It was February 2017. Most of you probably hadn’t even met me, at that point, lingering at a modest sub-200 on Twitter, no stream, no website… Everything was in infancy and I was doing what I had said I would never do again. The faint sound of plastic being snipped and scraped could be heard and a slight sting of plastic glue lingered in the air.
I was back in the hobby.
I had been an off-and-on hobbyist since the late 90s. My last bout of it saw the loss of 99% of everything I had, due to a flood. Most everything was taken out by shovel, along with the thick mud that it was all encased in. It just felt too daunting a task to replenish all my paints and start anew.
The resurgence started here. It wasn’t much, but it was a solid set place to store everything I had; which was not much either. I had an old computer stand that was still in very good shape to act as the table. I went to Lowes and bought precut pieces of thin wood and sprayed them purple, using them as shelves for what little paint I had. My hobby tools went in a cardboard storage box I found at Michaels and any bits were tossed into a pink shoebox. My remnant of the past was an OTT Lite I had gotten for Christmas years ago and had been in storage since my hobby days were over. I brought it up from the basement and brought it out of retirement to wrap this modest setup together.
Getting back into the swing of things, I had told myself that I would only be doing specialists games; I focused on Bloodbowl and Warhammer Quest at the time. I managed to get about four months out of this desk, my paint collection slowly building along with my first re-entry into Warhammer 40k. It wasn’t until June that I would ditch the computer desk for what would quickly turn into a constantly changing setup.
I had found a cheap L shaped desk on craigslist and thought it would look great in my living room and serve for some more hobby room. I had a docking station for my laptop, so I used it as a duel purpose area, not knowing how key this would be until later. I also added storage areas on both sides; a glass shelving unit for my tools and supplies and a plastic storage cabinet for sprues. My paints simply went into a shoe box lid, at this point. They would not stay there for long, however. Even at this point, I was already awaiting a solution.
Over the next couple weeks I would get situated with my new paint rack system; you can see above that I started playing around with different sections. This was picked up from back2baseix.com. They make a really nice paint rack system, with options for just about any paint brand. I ended up getting their largest bundle, plus a couple addons for bits storage (seen on the right side). The docking station was pushed off the table and onto the glass shelf unit and I added a cutting mat from JoAnne Fabrics. This setup would last for a long long time. More paints were quickly added, outgrowing what I had space for. My bits and sprue collection blew up and by the new year, I needed to find a new solution once more.
I moved the whole desk from the wall and created a U shaped space, with it. The paint pot count jumped from one to three; general use, metallic, and whites. I had received a new comfy chair for Christmas and said goodbye to the kitchen table chair. The rack was completely full at this point, plus I had a couple more storage sections for it. I purchased storage bins from Walmart and organized my ork sprues by kit, having so many at this point that I could do that and still need full drawers to store each different group. I was also streaming by this time, , and had camera and microphone setup at the table. It was still feeling cluttered at this point, however. I needed a bit more space and some better lighting.
Which brought me to my current setup: I have included links to everything I currently use, found at the bottom of this post.
I picked up an identical L shaped computer desk, turning it into a full U. This immediately opened up the area and cleared up the cramped feeling I had been having. I went through and upgraded a few things while I was at it.
More sections of the rack were added. With the extra space of an extra desck, I was afforded the room to expand, adding in enough to not only fit the entire GW line but the FW weathering powders and my old GW inks.
My ottlite was replaced by two LED bar lights, which really helped light up my work area. I moved the rest of my storage back onto the desk, putting my tools in front of me. More cameras were added, a total of three, for pallet cam and for a face cam, when streaming. This setup set my paints fairly far away from my working area, on purpose. This is intended keep my work area clean. I use the insert tray from the GW project box as a pot tray, only taking the paints I need, and putting them on that. When done, I put them back and keep things from getting too cluttered.
Lastly, I was able to add a lightbox to the far end of my desk, giving me a clean area for photography. My notebooks and other materials filled in the rest.
It has come along way in just over a year’s time. I already have ideas of what to add next, so I fully anticipate it to be an ever changing setup. Hope you found this transformation entertaining and, if you see something you have questions about, email or comment here. Also, everything I use will have a link below, if you are interested in checking them out.
mic stand and filter
Paint rack system: