2020 Review of a bad years good bits
I am a born optimist and for me any year that I and my loved ones get to the end of in one piece is a good one. In that spirit I decided to do a top 10 of the jobs completed this year. Except I failed miserably and it ended up as just a whole load of jobs that I really enjoyed, was pleased with the result ,or were just unusual. They were supposed to be in a sort of order rising to a crescendo with number 1 but once again that was a fail as having no common judging standard....well it was a fail.
So anyway here are my 2020 faves in literally no order at all (literally a metaphor for my life)
Raven Guard Snipers - apologies for forgetting the actual model name but im guessing it ends in 'ors' or perhaps 'ers'. Whatever the case these were great minis that fell together with fantastic fitting which for me as a painter is a joy.
These are Aggressors and I remember the name as had to do a LOT of these earlier in the year and even though the parts fit well there are really way too many parts for a wargames mini. They are about 40 parts per mini which is at least 35 parts too many...
Bolt Action is as popular as ever in 2020 and i Had Germans, Japanese, Hungarians and Soviets to complete this year. This little Sdkfz 222 was one of my favourites as being quite dinky its trickier to get everything looking good. I've done these in desert camo in the past as well as Early War Panzer Grey and they always look cool.
Weirdest WW2 model this year has to be this Aerosan snow ski scout vehicle which is frankly like a WW1 Farham bipane with the wings pulled off and mounted on skis. Their wa competition from some late war Japanese APCs but this was a clear winner.
Early war Soviet stuff looking spic and span before the weather and general adversity gets to them!
Biggest AFV this year was this giant JS III from Warlord. I had no King Tigers this year so this was easily the biggest and a nice build. At the other end of the war and not seeing action it is also pretty mint condition with little weathering.
From a huge KS Monolith's Mythic Battles this is Team Poseidon. Mythic Battles is now a firm favourite in my household and i am constantly getting beaten by my daughter. Having been sent the whole KS to paint I managed to get the core and Pandoras box expansion off Ebay for myself and now wait anxiously for Monolith's new KS to get my hands on the rest (like Poseidon) that I missed. These will, like my own MB set, remain unpainted....
A recent commission for a USA customer was the Malifaux Infamous crew the star of which for me was Mancha Roja below. Dynamic and easy to build (unlike some Malifaux minis...)
The whole Infamous crew and extras lead by Captain Zipp.
Also this year I managed to squeeze in this Hoffman crew with the big red Robot at the back proxying for Melissa KORE https://www.firstcommissionpainting.co.uk/single-post/painting-update-3-hoffman-crew-malifaux
And much earlier in the year this OTT Jack Daw Tormented crew with Drowned, Hanged and Crooked man added.
as well as this 1st edition Jakuuna - one of the scariest minis ever.
On a brighter note I also got to paint quite a lot of Burrows and Badgers minis which were a pleasure. There were literally loads i could have picked here but went with this Aztecy Armadillo
and spooky Raven Mage. Actually Ive just remembered I have another blog entirely devoted to them here..
Terrain pieces aren't usually my favourites but this year I had some corking pieces to work on from German manufacturer Ziterdes including this Dwarven fortress. These are made of a super high density foam and are light but really durable.
Also Ziterdes this wrecked ship
and this step pyramid. so cool. https://www.firstcommissionpainting.co.uk/single-post/painting-update-x-thomarillion-terrain and https://www.firstcommissionpainting.co.uk/single-post/bare-ruined-choirs
Infinity was big again this year with the publication of N4 and I suspect will be really big post Covid. The minis are beautiful and it seems like an accessible game cost wise. Below is pretty much a complete faction for )-12 the space police and individual photos are here...
2020 also saw new commissions for Ancients with this Sohei job being a favourite as I rarely get to paint anything yellow! These are Footsore Miniatures for Test of Honour and are excellent quality metals.
Also from Footsore are these beautiful King Arthur Spamalot miniatures complete with squires. These were fun as I have not often painted shield designs freehand and these came out well.
Knight Miniatures new edition Batman game was released at the start of the year and immediately fell into the Covid hole of doom with a competition game unable to be played. Additionally there were distribution and delivery problems which Knight have now tried to ameliorate after a slow start.
Having said that the miniatures remain remarkable whether 2nd edition like this Suicide Squad or the 3rd edition core set Joker and Harley models below.
Lastly we have some GW Lord of the Rings stuff. Unlike everything else here these are for me painted up for R&R at weekends and in the evenings as a break from commissioned work just for the pleasure of painting some of the best minis ever made.
The Balrog. I wanted a metal one but had to settle for the plastic version.
The fellowship in metal - outstanding!
So that was 2020 highlights for me. Thank you to all the customers who have given me the opportunity to paint such a wide variety of great miniatures. Happy new year to all!