News, Updates & ramblings

This Blog is acting as the news and updates page for my new website,

The website itself is the archive of my painting through the last decade or more, with easy navigation around what now amounts to over 3000 images of wargames figures & display miniatures.

It is also the repository for my musings, workbench notes and reports on all things gaming and miniature painting that I get up to.

I've been collecting miniatures for 24 years and have covered most scales, periods and styles in that time. Don't expect consistency on one project here - there will be variety in project, but hopefully consistently high standards!

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Workshop Tour. HobbyBrush HQ revealed!

Well, thats the cabinets, if not all the models, documented for the start of the year. Now I just need to start getting things OUT of the cabinets and photographed for proper galleries!

Friends and guests who come over are frequently surprised by my workshop setup here, and it is certainly a big part in how I manage to paint as much as I do.

So for those of you who haven't been over to throw paint at HobbBrush HQ (yet!), here's the virtual the workshop I promised 18 months ago.... better late than never, aye?

 The Key bit:

This is the section which remained all but identical for more years than I care to remember and through 4 different locations. The key desk in front of the chair has, in fact, been my painting desk for nearly 20 years now! 
  1. Lists. Here I keep lists of things I've painted in the last 12 months, things I want to paint, Models friends are looking for which I may come across in my dealings and also paint recipes for any current projects or the (now rare) Commissions I may need to replicate later on.
  2. Tool store. There's a carousel on top for knives, clippers, pencils and regularly used stuff, and the rack below contains sculpting tools, drill bits etc for the specialised jobs. Also the odd set of commission notes but those drawers remain pretty empty these days. 
  3. Regular Acrylics. Hundreds of them. A mix of citadel (all vintages), coat D'arms, Foundry, Vallejo and others as well as a growing selection of Tamiya, Mig and AK Interactive products for eathering in front of them. I use the new Games and Gears Racks which are great, but currently out of stock and I need more :(
  4. Airbrush Paints - Vallejo and ComArt. 
  5. Under Desk store - the secret to my success! Houses PVA, sand, basing materials, old brushes and boards for undercoating on all in locations I can grab without looking they've lived there so long!
  6. Say Cheese - its the highly technical photo booth! Large white card sheets and a ridiculously good Daylight lamp. Add an old camera and a decent tripod and its Job Done. There's an article HERE on photo editing if you're interested in my process. 
  7. Ridiculously good Daylight lamp. It needed its own mention. Sadly they don't make the lamp or even the bulbs any more - I'll be lost when its gone but I have all the bulbs I could stockpile from SE England!
  8. Model storage. 3 Filing racks of unpainted models. One entire stack is Orcs and Goblins, the rest are a wide and varied mix but there are literally thousands of models in there...
  9. I didn't mean to label 9... its pretty boring down there, there's a Bin and some spare paint and basing materials... not exactly ending on a high for this picture... 

Above the Hive of Activity...

  1.  The "Hobby Porn" Collection. Inspirational tomes in the form of Golden Demon Winners Books, Cool Mini Or Not Annuals and even folders containing all the inspirational pages collated from 12 years worth of White Dwarfs!
  2. Those lists again, moving on... 
  3. More Models. Left had shelf is plastics (A lot of them Reaper Bones) moving to boxed games and Metal storage on the big shelf. 
  4. Bases. Hundreds of Spare bases for every conceivable rules system and scale! In front of them, My Nemesis - the Otherworld Giant responsible for me cutting my eyeball open a few years back. 
  5. Airbrush cleaners, Spare paint pots and scenic materials saved for all those "One day" display projects. 
Not Just Painting...

  1.  Airbrush Booth. Not a great Purchase in itself, but it does get used occasionally and it defines my airbrushing area quite well. 
  2. More Boxes of models, and then boxes which did once contain models and await re-filling with sold items. 
  3. Old Git Mode Engaged and a Moment of Reliving the glory days - thats the Fanatic Ball and Chain Award for Best Specialist Games Entry into Golden Demon 2004 :) 
  4. Main Project Board. For the Big collections I'm working on but not directly, so they wont fit on the WIP space. 
  5. 5 A shelf for rules I'm currently playing - Flames of War and Bolt action mainly with the ever hopefull inclusion of Seeds of War too. 
  6. 4'x4' gaming board. Mostly used for photo shoots but cleared off and ready for dice in 2014. 
  7. Terrain Boards and Scenery. There's racking for 6 4'x2' boards under there, as well as trees hills etc. The side of the table folds down so new boards ca be slid straight in or out. 

 Guest area...
No big labelling on this one - You're probably more bored than I am by now! 
Most of the desk areas are topped by 2'x2' "Project Baords" which allows me to move them about, or out completely when I have other painters come to join me or for lessons. aka ultimate Tidying Cheat!

Main Project Board:
This Board always gives the best impression of my current paiting intentions outside of commissions. As you can see, its laden with 15mm Soviets at the moment but there's still a few 28's hidden behind the pile of boxes. 
 The Actual WIP area...

The Term Work in Progress is a little loose here. 2 of the figures on this board have been there for 6 years, but its where intention lies and most will see paint sooner rather than later. These are also the personal bits which often fall by the side if commission Painting takes over.
  1. 28mm Soviets. Mix of Black Tree Designs and the new Winter War range from Baker Company's awesome kickstarter. Really waiting for their vehicles!
  2. Early war 15mm French HMGs & Mortars. Paint for sale, but held up as I have a Commission on. 
  3. Anyaral; World of Twilight Delgon. Want to get started on these!
  4. Random Characters. Couple of Reaper Bones, Couple of Warhammer and some classic 90's models. This is the section which tend to really hang around a long time... 
  5. Anyaral; World of Twilight Fubarnii - they're my primary collection from the range and I've already painted a lot, but Mike keeps making more pretty things!
  6. 15mm soviet armour. There's always some of this it seems. Battlefront T34/85's, Forged in Battle T34/76's, and Zvezda everything else in that little lot. 
  7. And I Nearly forgot - there's a couple of converted Kraytonian command stands too. That army was never really ever going to be finished... 

If you're still reading - well done! 
Hope you enjoyed the tour and I hope its answered some of the FAQ about the way I do things. If not, ho hum, its passed an hour or so.... 

Thanks for looking!

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Bolt Action Soviets, something new from myself!

Back in early 2013, talk started at Guildford Games Club about playing some 28mm WWII games. Bolt Action was decided upon and I had my excuse. 

So, it finally happened - 7 Years after painting a commission on the same figures, I started my own 28mm Soviet army. Guess What? I've got carried away.... 

The gallery has been added to the 28mm WWII section and can be found HERE
Infantry are mostly from Black Tree Designs at the moment, with Armour from Warlord Games and guns from Plastic Soldier company. And there's more to come! (57 pictures)

New Galleries: 1
New Pictures : 57

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Some old, some new

As I start working on the Galleries once more, I'm finding odd pictures that I was SURE I'd uploaded ages ago.... but clearly hadn't!

I guess that makes this Housekeeping as well as extension work for the new year. Prepare for randomness...

First and Foremost, the Invite to Terminate Gallery is UP at last! Thank you to everyone who took part, and whilst they have been posted all over forums and Facebook, my Apologies it took so long to get them up here. Its 9 months on, but There are still Many more floating around with various painters out there so I'm hoping there will be more updates in the future. (64 pictures)

Apparently, despite having been painted in early 2012, and sold then too, I never finished the 28mm Roman Gallery. 4 new pictures including the Final Auxillary unit you never saw before can be found HERE (4 pictures).

Someone asked me for pictures of my Epic Mortar Teams. I have no idea who or when, but they're in the City Guard Gallery Now! (3 pictures)

Matt's Soviet BKC force is small but perfectly formed, and has been waiting to go online for a year now so its about time this Guest Gallery got an airing! (9 pictures)

New Galleries: 2
New Pictures: 80

Friday, 3 January 2014

The Tour Continues....

After yesterdays look at the workshop cabinets, we travel down to the cabinets downstairs. Thats right, HobbyBrush HQ indulges Hobby on all levels!

Cabinet 1, level 1:
Display pieces, supposidly all Fantasy or Historical. New this year are a couple of pieces from Anyaral: World of Twilight, a Mantic Enforcer piece, and one of my Late Grandfathers models (the 54mm lancer) finally makes it into my cabinets :)
 Cabinet 1, level 2:
Two very old epic scale Golden demon entries, some Mantic Games Goblins, and a few Early war German armoured units from Forged in Battle. The Germans and Goblins are for sale if anyone's interested?
 Cabinet 1, Level 3:
Anyaral: World of Twilight Fubarni. One of my Favourite Ranges of the last few years. Neglected by me in 2013, targetted for 2014 :)
 Cabinet 1, Level 4:
Resting place of the Great Greenskin Project. 16 years in the waiting for paint, a years flurry of excitement and then Totally Lost steam on this army again when the last edition of WHFB came out. Ho Hum, They'll be patient for another 16 years if they must!
 Cabinet 2, level 1:
6mm sci-fi. Epic Golden Demon Entires (and winner!), random bits of Epic goodness and some Dark Realm Miniatures in there too.

Cabinet 2, Level 2:
TANKS! Its that word again - Soviet - 15mm armour for Flames of war, but the miniatures are actually a mix of Plastic Soldier Company and Zvezda. Loving Both companies this year. There's a very large portion of this all-New army of mine which doesn't fit in the cabinets, they'll be featured in their own gallery soon.
 Cabinet 2, Level 3:
Firestorm Invasion 10mm Sci Fi from Spartan games. The range was awesome, but stalled quickly. Hoping for a re-boot in 2014. Oh, and Bob the Builder. He's my favourite. Or maybe he's my 4y/o Nephew's favourite and so has to be on display. I forget. But he Rocks either way.

Cabinet 2, Level 4:
More WHFB Greenskins languishing in Dust.
 Cabinet 3 Level 1:
Special one this and the keeper of my greatest embarassment. The Invite to Terminate Sit here, and have never yet made it onto the HobbyBrush Properly. My Apologies to all those who took part. It will be rectified. Temporary guild relief comes from the Facebook Album of Entries HERE.

Also present on this shelf is a mix of sci-fi one offs which have been around for years including a Commissar bust shich has been incomplete for no less than 8years, but WILL see completion this year. Certain.
There's also a Tyranid Gargoyl painted by a talented new painter. If you're reading this - Thank You! Yes, Its got pink claws.
 Cabinet 3, level 2:
Random Oldies. I think the newest model here is about 5 years old!
 Cabinet 3, level 3:
OK, So I used the Oldies label too soon. We'll go with Epic "Classics" this time around. Mostly from the early years of the Millenium....
 Cabinet 3, level 4:
Pretty much the "It just wont sell" shelf. Skeleton army in 15mm and a Mantic Skeleton Regiment in 28mm. And Assorted individual bits of, well, crap that just dont have another home!

Thats the cabinets, next up the Workshop tour, then I'll stop stalling for time and actually do some proper site updates!

Thanks for looking!

Thursday, 2 January 2014

Starting with Good Intentions.....

2013 was a quiet year, online at least, for the HobbyBrush. Not so behind the scenes but that doesn't count much to you lot, so who cares....

Well, with loads of painting done (I'll do the numbers in a later blog!) in the year, I have plenty to update and I'm determined to find the time to do it.

Starting with good intentions, I'm going to go back to my old faithful New Years tradition of the Tour of the Cabinets. Sit back and prepare yourself for a whole load of painted models you've seen before, and a fair few new ones too. Also get ready to get very bored of the word "Soviet"....

The Workshop Cabinet:
There's been a change of House since the last time I did this, and a large display cabinet has re-appeared from storage to go up in the Workshop. So, from bottom to top....

Bottom right holds the WIPs I want to keep dust free ad bits waiting for sale - at the moment its a rather special Epic Dark Angel Commission, some 28mm soviet prone infantry and some 15mm soviet units for sale. Left of the picture is some 6mm Eastern front scenery and my ever-present Pit Fighters!

On the Right is my 6mm Soviet collection. Half the size it once was, its set to shrink again as its rarely used.

One shelf up and two scale shifts - 28mm Soviets now. Black Tree Designs miniatures, used with Bolt Action Rules. Big Gaps are where I took the armour out for closeups and forgot to put them back!

 Taking the opportunity - Here's what should be filling the gaps. My Soviet armour collection from Warlord Games. Did my first airbrushed 28mm vehicle earlier in the year and now I'm hooked :)

To the right of that shelf, More Soviets from Black Tree Designs. AT gun is from Plastic Soldier Company.

Next up - 3 shelves of Kraytonians to feed my 6mm sci fi obsession. Haven't played in a year but oneday soon I hope...

Heading up from that you reach a zone which, in honesty, is well out of my own line of sight. As such, its old and random models decaying and rotting up here, but sometimes its these oddities which people most like seeing on these tour posts so here we go....
15mm centaurs, 6mm sci-fi conversions and a few "display" (very arguable) pieces from my earliest days painting pre-teens.

And the left hand side of these two shelves. 15mm humans, and the start of the classic toy collection. There's another shelf of it above, mostly given to me from my Grandads collection but they're not miniatures as we know them so we'll stop there.

Suddenly its very late in the evening, so the cabinets downstairs will be added to the blog tomorrow, and then to really bore you maybe we'll try a workshop tour??