Saturday, September 25, 2010

FOW Objective Marker - Modeling Day at Adler Hobby

Yesterday was the second session of the early war escalation league at Adler Hobby. Since many people are waiting for lead to be released from Battlefront, Gordon is running every other session as a painting/modeling session while we build up our forces. I packed up my in-progress figures and my supplies and headed to the store for the day. When I arrived people were doing various projects: Cleaning figures pulled from the just released Polish Infantry army box, putting the finishing touches on some German light tanks, and browsing the store's stock for new figures to paint. I set up my work area and prepared to get to work finishing up the crews for my artillery battery and 88 AA gun.

Adler Hobby and Battlefront Miniatures provided objective markers and supplies for each participant in the league to paint up their first of two objective markers that you need for Flames of War games. Last session Gordon had each player pick an objective marker from a selection of blisters. I chose the Italian Fiat M14 since it was fairly unique and fit closest with my German (Axis) force. Once the number of league players reached critical mass, Gordon began a very nice presentation on how he paints armor using a system of layered dry-brushing steps over a black primed vehicle. He demonstrated this on his objective marker, and a set of four Polish tankettes. While I've been dry-brushing for over 20 years, I still find seeing someone else demonstrate their techniques interesting. Invariably I learn more every time, and this time was no exception. Gordon's technique for mixing each progressive color and loading up his brush was interesting. He also used a Games Workshop 'Tank Brush' to do his brush work. At first this beast of a brush looked strange, but after seeing it in use I was a believer. I got one for myself (thanks for the gift Gordon) to add to my brush collection. Not only is the shape well suited to dry-brushing, it's a much more durable brush than the chisel-shaped artist brushes I've been using, and wearing out, doing my armor in the past. Typically I try to avoid Games Workshop products as they tend to be more expensive than other comparable brands, but in this case I think an exception to this rule is well warranted. Below is a picture of the Games Workshop brush.

After Gordon was done we each were able to work on our own objective markers. Gordon had the forethought to pre-prime them black for each of us. Using Gordon's technique and my new brush I was able to complete my marker (pictured at the top of this article) in only 15 minutes or so. The only thing I didn't do at the store was add the static grass and protective flat overcoat. I'm liking the new technique very much. I think it would make painting USA, Russian and early-war German tanks a very quick affair. I'm interested in seeing what steps it would take to incorporate the technique with multi-color camouflage patterns. Maybe that's something Gordon will show in the future.

Also provided from Adler Hobby and Battlefront were some weathering washes from the Flames of War paint line. The mud wash worked particularly well on tank treads. I found this out a little late as I had already used Citadel 'Devlin Mud' wash on my marker's treads.

After we finished our objective markers we all continued on our own projects. Gordon helped some of the players who were new to painting miniatures with additional tutorials. I had a great time finishing up all of the detail work on my artillery crews while talking with everyone in the league and several other customers who came and went as the day progressed. I'm definitely looking forward to the next project day in the league. As our forces become more complete we'll be playing games as well as painting and modeling on project day. I expect once everyone's forces start to become table-ready we'll phase over to all gaming days, but honestly I enjoyed modeling day so much I hope we can still do them occasionally even after everyone has an army to field.


adlernest said...

Thanks AJ
That GW brush is a ROUND No#12 Synthetic Watercolor and Acrylic Brush ,.I just found out GW no longer make that round tank dry-brush anymore and I have ordered some samples to find a replacement so maybe we dont have to break your GW purchase

AJ (Allan) Wright said...

Sounds good!