Sculptors Do It With Small Tools

Prophet Minis recently announced their new ‘Sculptors Do It With Small Tools’ product which is a kit that contains enough materials to sculpt up to half a dozen 28mm figures. For the tools and materials supplied it looks to be pretty good value at $34.99us. Unfortunately I already have plenty of sculpting tools, dollies and green stuff littering my paint station.

However I noticed they also sell the sculpting tutorial included in the kit as a separate, downloadable PDF for a mere $7us. For that price I figure it’d be hard to lose so I grabbed a copy.

It’s not a bad tutorial at all. Most of the basics are covered included the working properties of green stuff, how to use and create your own armature dollies, various figure proportions and ratios (for men and women), dynamic poses and visual balance for figures.

The tutorial also contains some specific methods for creating hair, fur and thin sheets of green stuff for clothing and cloaks as well as a two page step-by-step on sculpting faces. Finally it includes a couple of handy reference pages giving figure ratios in various scales (54mm to 10mm) and front/back pictures of showing stylised male musculature.

There are a couple of gaps in the tutorial. For example I would like to see a step-by-step of an entire figure being sculpted and while creating faces is covered there’s no tips for sculpting hands which can be another problematic area in my experience.

Even so $7us well spent I feel and the PDF has been carefully filed into my ‘sculpting’ folder.

Update: According the to the Prophet Minis forums a tutorial for sculpting hands should be appearing on their web site in the future.

Via Tabletop Gaming News.

Carving Pumpkins!

Sculpted Halloween Pumpkin Ok a little off topic, but here’s some lovely (relatively speaking) Halloween Pumpkin Sculpture from Villafane Studios (warning annoying Flash front page), with a how-to photo tutorial even!

We’re not quite as Halloween crazy here in New Zealand as people are in the States. We’ll do a bit of trick and treatin’ in the street with the kids but nobody wears costumes to work or anything. I tell you it was a bit of an eye opener catching the Silicon Valley Light Rail during Halloween while I was working over there several years ago!

Via Boing Boing.

Games Workshop Rapid Prototyping

CNC Milled Tyranid Claw Here’s an interesting trade article about the systems Games Workhop are now using for rapidly creating their new plastic figure lines. Gone are the day of ‘3 ups’ and pantograph machines.

I assume they’re still using the old fashioned sculpt and vulcanized mold system for metals but who knows?

There’s some interesting tidbits in there too, like the fact that GW used to produce 60 ‘tools’ (ie. new molds) a year but now they’re looking at 100 ‘tools’ a year with the new system. I assume this means we’ll see a lot more plastic regiment boxes in the future. Apparently they also run the plastic molding process ‘almost 24 hours, 365 days a year’.

As a gamer it’ll be very interesting to see what their sprues look like in several years once GW are old hands at this method. I haven’t been that impressed with the newer sprues (eg. Dwarf Warriors) because of their limited poses and loss of some detail on some surfaces which is presumably a side effect of this newer method.

Article spotted on The Darkwing.

Detailed Press Molds

Detailed 28mm Scale Armor There’s an interesting technique described in the forums here. How to create detailed, custom press molds by scribing with a sharp tool and then using them to create fantastic looking armor details.

This is a French site, so the instructions are in French, but the pictures pretty much tell the story…plus you can always try translating the page.

There’s a fine example of this technique on

FreeBooter Miniatures Tutorials

Werner Klocke of Freebooter Miniatures is a superb, independent sculptor of 30mm figures. I frequently visit the site to check up on his latest greens.

It also seems he may be posting some sculpting tutorials in 2006 on the Freebooter forums which should be very interesting to follow! Most of the forum is in German, but WIP photos tell the story anyway for sculpting.

Ebob 28mm Horse Green

Ebob 28mm Horse Green I regularly visit the Ebob Miniatures ‘Greenroom’ to see what this sculptor is up to. There’s invariably interesting work on their site and the most recent piece (as of this posting) is no exception. Imho this beautiful and dynamic 28mm horse sculpt far exceeds the mediocre plastic ‘horses’ that Games Workshop include in their Fantasy line. Lovely!

This horse is available from Ebob Miniatures as a multi-part white metal kit. Despite the fact I have almost no use for a 28mm horse at the moment I’m very tempted just to order one! The creator also grants permission for commerical re-use and re-casting which is interesting.