Hello! The long silence is broken, we are mostly back in business! To open our dealings I present a model that I've been wanting to share for a while but have been prevented from doing so by competition rules:
This is a Black Scorpion Diamond Joe that I'm going to use as a Captain for a pirate warband that I am building as and when I find a figure that inspires me. I also entered him in the Golden Chef competition that Black Scorpion run. Whilst I didn't win anything I am chuffed to be on the "mentions" page. Sadly it's been so long since I painted him that I cannot remember a darned thing that I did!
The time lag however gives rise to an interesting comparison, take a look at the face above, now compare with:
This was taken just one month later after I had refined some of the new tricks that I was using to paint skin (some of which were developed for the pirate captain) and compare that with:
Older work again. Now each of these shots represents the very best I could do at that time and I was (and am, be fair Jeff) proud of all of these miniatures when I painted them but it just goes to show how much can change in such a limited time with constant practice. "But hold on," you cry, "you do this for a living Jeff, I just don't have the time to..." and at that point I would interrupt. One of the things I hear most often is "I don't have the time to..." to this I say rubbish. You probably do not have eight hours a day to lavish on your hobby but I bet, I just bet that you could find half an hour, or even a full hour. Think about times in the day when you are just sitting, watching TV for instance. Get a lap tray, a folding table, a comfortable cushion for the coffee table and get some paint on a model while watching Big Who Wants to be a Weakest Link Get Me Out Of Here or whatever. It is amazing how many shows do not need you to use your eyes at all. Adding an hour a day to your painting will add the equivilent of 45 of my working days to your painting time.
Think about that. What if we were all to paint a model a week? That's 52 models a year, enough for a small 40k army, a decent sized Warmachine host, a couple of gangs for Malifaux or one of the Specialist games. The list goes on and with batch painting you can probably do 5 models in the time taken to paint 2. That is more like 130 models a year. Most importantly of all, you would keep a paintbrush in your hand and keep the muscle memory going. Painting is no different to playing a musical instrument. Practice is essential and the ONLY way to improve. Also, use it or loose it, If I have a sparse painting month due to holidays or RealLifeTM getting in the way then when I return I feel "rusty", tight, cramped. Takes a few sessions to get back in the groove.
Anyhow, hope that has made you think! I should be back to normal service very shortly (just waiting on a serial key for Photoshop CS3) and have lots to share.