Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Alfonso "Banshee" Girades Workshop Review

The weekend is over... I am back at home.. exhausted, motivated, confused, excited, and a whole bunch of other emotions that I can not put into words at the moment...

The class, set at The Scythe and Teacup in Liverpool, was hosted by The Weekend Workshop man himself John Harrison. And his guest teacher this time around was Alfonso "Banshee" Giraldes.

I am not going to lie here.. I had not really heard or seen much of Banshee's work prior to this workshop. I mean, I have seen his works, and knew that some of his pieces were amazing! Such as his Hulk piece from Knight models... the light sources on it are amazing... but I had not really heard much about him until my last class with Rafaelle "Volomir" Garcia. It was heavily suggested that I move heaven and earth to go to this workshop... thankfully that wasn't required as the timing worked out well enough.

I do have to say that I really need to invest some of my time to look at the masters of painting, and review their work more. So that I do not get into a position that I don't know such a great painters work when I meet them! So embarrassing!

For the class, it was to focus on painting of skin tones. Originally we were going to paint up a 28mm warrior model. However Banshee had just sculpted a smaller bust that was available to all to purchase. In the end.. it was this bust that we all focused on as it was a perfect subject for the topic that we would all focus on.

But with all classes.. we need to learn some Theory on how the teacher works. This would be where the mind fuzziness and craziness begins...

His theory is so deep that even John was like.. huh? I mean, it is simple, and basic, but deep.

He got us to start with making color wheels and to understand if we knew what color theory was.

From here we began to talk about the temperature of the colors.. what is hot... what is cold... and how to achieve them...

Once more... this is where it felt like our brains were melting!

So Banshee goes into full on artist teacher mode... and does something none of us were expecting...

Taking a massive sheet of paper, and our paints.. and a large brush.. he goes to town showing us how to achieve, find, and play with colors for temperatures...

You can at this point begin to see a few of us have a glimmer of understanding of the theory that Banshee is laying down.

Still not everyone caught on to it.. there were some like myself that were still struggling to get our minds wrapped around the temperature tones of the colors.

So Banshee adapts to our class and comes up with a great little exercise to show us how to bring the tones of colors to the same level, so that the ability to see the warm/cold in a color easier.

Of course this was after we all tried to do it ourselves. I can say that this was a major click moment for me to understand the colors better, and know how to play around with it better.

And from here we had the chance to see the master painter in action as he showed us how to mix the colors to make the skin tones.

Again, very similar to the work I did while learning from Rafa back in Cambridge. Taking the primaries, and black/white to shift and play with the colors getting what we need when we need it.

He even showed us some steps with regards to prepping the model for light and dark sources.

And then the application of colors.. and to be honest.. how fast he was able to apply paint and blend it. I have seen fast with Roman and Ben, but this was next level stuff!

And from here we were then given the go ahead to begin putting paint to model at the end of day one.

I can honestly say that it is the first workshop that I have gone to that we spend so much time with theory and demos and so little on painting. I could not have said before this workshop that this would be a process that I could see ever really working...

However all of the theory was able to sink in over night ( and the jagermeister might have helped ) to hit the bust with a vengeance the next day. And a lot of the theory really came into play here.

But before we dove into the models too much it was feed, drinks and great chats with everyone in the center of Liverpool.

On wards to day 2... after a great sleep at Kev's place ( Thanks again for that! ) we were all off to The Scythe and Teacup for continuing our journey with the bust and skin tones.

Here we began to sketch out the colors further.. looking to play with the tones, and feelings on the models. Banshee pre-choose for us what temp we would do, so that it was spread out among the class. For me it was to be cold.. but you cannot just jump into the coldness without making it have some life in it.

The above photo ( which I dunno how my camera made this stock photo ) shows where my piece was at the beginning of the day, and at a portion a little while afterwards.

Biggest comments I got from Banshee at this time was that I was painting too safe. A comment I get A LOT from classes that I join ( especially from all the Spainish painters.. go figure! ).

Though he did say that it was looking good.. but he was going to go and "wreck" it for me now. Push me out of my comfort zone... and just threw blue ink directly onto the shadow areas of the model. Puddle marks, etc.. who cares.. now I can see the extreme.. go play.. and he walks off to "help" another painter ...

I can only say that I was frustrated to see that.. but also I was able to smooth it out, and make it work while seeing what he was pushing. Another click moment for me....

Even while getting beat up by Banshee with the theory, the style, the type of paining... you can see many happy painters in the class..

Banshee continued to throw us new techniques as we progressed further with the busts. He also was able to make a lot of us ( well those who stayed... right Gus? ) move out of our comfort zone and really make some good progress on our pieces!

Though the photos end at this point cause of the pressure to put more to the bust, and also the pure exhaustion of the information that is being put to us... I can say from the final group photo of smiling students that everyone had a good time, and many are looking forward to another class full of information!

From what I know.. Banshee has another class at the end of August in Cambridge this time. Already fully sold out! And that if your there, you will probably see a few familiar faces... heck.. I just might be one of them ;)

Thanks again goes out to John for organizing this... Banshee for taking the time to teach us.. and everyone in the class for making the class what it was.. brilliant!

Until the next workshop... which is this weekend.. ekkk.. no rest for the wicked it seems! Enjoy!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Roadtrip! Back to Liverpool!

Must be a weekend coming up, as there is another painting related event happening!

This time it is up in Liverpool for a The Weekend Workshop event hosted by John "Darkmessiah" Harrison. His guest painter this weekend is none other than Alfonso "Banshee" Giraldes.

Not quite sure what to expect, but I do know that he has taught a lot of the other big names in the community before, and has a few surprises for us in the workshop! Focus will be on skintones, etc, but I am sure there will be other techniques tossed in for good measure.

Lucky for me this time I will have a travelling buddy for the roadtrip instead of doing the 4-6 hr trip ( traffic dependent ). So expect lots of photos along the way with this in mind! As I will actually get a chance to see the countryside if I am not doing all the driving!!!

Also today kicks off the beginning of my summer holidays! Great way to start is with a workshop in UK.. and to then fly over to Germany to do, yet another, workshop with Massive Voodoo in Augsburg! This time with Roman at the lead showing off his skills as a master base builder! Am very curious on the course outline compared to what Matt presented in Berlin back in January earlier this year.

Plus just hanging out with Massive Voodoo crew for a week is always an adventure in and unto itself!

Enjoy the weekend, and look out for the review to land early next week!!!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Incoming!!! More Artillery Reinforcements!

Pew pew goes this new reinforcements to my IJAs. What luck that WCP comes through and sends me my 20mm Anti-Tank gun which arrived on Saturday! And I just had to paint it up ASAP! not because I need it now, but just because why the heck not!!!!

Easy little group, also thrown onto the 60mm base. Mostly because of the fact that the barrel on this gun is very thin, and easy to bend/break ( am guessing on the breakage, but better to be safe than sorry! ). 

Quite a weird little kit though. The gunner has a seat attached to the gun. It is supposed to be modelled for Anti-Air more than Anti-tank.. so I guess that seat peg would be on the ground rather than flying in the air here! But it is connected to the main gun frame via a metal rod. So I guess he could be moving up like a seesaw on it! Right? 

As you can see, again I just threw them all onto the base, and flocked/sanded it immediately with them all there. 

Finding it to be a lot easier on these guys to do this. Hides the metal plate they are standing on as well, and makes them look well trenched in also. 

And with the airbrush, it is quite quick to just spray them up and get the base layers done. 

Here they are before I begin to just throw paint and washes on them. Base is hit with several varieties of Modelmates mud/sand wet pigments here. This was actually dry, yet the pigments give off a nice gloss/wet finish in places! 

Finished boys and their AT Gun... 

I do feel like I am going a bit quickly with these guys, and probably not giving them the best workover that they deserve. But then again, the sculpts are not the best. The casting is quite terrible. And the unit is one that I fear will only show up once in a blue moon. So not too sure how much play they will get.. and seeing how fast artillery gets targetted in games.. I doubt they will survive long anyways!

So with that in mind.. these guys are great! Hopefully they can stick around a bit, and see how well they sit with the rest of the army ( to which I need to take an army photos of at some point! ). 

Enjoy hump day! More to come this week!!!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Figureworld Model Show in Oundle, UK

Yup another convention almost right outside my door ( and by right outside I mean a good 2.5 hr drive up the main carriage way! ). But it was a good way to spend the Saturday with Junior in tow. And to have a looksie at some of the other aspects of the painting community that exists here in UK!

I say other aspects as there were a ton of models and styles that I was not accustomed to, or was unfamiliar to me. So to have the chance to check them out, and chat with the people as well was brilliant!

Kicking things off I did also get to run into a few others that I have been meaning to catch up with for a while.. one being Mat Hart.. co-founder of Guild Ball which just finished on Kickstarter, and is now gearing up for production runs of their models!

Great guy, who even supplied me with a few pre-production test pieces to review and provide feedback on! Expect a write up on them soon!

I also had the chance to finally meed up with Jay from Warpaint Studios. Was great catching up with him, and seeing some of his pieces in the flesh as well!

There were of course many others that I got to run into and chat with along the day.. people like Shane Rozzell ( Founder of Figure Painting Magazine ), Andrew Nai who I will meet once more this weekend in Liverpool, James from Infamy Miniatures where we talked about his kickstarter and what is yet to come for it! And although I got the chance to speak with many "famous" people around the hall, I also chatted up a few of the vendors! Many of whom I hope to chat with more in the ( not to distant ) future!

But I have to get to the point of the show.. the models! And although it was quite small ( much smaller than I thought it would be ) there was some top shelf pieces being shown here!

And at this point I had barely covered the first end of the table!

Jay's Ogre that he painted with the assistance/guidance of Adam Halon from Poland.

Starting to see some new models that I have not seen before or at least not been exposed to in the past! And I can also see that a lot of these guys put some serious time into their display stands!

Something for me to think about potentially in the future :)

Some very different styles appeared throughout the stands also. From Super blended pieces, to more Comic styled pieces.

This daemon bust was beyond words to me on how well it was painted up! And the sculpt is one that I will now need to search for and look to grab myself for a future painting session!

Some of the historical pieces that were rounding the other corner of the central table. Amazing pieces here as well.. really top shelf pieces here and quite the display to go alongside it!

This section was quite interesting for me though.. flat figures! I had seen some for sale at Duke, and a few entries in this category there, but nothing to this scale! Apparently there is quite the flat figure community here in UK and as can be seen fro the photos, there are quite a few showing up to events! Something to think about when heading to Euro Militaire later this year!

And finishing off the table sections ( or at least what I was able to snap photos of ) were a few more selections of people's work. Either solo or group pieces being shown off!

Somewhere in the middle of all this though, Junior was getting far too tired. So we went and grabbed him a nice "energy" food as he called it.. which consisted of a chocolate cupcake!

He did quite well throughout the day, and only a few times did I need to run over and save some models from his backpack! To say that I had a few mini-heart attacks during the day would be an understatement!

Of course there were the vendors. Many selling the same things or close to it at least. A unique one was Retro selling off Minions!

The last one was a bit expensive, until I realized that it had working lights! And all those pieces came with the model! Thankfully he will be at Scale Model Challenge later this year, so another chance to pick it up will occur then ;)

And of course with vendors come buying.. and Mr Lee here was not to be left undone! As stated, lots of the same stuff being sold in the show, but for me many of it was brand new or pieces that I would prefer to have now! Especially.. SOCKETS! Although I know a lot of socket providers in Germany ( Sockelmacher, Michael from 5th-dimension, and CrazyWenky ) I don't know any in UK! So I may have gone a bit overboard with some of them from this show...

Some unique pieces that were up for grabs. Some higher end bits available. Along with some other pieces from the show that included...

  • Crazy Peter in 54mm from Infamy ( review to come ) 
  • WW1 Scotsman ( practice my tartan patterns )
  • Wolverine Minion ( for fun! )
  • Cowgirl flat figure
  • Tinkerbell from Guild of Harmony ( maybe I can recreate another spectacle like Alice? )
  • Guild Ball pre-production test pieces.. not so much a purchase as it more for review and critique ( review to come soon! )
Junior also somehow got me to buy him legos at the first rest stop we hit.. before he passed out in the car for the remainder of the ride!

But that was our Saturday adventures! 260+ miles turnaround, plus the walking around the convention hall! A good way to spend a muggy Saturday.. and looking forward to the adventures to come over the weekends coming up! Many more adventures in the near future to come!
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