23 September 2009

How to Stay Motivated

I am fortunate to have a steady job given many recent circumstances and events, and though I am appreciative of the steady paycheck and the means within which I am able to live, I have often found myself at home after the work day is over, thoroughly and completely non-eager to work at my painting, terrain builds, or other aspects of the hobby.

This can be frustrating on many levels, but perhaps the most keenly frustrating bit is the fact that I sometimes look at my bench and say to myself, "You need to get some work in on X, Y, Z, ... "

Perhaps this is the key to those stretches of time in which the hobby gets shoved aside.  The terminology used there: "You need to get some work in..."  This seems completely at odds with the reasons which enamored me to this pastime and can be a large obstacle towards my enjoyment thereof.

I remember that when I was in grade 7, or 8, when I first picked up 2nd Ed. Warhammer 40,000.  I was so totally and completely infatuated with the miniatures, the stories, the amazing photos of painted armies, and the sheer possibility presented to me with this new toy.  I say toy because that is how it was perceived by 12-13-year old me, but I soon realized that there was much more to this game than toy soldiers and dice.

I started painting and I loved it.  I think I must have spent whole weeks' worth of time crafting my incredibly cool and entirely non-competitive Ultramarine army, and soon my two best friends joined in with me, each of them grabbing hold of a Space Marine army (Blood Angels and counts-as Dark Angels), and we went to town.  Games lasted hours and frequently never got finished, mostly due to the fact that we only played once a month and because we had a Nintendo 64 sitting nearby singing its siren song...

At any rate, this bit of nostalgia is likely leaving some of you folks screaming "Pack it in, M.W.!!" so I'll address my main point now: things have changed and perhaps the most relevant of these changes is the fact that I can now afford most of the cool minis I want and have the time to paint them and play, but it has become more difficult to let go of all the responsibilities and worries that come with maturity (societal, physical, mental, etc.) and just give myself time to do my own thing and enjoy this admittedly silly little hobby.

Over the last two or three weeks, I've had to make some changes in my lifestyle and surroundings, as well as taking on a fairly-mundane-yet-occasionally-intensely-challenging project at work, and between an occasional sense of moderate depression and the daily feeling of "I'm finally done with work and now I will drink a beer and do nothing for a while," I've found my workbench becoming neglected.  I've got three hired guns and the NMI sitting on the desk, awaiting some simple painting work - not kitbashing, not cleaning, not sculpting but just plain old painting - and they've sat there mostly untouched for a week and a half.  What exactly is so terrible about this simple, formerly enjoyable task, you might wonder?  I cannot honestly tell you the reason I've been ignoring these items on my to-do list but I can guess that it stems from a problem with my approach towards the hobby of late.  The need to "Get Something Done" is overwhelming the idea of fun in my hobby and all it will take for me to get stuck in again is to simply look forward to the opportunity to paint rather than the responsibility of painting.

That said, I want to see if things will change once I take a new look at the bench, and hopefully that will mean some interesting new minis done up properly and some photos as proof of my triumph (such as it may be).  I do get a lot out of this little hobby of mine and I want that sense of accomplishment and achievement to be a more constant emotion.

Okay, that'll about do it for me tonight.  Thanks for the patience (I just need to start finishing each post with that from now on, eh?) and I'll be back soon.


21 September 2009

Still Reading? Good.

First, my apologies for the lack of posts, I've been dealing with a bit of personal stuff and it's been a bit of a drain on my time and my efforts in the hobby.  Among these things is a rearranging of my work spaces, and to my immense frustration, yet more modification of furniture is required.  Grrrrr.

However, it's not all bad.  I'm set up much more favorably in this new arrangment - the painting desk is set up between two windowfuls of gorgeous natural light, and even with the inevitable battles for desk space I will be having with the cat, I am looking forward to getting some work done.

With regards to the gaming group, we've lost Matt - just a sort of "not my thing" situation for him.  It's too bad that the game's not for him but I can't fault him for giving it a good couple of tries.  Our next meetup is looking to be the 4th of October, and I'm going to try to get a game in with one or two of the members between now and then.  We've decided to go with once a month for a big meetup and we all try to get in a game or two in between with a random opponent.  It's hopefully easier for everyone to fit this into their schedules and plan around it, rather than try to fit the meetup in between other stuff.

10 September 2009

Limited Labor Day WIPs

I've gotten enough of a handle on the techy bollocks of late to get som epics posted.  These have gone up at Eastern Fringe already, but I hope you enjoy them all the same.

First is the mysterious Bounty Hunter known only as Mister Todd.
His backpack is MIA but I know I will find it very soon and have him finished within a week, I hope.  This is one of my absolute favorite minatures from the Necromunda line, a bit goofy but very characterful and oozing detail.  I tried for a German style camo on the trousers which I am happy with and seems to work pretty well so far.  Inspiration for his name may become apparent if one is familiar with recent adaptions of Sondheim.

Next is a former member of the Necromundan PDF, assigned to extended duty at the edge of the Ash Wastes.  This is one SSGT Leon.
Leon is originally a 3rd Edition Stormtrooper.  These guys were great with their heavy armour and just sort of nonchalant body language.  It was sad to see so little attention given to them, as they only seemed to have a handful of poses across the whole line.  Admittedly this is an improvement on the plastic Stormtroopers that preceded them, but still a bit of a downer.  At any rate I painted him up to look like he's got a heavy duty bodysuit to protect against corrosive ash storms, over which is his tactical protective gear.  Assorted equipment is done up in a tactical gray.  Expect a bit of chipping and weathering on his gear, still to come.

Okay, that's all for now, but I did some work on loot tokens and some of the old 3rd edition plastic building ruins terrain, so I'll edit up and post some pics of that once I get Photoshop transferred to this new computer.

Cheers, all!

09 September 2009

Technical Difficulties are Overcome

Hey again.

My old reliable black PC tower is ailing quite a whole lot and in light of what I assume to be rapid-onset cooling problems, has developed a nasty buzzing from the inner workings that no amount of cleaning or basic maintenance has been able to sort out.

So I did a bit of work and research, and found myself a new laptop format.  This marks the first blog post from that new platform, and also an apology that the timing of this snafu meant a distinct lack of photos from this weekend.  I did take some pics though, and they will be cleaned up and posted soon.

Meantime I am excited about the computer.  I've been sort of a neo-Luddite about laptops, and I finally broke down.  Hopefully it will be worth it, but when Windows 7 drops that will be a huge help.

So here it is, thanks for your patience and I'll pay up eventually.

03 September 2009

Quick Note

Look! a splash picture at the top of the blog!

I've been meaning to do that for a while, and although it's not exactly how I want it to look, there's at least a placeholder up there adding a bit of color to the darkness of Sector N-UH-855.

I took a bunch of pics tonight but I rushed them and the light in this room is bad for minis and terrain so I am vetoing them all until I can get some better shots.  Thankfully someone decided that celebrating workers in the US should happen this weekend so there will be plenty of nice light to shoot in.

That's all, cheers!

02 September 2009

Stalled out, OH NOEZ.

Well, a bit of news, some good some bad.  Firstly the bad:  the next meet will be a bit later than expected.  Our "every other Sunday" schedule dropped this meetup on Labor Day weekend and as many of our members already have plans, we had to reschedule.  The next weekend is no good and so the campaign will continue on the 20th.

EDIT: ARGH, there is yet another speedbump as the 20th is committed on my part and Jeff's.  I have no clue when the campaign will continue.  This is getting frustrating.

Good news is I can probably get a lot of stuff done in the meantime!  I've still got a lot of WIP terrain that needs finishing.  I've got a garage (and work/games tables) available to me now and can do spraying, sealing, etc. without being at the mercies of the weather.  It will also allow me to spend some time with the hired guns and mercs I've been waiting to finish, getting a bit of variety available for the new campaign.
    •  Gate/watchtower (1)
    • Ruins (2)
    • Tank cluster (1)
    • Big Green Tower (1)
    • Catwalks (3)
    • Bounty Hunter (1)
    • Ratskin Scout (1)
    • PDF Deserter (1)
    • Sniper Merc (1)
    • NMI bases (12)
    • Frank the Lictor (1)
    I've had some problems with managing my focus and time spent on projects before, so I'm going to try to keep my discipline up a bit more and provide steady WIP reports and photos.  Here's hoping I can hold myself to it.

    Cheers all, and I will look to post up some pics as early as Thursday night!

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