28mm Reaper Dark heaven Legends Mini – The Harbinger

This week I was hoping to post details of my neglected model for the September challenge but things got the better of me and the base I want to put it on still hasn’t arrived in the post yet.  Truly a neglected piece if ever there was one!

So instead my offering is another Reaper miniature.  If you are getting bored with them (I’m not) then you will be pleased to learn that I only have another three to do before I kick on to something different.  The figure reminds me of something IRO would do so I’ll dedicate this piece to him.

I’m not sure I can explain why I went for this one but in a rather horrid way I rather liked the flesh torn horse.  Not a great deal to say other than that.  I tried for a desolate looking base hence the bare tree stumps and no hint whatsoever of vegetation.  Seemed appropriate for the figure in my opinion.

Photos of the completed model below.



DSC_0883 (1)DSC_0882 (1)DSC_0883DSC_0880 (1)DSC_0881 (1)DSC_0882DSC_0885


The News at TIM – Mid Week Musings (No: 26)

Welcome to this week’s Musings!


How to find a lost Mojo

Before I went on holiday a couple of comments surfaced about losing inspiration for painting and modelling. Responses generally amounted to the same thing, it happens to us all and it will return in due course so never fear. Against this background I got to thinking about my own inspiration, where I get my own ideas from and what I’m most likely to do to try to get my mojo back the next time I lose it.

I guess the first thing I’d say on the subject is that I’m lucky. Lucky in the sense that I’m not stuck on any particular period or genre. I do have my favourites of course but I’ve an open mind to doing something completely random. This I think is a big help and if you are willing to explore and do something different, even as a one-off small project, then I think this offers the best option for rekindling interest. I’m also into dioramas and vignettes rather than army building which might make things a little easier too. Of course you still need to be inspired, something has to ignite the flame.

The following is a list I’ve put together of my go to ideas to get my creative juices flowing. It’s not exhaustive by any means and from time to time I add to it. It might be of interest to you, it might not but I have found that it works for me.

In no particular order I typically check out:

  • Google and/or Pinterest using suitable search criteria. Often I search “28mm dioramas” which invariably throws up all manner of ideas across all genres;
  • Book titles, either those in my own book collection or which might feature in a google top 100 list or similar. Classics such as Treasure Island and The Last of the Mohicans have been inspirational for me but so to has Ken Follett’s Pillars of the Earth, a contemporary classic;
  • The cinema as another medium to tap into. Films old and new, historical or futuristic are responsible for numerous items which appear on my Modelling “Wish List”;
  • Quotations, often as a derivative of film, although not exclusively so. There are some great movie lines out there. Clint Eastwood’s Dirty Harry character had some great lines as did Arnold Schwarzenegger in the Terminator. Figures for both exist and are also on my modelling “Wish List”.  A Google search will offer an almost endless supply of ideas;
  • TV in the same way I consider books and film. There are some great programs out there, Game of Thrones immediately springs to mind;
  • Other people’s blogs. A relatively new one for me but significant all the same. The fantasy genre which has dominated my more recent work was inspired by the work of many of you guys;
  • Modelling shows.  These have proved very useful too.  There are some amazingly talented people out there and there is nothing quite like seeing things in the flesh;
  • Historical anniversaries such as WW1 which, care of my modelling club, set me on a journey of discovery I would never have embarked upon.

As I mentioned earlier, this is not an exhaustive list by any means. Please feel free to comment as I’d love to know what has provided inspiration for you so I can add it to the list. Who knows, in the future we might help ourselves as well as others.

Alternatively we might become suicidal having decided to give up completely!


Home Alone – Domestic Progress Update

The continuing absence of She Who Must Be Obeyed (she is currently looking after her poorly sister in Edinburgh and not due back for at least another week) has seriously limited my modelling time.  On the positive side her absence has so far taught me three things.

  1. The house keeping budget doesn’t go nearly as far when you spend it on going out for a meal every night;
  2. I’ve probably used up more energy trying to avoid doing any domestic chores than it would have taken to have done them;
  3. Advertisements can be misleading (see below).

Domestic progress during the continued absence of SWMBO has been slow, one could say almost non-existent. In other words everything is going to plan. Well my plan that is, not the plan I was left by SWMBO.

Some top cooking tips from Aussie bloggers, doubtless skills learnt from a hard days graft working in the bush, has provided me with some nutritious lunch options. The local pub has as planned provided excellent evening meals with the added benefit of a pint or two and no washing up! Eating out has pretty much resolved the need for shopping as well, another little bonus. So far the need to use domestic appliances has not arisen although I’ll swear the washing machine is looking at me, almost daring me to use it!  Maybe at the end of the week I will but for now the floor area surrounding the over flowing laundry basket still has space.

As for cleaning the house I thought I’d cracked it by chance when looking for modelling inspiration on Google images. I typed “28 to 54 Models” into Google and found myself looking mostly at scantily dressed attractive women between those ages rather than the anticipated military figures and dioramas that I expected to see. I was about to try again when amongst the various images there was an advert for “Discreet Domestic Services”.

What a great idea I thought. Why not get someone round to clean and tidy the place before SWMBO gets home from visiting her poorly sister in Edinburgh! Better than that, someone who’s discreet would enable me to take all the credit for the place looking all spick and span.


Has to be worth a go right?

So I rang the number…


“ Hi, I’m phoning in regard to your advert and wondered if I could ask you a few questions?”

“No problem, what do you want to know”

“You sound foreign?”

“Yes I’m from Russia. Is that what you wanted to know?”

“Ere no, I was just expecting someone who is English”

“You want English girl, I can get you English girl”

“No, no you sound fine. How much do you charge?”

“Basic service is £50.00”

“That sounds fine, just as long as you can lick things into shape”

“You want extras?”

“What, like dusting?”

“You call this dusting in England?”

“I think so. I’ve never done this sort of thing before so I’m not completely sure”

“OK but dusting is extra”

“No problem, I might as well go the full monty and keep the wife happy!”

“You want me to provide service for two?”

“No, no just me. The wife’s away you see so I thought I’d get a few jobs done discreetly. You are discreet aren’t you?”

“Yes, yes I am very discreet, all my clients demand it”

“And there I was thinking I was the only one! How often do you think you will need to come?”

“Normally I come once but I can come as often as you want me to?”

“I’m sure once will be fine, it’s not that dirty. Just as long as it comes out looking nice and clean. Talking of which, do you bring your own cleaning products or do I need to get some bits in?”

“I always bring tissues”

“Is that all? No vacuum cleaner or anything?


“Hello! Hello! Anyone there?”

Can you believe it, she hung up just like that. Hardly the way to run a cleaning business in my opinion.

So, despite my best intentions I’m back to leaving it for the wife to do when she gets back. At least I can say I tried, well sort of. A high risk strategy according to some of you but as the Dr Pepper advert goes, what’s the worst that could happen?

Still a week to go before she returns.

Time enough to formulate a cunning plan!


Untile next time.


28mm Reaper Dark Heaven Legends Mini – Rafael Maladoni

The next figure from my Reaper to do pile.

Here we have Rafael Maladoni who on the face of it fancied a take away, a light lunch!  Well the figure was certainly one I could get my teeth into (all puns welcome!).

I liked this figure and enjoyed painting it.  Not a lot to say although for the last photo I took onboard IRO’s suggestion of placing a backdrop behind.  I went for a black and white graveyard scene and have to say the photo for a first attempt doesn’t look to bad.  I will definitely look to do more photos like this but it may not be for a little while.  I think I shall take it on as a project to eventually do all new models with a backdrop but I like the idea too of backtracking to do some of the older ones as well.  An ideal subproject to keep me out of mischief during the winter months.

Photos below.


DSC_0901DSC_0898DSC_0897DSC_0879 (1)DSC_089920180809_112850





The News at TIM – Mid Week Musings (No: 25)

Welcome to this weeks Musings!

Modelling Versus Housework

Yesterday morning She Who Must Be Obeyed left me!

I should qualify that statement.  She left to look after her sister in Edinburgh who is very poorly following major hospital surgery.  She will be gone for the best part of two weeks.  Her parting comment was “you know where everything is”.  This is undeniable.  I know where the cooker, microwave, washing machine, tumble dryer, vacuum cleaner, iron, dish washer, etc. are but do I know how to use them?  Do I fuck.

So now I have a dilemma.

If I do all this stuff I will have less time for modelling.  Furthermore, if I show myself to be too resourceful I’ll be expected to do more upon her return to the love coop which will also lead to less time for modelling!

So what is to be done?

Well some of these things are easily got round.  The local village pub serves excellent food and Robert the landlord will be happy for my company on the quiet mid-week evenings.  On a personal front I have enough socks, pants and shirts to see me through.  Other matters require greater consideration.

The daughter could begin to pull her weight domestically.  If she is old enough to fraternize with a 16-year-old lad from Rugby (see last week’s Musings) she can bloody well do her own washing and ironing!  The son has plans to spend more time at his girlfriend’s so nothing to worry about there.

That leaves me with only some other washing to deal with and of course house cleaning.  As I see it the options are:

  1. Get the daughter to do it? (A little unfair as she is seriously studying for GCSE’s)
  2. Get my mum over?  (She’s 87, has a dodgy hip and is riddled with arthritis but is a game old girl and wants to feel useful but can’t drive so I’d have to collect her)
  3. Do it myself?  (Analytically this is an option but seriously?)
  4. Leave it until SWMBO gets back?

Well I’m sure you will agree with me that the only possible solution is number 4.  If for no other reason than it will teach her to go off and leave me in future.  A daring strategy for sure.

I’ll let you know how it goes!


Colour Wheels

While I was bobbing along on the crest of a wave one day on holiday and enjoying my fourth cocktail at two thirty in the afternoon I found myself thinking about Colour Wheels. Some, She Who Must Be Obeyed for example, would claim such thoughts were the psychedelic effects of alcohol. I on the other hand claim the inspiration for such a musing was the cosmic result of seeing a rainbow appear over the yard-arm. I’ll let you determine the truth.

Now I can’t remember when I first learned of the existence of colour wheels but I’d hazard a guess and say it was back in the late 80’s, most probably care of Military Modelling Magazine and an article it might have contained. I thought it made for a sensible purchase and so bought one at a local art shop. I’ve had it ever since and do find myself referring to it from time to time.

From an early age I was very much aware of the three primary colours, red, blue and yellow and knew that from these colours all other colours, with the exception of black and white, could be mixed. I’m not sure how I came by this basic knowledge, I presume school, as I cannot think where else, unless it was something my parents or older brother may have passed on to me. I also knew the combinations needed to create secondary colours as well as combinations of three or more to create colours such as brown. The colour wheel served to confirm all this and act as a reminder in the event I should ever forget.

In addition the colour wheel also provided me with the terminology of “tint” and “shade” by simply adding white or black respectively, something I was doing naturally but without knowing there was a name for it. What I didn’t know about at that time was complimentary colours and, more significantly there use in shading and highlighting.

Now a basic colour wheel can be made up of any blue, red or yellow that you happen to have at your disposal. From these three colours can be derived purple (blue/red), orange (red/yellow) and green (blue/yellow). At the risk of stating the obvious the secondary colours will vary based on the ratio of, say, red to yellow and will vary again if you add black or white. In any event, once the secondary colours have been mixed the complimentary colour to Blue is Orange, to Red it is Green and to Yellow it is Purple.

Now I’m generalizing I know but I suspect many of us when we are shading and highlighting our figures do so with lighter or darker versions of the same colour but here is the thing, you could use the complimentary colour instead. This is not something I’ve done a lot of but when I have the results have been very pleasing to my eye. Which leaves me wondering all the more why I have not used the complimentary colour far more often.  So much so that I intend to go down this route more at some point in the future to gauge the results.

So now I’m wondering – how many of you use complimentary colours for shading and highlighting or is my suspicion that we all mostly use lighter or darker versions of the same colour, mixed or simply from another bottle, justified?


Until next time.


28mm Reaper Dark Heaven Legends Mini – Trista, The White Wolf

Back to modelling!

Another figure in my current series of Reaper miniatures.  Fortunately I had done a lot of this figure before I went on holiday so despite everything that’s going on I managed to finish it off this week.

Some intricate painting on this one sets it a little apart from one or two others recently.  I enjoyed the challenge it provided and also the colour scheme as it was nice to do something in a rather nice blue.

Painting figures is one thing, deciding how to base them is something else entirely.  I decided the blue of the figure some how lent itself to a warmer climate which in turn threw up the idea of a Roman or Greek style pillar.  Not only have I never made a pillar before but I’ve never tried to produce a marble paint effect either.  Had I managed to do this one earlier it might have been a candidate for the August Technical challenge.

The pillar was made using various bits and pieces.  The main element was a simple piece of wooden dowel.  To create the bottom of the pillar I stuck three different sized rubber washers to the dowel which in turn was stuck to a spare square base which I had in my bits box.  The top of the pillar was given a rough cast finish using a little ground cat litter and the corrugated shape of the pillar was created using some cardboard which I ran through my Green Stuff World corrugator tool and then simply stuck it to the dowel.

As for painting the pillar I primed it in white first and then gave it a wash of light brown coloured acrylic.  While it was wet I applied various streaks of black, brown and white to create the veins using a dry brush to blend a little.  I didn’t have to do too much blending because the paint was naturally absorbed by the cardboard.  I repeated the process a couple of times until I was happy (which is to say I reached the stage where it was as good as it was going to get!) before applying a coat of gloss varnish.  The corrugated cardboard created a vertical seam which after painting pretty much disappeared but I decided not to leave it to chance so added some plant life to disguise it completely.

Photos of the completed figure appear below.  Ì didn’t get chance to do a backdrop for the photos, as suggested by IRO, this time around but aim to address that in the next post, or the next one or the one after that!



DSC_0877 (1)DSC_0877DSC_0875DSC_0874DSC_0878DSC_0876 (1)DSC_0880DSC_0879DSC_0876

The News at TIM – Mid Week Musings (No: 24)

Welcome to this week’s Musings!


Hooray, TIM’s Back From Holiday!

The good news is I’m back and fully rested. The bad news is I’m back and fully rested.  Either way I’m back so not only is my holiday over but so is yours.

Now while I was away internet access was, to say the least, patchy. I’d go as far as to say non-existent, it’s like that in the middle of the ocean apparently. As a consequence I have had much to catch up on, particularly in respect of what you guys have been posting. Over the last few days I’ve been trying to catch up with your posts, at a rough count I would say I had well over a hundred to look at. You have been busy, some more than others but between you all I had plenty to keep me occupied!  Apologies if I missed anyone.

Catching up with blog posts is only one thing I had to do. I had barely walked though the door when I was hit by a number of things which will require my attention over the next few weeks and beyond. More on that perhaps in future musings. Needless to say time to muse and paint is going to be patchy to say the least but hopefully I can keep both going for my sake if not yours!

Meanwhile, to mark my return, something for you to contemplate.

Is it possible to produce models teenagers think are cool?

I suppose I ought to explain the rationale for asking this question.

Over dinner one evening while on holiday my fifteen year old daughter announced out of the blue that modelling was boring and asked why I couldn’t do something more exciting and less embarrassing? Apparently having made friends with some kids on holiday she was called upon at some point to explain what her parents did. She wouldn’t reveal what she said I did do but she was embarrassed to say I did modelling. She would rather have died apparently, harsh but that’s teenagers for you.

I tried in vain to explain why I enjoyed the hobby and the benefits I got from it but I might as well have been talking to an alien. I don’t relate to her world at times and she does not relate to mine. I then remembered Harry Potter and reminded her of the many models we had seen when we went a couple of years ago to the Harry Potter Experience at Leavesden Studios, a stone’s throw from where we used to live before moving to Devon. I pointed out that the model of Hogwarts had bowled her and her brother over as one of the greatest things she had ever seen. I added to this just how much scale models had been used in films to produce great cinema effects well before the days of computer imagery .

After briefly allowing this to sink in she announced “Yes dad, but those models are cool, yours aren’t!”.

Oh the pain, the heartbreak, the … the… the… shit!

I can’t begin to explain the heartache which goes with her words. I felt I had lost my little girl, the girl who used to like what I did (well some of it).

After she left to see friends I asked She Who Must Be Obeyed where this change of attitude had come from. It seemed, according to he mother that one of her new-found friends was in fact a little bit more than just a “friend”. I asked what she meant by that and was informed that my daughter may have been trying to act “cool” having found herself enjoying a holiday romance with a lad named Harry.

What the f..k!

The following conversation with SWMBO ensued.


“When did that happen?” I asked.

“The second day of the holiday, now don’t go off on one he seems very nice”

“You’ve met him?”

“I’ve not met him but I’ve seen him and your daughter likes him. He’s sixteen, comes from a nice family and goes to Rugby school. It’s a private school and costs around £24,000 a year!”

“You new about this? Why didn’t anybody tell me?”

“Because we knew you couldn’t handle it and you’d go off on one and embarrass us all”

“That’s unfair, I’d never do that”

“If you say so dear!”


Embarrass them indeed!

Well the holiday is over and I can report that despite my best attempts at under cover surveillance I never did catch or meet the little bastard who was hell-bent on de-flowering my little girl. I know all about 16-year-old boys, I was one once albeit a long time ago. I’m also familiar with the upstairs downstairs class system and if he and his family think they can simply dump my daughter if she ends up pregnant they can think again. I’ll take great delight in using my modelling knife to remove his fucking scrotum!

I am however left with a dilemma. How to produce a model that a teenager thinks is cool?

At this point guys I need your input.  All ideas welcome!


Until next time.


The News at TIM – Mid Week Musings (No: 23)

Welcome to this weeks Musings!

Hooray! TIM’s Going On Holiday

Yes it’s that time of the year when “She Who Must Be Obeyed” and I, along with “She Who Wants To Be Obeyed But Is Only 15 So Does As She Is Told, Not” are off on our holidays.  As a consequence this is my last post for a couple of weeks or so.  You all deserve a good rest from me, my models and my rantings so make the most of it as I plan to pick up with the blog with a vengeance upon my return.

There is a small chance I might be able to check up on what you guys are up to while I’m away but with internet access likely to be minimal most of the time I can’t bank on it.  Hopefully you will all have been very busy which will give me plenty to look forward to reading in a few weeks time.

I Have A Plan!

OK, so it’s not much of a plan but it struck me that it’s all well and good having lists but a plan to go with them would be no bad thing.  Arguably it is essential.  Now I will give the matter more thought while I’m away but tentatively the plan, in no particular order, is:

  • to complete all the Reaper miniatures that I currently have (an incentive before buying any more!)
  • get ready for the Cornwall show the weekend I’m back from holiday
  • decide what figures/models to take to Telford show (no rush as it isn’t until November)
  • decide what models I want to do for the 2019 Plymouth show (the theme is 75 years on from D-Day) and buy the relevant figures
  • decide what, if any, competitions and categories to enter and buy figures as applicable
  • aim to do a neglected model or two every month

Sounds reasonable and dare I say achievable.

I’m feeling more organised by the day!

The Secret To Greater Harmony And Understanding?

Now because this is essentially a modelling blog I always try to make a link, even a tentative one, to the subject in my Musings. I’m stretching it a bit with this article but I wanted to leave you with something deep and meaningful to contemplate while I’m away.

As I’m sure you are all aware, opinions are like assholes, everyone has one.  In itself that is a good thing but not everyone sees eye to eye and when that happens problems occur.  No better example exists than in relationships.  Failure to see the other persons point of view is often a recipe for disaster.  The following is the best explanation I have ever heard for explaining the situation and what needs to be done to resolve it.  It was brought to my attention many years ago by a very old Wise Man (actually he was a Trainer at the Management Training college where I used to work).  It goes like this.

Draw the shape below and sit two people either side of it like this.

Person A


Person B

Ask Person A what they see and they will we see the number 9.  Ask Person B and they will say they see a 6.  From where they are both sitting they are both right, neither is wrong.  It’s all a matter or perspective.  The secret is this.  Until Person A or Person B gets of their arse, walks around to the other side and sees the situation from the other persons perspective they will always argue they are right and the other is wrong.  Only when one of them, preferably both, does this is there a chance for peace and harmony.

Easy really.

I should also point out that this Wise Man had a few radical ideas and approaches to training and education.  When he was in Hong Kong a course he was running had two delegates who simply just did not get on.  No matter what he tried they would not cooperate with each other.  He solved the situation by handcuffing them together for 18 hours.  Either they would find a way to get on or one of them would kill the other.  The story, a true one, ended with them becoming the best of friends!  Pity we don’t do this with some of our political leaders!


Until next time.