Big stuff going on with the painting and so on this weekend. Let's get started with the rundown...
The kids and I got to work on that table we were talking about. I got two pieces of celfort side-by-side, glued sand to it and then hacked out a river with an exacto blade. After some painting and drybrushing, I put the Games Workshop "Water Effects" goo in the river,w hich brings us to Mistake Number One: I put the goo on too thick and it dried a bit cloudy. Ah, well... live and learn. At least the kids didn't mind.
Later, I got some more chunks of foam glued together and used the heated wire cutter to carve out a hill and tunnel for the train. I was pretty careful about how I did this, and it worked out nicely. A coat of sand (then a couple coats of watered-down white glue to seal it), and then more paint & drybrush. It's now time to discuss Mistake Number Two: I added some Woodland Scenics underbrush with a bit of white glue. This stuff looks great but, believe me, it will not stick very easily. Whatever it is that you plan to do to keep the WS underbrush on, do 3X as much. Not that it'll matter; you'll still be picking it off your socks for a week anyhow.
I made some more hills out of styrofoam and let the kids paint them. I gave them the choice of adding the sand for texture (takes longer, looks better) or just painting right onto the foam (done quicker, doesn't look as realistic). Naturally, they wanted to go for the quick and easy solution. Mistake Number Three: If you're going to let a 5 and 8 year old paint foam hills, don't turn your back for more than 30 seconds. I was lucky that they didn't end up glazing themselves like donuts, but they slathered so much paint onto the hills that they were literally glued to the newspaper they were sitting on (thank God there was plastic underneath). I fixed it all up, but was scrubbing green paint out from under my fingernails for quite a while, I can tell you.
And now... some pics:
Ok, moving on to my own work... I've started playing around with some Defender Guardians, mixing them with those awesome new Wood Elf models I love so much. Last month's White Dwarf had some conversion tips for people who wanted to try that (especially Alaitoc players, which reminds me of another subject I'll rant about at length later). I tried a Wood Elf/Guardina conversion about two weeks ago and it looked so positively retarded that I couldn't touch them again for those two weeks. It was that bad. The conversions I'm doing now are modest, but looking good. There will be pics sooner or later.
What I really want to do at this point is more modeling and painting which shows originality and "freshness". That is to say, different from my first batch of 48 Guardians, which all look identical. I want Guardians with personality now; different poses, different faces, different clothes, etc. etc. I know the models well enough now to play around and, thanks to a valuable lesson I learned from my buddy Keith, I'm quite relaxed about throwing in bitz from other models without second-guessing myself. Also, because I have all the basic Deimhinn-Sinn Guardians I need, I'm experimenting with other painting schemes and colors to see what I like without feeling the rush of getting the Guardians on the table as part of a whole army.
So... keep an eye out for some (hopefully) cool-looking Guardians soon.
What's that? You want to know what's next for the kids' table? Stay tuned...