Sunday, August 30, 2015

Manchester City Complete

I finished with Manchester City today; same as I did with Liverpool, I added numbers to the front of the shorts and also added Premier League patches on each figures shoulders.

Liverpool and Manchester City in the opening match of the season!

Arsenal is on the painting table, halfway complete. Hopefully I'll get them done in the next few days, and then on to Manchester United.

As always,
thanks for looking!

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Liverpool Completed

The irony of me completing my Liverpool squad on a day when the real team were absolute garbage is painful; I couldn't possibly be happier with the final results on my figures, the real squad... that could be a whole other post!

I went ahead and did numbers on the front of the shorts and really feel this has made a huge improvement to the figures.

I also went ahead and made Premier League patches and placed them on everyone's shirts as well; another improvement that I feel really make the figures look the part!


I even went ahead and put a captain's armband on Hendo!

Overall, extremely pleased with the finished product, despite a lack of varied head sculpts. Manchester City just need their shorts numbers and Premier League patches and they are completed. Arsenal is already halfway finished; based, boots painted, name and number plates all printed out. Now the question is who do I paint as my fourth and final team? United, Chelsea, Tottenham, or someone else? 

As always,
Thanks for looking!

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Liverpool Updated/ Conneaut D-Day

In my steroid filled rage from yesterday (I guess it would be smart to place a disclaimer here if you didn't see yesterday's post; I got poison ivy really bad last week and a doctors visit on Monday had steroids prescribed to help), I powered through my entire Liverpool squads kit logos and name/numbers on the backs of thier shirts. And honestly, I couldn't be happier!

The biggest thing I was concerned with, which I mentioned in yesterday's post, was regarding players changing throughout the season and also sponsorship changes to start the season. I was playing around on the computer and printed out some kit logos on regular paper (after resizing them!) and just cut them out and glued them right onto the figures. If you look closely you can definitely see where the transition isn't clean, but I think this is the way I'm going to go moving forward.

This way of creating the kits is going to be way more cost effective and also much easier to change when players move or when next season comes around and squads have major changes.

I'll call them 85% complete, as I'm on the fence regarding putting numbers on the shorts, which I absolutely know will look brilliant, and I was also kicking around the idea of maybe painting just a circle or square on the shoulders of the shirts to indicate the Premier League logo. Washes still need applied as well, but they can easily get on the pitch for a match right now, which ultimately was the immediate goal; pun intended!

I'm currently working on Manchester City's kits, but with the Conneaut D-Day event starting tomorrow, I don't see much progress happening over the weekend. I've participated in this event for the past four years and it is absolutely one of the most incredible experiences I've ever had. Meeting and talking with the veterans is amazing and a true honor. Each year it just keeps getting bigger and better, and has certainly earned its mark as the biggest living history event in the United States.

On Friday afternoon, the Allies and the Germans put on a football match where the uniforms closely match those from the film "Victory" or "Escape To Victory" for my overseas friends. It's an absolute blast, and certainly something I look forward to. Here's an in game photo of me right before I scored a goal last year.

My impression of what my grandfather would have looked like on June 6th.

There are three major battles that occur over the two day event. There are two Airborne battles, one Friday late afternoon and then late Saturday morning. Those are the two battles I participate in. But the main battle is a recreation of the Normandy landings on Saturday afternoon, and it is hands down one of the most visually impressive things I've ever seen. These are just a couple of photos, and it certainly doesn't do it justice. They even have Higgins boats that drop the Allies off. It's truly jaw dropping!

My grandfather was in the 82nd Airborne, 508th D. Co, 2nd Battalion, and he jumped on June 6th. Growing up I'd always heard that "grandpa jumped out of airplanes in WWII", but the reality of that was lost on a kid, and it wasn't until he passed away that I realized how absolutely incredible it was that he did that, and that he was a true hero. He never spoke about the war, and of course now I wish I had just one day to ask a million questions. He is the reason I started to participate in this event, to keep his memory, and all those that have gone before him, alive. This part could go on for a while, but I'll keep it short as it always becomes a bit emotional...

As always, thanks for looking!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Liverpool / Manchester City

Quite a while since my last post; I was doing some work on the farm early last week and ended up getting poison ivy really bad. So bad that I actually had to go to the doctors two days ago, something that I clearly should have done late last week! I'll spare you any pictures or details except both my feet and legs, as well as both my hands and arms were a complete mess. These last 10 days have been probably the worst I've ever been through.

I'm currently on steroids for medication, and in addition to wanting to constantly lift weights, watch The Jersey Shore, go tanning, and steal kids lunch money, I actually was able to hold a paint brush today! I've finally got both Liverpool and Manchester City finished to the basic standard, though still lots to do to get them to where I envision them.

The next step is to attempt to put decals on the fronts of the shirts with the sponsors. I've got Testors decal paper, but I'm still waiting on 2 bottles of Micro Sol setting solution to arrive to help with the decals.  I'm really on the fence about putting numbers on the backs of the shirts as well; players change so much that I can easily see having to repaint figures often (and I've only got 14 field players) and that really isn't very appealing! But I know that they will look 100 times better with names and numbers on them. I guess it's all going to come down to how easily the decal process goes. Stay tuned...
I really wish the figures had the separate head system, I realized after the fact that I didn't have a bald figure for Pablo Zabaleta. Oh, well.

Liverpool basic colors completed.

My first attempt at details; I tried to put tattoo markings on Coutinho's arm. All the figures still need their wash and sealed, so maybe that will improve the look; hopefully.
A quick photo of both squads on the pitch. Next up is Arsenal, for my mates Jim and Chad!
As always, thanks for looking!

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Corner Kick

My son ordered four bags of soccer (I know, football - apologies to my friends across the pond!) teams from Bob Wiltrout at Quantum Castings and they arrived earlier in the week. There are 15 figures per bag; one goalkeeper and 14 field players, allowing you to have 4 substitutes.

I  unfortunately didn't get a chance to play Corner Kick first hand at Historicon, but my son did and absolutely fell in love with the game; bought the rules right there at the table and ordered four squads the day after we got back from our trip. Pretty impressive when you think about it, especially for a 16 year old! 

These figures have immediately jumped to the front of the "to be painted" line. I guess that's good and bad; obviously good because this will get Jakob and I gaming together straight away, and then obviously bad because I sure as heck don't need another project!  Clearly I can't even finish the projects sitting to my right and left as it is. 

I started off with our beloved Liverpool. I cleaned up the figures a bit, glued them into thier bases, and filled the gaps in the slotted bases with some Green Stuff. I also added a washer to the bottom of the base to give the figures some more weight.  What you notice right away is that these figures are absolutely screaming for a separate head system.  One can only hope, but Quantum Castings is just Bob creating the figures in his garage, so your not going to get a Warlord or Artizan quality cast; the heads in particular are a little rough. Plus they are metal, plastics definitely give you more defined features, especially when talking about the heads in my opinion. I think that the head sculpts are a bit rough because you can see that  changes were attempted to get as many varied looks as possible; long hair, bald heads, dreadlocks. And a few of the heads just look too big. What is going to be Mamadou Sakho, second from the left, his head just looks awkward. Still though, hats off to Bob for making these figures available; and reading through some posts on their Yahoo group for Corner Kick, he knows the potential for the quality and variety for separate heads, so fingers crossed for what may come.

I've got a lot of ideas for the kits and all the  items that I'm going to need to make that happen are on order so hopefully everything will be here by the end of next week.  Here is my WIP of Philippe Coutinho. I flocked the base with Woodland Scenics grass just to see how it looked, and I used my P-Touch to make a name plate for the base. I don't like it though, and think that it should be black lettering on a clear, not white, backing. But again, that is part of what's coming next week. Still lots to do with the shirt and shorts, the skin and boots. Stay tuned!

Here are a few WIP photos of some soccer balls I'm working on. They are 1/4" ball bearings glued to a #6 washer. I've got 12 that I'm working on and we'll see how the detailing will go here shortly. I really like the look of them so far though! 

Here is another WIP photo of the measuring sticks used in the game. I think I want to paint each stick a different color to help identify each type; sprint red, half movement blue, etc.

Meanwhile, until I can get the four squads painted up (we're going to do Arsenal, Chelsea and haven't decided on which Manchester team yet; it's quickly becoming clear we need to buy more squads! Especially seeing as I love the movie "Victory", or "Escape To Victory" for my overseas friends, it really fits with all my WWII models and it would be really neat to get the Allied and German squads on the table!) we've played a few games of Corner Kick using my old Subbuteo teams. I ran Liverpool and Jakob ran Chelsea for both games; game one was a 1-0 win for Chelsea with Hazard scoring for the bad guys and the second match was a 2-2 tie, with Captain Fantastic scoring on a free kick and the ever injured Daniel Sturridge scoring the second goal.

The German squad from "Victory" I painted years ago

Overall a great game that I'm really looking forward to showing and playing with all our footy friends here in the area; and hopefully getting them to buy some squads themselves!
As always, thanks for looking!