Maximum Warhammer interview

I was invited by Shawn of the Maximum Warhammer website to an interview that consisted of questions from their in-house forum members. Although I was warned by Shawn that some of the questions can be a little "off topic" at times, I found the forum members to be a great group with an admittedly odd sense of humor. Surprisingly they were not interested in a "how-to" type of article, rather they wanted to know what types of paints I used, my opinions on the Citadel miniature range, how long I've been painting, etc. So if you are interested in knowing a little more about me, you can view the article here:

Maximum Warhammer is no longer availble online, but a transcript of the interview follows below:

1) How long did it take to paint all of those minis?
2) Approx. on average how many hours did one model take to fully paint?
3) Did you use only Citidital Paints?
4) Wanna paint my Space Wolves army? theres only 50 models! 5 tanks! Please? no, thats ok! LOL

Hello Enertia! My Ultramarines army has been a work in progress for say 6 years now. Most display miniatures have anywhere from 20-30 hours of painting. A miniature in a gaming squad may have 6 hours or less each. I like Citadel paints, both the current batch, and the old flip top variety (Coat D Arms).
Im afraid I cant paint your Space Wolves for fear of upsetting my Ultramarines. (They were very disturbed with Leonatos:)

What do you find is the best way to impress a judge with a model --- in order to get your model noticed?

Hmmm. Well DragonFyre most painting competitions are judged by a group of people, not a single judge. Thus it is very difficult to make an impression on a particular person. Judges BTW are very subjective people. I feel they tend to rate highly qualities that they themselves cannot achieve. As humans its not easy to be 100% objective.
My advice is to strive for YOUR personal best, and not to the whims and fancies of the judges.

VLRM Lord:
What's the name of the demon he sold his soul to? Is that demon accepting more souls?

Why the Golden Demon of course, and hes more voracious than Khorne(dog)!!!!

Eternal Chaos Lord:

How long did it take for you to be able to paint that well?
Do u have any special techniques that you use when painting?

I've been building plastic models (airplanes) for 20 years now. I painted my first miniature about 14 years ago, but did not really get into painting miniatures until 7 years ago.

Do you think GW produce the best miniatures?
What's your favourite miniature that you've painted?
Which model would you like to paint next and why?
Do you take inspiration from the world around you or is it all in your mind?
If I were to give you $200 would you give me your Leonatos model

I dont really follow a certain miniature company; many often use so many sculptors that they dont have a coherent style. Rather I follow certain sculptors. Among my favorites Jes Goodwin for anything related to Space Marines. I also happen to love the Imperial Missionaries, Commissar Yarrick and Bretonnian Female Mages from Brian Nelson. The Perry twins also put out great sculpts.
In the US I happen to love Chris Fitzpatricks upcoming Witch Elves. Im an extremely big fan of Sandra Garrity at Reaper. Her females with robes, and equine miniatures are second to none.
As for my favorite miniature, its a toss up between Captain Augustus, Captain Leonatos, or the Unicorn. Captain Augustus is cool, because its me, an original, and even Games Workshop doesnt have one in their collection J! Leonatos is significant to me because with him I earned Best Single Miniature, something I set out to achieve since I started competing 6 years ago. (Talk about a long term goal!) So at this point in time it wouldnt hurt me if I didnt earn another Golden Demon I achieved the goal I set out for. The Unicorn is another favorite because its a gift. It was really difficult locating the miniature because its long out of production, and converted, painted, and based with my sweetie in mind. All have deep personal meaning to me, so Im not selling!!! J
Im waiting anxiously for the Inquisitor models; specifically the 54mm scale Space Marine. Pictures are up on Portent, and I hope it arrives soon so I can have one ready for the US Golden Demons.

friend Pedro Garca:
Which kind of paint do you use (acrylics, enamels...)? Which manufacturer/s do you prefer?
How many highlights do you usually apply?
Which colours have been more difficult to master?
Which army/armies do you own (Ultramarines, it seems...)?
How did you enter the 40k world?
Do you play a lot or do you prefer painting?
Which army motivates you the most for painting?

Hi Pedro! I use only acrylics for most applications, with a preference towards both the old and new Citadel. I sometimes use solvent base metallics, but this is rare. Im experimenting with Vallejo vinyl acrylic paints from Spain.
On an average gaming quality miniature, I will use 2-3 highlights. On display models, 7-9 highlights. The number isnt important, as long as you have smooth transitions and have achieved the lightness you desire.
I havent had too much trouble mastering any colors per se, especially since paint manufacturers often have lighter and darker shades of the primary colors. I feel choosing complimentary color combinations is more important. For instance using red with green, or blue with orange.
The only coherent army I have: Ultramarines! I have painted single figures of other armies/races though.
I discovered 40k back in 1986-87 with the original Rogue Trader book, and the box of 30 plastic Imperial Space Marines. With Space Marines I enjoy reading about their backgrounds, their history and their fanatical devotion as saviors of Mankind. Come oneveryone wants to be a Space Marine<G>! I dont play much of the games, preferring to paint more. I do love to play Epic 40K, and wonder why it never took with everyone else.

VLRM Lord:
Where do you get inspiration? GW products, evidently, but anything else?
Do you listen to music/ watch TV (at least have it on)/whatever when painting? If so, what do you like to listen to/watch/whatever?
Have you tried larger scale (54 mm) minis? What do you think of them?
What do you use for modelling? The normal green stuff? Which tools do you use?
Have you painted minis by other manufacturers, such as i-Kore? Can we see a Xiao 3.14 PI by you, please?

My inspiration comes from a lot of places. Im inspired with dramatic poses for conversions while skimming comic books that I never buy. Aliens, Batman, and Gladiator are movies that I love. Can you imagine the havoc a simple Space Marine Scout can cause to the terrorists in Die Hard??? :)
Ok, back to inspirational sources for example, I look at weathering on construction equipment when working on my military models, and when I start a project, I gather as much reference materials, and choose elements I like. This may include searches of similar subjects on the web, or collecting old White Dwarf articles, etc. Eventually it becomes a decision of which ideas you like and discarding the rest, or modifying them to suit you personal tastes. BTW paintings by Larry Elmore are a great source of inspiration for fantasy miniatures.
When painting I tend to listen to soundtracks from movies. I love Conan the Barbarian, Broken Arrow, Bram Stokers Dracula, Braveheart, and Gladiator. I also like Sneaker Pimps, Ks Choice, Sarah McLachlan, Sarah Brightman, No Doubt and Andrea Bocelli. I dont have a TV in my painting room.
I happen to like 54mm miniatures. Theres a huge following in the historical 54mm scale, in fact most armor (tanks) models are in that scale. Inquisitor will allow me to combine my love of historical miniature with Warhammer 40K.
I like to use Kneadatite (greenstuff) for sculpting. I also like Magic Sculp, and Milliput. Each has their own strengths and weaknesses, so dont be afraid of mixing different epoxy putties to get the consistency you like. I currently sculpt with a needle in an old pin vise, and a spoon shaped paint mixing tool from Tamiya. Im looking for a nice set of wax carvers to supplement my tools.
As for other miniatures, yes, Im interested in Void, Fenryl, Rackham, and Cronopia, so Xaio 3.14 will be on my web page some day!

Do you think Epic scale infantry really deserve the effort you've obviously put into them?

Of course! My efforts earned me a 2nd place Golden Demon award after all! I get a kick out of seeing the reaction of folks who cant believe theres a 6mm tall Marneus Calgar! The Epic models were not created to compete, rather I just wanted to challenge myself and see if I could paint on more details than the Heavy Metal team. I also wanted to see if I could add the various weapon specialists missing in the miniature range. Thus you see only one of each troop type. Not a realistic gaming army by any means. My Epic gaming army is pretty boring though: spray Blue, paint guns red, and base with flock. No details at all!

Speaking of Green Stuff, ask him if he only uses that sold by GW or if he knows of a better source for the same or a better brand. I have yet to find a decent equivalent.

I've always wondered where those prodigious sculptor/painter types get all the money and time for such projects.
Why not ask Mr. Wong about that? Obviously he likes to game, but where does he find the time to do such eye-poppingly meticulous work?

Well King Fun, I happen to buy the blister of Kneadatite from Games Workshop. However if you look inside the blister, youll find the address and phone number of the manufacturer who will be happy to sell you a fresh batch. They also manufacture a blue and brown putty, better suited for hard mechanical sculptures.
I actually don't have as much time to paint or sculpt as often as I like. I sneak in some sculpting or model assembly during dinner or TV time, and if Im really inspired, Ill go without sleeping for the night. If you take half the time you spend in front of the TV painting, youll be amazed at how much your productivity will increase. Its just a balance of time! As for money I work 2 jobs, so the bulk of my earnings go to cost of living expenses. Whats left I put into my recreational fund, which I divide between my many hobbies, and hanging out with friends/traveling.

I know how fast (or rather, how slow) a painter I am, but how long does it take for him to finish a piece (one marine, one squad, with/without conversion work)?

I tend to be a slow and meticulous painter, not stopping until everything is perfect. This is actually a handicap especially if you have a huge army to paint. I should leave good enough alone, and not try to do my best sometimes. This was a difficult situation for me when painting for my local hobby shop, because they dont want my best work, and they need gaming miniatures.FAST!
So to answer you question, a gaming squad takes about 20 hours or so, without conversions, minimal clean up, and spray basecoats, and store bought flock.

) How highly do you rate Citadel paints?
2) What are you working on at the moment?
3) How many times had you entered the Golden Demon comp before you won one?
4) How did you feel when you won said demon?
5) Did you ever expect to get these questions sent to you by MW? If not, why not? (cool question eh?)
6) How did you paint that Land Raider you did? It looks like it was airbrushed, but with the gaps inbetween the Land Raider doors how did you do it?
7) Who should with the UEFA Champions league, Man U or Valencia? (heh)

Yes these are good questions!
I rate Citadel colors highly. I dont have a problem with their paint bottle design because I NEVER shake them. Rather I open the bottles carefully, and stir it well with a small stick. The only faults with the paints themselves is their tendency to dry slightly darker in color than when wet. This is annoying especially when you are doing fine transitions in colors.
As for my current projectswell I just finished the Unicorn on my updated site, plus a Landraider for a friend whos been waiting since last year. Im taking my break from painting, and Im back to collecting Batman memorabilia!
I entered in the Golden Demon in 1995,1996, and 1997 before winning 2 Demons in 1998. I was definitely thrilled to win especially since I didnt for 3 years prior to that! I also felt very self-conscious standing on the stage with so many folks staring at me. Now, I live it all up!!<G>
As for Maximum Warhammer, Im actually very thankful that Shawn has given me this opportunity to chat with all of you!
The Ultramarines Landraider, is indeed airbrushed. The techniques I use harkens back to my military model days. I often combine airbrushing with paint brush work on my vehicles.

Can you tell us something about future projects? Are you already working on the next Golden Demon?

I'm always working on several projects at once. On my desk are various Space Marine characters, some Rackham Keltios Females, and plastic airplane models. What I need to do is concentrate on building up my army with more vehicles and Dreadnoughts! I havent decided on the Golden Demons yet, a year ago I didnt even come up with Leonatos until almost April!

- Which paint colour tastes the best? The worst?
- If you were a tree, what kind of tree would you be? (gotta put that one in there...)

They tend to taste the same after a while, but Tamiya is the all time worst. And Im an Evergreen tree<G>!

What is the average airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?

You didnt specify mph or kph.:)

Desert Ghost Exarch:
What is the formula for the distance covered by a standard warp travelling spacecraft in a given amount of time?

How long you been playing Warhammer?

What's your favourite unit in your army?

What is your favourite game?

What army do you enjoy working on the most?

Do you play in tournments regularly?

Who do you look up to for painting advice?

What person inspires you or whose models do you enjoy to look at or impressed by?

HERESY!! Any true member of the Astronomican knows we are all subject to the fickle nature of the tides and eddies when traveling the warp. All praise to the Emperor!!!
Seriously now Ive been involved with Warhammer 40k since its introduction ~1987, I think? Never played Warhammer but I do own a few army books (Bretonnian and Undead) and the rules.
I happen to like my Tactical Squad the best. Whats there not to like about 10 common grunts pointing their boltguns at you? J I like them because all 10 miniatures have the best blending jobs on them I could achieve at that time, and they have hand painted arrows on their shoulder pads. I put a lot of effort into them, no painting shortcuts at all a true test of patience and resolve!
I havent tried the Grand Tournaments although I am interested in them. Ill probably do well in the painting category, but will get killed by an army of Grots armed with spitballs. As soon as I paint up 1500 points of Ultramarines, Ill be in Baltimore. However I spend so much time on converting and sculpting that I never seem to break 1000 points in my army.
I really dont have anyone really to look for advice when painting. Im pretty much a self-learner, though I did learn a lot from the OOP Heavy Metal Painting guides. Back when I started, Internet access was very limited, and there were no web pages devoted to our hobby. And many painting books centered on historical modeling, not exactly what we are doing.
As for a source of inspiration, my friend Tim Lison (2x GD winner) constantly pushes me to do my best both in sculpting and painting. Hes been very helpful, and its nice to have a painting buddy who is willing to share his tips.
The folks who I dont personally know but who I greatly admire would be: Brett Dewald (11 US Golden Demons!!), Mike McVey (who else), Kim Syberg, Joe Hill, Ben Jefferson, Ruth Hollerbach, Jennifer Haley, and Chris Borer. I have very high respect for those in our hobby who can sculpt and paint well, and examples being Dave Andrews, and Mark Bedford, of the Citadel design team. Both gents are great sculptors and won the Open Category at the UK Games Day.


Well folks, thats all for now! Again I would like to thank Shawn at Maximum Warhammer for having me over to chat with you all. Id like to leave a bit of advice about miniatures:
Make sure that if you do intend to compete, that all traces of mold lines and casting flaws have been removed. Many well-painted entries are rejected because of such a simple error.
Dont base your miniature as an afterthought. Too many well-painted miniatures are ruined by flock covering the feet of the miniature. This is sloppy, and shows you ran out of patience with your own work. Its like handing in a well written carefully edited progress report at work on torn, recycled newsprint. You need to be as neat as possible when adding flock to the base, a well-painted miniature deserves no less!
Dont fret if you dont place in a painting competition. With so many entries vying for the top 3 spots its really difficult to win especially if you are trying to conform to a judges expectations of what looks good and what doesnt.
As long as you see improvement in each successive miniature, youre on the right track, thus be proud of your achievements.
Most importantly, never fear trying new techniques in painting. As with anything in life, our hobby takes a bit of time, practice, and a lot patience! Do not give up, and your efforts will be rewarded. Keep experimenting and set realistic goal for you to achieve. You many well surprise yourself! With that I wish you all good luck, and remember have fun, it's supposed to be a hobby!



Return to Articles page at Miniature-Art