Thursday, 21 July 2011

New Addition & Randomness of Posting Explained

First things first. On the right hand side of the blog you'll notice a little banner has been added. Any of you who've followed me hear from LJ will know I'm a big fan of From the Warp, both as a community/hobby resource and of Ron's work as an artist (because if the models he makes and paints aren't art, I don't know what is). I never felt my LJ was suitable material for the FTW blog rolls, but I want to make every endeavour to ensure this one is. I sent Ron an e-mail asking if I could join, Ron sent me a nice reply and here I am on FTW Blog Roll three.

For anyone reading this blog who doesn't know me (perhaps you've stumbled here from the blog rolls or wandered onto this page thinking it was a repository of electic knowledge and are feeling a litte confused) I'd like to give a little bit of background about what I'm doing here.

  1. I'm a painter rather than a player of 40k and I'm not exclusive to painting 40k miniatures only. Aside from a few games of space hulk in the early 90s, I've never played a single game of 40k. I have rule books, I know points values, I can make a reasonable guess as to whats good and what isn't, but I don't know the game. Which isn't to say I'm opposed to the idea of playing the game, I'd love to give it a try in fact but finding the time do so is difficult. I even have vague pretentions of drawing up some kind of army list but this is growing organically based on what I want to paint, rather than what units I want to field.
  2. My principle passion is for the Dark Angels and this goes all the way back to looking at Rogue Trader with friends back in the early 90s and in particular the two page spread of all founding Space Marine legions. All of us decided, via some unconcious unpsoken agreement, to pick a legion that they would paint. One friend picked Space Wolves, another Blood Angels, another Ultramarines and I was left wondering what I'd pick. On gut instinct I plumped for Dark Angels because the name resonated with me. The perfect juxatposition of light and dark, of redemption and wrath. Rules may have changed, colour schemes may have changed but, I've stuck with this chapter for the last 20 years and I'm not quitting now. I admit I nearly did when the first rules revision changed the colour scheme from black to dark green in 92/93 because I had about 50 beaky marines painted at that point and didn't want to start over. Fortunately the background for the Dark Angels revision included a saviour.

  3. If you magnify how fond I am of the Dark Angels by a factor of ten, you'll be close to how attached I am to my beloved Deathwing. The novella that came with the Space Hulk: Deathwing expansion (and the miniatures citadel subsequently released) captured my imagination, as only a tale of fatalism, futility, honour and redemption could to a teenager in post-Thatcherite Britain. Painting Deathwing is something of a lifelong quest for me, because the colour scheme and background is so evocative, it's important to me to get it right. I'm not sure what "right" is, I only know I've not found it yet. Of all the paint schemes I've done, I find the Deathwing to be the most challenging as bone is not very forgiving of mistakes. At times it is damn frustrating but, I always return to them.

  4. I'm also rather fond of Grey Knights, which again stems back to those early Rogue Trader days and the release of those first Grey Knight Terminators from GW. I remember marvelling at the detail and thinking "I'll never be able to paint those." I did buy one figure in the end, thought about painting it, decided not to and eventually washed it down with black and pretended it was a tiny pewter statue. I think I'm pretty much over my "performance anxiety" with regard to painting Grey Knight's these days, I'll leave you to judge if that is justified or not. So the Grey Knight's will put in regular appearances on here, all the more so because I find them a lot easier to paint than Deathwing. I like the background to the Grey Knight's as well, I think of them as Space Marines V2.0.
  5. However, as stated at point one, I am a painter rather than a gamer and I'm drawn towards those models I find most interesting to paint. So you'll see all sorts of stuff here. Sometimes I'll paint guides on particular colour schemes just to explain a particular technique I've been asked a question about. Sometimes I might even paint things purely at the suggestion of comments made here.

  6. My macro photography is not the best. I take my hat off to anyone out there who produces decent close ups of their miniatures. If you have any advice for me on my photography (and painting and writing and anything really) please share it, because everyone benefits if I improve my photos.

  7. Finally, why is this blog titled "Paint it Black" given I'm predominantly painting anything but black? Well this is partly because, in my view, painting black is one of the hardest things to get right on a mini. There are so many ways of painting black and not one approach is suitable to every circumstance. More than anything else, painting black is something I approach as a technical exercise in its purest sense. It is also partly because I am intrigued by the Dark Angels sucessor chapter, the Consecrators, and plan to paint a few squads at some point. So at some point in the future, there will be black days ahead of us (gloomy pun intended). And it is also partly because its my favourite Rolling Stones song and it often runs through my head when I'm painting black.

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