While the decision to downsize my collection in response to the great inventory was a difficult one, it has so far produced a number of upsides. Extra storage space, less fretting about what to tackle next in the hobby sphere, and of course surplus cash from the sale of unwanted plastic crack. This last one in particular has been a bit of a boon as there is a healthy market for second hand miniatures online, and as i picked most of this surplus up for bargain basement prices i have usually been making a decent profit on each item.
So the question is, what to do with this extra cash? The obvious answer is to reinvest it in more plastic crack, but as this would be counter intuitive given my goal of reducing the collection to a manageable size (as well as possibly resulting in a swift divorce from my ‘higher power’) it is not really an option. However, reinvesting it in the hobby (as opposed to beer and lose women) makes perfect sense, especially if it can help me make progress in getting more models ready for table top usage.
No. Just no.
In this regard, painting commissions make perfect sense. The idea of paying someone else to paint your figures was always a bit of an anathema to me – after all, painting is probably the main focus of the hobby fas far as i am concerned, so why would you pay someone else to do it for you? Where is the enjoyment in that? While I still hold this as true, there are exceptions to the rule of which i have recently become more aware.
The first and most obviously is time. I work and have a family, and therefore it is simply not possible to fit in enough hobby time each week to paint every single miniature i would like to. This is further exasperated by the presence of a large collection, where progress can seem glacially slow and put a real dent in hobby confidence.
The second is skill level. While i enjoy painting, i know where my skill levels lie and have a pretty good sense of what is beyond me. However, that doesn’t stop me from wanting to get the cool models, it just means they will sit in a box forever while I wring my hands wondering how to tackle them.
Sadly, painting ain’t one of them
And so it was that i decide to give commission painting a go. Nick Thrower (AKA The Burning Eye ) offers what seemed a reasonably priced commission service, and as i knew of him from his work on his blog i decided he might be a good place to make my first foray into this world.
In terms of which models i would be sending away, that was the easy part. I bough the Assassinorioum Execution Force game when it came out a few years ago, and have painted everything in the box except the Assassins. These are beautiful models, and i really wanted to do them justice. However, having watched many utube tutorials on how to approach them i could never build up my confidence enough to try. They were also some way off making my Hobby List 201718 goals, and so were the perfect candidates.
I gave Nick a fairly loose brief – i wanted them to be in the traditional black synskin style scheme, but was pretty easy going with where he took it from there. He in turn decided that a more muted scheme with subtle accent colours would probably suit these guys best, and here are the results:
It is fair to say that i am thoroughly delighted with these guys. Nick has done a great job painting them to a level which is far beyond what i can achieve at the moment. The painting itself is very neat, while the washing an glazing has been utilised well and not overdone. The two stage highlights on the bodies are also done really well and nicely blended in. The colour schemes also work very well for me -maybe a bit boring for some peoples tastse, but not mine – assassins are supposed to be broody and lurk in the shadows of the Grimdark, not strut around the table screaming ‘look at my bright pink spandex!’
The cost was £10 per model plus p&p, which after my initial look around an getting various quotes seemed quite reasonable. However the true verdict is whether i would use the service again, and the answer is yes. Absolutely!