Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Off Painting

It's time for me to take some time away from the rigors of blogging....

....and have a little fun painting and puttering around in my garden while the weather is so good.

When will I be back you ask? At least two weeks, but maybe three as I've got 13 figures on the painting table right now. I'll pop in to check on the outcomes of the give away's as it's a bit like Christmas around here and I don't want to miss out on the fun.

There's no need to comment as I won't be in today.

Have a good couple of weeks everyone. I know I will.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Wargames and Railroads Give Away

Kris from Wargames and Railroads is having a birthday this week and he's celebrating it Hobbit style by giving gifts instead of receiving them.

There are some fantastic prizes up for grabs and very generous they are indeed. Twelve items in total and you may put your name in for any or all of them. He is not giving multiple draws for multiple comments. I think he fears what I might do as there are two wonderful prizes from Dark Sword Miniatures.

Visit Kris and put your name in for some fabulous prizes by following this LINK

Monday, May 20, 2013

Painting Seriously

When I set out to do something, I endeavor to do it to the best of my abilities. There is no happiness, or satisfaction to be found for me in complacency. It goes against my nature and it is something I will make no attempt to change.  The people in my real life are not surprised then to see me working so hard to improve as a painter.

Because I do not game, there are many conversations that I cannot participate in. And sadly, the painters in the Fantasy genre are not a friendly lot.  They are competitive and they do not share the same level of camaraderie that the painters in the historical genre do.  .I visit many forums and have observed this in some detail over a period of months.

In order to improve as a painter, I must have my work critically analyzed. Thankfully I have a friend who is eminently qualified and who is willing to take his time to help me develop as a painter.  Kris has been there for me from the beginning. He gave me my first set of paints and held my hand via email as I took my first tentative steps as a painter.

He is still there for me today. Telling me what I've done right, and more importantly telling me what I can do better. For example here is a short excerpt from one of his critiques (I have his okay to post this).

So now here are the things you can work on. It looks like you are still tending to drybrush your highlights so its time to work on your blending skills a bit. Some of your transitions are still a bit abrupt and the drybrushing tends to leave behind granular dried paint which we need to smooth out. There are a number of  different methods to do this. 

And then he goes on to tell me where I can find tutorials to learn the techniques I need.

Yes, I may act a wee bit silly here on blogger at times, but I take my painting seriously and hopefully, with a little help from my friend, I will continue to improve over time.

Now with all that said, I have one more post in me and then I will be taking a hiatus from blogger in order to focus on painting. 

Well folks, it's Monday and the start of a new week and the flowers are in full bloom.  So take a little time to notice the natural world around you and be inspired by it. I know I will.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

An Ode to Tamisin

The lovely Tamisin from Wargaming Girl is doing a Give Away on her blog to celebrate 100K page views. Her event is spread out over a six day period and her generosity is astounding. So to celebrate her kindness, I have written a verse to honour her.

A Maiden Bold and Fair

With eyes both bewitching
yet soft and with pleading
the Maiden Tamisin

Oh the lads they did gather
to chitter and chatter
in such a fine manner
with hopes of 
her favour
to gain.

With a toss of her hair
she offered a dare
and with a
 fine glare
she did 

"None shall pass my chambers door
till battle proves you worthy!"

With a twitch of her hips
and a smile on her lips
she left them

Thinking they knew what
soon would come due
they readied their
lances and

But upon the suns rise
they found a surprise
for no field for a
joust did they

Their eyes they flew wide
at the sight they beheld
for on a steed
great sat

And behind her arrayed
an army most brave
and to the
last man

Her Swiss came about
and gave a great shout
"Our lives we would
give for

You will find the link for Day 4 of her give away HERE

Friday, May 17, 2013

Tamisin's Epic Give Away-Day 3

She's at it again, our own Tamisin, the Wargaming Girl is giving away another fantastic prize in the third day of her 100K Give Away.

Today she's giving away something so good that the competition for it will be fierce. "What could it be?" you say.  They say a picture is worth a thousand words so here goes.....

I know, you want it. Well so do I and I got there first. And good luck trying to out comment me on this one!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

She's Giving It Away Folks!!

News of  Wargaming Girl Tamisin's Give Away is circling the blog-o-sphere and the excitement is mounting to epic proportions.

It is now day two of this extravaganza and on the table today are two amazing prices.

 A) £21 of metal (of your choice) from Ground Zero Games. Rather than offering a specific item (or set of items), the lucky winner can simply email me a list of what products they want and I will order them for delivery to their door.
Now, £21 might not seem much but it will buy an Intro Fleet plus an extra ship or two or enough 15mm figures for a reinforced infantry platoon.

B) a £25 gift voucher for Baccus 6mm (this may be an electronic voucher rather than physical).

Just follow the link and follow the directions to enter.  LINK

You can still get in on yesterdays prize drawing by following this LINK

Run, don't walk as the competition for these goodies is fierce.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Tom Meier/Thunderbolt Mountain WIP #1

For myself and for many people who paint fantasy figures, the name Tom Meier is spoken in tones reverent. As one of the founding sculptors of Ral Partha, his figures loom large in the childhood memories of many a gamer and the impact he has made on the industry will endure beyond his lifetime.  It has taken me over a year of painting to find the courage to lay brush to some of his lovely sculpts.

I am currently working on a series of vignettes using sculpts from Thunderbolt Mountain.  My approach will be that of myself as a little girl who read fairy tales and dreamed magical dreams. The dreams of a child sitting outside in the woods playing make believe by herself. I will be scratch building my own fantasy terrain.

This is a beautiful sculpt of a classic Goblin. The face is highly detailed and the musculature is exquisite. I have laid down a base coat of Reaper Meadow Green and applied a light wash of Reaper Face Wash mixed with a small amount of Secret Weapon Black wash. I will slowly build up the layers to add depth of colour and to bring the musculature into sharp relief.

These are Ballerina Princess Fairies that Mr. Meier sculpted for his daughter Nora. I have laid down base colours and just begun to do a little highlighting.

I have only laid down base colours on these three.

The contrast between these two figures is striking. The Goblin is large, bulky and fierce, while the Ballerina Princess Fairy is delicate and seemingly fragile.

These figures are much smaller than what I am used to working with and will be quite a challenge to me.

This is a picture to give scale. Look at the detail in that face. Those down turned lips and those pudgy cheeks tell me that this figure is the Ring Leader and not to be messed with.

I have two other major projects that will be presented as WIPs and I will be posting one of them tomorrow.

One last thing. Don't forget this number-257,599. Why you ask? I will only reveal this much right now. There's a wager going on, and I intend to win it.  More details on that next week.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

O'Leary Cowgirl Anne

I am the tomboy of the family. Now there's a reason for this, so let me give a bit of insight. My sisters are really only my half-sisters. We share a mother, but not a father, so really they are not O'Leary's, only I am. My mother married my step-father 4 years after I was born.

I do not know who my Daddy is and in County Cork, that meant I was full of sin and something to be ashamed of. The girls were not permitted to play with me and the only people brave enough to befriend me were the rough village boys. So I spent my younger years getting up to a whole lot of no good.

As you might expect, the nuns at school couldn't stand the sight of me, so I naturally felt the need to pay them back for their harsh treatment.  One of my first pranks was to get the boys to help me turn a piglet loose in the library. Well, we had no idea how much damage a scared piglet could do in one night, but it was pretty bad. We'd have been caught except we had the good sense not to use one of our own piglets, but to steal one instead.

Another time, I stole every eraser in the school, put them in a sack and tied firecrackers to the sack with string. What did I do with that you ask? I lit those firecrackers and threw the bag onto the lawn of the school chapel just as the nuns first services were beginning.. They suspected it was me, but couldn't prove it.

I was just as glad to see the backside of that school as they were to see me go. In typical O'Leary fashion, I went out in a blaze of glory. Me and the boys stole a fishing boat and hauled it onto the front lawn of the school. We spray painted our names on it, doused it in gasoline and then lit it on fire. It was grand I tell you.

This was me at 17 and I think I look a bit like the figure I chose. Also, a bit of the mischief maker I was is apparent in my face.

Despite my troubled beginnings I did manage to grow up and earn a Ph.D. in Neuroscience. Not too bad for a hellion of a child from County Cork.

Now that's it for the O'Leary Cowgirl series. I hope you enjoyed it.

Monday, May 13, 2013

O'Leary Cowgirl Niamh

Niamh, the baby of the family, is the posh sister and the one who has the worst temper.

The hardest part of dating this child was that she had a strict set of "rules of behavior" for a boy, but she'd never tell any of them exactly what those rules were. And those rules were subject to change without notice.

Boys would try desperately to please her and fail miserably. This one poor lad, who was as sweet as he could be, arrived 15 minutes early for a date one night. He was thinking like a sane person that arriving a bit early would show her respect and would please her. He was wrong.

Although she was dressed and ready to go, she stormed down the stairs when he arrived and proceeded to yell at him. "If I had wanted you here at quarter of eight, I would have said quarter of eight. Now get out and don't come back till eight."  The boy did just as she asked, but she didn't go out with him a second time.

None of the rest of us are quite certain if Niamh has a soul, but we don't worry too much about where she'll wind up in the afterlife. She's too mean for the devil, so God will have to take her.

This is a 25mm sculpt from Reaper Miniatures and was created by the hands of Bob Ridolfi.

Tomorrow my figure is up and right now I'm trying to decide what I don't want to tell you about myself.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

O'Leary Cowgirl Leilon

Leilon is the nicest of the lot of us. She rarely shows a temper and seems to be perpetually happy.

While having a higher than average IQ, Leilon will admit to being a bit ditzy.  "I've lost my sunglasses. Has anyone seen them?" she'll ask as she hunts around the house. The rest of us are trying not to laugh, because her sunglasses on on the top of her head. And when we point it out she just says "Ooops" and giggles.

Leilon is oblivious to the attention of males. She has no idea that they find her attractive. She and her husband have a house on a lake. Now it's a big property and Leilon push mows the thing whilst wearing her bikini.

The first summer after they bought the place all the local boys started asking her husband if they could come fish the lake. Being a nice guy, he said yes. He had no idea that Leilon was mowing in her bikini in the afternoons. None of those guys were there to fish, all of them were there hoping that Leilon would come out to mow. Well, word got back to him and now a giant sign with angry letters sits at the end of their lane and it says "No Fishing, No Hunting-DON'T ASK".  What did Leilon say? She said "Ooops" and then she giggled.

This is a 25mm figure from Reaper Miniatures and was sculpted by Bob Ridolfi.

Okay folks, it Wednesday and I'm knackered from staying up nights painting. I'll be in today, but will be away until next Monday. The weathers to be good and the painting table is crowded. Have a good one people.

Monday, May 6, 2013

200,000 Page Views!

Let me begin by saying Thank You to everyone who has tolerated me for so long. Without your patience and your time, I would not be writing this today.

To go with my new venture I commissioned a promotional video for O'Leary Miniatures with Patrick Hatt. Pat knows me pretty well and I gave him creative license to do as he pleased and I'm very happy with the results.

Yes, I do plan on opening an eBay store for O'Leary Miniatures, but that is a goal. In order to achieve that goal, there are steps that I must first take.  One of those steps involves making some changes to my blog.

My content will become more serious. You will be seeing product reviews, W.I.P.'s, and posts on painting technique and photography. I am currently having my work critiqued by Kris Marquardt  who serves as a judge at the ReaperCon painting contests. I will be sharing the depth of those critiques on this blog.

In conjunction with Kris, I will be doing a detailed step-by-step tutorial on "How to Paint a Babe" and will post that here as well.

Further, it is time for me to create vignettes. Currently I am working on the Billiards Vignette from Knuckleduster and I will be scratch building an interior for that.  Following that, I have a wee bit of a challenge with some figures from Thunderbolt Mountain.

I will be making a vignette using Tom Meiers Ballerina Princess Fairy Infantry and two of his Goblin Archers. This is going to be difficult and I may be hitting you guys up for some ideas.

I can't stress this last point too much. Patrick Hatt has been instrumental in getting me to this point. If you are interested in having a promotional video done, you may contact Pat at

Tell him Anne sent you and he just might cut you a deal.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Blood Bowl Give Away!!!!!

Seb over at Back to the Mini's is celebrating his blogs second birthday. As part of that celebration, he is having a week of give away, with something new each day.  Today it's some Blood Bowl figures.

There are several figures on offer and this is just one of them. So support your fellow gamer and get over there and wish Seb a Happy Birthday.

Glitches with Blogger

Well it's that time of year again folks. It seems as if the people at Blogger noticed that all was running smoothly and just couldn't stand it.

Lord Google himself

In an effort to make our blogging experience more comfortable, they've gone and mucked things up.  A lot of people are complaining about glitches and I wanted to let you know about my most current issue.

Since last Thursday, many blogs are not updating on my blog roll for as many as 6 to 9 hours after they have posted.  This is causing me to miss some blogs and to show up unfashionably late on others. I know other people are experiencing the same problem and I guess we'll just have to grit out teeth and bare it.

This is not so much a post as it is a Public Service Announcement, so you don't need to comment if you're busy. But if you feel the need to vent, please feel free to do so.

I'm sleeping right now as I've stayed up late putting base coats on some of my Knuckleduster figures. I'll be in later today to comment.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

I Have a Cunning Plan

Is it as cunning as a fox who's just been appointed Professor of Cunning at Oxford University?  Well, perhaps not that cunning, but it's a plan.

The best of the series, don't argue with me.

This is an expensive hobby and up until recently I vaguely thought that one day, I'd get around to flogging some of my stuff on e-bay to help fund it. And maybe on some magical day when we discover that there really are Unicorns, someone will ask me to paint some miniatures for them.  But the deeper I get into it, the more I want to buy and the more costly it becomes. It was time to have specific goals and then create plans to achieve them. But I had no idea where to begin.

Until I took an online course at Udemy, taught by Patrick Hatt that teaches the fine art of platforming oneself on social media. I took everything I learned there and applied it strictly to the gaming community.  I immediately realized that I would never be able to sell any figures if no one knows who I am. Further, if the only people who know who I am are talented painters then I am not reaching potential buyers.  And thus began my campaign to get my work "out there" where as many gamers as possible could see it.

I know some of you have seen me on a few gaming forums posting like a madwoman. I've been known to have two threads going on two or more forums at the same time.  I was not prepared for the response I got. Some of that response is evident in the number of pageviews I now have.  At the time of this writing, I had 217,000 pageviews. God only know how many there are now.  I have also gained 25 new followers, all of whom are gamers.

I was also completely unaware that sculptors hung out on those forums until I got PM's from two of them. Apparently I have some innate talent with painting and they've noticed that. One of them had gathered up all the links of the threads I'd done for the last two weeks and pasted them into a PM and said-"I noticed these and what you're doing is very clever"  Tom Meier himself even showed up and commented on two of my threads. Jaysus, I almost passed out. 

There's more going on than this at the moment though and we'll save that for Monday when I officially celebrate my 200,000 pageviews and formally launch O'Leary Miniatures.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

O'Leary Cowgirl Theresa

Theresa is the extrovert, the one on the go, the one who loves to talk and the one the boys always chased after.

The lads loved Theresa and she knew it. Even after she dumped a boy, the boy would come over to the house to watch telly with The Parents.

These gormless idiots would hang around the house for years hoping that she would give them a second chance. Theresa was such a nice girl though, that none of the boys got angry at her and they remain as friends to this day. The constant parade of boys throughout her young life was a source of amusement and aggravation for the rest of us.

This is a figure from Reaper Miniatures,  it is 25mm and was sculpted by Bob Ridolfi.

This is the first of the O'Leary Cowgirls based on myself and my little sisters, which were won by Monty in my Giveaway.

It's Wednesday folks and we're halfway through the week. The transmission has just gone out of my car, so it looks like I'm walking to the weekend. Hope you all have a ride. I know I don't.

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