Monday, 24 April 2023

From BartekR: Challenge XIII in the can

A much belated wrap up - I’ve been travelling for work but to put a full stop on my AHPC XIII

Adding my voice to the thanks and appreciations: to Curt and Sarah as our gracious hosts;  the hardworking minions for getting the posts up and keeping things running (big shout-out to Martin for keeping the Sunday Crew on the rails, and for his patience as I found my feet). A nod to Mr Roundwood for creating the Studio challenge - fantastic stuff which had me diving into random pockets of my pile of shame (and at least one impulsive purchase of Murch Pulp figures). Lastly, thanks to everyone for their posts and comments – inspirational and sometimes intimidating stuff, but the sense of community and camaraderie has been a definite high point.

Challenge XIII was my first time participating in the AHPC and a definite case of 'long time listener, first time caller'. Its been an absolute blast despite/with its periods of pressure (a few late nights). Most importantly (and I can't overstate this), its pushed me from what has been for years pretty much ‘collecting’ (hoarding) and being in this hobby in investment and theory ('fellow traveller' might be an apt description) to actually getting paint on plastic and metal. Really baseline stuff but a massive shift after close to a decade of overthinking and umming and ahhing on getting back into the doing. 

In terms of actual output, I aimed low in terms of points and walked away pretty satisfied with the result – a lot to improve in terms of technique (I am an utterly inefficiently slow painter) but happy with the journey so far. 

The output, minus the Conquest unit (back with my brother)

From a target 300 points, I came away with 332 pts for painted minis with another 140pts in Studio bonuses for a 472pt total. Not bad for a first attempt I reckon. A really scattered bunch of topics - worked against me a bit but also got me deep into the ‘miscellaneous’ stuff in my stash/pile and let me indulge a lot of nostalgia and fave topics. Amusingly, looking back on my first post, barely anything I did was in the original planned pile and there is a lot more sitting around I didn't get to. Oh well, there will always be a next time! :-)

As an aside, I have to admit the ‘Work in Progress’ Studio really made the difference to kickstarting things at what was up against the clock for the first post. I don’t know if a ‘WIP’ studio/space will remain a thing, but I’m a definite fan of the concept as a fast-track gateway (even if the points values are reduced to account for it being what it is).

Hope to see you all back here for XIV. In the meantime, my plan is to do a hard reset on a very defunct blog and then choose a project from the pile to keep the momentum rolling on. 

Stay safe, and see you all later this year!

Monday, 17 April 2023

From MattW: XIII - It’s a wrap

XIII it’s a wrap

A big hearty thank you to Curt, Sarah, the Minions and all of the participants for another great challenge. A wide range of inspiring, superb and cracking paint jobs were entered,  huge terrain projects, and massive miniature armies were built and hopefully lead mountains were diminished. 

I was really happy with my results this year, my first time I surpassed my challenge goal number and  completed the side challenge. I managed too complete every studio so that really boosted my points. My highlights for the studios were building the ww1 aircraft and the female miniatures painted for Lady Sarah’s limousine which turned out a treat, which too my surprise I won a prize for. 

Rabens Ravens

General Varus

The fruit picker 

Chieftain Marobodus

I had a lot of projects I wanted to get started on, my main focus though was my Roman’s and Germanics. Originally I planned only do 120 odd Roman’s but by challenge end it was close to 200 miniatures, and 140 Ancient Germans plus some nice commands. I did fail to complete the ten cohorts planned for my legion, due to a planning fail and the Royal Mail strike which left me short 4 foundry commands and 18 praetorian shields (which could be possibly in storage somewhere) and running low on enthusiasm for Roman’s and Germanics in the last ten days of the challenge. I plan to complete the last 4 units next month or so when I return from holidays in Australia.

Legio VI

Woden the all father

Seubi tribesmen

Looking forward to next years challenge, and plan too build another big army…..not sure what though. See you all next year.  



Monday, 10 April 2023

In Celebration of Challenge XIII

Well, here we are at the end of the thirteenth edition of the Painting Challenge. The film lot is closed, all the votes have been counted for both 'Minions' Choice' and 'Challengers' Choice', Sarah has made her selection for 'Sarah’s Choice' and I’ve done the same for my SnowLord's selection. Whew, it's been a hectic few days! 


Minions' Choice

Okay, first up! Our intrepid cabal of Minions have convened, muttered their sacred rights and made their 'Minions' Choice' for our last month of the Challenge.

The runners up are:

Dallas for his majestic and imposing Warhound Titan

Kerry for his whimsical Baron Munchhausen.

...and Simon for is incredibly impressive Jewish Revolt Temple Mount

The Minions' Choice' goes to:

Ken for his stunning Italian Wars Spanish Colunella!

Ken, for your prize you have a $50 gift voucher from Westfalia Miniatures. Congratulations mate!


Challengers' Choice

We had 31 nominations this year for the Challengers' Choice, with a great responce from voters (in fact, there were only a few votes separating 1st and 2nd place). I found it a lot of fun to take in the gallery of nominees as it provided a wonderful retrospective of the thee months of the Challenge. Our Monday Minion Peter was kind enough to tally up the votes and so here are the runners up and podium finishers.

3rd Runner Up 

Curt for his Mad Maximillian Roadsters.

2nd Runner Up 

Sidney for his Samurai figures

1st Runner Up

Miles' Battle of Peleliu Project


Podium Finishers for Challengers' Choice

Third Place

Tamsin for her enormously impressive and, well, just enormous 'Spirit of Camberwell'

After looking at it again I think you're right Tamsin. It really is worth 1000 points... :)

Second Place for Challengers' Choice  

Darrell for his sumptuously painted Byzantines. Here are just a few selections of his work:

First Place for Challengers' Choice' goes to: 

Ken for his fabulously salty and foamy WWII ships. Once again, bravo Ken! Challenge XIII has been a banner edition for you - well done!

Ken, for your prize you get a print edition of Simon Miller's 'For King & Parliament' and the 'Marlowe to Maidenhythe' scenario book from 'BigRedBat'.


Snowlord's Choice

Honourable Mentions go to:

Kerry's  Italian Wars Gendarmes

Martijn's Don Quiote and Sancho Panza 

SnowLord's Choice goes to:

Sidney's wonderful Samurai-themed figures and terrain for his upcoming rules, 'When the Last Sword is Drawn'. Absolutely stunning work Sidney, Bravo!

Sydney, for your prize you get a starter boxed set of Moonstone from the good folks over at Goblin King Games.


Sarah’s Choice 

Hi Everybody!

Another fantastic Challenge comes to a close! Well done everyone!

A highlight of the Challenge for me is seeing the terrific variety of female figures being presented.

The scope of this years figures - from cut throat lady pirates, Viking shield maidens, vampires and zombies, steam punk witches and French Revolutionary peasants, ghosts, nuns and queens and an excellent Frankenstein Bride - has been a real pleasure to re-visit these past few days.

I find that no matter how diligent I am during the Challenge, there are often figures that I missed or forgot about. It’s such a treat to come across these unexpected treasures!

I’d like to highlight the sculpting skills of GeoffreyT, his Bandida was a really fun entry and I liked the cool-hippy chick vibe of his sculpt. Very characterful!

Another of my favourite entries this Challenge was the elegant 75mm Female Duelliste from MartinC. The paint job reminds me of classic toy soldier style… which is awesome. The Duelliste herself could be the heroine from a Georgette Heyer novel .. also awesome!

This years Sarah’s Choice Award will be un-precedented .. and the Snow Lord agrees that I can do this …

We have two winners for Sarah's Choice:

StuartL and MattW!!

StuartL’s Malifaux Mannequins Showgirls, the fish seller, and his steampunk witch are all wonderful.

MattW’s Apple Lady with donkey, medieval milk maid and the French Revolutionary peasant women were also standouts for me.

Definitely treats for all of us to enjoy!

And, speaking of treats, Stuart and Matt, you both will get a $50 Gift Voucher from our good friend Kawe over at Westfalia Miniatures.

Thank you and congratulations!!

- Sarah

Congratulations to all the nominees and winners. Thank you for sharing your wonderful work with us. To the winners, please email me to work out the details for getting your awards. 


Before Challenge XIII concludes, I’d like to thank again our fabulous Minions for all their hard work herding entries, managing the Spreadsheet of Doom and keeping on top of the duels. I also wish to thank our Challenge Sponsors for their generous support of the event.  If you have a free moment please visit their web stores via the banners on the left sidebar and see if something strikes your fancy.  As I say every year, the Challenge doesn’t need prizes to be a success, but it adds a bit of sparkle to the show.  Thanks again to all our wonderful sponsors! 

Finally, and I really can't say this enough, I want to thank all our Challenge participants. This event would be nothing without all your industry, your humour and most of all, your open-hearted support. All of these make the Painting Challenge what it is. You folks are terrific, thank you.

So in closing, I bid you all a fond farewell. I hope you enjoy the next eight months 'off', and until we get together again next December...

In Memory of Oscar

- Curt