Sunday, November 21, 2010

Dave G is a Baller

Dave G posted up a really fantastic bit on nearly the exact same thing I've been going on about.  Seriously, go read it if you haven't.  I'll wait.  Probably just make a sandwich in the meantime...

You're back?  Good.

Its very gratifying to see my own ideas help spawn something like this.  It's also very gratifying to see that Dave and I aren't the only ones feeling like we do.  Between the two of us (mostly Dave), there have been a sizable chunk of comments from people who've gone through what we have to say, stroked their beard areas thoughtfully and said "yeah, that's pretty great."

There's a lot to like about Dave's post.  Its the kind of thing I wish I had written.  Curse that handsome devil!  He basically nailed a big chunk of the concepts I hadn't gotten around to committing to this blog.  Dave even managed to steal my as yet unwritten reference to and accompanying praise for what the Massive Voodoo guys are all about.  

Here's the defining quote for the TL;DR people:

...who says that we have to approach our miniatures and constantly try to place them in the context of our reality? Not just because we're already talking about science fiction and fantasy settings, but also because we can treat these figures as three dimensional canvases.

This article deserves a full minute of cheering from a sold out arena-rock crowd.

Think of this post as me holding up my lighter.

Incidentally - is it a good thing or a bad thing that lighters have become rare enough to warrent a software replacement?

Monday, November 15, 2010

The Chunderhawk

... or, rather, the leaked Storm Raven pics e'erbody has been talk talk talkin' 'bout.

Yeah, I know.  Everyone already has a Storm Raven is teh sux0r article.  This is my article.  There are many like it, but this one is mine. 

It's name is Raquel.

Right, so a lot of people seem to hate this little big guy.  I actually like it...  conditionally. 

That condition being whether or not I can chop that nasty-ass turret/air intake combo off and replace it with something that wasn't Magos Fisher Price's first and last crack at an STC vehicle.  Because, really, that's what's ruining the aesthetic for me. 

I like the wings.  I like the boxy body.  I like the goofball tail fins. But that turret... man. The turret and air intake are like this model's unnecessarily tall guido hair.  Other than that, it looks exactly like I'd want it to - exactly like the space-brick I'd throw through the window of my neighbor's space shuttle

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Evidense-Based Painting

I should probably come up with a name for the series I've been slowly but surely churning out.  But not today - it's not all that important.  What is important is the fact that this series has gotten me a ton of new readers and a ton of new mental connections.

Today's post picks up where I left off last week:

I know I've stated this before - but to be absolutely clear - I have no beef with the people who pursue this style or even with the style itself.  If it's your cup o' tea then fine - I've had my fair share of it as well.  My beef is with the perception that its the 'best' or even 'only' way to do things.  In many situations it is, but in an equal number of ways it is certainly not. 

Look at me... quoting myself.  Jeez. 

Evidence Based Practice is a fairly important idea for me.  Professionally, I deal with a number of health science faculty members and students and being able to speak their 'language' is important.  EBP is also a key component of the particular brand of information literacy instruction I engage in.  Whether I like it or not, EBP is a necessary tool for me to do my job.

Fortunately, I do like EBP.  As I've come to have a better understanding of the process at work, its wormed its way into my personal life as well.  Now, getting into the whole deal with EBP would take a lot more space than I'm prepared to use.  The idea that best practices are, well... 'best' is nothing new.  Neither is the idea that rigorous and well executed scientific testing is a pretty great thing.  And that's just the tip of the iceberg.  It would take an entire series of wikipedia articles to even begin to explain the full scope of the process.

For today's ramble, I'm mostly interested in the 'patient centered' portion of the concept.  The idea that whatever it is the doctor decides to do must reflect the values and unique situation of the patient.  It's not just taking medical history and allergies into consideration, its also paying attention to socio-economic status, social values and the like.  For example: while invasive surgery may be the most effective way to treat, say, a tumor - it may not fly if the patient is a hard-core Christian Scientist or too poor to afford the procedure.

Turns out that the whole patient centered thing is also an incredibly useful way of looking at painting advice.  This brings me back to my continued concerns with the "golden daemon style" and my self-quote.  This also links up with the infuckingcredible work that Dave and Ron have started up. 

Knowing that emulating the Golden Daemon Style is the best way to when a Slayer sword and even having a swath of good tutorials on advanced blending is virtually useless for people who don't even know how to hold a brush.  Hell, its fairly useless when you have an entire army to paint even if you do have a handle on things. Simply put, the Golden Daemon style simply is not appropriate for every situation.  But its easy to miss this amongst all the falderal that is the hype about the Golden Daemons and the ever increasing mass of tutorials aimed at that style.  All I can say is, thank Unholy Krondor for people like Dave and Ron.  I think those two have exactly identified a problem and taken steps to fix it.  Starting out painting is scary when this is what people are saying you should strive for. 

So to get back to an example - maybe dry-brushing IS the best technique for a pure beginner or someone with shaky hands. 

Maybe someone's models should be judged on a different set of criteria than whatever the hell would win a slayer sword.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Hax0rz Have Stolen My Megahurtz

Looks like I'm down to a once a week post schedule... unless you count my work over at HoP.  This is another part of my ongoing thought experiment/exploration about the state of miniature painting.  This one is based on some comments I got and a whole bunch of ideas put forth on other people's blogs.  It should prove to be short since I don't have a clever story to start out with.  With any luck this will be coherent on top of short...

Today's subtopic is the internet.  Or, to be more specific, the internet's role in creating the current state of my painting weltschmerz.  This was always going to be a part of the discussion, but it wasn't until the MM(ESNO) threw down some science that things really popped.  I now know a lot more about how to approach the topic and that it needs its own space to breath.

My initial thoughts on the internet's role was fairly negative and a bit reactionary- it was more along the lines of how access to ideas tends to flatten the peaks and valleys out.  More like what Dethtron or, more recently, AbusePuppy were getting at - only grumpier and one-sided.  But, now, things are a little less nefarious and dastardly than I had initially planned on lamenting about.  I also realized that I was coming dangerously close to becoming a slave to the tone of the first two posts - its important to me to explore these ideas, but I need to make sure that I don't get trapped in an artificially created pattern of though.