Author: hobbyistgirl

Age of Sigmar Duel Paint Competition



I recently entered into the Games Workshop local Age of Sigmar Duel painting competition. I had never actually done a painting comp before, and always wanted to get into them more as a fun push than an attempt to win. The idea of creating a display piece from characters seemed fun. I saw it being a nice break from my usual projects, and a chance to play around with basing; something I am always the first to admit isn’t my strong suit.

I immediately knew what I would work on: I had recently done up a darkoath warqueen and thought it would be great if I pitted her up against a Neave that I had been wanting to paint for ages. The whole thing had to be on an actual Games Workshop base, so I would have to find something that would allow the most dynamic scenery I could muster.

The warqueen was done up in the traditional colors. I used a doombull brown, druchi violet, mournfang brown, skrag brown progression on her cape. Reds were my traditional Mephiston, Agrax, evil sunz, wild rider and the bone was just zandri, agrax, ushabti, and screaming skull. Her hair was squig orange, carroburg crimson, followed by troll slayer orange.

IMG_0983I used a true metallic metal technique on Neave to acheive her armor. She started with a base coat of 50/50 Abyssal blue from scale 75 and Leadbelcher. The blue grey from the Abyssal would prove a nice tie in  to the other blue pieces on her as I moved forward. Next I did a 3:1 Leadbelcher to Abyssal, then straight ledbelcher. The whole time, as I am gradually highlighting, I am keeping in mind where the light hits her to create a natural looking shine. Next was a 50/50 ironbreaker/leadbelcher and then straight ironbreaker.  This was the start of the super shined areas. Lastly, used Stormhost Silver on the brightest areas of her armor. The last step was an edge shading of my base coat in the recesses.


Her hair was a blonde progression similar to how I do bone, but instead of Agrax I used Seraphim Sepia. Fenrisian gray, drakenhoff nightshade, back to fenrisian and then celestial grey made up the inner cape.

The base itself was nothing but cork that I cut, shaved, and stacked onto a gorkanaut base. Once glued, I took crayola clay and thinly applied it over the entire thing, making a complete mess! Once it dried (about a two day dry time) I sprayed it with Mechanicus Standard gray and went back over it with the same color, by brush, to get a solid even color. I washed lightly with Nuln oil and then drybrush highlighted with dawnstone and celetial gray. Valhallan blizzard was applied for the snow tufts, with snow flock sprinkled on top, while wet, to fluff it up a bit more. I added middenland tufts throughout the base, at the end, and added some snow in them. As you can see, I was so excited, I didn’t even get a finished pic of the base before I mounted the Warqueen.


The base needed something else. It seemed a little bare with just the two fighters atop it. Using some spare Shadesipre minis, I created some casualties to spread around; one for each faction. I had to chop them up and use greenstuff to reposition them, but all in all they worked great.  Once painted I glued them on to look as though they had been slain by those remaining standing.

And with that the display was done!



It was an extremely fun project to work on. I am very happy how it turned out… and at the final results!


Thanks for reading! Please feel free to leave any questions or comments. See you next time! 🙂



Evolution of a Paint Desk

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.

IMG_0754The 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.

IMG_0825I 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 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.

Take care,

❤ Soph

computer desks:

LED lamps:


Logitech c920

desk mount



mic stand and filter

Paint rack system:







Da Bloody Skull Boyz: WIP 8

Last game of escalation worked out very well, for me; giving me my first win. The MVP of the army was, without a doubt, the Squiggoth; seen in WIP 7. Chomp Chomp, as he is now known, chewed through two leman russ tanks, one shotting each. With such a stellar performance, it needed a second act. I couldn’t do a repeat of the project, nor was I a fan of the basic squiggoth from Forgeworld. Thus Meka Squiggoth was born.


I started by assembling the bottom half of a Gorkanaut. This would act as the main body of the Squiggoth. The hip joints were sawed off to make a flush edge on, what would eventually become, the bottom of its body. These joints would come in use later, so I set them aside.


The head of the gorkanaut kit would be used as the head for this project, as well, only inverted  so The cavity is facing forward. I assembled the legs, slightly repositioning them, and glued the two pieces together to show roughly how the beast will stand. At this point, not a whole lot of modification had been done, having only needed one gork kit. I knew, at a minimum, two would be needed, just to have the legs.

Next on the agenda was the back. Using the battlewagon kit, I fixed the outer edges of the flat bed onto the edge of the body, making it much wider than a wagon, and added the side plating. Trimming up a truck bed, I set that on top, leaving it unglued, so I could reach the cavity later. Underneath the beast, I cut and glued plasticard to plate up the gap created from removing the hip joints. For the head, I assembled the front cab of the battlewagon, minus the grill, and cut off one side of the door so it would fit around the leg joints.

I trimmed off all the extra bits on the body, making it flat, and fit on the hip joints toward the rear of the beast. Using plasticard and the guards for the hip joints, I built around the area to hide the raised edge created by this addition. I also started looking at ways to mount a turret kannon, assembling it straight from the battlewagon kit.

Adding the grill, I trimmed down most of it to make way for a plasticard covering. The exhaust work came from the dakkajet kit and was made to wrap around the head into large pipes; note that the trukk exhaust used would later be replaced by the battlewagon kit’s. The turret plate for the wagon kit was cut to fit between the cab and bed, plasticard plating covering the gap to look as built on. Doors were also added, trimming then in an arch to sit snuggly around the added shoulder guards. Lastly, the beginnings of the jaw was started by adding the left over deff rolla hinges from the Colossal Squig’s bit; never toss away your scraps 🙂

Things were starting to really take shape at this point. The bottom of the jaw was fashioned from an old leman russ dozer blade that I had in my bits box. Lining the bottom lip are the front pieces from two trukks, cut to line up. Top teeth were forges from plasticard and glues into place, while the bottom teeth were glued and trimmed onto plasticard girders. saw blades from the Goliath kit were placed in twos and glued onto plastic rod, which would be secured between each tooth for added grindy killiness.

All that was left was some glyphs here and there, wiring up the grinders, and overall gap filling. Now Meka Squiggoth is ready for rivets and paint; just in time, as escalation is less than two weeks away :O


Thanks for reading! As always, please feel free to ask on anything I may have missed covering, as well as any comments 🙂

Next post we will take a look at this big boy all painted up and possibly our next two monsters to come. The meks have their hands full, for sure!

See ya next time







Da Bloody Skull Boyz: WIP 7


I wanted to do something big this time around, for the 1000 point/round three of escalation. I figured it would be another battlewagon but what ended up happening was something completely unexpected.

This is the story of my “Counts-As” Squiggoth.

I first started with a plague furnace, building the frame just like the kit calls for.IMG_0552I trimmed the spikes off the front and back, as well as cleaned up the rope, stone and other non wooden parts to create this frame. I wanted something even more feral looking than the rest of my army. I envisioned a cart, maybe scraps from a previous wagon that had an explosion and was repurposed. Perhaps something even pulled by an animal…

I had to trim the bottom of the posts to allow the battlewagon platform to slide through. Once added, I build the back like a regular ol wagon, plus some paneling to fill small gaps. I trimmed the side panels to fit the back, allowing the treads to fit on, and the front wheels were attached in place of the wooden plague furnace wheels.

IMG_0579     I cut the front off, and added some more side plating from a separate wagon kit. The large wooden triangle frames came from the warpfire cannon kit and simply lined up and were glued in place. At this point I was firmly invested in a pull cart wagon. All it needed now was something to pull it.

And that something was this…


The Colossal Squig! This thing is really big… a lot bigger than I anticipated actually. I was starting to rethink this project, from just a battlewagon. Assembling left quite a lot of gaps, so some greenstuff work was needed to blend the skin on it.

I imagined something this size would be an ordeal to tame or wrangle up, so I added things to reflect that. I drilled some holes and, using plastic rods, drove spears into the sides of the Squig. These would end up being fairly crucial to the orks, as a way to strap the beast in. Now he just needed a steering mechanism. I chose to use the good ol carrot method for his motivation, adding two grots; one on top holding a pole made out of plastic rod, and another acting as the poor carrot, bound up in jewelers chain. I made a bit from the outside part of the Deff Rolla and some plastic rod, then securing it (and the grot on top) onto the beast with more jewelers chain. This saw the assembly phase complete.

Moving forward, I started painting the squig first. The body saw my usual progression of red; Mephiston, Agrax, Evil Sunz, and later Wild Rider red. The face Was done in a tanned flesh skintone progression; Bugmans Glow, Reikland Fleshshade, Cadian Fleshtone, Kizlev flesh and a light highlight of screaming skull. Teeth were my usual bone coloring, as well were the claws; Zandri Dust, Agrax, and then Ushabti Bone

Gums, tongue, and sacks along the head were done in the same pink progression; Screamer Pink, Carroburg Crimson, Pink Horror, then a light highlight of fulgrim pink in areas. The bone plate is where things got interesting, as far as a recipe goes. I started by washing a base of Dryad Bark with Druchi Violet.  Highlighting from there went as follows; 50/50 Dryad Bark+Xereus Purple, 50/50 Dryad Bark + Genestealer Purple, 50/50 Gorthor Brown + Genestealer Purple, Baneblade Brown and finally some Screaming Skull.

The rest was fairly straight forward for the metals and grots, who saw paint schemes just like the rest of the army thus far. This was a very lengthy paint project but very fun and challenging. With that done, I turned to the wagon. I won’t go into length on the process used, as it is the exact same as my other vehicles. The only difference is the addition of wood. I used Mournfang brown followed by Agrax Earthshade as a wash and Skrag brown, followed by Deathclaw brown as highlights.


You can see the finished wagon above. Now all that was left was attaching them and the base. I started by gluing them both, end on end, to an 8×11 piece of plasticard. Then, using a ruler (one of the plastic measuring sticks from Necromunda to be exact) as a guide, I left some card on the edges in between them, to create a slightly misshapen oval as the front base is smaller than the back. Using greenstuff, I then gapfilled to level everything out and sanded the edges to match the edge of the bases.

The End Result.

IMG_0722 (1)

I added more chains, painting them like the others, to connect the two. Basing was simply a basecoat of Baneblade Brown, a covering of Agrellan Badland, a wash of Agrax Earthshade and then Tyrant skull drybrushed across the whole thing. Rynox Hide went around the edge to finish this massive piece off.

IMG_0724 (1)Here is a Battlewagon lined up side by side, just to show the Squiggoth’s footprint.


Words can’t express how happy I am with how this turned out. It has turned into an awesome game piece as well as a nice display piece, and has fueled my desire to create even more large orky items. As a side note, he performed amazingly on the battlefield. He chewed up and ate two Leman Russ and helped me win my first victory!

Thanks for reading! I am already planning on my next wave, for the 4th match of escalation; bringing me to 1250 points. The wagon above might be getting a nice loud upgrade and perhaps a new friend to join in the feasting of tanks! All of that will be coming soon.

Take care,

❤ Soph



Da Bloody Skull Boyz: WIP 6


With the build done for the next 250 points, it was time to start painting. The bikers were the first to see paint. They saw a similar method as the previous six, before them. Here we see all nine bikers, finished!


It really looks nice to have all nine together on a board. These will be the last I do, for this army, as I move my focus toward other pieces.


The Big Mek biker was a big challenge to paint, in that the mini actual ork is half encased inside the doomwheel body. Much of the same went into this, for color schemes, but I did have to add a few new tricks. The lightning effect was a process involving stegadon scale green as a base and then washing with coelia greenshade. The layering steps were only used on the crackle effect. Sotek green formed the beginning layer, followed by temple guard blue and finally some white scar in corners and peaks for an extreme highlight.


The skull banner was done with brass scorpion as a base and washed with agrax earthshade. I used bonecrusher brass as a first layer, hitting it only in sparce areas to give it a different gleam in areas. Stormhost silver was then used as the extreme highlight, following the same line of thought for the previous step.


The battery looked too clean, so I decided to add a battery acid effect to it. This was very simple to achieve. I took small blobs of Valhallan Blizzard and covered the connectors. I tried to make random sized blobs as I placed them. I then followed up with just a little Nihilakh Oxide closer to the connectors. It was the perfect tint to give a realistic corroded battery connector.

Although I still lost match two, they were fun projects. Check out my next WIP coming very soon, to see what I did for round three. It promises to be a long one.



Da Bloody Skull Boyz: WIP 5


With my initial 500 point list behind me, I turned my eyes onto what I could add to this army, to bring it to 750. I crunched numbers and, after a few days of debate, decided to go with the following:

warbiker squad w/nob

Battlewagon w/deffrolla

Big Mek on warbike

The battlewagon would take the place of my trukk, for now, until points allowed for both. I had already briefly brainstormed what I would do for everything, while working on the initial 500 points, but now it was time to start cutting plastic.

Today, we look at the Big Mek on warbike.

This took me a lot longer to think up than my previous conversions; about a week’s time. I knew the general gist of what I was trying to accomplish, but finding the right means saw me almost putting this guy on hold. Originally, when working on my other models, I had the idea to create something similar to the beautifully cinematic scene of the Bullet Farmer in Fury Road.

Image result for bullet farmerI loved this part, and thought it would be cool to have an ork weirdboy, standing on the pedals of a bike with his arms out and head tilted back, energy coursing through him. If you know 40k ork rules, then you’ll know what I quickly found out; no weirdboy on warbike! No matter… because you CAN give a bike to a Big Mek!

A conventional warbike would be too small, at least as-is. Many of the additions I looked at just didn’t fit it right, especially  grot tank treads, servohauler treads (I really wanted treads!). In the end, while surfing GW’s site as I often do when I am looking for inspiration, I remembered the Skaven Doomwheel. It would be perfect for a weird looking Mek Bike, with a little bit of work and a few cuts.

I started by cleaning and assembling the outer wheels. The skaven model has a lot of wood to it, so we would have to fix that. The Citadel mold line scraper made short work of the wood grain and made it nice and smooth, to go for a metal plate look.


I cleaned up the center piece and removed the support for the seat, as well as the wiring and warpstone (as seen on the right). Taking a warbike, I trimmed down enough to allow a snug fit into the center. I chose the warbike with petals already attached to the body, to allow something for our Big mek to stand on.

Next was the big guy himself. I used the legs cut from a Shokk Attack gun Big Mek and a torso cut from a savage orc; one of the two orcs in the kit holding the huge spear. While I could use the arms from the savage orc, I needed to do some small greenstuff work and reposition them, adding some muscle work. To cover the gap created by joining the two body pieces together, I made a belt from greenstuff and bits from the Shokk Attack Mek, as well as added some muscle work to smooth the transition. For the back, I mounted the big battery from the mek gun, using one of the platforms from the same kit. A warbiker wheel was swapped for the original, in the back.  For the wheels, now that they were all smoothed out, I added rivets and diamond plate patches to both.

This was as far as I could go, with the kit segmented into three pieces. I glued the main three together, adding the gears to the bottom of the back. My whole idea for this character, was to have him crackling with energy. It started as a weirdboy, moving to a big mek with kustom force field. I pictured him holding two jumper cable ends together, an arch of electricity going over head. This was all before the doomwheel came into the picture, however. The wheel seemed far too big to achieve this… but what if, since it was to be made from metal, the electricity went into it and not over? I clipped off the mek’s arms at the elbows, using the prong ends from the shokk attack gun as the rest of his arms. Wrapping thin strips of greenstuff around the joint, I used tweezers and pulled at the putty until it looked like ripped flesh covering parts of the metal. I left portions of the electricity in tact, on the ends, lining them up as if to lash at the rim of the bike.

With our Mek in place, it was time to wire this bad boy up! I rolled greenstuff into two very long, thin strands and carefully looped it through the bottom of the bike, over each shoulder, and draped it slightly before connecting it to each orb end of his…..hands? Sure, we will go with hands…

Only thing left to fix was the front. I clipped off the front knobs to smooth it out and make way for my additions. At the top, I used the plate that came with the kit, connecting the two larger gears, but shaved off the skaven icon. Instead, I sanded down the back of the warbiker boss pole and fixed it atop. I created a cowcatcher using small bits of plastic rod, the large plate piece from the Ogre Kingdoms Ironblaster kit, and two claws from the Gorkanaut kit for the ends. I secured two dakkaguns from the warbike kit on each side, right above the cowcatcher, and placed a horn from the gorkanaut above it, covering where the top most knob was.

Lastly, I trimmed the top of the flag that came with the doomwheel and replaced the skaven icon with the sideways orruk banner from the orruk boar chariot kit.

Another conversion using bits from eight kits total; seems to be my magic number. I am extremely pleased with how he turned out and cannot wait to paint and field him in a couple weeks.

Next time, we will look at more bikers and a Battlewagon. Please drop me and comments or questions you may have. Thanks for reading!



Da Bloody Skull Boyz: WIP 4

Welcome back to the world of speed freaks! Last write-up saw the building process for my Bloody Skull Boyz come to a conclusion. I still need to paint them up however, and with my escalation league starting yesterday (as of writing this), I can say that I met my deadline! So, before I move into building, and doing WIP write-ups, for the next 250 points, here is what went into painting these boyz up.

IMG_0088.jpgSkin on the trukk boyz was done with an ink and then a series of washes. Anything with ork skin on it received a corax white spray primer coat. Once primed, I used yellow ink (from the old GW hex pots), agrax earthshade, riekland fleshshade, and then two coats of biel tan green. The bottom lips were screamer pink, pink horror, and then fulgrim pink. To emphasize the ridged lip look, I left the previous layer showing in recesses (sometimes creating my own “recess” for the look), almost dotting with fulgrim pink as the extreme highlight. I went with a hammered brass look for the spears: brass scorpion washed with agrax earthshade, followed by a light highlight of stormhost silver on the edges. The purple mohawks were genestealer purple, druchi violet, then genestealer purple again, as a highlight. Any face paint was simply pallid witch flesh flowed by some blood for the blood god, made to look like a streaked hand print.

IMG_0096.JPGEverything non-flesh oriented received a primer coat using Rynox Hide spray. While a full write-up of my metal process is coming, I will discuss quickly here. For my orks, I use rynox hide as a base. My goal is to get a really cruddy looking metal, so I think my leadbelcher a little more than normal for my basecoats and I DON’T get a solid coat of it, purposefully. This allows some of that rynox hide to poke through in areas. Then, I use both Agrax eathshade and nuln oil to really make it scummy looking. Then I go straight to stormhost silver only hitting where the light would cause an extreme shine, leaving the rest dingy from the wash. IMG_0090.JPGWheels and pants on all the orks were done the same. I used Dark reaper as a base, washing with nuln oil, then doing a light highlight of dark reaper once more. Skulls and teeth were zandri dust, agrax earthshade and ushabti bone. Yellows were Averland sunset, agrax earthshade, averland sunset again, then Yriel yellow. Leather cuffs and straps were Doombull brown, druchi violet, then mournfang brown. On the bikes, I used palid witch flesh and then waywatcher green glaze over top.IMG_0093.JPGThe red on all models started with a solid base of mephiston Red. Agrax earthshade was used as a shade, with mephiston red going back over as the first highlight. Evil sunz scarlet was lightly used as a highlight. The only deviation here was on any eyes. I used a faint extreme highlight of pallid witch flesh on those. Leadbelcher was used, with a piece of sponge, to create all of the chipped weathering, while sylvaneth dark was used as the dust effect.IMG_0037.jpgThe skin on the warboss was slightly different than the rest, to make him look darker. Yellow ink, agrax earshshade, nuln oil, coeliac greenshade, athonian camoshade, and finally biel tan green made up his skin. The burnt metal on his barrels was added after my usual metal process, by doing some overlapping drybrushing. Brass scorpion, genestealer purple, and macragge blue were the three main colors. I worked them back and forth until reaching a gradient I liked, also lightly adding druchi violet and drakenhof nightshade at edges, between stages to try and assist in the fading.

That is everything! While they may have been wiped from the table on turn four, they DID manage to pull in Best Painted, at the escalation event, which is better than a gaming win for me.

Part 5 will start breaking down the next 250 points. Managed to take a peek in the Mek’s Garage and it looked like some battlewagon parts were being slung around… more to come on that, soon. As always, thanks for reading and feel free to drop any comments or questions if I missed anything.