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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Getting the band together - Norse Gael

For Christmas, Mrs. Gamer gave me a Gripping Beast Norse-Gael warband. For readers not interested in the Dark Ages, you're probably muttering "Dear lord, make him stop!"  Short of divine intervention,  I can't stop my Dark Ages painting quite yet but I'll change things up by sharing how I put this warband together.

These 2 pics should be last in today's post but with blogging, I'm compelled to lead with my best. I start a warband by painting levy figures first and working my way up the socioeconomic ladder. These 12 javelinmen are Norse-Gael levy. As such, they're poor, plain and expendable.   I'll go into who the Norse-Gael were later in this series. For now, you might be asking how did I get here? Let's rewind to the start. 

The Way of the Gun:  I'm positively stuck on basing my 28mm figures with a glue gun.  It's fast, easy and reversible should you decide to rebase. The blob of glue also gives a nice transition that reduces the "pitcher's mound" effect.  

Chop It Down:  The figures below are the javelinmen.  To distinguish them from the spearmen, I took the Gripping Beast spears and clipped them at both ends. I cut the spears down to less than the height of the figures to better represent a javelin. Then I cut the enormous spearpoints down by 50% as well. 
Drill, Baby, Drill: Gripping Beast cast their axe-wielding figures without holes in their hands. Bad Beasty! Don't they know that drilling 24 hands out with a pin drill is brutally slow and painstaking work? With my Dremel and attachment, I got through this quickly and without swears!
What Can Brown do for You?  I prime my Dark Age figures white, topped with a burnt umber ink wash. The ink is cut with water and a bit of glue to make it colorfast during the paint and wash stage.  You can use matte medium for this as well and Gillies of the Wilderness of Mirrors blog has a recipe for an ink bath. Gillies turned me onto the wonders of ink and I've been hooked  since. I apply the ink wash everywhere but the shield front.  Those need to stay white for the LMBS shield transfers. One benefit of an inked figure is it helps you see the detail.  If you paint neatly and keep the ink in the borders, you get an effect similar to blacklining.  


So, that's how I put these mad Viking-Irish fellows together. 

I'm putting some of my 15mm Field of Glory armies up for sale.  The Ancient Spanish are up on the block today and after I get a good set of pictures, the Medieval Hungarian Army will follow. The link to the Spanish is tucked below the banner if you're interested.  Thanks for looking!     

40 comments:

  1. Aren't you posting at a different time? Usually you post evenings and I looked for you because some blogs aren't updating again.

    Anyway you've done a lovely job on these as always and I think you're doing commission work on this period.

    I've seen glue guns and wondered about how they'd work. Also I had no clue that there was an attachment for a hand drill that would be small enough to work on miniatures.

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    1. You are sharp eyed, with so many blogs and bloggers out there!

      This warband is for me but I have had a number of SAGA commissions. I don't want to be a 1 trick pony so I'm going to do paint other periods after I finish my Norse Gael. I'm still looking for my "whale" project. Something huge and fun. Still looking!

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  2. Hitting another warband out of the ball park. Nice work! My rechargeable Dremel just gave up the ship and I need a new one, which model did you get?

    BTW, I needed a light for my auxiliary painting table and followed your review on the daylight lamp. It arrived today and it's great, thanks for posting it.

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    1. Thanks Iowa! I have the 4000 for the variable speed and also the attachment 225-01 because the dremel is too big and bulky to do this by itself.

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  3. Greate work Monty !!!

    Indeed a interesting wardand, i adont that that book for SAGA could one have a very short intro to their pros and cons?

    best regards Michael

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    1. Hi Michael! Yes, I want to discuss the battleboard and this faction in my next post or 2. It is an all melee orientated battleboard. More to follow!

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  4. Your javelinmen are top of the score again! Thanks for insight in your approach on figure prepping. I know you already wrote it somewhere but what make is the ink you use? Can't find the relevant post...

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    1. Hi Moiterei! I use Daler Rowney. I bet you have good options in Germany but locally, this is the ink to use. I've used some cheaper ones and they were not as good. Good luck!

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  5. Hi Monty,

    they are top!
    I really like the layers you have painted on them, they are expendables but I have not seen Sly ( My idol !! )anywhere????
    still swimming in the jester's bath??????
    thanks for the link my friend ;-)
    coming next : PARIS INK ! ;-)

    Cheers

    Gillies " ink!!!!! not hic!!!!! ;-)"

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    1. Gilles,thanks! Lol! You led me to the ink, now I have to...drink? Not too good with rhymes!

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  6. Hello from Dublin ! Excellent as always Monty

    Phil

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    1. Phil! Thanks sir, and thanks for ringing in. I hope all is well in Dublin. That is a city I'd so love to visit one day, and hoist a pint!

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  7. Nice one Monty. Thanks for sharing your techniques mate. The quality of your painted miniatures clearly validates your process. They are always superb!

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    1. Hey Michael, thanks! I do need to step out of the Dark Ages and paint other periods, maybe even fantasy. ;-)

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  8. Great work Monty and my favourite warband, you need to add the Sons of death and this faction becomes a killer ;)

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    1. A hot tip! Thanks Andrew and now I'm off to figure this one out, and order the Sons of Death.

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  9. Your figures look positively possessed and are full of character! I hope they frighten all those who oppose them.

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    1. Thanks Jonathan! They do have the rough look of men who won't be put off.

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  10. what..no.. Scots or Welsh units to paint up? :o)

    anyway...well done again Monty! excellent Art work by you sir..
    umm..hmm...here's an idea, perhaps have a one person "Miniatures World" exhibition of your work at your nearest Art Gallery? "grin"

    all the best,
    Cheers

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    1. The day they let us fellows in to an art gallery would be an interesting day indeed! Your Arab army is fantastic Phil. Maybe we could have adjoining studios?

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    2. Thanks Monty, regarding to the Arab Conquest....
      ..but wait...oh my God!...Attila and his Hunnic Hordes are approaching!!

      as for adjoining studios, yeah sure, any time mate! :o)
      cheers

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    3. That is fantastic! I finished up Dan Carlin's series on the Huns and it was riveting. You've put a ton of time and thought into your big DBA push. I can't wait to see the Huns!

      BTW, if I'm the Matise of Minis, you're Manet. Let's grab some Absinthe, shall we?

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  11. No apologies necessary, Monty. Enjoy the passion for each particular genre/period when you have the fire. And indeed your passion shows through your brushwork - basing as well. I also felt your pain with drilling out hands - I've done a fair share with Old Glory figs. Best, Dean

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    1. Thanks for that level set, Dean. I needed that.

      My views flatlined this year and I presume its because I'm Dark Ages/SAGA centric. I bought 3 warbands for my wife to give me for Xmas and birthday so there is more to come. I do love the history so I'll stick with it as long as its fun.

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  12. Another cracking post Monty with lots of useful tips; I might add that I now have a Dremel flex shaft after seeing yours - great bit of kit!

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    1. Thanks Michael! I'm glad I could offer up something. I lean on everyone else for tips and tricks. When I need a tip on painting the female form, I know where to turn
      to. ;-)

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  13. Wow. (Again)

    These guys are brilliant. I will have to try that inked basecoat technique for myself.

    Excellent work, I look forward to seeing the rest of this fearsome band!

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    1. Thans Ev! I want to see if I can win with these fellows. Maybe, just maybe...

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    2. I learned the hard way to hang on to a couple of spare SAGA dice! But you probably know that already...

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    3. I've now got a couple of hot tips. Thanks sir and more to come on these fellows!

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  14. Some very nice muted colours on those levies Monty – I really like them! Looking forward to the rest of the merry band.

    Very interesting to get a glimpse of your techniques as well. That inking stuff looks like something I will have to try out myself some time.

    And there is no such thing as too much Dark Ages!

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    1. Thanks Jonas! I especially appreciate the Dark Ages comment. Much like where you live, we go through weeks of gray skies. The sun's rays have not touched my skin in a very long time and the lack of vitamin D messes with a fellow's mind. Refocused and on to the next round. :-)

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  15. A scruffy-looking pack of killers, Monty. Suitable for loitering on the street-corners of Dubhlinn. ;)

    FMB

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    1. Love it! Dubhlinn was founded by these fellows it seems.

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