Friday, February 18, 2011

Why 48 orcs?

I had purchased a box of Mordor Orcs a few years ago, with the idea of using them in a Middle Earth RPG campaign. 24 came in the box. A few months ago, my brother picked up a ROTK box set in a thrift store for a few $ with Minas Tirith soldiers and more Mordor Orcs. He doesn't paint, so he left the box with me, and there it sat, taunting me. My original Mordor troops were assembled but not based and had sat gathering dust all this time.

So rather than trying to get EVERYTHING ready to paint (I have oodles of primed and unpainted minis as is), I thought 4 dozen matching orcs was a nice, distinct, chunk of painting. So, since the forecast said the 18th (today) was to be a nice warm day (for a change), I spent the last couple evenings scraping flash lines and super-gluing the orcs from the new box. As of slightly after 11PM Thursday (2/17), I had 48 orcs cleaned, assembled and based with PVA-glued gravel.

Today (Friday) was sunny and nearly 70º F here in the DC area as promised, so they whole lot got spray primed and are shovel-ready (not an entirely fair analogy for my painting skills).

Now that the color scheme is more or less set, I'm hoping to get through them a little faster. I changed the leather, the hair, and the cloth colors multiple times on archer #1 before being content with the look.

Why 28 days?
4 weeks seemed long enough to be possible, but short enough to make me push myself to stay on target. It allows for very little procrastination, but I shouldn't need to pull all-nighters to make my goal. Like I mentioned previously, these are for tabletop, not display. I want them presentable, but not slapdash. My normal tabletop mini for something like a PC takes me about 1-2 hours. My usual orc monster might only take 45 minutes. If I can cut that down to 30 minutes per orc, doing 3-4 each time, I'll be able to make my goal with 2 hours of painting per night, 3 times a week.

The main wild card is the weather. I went ahead and spray-varnished the first one with a layer of gloss followed (when dry) with a layer of matte, but I won't be able to do that for the other if I don't have some 60ºF+ days. I'm giving myself a pass on varnishing. It may be a week or two after the deadline before all of them are sealed.

Hm. Maybe I'd better paint that bridge when I get to it.

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