Generic Sewer Tiles


I’ve been piddling around with some ideas this week and have come up with a few sewer tiles for the dungeon terrain.  These are a little different in that they are 4 X 4 tiles instead of one-sided modular pieces.  I acquired a new ink and am much happier with the color of the stain with these pieces.  I started out with some random field stone floor tiles that were stained and assembled along with some 1 mm styrene cut to size.


I glued the floor tiles up into straights and corners then I dry stacked some ideas to test if I could get the look I was after:




I decided to go with a ruined look and I proceeded to stain more field stone wall pieces and glued them to the bases:



Next I painted the sewage area with a muddy green and coated it with Triple Thick Gloss Glaze.



Not bad for 1 day project.  I could probably use twice as many but I think I’ll just use these as a transitional area for the layout connecting dungeons and caverns or a little hidden side quest.

Also I’ve been messing around with some color schemes for the cavern pieces.  I’m leaning towards a psychedelic aqua blend that can used for multiple settings: fantasy underworld, sci-fi/alien, pulp, Atlantis, etc.:


At the moment they look like “Grow your own Magic Rocks” so I might need to tone them back down a bit.


Night Owl



Messing with Narthrax – Paint


Narthrax has been propped up on my workstation staring at me for over a month.  One of the reasons it remained there for so long is because I wasn’t able to decide what color it should be.  Red? No.  Blue? Nah.  Green?  Nope…and so on.  At the risk of sounding a little too artsy sometimes you just to let the colors emerge.  Break out the Gesso!


A base coat of brown.  Hmm.  A more natural color maybe?  I noticed my daughter was playing Skyrim the other day and I wonder if that didn’t have some effect.


I started adding some highlights and thought maybe some cream and rust colors might help lighten it up.


The eyes need some rework:





Now back to the base that I built for her a while back and some better lighting.





It still needs dome detail work and a magnet placement for the back foot but I’m surprisingly happy with the direction this is going.

Thanks for taking a look,

Night Owl

Earth Tribe – Orc Conversions

This weeks new elemental tribe is the Earth Tribe.  I’ve decided to use Orcs for this clan instead of what might be the obvious elves for no reason other than I’ll be using them for the wood tribe.  Plus I’m still waiting for the Reaper Bones II kickstarter delivery that has the centaurs for that race.


This is a pretty good mishmash of parts and pieces.  I wanted to make my orcs a little different than the green ape-like orcs that are everywhere and more of an civilized tribal society with a tropical flair.  I started by using Mantic orc bodies and adding GW Chaos Marauder arms and GW Beastmen shields.



I wanted to go with earthy colors and gave them a brown skin with a green, tan and blue color palette, similar to the earth when viewed from space.  The ranged troops are using spears instead of bows and the healers are musicians.



I used the Reaper Bones Orc Hunter Spearman for the leader.  I cut of the right arm at the elbow and replaced it with a sword from the bits box.  I removed the spear remains from the left hand and added a shield.



I thought the shield was a little wimpy so I had to come up with something that would make it a little more severe.  I chopped some tips off two disposable flossing tools and attached them to the back of a bigger shield.



It’s a little over the top but, hey, he’s the leader and needs to be easily recognized anywhere on the table.


In addition, I added the Reaper Bones Earth Element to finish the clan out.


As usual everything still needs to be based and I need to come up with their magic spells.

More to come…


Night Owl

Cthulhu – inks and craft paints

Last night I got started on the big fella and before I knew it he was done.


I mixed up some ink, Liquitex matte medium, Anita’s extender, and some tap water for each color and started slopping it on.  The orange and yellow were done the same way with craft paints since I don’t have yellow or orange inks.


I used the colors as the picture shows going from purple to blue to red, then orange and yellow.

The matte medium(?) has a strange property in that I can’t seem to photograph the finished product very well.  I had the same trouble with the chaos tree using the same technique.  I suppose making a light box should be added to my to-do list.

Inside photography doesn’t seem bright enough while outdoor photography is almost too much.





Although it isn’t as vibrant as I had seen in my head it is what it is and I’m pretty happy with it.





So now I need to figure out how to base him.  I’m not impressed with the base that came with him as it seemed like a quick afterthought.  The problem lies in the distance that his tail sticks out.

Maybe rocks and tide pools, hmm.

Thanks for looking,

Night Owl

Basing Marathon

I find myself currently between big projects and that is a great time to tie up a lot of loose ends on other projects that need attention.  I have a few buildings that I’ve built over time that never really got completed.  That is to say they worked for what I needed at the time but always had an “unfinished” feel to them.

So while I was basing and wrapping up the Cloud Tribe I decided to continue with the basing and finish up some structures while I had everything out.



I always keep an eye out during the Christmas season for anything that might work and last year I picked up a couple of ceramic gazebos at the dollar store and some Christmas Village houses at the Thrift store.  Primed, painted, and weathered they work pretty good for our needs.



I like to mix my own blends of turf and have found that adding 1/3 sawdust to Woodland Scenics flock will give me more of a natural colored blend.


I use “plastic” foam board for bases and both Hirst Arts roof molds and textured wallpaper for the roofs.


This is the same blend I used to finish up the Cloud Tribe with.



So it feels good to get those done and it has given me the itch to start some new buildings.  Time to clean the workbench and build something new!


Night Owl



The Cloud Tribe

It’s time for the next skirmish crew.  Introducing the Cloud Tribe.  Their main element of power is air with a water influence.


I’m using mostly the Alkemy Jade Empire miniatures for this race, with a few additions such as the WOTC Drunken Master and a few dollar store plastic tigers.



I’ve converted the Hell Dorado Soul Carrier upper body with a set of Persian cavalry legs and mounted him on a water ox that I found for a buck at the thrift store a while back.




Since air is readily available his job is to provide the water necessary to cast spells such as:

  • Cloud Shroud – cast on one allied unit will deflect one point of damage
  • Wind Burst – cast on enemy unit and forces that unit backwards 3 spaces
  • Layer of Fog – For two turns, all enemy movement is halved, all enemy ranged units do half damage
  • Air Elemental – Summons air elemental within 2 spaces of caster
  • Water Jet – launches jet of water doing one point of damage

Their animal companions are the Clouded Leopards (did anyone guess that last week?)  I tried to emulate the same pattern but bring in the blue and cream from the army color scheme.  At first I wasn’t completely sold on it but it is growing on me.




They obviously have an Eastern flavor to them so I wanted to continue with that theme and used an aquarium decoration for the display board.


I added a small waterfall and some plastic bamboo.




I still need to base the miniatures and come up with some kind of cloud or water crystals.  I’ve got some Christmas ornament icicles that may be worth experimenting with.  That will keep me busy this week.

Thanks for looking,

Night Owl



A Piece that has Haunted Me for over Two Years

Fall is a great season – hockey kicks off, frosty mornings, and the changing of the the colors on the Rocky Mountains.  So in tribute to the upcoming season of All Hallows Eve I decided to tackle a project that has been haunting me for over two years.  The Tree of Chaos:


I picked up this Micro Art piece during a Black Friday sale in 2011.  It was too good of a price to pass up.  I remember getting it, looking at it, and thinking “Oh gosh…what do I do with this now?”  So I put it back in the box and onto the shelf it went.

A year went by and after my wife and I “gifted” it back and forth a couple of times (we were both intimidated by it!) I finally decided it was time to paint it.  I cleaned it, primed it, looked at it closely and said “Oh gosh…what do I do with this now?”  So I put it back in the box and onto the shelf it went.


This week I decided to face my fears and jump in with both feet.




The irony is it only took me two evenings to paint it.  Other than the skulls on the base it was completely done with ink washes, glazes and dry brushing.  The key was I didn’t stop to over think anything this time.  I just grabbed it, started slapping brown on the bark and then I couldn’t stop.


I’m happy as all with the way it turned out.

The moral of the story for me is not to be afraid to try new topics, new methods, or new projects that might challenge my comfort zone.

I’ll end this weeks post with a little game.  Next week I’m starting a new race for my Battle Board Skirmish game.  The tribes’ element is in the name of the animal in this picture.  Can you guess what it is?

game element 2

(I’ll give you a hint: it is not a snow leopard)

Thanks for looking.

Night Owl