Moments of Inertia by Rachel Crawford

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Rippa's Snarlfangs

I want a whole army of wolf riders but I cannot have one! These are the only 3 wolf riders currently available in AoS! It’s Kurnothi all over again! A terrible shame.

These came together really well. I started off with a zenithal basecoat, but hadn’t made up my mind about what colours to use until I grabbed a pot of yellow Contrast paint and tried it on the plume. That bright yellow dictated the rest of the scheme and it all fell into place. Blue, green, yellow.

They were quick, too. Contrast and washes allowed me to get good results on the fur, leather, plumes and wrappings really quickly, with just a little drybrushing and layering at the end to add highlights.

I’m particularly pleased with the metal, another successful test ride for Vallejo Metal Colors. Look at Stabbit’s shield:

In one smooth coat of Copper I was able to lay down the base. Next, I worked a bit of Aethermatic Blue into the grooves (looks cool as heck). Then a little bit of Nihilakh Oxide in places where I thought there should be stronger oxidization like around the bolts. Then I just highlighted up a bit with Gold and, finally, edge-highlighted with Silver right on the top of the shield. Very fast, very simple, very fun.

For the blades (e.g. Rippa’s sword) I used Burnt Iron followed by a dark green-blue wash, then highlighted up to Silver.

A note about the rims of the bases: Some people don’t like base rims to be anything other than black or dark brown. Now, my opinion is that the rim is as much part of the model as everything else, and it can be used to contribute to the overall effect. In this instance, the sky blue on the rims contrasts with the yellow ground and suggests the desert sky under which the Snarlfangs ride. To choose black instead would be a shrug. In fact, I think it might detract from the final result, because nothing else on the model is black enough for it to match with, or white enough for it to pop against. I’m not saying you should never paint rims black, just that you should probably be able to justify it artistically.

Grassy Scatter Terrain

I made these by roughly following this tutorial by Terrain Tutor. Instead of spackle I used modelling compound and instead of slate I used bits of foam for the rocks. The trees are from Woodland Scenics, and while they’re a bit diminuitive, they’re not so small that they look entirely out of place next to 28mm-scale minis.

This was a great way to start making terrain and I gained a lot of confidence. I’ll make a few more, with bases of different sizes and shapes, to scatter about the battlefield.

MORE Sacrosanct

3 more Stormcast on the Stormcast pile! These are the Castigators from Storm Strike.

I adore these models. Turns out they actually come in units of 3 after all, so this is a minimum-size unit. If I get a couple more I can run a unit of 9. I’m sure I’ll get at least 6 of them on the table at some point, just to see if they can do any work.

This was my first proper project using Vallejo Metal Colors paints. I was trying to match the look of my usual Retributor Armour recipe. The end result is a little less yellow, but plenty shiny and rich, and it took less than half the time to do. Going forward I think I’ll be doing as much as possible using Metal Colors - they really are amazing.

Also in the box you get a lovely little bird-dog companion!

I want more gryph-hounds to go with her!

In the background you can see my new Army Painter wet palette. I’ve been using a homebrew tupperware-and-baking-paper solution since I started in the hobby 2 years or so ago and after Christmas I felt like spending some money and making the leap to a “proper” wet palette. I feel like a bit of a mark every time I notice the Army Painter logo on the case, but otherwise I am very pleased with my purchase - the special paper and foam perform much better than anything I could have homebrewed.

Finally, I have painted the Knight-Incantor from Soul Wars. I’m not super pleased with her face but I did my best. Apart from that I think she looks great.

With that, I’ve finished all the Stormcast from Soul Wars and Storm Strike. Looking forward to running a mostly-Sacrosanct army sometime soon.

I still have that one remaining Sequitor to paint who I got for free in the Warhammer shop on the Royal Mile, but I think I’ll chip away at him as I proceed with other projects. I am done with painting Stormcast Eternals for the moment.

They're Not Resolutions - They're Aspirations

Many keyboards are worn down by the annual flurry of conversation about New Year’s Resolutions - whether they work, how to do them properly, and so on. It’s tiresome. I’ve always seen the beginning of a year as a good opportunity for a kind of reset, some time for reflection on and reappraisal of priorities. Following that, a sense of optimism and excitement about what is to come.

Over my winter Holiday, which was especially long, I made the vague decision to stay in Edinburgh, or at least stay with Rockstar Games, for the next few years. I’ve been here 3.5 years and the whole time I’ve viewed my presence as kinda temporary. 2019 was especially indecisive should-I-stay-or-should-I-go at some points, so it’s nice to now have a sense of certainty about what I want to do with the future.

Here’s some resolution-type things. They start off as vague ideals, then I force myself to refine them into clear specifications for achievable goals.

  1. Write more. Write a bit every day. Therefore, write 100 words a day. (These are my 100 words for today!) I manage to achieve this on days when I write blog posts, which the 100-word-target has motivated me to do more of, but otherwise I keep missing it. So I might downgrade it to a 50-word target, because the original intent was to motivate me to literally just open up a document and add a little bit more to it every day.
  2. Hobby every day. Just do the smallest measurable amount every day. I’ve already written about my lofty hobby goals for 2020.
  3. Learn Scottish Gaelic. Do Duolingo every day. I rather like Duolingo, but I’d be kidding myself if I thought it was enough to pick up enough Gaelic to speak it fluently. I will look into more hardcore learning methods.
  4. Finish the Warcry Card Creator. To this end, plunk 5 minutes of work into it every day.
  5. Keep up my very basic exercise regime. To get started, I do 20 squats every day. On lazy days I can just leave it there, but on energetic days once I get started I will work through the whole suite. It’s definitely paying off, getting easier to do and improving my body shape, so it might be time to find some more exercises to add to the routine.
  6. Play videogames more. Last year I barely played videogames at all because I just hobbied a whole bunch. Play a videogame for 15 minutes per day. (I suck at this one. Why is it so hard?)
  7. Read more books. Read 5 pages every day.
  8. Go swimming. Once. This is a matter of overcoming a fear of being publicly mostly-naked that has prevented me from enjoying swimming, one of my favourite forms of exercise, for like 10 years. I want to punt that fear right into the bin where it belongs.

Hitting all these targets in a day isn’t easy, even though they’re all quite small. I suspect I need to build a daily routine that gets me through them all.

What are your ‘New Year’s Incredibly Specific Targets’?

Castigators

Finally got these done. This squad of 5 is from Soul Wars.

I adore these models. Excellent crossbow grenade launcher things. The Prime’s pose is cool but I’m not sure why she is wearing such generous high heels.

Like a lot of Stormcast units, they have somewhat questionable rules. You’d expect grenade launchers to have a bit more punch to them, but without increasing the unit size and buffing them up a bit (there’s a few ways) their output looks marginal. That said, they are only 80 points, which I think makes them the cheapest Stormcast. I don’t know. Also I haven’t put them on the table yet. Maybe they’re useful in their own special way.

Up next: 3 more Castigators, the ones from Soul Strike. I’d like to be able to field a unit of 10, but I’ll need to find a way to get another 3 non-Primes from somewhere to do that.

Secret Bonus Content!

I am lucky to be part of a truly excellent online hobby community. For the 2nd year in a row an outstanding member of said community arranged a Secret Santa gift exchange in which people make special conversions and all kinds of cute stuff to send to their Santa-ee. I received some adorable Ghyran-themed objective markers along with a short story about them. I love them!

(I added a bit of green flock to them today. Perhaps it’s a bit sacrilegious to modify a gift someone made for you.)

As for which delightful community member made these for me, I do not know. The game is afoot!