How do you explain it?
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Thread: How do you explain it?

  1. #1

    Default How do you explain it?

    How do you explain your hobby to people who have no idea what you are doing?

    This comes up for me often. Most recently while I had jury duty I took a mini and some paints and was painting while waiting in the jury lounge. One of the other members of the jury pool asked me what I was working on.

    I usually start out by asking if they are familiar with Role Playing, D&D or tabletop wargames. Then I explain that some of these games use figures to represent the story being told. I take the figures, which are either plain metal or plastic, modify them a little to make them more to my liking, then paint them with as fine detail as I can as a sort of artistic expression and a technical challenge to myself.

    Of course, if they don\'t know anything about the games, I\'m at a bit of a loss.

    Do you have a standard speech to explain the hobby? Do you go into explaining the games or just keep it at a minimum - I like to paint small sculptures to make them appear as real as possible for example?

  2. #2
    Subgenius philologus's Avatar
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    I usually just tell them that I collect and paint toy soldiers. After they see the figs themselves explanations are tailored to that individuals tastes. The really incredulous are shown some key E-bay auctions and when they realize there is also money to be made, their respect goes up some.

  3. #3
    Superfreak!!! Torn blue sky's Avatar
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    If anyone asks I just tell them quite simply, it\'s an art form i\'m very interested in. If they don\'t like it, they just have to deal.
    I\'m not going to mask something I genuinly beleive to be a constructive and fruitfull passtime for the sake of \"Keeping up appearences\".
    If thats their atitude then why do they bother fishing,for example? Whats so great about sitting about bored sh!tless waiting for a fish then throwing it away???
    What\'s so great about kicking about a bag of air all day???
    What so great about going to the pub and getting wasted, embarrassing yourself in front of a group of good looking chicks, and waking up with a hangover next to a troll???
    I could go on...

  4. #4

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    Message original : vincegamer
    just keep it at a minimum - I like to paint small sculptures to make them appear as real as possible for example?
    More or less what I do. I\'ll also add in that there is a big community behind the hobby made up of people from all around the world. After it depends how interested the person looks after the quick explanation : \"I paint\" :P.

  5. #5

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    I have caught myself saying that I like to paint Historical figures, which in my mind somehow has more creedence that saying, I like to paint ogres and trolls, do you want to see my bloodthirster?....

    But, I have found the simpliest explaniation is just \"I paint miniature people\" and leave it at that. If they want to know more, they will surely ask.

    Its not, however, information I readily give. Its not like \"HI, I\'m Jim and I paint lead people.\"



  6. #6

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    Yep, I pretty much tell people now I paint miniatures, and the 40 year old virgin does the rest of the story for me... :D

    I\'ve gotten to the point I don\'t try to rationalize it, if the thought of the hobby turns someone off to wanted to talk, then that\'s their problem. :)

  7. #7

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    \"I paint miniature figurines.\" That\'s my standard response. If I\'ve been doing any conversions which needed some sculpting, I\'ll exaggerate and embellish somewhat: \"I sculpt and paint miniature figurines.\" Somehow, the word \'sculpt\' makes them think you\'re a sculptor. Now from being a geek, you\'re some incredible artist who paints and sculpts. people don\'t need much help for them to deceive themselves. :D

  8. #8
    Coffin Dodger / Keymaster airhead's Avatar
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    I usually start with the toy soldiers for a war-game (Warlord, D&D, etc.), but some of them I just paint because they look cool and are fun to paint.

  9. #9

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    well, i show them - my cmon account comes out when the topic of my \"unusual\" hobby comes up.

  10. #10
    Official Freak Bar Witch wiccanpony's Avatar
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    :D a lot depends on who’s asking and how they are asking...if it’s a casual question I just say it’s a hobby...... if they are really interested ,I’ll go into depth on the subject, of course watching their eyes...when the began to glaze I know to stop.:drool:lol

  11. #11

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    I too try to keep the explanations as short as possible if I\'m unable to show what I do. Mostly, people will not be able to fully take it seriously unless I can show them what it is I do and then it\'s just a waste of time talking about it too much.

    If I have the chance to show what I do, however, then people generally become very interested and forget every thought they might have had that it\'s geeky or childish to do practice this hobby. :)

  12. #12

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    Mostly, I say \"have you ever seen that shop called Games Workshop in your town? I paint the figures from there.\" If they haven\'t seen a GW, I tell them that they are like little toy soldiers. It sounds more pathetic that way, but I guess it is easier for me because I\'m not an adult lol

  13. #13

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    I just tell people it\'s my form of meditation. I paint for relaxation.
    If anyone gets lippy I just kick em in the nads! lol

  14. #14

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    Originally posted by DrEvilmonkiIf anyone gets lippy I just kick em in the nads! lol
    Sounds like you need to do more painting.

  15. #15
    Superfreak!!! Dragonsreach's Avatar
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    I paint toy soldiers, you got a problem with that, then take it elsewhere. lol

  16. #16

    Default Similar to DR....

    I just say in a slightly hushed, conspiratorial voice, \"I collect toy soldiers\" and then wink at them.:D

    It works a treat!:bouncy:

  17. #17

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    i just say im a painter if people ask i will explain more about what i paint.

    from experience at school i think kids get teased because of how people have seen others who are obsessed with warhammer or 40k.

  18. #18
    Brushlicker tzor's Avatar
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    \"I paint little tiny figures.\"

    Depending on the person I can show them my Unicorn and fowl, or my nude Mary or some other work.

    Now they are in my living room sourrounded by all the paint by number oil paintings my grandfather used to make. (except of course for the nudes both mine and my grandfather\'s)

  19. #19

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    paint by numbers nudes reminds me of that line from \"The Colour of Magic.\" \"Pink. You\'ve run out of pink.\"

  20. #20
    Superfreak!!! Sand Rat's Avatar
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    Bugger that.

    I tell em I paint toy soldiers and game and if they cant handle that, dont take it any further. If they want to give me shyte for doing something childish, I ask then when the last time they sat around playing Fantasy Baseball or Football was - and then discuss how \"adult\" that is.

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