Thursday, August 4, 2016

Sith Planet Super Star Destroyer, Part 1

I've started work on this huge Sith Planet Super Star Destroyer that will be used for games of Star Wars Armada at this year's NOVA Open gaming convention. This is a resin garage kit and it's pretty awesome, but there was significant prep work involved in assembling this behemoth. The worst part was the leading edge trim on the top hull piece; lots of areas were paper thin or just broken off. To fix them, I wound up running .015x.25" strip styrene around all of the leading edges and then filled the voids with Milliput so they could be sanded smooth. There are tons of little air bubbles that I may or may not go out of my way to fill, but I'll be filling the particularly bad ones. I will also be building a base made of out MDF so firing arcs can be drawn on it for use in the game.
This thing is massive!
Front view
First coat of primer on the ventral side

Friday, July 8, 2016

Studio Update: Dog Days of Summer

Summer in Northern Virginia is finally in full swing! We have temperatures in the 90's and a health dose of humidity to boot. I have a couple of commission projects to finish and then I can start dedicating myself to building some of the many, many models in my personal stash.

The NoVA IPMS monthly meeting for July was held on the 6th and I brought along three models to show off and enter into the contest. I brought R2-KT, Luke's X-wing, and Poe's X-wing. KT managed to snag second place in the "Figures" category and Luke's X-wing took home "Best of Show," making it the second model I've entered to do so!
I think she was worthy of better than second!
Luke was popular at the meeting!
Working on R2-KT was a blast through and through. For one, the subject matter is extremely touching and a stellar example of the positives that come from fandom. All too often we see stories that portray our various fandom cultures in a negative light so to work on something that unifies us nerds is a welcome change of pace. The other benefit was experimenting with enamels, which I have always been a little apprehensive about. After finding that I seem to have a firm grasp on using enamels for weathering effects, I used some AK Interactive Streaking Grime to add some more weathering to the wonderful little BB-8 model I completed earlier this year. The filming prop has a lot of weathering along the orange panels on his "body" and I wasn't exactly sure how to go about recreating that on the model. After talking to another modeler and working on R2-KT, I found that stippling on enamel washes and then feathering them out is the best way to go about it. I'm pretty please with how it turned out and when I have time I'll take some updated pictures of the little guy.
On the commission front, I have two projects in my queue that I need to finish. One is a gigantic resin Super Star Destroyer for a friend of mine that will be used in Star Wars Armada games. I'm currently assembling the behemoth and will hope to get some paint on her in the next couple of weeks. I have another in progress commission for a friend of mine that has to be kept secret because it's gift. It's been challenging so far and I'm having to learn a lot as I go along (it's a subject and scale I'm not very familiar with) but I'm confident that the final product will be among my best work!
I'm really looking forward to having these last commission completed so I can put all of my time and focus into completing personal projects. I have decided to scale back the amount of commission work I do because my schedule just isn't supporting it. I enjoy commission work for the challenge and because it essentially pays for my modeling hobby, but I would like to build and display things for myself for a change! My model backlog is enormous and seems to be growing every month. Among other things, I have a stack of probably twenty Bandai Star Wars models alone that I would really like to get cracking on. However, at the top of my to-do list is Hasegawa's 1/48 scale Voyager space probe. Space exploration has always fascinated me (and it's a big part of why I love science fiction) and I've wanted to build this model for a number of years. I added it to my collection a year ago and I recently acquired the fantastic Eduard photo etch set for it so I look forward to adding it my display cabinet in the months to come.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Showcase: Poe Dameron's Black One (Bandai 1/72)

Poe Dameron's Black One T-70 X-wing, completed in Tamiya, Vallejo, and Secret Weapon Miniatures acrylics; Alclad lacquers; 502 Abteilung oils; and Tamiya weathering pastels. Custom wooden base.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Showcase: R2-KT (Bandai 1/12)


Bandai R2-KT, completed in Tamiya acrylics; Alclad lacquers; Mig & AK Interactive enamels; and Secret Weapon Miniatures pigments.

WIP: R2-KT (Bandai 1/12), Part 2

I got a majority of the work complete on R2-KT this morning. For the first time ever, I have decided to leave the white parts unpainted and will instead apply washes and weathering directly over the bare plastic. The only parts that were painted were the aluminum, pink, and the cooper hoses on the feet. The weathering will be at a minimum; just some panel line washes and a little bit of light chipping on the metallic parts.

Monday, July 4, 2016

WIP: R2-KT (Bandai 1/12)

I had some downtime so I began working on R2-KT. The story behind this cute little droid is touching and I hope that my work will pay it tribute! The pink is done with Tamiya Pink (X-17) with a drop of Flat Base (X-21) added since it is a gloss paint. While the rest of the panels can be painted and added after the fact, this piece has to be put in place before putting the two halves of the dome together, which is necessary to remove the seam. The nature of this model allows me to pretty much paint each piece separately and then assemble the model.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Showcase: Luke's Red 5 (Bandai 1/72)

Bandai 1/72 scale X-wing starfighter (Luke Skywalker's Red 5). Finished in Tamiya and Vallejo acrylics; 502 Abteilung oils; and Tamiya pastels.