Ever since I was a kid, I was always wanting to make stuff; I would be inspired by what I saw on tv, in computer games, films and books. It took time and patience to develop some degree of skill to be able to replicate what I saw, and innovate. In school, I would paint, and sculpt with clay. At home, I would make everything I could out of cardboard and sellotape; I made pump action shotguns, the guns the droids use in Star Wars Ep 1, rifles with an attachment for a laser pen etc. Endless fun. That developed into foraging in the woods to build bows and arrows- my parents got a little frightened at the sight of arrows flying 50/60 meters at each other. For the record, the arrows were blunt! I also used to feverishly paint small resin models, Warhammer.
On the face of it, Warhammer is seen a nerds only game/hobby. Smelly, geeky kids who have no idea how to dress them-selves, let alone do a press-up. I am not going to argue about Warhammer, but I am interested in talking about the hobby side; painting and sculpting from my experience.
The Warhammer hobby requires a huge level of skill to paint and sculpt to a high level. There are many businesses dedicated to this, search online if you want. I was attracted the models and the sci-fi story it had, plus my friends were into it. Over time my painting skills developed through copying what I saw in magazines, and adapting techniques so that I developed my own style. This helped me achieve a good grade for my practical art exam! So this hobby isn’t something to scoff at, transferable skill blah blah.
However, I shelved painting and sculpting as other things in my life took over. But after a near 10 year hiatus I picked up the brush once again. And it feels great. I spent some money to get started again and get the ‘feel’ of painting 30 mm tall models. I wanted a challenge, as I was inspired, so I bought a bunch more and started doing some sketches for what I wanted to achieve- a spartan army… More details on that in the next post. On the technical side of it, my painting technique is basic just now- but I have new projects in the future to look at different techniques.
Above all, the joy I get from painting and sculpting is immense, and something I should not have stopped. One interesting thing that hit me while I have been reflecting on all this, is the idea of ‘feel’ in art. Understanding what each element can do for me, I could get more out of it, thus keep pushing what I could make therefore how much fun I/we could have. Is this something you have thought about?