Swordwind Host WIP
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Thread: Swordwind Host WIP

  1. #1

    Default Swordwind Host WIP

    Howdy! Name\'s Kevin.

    I\'m new-ish to 40K - started collecting an Eldar army around Thanksgiving last year, fulfilling a childhood dream that was about 12 years in the coming. (As far as I\'m concerned, this game has the best background universe in all gamedom, hands down. Devilishly baroque; medieval and futuristic simultanously.) I’ve since learned that the actual game part – the “roll-all-the-dice-you-own-no-really” bit where you have the minis arrayed for battle on a big, green table - is really a small portion of what this is all about. Where 40K shines is as an entire hobby-system: perusing the background material, planning an army, collecting the minis, modeling and painting, hand-crafting convincing terrain. No other minis game even comes close to touching all those nubbins so totally.

    Okay, done gushing.

    Eight months and roughly 3000 points of Eldar later, I’ve just finally gotten around to priming and painting the warhost. I’ve thrown in my lot with the Biel-Tan craftworld for two reasons: 1) from a fluff perspective, it allows me to field the widest variety of seriously neato models from the Eldar line, of which there are a mind-boggling number, and 2) my favorite color is green anyhow.

    I have neither the time nor motor control to make Golden Daemon entries out of every model in my collection. That said, I’ve seen some right nasty slopjobs at the local tournaments and I think that a carelessly painted army looks worse on the tabletop than an unpainted one. I’m shooting for above-average tabletop quality with the Swordwind, a 45%/55% balance between speed and niceness. (I have a ton of miniatures to paint, after all.) My first Real Big Goal is to have a shot at winning a Best-Painted Army award in an 1850-point tournament at my local hobby shop. I am also a graduate student in the final year of my Master’s program, and I’ll be quite busy when September rolls around so I don’t have a reasonable deadline for that yet.

    So! Pictured below you’ll see the first miniatures I’ve ever had the pleasure of slopping paint on. I’ve learned quite a bit about thinning out my paints (still think it’s too thick, though), painting white (black base = BAD), and brush control by cutting my teeth on these Dire Avengers. They’re a bit messy, and I’m okay with that. I intend to finish them, clean ‘em up, and leave ‘em – as inspiration, something to look back to when I’m feeling frustrated to see how far I’ve come.

    (Also, I don’t know if this is unique to Dire Avengers or to painting minis in general, but every time I feel like I’m coming close to completion, I find a ton of random details on the model that need to be taken care.)

    I’ve read about “creating a unified army look” here on the ‘net. To that end, I’m trying to work green / white into each Aspect’s ritual color scheme. With the DA’s, I’m doing the ribbons tied around their arms and legs in green and white, and I’ll be doing the fur (er, hairlike psychoplastic?) on the helmets in green, white, and black stripes as well. A few questions, if I may:

    1) A few Avengers have sprit stones hanging from cords on their tabards, and I can’t seem to paint the cords anyway that doesn’t look like crap. Thoughts?
    2) Speaking of spirit stones: help! I’m using Liche Purple as a base, a 50/50 blend of Liche and Warlock Purple as a mid-tone, and Warlock Purple as my highlight and I can’t seem to get them to come out looking nice. The shading either looks garish or you can’t see the shading at all. What’s a guy to do?
    3) Some Avengers also have scopes and extra clips hanging from their belts. Since the scopes, clips, and tabards are all white, the kind of run together. What can I do to give them some visual separation?

    I’ll work on getting higher-quality pictures in the future.

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    Dire Avengers
    Dire Avenger Weapons
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  2. #2

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    Well, I\'m not nearly the painter you probably want advice from but I am starting my own ulthwe eldar army after a long time away from painting and never really owning a completed army because of my snail\'s pace of painting in the past as well.

    I think your Dire Avengers look fantastic for a start. Especially with the final details and touchups they\'re an amazing start. I have a box or two of them to paint myself soon and was wondering if you could give the quick rundown of what you used on the blues for them?

    As far as the spirit stones..you\'re using purple. I\'ve done read on mine but if your shadows aren\'t looking dark enough a few very thin coats of black (barely any on the brush) to darken the top 1/4 of the gem really helped mine to look \"right\" to me at least. Instead of black, maybe a dark blue/purple -almost black to tie it in better?

    edit: actually just took a closer zoomed in look at the gems and they look pretty dark in places...I think just a thin bottom highlight of almost pink/purple would really make the dark, darker in comparison and push the contrast further. Who knows...maybe worth a try. Get a couple up close shots of just the gems in question maybe. Plenty of people with better ideas than me will weigh in I\'m sure.

    As far as their eldar junk and danglies :o :o I have the same problem with my eldar. I think where you can, a little blacklining...but black is probably too harsh...so spacewolves-grey lining? can help shade and differentiate between all the white maybe? My clips/trinkets/grenades/scopes are bone colored and black and I\'m having a similar problem too so looking forward to answers for this one.

    I think they\'ll look great in your army though especially after you\'ve greened up their helmet-hair...or whatever it\'s called.

    I hope to see plenty of updates on your WIP. You\'ve got a great start on these models.

  3. #3

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    Thanks for the kind words! It\'s taking longer than I expected to get these guys done, but I\'m still learning the ropes of this painting business and I expect things will speed up eventually.

    Tonight\'s \'game night\' at my place, so I probably won\'t be able to start painting again until tomorrow. I\'ll give the spirit stones another highlight - worst comes to worst, I can black them out and start over. I\'ll also think about grey-lining the tabards and that junk. I\'ll post pictures regardless of whether it looks good.

    After that, it\'s highlights on the grenades, the non-gun arms, stripes on the tabards, stripes in the helmet hair, touch-ups, then DONE. I mean, theoretically. I\'d love to do wraithbone bases for the squad, but having done two out of green stuff that took FOREVER, I\'m reconsidering. We\'ll see what happens.

  4. #4

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    While I\'m at it, here\'s a shot of the complete warhost.

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    HQ:

    Avatar of Khaine
    Farseer x3
    Warlock x3

    Elites:

    Striking Scorpions x6
    Harlequins x10
    -Troupe Master
    -Shadowseer
    -Death Jester

    Troops:

    Guardians x10
    Guardians x10
    Dire Avengers x10
    Dire Avengers x10
    Jetbike x4
    Wave Serpent x2

    Fast Attack:

    Swooping Hawks x6
    Warp Spiders x7
    Vyper

    Heavy Support:

    Dark Reapers x5
    Wraithlord x2
    War Walkers x3
    Falcon x2
    Fire Prism x1

    Needs moar Banshees, Fire Dragons and Serpents, for sure. One thing at a time.

    Most of it is primed. All but one of the tanks (the Fire Prism) was bought second-hand. I\'ve just finished stripping them (Castrol Super Clean does a good job, but sometimes the primer just stains the plastic and there\'s nothing you can do about it) and I\'m in the process of priming them right now. Of course, my white GW Spray Primer cak\'ed unexpectedly towards the end of priming the tanks\' underbellies, so I\'m in the market for a new white spray that ISN\'T GW. Any ideas?

    Most of this army sat, new on sprue, at a friend house for most of last year while I was dealing with grad classwork. As a \"favor\", he clipped and glued just about everything - a nice gesture, but I\'ve quickly learned how difficult it is to paint a miniature that\'s already completely assembled (espcially Guardians and DAs who hold guns across of their bodies, making their front armor a nuisance-and-a-half to reach with a brush of any size.) I\'ve ripped the appendges from the metal minis to make painting them easier but I\'m not sure what to do with my Troops. Should I suck it up and do my best on these guys despite the Shuriken Catapults in the way, or should should I risk popping their plastic arms off?

    P.S. I have a lot of painting to do.

  5. #5

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    Maybe these will help inspire you.

    http://www.allancarrasco.net/en/painting-miniatures/own-works/eldar-fishes/index.html#c411

  6. #6

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    :wow::wow: Those eldarfish are amazing. I don\'t know how I missed them last time I looked at his site. It\'s an easy one to remember with that eye always looking at you when you open the pics.

    You\'re got quite a force assembled there Ars. I know how it is though, there\'s something about these models that makes you want to have a few of each type :) Well painted eldar always is a great army to see on a table I think anyway.


  7. #7

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    Originally posted by Scherdy
    I have a box or two of them to paint myself soon and was wondering if you could give the quick rundown of what you used on the blues for them?
    Sure. These guys were primed black, basecoated with Regal Blue, the armor was highlighted with Enchanted blue, and then uber-highlights done with Ice Blue. Incidentally, the white bits were painted Ice Blue before being highlighted approximately 5000 times with Skull white. Next time, I\'ll prime those pieces separately.

  8. #8

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    Slowly... surely...

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    Someday I\'ll learn to take proper photos of these guys. Still truckin\'...

  9. #9

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    Re: Eel-dar. WOW. Those conversions are just stunning. 20,000 leagues under the Horus Heresy...? :redface:

    It reminds me of grand designs that I had of really wood-elf\'ing a Biel-Tan army, with all the units literally entangled in vines and greenery, starting with Wraithlords converted from Treefolk models and Warchmachine Wold-constructs as Wraithguard (1, 2, 3). Alas! Too much fun ideas and too little time.

  10. #10

    Default

    A very tidy paintjob on that dire avenger. I would like to see some more shadowing and highlighting overall, but this shows great promise!

  11. #11

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    Thank you! I assume you\'re talking about shadowing the white areas, which, to be honest, look pretty flat even in real life. I started painting the white without really knowing what I was doing - not knowing that you highlight up around the areas you want to leave shaded - and now I\'m not sure if I can fix it. Is it still possible to add shading to the helmet and the tabard without basically redoing the whole thing?

  12. #12

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    I know how it is though, there\'s something about these models that makes you want to have a few of each type :)
    Tell me about it! My very first Eldar purchase was a box of Harlequins, A) because the models are gorgeous and B) because their fluff reminded me of the old Elven Bladesinger kit from 2nd ed. D&D (which should tell you exactly how practical my army lists tend to be.)

  13. #13

    Default

    Originally posted by ArsLoqui
    Thank you! I assume you\'re talking about shadowing the white areas, which, to be honest, look pretty flat even in real life. I started painting the white without really knowing what I was doing - not knowing that you highlight up around the areas you want to leave shaded - and now I\'m not sure if I can fix it. Is it still possible to add shading to the helmet and the tabard without basically redoing the whole thing?
    Yes it is possible, however, judging where you are currently at in your painting, it will require learning a little more advanced technique. Mind you, it is very achievable, but something that takes a little practice to get just right. What you want to do is take a light grey (codex grey) or light sandy brown (graveyard earth) and this the paint down to consistency of colored water. Think Cool Aid. Dip your fine detail brush into the colored water then take some of the moisture out on a paper towel. Then paint a very thin coat into the areas you would like shadow. Crease of the tabbard, helm, gun etc. It might take a couple very thin coasts to notice the difference at all, but it is do-able.

    This is a link to the technique you will be using. The tutorial explains the technique as it applies to a whole model, but I think it does a good job.

    http://www.reapermini.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=32050&hl=blending

    I hope this helps! Good luck.
    :D

    p.s. In the future just put down a base coat of Foundation Khemri Brown then build up the white after that... much easier.

  14. #14

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    That\'s an incredibly impressive tutorial. I\'ll try my hand at it once I\'m finished with striping the helmet-hair, but if takes waaay way way too long then I\'ll probably move on and do a better job from the get-go on the next set.

  15. #15

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    Originally posted by ArsLoqui
    ... if takes waaay way way too long then I\'ll probably move on and do a better job from the get-go on the next set.
    The nice thing about the techniquet that Olliekickflip describes in that tutorial is that once you get it down, it really doesn\'t take long at all... that is once you get it down... that takes some time. Best of luck to you, can\'t wait to see some more picks. I\'m on my way into an ork army now, so I feel your painting pains.
    ;)

  16. #16

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    Thanks! I just get nervous about trying it on already mostly-completed model. I think what I\'ll do is paint up a random extra bit and then try it out there. Looks really useful!

    Also, good luck with the Orks. I\'ve long considered Orks as a \"second army\" to play around with if I\'ve got a friend who wants to try out the game, etc. I\'ve got more than enough work cut out for me with Eldar already, but my friends have offered to help build and paint the Black Reach set with me if I buy it, so I might break down and get it before the summer\'s end. Then it\'s Eldar vs. Orks, which, if codex-memory serves correctly, is a perfectly fluff face-off.

    The Avengers are all but finished now. They\'re fully assembled, so it\'ll just be a little bit of touch-up and then basing and boom! first unit finished. Last night I also took the time to magnetize the turrets on my Falcons and my one stock Wave Serpent.

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    Magnetized Wonderfulness
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    I haven\'t figured out how to make the FW Serpent turret swappable yet. I\'m thinking I\'ll chop off the Shuricannons and set it up for use with the slot-based weapons that belong the Walkers and Wraithlords. Word\'s still out on how I\'ll be magnetizing those suckers.

    One question I have is: what to do with the protective armor plates that attach to the weapons on the skimmer turrets? I have a bunch of them, but not enough for all of the weapons I\'ve got. Is it worth my time to figure out how to magnetize them or should I just glue the ones I have to a couple weapons and the ones without will just have to go without?

  17. #17

    Default

    The Dire Avengers are done. Verdict: not so dire after all! I still plan to do wraithbone bases when I can find anywhere in this country that sells plasticard, but except for touch-ups as I spot them they\'re finished. I\'ll get pictures up soon.

    I\'ve got the vehicle itch, so next up is a squadron of War Walkers. My original plan had been to paint models in order starting with the ones I used most in games, and the WWs (er, their proxies) hit the table almost every time. It\'s sort of refreshing to be not doing fine detail work at the moment!

    In my quest to have everything in my army at least primed, and in the interest of not dropping $18.00+tax for a can of GW Spray Primer (love Canada!), I picked up cans of Rust-Oleum\'s \"Painter\'s Touch\" Flat White and Flat Black sprays on a tip from some other forum. Though, I\'ve read that Krylon and Duplicolor both do a suitable job as primer alternatives, I can\'t seem to find any of that stuff within a twenty-mile radius of this town. So $5.99 a can for Rust-Oleum it was! And actually, it looks nice. I\'ve tested both the black and the white on my models. It\'s a hair glossier than the GW product but it leaves a clean, super-thin finish. I\'m really impressed with the stuff. I expect any Citadel paints I throw on the models will kill the shine... even if it doesn\'t, I\'ll be knocking them with some sort of sealant anyway and I expect that\'ll do the job.

    More pictures when I have \'em!

  18. #18

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    Plasticard? Hmm... Well, i could start buying even more excessive amounts of it and then selling it for the double to you...:beer:

    or just check out this link: http://shop.ebay.com/?_from=R40&_trk...All-Categories

    Now, a three step simple guide, 1: Buy, 2: Build, 3: Post! (please?) lol

  19. #19

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    You\'re a genius. :redface: I actually found a Gale Force Nine sampler at an obscure local hobby store. I think I\'ll pick that up and experiment with the different thicknesses, and when I find something I like I\'ll just mass order in on Ebay. Good call!

    I bought an airbrush this morning for basecoating the vast majority of my stuff. Instead of straight-up white and green, I\'m opting for a whitish wraithbone and green (I like the look of it a bit better, and it\'s ten kinds of easier to paint to smooth satisfaction.) It\'s a Badger 250. The can of compressed air that came with it was crap, but the receipt for the airbrush has a 50% off one item coupon usable this Sunday, so I\'ll be picking up a compressor anyway. And, uh, hoping for the best! This thing is going to save me so much time.

    (Especially if I ever get around to the used 2500 point Tyranid army I just stripped. Airbrush, highlight, dip and done!)

  20. #20

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    Not slacking off! But I\'m working on work stuff. I have, however, started on the bases for the Dire Avengers and on basecoating some tanks. Picture\'s poor quality but I don\'t have time to futz with lighting.

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    I also ruined it by dropping the thing after I applied the final coat of paint, and now the finish is spotty and uneven (lumpy.) Any easy way to fix this?

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