It took about a month but I've finally completed Olfo, or as I'm calling it now 'Lost in the Dark.' I liked the forest setting but still felt like it needed something more, some ominous presence in the dark to add some drama to the piece. In the end I drew inspiration from the Mirkwood scene from the Hobbit (and Shades' suggestion) and went with a giant spider. It took a bit of searching online to find a figure I was happy with. The GW ones tend to be too cartoony and I wanted to be able to pose the legs. Somewhat randomly I found this giant spider kit from Otherworld Miniatures. Truly massive on a 28mm scale, even at 1/35 scale this guy is pretty huge. What really sold me on the kit were those long slender legs. I used a small pin to attach the main body of the spider to the tree. Then I posed the legs with a little bit of bending, some filing, and some green stuff. Their attachments aren't quite as secure as I'd like, but with the pin supporting the weight of the spider they should be okay. Just don't want to drop this one or knock it over!
I found a nice tutorial on making spider webs from UHU glue over at the 5th Dimension blog. Surprisingly simple and I really like the end result. In the tutorial they apply the glue strings to a pair of tooth picks and then to the base, I skipped that intermediate step and went directly to stretching them around the trees.
I've submitted this guy to the contest over at the 5th Dimesion. Submissions are accepted until September 5th, so it will be a little while before we see how he does. In addition, this past weekend I took him up to San Jose for the Bay Area Open 2014. I was lucky enough to win Best in Show with him!
I wanted to give a quick blurb about the painting competition because they're trying to start up something new and I think it's an interesting idea. The group running it is trying to create a circuit of painting competitions culminating in their Dragonslayer competition which will pit winners from the different circuit events against each other for the Dragonslayer title. They've got events planned for OcGRE in Anaheim (Nov 21-23 if the show happens), Templecon in RI (Feb 6-9), Las Vegas Open (Feb 20-22), G&GCon in London (sometime in 2015), CaptainCon in MA (2015), and Califaux in Sacramento CA (2015). This is all still pretty new and I'm guessing they're looking for more conventions where they can sponsor competitions. The entries are judged using the open system, so there's not just a 1st, 2nd, 3rd. All entries are rated against a set standard and they hand out as many gold, silver, and bronze medals as are earned (not just one of each). You can enter at the master level or the journeyman. Another neat feature is their scoring system. You're rated out of 10 points and your total score is the average of the 5 judges. It's all on the computer so you get a print out of your scores along with any comments the judges make. I thought the comments were especially nice. Always helpful to hear what they liked, what they thought could be improved, etc.
After all the scoring they pick an overall best in show that wins a special trophy (this will be unique to each event and fit into the dragonslayer theme), some other prizes (the BAO had a Badger airbrush and the complete set of minitaire paints), and entry into the culminating dragonslayer event. I think it's all an interesting idea, they just need publicity and people to go enter their work! So keep an eye on their website for more info