Blood Bowl : Current Team Painting and Modelling Projects

I was sorting through the Cave the other day doing a general tidy and reorganising some stuff when about half way through the process I decided that putting all of the outstanding Blood Bowl team projects in one place would be very useful. Makes sense right? Get all of the models, conversion bits and sprues needed for each project and put them in marked tubs or boxes. Makes perfect sense, especially to someone who loves organising as much as I do (it’s the thought and act of initially organising that I like, I’m not so good at keeping things organised).

The "Shelf"

The “Shelf”

So after all of that here’s what I have on my plate! That’s EXCLUDING the Chaos Dwarves that I am currently painting (more on them later) my Chaos Pact and the three, yes three, teams that should soon be with me from the Impact! Miniatures Kickstarter; for what it’s worth I got Khemri, Wood Elf and I don’t remember what other team (it’s been so long).

The High Elf and Nurgle teams are going to be my attempt to create teams by converting Warhammer Fantasy plastic miniatures. I’ve never done this sort of thing before so am expecting mixed results. I think the Nurgle team will end up looking the best. Although they are both team that I want to play on the tabletop, they are low down my lost of hobby priorities. This is mainly because I currently equate progress to painting and these won’t be ready for paint for a long while. A change of mindset is needed here.

Partially built High Elves

Partially built High Elves

In Progress Nurgle conversions

In Progress Nurgle conversions

The Goblins and Skaven are out of my love of 2nd edition miniatures. I had a few goblins and a few skaven but not enough to make full teams and had already purchased an Underworld team. I’ve added to the goblins with some 3rd edition models, which I am fine with as their variation looks good in contrast to the pretty boring 2nd edition poses. I still need to get some more skaven (and already have a painted 3rd ed team anyway). I’m thinking that I’ll use the same paint scheme for both teams so that I can combine them to another Underworld team should the mood take me in the future.

Goblins :)

Goblins 🙂

2nd Edition Humans have recently been stripped and will be my next painting project. I only did them a while ago but my painting have improved quite a bit since I finished them and I wanted to redo them as I will probably take them to the NAF Championships (NAFC) in May.

Humans. Next on the list.

Humans. Next on the list.

The Meiko skaven and Underworld only arrived in the post a few weeks ago so they’ll stay there for now. I was originally going to take Underworld to the NAFC but think the Humans will be more forgiving.

Dwarves are dwarves. I’ve got no real desire to play them (I will have to one day) but I do think that they will make an interesting painting project. There are a lot of them and there are a lot of different models in the collection.

Primed Dwarves

Primed Dwarves

Then there are the Undead and Necromantic teams to paint (oh and 2nd Ed Orcs). They are pretty much ready to go, except for a few pieces that I need to stick to a base and prime. Not sure when I’ll get round to these. I’ve not played with either of these teams and at the moment they don’t have any desire to play them. I don’t know why though.

Undead/Necro...and some Orcs

Undead/Necro…and some Orcs

So as you can see, I have got more than enough to be getting on with. Probably two or three years worth of painting project based on the last couple of years. I don’t need to buy anything for a couple of years either. Not full teams anyway. There are still a few Star Players and a couple of odds that I would like 😉

You may have noticed from the title of this post that it was about the teams that I have to work on. There’s a whole load of other things that I would like to work on…but that’s for another post 🙂



A few weeks ago, I decided to make a real effort to get better at painting my miniatures. I posted about how I’d found a painting tutorial series that I liked and how I was copying the technique step-by-step on my Warhammer Fantasy High Elves. I really enjoyed the process, didn’t find it time consuming or technical and above all was really pleased with the results.

Well I’ve not painted anything for a while for a variety of reasons but a couple of days ago I knuckled down and put paint to brush again as I started work on my Impact! Miniatures Valkyrie Blood Bowl team. The valkyries are a team of female fantasy football players that can be used as either Norse or Amazon on the pitch. I need to paint about 18 miniatures in total to be able to get both teams ready for the pitch.

Blue and white are traditional Norse team colours and with a few embellishments would work well as a well dressed Amazon team. A quick image search online confirmed that these miniatures had been done in these colours by many others and they looked good, so I picked a few images to use as a guide. The other benefit of this scheme is that I could use the same step-by-step process that I’d learnt and used on for my High Elves.

I’ve spent a few hours applying the base coat to 4 of the players and 1 of the model that I will use as my snow troll / yeti. The first thing that I have noticed is how well I think they are turning out! I had always thought that my painting was limited by my eyesight, by brush control and patience; physical/mental limitations. It turns out though that a large part of my poor painting is colour selection and knowing how to build up from base coat to the final colour.

Using the same tutorial on an inferior model is still giving me good results. I can paint to a pretty good level, I just don’t know how to paint. Now this may seem obvious to most, especially now I have pointed it out, but it is a little bit of a revelation to me. I can paint. It’s odd because I’d always though that the more I painted the better I would get. This is partially true and looking back at the teams that I have done recently I can see progress, but the end results are generally the same. The High Elves are a significant step above anything that I have done before. Too great a step up to be associated with brush control. The improvement comes from the use of colour, when to apply washes, building up the highlight layers, picking details out carefully.

I think this represents a break through in the quality of my painting output. If I put in more effort upfront to determine my colours and find tutorials that I like (preferably the GirlPainter ones as I like the style) I can follow those instructions line-by-line knowing that I will get good results.

It means that I will never have the most unusual teams but they will all be painted to a higher standard than I would have thought possible a few weeks ago and that makes me happy 🙂


WIP on the Valkyries WIP on the first valkyrie


Trying to get better at painting

I recently finished painting a 2nd Edition Blood Bowl Dark Elf team. I’m not even sure how I got started painting them. I had no intention of painting them, it just happened. I based and primed a number of figures ready for the winter and the next thing I know I am slapping paint on a team and they were done. The result isn’t terrible but it’s not great and as I finished them I cam to the conclusion that I need to make more of an effort to improve my painting.

Since getting back into the hobby I have slightly improved my painting results but this has mainly come as a result of painting more things rather than anything I’ve tried to do. The more you do something, The better you get at it.

Blood Bowl teams are only very limited in terms of the number of miniatures so we’re not talking huge armies to get ready between games or tournaments. I should have enough time to dedicate to each model to do a better job. There is no need to rush, although my natural impatience generally makes me to just that.

I think that the best way to make a change of this nature is to do it wholesale. Sometimes making small changes, tweaks, to your technique or environment are needed. But in this case I need to fundamentally change my approach and break the old habits and mentality. For me this would mean changing the models that I paint, the way I paint and the environment that I paint in.

I ordered a small painting station and rearranged some of the hobby bits in the cave. I decided to practice on models that are different from my usual metal Blood Bowl figures. I watched some of the many online painting tutorials. I looked at how I was holding the model and how many models I painted at once.

My normal – old – technique was more of a production line. I’d paint the base coat of one colour on all models, then the next colour and then next all the way through to the final details. It always felt nice as lots of models had paint on and they were all finished at the same time. But, I got bored, I wanted to get things finished and probably, truth be told, ended up cutting one too many corners. So 1 model at a time for me now from start to finish (as I did more I ended up with running 2/3 at the same time).

I’d been looking at the primed Warhammer Fantasy High Elves on the shelf for many months now and decided that they would be perfect for practising with. The models are plastic and very well defined. There were also plenty of guides and tutorials for me to consume.

I found some brilliant tutorials from GirlPainter and I followed these to the letter. I converted the paint colours to the new Citadel system but followed the process as described. I watched the video a few times and wrote down the steps, colours and mixes so that I could repeat them.

I picked up a Swordmaster and started painting. I mounted the model on a paint pot to change the way that I could hold and rotate the miniature. I cleaned my brushes and I was away.

Straight away I noticed the difference in the quality of the miniature. It felt like a really nice mini to paint. The different sections were well defined and by following a tutorial I wasn’t afraid of how and where to put colour. By painting different colours it naturally meant that I was dipping my brush in the water more. I was also using an old plate as a palette which helped to keep the paint at the correct consistency and the brush not loaded with pigment. This in turn lead to the quality of the brushstrokes being better. It was all working together to be a better overall paint job.

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It all came together pretty quickly and the finish is probably – no, without doubt – the best that I have ever done. All of this at the first attempt. I’ve since started to repeat the process with more miniatures, each time trying to get better and better. Making the details that bit better each time. Trying to blend better each time. There’s still a lot to learn and a long way to go but I’m really enjoying the process and am so enthused that I want to paint up the whole High Elf army over the next few years.

I’ve got some more Blood Bowl teams being delivered at the end of the year and I’m looking forward to trying out my new skills on those over the coming months.

Getting better at painting is possible. Don’t be afraid. Give it a go.

I’d love to hear any painting advice, techniques or resource that you may have to share.


World Cup Painting Pact Update

As a mechanism for me to get something painted over the usually paint free summer months, the World Cup Painting Pact has been extremely successful.

Of the 6 days of the World Cup, I’ve been available to paint on 5 of them and have painted on all 5; probably getting on average 2.5 hours per session.

I started with 4 chaos warriors, 1 minotaur and 9 beastmen all primed in black and stuck to their bases.

As with all of my painting I like to use a production line method when doing groups of models. I do this by painting from flesh to armour on all models going one colour at a time. So I’ll end up with all models being base coated in all colours, then I will apply any washes to all models and finally highlighting and doing any details. Once that is done I’ll varnish/seal and base.

After Day 6 I’m finished with the painting. I’ve managed to get the eyes right – the first time in my life I’ve done this on a painted miniature – and I don’t want to do anything that may break them now. I’m just finalising the basing and varnishing before I can put them on the shelf.

I’ve never done Work In Progress pictures before and have not joined in with other gamers to set goals and support each other to complete them. I’ve been amazed at how I’ve risen to the challenge and have really appreciated all of the nice comments and feedback from those that have followed progress on Twitter. I highly recommend it to anyone. I think it works best when there are a few of you working together who you can chat to. If it was a much bigger challenge, it wouldn’t have a much a personal commitment; it’s easy to say that you are going to do something to the world and not follow through, but when it’s within a smaller group the commitment is always there.

Here are the shots that I took at the end of each day. I will do another post when the basing is finished and I’ve had a chance to take some better pictures.

I’m so pleased with progress and I’m enjoying the fact that I’ve actually got a bit better a painting that I’m going to start striping some more miniatures for later in the year and will start painting another team later in the week. More on that later.

Here are the shots that I took at the end of each day (I didn’t paint on Day 5). I hope you enjoy them and thanks to everyone for your comments and support so far 🙂

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World Cup Painting Pact

I was looking at the pile of primed Blood Bowl minis that are mounting up on the shelf and wondering when I was ever going to get to paint them all. I’m very much a winter painter – sitting in the cave watching a film, the football or an NFL game – the summer months are all about being outside and enjoying life. I am on a Blood Bowl surge at the moment and really want to capitalise on the enthusiasm by getting something painted.

I was pondering this a little on Twitter earlier today. My plan was to paint something in the evenings whilst I watch the World Cup in the background; in the UK the games are all evening and nighttime kick offs so perfect for painting. The fantastic Darren (@howlinggriffon on Twitter) said that he needed to paint something for a tournament that he’s signed up for. It was shortly after that he came up with the killer suggestion – we both commit to painting a Blood Bowl team and use each other for motivation.

So there it is the World Cup Painting Pact (#WorldCupPaintingPact), starting now and ending on Sunday 13th July with the World Cup Final. Pick something to paint and use each other for motivation.

I’ll be painting in the evenings and posting pictures here and on Twitter to keep me on track and will be painting a full Blood Bowl team of 14 to 16 players. I’ll probably be doing my Chaos team but will make the final selection tomorrow. We’ve also got Dave (@ThadrinBB) joining us with his Goblin/Halfling Scotling team.

There are no prizes, no glory, no fame and certainly no fortune but the World Cup Painting Pact will help to get a few miniatures painted.

If you want to keep track of progress then just check back here or follow us on Twitter and by all means join us!

Now let’s get painting.

The collection of Blood Bowl teams starts to grow

New year, new teams 🙂

I’m running out of Blood Bowl teams from my old collection and have taken the plunge to get some new non-GW minis. I’ve gone for the $35 chaos dwarves and amazons from Impact! Miniatures. I’ve never seen the minis in real life so this is a bit of a punt for me. I do want to have one of each of the 24 races though and this seems like a good way to get another two into the collection. They’ve not arrived yet, but I will share my thoughts when they do.

I’ve also been sorting through some of the odds that I had on the shelves and upon deciding that I was only a couple of beastmen short of a chaos tournament build have got those from eBay and will be stripping and priming them soon.

I’ve got the ogres and their companion ogres next up on the painting table and the chaos pact are always there somewhere down the line.

I think that I am pretty close to an undeworld team too with a few goblins and skaven needed to complete the set. That may be the next one collected although I am always on the lookout for my dual-purpose necro/undead team.

So this is where I stand so far…

Painted (5)

Skaven, Elves, Humans, Halfling, Orcs

Owned to be painted (5)

Ogres, Amazons, Chaos Dwarf, Chaos Pact, Chaos

Missing (14)

High Elf, Wood Elf, Dark Elf, Slaan, Underworld, Dwarf, Goblin, Nurgle, Undead, Necromantic, Khemri, Norse, Lizardmen, Vampires




What’s coming up next?

I’ve recently finished a couple of projects and am under way on the next already.

First up are Blood Bowl 2nd edition elves. I’ve got 16 to do, all the positionals plus enough linemen to make up the roster. I’m going for the classic red and blue, Galadrieth Gladiators, scheme and hopefully will be able to get enough detail in to make them look nice on the pitch. They’ve been stripped and primed and some of the detail has been lost , couple that with the frustrating detail of the model and I’m feeling this is going to be a tricky project and maybe one that I’m not 100% satisfied with.

Next up, and primed and ready to go, are halflings. I’ve got 16 halflings plus star player Puggy Baconbreath and 2 early treemen to do. I’m going to go for a very simple one colour scheme (gloves, armour, helmets etc) and then pick out details in another colour. I’m thinking a bright yellow with white trim, but haven’t spent much time on it yet.

Then, I’m not sure. The Warhammer Fantasy High Elves are there. I’m a little nervous about starting them to be honest, and besides I’m feeling a Blood Bowl vibe at the moment.

So, that may lead me into my next Blood Bowl team or teams. I’m looking into picking up some Undead and Necomantic minis so that I can field both teams if needed. It’s going to be a collection of minis that make up the whole squad  rather than an off the shelf team.

That should keep me going for a few months at least 🙂