Triumph of Death: Mounted Death and Musician Greens

Death- coming soon to a Kickstarter near you!
Memento Mei- Remember me. Yeah, I'd remember...
Death Rides a Pale Green Horse 

Hot off the sculpting table! This grim smiling fellow, is based off of a drawing by Albrecht Durer, fabulously brought into 3d by the sculpting talents of Drew Day Williams. Death is going to be the first unlock stretch goal for my impendingly imminent Kick Starter.

We've designed the model to accept different arms. Currently  it comes with the traditional scythe and another outstretched arm holding an hour glass, giving you options of the flavor of commander you want to lead your undead legions (or get more than one and have lieutenants).

The Sound of Dooooom! 

Adding to my command pack choices is the horn player. Based unadbashidly off of Holbein's Totentanz wood cut of musicians, this herald of doom holds his period horn high.
The burial shroud works as a fashionable cloak/scarf.

During the renaissance it was very common to bury folks in a cloth shroud as opposed to a coffin. Because of this, the shroud is often depicted on the "undead" in paintings, drawings and woodcuts of the time.
Hans Holbein the Younger.

That's all for now- I've got to get back to finishing up a couple more units of deaders for Kickstarter goals.  Thanks for any feedback and for continuing to come visit my humble blog!




Saint Colin Dvde

...And Saint Colin grabbed a shield and said unto Pharaoh, " follow me dude- I'll get you out of this". But Pharaoh, was a cook, and wiped out...

Impavidvs dvde Vnam

Saint Colin Dude is patron saint of surfers, wax, and instant noodles

 I've been a devotee to St. Colin Dude for quite a while, and decided that with surf season coming up, I needed a version for the dashboard of my car. So, I made one.

A bit of history of St. Colin Dude

16th century etching showing St. Colin in the line up
 No one is sure where Saint Colin originated but all scholars agree it was from a coast or an island. Although references in the old testament are vague at best, ( mostly found in St Thomas' gospels) as far as we can tell St. Colin was a Roman soldier- most likely an auxiliary as their shields are more oval and board like. Like all good Saints, Colin was martyred by being boiled alive in a vat of top Ramen. Before he died his last miracle happened wherein the Ramen kept growing so much that it fed all around!  (other stories say he was boiled in wax)
Dutch/German Woodblock- most likely after contact with the Japanese 

The making of a Reliquary

This piece was done up on my laser-inator. I imported a drawing I had been noodling with and started translating the vector lines. After a few attempts I got something I was looking for cut wise.

Cut and unpainted. Still a bit tall for a car dashboard

Vector lines WIP

St Colin Dude and his Martyr pals Check out the waves

Over all a good weekend project, but I may go back and do a bit cleaner drawing of the dude.
 Thinking of including these as a goal prize for hitting a level on my upcoming kickstarter. Whaddaya think?



Triumph of Death: Doom Darts Regiment

The commander parts the shield wall to show that time is up!

 Doom Darts Regiment: Time's up!

Finished up my first full unit of my Renaissance skeletons, a regiment based for Kings of War. I'm going to point these out as skeleton archers, with the idea that darts of death would be as accurate and ranged as a bow. Accurate for skeletons that is...

 As a Regiment in KoW consists of 20 models, I front loaded the unit with 7 models in the first two ranks to give that "legions" feeling and so I could have more coffin lid pavises. I also really wanted   the commander showing you through a break in the shield wall- that time is up!

Side view showing ranking. Went with 3 ranks as It just looked good.

 With the unit built up 3 ranks, it makes it easy for me to attach another unit of 20 next to it (my deckled bases interlock) to create a horde for Kings of War. See- death can be flexible!
 these of course were inspired directly from Breugel's Triumph of Death Painting.
References like this make my models "historical" instead of fantasy :)

Another Conversion: Sword and Shield

I made a thing- taking one of the javelin Dart skellies marching, I cut out the dart and replaced it with a plastic sword from a GW model, then added an old GW empire shield. Really happy with the outcome.
This guy, along with all the painted singles I've done (including conversion) will go towards one of the painted model pledges for my imminently upcoming kickstarter. In fact, the main reason I delayed the KS is to resculpt this guy (and do a variation model) with an open hand so he can be used for various needs. I really want the best quality and variation for anyone jumping in to build a force or an army with these guys!

Cheers, thanks very much for looking, and I love your feedback and comments- keep them coming!


Triumph of Death: Regiments of Doom WIP

 The nice thing about skeletons? Nobody gives you guff about not painting the eyes!

Working on getting some troops and regiments done as examples for my upcoming Kickstarter.
Really loving how these guys are getting that "we are legion" kind of vibe.

The Coffin lid "pavises" will be added to the front rank

An earlier shot showing more of the underpainting. 

Painted up this command figure, then decided to not use him
for this unit. playing around with a bit more rust on the chain mail.

While working on the unit, I am trying different painting techniques to see what is both the most effective and time saving. Once I get this nailed down I'll do a step by step painting  guide.

Group shot

These painted and based up guys, with a couple more additions,  will be one of the available pledges.
Maybe the painted units will be too- we'll see.

Cheers, thanks for taking a gander!


Triumph of Death: Skeleton Landsknecht Pike

While working on the upcoming kickstarter, I started playing around with what other unit options could look like, and I converted a couple of javelin models into pike.

Really happy with the outcome, to the point where I'm having the javelin model remastered to be open handed instead. The hat is from an old plastic Mordheim set.

What do you think?


Venice Carnivale: When the Muse Commissions

You should treat a muse like a fairy. Paulo Coelho
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/keywords/muse_2.html

                                               " You should treat a muse like a fairy"...
                                                                                      ~ Paulo Coelho

Two furies for a muse

A few months back I got a ping from a friend, a very talented artist who has been successfully running her own business of creating corsets and other fabulously acclaimed couture for, well, let's just say for a while now.  She showed me an 19th century print of two furies and asked if I could make a set for her; they would be the "epaulets" for a costume to be worn in Venice at Carnival this year.   I couldn't reveal the project till they were worn, so now I'm very happy to show them off and yammer about them a bit. Maybe a lot.

my original cartoon. pieces on transfer paper to figure wing positions
When some one who daily is creating awesome art  for others to wear asks you to make them something, well, you ask when is the best time to make a measurement.

The Making of Two Furies

After consultation and measurements, I jotted down a few roughs, and asked about location on body, weight as a factor, and materials. The furies had a purpose, to hold tight madame's corset strings, and of course whisper mischief to all around.
laser cutting out all the pieces for templating

wings were made out of craft foam, covered in gold and brass leaf, then antiqued

Once I had the right shapes and sizes approved with a fitting, using all wood laser cut templates,
I went to work figuring out how to make the actuals, and parsed out what materials would be both strong and light, plus take a bit of a beating from wear and tear and crowds.  I stuck with birch ply for the body and masks, and used craft foam for the wings and the corsets. Gold leaf was a must, and aside from detail bits like pearls and gemstones, the rest would be painted with a 17th century flair. 
The ladies getting a 23k pedicure.

Sometimes the gold gets into your tea. Drank it all up!
As the wearer would be wearing red, erm, I had the furies do the same. I laser cut out glitter foam and then used gold thread to create stitches for the back. I really used a lot of my skills, and enjoyed the challenges. Reminded me when I was making props for big stores like FAO Swarchz back in the day. Many of these skills also apply to table top miniatures gaming, of course.
many skill sets went into the making of the furies

 Design Challenges

I'd like to say that these things were a snap to make,and all fell into place- but some interesting challenges arose. Mainly the gold leaf looked dreadfully flat and dull as it faithfully conformed to the spongy surface of the foam. Normally gold leaf is applied to a very smooth surface or on a "bole" a clay like paint that presses down a bit when the gold is burnished allowing that amazing shine to come through. I had gone through about $50 of gold, double leafing I stopped cursing and switched to brass leaf. Much cheaper, and less archival, due to it's thickness it held it's shine a bit better. afterwards I went back into the gold and painted in areas with gold paint and burnt sienna, creating some shading and form. I even put a bit of gold glitter on the edges just for fun.

The fact that I had all the pieces templated was a huge plus, because I could cut them quickly out of different materials and know that fitting would not be as much as an issue. Yay for planning!

One piece I did not pre-plan was the feather bloomers.Totally forgot about them, really. So, off to the drawing board and, after trying foam and wood, I ended up using layers of good rag paper, painted to get a nice feather layered look. Very strong and light. 

Materials and Time

I put together a list of materials that went into the furies just to see what all I used:

  • Birch plywood
  • Craft foam, various flavors
  • Gold leaf
  • Brass leaf
  • Silk ribbon
  • Pearls
  • Rhinestones
  • Gold embroidery thread
  • 100% rag paper
  • Paint
  • Glues, various
  • Florest wire (to give the wings form) 
I loosely catalogued time spent, which came to 40 hours give or take. In gaming terms, think of that as getting two full napoleonic regiments painted and based. 

On the Runway

More pics of the finished pieces in a studio style shoot. They are a bit burlesque, but what would you expect. It was a fun back and forth dialogue with each fury, thinking on how to make each have their own personality while keeping to form.
Furies on their epaulets bases, which will be covered in material and stitched to the costume

I let the red of the foam come through the wings to create antiquing

View of how think they became. about 20mm with wing spread
our fury in black, inspired by Hugin and Munin

Piece de Resistance

The night of wearing I received a quick message with this image. This was the first I had seen the furies full realized with the costume.  Smashing!

Ah, Venice. The muse is amused

I've not gotten a report on how the evening went, but  I am hoping that mischief was managed. Mind you, this was only one of several Amazing costumes worn by my client over the Carnival festivities.  I was very happy to play a small part in the performance.

If you would like to see more of Madamme Adamme's corsetry, you would do well to check out her wonderful store, Dark Garden Corsetry and Couture

You should treat a muse like a fairy. Paulo Coelho
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/keywords/muse_2.html
You should treat a muse like a fairy. Paulo Coelho
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/keywords/muse_2.html


Breaking Lances: Dundracon Tournaments

A few knights getting in warm up passes before the tournament

Tournaments Ho!

All the knights ready for action.

This past Saturday I ran a 10 person tournament using my somewhat soon to be published Breaking Lances rules at Dundracon game convention. It was well attended with over 18 players signing up! This is a real coup, as DDC is mostly a role playing and board game con, with lots of LARPing going on around and in between.

Folks from the Society of Creative Anachronism in garb playing- Cool!
A grand shot of all the ponies!

A shot with yours truly explaining the rules

Great shot of knight, Plotting shield, and Tilting tray for tracking "won" dice

With the amount of players I kept the first rounds single elimination, with a couple of players held back for bi rounds and outlyers. Everyone got the rules in the first course of their jousts, and I think fun was had by all.
Our Tournament winner! 
I totally forgot to get the name of the winning knight- no doubt some noble that was slumming at my tourney, but remember he won with a score of 6 points higher over all than the 2nd place opponent.

Sunday's Tourney

As Saturday's tournament went so well, and there were many that did not get to play, I opened up the lists for Sunday as well. This table had 3 jousting runs, and cycled through 12 players in all.
Sir Brion- Sunday's tournament winner

When can I play Breaking Lances?

Good question!  This tournament weekend proved to me that not only are the rules working, and the added layers of complexity (such as the optional "flourish" rule) can be added or subtracted with  no hitches, but that folks actually want their own knights and set ups. The only changes that came from the weekend was a clarification on a "Favor" you can win, and upping the crit severity when you get really bonked on the head.  Yay!

I had a lot of folks as if I was going to make this a kick starter. That would make a lot of sense and get good press, but I think that I'm for now just going to get it ready for launch on my webstore. The rules are now in the hands of my editors, and I have enough toys to take good pictures for the rules, so now it's really a matter of time on getting all the ducks in a row. Luckily most of this part is out of my hands, as my Triumph of Death Kickstarter coming out soon, causing a bit of juggling of my time

So, stay tuned, if you really can't wait for a release I'm happy to sell you sets of Breaking Lances ( I sold 11 "pre-launch" sets at Dundracon), send you a beta version layout of the rules  and post you the real set when they come out. just ping me and let me know.

More Pictures of Dundracon!

For lots more pictures of Dundracon, including more of my game and an awesome refight of Pickett's charge, swing on over to my pal Jay's Wargaming Madness Blog

As always, I look forward to your feedback