Monday, 12 September 2022

The experience of glorious failures.

 Hello and welcome to Inso's World again.

This post is to show everyone that, in order to get further with anything, you have to fail... sometimes, a lot. With this in mind, I thought that I would dig out a couple of my "unfinished work" boxes. These are but two of a number of other boxes of unfinished sculpts, that were close to hand and didn't involve me rooting through the loft.

So without further ado, lets have a wee look, shall we?

I'll start small... and by that, I mean my only foray into the dark realm of 15mm sculpting. Me, being me, decided that I'd go for broke and attempt some space Dwarfs:

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These are on standard wine corks and each of them measure about 11mm to the top of the head. The one at top left, is the only one I finished but I struggled with casting weapons so they died a death. I think that I did OK with them... for a first attempt. I have not been back to 15mm sculpting since.

Staying on a theme, these next ones were destined to be a range of body-armoured space Dwarfs. I finished a male and female body blank and started another couple but didn't get any further:

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I was happy with the detail but I think I got side-tracked by another project.

The next photo is one of a range of sculpts:

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From top left is a Ninja caricature (still WIP but sidelined), a caricature for a friend, and a fantasy character called a "grinning Groper"... on the lower row, from the left, we have an Ogryn sniper and a host of unfinished space Dwarfs. 

This next photo is of various creatures:

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The three in a line, on the left are Mushroom men "bombers". Top middle is a "Knob-headed Shambler" (for a competition that got cancelled) and top right, is a space Lizard. Below is a tentacle creature and a Dragon mount. A bit of a strange collection of sculpts but if I sculpted the same thing all the time, it would get very boring!

Next we have some failed commissions. I really tried to finish these but my heart wasn't in it and it caused me to go off sculpting for the best part of six months. I was open about the troubles I had and no money changed hands. That is the reason I always tell potential clients how unreliable I am and never expect money up front for any commissions:

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Finally, we have a photo of a selection of sci-fi sculpts:

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This is a mix of aliens, robots, female space Ogryn and a superhero. I reckon you should be able to work out which is which.

As I mentioned before, this is a small selection of some of my failed attempts at finishing what I started. I don't look at them as failures at all because every time you sculpt, you gain valuable experience that you can carry on through to the next sculpts. Some (most) of these will remain as they are... a reminder that I don't get it right every time... but some will be dug out and reworked in the future.

The main reason I decided to share this post is to highlight that sculpting isn't always "cut and dry" and sometimes you get to a point where you can't face sculpting at all. Sometimes, stopping what you are working on and sculpting something different, will help you "get back in the saddle" again. Other times you can't face sculpting and the things you were working on are retired to the "unfinished work" boxes... but that isn't always a bad thing. We all have to learn and we all need to makes mistakes and gain experience, in order to get to the next level.

Life is hard, sometimes... and simple things can be a big struggle. Be kind to yourself and try to view mistakes as a learning experience with an opportunity to do better, next time.

... all that said... I WON'T be posting my vehicle scratch-building failures... it would take me a week to get everything listed!

That's all for now.

See you from the road less travelled.

Thursday, 8 September 2022

With sadness and grief.

 Today, I have nothing to say other than this...

Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, has passed away. The very best of onward travels to you, Ma'am.

It was an honour and privilege to serve you and today has filled me with sadness and despair.

The Queen is dead... long live the King.

See you through the rain... 

Monday, 29 August 2022

The random world of sculpting.

 Hello again and welcome to Inso's World.

Today is all about remembering some of the random conversions and sculpts that I have either completed as commissions or have created and then sold/passed them on.

Let's start with a few gizzits. Gizzits are leaving gifts for people who are moving away from the section/squadron. Unfortunately, I don't have images of all of them but here are a few:

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The top one was an old boss of mine, the one below it was a friend of mine and the bottom two are "pengies" sculpted for a couple of friends who were due to return home, from the Flaklands. I have sculpted others but like I said, I don't have images of them. 

Next up, we'll have some conversions that I have done for people:

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From the top, we have a converted GW Giant, a "true-scale" chaos space marine lord, a converted Squat piper, a converted squad of Squats and a set of shields I converted for a charity drive. 

Now we'll have a few random commissions and sculpts that were finished and then sold/given away:

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This batch starts out with a "three-eyed, mustachioed, hairy-groper" that was originally sculpted for a competition but got sold on, when the competition ended. Next is a sculpt that attended "Salute 2022" as part of a participation game. Next is a converted Genestealer assassin... make of that, what you will. The Cowboy was sculpted for one of the game designers of the video game that the character is part of. I am sure many of you will know the game. Finally, I have a Dwarf deep-sea, diver. This was a charity sculpt that was sculpted on a whim and raised money for the British Legion.

There have been others... many others... some tiny conversions and others major conversions and full sculpts but I thought I'd share a few of the more diverse sculpts and conversions to essentially reinforce that "I don't just sculpt space dwarfs".

One of the great things about sculpting for other people is that you get to see what they make of them... here are a couple of examples:

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Pretty awesome, eh?

See you from the desk!

Sunday, 21 August 2022

Where in the world, are my miniatures!?

 Hello and welcome to Inso's World again.

This post is purely one to catalogue where some of my work has ended up and in what format it has been used.

We'll start with my Halfling Snipers:

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Initially, I got these cast up, in resin, and sold a lot myself. This was quite a challenge for me what with packaging, posting, advertising etc... and I ended up with quite a lot that were unsold. As a result I decided to sell to a reputable miniatures company, CP Models and they can now be found here:

Next we have the tale of the five Space Dwarf bodies. I sculpted five bodies, posted them off and they got lost in the mail... so I kindly re-sculpted them for no extra charge. Here are the bodies:

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These were originally sold to someone who then sold them on, to an Australian miniatures company called Wereweevil Miniatures. He has used the bodies to create his range of Space Dwarfs and they can be found here:

Now let's talk about "Leets". I'd never heard of them but someone asked me to sculpt them and provided pix so this is what I came up with:

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They were sculpted for Matakishi Tea House and are available from here (as part of a bundle by more than one sculptor):

Next we have a couple of sculpts that I did for Grekwood Miniatures. The first was a caricature of the founder of the brand, Grekwood... who sadly passed away. The second was a random Dwarf that I thought would work well in the character range... Here's Grekwood:

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He's wearing a fez because... "fezes are cool" (a Dr. Who reference and Grekwood loved that show). This next one is the random Dwarf:

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These are both available from Grekwood Miniatures:

Next we have a Goblin that was originally sculpted for a charity called Goblin Aid. This was to help a fellow sculptor who was assaulted and robbed. Once the sculpt was cast up and sold for a period of time, the sales were stopped and I was asked if I wanted the green back. I said for them to sell it on EBay, which they did... and it was bought by Impact Miniatures. This is the original Judge Gobbo sculpt:

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When the miniature went to Impact! Miniatures, it was converted into a "chibi" judge and sold in that range with a much larger head. It can be found here:

Now we have a couple of miniatures that were part of sculpting competitions for Hasslefree Miniatures. Both were based on "nude blanks" of Hasslefree miniatures. First we have a sci-fi trooper:

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Next, we have a female Sleiti (an alien race in the Hasslefree range):

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At the moment, the Hasslefree Miniatures website is being revamped so I can't post links... but they will be there at some point.

Link to Sci-Fi Trooper TBD

Link to Female Sleiti TBD

Now we come to the most substantial of my sculpting projects, the Space Dwarf "Army Project". This was done in liaison with Macrocosm Miniatures and has been ticking along for about three years, now. Here is the range:

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This range has all been sent to Macrocosm Miniatures and is normally batch produced and sold through Kickstarter before being sold in the Macrocosm store. At the moment, not all of these are available but for a large proportion of them, have a look here:

One of my latest ventures is to sculpt caricatures for Politicos Miniatures. These are sculpts of political figures in a more caricaturised style. The first one was of Dominic Cummings... seen here:

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He is the first of the sculpts and I am currently working on a second one. Dominic can be found here:

Over the years, I have sculpted many little commissions; a lot of them being for collectors who just want a character sculpt. I remember making sets of legs for armour that I got cast up and then sold the green... a Halfling thief... a Space Marine Lord... a "three eyed, moustachioed, hairy, groper" ( a cartoon styled beast for a competition), a computer game character... a Dwarf, deep-sea diver... and many others but they aren't being sold anywhere.

I just thought I'd take some time to go through a few things and put them all in one place... as much for myself as anyone else.

If I remember any more, I'll be sure to update this post.

See you from the future!

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

So much progress...

 Hello and welcome to Inso's World again.

It has been a busy month that started with the arrival of Storm, into our home:

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Storm has settled in well and has been accepted by the other cats. He is a very sociable, cuddly little cat that is full of energy and we are very glad that we made the choice to adopt him. He's a perfect fit for our little family... here's Alfie, looking out for him:

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I have started to work on the garden... I've removed about two thirds of the turf but unfortunately, the kitten's arrival and the blistering heat has meant that I haven't been able to finish it yet... but it will happen and I will build a pebble beach in the garden!

Life is happy and I am happy... so that is cool.

Onto hobby stuff and I have kicked it out of the park with the sculpting. First I finished the five close combat Dwarfs:

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... and then I finished off the DJ:

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That means that all of the current Space Dwarf sculpting is complete and that tomorrow, I will be posting the whole bunch, to Macrocosm Miniatures for casting... that's another nine sculpts for the army:

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Hopefully, I'll get some nice casts back, very soon. The trouble is that I now have no Space Dwarfs left to sculpt so I am going to return to the Politico sculpt that has been sat for ages, in a bid to finish that off as well. It should be a fun distraction.

I would say "that's it for now" but I think I have done better than that, this month so I'm not going to say it.


See you from the sunny side of the street!

Wednesday, 13 July 2022

July heat.

 Hello and welcome to Inso's World again.

Time is ticking by and things are moving along rather nicely.

The nice weather has meant that I have been getting on with "outside" chores... like painting the house and sorting the garden so I have been kept busy when I am not working. I am in very good spirits and can honestly say that I haven't felt this "at peace" for a very, VERY long time. Thank heavens for psychotherapists, eh?

I've been out for a couple of rides on my bike but not particularly far... however, it has made a change from not riding at all.

In a strange twist of fate, we will have a new kitten joining our family next week. His name is Storm:

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He's going to be about eight weeks old when he arrives with us and we can't wait. 

We weren't planning on getting another kitten so soon after the loss of our Sam... but we took the plunge and when we went to look at the litter, Storm made a bee-line for my wife, climbed on her and cuddled in... so we were chosen and couldn't really say no. I am really glad to be welcoming a new little family member.

In hobby news, I have finished painting the first platoon's Command Squad:

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... and have nearly finished the first infantry squad as well:

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I have just started to add the final highlights and once that is done and the base-edges are painted, they will be finished. I have promised to finish sculpting the five close combat Squats after that... but in this heat, painting and sculpting is quite difficult; especially with the way paint/putty properties change when they get warmed up so it is a slow process.

I haven't really been sculpting at all, lately. I seem to be enjoying the hobby for me, at the moment so I must admit to being a bit selfish and getting some paint on my army instead. It's what you need, sometimes...

In other news, I have been enjoying the slow information release for Squats/Leagues of Votann from Games Workshop. I am looking forward to seeing where things go... but I very much doubt that I will be able to keep them "stock" if I get any... I am thinking of turning some into Demiurg, to go with my other troops... an example:

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Once more of the ranges are revealed, I will decide upon which units to convert and which ones I won't bother with... I am looking forward to the vehicles... hopefully, some drilling machines.

Well... that's about it. With summer comes the tourists so I doubt I'll be going too far in the near future. Maybe I'll get some more stuff finished... who knows?

See you from the top of the morning!

Tuesday, 24 May 2022

May... the dawn of a brighter future.

 Hello and welcome to Inso's World again.

It's May and this month is always special because it has Helston's Flora Day to look forward to... and this year it was back after a three year absence... but Flora Day always has an Eve...

The evening before Flora Day, I had my hair shaved off for charity and raised nearly £900 for the Cornwall Air Ambulance Trust. The landlady of my local pub (the Rodney Inn) did the honours and we raised a nice lot of cash, on the evening, to add to the pot. From a "hairy bear" to this in one short haircut:

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I'd like to thank everyone for their support and their kind donations. 

Flora Day was BRILLIANT! I spent the entire day in the Rodney Inn; enjoying the hospitality and watching the dances as they went past. I had lots of visitors during the day and the event itself was amazing... beautiful weather, packed streets and lots of local businesses doing a roaring trade. Proper job!

The following day... the wheels fell off. 

I was contacted by the local vet and informed that my cat had been brought in and was deceased. Yep... my handsome, awesome, complicated cat, Sam, has passed away:

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It seems that he was knocked down by a car and killed instantly... which, I guess is a blessing because I wouldn't have wanted him to suffer. He was such an interesting cat... and he had his issues... but ever since he had an accident with his tail, a few years ago, he suffered from nightmares and always chose to come and sleep near me so that I could comfort him, when he had them. It's almost like his job was done and he was taken away... because I am now Long-Covid free and feeling much better, mental-health wise.... and now he is nightmare free.

Anyway... I'll miss him but have such fond memories of him. He was my boy...

So... I'm better now and I have got myself a job; volunteering at the Cornwall Air Ambulance Trust. It's three mornings a week and I'm loving it. It was a complete coincidence but one of my friends got the manager's job and I was pointed in their direction. Happy times.

It seems like everything is working itself out.

Hobby-wise, I haven't managed to get much done... apart from a small amount of painting. I managed to complete the army command squad for my Squat army:

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... and have almost finished the first platoon's command squad as well... but I don't have a pic of that... It's almost like life is better than sitting hunched over a table, painting or sculpting, at the moment... strange.

Hopefully, the improvements will continue and I'll have more stuff to talk about next time.

See you from the road-side!