Monday, December 14, 2009

Obi Wan Kenobi vs Anakin Skywalker, new from Knightmodels

This time they have really surprised me. Our colleagues from Knightmodels continue with their Star Wars line which is showing a very high quality. In their latest set of new figures, all of them excellent, we find this duel sculpted by Alfonso Gozalo and painted by Alfonso Giraldes (Banshee). Its a scene in 70mm like all other figures from Knightmodels. I think the photos speak for themselves.

My friend Alfonso Giraldes has returned stronger than ever and this time he has outdone himself. The painting is exceptional, I have no words. It'll be hard to paint this kit because with such box-art there will be no one able to keep up with this level! Banshee has also warned us because of the complexity of the scene. The painting is very challenging and will mean a great leap in the learning of all those who embark on it. I am really eager to paint it, but all my time is being spent on my next big project, and I can't get to spend it with other things. I'll have to wait I guess. Besides, if I buy it, I will have to paint it for sure, the price of the kit does not allow keeping it in the drawer! Also, Knightmodels has a new 30mm Star Wars line scheduled for the beginning of 2010, which promises to be exceptional. We will follow them with great attention.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

IV Open de Quimera

This past weekend has been quite intense for me. Regarding painting matters, which is what interests us in this blog, we attended on Saturday the traditional "Open de Quimera", which takes place twice a year and is now in its fourth installment. It is a fantastic opportunity for us fans of the hobby in Madrid to get together, to present our latest works, to receive some awards and especially to have a good time with our colleagues. This edition has had slightly less participation than previous events, however the quality remained as high as always, and new generations of painters in Madrid are rising very much the level of the competition.

In my opinion, special mention for works submitted by emuse, darthgollum, Petrus, ARI-A-KAS, pumukyvan and Paloji. The one that surprised me the most was Paloji's Infinity one, which technically was not wonderful, but it was a beauty because of the colors chosen and the points of light that gave it a superb special grace. Congratulations to all and keep up the good work because the level is getting really high!

Personally, I decided to enter Malus Darkblade and the High Elf in Lion (whose real name is "Tribute to the Fallen") and the truth is that they both left a good impression. Everyone agreed that the photos I posted of Malus are not fair to the actual model, so I'm seriously thinking about reshooting them and remove those that are posted now as they are not receiving good grades in CoolMiniOrNot. The Elf in Lion won the category of Best Figure on a smaller scale of 54 mm and was named best figure of the contest (Best of Show). As a result I got a good string of hobby material courtesy of Quimera, and a super cool foam sword. My first Best of Show! Is it an appetizer of what is coming next year?

As you can see, I posted no photos of the Elf in Lion, but do not worry ... They have been already made and they are nearly ready to see the light!

I leave you a list of winners of the contest, but not before thanking Paco and all the people from Quimera for organizing a competition that gives us so much joy to many people. It is one of the best excuses to bring the whole painting community together in Madrid. For the next edition, I have been invited to be the judge. I hope to see you all there in the competition!


Historic - Pedro Rufo (Petrus)
Bigger than 54mm - Ivan Sempere
Smaller than 54mm - Rafael García Marín (volomir)
Green - Israel Gonzalez
Bust - Fermin Garcia

TALE OF WAR - Ruben Martinez (darthgollum)
INFINITY - Pablo Lopez (Paloji)
JMD - Pablo Plaza (Polk)
NOCTURNA - Pedro Rufo (Petrus)
PIZARRO - Enrique Velasco (Emuse)
GW - Jorge Valdes (Lord jasegev)

Historical - Juan Acosta
Bigger than 54mm - Javier Hernandez
Smaller than 54mm - Juan Acosta
Battle Group - Javier Hernandez

Rafael García Marín (volomir)

I leave you some of the best figures in the competition:

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Malus Darkblade

This is my version of Malus Darkblade in 28mm scale for Warhammer Fantasy. The figure started out as a simple conversion created from pieces of Warhammer Dark Elves Corsairs. I had always in mind the fantastic illustration from the cover of the book ‘Malus Darkblade’, and as the conversion progressed, I knew I would have to do some serious modelling to achieve my expectations. Therefore, in the end is nearly a scratch built model, with only the hands, the sword, and back part of the torso being plastic parts. The figure won bronze in Single Fantasy on Golden Demon Spain 2009.

For those of you who do not know Malus Darkblade, I will tell you that he is a Dark Elf Noble of evil renown in the Warhammer Fantasy world. Malus was possessed by a Daemon called Tz’arkan. His quest to rid himself of this Daemon is legendary. At one point he succeeded although it cost him his own soul. It took many years after that to track down the Daemon again and win his soul back, only to have Tz’arkan imprisoned inside him again.

When leading his armies to war, Malus rides his famous Cold One steed called Spite and wields the fearsome Warpsword of Khaine. He is a very dark character; he can summon Tz’arkan and allow him to control his own actions to become more powerful. This is great risk though, as while possessed by Tz'arkan he can attack his own troops as well as enemies.

The darkness of Malus inspired me in one of my darkest times to paint in cold and deadly colours, reflecting my mood at that moment. I want to thank all of my friends for their support, specially Elias Alonso (Morsi) for all his help and for collaborating on this figure.

I hope you like it, and as always, comments are very welcome!

Links to coolminiornot:
green :
painted version :

Behind the scenes: Malus Darkblade (Green) Step by Step

Friday, November 13, 2009

Golden Demons 2010 first news

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Tickets for Golden Demon Spain 2009 were out on sale by November last year, and we knew it would be in Madrid. But this year we know nothing for sure. That's why people start to wonder about Golden Demon Spain 2010. Well, rumours start to bloom about the date of this contest. They say it is going to be held at Palacio de Congresos de la Casa de Campo in Madrid on the 4th of July. Indeed, these are not confirmed news, but the information comes from very well informed sources, and you know what they say, where there's smoke...

Concerning the international scene, we know for sure that Games Day / Golden Demon France will be held in Paris on April 18. And we also have to say that our colleagues on the other side of the Atlantic have decided to reunite all their Games Days (4 specifically, Chicago, Atlanta, Baltimore and Los Angeles) and will hold a single event in the US. It is said to be in Washington and in August, although this is not confirmed yet. The problem with the dates is that Golden Demon USA will coincide with Golden Demon Germany which is celebrated always on the same month.

So let's start planning entries for 2010! I must warn you, it is going to be my year!! :P

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Back from Italy

Golden Demon Italy 2009 is over! The spanish expedition, though little in number, came back home with 4 trophies, showing how good in shape are some of our national painters. The greatest triumph had the name of our friend Javier González (Arsies) winner of this year's Spanish Slayersword. He got two golds (Single 40k, Sngle Fantasy) and one silver (Lord of the Rings). The other statue fell into the hands of Mario Rueda (Dante), unexpected winner of silver in Single 40k with his Space Wolf Terminator (or as an italian would say, with his "Lupo Siderale" :D). Congrats my friends!

The Slayersword went to Andrea Ottolini for his Black Templars squad, although the most cheered entry was the unit of Squigs from Fabrizio Russo. I hope to be able to post some photos of winners when I have some time!

Concerning me, my little Éowyn the traveller once again returned with no reward. She's going to retire from the circuit as I said, she's quite tired of aeroplanes XD. Let's close her story once and for all!!

I don't have enough time to post more about this today, but before I leave I would like to say that we are going to enter now in a period of time where there are no Golden Demons near. This means we have plenty of time to prepare for the next one (France in April), and it's time to sharpen our weapons for great battles to come. Usually painters would relax now and figures would be started too late... but not this time!!! My friend Elías Alonso (Morsa) and me have created a little Excel datasheet to control time and hours left to prepare our expected entries, so we are able to have a realistic approximation regarding the madness or not of our painting expectations. I know it's quite geeky, but it's what we engineers do to take advantage of our ability to organize things, so we can use it in our benefit in the next contest. I'll talk about this datasheet and my plans in the days to come, stay tuned!!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

The last journey of Éowyn the Traveller

Two days remaining for our trip to Italy! Unfortunately, my extremely busy life nowadays has obliged me to quit from the idea of entering the space wolf I was preparing. Too bad. Anyway, it will not end as a dead project. I left it in the modelling phase, but the whole idea of the figure is totally considered already. I expect the wolf to be one of the figures I will be presenting in Golden Demons to come (France in April presumably, or else, Spain in May).

So my beautiful lady Éowyn will be once again herald of my little army (and once again, the only one). For her fourth attempt in battle (hopefully the last), and if I can make some time before this weekend, I will be giving some final touches to the base, some Rohan freehands which I think might suit very well.

I would like to close Éowyn’s history this weekend. She sort of represents my life as it was more than six months ago, and it’s a chapter to be left definitely in the past. Enjoy your last trip milady!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Slayersword Golden Demon UK 2009

Golden Demon UK 2009 was celebrated last sunday. We are beginning to see photos of the figures entered, this is the one which won the Slayersword. It's a beautiful conversion of an imperial character, with a style I really love. The idea of a clock-maker with all those little clocks, the books, the artifacts and all those crazy details extremely taken care of, is awesome. Congratulations Ben Jarvis (rocketandroll)!!!

Enjoy ;)

The spanish painters could only gain one silver demon, awarded to David Rodríguez (Karaikal), which is not as bad as you may think because we will be having his presence again in contests! He announced last year that he was giving up painting for a while, but now he's back, let's hope that he returns with the same strength as always! We'll see his ork soon. And there is also a Duel from Julien Casses which I will post when we get better photos.

Friday, September 18, 2009

New Star Wars Line from KnightModels

At last! KnightModels is releasing its Star Wars line shortly. They have presented the first 4 figures and I have to say they are amazing!! 70 mm scale, too big for me, but I'm seriously thinking on painting them. They have also announced they will be releasing a 30 mm scale line for Star Wars in Christmas. Great!!!

Here I post you figures of these first four figures, they are painted by José Manuel Palomares (JMPN; Anakin and Darth Maul are his), J.J.Flashman (he doesn't want to reveal his true identity; Luke and Yoda are his) and Alfonso Giraldes (Banshee; Han Solo is his). The sculptors are Alfonso Gozalo (Han Solo) and Jerome Renaud (the other three).

I also leave you a photo from their last Marvel release. Simply awesome!!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Brother Fonsel Step by Step

Here I present you a Step by Step article on how I painted my Brother Fonsel, a figure which you can see here in the gallery. I hope you make the effort of reading it. You will enjoy it very much as it has photos from the very beginning of the process, because in fact, I usually concentrate very much on the pre-paint stage of my figures, much more than in the painting part. I don’t paint miniatures directly from the box very often. Normally they are conversions more or less complicated, looking for a certain pose, an effect or a sensation.

As time passes by, I have realized that I put much more effort on achieving this different pose, this special front view or that interesting composition rather than choosing this or that colour when painting the figure. You will notice this in the last 3 figures which you will see posted on the web (Brother Fonsel, Malus Darkblade and Tribute to the Fallen), they have much effort put in this first stage rather than in the painting. I don’t know if this is anything bad, but this happens to me and I know that one of the things I have to improve in is dedicating more time in the last stages of my painting (we always get to contests in the last minute, painting the day before and all those things we do).

When creating Brother Fonsel I wanted a simple miniature to take to a single category, and never before had I painted a loyal Space Marine, so this was the perfect opportunity. The idea comes from Brother Joshel from mi master Alfonso Giraldes (Banshee), a figure which is a conversion of an Artemis from the Inquisitor catalogue. The marine bases its pose in this figure from Banshee. I always liked the idea of a Space Marine running with a flag waving with the wind, and Brother Joshel is great, but I thought it would have been better if the sensation of movement and speed was greater.
With this as a starting point, I began my job. These are the first photos of the experiment:

The head is the same as the one from the special edition Space Marine from Games Day 2006, modelled by Juan Díaz, which I think is a very good one and has great possibilities for painting.
To try and see how the flag would look like, I sticked a post-it to a bit of wire (this is not the final pole of the flag) and I folded it conveniently simulating the waves which more or less I considered a flag would have in this position. However, the post-it was not enough. Because of the pose, the flag would have a very strong folding close to the pole so that the upper border of the cloth was parallel to the movement of the marine. This folding couldn’t be modelled in the post-it so I left it more or less indicated and tried the different poses with it.

These are the first steps of the creation, many pieces are glued together with blu-tack simply to see how the pose works and to try different options. Many times this may suppose that you achieve a pose you like, you remove the blu-tack and when you glue it definitely you realize that you could not redo the pose you had before. That really can demoralize you. This is a good reason to start making photos during the process, but of course, it takes time. In the next step you can see how I changed a few things about the marine, such as the height where he carries the sword, or the position of the arms.

After talking to a few colleagues, I realized that the torso was too much tilted aside and although it’s a space marine, it’s quite unnatural, so there you have another change made.

With the pose more or less decided, I started the modelling of the standard. This was the part which worried me the most because I was not convinced about the form of the waves and I wasn’t sure if I was going to succeed in modelling those waves with the standard modelling process of a flag I had been doing in the past. This typical process consisted of doing a plasticine bed with the form of the waves. Over this bed, I would put a fine piece of Milliput and then with a brush I’d give slight strokes on it so that it gained the shape of the plasticine waves. Because of what I said before about the difficulty of the folding and the edge of the flag being parallel to the ground, I was not convinced about doing the flag by using simply the plasticine bed. Therefore, I decided to try new methods of my own invention until I found the one I liked most. And that is how it happened, that I had to model 9 different flags to perfect the method until I got the one which fitted. This happens when you start investigating, and then the usual friend comes and says, “why haven’t you used a piece of tin?”, to which you answer nodding and thinking you have been a miserable fool. But you learn with these mistakes and that is why the next standard was done directly with a piece of tin (the one in Tribute to the Fallen).

The experimental process leaded me to a new method of modelling standards, at least new to me. I kneaded the putty until I got a fine piece of flat and thin Milliput. Then I cut it with the shape of the flag. Next, I rolled the edge over the pole and crushed the putty there to stick the flag to the pole. Then I put the flag into the oven just to give it a bit of heat so it hardens and becomes not too hard but flexible enough to fold and keep the shape (the time in the oven was something I perfected as I repeated each attempt of the standards). After this, I put the pole on the space marine to get the position of the flag and directly with my fingers I folded the standard to get the shape desired. It’s quite a chaotic way of working, but it resulted in success, after 9 attempts I got to the good one. I have to say that the fact that I was not sure at all about how the waves had to be and that is why I had to repeat it so many times, but anyway, in the end it all ended well and that what matters. Here are photos of three of the versions which went wrong, and two photos of the version which I used finally .

In the last photos you can see that I changed the sword and that I started painting it all black. Well, this is because in the beginning I was thinking of painting it as a Black Templar, and so I changed the chain sword for a normal one which fitted the chapter more. When I saw how sad the space marine would feel painted all in black, I decided to repaint and recover the original chain sword. I think this was no mistake because if it had stayed in black, it would have never become the Lemon Marine! (as I kindly call it).
Therefore, using the same yellows which I already used in the Nob Ork, I repainted over the black. The base is Golden Yellow and Bestial Brown from Citadel, highlighted with Golden Yellow and Ice Yellow from Vallejo, and shadowed with Bestial Brown.

I decided to paint the edges of the armour in black. I think it’s quite a good scheme.

Then I painted the freehand of the shoulder pad. I was inspired by an Imperial Fist symbol which I saw in a standard from a figure in coolminiornot. I really liked the fact that it seemed to be carved into the armour rather than just painted, so I try to simulate the effect.

Now I put photos of the base I used. I wanted something which would not be a problem to paint and which wouldn’t distract the attention from the important things: the face of the marine and the flag. And I won’t try to fool you, bases are not the things which I like to do best in a miniature!

With everything in line, I mounted the flag in its position and painted it in the base blue colour with airbrush, to see the effect of the composition. The blue is a Turquoise from Citadel.

Seen that I liked the composition, I began the painting of the flag, which again seemed to be the most complicated part of the painting process. The design of the standards was courtesy of my friend Arturo Serrano (obiart). He offered to create a design in Photoshop because his job consists of things like this. So with a few basic indications from my part (idiosyncrasy of the Imperial Fists, symbols they use and predominant colours of the flag) he created this wonderful design in Photoshop:

As you can see, the design is very good, and the task of painting when you have the concept very clear is much simpler. In fact, I don’t advise you to paint a standard with no previous design at all.

The painting process has a lot of engineering from my part. I planned all the steps of the process in the most efficient way possible to optimize the job. What I did is mentally divide the design of the flag and cut out some airbrush templates so that you have the basic shapes of the drawing to have all the elements well placed in the flag, which is in the end the most important thing to bear in mind when painting this type of freehands. It’s very similar to what happens with sculpture, if the mannequin is badly placed, there is no way of fixing the error later. It’s basic to have all the elements well placed.

And now we start with the painting with normal brush. This has no secret at all, you paint the same way you would paint a miniature, giving lights and shadows, with the difference of having a previous design, which indicated the spots where the lights should be and makes the work really simpler.

With the back part the job is the same. Airbrush templates to place the elements where they have to be. With the template normally you leave quite a dirty finish if you don’t control the technique, so afterwards you have to go over it with normal brush.

All that is left is to continue until we get to the final drawing!

Afterwards I gave general shadows to the whole flag with airbrush. I should have taken into consideration how the lights affected the flag while I was painting the freehand, and this is one of the reasons why the flag lacks contrast at the end of the process. This is something I learnt and then applied with more or less success in the standard of Tribute to the Fallen.

These were the last photos I took during the process. The rest of the figure are basically scratches which I’m sure you are tired of reading tutorials on how to do them, and anyway they are not very well done in this marine. Perhaps the most interesting part of the rest of the process is that in the end, I found out that the yellow and the turquoise contrasted too much, and was very clear to the eye that the flag and the marine had been painted separately. This is a big ambience issue which I solved in quite an easy way. With airbrush, I gave glazes of turquoise all over the marine, and, with yellow, I gave glazes all over the blue of the standard. The whole figure became greener, but it can’t be appreciated unless you see the photos of the process, and it really helps to integrate the flag and the marine together.

I leave you the final photos of the marine and the close-up of the standard so you can see how the thing ended.