25 September 2017

The Joker "TwE" - Prepwork IV: Finishing the Face

For the first time, I am all-but-convinced that the end is truly in sight. This evening, I concluded work on three areas that were less than I had envisioned: the eyebrows; the cheekbones, and the left masseter muscle. The corrections were less anatomical in nature than artistic: the face, in my eyes, was simply off-balance/asymmetrical. 

There is still the final finishing to be done, but hopefully the putty-work is done--or nearly so. . . 

Stay tuned!

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

24 September 2017

Lady Stoneheart -- Painting - Basing

In anticipation of the imminent transfer, I prepared the display base to receive the bust yesterday. And now the bust is permanently mounted upon its final resting place.

This is the fourth bust/figure that I have transferred with a significant amount of work remaining. While it requires a more comprehensive "masking" of the base to protect its relatively delicate finish, the perspective it affords is well-worth the additional effort.

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

Williamsburg Handmade Oil Colors

Yesterday, I received four colors (of a 175+-color line) by this manufacturer, and I am VERY im- pressed--and pleased!

Originally out of Brooklyn--and still based in NY state--Williamsburg Oil Colors have a diverse range of competitively-priced colors--especially tertiary--whose texture and consistency suit the miniaturist to a T! I wish I had discovered them earlier in my journey!!

As a sidebar note, the two major garments of the current project--gown and cloak--will be painted with Williamsburg colors.

Definitely worth a look-see. . . 

Back to the bench!

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

Lady Stoneheart -- Painting (II) - The Chemise and Gown: Day 2

Phase 1 of the gown--the base hue--has been completed. The gown will be a 3(4?)-step process, with measured weathering of each of the "layers"--full-strength 'glazing', if you will. 

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

23 September 2017

Lady Stoneheart -- Painting (II) - The Chemise and Gown: Day 1

Phase 1 of the chemise is completed. The bust is now in the oven (low heat) to accelerate the "settling" of the colours.

FOLLOW-UP. . . The chemise is DONE!

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

22 September 2017

Lady Stoneheart -- Painting (I) - Head and Face: Day 3

The face is now all-but-done. I say a-b-d because there will most likely be a few more tweaks, "markers", etc. to be added - or modified - once the visible hair and the hood are finalized, and the collar of the chemise is finished. 

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

21 September 2017

Lady Stoneheart -- Painting (I) - Head and Face: Intermezzo, pt. 2

As anticipated, the hood has been permanently attached--the bust is now fully assembled. I will spend the next few days working on the face--and the lighting. I will probably try to get the che- mise done by the end of the weekend. Then all that will be left to do is the gown and the hooded cloak. . . 

More to follow. . . 
 
When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

18 September 2017

The Hempen Jig -- Ouverture

As I am now full tilt into "The Hangwoman", I thought I would post an image of one of my all-time favourite pieces, "A Date with Jack Ketch". . . 


This is a rather extensive conversion of John Rosengrant's 1/9 scale Pirate Captain bust (Warriors), finished at the eleventh hour of 2007.

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

Lady Stoneheart -- Painting (I) - Head and Face: Intermezzo

As my bench-time is severely limited this evening, what was done hardly merits the coverage of a full "step". . .

Before moving on to Phase II of the face, it would be best to frame the ravaged flesh with what hair there is and/or would be visible. Thus the hair was base/undercoated with Vallejo Silver-Grey.

Tomorrow (hopefully; or Thursday, depending on the volume at work), I intend to apply the oils to the inside of the hood. Once that is dry, I will complete assembly of the bust, and finish the paint- ing of the face and hair.

Stay tuned!

UPDATE 19.09.2017. . . The inside of the hood is now painted. As is the basecoat of oils of the hair. The latter is truly a basecoat that will primarily integrate the hair into the shadows of the hood, and allow me to selectively highlight the visible portions to maximum effect. With any luck at all, the hood will be permanently attached before the weekend. . .

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

17 September 2017

Jon Snow - Painting: Wrapping-up

I am delighted to report that this project is now definitely on the home stretch. . .

  • Snow has been applied to hair and collar.
  • Eyes painted on Longclaw's wolf's-head pommel.
  • Final distressing of leather finsihed.
  • Final outlining finished.
  • The "Brother of the Night's Watch" is DONE!

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

16 September 2017

Jon Snow - Painting: Wrapping-up--Longclaw

Longclaw's handle has been finished and primed--in white (nb: Tamiya), of course. If all goes as planned, I intend to have it permanently mounted on the bust by this time tomorrow. . .

FOLLOW-UP. . . Or not. Things obviously didn't go "as planned". The resin used on the handle appears not to have been mixed thoroughly, which resulted in 'the sweats' and localized delami- nation while the primer was curing. The handle is now in the purple bath to remove the primer and the remaining uncured resin.

More to follow. . .

UPDATE 17.09.2017. . . The handle is now in the oven to check the repairs and to cure the Sty- nylrez primer. While I am thoroughly convinced that the cause of the unpleasant detour was im- properly mixed resin, I cannot discount the possibility of an adverse reaction with a "hot" primer... so I went with an acrylic the second go-round. Assuming all checks out in the next hour or so, I should be back on track by lunch. . . 

FOLLOW-UP. . . Longclaw's handle is now permanently mounted, and the bust is completely assembled! All that remains to be done on the handle are the black eyes of the pommel.

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

Lady Stoneheart -- Painting (I) - Head and Face: Day 2

Phase I of the face/flesh and the wound is now done! As is the left eye!! A very encouraging--and disturbing!--launch of the paint portion of the project!!

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

Jon Snow - Painting: Finishing+

I usually have a very distinct 'Finishing' step and concluding 'Wrap-Up' step; but as we have seen, this project has been anything but conventional. . .

I just finished Phase I oils of the hair, and, save for the painting and attachment of Longclaw's hilt, this project can be deemed completed! I am hoping that it will be completely done within the fort- night, but that will entirely depend on disposable time and how the oils settle. The work that re- mains will be addressed in a 'Wrapping-Up' entry.

Until then. . . 

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

15 September 2017

Jon Snow - Painting: The Collar

You might recall that a significant portion of the prepwork was spent reworking the stock wolf-skin collar which Jon Snow only wore during his "apprenticeship" in the Night's Watch, to the post-induction black kyloe collar, which he wore through this season.

This evening, I basecoated the collar in warm dark/medium grey acrylics. The collar will be a multi-media item with the shading executed in black-ish oils; the midtones in acrylics, and the highlights in oils and acrylics. This will provide the greatest depth and vibrancy to an item that 
is essentially achromatic.

More to follow!

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

12 September 2017

Jon Snow - Painting: The Pedestal

The storm is finally beyond us! Save for some very light rain and the occasional waning gust, Atlanta has ably survived its first tropical storm in recorded meteorological history. Heartfelt thanks to those who reached out to express their concerns and well-wishes.

Now comes the "fun" part! The post-storm clean-up. Kudos to the metro Atlanta power and road crews who have outdone themselves in clearing the major hazards--namely downed trees and power lines. They have also restored about 40% of lost power in highly unenviable--dangerous!-- conditions.

My building was not one of those enjoying power, so I am back home dealing with the intermit- tent power outages and beginning to clean-up the scattered jetsam. And in the interims, I deci- ded to proceed with the chromatic "sketching" of the pedestal. As you might recall, the pedestal was of a thematic nature, representing "The Wall". Nearly all renditions--the boxart a notable ex- ception!--are primarily dark grey/black. . . the wall is mostly ice! So I am beginning to counter- shade, if you will, the bust in acrylics, with the support significantly lighter than the bust it is supporting.

FOLLOW-UP. . . With the acrylic base/undercoat done, I decided to take the watershed step of all projects: permanently mounting the subject on its display base. Much remains to be done--on the bust itself, as well as the pedestal; but the remainder of the work will benefit from the 'display perspective'.  

More to follow!

UPDATE 13.09.2017. . . The pedestal received its targeted application of oils today--Titanium White, Mars Black, UM Blue and Raw Umber. Actually, I could leave it as is, and deem the pe- destal done! But it is only about half-way home. . . Hopefully the oils will be dry by this week- end, so that I can proceed with the final step: Tamiya's Diorama Texture Paint Snow and Pow- dered Snow Effect with Reality-in-Scale's Snow-in-a-Pot!

UPDATE 14.09.2017. . . I apparently very lightly drybrushed the distal edges of the pedestal--the perimeter in contact with the display base--'cause it was bone dry to the touch by the time I got home! Thus, I got a jumpstart on the weekend and the base layer of accumulated snow is now drying! I used Tamiya's Diorama Texture Paint Snow (Snow, not Powdered Snow), which, as you might surmise, is coarser than the Powdered Snow. As I am a "newbie" using this product, I have no idea what it is going to look like once it is dry; but rest assured, regardless of the outcome, you will read abut it here!

UPDATE 15.09.2017. . . The pedestal is now effectively done! And I've become a HUGE fan of the Tamiya DTPs--Diorama Texture Paints. It really couldn't be any easier (read: controllable), and the results are spectacular! Yesterday, I "anchored" the pedestal to the display base with a rela- tively coarse ring of Snow; today I completed "The Wall" with a mix of both Snow and Powdered Snow, reduced as required and/or to taste with MiG's Acrylic Thinner. I fully expect to revisit the pedestal for tweaks to enhance the flow and balance of the piece, but these will be nothing more than touch-ups to achieve a given result.  

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

11 September 2017

Lady Stoneheart -- Painting - Intermezzo

In the course of taking care of a few loose threads on the face, I decided that I will not undercoat the exterior of the hooded cloak until the rest of the figure is fully painted and permanently mount- ed on its display base. Amongst other things, this will allow me to paint the cloak and hood as a unit. . .

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

Lady Stoneheart -- Painting (I) - Head and Face: Day 1

The irises are now DONE! The overpaint in oils, using Liquin as a medium, has been completed. Once dry, I will address the symptomatic conjunctivitis--again using Liquin as a medium. By the time that is dry, I will hopefully have made a decision on how to approach the pupils. . . 

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

10 September 2017

Jon Snow - Painting: Doublet & Mantle

I don't know when I might have a chance to settle comfortably at the bench again, so I decided this would be a painting weekend once the preparatory measures were taken care of. Irma is still over 24  hours away--maybe longer; but the uncertainties re: the velocity and expanse of the wind field, to say nothing of the track, makes this storm a poster child for the old saw: prepare for the worse; hope for the best. Our thoughts and prayers are with the residents of Florida--family, friends, and colleagues.

After doing some minor touch-ups on the face, I went straight to the leather doublet. This morning I painted the "under-doublet": the upper chest panel with the buckles. It actually went a lot quick- er and smoother than I had anticipated. Depending on the meteorological developments this after- noon, I may tackle the mantle and the main panel of the doublet ('plackart') after lunch.

Stay tuned! 

FOLLOW-UP. . . The doublet, including the cross-braces, is now DONE! As is the mantle. The latter will require revisiting once the oils have settled to achieve the tonal and chromatic variance 
I am looking for; but until that time, everything but the fur/hair, whether bovine or human, on the figure is well beyond Phase I Oils.

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

09 September 2017

Lady Stoneheart -- Painting - UCing

The flesh is now undercoated. This entailed stippling various tones of whites and pale greys integrated with darker greys and olive drabs to create an essentially achromatic, mottled finish. 

I also uc'ed the eyes and the teeth, as well as the wound. The facial canvas is now ready to accept oils; but first, complete the uc'ing to properly frame the pallid flesh. . .

FOLLOW-UP. . . The eyes--or rather, the irises--are now done. As with Jessica, these were blocked-in (read: undercoated) using acrylics. Next, I will overpaint the irises in oils; and when dry, proceed with the pupils.

I also uc'ed the interior of the hood. . .

FOLLOW-UP (2). . . The chemise, the underside of the cloak and the pedestal have been uc'd/ painted.

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

06 September 2017

The Joker "TwE" - Painting: Priming

Before addressing the matter at hand, I would just like to say that I have revised the title of this project. Having said that, in the interest of continuity, I will retain the now-'working title'. The new title will be the subject of the concluding post in this arc.

Now. . . the torso is now primed (Tamiya Fine surface Primer-White), and in the oven curing. I am still in the process of final finishing of the head, addressing minor tweaks and points of de- tail. 

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

05 September 2017

Lady Stoneheart -- Painting - Priming

Lady Stoneheart is now primed and on the painting bench!

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

02 September 2017

The Joker "TwE" - Prepwork III

After a long-overdue get-together with a dear colleague and friend, and a Joker-highlights viewing of Suicide Squad, it was time to return to the in-progress bust of Mista J. . . 

The face is now all-but-done. While it would be premature of me to deem the conversion a fait accompli, it is very, very close. I'll have a better idea of when I might be priming in the next 2-3 days. . . 

Stay tuned!

UPDATE 05.09.2017. . . I expect to have this primed by this time next week. 
 
When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

01 September 2017

"The King in the North"

While it is very tempting to break out this kit and continue the arduous trek "beyond the Wall", one Jon Snow project at a time is the indicated course of action.

Also, with Ghost absent since the second episode of S6, I am fairly certain that he will play a relatively prominent role in S8. Thus, I will resume work on this project a few months before the premiere of the final season.

Until then. . . 

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

30 August 2017

Lady Stoneheart - Prepwork II

Save for a handful of "points of detail" to be sculpted and/or refined (e.g., button, lacing, etc.), the hair, and final finishing, Lady Stoneheart can be deemed completed! 

There is still a considerable amount of work to be done, but this falls in the "prepping the canvas" category, as opposed to prepping the figure. You might ask, "What's the difference?" A very good question! The prepping of any well-designed and cast figure--such as this--should be virtually nil; however, prepping the surface using the proposed paint scheme--and palette!--as your guide is a largely overlooked step in the pre-prime prepwork. This bust is all about the "prepping of the canvas"!  

I am hoping to have this bust on the painting bench within the fortnight. . . 

Stay tuned!

31.08.2017-- Hair is all-but-done. Once the hair is completed, I will proceed with detailing the areas of the visible scalp.

01.09.2017-- Button done.

02.09.2017-- Final finishing underway. . .  

05.09.2017-- Lady Stoneheart is DONE!

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

26 August 2017

Lady Stoneheart - Prepwork I

I really don't know what it is about this bust, but it just compels you to invest effort--and most generously rewards your investment. . .

  • The pedestal is now all-but-done. 
  • The chemise is in the finishing stages.
  • The proximal end of the cloak has been roughed-in.
  • The negative shape of the cowl has been roughed-in using clay.
  • The preliminary disfiguring and distressing of the face is underway.

Movin' right along. . .

27.08.2017. . .  
  • Reduced molded hair to final proportions.
  • Cowl completed.
  • Gown roughed-in.
  • Chemise finished.
  • Cloak underway.
28.08.2017. . .  
  • Cloak completely roughed-in; finishing underway.
  • Cowl fitted.
  • Gown completed; finishing underway.

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

25 August 2017

Lady Stoneheart - Prepwork: Intro

As is my wont, involved projects usually find me diving right in, if only to undergo "deep immer- sion familiarization" with the casting and--most importantly--with what lies ahead.

So. . . I immediately broke out the the motor-tools, and started removing the excess material that would be superfluous on Lady Stoneheart. I also addressed the minimal seam-lines--and widened the more-than-anticipated peripheral air-holes: this was obviously a later casting.

Next, I tapped a 1/8"d. hole for the supporting rod (tin solder), and filled-in the air voids. I then roughed-in the pedestal around the supporting rod with MS.

Finally, I indulged in some free-hand "motor-sketching". This is where I take the motor-tool and start lightly carving into the base sculpture. In this session I started working on the pleats and texture of what will be the chemise.

Good start!

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

Lady Stoneheart

It is hard to believe that 4 years ago, Rin at Dark World Creations was putting together the first of what was to be an Anniversary Painting bash commemorating the birthday of his company. Sad- ly--but hardly surprising given today's marketplace--DWC is no more save in our memories. "For one brief shining moment. . . "

And now for something completely different. . .

This weekend will be the finale of Season 7 of GoT. That means that there are but 6(!) more epi- sodes left in the entire saga. The all-too-short Season 8 is supposed to begin filming in October, but the premiere date is at this point uncertain: there is speculation that it may not launch until sometime in 2019! Personally, I would have rather seen a slightly longer--13 episodes--seventh and final season than having two mini-seasons. . .

But I digress. . .

Catelyn, Lady Stark, is the widow of Eddard "Ned" Stark, mother of all the Stark children, and the matriarch of Winterfell. She meets her untimely end at the infamous event known as "The Red Wedding". Her corpse is disposed of in the Green Fork, but it is retrieved three days later by Arya's direwolf, Nymeria. She is then resurrected by Beric Dondarrion, leader of the Brotherhood Without Banners. The resultant revenant comes to be known as Lady Stoneheart. . .  also known as the Silent Sister, Mother Merciless, and/or the Hangwoman.

Lady Stoneheart was one of, if not the most anticipated characters in HBO's GoT. Regrettably, she was "cut" (again!), and one would be hard-pressed to see how--or why!--she might be insinu- ated somewhere in the last 7 episodes.

In lieu of a dramatic realization of this awesome character, I decided to honour it in miniature! I found an issue of DWC's 1/10th scale Jessica bust at a most compelling price, and it will provide the base sculpt of my interpretation of Lady Stoneheart.

More to follow!

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

22 August 2017

Jon Snow - Painting: Reflections

A few comments, if I may. . . 

Painting the face off the figure is definitely the way to go. . . BUT, I would not try to finish it until it is [permanently] attached to the torso. The all-black costume is ultra-high contrast to the overall pale fleshtone, and the latter must be moderated en suite. Off the figure, the complexion looked too ruddy; but once attached, it was just about right. Yet another reason why glazing was the optimal technique!

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

21 August 2017

Jon Snow - Painting: Intermezzo I

While 'glaze 1' settles on the face, I decided to get ahead of the game and paint the neckwrap and the mandarin collar of Jon's doublet. This is very much the first step, especially for the neck- wrap; but once the flesh is done, I will be free to permanently attach the head to the torso, and immerse myself in a tonal textural exercise in black. . . 

When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003

20 August 2017

Jon Snow - Painting: Face

I have completed painting Jon's eyes; and have applied a Burnt Umber/Ivory Black grisaille over the flesh. 

Given the relatively quick drying time (read: short working time) of the flesh palette, I may have to take a pure glazing approach to maximize the tones and depth that I have envisioned. . .  

21.08.2017. . . Phase I (glaze) of the face is done. This is not an easy face to bring to life--it is difficult to lay out the plan, and nigh unto impossible to follow it. Definitely a painting challenge!
FOLLOW-UP. . . Phase II (glaze) is done. Highlighting and touch-ups are next!

22.08.2017. . . The face is effectively done--and permanently attached to the torso! I can now begin integrating and adjusting the tonal values against the virtually achromatic "frame".


24.08.2017. . . Save for some minor touch-ups (e.g., outlining the eyes), the face is DONE! Final moderation was carried out with Flake White lightly tinted with transparent 'raw sienna' hues. If there was ever a miniature that was the embodiment of "It's all about the face", this is it! Do your research, and be very selective about your references!!
   
When the cost of a hobby exceeds the fun and doesn't attract new people, the game is over.” -
Oscar Koveleski, August 2003