative.
Sometimes it was too hard to do any painting and I have to thank my best friend Olaf, co-author of this blog, for always encouraging me and reminding me that it helped.
I’m doing a lot better these days than I was then, but I still find I succumb to “painter’s block” for long periods – I feel unable to actually start painting, even though I keep making plans to do so. “This weekend I’ll definitely get my paints out of the box” I’d say, then find some reason not to. I’m fond of telling people “try doing something for 5 minutes and then letting yourself stop if you want”. It’s good advice for overcoming mental blocks, but it’s also very hard advice to follow sometimes.
Anyway yesterday I overcame the block and actually painted a miniature, the fancypants Fer de Lance of the Southern Republic, from Heavy Gear Blitz by Dream Pod 9. If history is any guide then I’ll probably paint several more in the coming weeks/months, and it will be as therapeutic as it always has been.
Been painting up another obsolete old model for my mercenary compagnie in Heavy Gear Blitz. This time it’s the Rattlesnake which was an early strike gear, faster and lighter than a Jager and, crucially, armed with a medium rocket pack (MRP) rather than the light rocket pack of similar cheap gears (or even the Black Mamba strike gear!).
The Rattlesnake doesn’t have any stats in the Living Rule Book, but I will be posting stats up on the blog so others can add it to their game.
I’m pretty happy with how he came out. I think it’s clear my painting style is slowly moving toward higher contrast models with more variation in shade, but more gradual transitions
I’ve been doing some more painting, this time of an old Tactical era King Cobra model I got super, super cheap from well known French gaming site Ludik Bazar. Now the model itself I would consider quite a bit worse than the excellent modern Blitz era metal King Cobra – the key differences are that the pose is very static, the weapons are smaller, there’s a little less detail, the stylised look of the Heavy Gear illustrations aren’t really captured, the shoulder rocket pack is different/worse, the hands are normal sized rather than the massive an iconic manipulators, the artillery rocket system is missing entirely, and there are no ears at all!
Still for the price they were a bargain and with some modifications (modded artillery rockets, newer mortar, modified cut down rotary cannon, a pair of old tac era knife blades stuck on as ears and a few other minor changes) I think the model ended up looking pretty good.
Here he is without his weapons (both hands are magnetised). Click on for plenty more pics.
I recently got an order from the excellent UK miniature store Shiny Games – the sole UK distributor of Heavy Gear Blitz miniatures. I highly recommend the store – it has very good customer service and is quick to post, plus the guy who runs it is clearly a gamer himself.
In fact the reason for this post is that the order came with a little note from the manager of Shiny Games saying he looked forward to seeing a Bobcat gear painted, which spurred me into action.