Saturday, 31 December 2011

2011 in review, and looking forward to the future...

Well, a year in already! (well, technically the blog is a year old tomorrow, but let's not quibble over details). 9,368 page views is a pretty respectable amount, especially considering the fact that I had a slump that lasted a couple of months and meant no new posts...

Looking back at the projects listed in my original post, we can make a breakdown of productivity for the past year:

Zombies: Miniatures painted, rules lost in laptop debacle.
Three Kingdoms: No progress made, still not a single finished figure.
Firefly: Three miniatures painted.
Strange Aeons: the project that got the most love, I now have just enough miniatures to actually start playing some games! I loaned the rulebook to one of the guys at work though, so I probably won't get a game in for a little while...
Doctor Who: Bits done here and there, but still not enough to play an actual game (although if I could just focus for long enough, I should have enough miniatures to play the Canary Wharf scenarios...)
VSF: no progress made, not even on the converted miniatures that sit mocking me in their drawers...
AEWWII: dead project. The only miniature I have on the go for this is a Captain America, and I can't yet bring myself to paint all the tiny white stars on his shield. There's some Tamiya tanks in a box for this project though, so I might get round to building and painting them eventually.
Warmachine: I sometimes take these miniatures out of their drawers and boxes, sigh, and then pack them away again.
Anima Tactics: Pretty much the same as Warmachine, I've four or five half painted miniatures that just don't grab my attention when I'm choosing what to work on.
Evil Genius/7tv: Only two finished miniatures so far, but tons more to come...
Marvel Superheroes: Percentage-wise, one of the most expanded projects. It's probably the fact that each part is only a single miniature, which is so different to everything else in my collection, that keeps me interested.
GW: combining all the projects into one, we get: blah. Yes, that's a giant in the picture. No, he probably won't get painted next year either.


Well, I'm not swearing off GW completely, I'm still halfway through painting my Blood Bowl team, planning to paint a max-size unit of Dwarf Slayers, epic Zombieslayer-inspired Undead army (I've got Kemmler, Krell and the Wyvern) as well as being tempted by Skaven, but who knows what I'll actually get done.

As far as new projects go, it's the generic fantasy that is the biggest, and most likely to get other bits added to it, purely due to it's breadth, and my inability to focus on an particular thing for more than a week or so.

As it's the last day of the year, it's the last time we see the tally looking like this:

122 vs 295 = -173

before we reset to zero tomorrow. Hurrah! Although I kinda wish I'd bought a load of miniatures to go on this tally rather than next year's, since this one was already beyond redemption...

Looking forward to next year, there's a number of new projects I'm considering starting. I'm loving Halo at the minute, and so quite fancy repainting some Heroclix for that. Star Wars is a project that's been nipping at my imagination for some time now, primarily due to the number of plastic prepaints I own - I think it reveals something about my character though that I haven't yet started the project because I don't have enough miniatures to make a detachment of Stormtroopers as described in the old miniature battles book - despite the fact that I'm unlikely to ever need a detachment, and the fact that if I started painting a detachment I'd rapidly get bored and wander off to do something else. Gundam and Evangelion would be awesome to do too, but luckily the fact that they're not in God's True Scale has stopped me from starting either of those (yet). Ooh, and Planet of the Apes - I could use survivor miniatures from the Zombie project for this, meaning I'd only need to convert and paint various chimps, gorillas and orangs armed with makeshift spears... well, an expansion of a project doesn't count as a new project surely?

I might need to do something to sort out my productivity too. These days, I have a couple of drawers of miniatures in various stages of completion, and spend almost as much time going through minis choosing what to paint as I do actually painting, which combined with the fact that what I fancy painting changes from session to session results in how rarely I ever actually complete a miniature (the Christmas Zombies posted recently were the fist time I'd painted something in one session in longer than I can remember). A few years back, when I was just starting my AEWWII project, I had a system. I had three tiny trays (that were originally dividers in the box I store most of my paints in), each probably 2x3". I'd only paint what was on one of those trays, and couldn't start something new until I'd cleared a space by completing something else. Each tray could hold maybe three miniatures at a push, and you'd be amazed at the number of miniatures I finished purely because I'd just bought something else that I really couldn't wait to paint. Admittedly, I don't think I have the willpower to be that strict with myself these days, but it's something to consider...

Friday, 30 December 2011

Back online, but only just...

So yeah, back online, but alas my laptop is now empty - no music, no pictures, no pdfs of obscure Gundam wargame rules...

Also, no rules for my zombie game that I'd been working on on and off for the last two years (I did originally start them in a notebook, but soon transferred to the laptop, thinking it would never fail me...)

Olly is sad.

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Christmas treats and bad news...

Only one miniature in the Christmas haul this year, and that was the White Dwarf subscribers' mini. It's my first Finecast miniature, and I'm frankly terrified of it (it looks and feels weird...) but I'm sure I'll get over it. We still have 'Christmas 2' to do (where we see Mother's side of the family), but for now that puts the tally on:

122 vs 295 = -173

And now the bad news: my laptop, having not been used since before Christmas, now refuses to start. Bugger. So much for trying to blog on a more regular basis...

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Just in time for Christmas...

So yeah, I knew Christmas was coming, and due to my super-preparedness prepped some minis ready for a festive post.
Due to generally otherwise being busy though, I only actually got round to painting them today:

Studio Miniatures' Christmas set, which I think I bought for the Christmas before last... and yes, I know, I really need to get a new pot of TCR, this one's seen better days...

Which leaves the tally looking like this:

122 vs 294  = -172

In other news, I finally got around to seeing Rise of the Planet of the Apes today, which set my mind to buzzing with ideas for converting chimps holding various bits of police riot gear; it's lucky I couldn't find any suitable miniatures straight away or next year's tally would already be taking a hit...

Well, that's the last post before Christmas, so I hope Santa brings everyone the toys they're hoping for, and if I don't post again before then, I hope New Year's is good for you all too.

Friday, 9 December 2011

Foundry goodies!

Arrived home from work today to find a pile of parcels outside my door, which opened into (amongst other things) this:

Yes, I couldn't help myself , I took advantage of Foundry's one day sale on the Kevin Dallimore books (oh the eye candy!) and used that as an excuse to pick up a couple of Flesh triads I'd had my eyes on for a while.

Also, I helped a nice man (Mr Marx) who was having a bit of a clearout, and took the bits in the middle off his hands. And yes, there's a miniature in there, which takes the tally to:

118 vs 294 = -176

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Kung fu, discourse and lighting...

So, after claiming the end of radio silence... nothing for a while. 

I blame a multitude of factors: moving house, halo 2, and in some cases the fact that I've been staring at certain half-painted miniatures for long enough that I'm considering thowing them away and buying new, exciting, shinier ones (and yes, I realise that the sensible option would be to take them from half-painted to fully painted, but hey, sometimes your brain just wants to make excuses to buy new miniatures).

Despite all this, after a period of approximately eight hours of procrastination today (during which I watched several episodes of Adventure Time, drank several coffees, and went out for several cigarettes, so it's arguably not technically a wasted day) I managed to actually finish some miniatures:

A couple of dudes from Black Hat that will serve various roles - the sorceror type I see as being an ally for Conan (since I'm sure there should be at least one non-evil magic user in the universe), but can also slot into the generic fantasy project (like most anything else that gets the conan tag); whereas the martial artist is a monk for the 'paint a miniature for each dungeons and dragons class' that I shamelessly stole from EvilCartoonist and then didn't really do anything with, as well as being able to stand in as a martial artist for 7tv...

Onto the discourse part of the title: there are many miniatures I want, and many projects I want to start. I have a terrible problem with considering every movie I see and every game I play in terms of what 28mm miniatures I could buy to use for it, but never actually finish anything as I've lready started two more projects. I rewatched Sucker-punch and started planning conversions, I'm playing Halo 2 at the minute and planning on repainting some clix (after christmas though, let's hope Santa brings me a brick). I think I've found the secret though, the answer to my problem: 'give it a week'. After a week, I'll have either lost interest, or discovered another three things I want to do, or actually be considering starting something as a project. But even then, it's likely another week will pass before I actually start anything, as I'll have been distracted by something else shiny.

And so, onto the final part of the title: we need better lights in the Craft Room. That was it.

Which, as usual, brings us to:

118 vs 293 = -175

There are 23 days left of the year. If I painted 7.6 miniatures a day every day, I could end up with a score of -1. I've painted two miniatures in the last month, and truth be told they were already more than halfway done. I've said it before and I'll say it again, roll on the new year clock reset!