Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Painted Squigs and Being Patient

I've made some progress on painting some of those new squigs that I recently purchased. I'm trying to get all 30 of the normal squigs done before moving onto the hoppers, but I ended up breaking them into 2 logical groups based on colour. The first group is here, and they're your more common red and orange sort of colour scheme. The second batch will be blue and purple. This gives me 2 relatively distinct units, but they should still look OK mixed together. In the past I've fallen into the trap of painting squigs in every colour under the rainbow, and they really are a mess. I'll have to go back and look at those later. I think a more restricted palette will be more effective.

Anyway, here is the first batch of squigs...

Aren't they handsome? The modern plastics really do hold some of the character of the older metal range. 

The second from the left has a dangly lantern in front of his face like an angler fish. It broke off as I was trying to put him into the light box for a photo. He really is fragile. Thankfully it's plastic, so relatively easily fixed. Until I lose the broken bit next time, anyway. 
A lot of the models are off the ground, using mushrooms to tie them to the base. It feels a little over-done to me, but does add a bit more variety to the height of the models when they're all squeezed in together. In a ranked up unit. Which is not how they're expected to be used anymore. Weird. Anyway...
I did as little as I could to the mushrooms. They all got the same basecoat and wash. Some then got a highlight. Others didn't. Really I didn't want them to be the focus of the model, so they were never going to get a lot of love. 
There's a lot of open mouths with tongues and all in behind. Not the easiest thing to paint once fully assembled, but do look better than the mouth being a solid wall with teeth drawn on the front.  
I've put a few multi-based models together, to give me the chance to mess their neat formation up a bit. Make them more of a mob. There are 2 like this in the blue and purple half. 
With some of these guys you can basically have them going over one another. Looks dynamic. Not the best to squeeze a paintbrush into. Well, it's self-inflicted.

A quick note below on being patient with my own painting. So really this is a note for me, but others might fall into a similar trap. 

I don't think of myself as a particularly fancy painted. My goal is a nice table-top standard. For someone who paints whole armies like I do, and has such an enormous backlog of models awaiting paint, anything more than that feels like overkill. I don't really enjoy slaving for many hours over a single model. I want results.

So it is that I'm nearly always frustrated with how slowly I seem to paint. Everything always takes longer than I want it to. It's a continual source of annoyance. Sometimes it helps to have a little perspective, though. The models in this post were painted using the paints you can see below. All of these paints were used somewhere on the 14 squigs above. I think of them as being red, orange, teeth, eyes and base. In my head, that sounds like about 10-12 paints. Not 25... 

When I stop and think about it, this is really not that unusual for me. So yeah, it takes more time than I want to believe it will. Maybe one day I'll come to terms with it and adjust my expectations. In the meantime, so long as things are getting painted I can just work on being patient with myself.


  1. Lovely paint job. Those new squig models look grand too - tempted to grab a few for myself.

    1. They feel like "proper" squigs. I really do like them. If anything, the hoppers are even better!

  2. They look great. I have the same painting/patience issues. I think I'll do a nice quick tabletop job and it takes forever and involves far more paints than I would think. But the results you've achieved are excellent, so it looks like it was worth your time and effort! I hope you feel that way!

    1. I'm generally satisfied with the end result, and for me it's always about having the painted stuff arrayed on the field rather than lavishing attention on a particular model and wanting to get it just right. Once it's ready to be used, there is always a level of satisfaction. Just wish I was a bit faster sometimes.

  3. That really helps as a reframe on the slow painting. My wife and I went all in on those new Contrast paints, and I figured I'd knock out my whole Nighthaunt army in a few weeks. Which was. Months ago. And I never so much as finished a unit. I'd get bogged down in putting some silver on the weapons of model after model, look at the pile that didn't have the metal on them, and give up.

    I think another trick I'm going to try is to fully finish one model before the batch painting, so I have something that shows the end result that I'm striving towards. I'm constantly convincing myself that the batch method is faster and makes sense to basecoat everyone's limbs at the same time, but the results have not proven that out.

    The squigs look great, and the multi-based one in particular reminds me of the converting fun I do miss from 8th.

    1. I think batch painting is definitely faster, but it gets too soul-destroying if the batches are too large. Depending on the models I might start off intending to paint a unit of 20, start on all of them, then stop half of them and focus on the other half right to completion. Then I have something to show for my efforts and I can go back to the other half, knowing they're started and I've already painted that many in the previous lot.

      As for finishing a single model, I would normally do this (or a very small batch) as a prototype if I'm still working out what scheme I'm going to use on them.

      I've seen a lot about contrast paints and everyone talking about how great they are, but I'm generally painting stuff to match a style I've already used, so if the contrast paints won't give the right finish, there's not much point. Much like the cheap airbrush I've never unpacked, it remains a tool that allegedly speeds up the process that I have thus far failed to embrace.

    2. I never paint in batches of more than ten, and even then only rarely. I usually do batches of five to six; anything more gets too soul destroying. Especially on something which has a very uniform paint job like your squigs. Even my current 40K Ork scheme can get a bit tedious because they all have the same colours on them, just not always in the same spot. There's no way I could paint an army with a uniform scheme and every figure identical.

  4. I feel exactly the same when painting, I paint something to what I consider tabletop quality, but it takes forever, when looking back though I realize I've used a lot of paints & everything is both shaded as well as highlighted.

  5. Replies
    1. Let's not get too excited... There are many forms of resurrection. Ask any necromancer!