The Comm Guild Maelstrom's Edge

Entries tagged [painting]

Hobby Basics: Working with Plastic


Posted on Monday Sep 14, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

This week in our series of hobby basics modeling articles, we're taking a look at what's involved in building plastic models. This article, intended for the beginner modeler, can be found here!




Stay tuned for more!

Painting Tip: Quick-painting with Wood Stains!


Posted on Thursday Aug 20, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

Back in the dim, dark times before Army Painter Quickshades were a thing, gamers seeking to paint their armies quickly had to find other resources to achieve results. One discovery by a hero whose name (so far as I'm aware) is sadly lost to history was this: You can use timber stains as a wash!

Like most 'get'em painted quickly' methods, this likely won't get you a paintjob that is going to win trophies, but if your aim is to get a force painted up as quickly as possible with reasonable looking results, here's an easy way to go about it:




I'm running through this tutorial with two different models, to show the effect over a 'bare metal' model, and one with a multiple-colour scheme - my guinea pigs here being a Karist Trooper and a slightly converted Epirian Contractor Drone. I started out by spraying the drone with Army Painter Platemetal, and the trooper with Army Painter Wolf Grey. Over the grey, I gave the armour plates a coat of Vallejo Emerald, and the straps, pouches, and the strip down the middle of the facemask a coat of Army Painter Ash Grey.



Now comes the magic ingredient: Wood Stain. The particular brand here isn't particularly important. These stains come in a huge range of different colours and finishes, so find one that gives you the effect you want - a black or dark grey stain will give you a dark, shadowed wash, while a dark brown will give an effect more similar to Army Painter Strong Tone or Citadel Agrax Earthshade. I chose a charcoal here, because I thought it would go well over the metal on the drone, and went with a water-based stain to make cleaning up simple. This also made it easier if the stain wound up being too dark and I needed to dilute it, but this turned out to not be necessary in this case.



You can brush the stain on like a regular miniature paint wash, but for the super-speedy option, give the wash a stir to make sure the pigment is all mixed through properly (this is better than shaking it, as it results in fewer air bubbles), and then grab the bottom of the model's base with a pair of pliers or tweezers and just dip it straight in the tin, up to the base. Ideally, don't do this at the kitchen table, as the next bit can get a bit messy...



After dipping the model, pull it out and turn it the right way up to check how much stain is sticking on there. If it looks a bit heavy, give it a shake (I did say this bit can be messy) or blow on it to disperse any big puddles of stain. You can also use a brush to add a little more stain if there is anywhere that looks like it needs some more - use an old brush for this, as the stain can be rough on them. Then set it aside to dry.



It can take a little practice to tell how much stain is 'right' as it settles (gravity works!) and fades slightly as it dries. As mentioned up top, if the end result is too dark, you can dilute the stain - just make sure you check whether you have a water-based or oil-based stain, and thin with the appropriate liquid!



Once the stain has thoroughly dried, you can go back and add any highlights or final details that you want. For my test models, I've added in some pale pink and white on the trooper's eyepieces and the power cell on his gun.



The drone received a light drybrush of silver before I painted in its lenses and insignia. I also painted up a second, tracked drone, which was painted exactly the same way, but also has a layer of Strong Tone over the tracks.



And there you have it! The dipping is slightly less precise than applying a wash by brush, but it can save you a lot of time if you are batch-painting a force in a hurry. A tin of stain also potentially winds up being considerably cheaper than an equivalent amount of bottled washes!



To build your own speed-painting strike force of doom, you can pick up the entire Maelstrom's Edge model range from the webstore here.

For other building ideas, modeling tutorials, army spotlights and conversion walkthroughs, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

What are you working on? We would love to see your models and terrain in the Comm Guild Facebook group!

Hobby Basics - The Beginner Painter's Toolbox


Posted on Thursday Aug 13, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

Last week we ran through the basic necessities for your modeling toolbox. This week, we're having a similar look at what you need to get started painting your miniatures! You can find the article here!




Stay tuned for more!

Painting Spotlight: Colorshift Shadow Walker


Posted on Thursday Jun 04, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

A few articles back, I painted up a Mature Angel using Colorshift paints, as a bit of an experiment. That was actually the second model I attempted with these paints, but I hadn't been entirely happy with the first one. This week, I had a little inspiration though, and so I dug him out and, with a final tweak to his face, wound up with a shiny green/blue Shadow Walker!




The model I painted here is a stock-standard Karist Shadow Walker (No conversion - I know, I'm as surprised as you!). As with the Angel, the armour was painted with Colorshift paints from Green Stuff World. These work best over a gloss black base, so that's where I started, with a quick spray.



Over the armour, I started painting thin layers of 'Emerald Getaway' Colorshift, slowly building up the colour. For the undersuit, I wanted a lighter green, so started with a basecoat of Vallejo Heavy Brown to work down gradually from the black.



I went over the brown with Coat D'Arms Putrid Green, and the belt and weapons with Vallejo Basalt Grey, while continuing to add layers to the Colorshift - It takes a lot of thin layers!



Once I had built up sufficient colour with the Colorshift, I added just a touch of silver on the edges of the armour plates, and some black into the creases, to try to lift them a little, as the shiny Colorshift tends to wash out the detail a bit. I also used some Army Painter Green Tone in multiple, thin layers to shade the undersuit, added a wash of Dark Tone over the weapons and belt, and picked out the helmet lenses and weapon blades with white.



To finish up, I painted the base, added some Basalt Grey highlights to the belt and weapons, and used Army Painter Purple Tone to add an energy shimmer effect to the blades (you can find a tutorial for that here) and shade the lenses.



This was the point where I put the model aside to begin with. While the Colorshift paint was quite effective, if slightly subtle and almost impossible to photograph, on the Angel, on the smaller armour plates on the Shadow Walker it was far more subdued, looking more like really dark shading in weird places rather than a color shift, and making the whole model a bit featureless and dark. I had the idea, though, that picking out the faceplate in a different colour might help to give the model some character. It was fine for the rest of the armour to be a bit dark on the sneaky, teleporty assassin, but I thought this would give him a nice focal point. So I whipped out some more Heavy Brown to re-basecoat over the green, and then used Army Painter Skeleton Bone and white to give him a nice, bone-coloured faceplate!





To give it a go yourself, you can pick up the plastic Shadow Walker kit, along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge model range from the webstore here.

What are you working on? We would love to see what your models and terrain in the Comm Guild Facebook group!



For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Painting Spotlight: Escape Pod Diorama


Posted on Thursday May 21, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

There are a lot of examples out there in internet land of huge, sprawling, super-detailed dioramas that you can pore over for hours and dream of one day having the time (or the storage space!) to make something like that yourself... This is not one of those. Dioramas can also be just a quick, simple exercise in putting together something different to whatever else you're currently working on. I love putting together armies, but sometimes I just want to do something unrelated, or I'll have a little flash of inspiration for a mini scene, and letting that out and building whatever it leads to is a great way of flexing those creative 'muscles'.

That's sort of what happened here. When I put together my kitbashed escape pod a couple of weeks ago, I had the idea to throw together part of a launching bay for it, just to give it something to hang from for the photos. I hadn't originally even intended to paint this, but looking at it sitting on the table afterwards, I decided that it would make for a cute little mini-diorama. So, I broke out a few extra parts, slapped on some paint, and this was the end result:




To get started, I had to snap the escape pod off the hanging struts, as it had been glued in place to photograph it for the previous article. Luckily, I had used superglue here, and it snapped away cleanly without breaking anything. I then finished detailing around the door by adding a thin strip of foamed PVC into the gap between the door and the floor grating, and fleshing out the sides of the doorway with some more PVC and a couple of strut pieces from the terrain sprue to widen it out to match the floor.



A lot of my terrain tends to be rather worn and dirty-looking. I wanted this piece to be old and worn, but not as dirty, simulating a ship or station interior rather than a planet-based facility. To that end, I began painting with a base coat of Army Painter Wolf Grey spray, following by a downwards spray of white. This is sometimes called 'zenithal painting', and is used to allow the spray to natural add highlights and shading as the second spray catches raised areas while leaving the darker basecoat in the crevasses and undersides of detail pieces.



I used Citadel Boltgun Metal to pick out some exposed metal pieces, which I then washed with a layer of Army Painter Strong Tone. On the middle strip on the door, I applied a a coat of Vallejo Heavy Brown and then a couple of layers of Army Painter Pure Red. This was a little messy around the edges, due to the difficulty of painting around the protruding floor piece, so I had to clean up around the edges of the red with a little more grey and white.



At this point, it was time for detailing. I printed up a small sign for the middle of the door and stuck it in place with some PVA glue. On the upper edges of the red door strip, I added a highlight with some old Citadel Titillating Pink, and then applied some sponge weathering over the white and red areas with Army Painter Heavy Charcoal. I went back over the red on the door with some more pink to highlight the edges of the weathering, and blacklined around the white parts with a finepoint black pen to help pick out the details.

My initial intention was to have the floor painted the same as the walls, to accentuate that cleaner spaceship look, but in practice it just killed the detail on the floor grating and made the whole think look a bit bland. So I went back over the floor with some Army Painter Dark Tone, and then gave it a light drybrush with white.



While I wasn't intending to cram a whole heap of docking bay detail into this little diorama, I did want something other than the escape pod in there. I decided to throw in a service robot, assembled from most of an Epirian Scarecrow, with clamp-hands taken from the Master Handler kit and a head made from a trimmed down Firefly Drone' turbine, with an eye lens cut from one of the Scarecrow heads.

The robot was painted with a spray of Army Painter Plate Metal, then a wash of Strong Tone. Over that, I gave it a light drybrush with some more Plate Metal, and then picked out some red bits using the same steps as the red on the door. Finally, I painted in the blue eye lens using some Vallejo Electric Blue, black and white. (You can find a handy tutorial on painting lenses
here!)



The final detail before assembling everything was to print out a picture of the Maelstrom, to glue in behind the door to provide a nice view out the windows. I played around with various orientations of this for a bit to find what looked best, and then trimmed it to fit behind the door and glued it into place with some superglue. With the robot and pod glued in position, the diorama was done!









To build your own escape pod, you can pick up the terrain sprues, along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge model range from the webstore here.

What are you working on? We would love to see what your models and terrain in the Comm Guild Facebook group!



For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Quick and Easy Painting with Washes, redux!


Posted on Thursday May 14, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

Not everyone has the time to spend paintstakingly blending, shading and detailing their models. Sometimes, you just want to get them on the table quickly, so I thought it might be useful to explore some options for fast and painless army painting.

My guinea pigs for this article are some Epirian Suppression Team models, painted exclusively with washes! This is a really easy technique to get to grips with, and while it won't get you an award-winning work of art, it does give you perfectly serviceable-looking models that look great on the table.




For those unfamiliar with them, washes are thin paints designed to sink into the model's crevices whilst leaving less colour on the raised detail (Also sometimes called 'inks' - Not to be confused with 'glazes' which are translucent paints that tint the surface they're painted onto evenly). So while it's a little less precise than blended highlighting or 'juicing' (applying super-thin coats of increasingly dark colour to build up shadow or colour transition), we can use washes over a pale base colour to highlight and shade a model all in one fell swoop. There are a wide range of different washes or inks available, but for this article I'm using Army Painter Quickshades.

I start by giving the model a base coat of white.



Now I'm going to start applying washes to build up the colours I want, leaving the model to fully dry between each. On this model, I've started with a coat of Soft Tone over everything except for the weapons. This is pale enough that other colours will go ok over the top - if you're using darker tones, it's best to try to keep them strictly on the areas where you want them, otherwise you'll need to touch up your basecoat to cover up the overspill before painting each part of the model. Apply a generous coat of wash and leave it to thoroughly dry before moving on to the next step.



Next, I've gone over the armour and chaps with Green Tone, and picked out the boots, belt, kneepads and weapons with Dark Tone. If the colour is lighter than you would like, you can let it dry and then add another coat, as I did with the Dark Tone - this isn't a particularly strong wash, so several coats were needed to get the weapons as dark as I wanted them. You can speed this process up by painting parts that you want to be really 'black' with a medium grey colour before using the wash, but for this article I just stuck with the wash by itself.



I left the tip and front facing of the Shock Baton free of the black wash, as once the black wash dried I applied a coat of Blue Tone to those, which gives a nice energy-glow effect over the white. I also went over the exposed skin areas with Flesh Tone. At this point, I also stuck some sand to the base with PVA glue, washing it with a coat of Strong Tone once the glue dried. Then, to finish up, a quick coat of black around the base edge - you could skip this step by masking off the base edge with tape before painting and then just peeling the tape off at the end.



You can vary the look of the washes by using different base coats. The model below was painted using the exact same process as above, but over a bone basecoat instead of the white.



If you prefer a little more detail, you can go over the washed model with regular paint, picking out features like eyes, belt buckles and the like, and of course you can use different wash colours to suit your preferred colour scheme.





Why not give it a go? As always, feel free to share efforts, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

You can pick up the Epirian Suppression Team, along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge model range from the webstore here.

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Painting Spotlight: Colorshift Angel


Posted on Friday May 01, 2020 at 02:36AM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

Time to build something!

For this week's article, I decided to have a go at a project that I've had percolating in the back of my brain for a while now. I bought some Colorshift paints from Green Stuff World some time ago, because they looked to pretty to not try them out on something, and I thought that they would be just perfect for conveying the otherworldly nature of the Karist Angel. So, I dug out an Angel that I had built way back when the Battle for Zycanthus box was first released and got some paint on it, with this result:




So, the first thing to mention here is that the Colorshift paint gives a really neat, subtle colour effect that is frustratingly difficult to photograph! There's a video at the end of this article that shows the transition effect a bit better than the pics fo, although the purple still looks more subdued than it does in the 'flesh'.

Back to the model! The Angel that I used here was built from the regular plastic kit, with some reposing of the legs and a second claw added on the left, just because I thought it would look cool.



As per the directions for the Colorshift paint, I started out with a coat of gloss black. I don't have an aurbrush, so this was just from a spraycan.



Once the black was dry, I started painting light layers of 'Evil Forest', taking care to leave the forehead so that it would stay a nice, shiny black. Evil Forest is shown on the bottle as a red to green transition, but the red actually comes out a deep purple over the black, which is exactly what I was looking for. I painted it on in light coats using a large, flat brush and brushing downwards to leave the black in the crevasses - traditional highlighting and shading tends to kill the shifting effect, so I was trying for whatever shading I could get.



Once I had built up sufficient colour with the Evil Forest, I added some highlights on raised edges and surfaces using 'Emerald Getaway'. This is a pale greeny-blue to blue shift, so over the Evil Forest it helped to accentuate the green shift a little, although that really doesn't show well in these pics.



To finish up, I painted the base, and painted in the eyes and mouth using some old Citadel Liche Purple, Tentacle Pink and white.











And the aforementioned video rotation:





You can pick up the plastic Mature Angel, along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge model range from the webstore here.

What are you working on? We would love to see what your models and terrain in the Comm Guild Facebook group!



For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Painting Tutorial: Lenses, redux!


Posted on Thursday Apr 16, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

To the new painter, eye lenses, targeting sensors and other shiny 'glass' details on models can seem a little daunting, but it's actually really easy to paint them up to provide a nice focal point on your models. Below, I'll run through five different techniques for painting lenses!




#1: We let an ink do most of the work, here! For all of these techniques, I'm using red. You can easily just subsitute whatever colours you want to paint your lenses to suit your colour scheme.

  1. Paint the lens with a nice, bright red.
  2. Add a small dot of pink in the middle of the lens.
  3. Paint a coat of red ink over the whole lens - I've used Army Painter Red Tone here.




#2: This one's very similar, but lets you create a glass effect on the surface of the lens. This works best for inset lenses. If you seal your models with a matte spray, do that before painting the lenses in this case.

  1. Paint the lens with a nice, bright red.
  2. Add a small dot of white in the middle of the lens.
  3. Dab a small dot of superglue on top to fill the lens cavity. The easiest way to do this is to squeeze out some glue onto a tile or pallet and use a pin to transfer the right amount. It can take a little practice to get just as much as you need. If you get too much and it slops over the sides, you can use a tissue to soak up the excess glue before it dries.




#3: Similar to the first technique, but letting metallic paint provide the contrast for us.

  1. Paint the lens with silver.
  2. Paint a coat of red ink over the whole lens - I've used Army Painter Red Tone here.
  3. This is the same thing, but using Citadel Blood Angels Red Contrast instead of Red Tone. This gives a brighter red, but the silver doesn't show through as much.




#4: Getting more precise with the shading.

  1. Paint the lens with pink.
  2. Using a fine detail brush, add a small amount of red ink to the upper right or left of the lens - Once again, I've used Army Painter Red Tone here. Leave it sitting upside down to dry, if possible, so the ink stays at the top of the lens.
  3. Add a small dot of white in the middle of the ink-darkened area. If the transition from pink to red is a little harsh, you can use a little more pink on a detail brush to gently blend over the line.




#5: The more traditional approach.

  1. Paint the lens with red.
  2. Using a fine detail brush, paint a small crescent of pink onto the bottom left or right of the lens, and a similar crescent of black or dark red into the opposite upper of the lens.
  3. Add a small dot of white in the middle of the dark area. As with the previous technique, if the transitions between colours are a little jarring, you can use a little more red to gently blend them together




And there you have it - five different ways to paint your lenses. Fee free to experiment with these to find the way that works for you. By using different colours, you can adapt these to whatever models you are painting!





Got Robot? We would love to see what you are working on in the Comm Guild Facebook group!



You can pick up the various Epirian robots, along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge model range from the webstore here.

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Painting Spotlight: Helmeted Marsayan Hypnotist


Posted on Thursday Apr 02, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

Marsayan Hypnotists stand out amongst the forces of the Broken, with their gangly limbs and tentacled face. For this week's model, I decided to accentuate the alien-ness of the Marsayan a little more by adding a hazardous environment helmet from Bombshell Miniatures' Counterblast range. This model was actually put together a while back for a Spotlight article on the Marsayan, but this week I decided the time had come to get some paint on it!




There was a little conversion work involved in getting the helmet onto the model. I repositioned the arms and head, and shaved down the tops of the shoulders to provide a reasonably close fit for the bottom of the helmet ring.



I started out the painting by spraying the model with Army Painter Necrotic Flesh.



Over the clothing, I painted a layer of Citadel Gryph-Hound Orange Contrast. I also painted the wrappings and straps with Army Painter Mid Brown ink, and the fur and helmet ring with Army Painter Dark Tone.



For the skin, I added a layer of Army Painter Blue Tone over the Necrotic Flesh. I also painted the armour pads and eyes with Citadel Liche Purple, the helmet ring with Army Painter Ash Grey, and the fur and air tubes with Vallejo Heavy Charcoal.



I added a highlight to the orange with some Vallejo Light Orange mixed with white. I used some more white to highlight the helmet ring and bindings, and to apply a very light drybrush to the tubes and fur. Using some Army Painter Warlock Purple and white, I painted in the mouth tentacles and added a highlight to the purple armour sections. For the metal device on his hip and the cannister on his back, I painted on a coat of P3 Pig Iron, and then a wash of Dark Tone. Finally, I used some black and white to add shading and highlights to the eyes.



To finish up, I painted the base using the same urban scheme as the rest of my Broken force, and then glued the helmet in place.





What have you done with your Broken? We would love to see them on the Comm Guild Facebook page!



You can pick up the Marsayan Hypnotist, along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge model range from the webstore here.

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Modeling Spotlight: Biker Bot Handler Conversion


Posted on Thursday Mar 26, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

Some time ago, I put together a biker conversion for a Bot Handler Spotlight article, which has been sitting in the cabinet ever since, staring at me accusingly when I walk past. Unable to take the abuse any longer, I decided the time had come to get some paint on him, and this was the result:




The model was put together from an Epirian Bot Handler, the chassis from an Epirian Drone, and most of a Citadel Space Marine bike from Warhammer 40000. I carved out the inside of the handler's legs and bent them outwards to fit around the bike seat.



To paint, I started out with a basecoat of Army Painter Wolf Grey spray.



I then blocked in the main colours - P3 Pig Iron for the metal parts, Vallejo Stormy Blue for the bike panels and Handler's uniform, and Vallejo Heavy Charcoal for everything else.



Next, I painted a generous layer of Army Painter Dark Tone over the top of everything, and put it aside to dry.



For final detailing, I highlighted the blue using a mix of Army Painter Ultramarine Blue and white. Over the black, I added a highlight of Vallejo Light Grey, and Army Painter Shining Silver finished off the metal parts. To brighten things up a little, I added some gold using Coat D'Arms Bright Gold washed with Army Painter Medium Brown. For the face, I painted on a coat of Army Painter Barbarian Flesh with some more MEdium Brown, and finally added the red parts with Army Painter Pure Red, shaded with black and highlighted with white.









And that's one biker bot handler, ready to cruise the backroads of the Edge!



You can pick up the Epirian Bot Handler, along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge model range from the webstore here.

As always, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Terrain Spotlight: Crystal Outcrops!


Posted on Friday Mar 13, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

I recently picked up the fantastic Xenos Jungle terrain mat from Deep Cut Studio, as I really loved the unusual colouring. It shows an alien world covered in rocks, sinister looking ground mist or liquid, some yellowy-green plants, and large, shiny outcrops of purple crystals, and I was instantly in love when I saw it. The only problem with it was that I didn't have any suitable terrain to go with it, so I set out this week to rectify that problem, creating some crystal-encrusted rocky outcrops!




There are a large range of different ways to make crystals, or facsimiles thereof, for the table, but I decided to go the easiest route and just use something that already looked the part. After scouring the internet for a while, I found some acrylic 'ice crystals' on Amazon that looked like they would fit the bill. I wound up buying three packets from three different sellers, due to some unexpected one-per-customer rules on them, which netted me three packets of purple crystals that, while identical in shape, were all slightly different shades of purple. As this just winds up with a more natural overall effect, I couldn't have planned it better if I had tried!

As the crystals were all the same size, I glued some together using an all-plastics glue, and took some others and belted them with a hammer to break them down into smaller pieces (Wear eye protection if you want to try this!)



For the bulk of the outcrops, I decided to use expanded polystyrene, as it's quick and easy to cut to shape. I used an old kitchen knife to roughly cut the polystyrene to the shape I wanted, and then used small spots of PVA glue to glue it down to a piece of 3mm foamed PVC to give it a solid base. Using small amounts of PVA rather than covering the whole piece helps to avoid the base warping when the glue druies.



To cover the polystyrene, the common choice would be filling plaster. I'm not a fan of this, hoever, as it chips easily, so I decided to try something experimental. I ran a bunch of old cardboard boxes through a cross-cut paper shredder, to make a nice pile of tiny cardboard pieces.



I soaked the cardboard in water overnight in the hope of softening it up a bit, and then drained and squeezed out as much water as I could, before mixing it into a slurry with PVA glue, some cheap, black, acrylic paint and a little plaster to bind it all together. Then, I slopped the resultant mess over the polystyrene, smoothing it down as much as possible.



While the cardboard mess was wet, I took crystals and applied clear craft glue to the bottoms. These were then pushed them into the wet surface, so that they would be partially submerged. I then left it overnight for everything to set.



The cardboard slurry dried with a fairly obvious, rectangular texture, which was going to look a bit odd for a natural outcrop, so I painted over the whole thing with a generous layer of PVA glue and sprinkled a coarse sand mixture over it, leaving this to set.



After shaking off the excess sand the next day, I gave the rock surface a coat of black paint.



My intention was to drybrush it grey, to try to match the rock on the mat, but my test piece wound up far too dark and grey looking, so I wound up going back over it with a rough coat of a sandy brown craft paint.



Over this, I applied a generous layer of Army Painter Strong Tone.



When the wash had dried, I set to work with some Coat D'Arms Bone and Bilious Green, and some Vallejo Light Grey, drybrushing all over the rock. The colours don't show up well in the pic here, but the aim was to replicate somewhat the different tones found on the different areas of the mat, so that the terrain wouldn't look out of place wherever it was positioned. I finished up with a final highlight of white to tie everything together, and then added a purple blush around the crystals. This was again matching the style of the mat, and also hopefully adding some more colour under the small crystal pieces I was intending to add at the end.



Finally, I dabbed some more PVA glue around the crystal outcrops and sprinkled on some of the small crystal gravel that resulted from my earlier hammering efforts. I also added some statuic grass and some plants cut from plastic home-decorating sheets to break up some of the boring rock bits.



With a few bits together on the mat, it wound up looking like this:



It's not a perfect match for the terrain on the mat, but it's close enough to work! The next step will be to finish off the rest of the outcrops and a building that I have in progress (as soon as I finish panic-buying some more Strong Tone!), and then work up some sort of 'forest' bases to flesh out a full table.



Stay tuned for more!



In the meantime, you can pick up the Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprues, along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge range, from the webstore here.

As always, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Modeling Tutorial: Simple Marble Bases


Posted on Thursday Mar 05, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

While painted sand is quick and easy for finishing off your miniature bases, sometimes it's nice to go with something a little more unusual to set your force apart. This week, I'm sharing a handy tutorial for creating super-simple marble bases, with no painting required!




The marble texture comes from adhesive vinyl. This can be bought by the roll in a huge range of different patterns and colours, so you can find something to suit whatever colours you are painting your army.



The vinyl is made to stick to a wide range of different surfaces, and so you can just peel off the backing and stick it directly to the base. Over time, however, the adhesive around the edges can sometimes dry out, causing the edges of the vinyl to peel up. To avoid this, apply a thin circle of superglue around the perimeter of the base top.



Cut a piece of vinyl slightly larger then the base, and then peel off the backing paper from the vinyl, and press the base into place on the sticky side.



Remove the excess vinyl by cutting carefully around the edge of the base with a sharp knife.



If the cut vinyl winds up a little rough, you can smooth it out by sanding lightly around the edge with a fine grade sandpaper.



Finally, attach your model using superglue.



The final model, ready for the table. If you prefer a less clean look, you can also glue some gravel or other rubble on top of the vinyl, or drybrush on some brown to dirty things up a bit.



That's it for this week. Tune in next week for more modeling-related shenanigans!

You can pick up the Maelstrom's Edge model range from the webstore here.

As always, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Terrain Spotlight: Painting the Underhive, part 5


Posted on Thursday Feb 27, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

This week sees the conclusion (for now!) of my ongoing Underhive terrain project! Previously, I have painted up the watch tower, generator tower, junction tower and the all-important lift tower. That just left the trash processing unit sitting follornly on the desk in nothing but its undercoat - a situation that set out to remedy, with the below results!




This one was slightly more complicated with the base coat layer than the other buildings, as I wanted the wall panels to be green, but everything else to be grey or rusted metal. I sprayed the tower with Army Painter Army Green, and the first level platform and base with Wolf Grey, and then went back over the metal parts brown rust base, a brushed-on mix of Vallejo Charred Brown and AK Red Brown Leather.



I won't go through the whole process here, because aside from being green it's identical to how the previous structures were painted. The one difference, though, was the graffiti for the lower level. I wanted it to be fairly extensive, but realised that painting it in there by hand was going to be awfully tricky. Instead, I pulled up a couple of handy, online graffiti generators and used them to create some overlay pieces that could be printed out on paper, weathered with grey, cut out, and then glued in place over the lower walls.





Other than that, everything went together the same as for the previous structures. Once I had everything but the final weathering and detailing done, I glued it all together and applied those final touches.















The one thing left to do at this point was to assemble a table and see how it all looked together! With the addition of a couple of other appropriate buildings to fill in the excess space, and some catwalks and barricades put together for different articles some time back, it all wound up looking like this:





The only thing missing now is a couple of blood-crazed gangs running riot over it. Time for some gaming!

To build your own underhive metropolis, you can pick up the Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprues along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge range, from the webstore here.

As always, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Terrain Spotlight: Painting the Underhive, part 4


Posted on Thursday Feb 13, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

The underhive continues to come to life! Previously, I have painted up the watch tower, generator tower, and junction tower. That left me with the trash processing unit and the lift tower to do, and while I'm excited to get some paint on both of these, the lift tower won out this week!




This structure was initially base coated with Army Painter Ultramarine Bluw spray. From there, the process is more or less the same as on the previous structures, and so I started by going back over the exposed metal areas with my brown rust base (a mix of Vallejo Charred Brown and AK Red Brown Leather).



Over the blue, vertical surfaces, I applied light streaking using very watered down light grey. There's a little bit of a trick to getting this the perfect consistency, as if it's not watered down quite enough it can either go on too heavy or bead up on the base layer.



I'm carrying my heavy graffiti theme across to all of the structures wherever possible, and this building was no exception. As before, I sketched in the designs with a fineliner pen, and then coloured them in with assorted paints and inks.



I haven't been getting too carried away with hazard striping so far, but thought this building warranted some on the lift doors. I printed out some appropriately sized strips and glued them into place on the bottoms of the door frames.



Time for weathering! I sponged Vallejo Basalt Grey over the wall panels, and dark brown over the blue-painted metal sections. The grey is much more subtle against the blue than on the previous structure, but it still does the job - if nothing else, it helps to fade the blue down a bit so it's not so eye-catchingly bright. I also drybrushed light grey over the floor sections, and light orange over the rusted metal parts.



From there, I pulled out the Beasty Brown to drybrush some dirt into the nooks and crannies and raised sections.



I stopped at this point to grab some pics of the graffiti, with weathering in place.



Then it was on to the final rust layer. I applied a generous layer of Army Painter Dry Rust to the rusted metal areas by dabbing it on roughly with an old brush.



From there, I just had to glue the floors in place and apply a few final details like the generator coils and the lift control panels, and the job was done.















Next week: The Trash Processing Unit!

To build your own underhive metropolis, you can pick up the Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprues along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge range, from the webstore here.

As always, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Terrain Spotlight: Painting the Underhive, part 3


Posted on Thursday Feb 06, 2020 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

This week, I'm continuing right on with my underhive project. So far, I have painted up the watch tower and generator tower, and so I needed to paint something with a little more colour to it. So I decided to have a crack at my twin level junction tower.




When I base sprayed all of the structures, I hit this one with a coat of Army Painter Necrotic Flesh on the walls, and some medium grey on the floor/roof areas. I then went over with a brush and picked out all of the exposed metal areas with dark brown.



Most of the painting process here will be looking fairly familiar by now to anyone who has been following these articles. As with the sides of the watch tower, I added some streaking to the walls using very watered down pale grey with a flat brush.



I wanted this building to have some more extensive graffiti coverage, but as with the others I wanted it to be weathered and old, so this needed to go on before the weathering layer. I sketched out the designs with a fineliner pen and some pale grey paint, and then filled in the colour using Army Painter inks and Citadel Contrast in various colours.



To apply the weathering, I used a sponge to apply grey over the wall panels, and dark brown over the doors and doorframes. I also drybrushed the floors with pale grey, and the brown metal areas with pale orange.



I glued the ladders on at this point, and then went over the whole structure adding some dirt into creases and wherever else seemed appropriate with a drybrush of brown. I also glued the bottom layer down to the base board, although I left the top layer unglued so that they can be split and used as two single-level structures.



For the final touch, I dabbed Army Painter Dry Rust over the metal sections, working downwards onto the raised surfaces and stippling lightly all over to avoid hard edges on the rust sections. This gave a much smoother finish than on the previous structure, where the rust had wound up a bit stark in places.















So that's one more done. Stay tuned for part 4 - although I'm undecided as to whether to do the trash unit or the lift building first. I'm a bit excited about getting either of them done!

To build your own underhive metropolis, you can pick up the Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprues along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge range, from the webstore here.

As always, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.