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I went back to work today. I actually ended up working a fair number of hours last week because unfortunately January is the busiest time of the year for my most important client. In my previous job, where I got eight weeks holiday a year, I would take four of those weeks from Christmas and into January. Now that I work for myself, I don't get eight weeks. In fact last year I don't think I had two full weeks. Most of the holiday I had last year was either running a roleplaying campaign set in the east of Middle-earth in the Second Age or preparing for that campaign.

This Christmas I made an effort to do some creative stuff.

Most of the creative stuff is directly related to that same roleplaying campaign. First of all, a pair of maps (hand-drawn, using dip pen, assorted calligraphy and cartographical nibs and drawing ink and using handmade paper from Nepal). The first (of Numenor) is a direct copy of a Tolkien map, the second is of a non-canonical Numenorean colony in the east which I wanted to do in the same style.

I'm pleased with the results - never done anything like this before, although I had plenty of drawing inks because I use them a fair bit in miniatures painting. The Nepalese paper was a good choice too. There's a rough texture to it which makes the ink vary in thickness, which is exactly the sort of effect I'd hoped for, without really having an idea of how to achieve it.

Speaking of miniatures, I also did quite a bit of miniature painting over the holiday. Not all of these have been photographed (by bunn) because the weather defeated us. As well as the ones below, there's a big Warhammer bloke on some beastly steed (which I'm really quite proud of), Daenerys Targaryen wearing nothing but three newly hatched dragons and some soot (both in 28mm scale) and half of a Hun army in 6mm scale.

This is Fankil. He's a really, really obscure Tolkien bad guy mentioned only briefly in an obscure tale as the lieutenant of Melko(r), predating Sauron in Tolkien's works. In my campaign, he is the "Demon of the North Wind" and is an evil air spirit in much the same way that the balrogs are evil fire spirits. In fact, the miniature itself is a balrog, bought for me as a present by chainmailmaiden and bacchus. I decided not to paint it as a balrog because a) I had this Fankil character anyway and b) I didn't want to get into that whole balrogs-and-wings debate. This is really quite a big miniature. The plinth it's standing on is actually a fence post.

And here we have two trolls:

And finally Prince Irimon of Ciryatanore, the Dawn Prince.


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 12th, 2016 01:05 pm (UTC)
Nice work - especially the minis.
I pine for the days I used minis and battlemat in RPGs, but since I mostly play in a pub these days, that's not really very practical.

Where do you source the Nepalese paper from? I have a friend who adores hand-made paper for her origami.
Jan. 12th, 2016 01:47 pm (UTC)
Thanks. The Nepalese paper was from an eBay seller and surprisingly inexpensive.
Jan. 12th, 2016 01:16 pm (UTC)
Oh those miniature are quite nice - I would probably need to break down and buy bifocals if I wanted to do that now. It's funny because just yesterday I "unearthed" a gollum miniature I painted back in high school on my desk in the basement. The rest of my miniatures from back then are all packed away, but this little guy I have let creep about my office area for almost 20 years now, and he will disappear sometimes for years at a time...

I wish I still had my own hand-drawn, inked parchment map from my all-too-brief campaign I ran in grad school (my very last).
Jan. 12th, 2016 01:49 pm (UTC)
My eyesight is good enough to do 28mm scale painting without assistance, but I need magnification to do 6mm.
Jan. 12th, 2016 02:01 pm (UTC)
I love the idea of a tiny Gollum wandering at will among the monster mountains of your office. I wonder what treasures he has found in his adventures :-D
Jan. 14th, 2016 01:15 pm (UTC)
Surely the fact that he keeps disappearing is a bit of a clue... :-)
Jan. 13th, 2016 02:28 pm (UTC)
Forget bifocals, a monocle is the way to go. You can focus on something small up close with one eye, and watch television with the other :-)
Jan. 13th, 2016 07:54 pm (UTC)
I don't think that would work because you need binocular vision at that scale to work out where the paintbrush is in relation to the miniature.
Jan. 12th, 2016 04:08 pm (UTC)
These are all very nice indeed. I especially like the last colours on the last chap.

Kind of worried by the trolls and the Hun half army, though, since I suspect that we might have to fight them one day.
Jan. 12th, 2016 11:27 pm (UTC)
Not to mention Fankill. I am fairly sure he hasn't so much vanished as strategically retreated :-/
Jan. 12th, 2016 07:30 pm (UTC)
Those have come out really nicely!
Jan. 12th, 2016 09:08 pm (UTC)
I am impressed.
Jan. 12th, 2016 11:24 pm (UTC)
Fankil, lieutenant of Melko
User bunn referenced to your post from Fankil, lieutenant of Melko saying: [...] k at him! There are a couple more things he painted, and a couple of maps, in his original post [...]
Jan. 13th, 2016 08:57 pm (UTC)
Looks good :-) I love seeing how people have creative expression, even if it manifests a different way to me.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )