Traditionally I have found that I tend to grind through the time I spend painting. Like doing it...yes but enjoy doing it might be a stretch. I much prefer assembling; buying the models and building them in cool poses, even converting them with extra bits and green stuff. This can leave a lot of cool looking gray plastic at times. I've painted some models that I have really enjoyed and this got me thinking; why do I enjoy painting some models more than others?
The answer as it turns out for me at least is that I enjoyed painting the models that DIDN'T need to be painted for an upcoming tournament. As I "slaved" away to get the last few models or units done for Adepticon, BITS, Paca' etc I dreaded sitting down at the paint desk. However, I thought about the last few models that I painted that were not in a rush I thoroughly enjoyed my time and found I painted them much faster.
This spring and summer two new books from Games Workshop have hit the shelves: Army High Elves and Codex: Eldar. These two books have been my sole focus in the hobby (oh wait the Soul Grinder and the River) over the past few months. First I have begun an entirely new High Elf army to go along with the one I already have (to be unveiled at a later date) and for some reason I fell in love with Saim-Hann (of course that is Iyanden above). The red, white and black scheme drew me in and I had to paint myself an army.
So I began with what I thought was one of the coolest models in the range: the Wraithlord.
This guy has a lot of cool options including a huge sword and more guns than he can even shoot in a 40k game. The detail was amazing but he needed some work on his pose as the kit comes with his legs literally straight as the only option. Even the slightest bend in his leg leaves him much more dynamic. He was a ton of fun to paint - so much so that I had to buy and paint my next eldar unit immediately.
I moved on to what any new army needs - a general. This Spiritseer has been my HQ choice to make Wraithguard a troops choice (core for WH players). A spiritseer isn't allowed a singing spear, but instead I run him with the Spear of Teuthlas out of the Iyanden supplement.
I loved the pose of this model. His cloak is being blown from behind him and his hand is outstretched almost as if he is guiding some force with his mind and hand, directing it upon his foes!
I couldn't stop there as even as a group of allies I needed a troops choice. As I stated earlier the Spiritseer makes Wraithguard(blades) a troops choice so that is where I turned next. I loved the pose of the Wraithblades with the axes, but for my first unit I wanted to do up the old school in the new format. With guns that can blow up anything and send it into the warp they were just too cool.
Once again I was surprised at how much I enjoyed painting these guys. So much so that I ended up deciding to free hand the designs on their tabbards and painted up 2x as many jewels as I had originally planned. The Saim-Hann color scheme continued to drive me to paint and I continued riding the hobby high right into my airbrush table...
This Vyper was the first model that I attempted my airbrush on. I think it turned out very well and when it came time for the decals and free hand work I may have gone a little overbaord... Boasting 5 total decals at varying points on the Vyper this guy is ready to fly around the battlefield blasting away infantry or other lightly armored vehicles. I do still need to find out how I am going to base this guy. I bought some 60mm round bases which I think I am going to use.
Speaking of basing - I went with a theme I saw in a white dwarf recently. I think it was put in use by one of the WD writers who plays Tau. I have always wanted to try my hand at snow and I think it turned out very well. Thanks Twitter for helping me decide between the semi-melted and fluffy look.
So the good news is I painted all of that in a little over a month finishing sometime in late July. The bad news is Screw City GT looms ever closer and I need to hit 3k of High Elves. I guess the fun painting will have to be put on hold for now so I can grind out some Elves of the "past"
P.S. I have been using the guys in the group above as allies to my Dark Angels. They have been a lot of fun to play. Really think expanding the allies rules in the game of Warhammer Fantasy could be a nice addition for 9th edition.
Do you paint for fun? Grind for tournaments? Both? I would love to read some comments below.