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Saturday, March 30, 2013

Moving Channels

If you have been following my vlogs, you would know I have been having problems with youtube. The main problem is they have not found out what have been causing my channel monetization option to get disabled for no reason. After two months of waiting, my patient has run out.

So if you would like to stay subscribed to my channel, please subscribe to my new channel here: www.youtube.com/lazypugwars.

Anyways, Adeptacon is around the corner and I am going! I have already bought my ticket and I am still deciding rather or not I should enter the Crystal Brush painting competition. I have never been confident about how well I can paint and entering a painting competition which ends 20 days from today seems crazy.

I don't know, what do you guys think?

Monday, March 25, 2013

Perdita Crew Showcase

After several weeks of painting and not painting, I finally managed to push myself to finish the Ortega crew from Malifaux.

Painting these miniatures was a breath of fresh air because I was getting sick and tired forcing myself to paint my Fenblades. What I hate the most about this hobby is batch painting, or painting a lot of miniatures with the same color scheme, position, and etc. It gets really boring and tiresome to paint five plus miniatures in one sitting, even if it is just base coating it. What I found worked best for me is focusing on just one miniature at a time. I guess that is why I enjoyed painting these miniatures. They are small so they do not require a lot of time to finish. They are different so they provide a distraction from what I am doing. They are cool because if you do not find cowboys and cowgirls cool, there is obvious something wrong.

Painting Perdita was the most enjoyable because she was a platform for me to try something different and a new technique. Even though my blending and feathering is not up to the standards I want them to be it is a good start.

Papa Loco was the next one I enjoyed. I learned from the stories of Malifaux that he was actually a powerful leader of the Ortega clan but went insane because of old age. I pictured him in prison clothes and carrying dynamite around to explode himself with everyone with him.

Painting the rest of the crew proved to be a hurdle for me because they are similar in paint scheme. Sure I could have painted all of them differently but the majority of them was their long, leather, coats. and ragged jeans. Batch painting is the doom of me since it took me 2 weeks to just finish the details and to be honest, they were rushed just to get them in my protective case for storage.

What I probably will do is to make their bases better because I rushed paining their rims and a lot of paint got on to the wooden details which I am not a bit bothered by but it just looks a tad messy.

If you do not like watching videos, you can also visit my photo album link on top of the page for more pictures of this crew and other miniatures I have completed.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Large? No problem!

 IF you want a video of this, please go here: http://youtu.be/SHZwlUa4RGI


Getting into Malifaux has brought new first world problems. One of them was finding a way to protect their stat cards since they should be marked once damage is dealt similar to how we do it in Warmachine and Hordes.

The main issue is their size. They are smaller than your typical playing card when folded so using a typical magic the gather sleeves protector will not work. However, they are must larger when spread opened. From research, most people will laminate their cards and that is the ideal solution since it is permanent and will make your cards almost indestructible.

For the more unfortunate who have no idea where to find this service, find it to pricey, or does not own their own laminating machine, here is a quick and simple solution.   


Mayday games game sleeves are perfect for your stat cards because of the obvious, Malifaux's stat cards are 80x120mm, 8x12cm in dimension. Now look at the picture above and put 1 and 1 together. It is a simple solution to this problem. I bought these on e-bay but you can easily find them on Mayday's website, Amazon, or even at your local stores. For the price I paid, I got 100 card sleeves so one pack of these and you are set for life in Malifaux but if you managed to obtain over 100 Malifaux models, then good for you. 


The only weakness to this plan is the cards actually do not fit perfectly because of the fold in the card. The amount is shown in the picture above and to be honest, you may not even see it because it is less than 1 mm sticking out of the sleeves. If you want you can trim down your card by a bit to make it fit but if you left it that way, it is entirely fine. 

These sleeves are a very good alternative to laminating your cards. They are as durable and will take a dry erase marker with ease. If you are getting into Malifaux and don't have the option to laminating your cards, then I highly recommend these sleeves.
 




Sunday, March 17, 2013

Perdita Orgeta and her battle with fabric


When I first heard of Malifaux, I was not interested in it at all. A tabletop miniature game which has no dice but uses a card deck to determine combat results was certainly not appealing at that time. However, as time passed, GW's products' prices sky rocketed, carrying over fifty miniatures around and the extremely long game time has persuaded me into looking at skirmish base games. I am really found of Warmachine and Hordes. I only just played two games with my Trollbloods but I am already down with the game I want to expand into Menoth as well.

Malifaux is sort of a weird choice for me since no one at my local store plays them, or their numbers seems like ants compared to the player base of 40k or Warmahorde. I chose to get some of their miniatures purely from how they looked. I didn't know how they were played or if they were an under powered crew which will get stormed on by everyone. I liked the rugged look emitting from these miniatures, screaming at me to paint them around a Western cowboy theme.

This brings me to my first miniature that I have completed and I tried my best to get the best result. If you are asking yourself, is that breasts I see, the answer is yes, they are.

The technique was actually simply layering up the paints. I have to admit though, I am not entirely happy with the transition smoothness I managed to achieve but I have redone it five times which spread over the course of several hours. It is not the best paint job in the world yet for someone at my level, it is pretty darn good. 

If you want to try it yourself, here is what you do.
1. Base coat with the color you want.
2. Mix in your flesh color with the base coat at a ratio of at least 5:1 (base to flesh). Then thin it down until it is almost at a wash consistency. Be careful not to overload your brush by wiping it off on a piece of paper, tower, clothes, your shirt, your cat, anything.
3. Slowly add more flesh color into the mix as you layer up the colors.
4. Bring the colors up until you almost at only your flesh tone.
5. Dot in the nipples with any color you like but realistically, your flesh tone with a darkish brown, then highlight it with your flesh tone with white, red, or pink
6. Glaze the whole area with a watered down (at least 10:1 paint to water) base color.
7. Optional, if you want, you can add additional shadows with washes.

For those who can't picture it, I posted videos of me using this technique here: www.youtube.com/lazypugpro    

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Balance is key

Lets elaborate the phase "Balance is key" from my previous blog entry. When you look at all aspect of life on earth, space, universe, heck even under your bed, you will see they all have balance when it comes to how things are done. I am not going to get into the whole "live as one with the earth" green peace propaganda stuff but what I am going to mention is balance is natural and anything without it is unnatural. This leads to a question you should ask yourself, Does unnatural things live long? I am not talking about robots or technology here but the trees in your yard or more cynically, a mutated child with an extra arm, Do unnatural things live long?

The simple answer is no. Unnatural things which do not have balance do not live long lives. The concept you should have gotten out of this is balance is needed for anything to survive. This includes non-tangible objects such as human emotions or thoughts. War gaming, painting, or any hobby is on a cliff when it comes to balance. Actually I would consider maintaining a relationship with another human being easier than maintaining the love and dedication for the hobby. I say this because I get bored quickly if things do not go my way when it comes to my hobbies. While I do believe I am not the only one who reacts this way, it is a pretty bad habit to have since painting is a big evil in the destruction of the wargaming balance. 

Many people would agree they never considered painting to be their cup of tea and has stayed away from it since leaving pre-school. That's how bad painting it is to most. The concept of sacrificing time and maintaining patient to hone the skills needed to successfully pull of a, in your own eyes, work of art of a miniature is daunting. Especially when you want to play the game these miniatures are involved in as well. Why would you be spending years honing painting skills if you want to play now, right? This is why when asked which wargamer I am, I can consider answering in three ways. I am painter. I am a hobbyist. I am a gamer. I talked about the triangle of wargaming in my last blog as well, so if you want to read about it, go there.

At first, everyone's motive for joining the hobby is between hence the three responses. However, in an ideal situation, those answers will merge to become just one simple "I am a wargamer" though this happens to rarely to discuss. What normally happens is this, people choose one path to focus on for a while, thinking to themselves that they can always improve the other two paths later in their hobby life span. Then they just give up, for example, the gamer. The gamer are people who wants to play, enjoys playing but not really a painter or a hobbyist. After a a prolong time, they want to have good looking miniatures and the simple ones or unpainted ones are being frustrating to play or even look at. They tend try their best to paint but fail to get to the level they seek because they do not invest the time or practice needed. Everyone likes a quick way to do things but always expect the best outcome which never happens. Even though the gamer enjoys the game, he or she no longer enjoy the miniature quality he or she plays with. They stop playing the game and before long, the miniatures are in an attic, under the bed, in the closet to be forgotten.

I stress it again. If you are suffering from painter's burn out, it is probably because there is no balance. If you lost the love for the hobby, it is probably because there is no balance.

Balance is key and should always be kept. Not only in this hobby, but as a life style.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Hiatus

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It has been a long time since I updated my blog. I went on an indefinite hiatus which lead to me almost removing myself from the hobby entirely. I was suffering from burn out for taking too much in, trying to do more than I could handle, and just over estimating the amount of pressure I can put on my shoulders.

As we all know, this hobby requires more than one skill. It requires a large skill set to be most successful or to be able to get the most out of it. This skill set revolves around the triangle of painting, converting, and photography. Considering the factors involve in each individual side, one can understand why a lot of us has fallen out with the hobby.

I am here now because I have caught my second wind. The main reason why this was made possible was this generic saying "Rome was not built in one day". This sayings kept and is keeping me in the hobby plus it has contributed to how I changed the way I live.

To be honest, I was very indecisive and had many hobbies because I could not focus on one for the long term. Things got boring really quickly and I found myself jumping back and forth from hobby to hobby. In the beginning, I put in 150% of my time and afford. I focused on only the hobby of interest in that given time while almost completely ignoring or phasing out everything else. This did not exclude my real life commitments and obligations. I remember just 2 years ago I got into League of Legends and it consumed my life. I found myself playing it whenever I had the chance. I used most of my free time playing it and even sneaked the game onto my work computer just to play during my lunch breaks as well as after work. Soon I found myself losing everything.

I moved to the States to give my relationship at the time a chance after three long years of long distance. Because I was overly consumed by the game, I became a ticking time bomb. I was almost always irritated or angry at the game, which I allowed to boil over into real life. I started lashing out as my temper grew and tolerance dropped. In the end, my relationship ended and I have just threw away everything for a game.

That is how intense I get once I am committed to a hobby. The same went for miniatures. I got back into the hobby after ten years out of it due to financial reasons. I was young, not working, and GW's products were expensive. Like always, I went all in and ignored the facts that I was unemployed, using my life savings, and just got kicked out by my ex. As the model count and time spent on the hobby rose, my commitment dropped. Like everyone, I enjoy seeing well painted miniatures, playing the game, and converting but, like everyone, I technically suck at painting, don't really have a local store in the US, and ran out of things to convert. My bank account going near red never helped and I got into a nasty accident which resulted in a nerve in my left arm being cut, not being able to move my arm for 2 months, and 3 months of physical therapy. I used the time my accident gave me to reflect on how my life has changed since I moved and what were the decisions and reasons that have lead it to that point. I realized my mindset needed to change. I had to learn the definition of dedication, commitment, and most importantly accomplishing goals.

The phrase "Rome was not built in a day" is a saying that everyone has heard at least once. There is a second part to it, which is "but it was destroyed in a day" however this has no relevance yet. Anyways, the way I understanding the phrase is almost literally. Rome was not build in one day or everything that I do will never be accomplished in a day. It will require a long term commitment, a large amount of time, planning, dedication, and a "never give up" attitude. This mindset can not be given up just because it looks like nothing has changed or no improvement is shown. 

The way I have applied to my life is exactly how I described it. Since the turn of year, I have set simple yet long term goals in many aspects of my life I wanted to changed. It is important to keep your goals achievable and realistic.

For example, I am overweight. So I set myself a goal to lose 30 pounds within this year by going on a relatively healthy diet, though I still eat junk food like McDonald's or Burger King a couple of times per month, and regular exercise. It has been 43 days and I have lost 10 pounds so far.

In relation to our hobby, I set a point limit. For example, for Warhammer 40k, I set a 2,000 Points limit to the army I have. If I have not painted all of those 2,000 points, I will not buy any additional miniatures for that game. This way I can focus on what I need to finish before overloading myself with more and more miniatures.

In relation to painting, I set a technique I want to master. For example, I am learning how to wet blend, making washes, and understand colors triads. The amount of research I do is almost equal to the amount of on hand training I do plus I do them on the miniatures I need to finish painting from my "hobby goals". The most important thing I learned from this is you just need to try it. You will get no where if you do not screw up paint jobs.

Now, what is most important is not setting goals. The most important thing I learned is "Balance is key". No matter what you do, you will always try to find balance. This is a topic I will elaborate in my next blog entry.