Old Mini Monday 14 – Fantasy 04

Old Mini Monday 14 – Fantasy 04


While visiting my brother, he rounded up all his old painted minis and let me borrow the box of them to share on the blog.



(From Left to Right) Ghast and Ghoul 1 (11-434), Troglodyte 2 (11-444), Bugbear 2 (11-412)




Ral Partha Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (AD&D) line. The first mini on the leftt apparently came from a blister pack “Ghast and Ghoul”. I’m not sure if we had the other two minis in that set, maybe they will pop up in later pics.

Took me a bit of searching to find the “Troglodyte”, as I thought it was a “Lizardman”. Certainly looks more like a Lizardman to me regardless. Perhaps because of the green paint. Another one from a blister pack.

I thought maybe Bugbear 2 had a spear, but looks like he originally had a battle axe in his hand. Maybe the axe came separately and got lost or fell out. I can’t imagine any reason why we would have removed the axe from his hand at that time. Yet another from a blister pack.



Not much to tell regarding these. Used as monsters in various games. My brother just told me that he painted the Troglodyte green on purpose, so it would match a monster in our dungeon crawler game. The Ghast/Ghoul looks like he could be used as a radioactive mutant, but my brother said he just painted him as a rotting undead.


Tangent – So Close

As probably no surprise, I sometimes get impatient with my painting. It doesn’t really cause me to rush things, so at least it doesn’t affect the consistency of my painting. But it does lead to some anxiety at times. It’s difficult as I sometimes feel like the amount of time I have available to painting miniatures is not enough as well as the number of finished projects being a bit low.

This gets amplified when I reach the “So Close” zone. I think initially I’m in the ‘this will probably never become anything’ zone. Then after I get most of the base painting done I can start to see the mini take shape. Applying washes really adds to the taking shape stage, and then I start thinking about how I can glue the sub-assembled parts back together. That’s when I really feel like I’m “So Close!”. But then stuff happens. Highlights to do, maybe something didn’t go right with the assembly, I get the crazy idea to magnetize parts or customize something, etc. Sometimes a bit of discouragement sets in at this point, but usually I can see the finish line, and get through it.

But getting from the point of “So Close!” to “Here’s the mini I’ve been painting for weeks on end!” is a tough one.

I’m curious if other people go through these same stages while painting? Is it all smooth sailing for you or are there points where you just want to swear up a storm?


23 thoughts on “Old Mini Monday 14 – Fantasy 04

  1. Thanks for sharing those old minis! Oh yes, there are times when I resort to swearing at minis while painting! It’s part of the fun! I’ve made a switch round in painting recently that seems to make the process easier – I used to paint uniforms first and then all the stuff like belts, equipment, boots and weapons afterwards, but now I paint those bits first and leave jackets and trousers last! Seems to be much easier! Faces and hands always first though!

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  2. Sure thing JNV!

    I nearly wrote one day about the order of painting mini parts. Unfortunately, I found that experts and myself don’t seem to be very consistent on the subject. Painting a single prototype seems to help a bit, as I kind of learn what areas I could probably paint first. But typically I always paint from the torso out. I guess one advantage to that is, is mistakes are more easily covered up that way. An errant spot of paint on the hands or face after they have been fully highlighted is much harder to fix than an errant spot of paint on some armor. I wish I could remember back to when I first started painting, I imagine back then I would’ve painted the head first or whatever other part of the mini most caught my eye. Possibly the weapons. I should definitely try switching up the order, if nothing else it will mess with my brain, haha!

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  3. I’m no expert, so I’d just go with what works for you! My dad used to paint 54mm figures way way back and he always taught me to do flesh first because you can tone the rest of the figure around that! I’ve changed a lot of things, but I still do that! But I also know people that swear by doing faces last! I think you’ve made a good point about working out from the torso though, sounds practical!

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  4. I’ve learnt over the years that painting is very much like Christmas shopping. When I go out shopping I pretty much know early doors if it’s my day or not. First shop, first idea, first present on a role, good day, continue. When the opposite applies I’ve moved on from persisting to no avail to calling it a day, packing up early and leaving it to another day. Same applies to painting, when it’s not going right I’ve learnt to stop swearing and persevering in vain and leaving it instead for another day. As for where I start, always the face, never anywhere else. Why? As far as I’m concerned the face is the most important feature of the figure. If I get that right I know the rest of the figure is going to be fine. If I don’t like the face then there is no point continuing because I will never like the figure in a million years.

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    1. Interesting, another face first person! Are you sure you guys don’t know each other?! 😉

      Certainly an interesting approach, and for me it translates a little differently. I’ll toil away at the torso, belts, straps, and buckles….then I finally get to paint the face…and *bam!* the miniature starts to come to life. In a way it’s like I’m saving my dessert for last. Though I could also liken it to a complicated dessert recipe that I have to make myself, and if I *muck* it up, my whole damned dinner will be ruined! 😉

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      1. At the end of the day it’s each to their own. Ì don’t think there are any hard and fast rules but we tend to make our own. For example, once I’ve done the face I always paint the next part of the figure which touches the body and work my way out. For example, face, followed by shirt, followed by jacket, followed by straps over jacket, etc.

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  5. I like that Bugbear. Looks like a pretty cool Model. Entirely possible that his axe just broke off at some point. Weapon handles were often kind of weak on some of those Ral Partha figs. The Troglodyte looks way more like a Lizardman to me, too. Especially since, IIRC, Troglodytes were described as always using crude stone weapons, not metal ones. They’d team up with Rust Monsters, since they didn’t need to worry about getting their gear rusted away and eaten.

    On painting order, if there’s one dominant colour, I always do that first. That way, I can slap it down with a big brush, and do some real quick and sloppy drybrushing for the highlights without worrying about messing anything around it up. After that, or if there isn’t one major colour, I try to work from the “deepest” layers outward, to minimize the amount of time that I’ve got to sneak a brush past something I’ve already painted. Generally, yeah, that means flesh first.

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    1. Yep, that’s pretty much my painting tactics nowadays too. Look for areas where I can apply a lot of color without worrying too much about details. Then work outwards towards the more detailed parts.

      Ok, that’s funny….I thought I had wrote the story of the missing axe. Guess it didn’t get saved or something happened. Anyways, talked to my brother about it, and it turns out that a lot of the minis are missing their parts, because he didn’t actually know how to make the parts stick with the glue we had on hand! Seems trivial now, but back then we didn’t know about green stuff, pinning, or even that there are certain glued that will work better with metal, plastic, etc. I think we just used “super glue” brand.

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      1. I also like that Bugbear. The troglodyte would be fine, as a Lizardman. The zombie I really don’t care for. Maybe as a ghast, but it’s not a model that I would probably pick up. Especially with today’s options. The other two I certainly wouldn’t mind having.


      2. Ha! Yeah, that’ll do it. I don’t recall, but I wouldn’t be surprised if my brother or I stuck some of our earlier attempts together with PVA or something.

        I’m having trouble telling how I feel about the Ghast. No offense to your brother, but I really don’t like the paint scheme it’s done up in, and I can’t really get a feel for the sculpt itself when the colour on it is so eye-searing.

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        1. Yea, that’s another one I left out. I asked him about the Zombie, he was just trying for some horrid undead skin. I thought maybe he was going for radioactive mutant, but I’m guessing he grabbed a bottle that probably said “Putrid Flesh” or somesuch and it didn’t turn out like expected. That’s my theory, as I’ve made the mistake of going by paint labels too many times myself.


  6. I’m definitely all too familiar with the “so close” problem. There are numerous points at which a model can stall but I find that one to be one of the most frustrating. The finish line is in sight and sometimes it only needs quarter of an hour or so to get it done but instead it sits there, sometimes for months, sometimes even for years.
    It’s like the old poem says;
    Procrastination is my sin,
    It gives me greatest sorrow,
    I really must stop doing it,
    In fact I’ll start tomorrow!

    Nice bugbear by the way, you really can’t have too many bugbears in your life. 🙂

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    1. Nice poem! Thanks on the bugbear. Surprised that he seems to be a fave this time around. I still really liked the goblins and some of the others. Which I might start hunting for on Ebay someday.

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  7. The Troglodyte and Bugbear both look pretty good – even moreso considering their age – your brother definitely did a good job on both of them.
    As for faces first and last, I’ve seen it written up both ways, and what it comes down to is that anyone who tells you that one or the other is the only way to do it, or the “best” way to do it should sod off. (I’d use stronger language, but it’s your blog here, not mine! 😉 ) Like many things, it’s down to the individual. For *me*, faces happen last. While I’ll do the broad skintones including the head whenever, mixed in with everything else, The final skin tones, eyes, teeth, stubble, etc are all part of the final, fine detailing, along with script, tattoos and the like. They’re really the reward for pushing through the rest of the work.
    As for getting stuck – happens to me all the time. And I mean ALL the time. The only way through (for me, again) is to force your way through and just make yourself finish the thing. The next nine models I’m, likely to finish and post are all ones I’m stuck on and need to push through. It’s actually the reason i started these challenges – more motivation to help me get old, “stuck” models finished.

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    1. Thanks Azazel. I don’t think he’s been reading my blog, so I’ll pass along your compliment. I have sent him some pics of the stuff you’re doing, and we’re both pretty mind blown! 😀

      Yea, sounds like we’re on the same page on order of painting. Have you ever tried it the other way around?

      Come back next week, for more on ‘being stuck’.

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      1. I’ve read about “face first” but it never made sense to (or for) me. Why do the most delicate stuff first when you’re going to be doing all the rough as guts other stuff afterwards with a chance of messing up the fine details due to a bit of paint spatter or over-enthusiastic drybrush’s bristle? If it works for others, then Kool & The Gang, but I’ve never felt a need to change the way I do things there.
        Oh, and I’ve just finished 4 of those “stuck” models. Now, onto the next ones!(?)

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