Sunday, April 24, 2016

Demos at Draxtar

As time moves along, and we make more and more trips to Draxtar Games in Batavia, I have started to figure out ways to conduct the sort of "spot demos" that I love so much.

These are literally spontaneous hobby combustion, where all of a sudden there is a group of folks watching a quick demo that I am holding on some aspect of painting.

With each trip we have made out to Draxtar, I have been able to figure out the best way to transport what I need for the kind of space in which I have to work.

These rapid fire scratch builds were done for a podcast which is being recorded later today.  I needed a few types of Laffly French trucks for a test game of Bolt Action.

The actual miniatures have not arrived yet, so I thought I would open up the laboratory again for a few hours and see if I could create something that looked like this out of a pile of pink foam pieces and plasticard.

Again, only a few hours was spent on these vehicles, which are more terrain than anything else.  They will probably be used as some kind of objective once we get going with the games and scenario construction.

The red oxide paste is normally used for basing and terrain, but I have also used it for corrosion texture on vehicles.  It also serves to strengthen the soft foam, and fill gaps.  There was little time spent on measuring anything... just cutting and gluing in rapid succession!

I wanted to demonstrate primer painting for all the Flames of War and Bolt Action players at Draxtar.  Sure enough, Rich, Rob, Paul, and a host of others were all there playing Flames of War!  

Here's the "Big Three", the primer colors from Badger.  Think of the concept in this way... if you have a red, a yellow, and a blue, you can make any color.  As odd as this sounds, the Black is my Blue, the Green is my Yellow, and the Orange primer is my Red.

I brought out a few beat up larger brushes, and set down to work.  In a matter of 17 minutes, I had all the surfaces not simply primed, but with plenty of rust and corrosion and even a little shading!

While that larger vehicle was drying, I did some more "primer painting" on a Flames of War Tiger and Char B Bis.  Again, all of these layers of 'paint' you are seeing are actually primer.  This means that it is very unlikely for paint to slough off the surfaces of these figures.

I often like to do these demos in "halves", so that the person can have a go at it themselves, but with one side as a template.  It's a little less daunting to try and translate that information to your own muscle memory. :-)

While those vehicles dried, I went back to my scratch built Bolt Action scale Laffly to demonstrate those same colors in a much larger size.  The principles are the same, but there are more elements that you can add in when it's twice the size... or more.

It was also gratifying to see those scratch built pink vehicles looking a lot like real miniatures!

I brought out some of the new Secret Weapon paints to do the camo patterns and even a touch of weathering.

This picture is probably worth a few words... if not 1000!  

It is these types of projects that I am trying to have on hand for the google hangouts.  I think that people could get quite a bit out of watching 30-45 minute spot demos such as these.

Obviously, I want to do more intensive class structured events in the hangouts, but to practice and perfect the platform, I'd like to begin with lower impact, more informal sessions like these.

Many more elements are to be added to the vehicles.  A great deal of freehand, foliage and weathering are yet to come.  I have not been able to experiment with leaves or even tree branches placed on vehicles as camo, so yet another experiment is in progress!

Another series of step by step articles will be done on the Laffly W15T tank hunter over the next few days, so stay tuned!!


  1. I saw you painting this on Facebook and genuinely didn't realise it was foamcore and styrene! Amazing! I've been using AK interactive primers for a while now and love them might have to get some badger ones for some colour variation

    1. Thanks! These were so much fun to build! Now I have to make a Lorraine Carrier. :-)