Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy new year!

The time has come. Goodbye 2011!

2011 is leaving and a new year begins. Let 2012 be at least as good as 2011!

I am celebrating new year's eve in New York (thus the photo in Times Square), and I will be in the US (San Francisco) for the first two weeks of the year because of work, so again, no miniature related activity will be done these days. Not the best way to begin the year for the blog, I know! But I will return and I'm sure I'll have a lot of stuff to share with you guys.

Enjoy in the meantime! And I wish you all a wonderful 2012.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Do Not Miss: December 2011

This great 2011 ends, and before it does, let's review the best I've seen in the internet on December 2011:

  • Normandy 1944" by Pedro Fernández: Rafa Coll shows us on his blog (as usual) the process photos of this wonderful miniature by Pedro Fernández.

  • Kifaro from Studio McVey: This new miniature is a Rhinotaur by Allan Carrasco, once again a superb sculpture. We expected no less from him!

  • Jabba the Hutt by Romain Van der Bogaert: This new release from Knightmodels is modelled by Romain and Alfonso Gozalo (Alfonso modelled Leia while Romain did everything else in the scene, including Jabba). Romain now shows us photos of the process of sculpting this wonderful kit.

  • V day by Jorge Jaldón: I saw this entry on Rafa Coll's blog. It's a beautiful diorama showing us how there is still a lot to be done in historical miniatures apart from just soldiers and weapons. This scene depicting a victory parade is just beautiful.

  • Realistic spiderwebs by Raffa: Simple but great tutorial on how to create very realistic spiderwebs, on Massive Voodoo, as always.

  • Eleriel and Alaniel by Angel Giraldez: I follow Mr. Giraldez a lot because he has a great production rate of painted figurines for artboxes and brands, but this time I was surprised by this piece, for the company Raging Heroes. It's true that the photos are very bad, but I can guess this is a great piece.

Monday, December 19, 2011

WIP Artscale Imperial Fist part 1

Today I start this WIP series of articles about the painting of this Artscale Imperial Fist created by Simon (Master of the Forge).

It is an Imperial Fist, so I will be painting him in a scheme based in yellow and black. It is a Deathwatch space marine, somehow related to the Inquisition, thus the symbol on the left shoulderpad. This will be the chosen colour scheme:

Yellow is a difficult colour to deal with so I think this is a very interesting process where you can see how I deal with it.

First of all, white priming with Gunze Sangyo flat white with an airbrush. The perfect way to prime in my opinion.

Now, first coat of sunburst yellow, the middle tone, by airbrush. I will be using the tecnique we call "reserving the lights". This means I will give this first base of yellow but not as a uniform coat all over the miniature. Instead, I will paint everything except the areas which will be in light, leaving the white coat which is underneath. This is based on the fact that lighter colours always cover better over other light colours, so I will get a brighter finish if I just paint lights over pure white instead of over a coat of the middle tone (base colour).

And after this, I'll start the shadowing process on the yellow, airbrush again. First, adding a bit of bestial brown to the yellow base.

Second shadows with more bestial brown.

Last shadows with bestial brown adding a little bit of blue, but not too much.

Once I'm satisfied with the overall yellow, I start working on the shield. Even if I am not satisfied entirely with the yellow, I would reccommend passing on to something else, because once the surrounding areas start getting some colour, we will probably see things differently. I want to paint the fist in the shield, in black colours. As it is a big surface, I'll use the airbrush again. So first of all, I'll mask the areas I don't want to paint, with masking tape and also liquid mask for the most difficult parts to mask.

I'll paint the black starting on the lightest colour and then going down progressively to the shadows. Again, this is because I find easier to paint lighter colours over white than over dark colours. So, airbrush in the lightest colour of black, which would be a mid grey to which I'll add a bit of sunburst yellow to ensure coherency with the rest of the miniature.

Adding some black to the mix, next step. This would be our base tone for the black.

Final shadows with pure black. I'll add a bit of blue to certain areas, with the normal brush, so that I add depth to the black.

And now I'll take the masks off.

Leaving the airbrush apart, I'll give black to the parts that will be in that colour. In this step I even give lights and shadows to the blacks in the chest eagle, with the same colour scheme I used in the fist of the shield.

And that's it for today. Stay tuned!

WIP Artscale Imperial Fist part 2

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Painting with... Rémy Tremblay

Now that I'm back from my week vacation in NYC, and following our line of interviews to Slayersword winners of 2011, today I bring you the winner of the french Slayersword, the very well known Rémy Tremblay. Professional painter and sculptor, he currently works for a lot of miniature companies all over the world. He has an extraordinay portfolio and a lot of works done in his career. If you follow Volomir's Blog often (as you should) you fill find that he is practically always mentioned in my monthly section Do Not Miss. Let's talk a bit with him and see what he thinks about the miniature world.

    Volomir: Rémy, when would you say is the moment when you started to paint and sculpt miniatures seriously?

    Rémy: First of all I'm sorry about my poor english, I only hope that English speaking people won't lose their eyes. I began painting minis 9 years ago I think... In fact with the first release of the french magazine "Ravage" , maybe with white dwarf 89. For the sculpting process it began with my big diorama, "le serment du Graal", 2004.

    Volomir: Have you learnt to paint and sculpt all by yourself, have you attended courses, or do you have some sort of personal master?

    Rémy: I'm self taught boy, as we are when making silly plastic toy painting :D. I followed a 4 year course at the Beaux Arts in france in my little city. But nothing about miniatures all those years.

    Volomir: Your works are mainly fantasy themed, but we also see more historical works from you. Which do you prefer, historical or fantasy?

    Rémy: I prefer fresh stuff, fantasy of historical doesn't matter. These days I want to paint crappy board game figures and sculpt fantasy minis for wargaming. Precise painting is too much for me.

    Volomir: Which do you consider is your best work so far?

    Rémy: Latest job :). I don't know, I like to make the minis but when done they don't have any interest apart sharing it ith other people. But to answer your question I would say the Cuchulainn figure.

    Volomir: When did you decide to become a professional artist? Is miniature painting/sculpting your goal or do you want to shift to something else in the future?

    Rémy: A friend of mine recently say to me that I was speaking about that at the age of 12 when I was watching X-files and playing heroquest. After 2 year of wasting my time with biology study I decided to become professional, so I followed the artistic path, mainly to conform to my parents wishes about study :). I don't have any ambitious professional project now. I'm enjoying my job and I will pursue it until I will be bored by minis. I will probably make some toys or big scale sculpture, more artistic stuff, anything that will be fresh at that time.

    Volomir: Your diorama, Slayersword in France 2011, was an outstanding piece, something huge which required a lot of work and time put into it. How long did it take you to create something so big? Did you have all the diorama planned beforehand?

    Rémy: It took me 9 month to achieve this in my spare time. At the very beginning it was just about making a cool Skaven vehicle. I like to let my projects live their own life, being attentive to little detail and emphasis it is my way to go. Everything planned is everything frozen if you don't take care. So freestyle with an initial idea is cool, but risky, you can lose your goal or messing everything with volumes or painting.

    Volomir: People often prepare great works to compete for the Slayersword. They consider all the aspects, such as size of the entry, trend topics, or commercial decisions. Do you think there is a specific formula to enter competition to aim for the Slayersword?

    Rémy: As you may know I was seeking for the slayersword for many years. I think I don't understand anything about the golden demon competition. I followed my path, I finnaly got my chance to win the Sword. The only rules this year were "only GW minis".

    Volomir: Can you tell us something about your upcoming projects? Is there something as big as the diorama coming in the near future?

    Rémy: In the near future I will paint 40 or 50 boardgame minis to play. I don't want to do competition anymore, It's really a painful process to have deadline and motivation all along the way. There are so many ace painters and sculptors, they do very good stuff, I think I don't have anything to bring to mini's world for now. My ideas are for too complex or time consuming to even think to begin one. Maybe a big project will be born, only time will tell.

    Volomir: And finally, last but not least. I’m sure any painter new to the hobby is eager to hear some counsel from one of the best artists currently. Do you have anything to say to help someone who is starting now and would love to win a Slayersword someday?

    Rémy: If you want to win in competition you have to put a limit then outstep it, step by step. You couldn't be good in one week, it takes years of dedication to minis. The best way to have a strong style is to try anything new for you, painting faster for gaming, painting with NMN, TMP, mix of both, vivid color, monochromatic scheme, using pigments, airbush... Fill your toolbox with everything you can learn. Read books about modelling, painting, sculping, art, play video game, draw and dream... Be rude with yourself, we make crap all the time but from crap to crap some people could find those pretty cool :).

    You want to be good, you have to work, it's the only way to go.

    Thank you for reading ;)

Thank you very much Rémy! He left us a lot of interesting comments. Let's see what he is able to create in the future, and I wish him the best on his professional affairs. Meanwhile, you can follow Rémy on his blog:

Rémy Tremblay Art

Until our next meeting!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Back to the City

The next few days I'll be travelling to New York City again, so I'm afraid there will be no miniature activity until I return.

My life is been a bit crazy lately, I am changing jobs and travelling quite a lot. As I said, I'll be in NYC until December 12 and thanks to my new job, I'll also be travelling to NYC and San Francisco from December 31 to January 16. I guess I won't have much time to do some miniature painting work but I'll do my best.

Even so, I won't leave you without good stuff on the blog since I am still doing the 2011 Slayersword interviews, so stay tuned!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Do Not Miss: November 2011

Seen in the internet on November 2011:

Monday, November 28, 2011

Painting with... Vincent Hudon

I'm starting a series of interviews with Slayersword winners of 2011. The first to go is USA's Slayersword winner, Vincent Hudon. I'm sure you know about him, he's one of the classics, the author of probably the most famous Khorne Paladin on Juggernaut, also known as Magmatrax. Let's see what he has to tell us about his vision of the miniature painting world!

    Volomir: Vincent, you are one of my favourite painters of all time. When I started painting I used Magmatrax as the goal for what I wanted to achieve someday. A lot of time has passed since then, but I still see Magmatrax as a classic from the past, a piece in which future generations will look back to. Talking about the past, when would you say is the moment when you started into painting miniatures seriously?

    Vincent: I picked up the hobby around August 2003. A work mandate required me to go work secluded in the woods away from friends and family for 2 years. I figured I needed a hobby for spare time and came upon the miniatures of GW in a game store and was intrigued. Bought myself a squad of Chaos marines and a few paint pots and painted my first miniature. Took me 20 hours but the impressed look in my fiancé’s eyes got me hooked: I decided I would paint myself an army to play. I searched the net and found many helpful websites such as There they held a small painting contest which I entered with a squad and won! From that point I became determined to find a way to paint models like the amazing stuff that was appearing over the web. I also came upon around that time and discovered there was a whole community of painters openly willing to answer questions and help! That is also when I learned of the Golden Demons. Being of an overambitious nature, I decided I would go all out and make the most daring project I could challenge myself with. I had 4 months until Golden Demons Toronto, Canada 2004. I loved the Juggernaut model but always felt it had more potential than the generic static posture. Those who read my first tutorial will know the rest. I converted the model, and decided to try NMM for the first time as this was a project to challenge myself. You don’t learn from performing what you already know you can achieve. You learn by raising the bar and reaching for it. So I tried, failed, tried again, read some more online, carefully observed pictures of other people’s work, until I made progress. As I painted Magmatrax, I went back numerous times to previously painted areas to further improve as my practice was bearing fruit. That is when I believe I became serious about painting miniatures.

    Volomir: At that time, a more obscure period in which internet began to flourish to gather all painters around the globe, you must have developed your techniques from somewhere. Have you learnt to paint and sculpt all by yourself, have you attended courses, or do you have some sort of personal master?

    Vincent: I learned mostly by observing pictures of great models online. I discovered discussion forums, first on, then CMON. I spend countless hours browsing pictures of models, to this day every few months I go through CMON for all the new miniatures posted, and save to an archive the pictures of models that inspire me, sometimes it is just the posture, the way the skin was made, or the design of a weapon (your very own High Elf Flag bearer on a Lion is one of my favorite references for great ambiance and lighting as well as the overall composition of the piece). I also asked a lot of people specific questions about how they achieved such parts of their models. Just about everyone answered me, and that is how I progressed. That is also why to this day I always answer people’s questions about the hobby, even though I feel somewhat outdated, seeing how painting has progressed in the last few years. I learned from the community of painters, so I want to give back to the community what I can. Additionally, I joined a group of like-minded individual called at the time Team Montreal, which as a chance to chat and partake in a painting class performed by Jérémie Bonamant (a.k.a. Bragon). This French painter was my first exposure to advanced techniques like color, desaturation and zenithal lighting. The next year, we invited over Allan Carasco to Montreal for a similar painting class. This exposure thought me the most valuable lesson of all: there is no right way to paint a miniature, just different approaches. When you are at your beginnings in painting miniatures, this can be a frustrating statement; If only there were a clear recipe to proceed! But from this statement, I learned that improving means trying different techniques and approaches. So I pursued different challenges with my subsequent Golden Demon projects. Regardless of what the judges thought of my models, if I could learn something new on each one, then I couldn’t lose.

    Volomir: Your NMM are an all-time reference, and your World Eaters a poster for all Khorne theme lovers. Have you finished your Khorne-Gold NMM relationship forever or will we see more pieces on this theme in the future?

    Vincent: Though I would caution putting so much significance on my humble work, those are mighty flattering words! I have a very large Chaos marines army, as I enjoy playing the game as much as creating models. Some are fancy, and some are simply for gaming. My projects follow my gaming needs, as every model I paint is meant to be played on the tabletop. Lately, and ork army of mine needed a Warboss, hence my Biker warboss project in Chicago 2011. I have thought of doing an updated version of Magmatrax 2.0, using what I have learned since I made the original, but I am concerned that it would simply be repeating what I have already done, and challenging yourself with something new is the way to go forward for me. That being said, although my NMM tutorials may be a decent starter for someone interested in learning, they are now 7 years old and quite outdated. I have seen many painters achieve NMM far beyond my own attempts of the past and I feel somewhat …intimidated. I could certainly stand to learn a lot more about NMM. When GW releases a new army book for Chaos and Khorne inspires me once again, perhaps I will attempt another challenge back into NMM.

    Volomir: We see fantasy themes in all of your works, but have you ever tried historical? Do you like it?

    Vincent: I know that the historical scene involves professional painters and their work with light and colors can be absolutely amazing. Perhaps because these painters have been at it for many more years than the fantasy painters have? Though I admire the work they do, the realistic, historical scene holds no interest for me to work on. Why recreate everyday, realistic life, when you can create the new, imaginative and unusual? The historical setting for me restricts creativity, and it is this ability to bring imagination to physical form that passions me about the hobby.

    Volomir: Apart from heavily converting (and nearly full scratching like your work on Lord Graviax), have you tried completely sculpting from scratch just using wire or a mannequin? If not, do you think you will be going for that in the future?

    Vincent: Yes! Wire frame sculpting to me is the ultimate goal, the ability to create anything with no regards for a pre-existing range of models to work from. I have started sculpting on a 32mm scale wire frame and am learning as I go. I have attached a picture of my progress so far (I damaged the green base as I molded copies to practice on unfortunately). The goal is a dark elf witch elf in a running pose. Recent events in my life had me put a lot of my hobby time on pause but I hope to complete it for a future Golden Demon.

    Volomir: As I said, I am completely in love with Magmatrax, since always, but maybe you have a different favourite from your collection. Which do you consider is your best work so far?

    Vincent: Favorite and best work are two different things. Magmatrax is probably my favourite because of its sentimental value. Looking at it I remember those 400-some hours spent learning and relentlessly fixing things. It holds a lot of significance for me; it is my first serious project, the one I learned most on and the one that got me noticed, at a time when NMM was just becoming popular in the fantasy miniature world in America. My latest model the Warboss Roadrippa is a close second favourite, looking at his silly expression makes me smile. It is in my opinion my best work, from design, conversion/sculpting and paintjob. The design of a model, its features and lines, focal point, its posture and story-telling elements are what interests me most about making models, and I made sure to cram a many little ideas around the model as I could fit. I also believe it is my most refined paintjob, but you have to look at it in person to agree with me, pictures online are only pictures…

    Volomir: Do you consider painting as a hobby or do you have any professional interest towards miniatures? Do you take commission painting jobs?

    Vincent: Painting and converting miniatures is a hobby for me. Up to recently I have turned down offers for commission work, because I have very limited time to spend on this hobby and I do not want it to become a second job on models that wouldn’t inspire me. As for selling the models I have already made, it would have to be a substantial amount; by the time I am done painting them, I have grown attached to them; besides, I need them in my armies! Lately Airbrushed a Forgeworld Chaos Reaver Titan and enjoyed the result; as such I would consider offers to paint Larger Forgeworld pieces for people looking for a centerpiece for their armies. Message me if you are interested at ;)

    Volomir: You won the Slayersword many times, in Canada and in USA. Are you planning to come to Europe to compete here?

    Vincent: I would like to make the trip overseas to live the experience of a European Golden Demon, friends who have been have loved the turnout of models and left terrified of the competitive level. I have a few projects in mind that would like to present for such a trip, but I still need to experiment a bit more before I attempt those projects. Perhaps in the next few years if life allows, it would be great to come over and meet with my European brethren.

    Volomir: Here’s a difficult question. There has been always a lot of talking about the GD painting level difference between Europe and America. Regarding what you know and see from contests abroad, do you think this is true? From your overseas point of view, how do you see the painting community in America?

    Vincent: Yes, a lot of arguments over this. I can’t deny that there seems to be greater quantities of top level miniatures being presented in Europe than North America. But does quantity of amazing models mean higher quality? Here in America, I have met lots of passionate hobbyists that like to share and show off their latest work. They are proud yet humble about it, and very few are actually misguided into thinking they made the hottest model around. The sad thing is that sometimes people will judge or mock winning models, based on unflattering pictures, claiming that they are not “worthy”. These people seem to forget that winners did not demand to win, nor did they proclaim they were the best; they simply were picked by judges. Pride in one’s accomplishment does not imply that one believes it superior to others. In Europe the community seems to mingle more than in America, perhaps because the distances are greater between painters in North America. Internet has lessened this gap, but I do feel that Europe has had a head start by meeting and exchanging on the hobby. The historical scene is also more prevalent in Europe, and I am sure that it has helped fantasy painters progress. I also think Europe has more painters. In north American, painting toy soldiers is somewhat frowned upon by “the cool kids” and is generally marginalized. Is that so in Europe? The turnouts are bigger at European Golden Demons, and that means more great entries. Additionally, what the world sees and judges are pictures of models, and sometimes the pictures are unflattering or the judging is made to favour a certain style or tendency (GD is a GW marketing venue after all). I have often seen models of greater technical skill and inspiration set aside for models less impressive, but perhaps more suited to the GW ethos – and those are the models the world sees. That being said, there are gems and surprises everywhere in the world, and I do feel that some of the best in North America can stand with the greats of Europe. Outnumbered, yes, but not entirely unmatched.

    Volomir: Can you tell us something about your upcoming projects?

    Vincent: I can tell you of the projects in my mind, yes, but with no guarantee they will ever be completed! The warboss on a bike is a project I sketched 4 years ago and only got around to build and paint this year. I just finished a small dark eldar force, and am considering a necron army. On the competitive painting scene, I may end up making a project for display only, with no gaming intentions. I have a diorama in mind involving 2 clashing Dreadknights (one Greyknight and the other a Khorne conversion). Another diorama I have in mind would involve an ork bullying grots, but the details are secret! I also hope to finish my witch elf sculpt, and I have on my shelf a half-converted Ogre Stonehorn I recently picked up. Which one I will complete next is anybody’s guess.

    Volomir: And finally, last but not least. Everyone has started from the bottom and I’m sure any painter new to the hobby is eager to hear some counsel from you. Do you have anything to say to help someone who is starting now and would love to get to paint like you someday?

    Vincent: If you are starting out and truly are dedicated to elevate your painting, then I want you to understand that you can. I am not an artist, I am an Engineer, science is my thing, certainly not art. But what I lack in talent I make up in dedication and hard work; I am sttuborn like no other. As you say so accurately yourself, no one starts a pro Natural talent will make you learn faster, yes, but hard work will see you through just the same. Do your best on a model, then ask other painters to give you advice on where to go next. Don’t rush, and do not accept “good enough”, go back and fix the mistakes, improve that model. Don’t be discouraged, painting great models takes time, but the more time you put in the better your models and the more you learn. Naturally, you will improve, become faster and that will give you the motivation to push forward. Remember that the only way to get to the next level of painting is to attempt it; no one hits a target above where they aim, so aim high. But you have to want it, and really be serious about improving. The hardest time is at first. As you gain experience and learn techniques, picking up new techniques becomes easier. Now enough reading about me, get back to painting your miniatures!

Thank you very much Vincent! What a great interview filled with awesome thoughts about the hobby and how to improve our level of painting if that is what we are looking for. And remember, keep painting whatever happens!

Stay tuned to the blog to see more interesting interviews about the hobby!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Gimme some horses!

You might have noticed a lack of painting activity on my part lately. Well, I have to say that I have been pretty busy with other stuff in my life, but also sculpting a 54mm model which I cannot reveal yet. But I will... when the time comes! In the meantime, and now that I've got a camera once again, here is a quick shot of what is next in line in my painting table:

Yeah, you know what they are! And also, this is coming next in my painting line, as I told you not so long ago:

Back to painting! Stay tuned...