Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Topic of the Week - On Painting Miniatures

Topic of the Week is a question pose by Vince Venturella to the Warhammer Youtube community to encourage interesting discussions. The questions are sometimes Warhammer and/or Gamesworkshop specific while other times they are more general relating to the hobby itself. This week topic is the latter. The topic for this week is On Painting Miniatures. Vince ask "would you still paint miniatures if there was no game involve", "what is the value of painting to you", "is painting a choir" and "your feelings on pre-painted miniatures". I didn't think I would do a responds for this topic because I really hate painting. Still, after thinking about it I realize my answer is more complicated than that. So here is my written responds.

I'm going to start with the pre-painted miniatures part as my answer to it has change over my time in the hobby. I started the hobby with Warhammer 40k. I hated painting then as much as I do now, maybe more so. I really wish the 40k models were pre-painted at the time. I didn't have a lot of model and what I did have were either not painted or partly badly painted. Over time I develop a narrative for my forces. I've always enjoyed crafting stories and making one within the 40k universe help connect me to the game and to my miniatures. As I got a better picture of what my cast of characters look like, I got further away from a "default" look of 40k. It wasn't something I thought about at the time but if GW did come out with pre-painted miniature after I came up with my own narrative, I'm not sure I would want them anymore because they no longer fit into my story. When I move from 40k to fantasy, I had completely divorce my miniatures from the official setting. All honestly I didn't know Warhammer fantasy even HAD an official setting until years after I got into it. I kind of thought it was a make-up your own kind of setting. In any case, not only was I going with my own color scheme, in some cases I went with different miniatures and/or conversions. Examples of this is me swapping the traditional colors for the Chaos Gods because I want my favorite color to match my favorite Chaos God. Also I modified my Nurgle theme into more of a corrupting Nature. When my army is this unique and different from the "default" setting, pre-painted miniatures does me no good. Making miniatures my own is really important to me now and if I get into a new game, I would want to put my own twist on the models. This is why I have had very little interest into getting into the X-Wing game. Some settings are so big and important that the main reason to play the game is the setting itself. Ignoring the setting of Warhammer to me is one thing, trying to do that with Star Wars doesn't feel right. I love Star Wars but if I'm putting my limited funds into a miniature game, I want to play something that feels right crafting my story. So that's why when I started the hobby I really want to buy pre-painted models but now I avoid games that has them.

On the main topic, would I still paint if there was no game involved? That depends if that includes games I make up. I always thought I would be playing miniature games at some point in my life. Before I learn about Warhammer 40k I thought I would have to make the game myself and somehow find pieces for it. Now that I think about it, there is no way I can divorce the game from the miniatures because if these types of models were out there, I would develop a game for them if one didn't already exist. It would have taken me longer to get into the hobby but I think I would eventually find my home here. I do not enjoy painting at all. I do enjoy seeing my story come to life on the table. Despite my lack of enjoying painting, I have notice my painting skills have gotten better over the years. This is really surprising to me as I paint so irregular and infrequent. I do spend a lot of time thinking about painting in terms of what colors I should use for certain units and in general what colors I see walking around that I would like to use on a model. The most common example of this is seeing a car drive by me with a unique color scheme and I'm trying to imagine what would an unit of knights with that color for their armor look like? I'm not trying nor have any desire to be a better painter. Instead it is a by product of trying to get my vision on the table.

One of my goals for this year is to paint more often. It is not an easy goal for me to achieve given how much I dislike painting itself. Yet so much of what I want to accomplish is reliant on me getting a lot of painting done. And that I think pretty much sums up my relationship with painting. Thanks for reading.

Topic of the Week link - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5_nt5UWvnks

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