Welcome to another year of the Iron Painter challenge! Due to having moved to Germany and the COVID-19 restrictions I decided to recreate the Iron Painter challenge in the comfort of my own studio office! I had missed the last two iterations of the competition but something about the challenge of focusing on hobbying for 12 hours just keeps drawing me back! If you’ve never tried it before I’d urge you to give it a shot, gather some friends and rank each other at the end or just set a day for yourself and stick to your goals!
No paint challenge is complete without audiobooks, YouTube lore videos, music and ambient sounds to distract the mind!
As a reminder the rules of the Iron Painter challenge are:
– Each contestant must assemble, prime and paint a Start Collecting box or equivalent
– Everything must be completed in 12 hours
– No outside help is allowed
Lets get started! This year I wanted to do an army that I had been mulling around with in my mind for the last few years. Ever since the days of Warhammer Fantasy Battles I’d always wanted to do a little force of Beastmen. So for this years challenge I went with the Beasts of Chaos Start Collecting box, a great deal and a fantastic starting spot for the army:
For the color scheme I knew basically right away that I wanted to go for dark almost hellish overtones. I think my reasoning for this is two fold. Firstly, I grew up playing the Diablo games from when I was a wee lad. I don’t think it’d be an exaggeration to say that Diablo II is one of the cornerstones of my relationship with my father and something of which we share fond memories. The Khazra/Moonclan just evoke a quintessentially Diablo feel for me and I wanted to capture that in my Beasts. Secondly, as previously mentioned I currently live in western Germany. If you’ve never been, west Germany in the winter time is a land shrouded in mist and darkness. There’s an overall eerieness that pervades the hills and forests that just makes ones imagination run amok. Something about the dark mossy forest screamed demonic Goatmen to me, so in some ways I suppose this army is an homage to my current home and something that’ll always help me remember it.
Overall I can say that I didn’t find the building process to be too challenging, the Beasts models are quite old now and are a relic of times when GamesWorkshop’s molding techniques were a bit more primitive. I had painted the Beastlord about a month ago in preparation for this challenge to help cage my mind around a color scheme and theme. I didn’t include the Herdstone in the challenge and honestly only spray painted it and put it off to the side. I must say though, it really is a lovely model, the details make it very fun to look at!
So right off the bat, about 4-5 hours of the challenge went towards the assembly, clean and spray phase. By the time I was done with that bit I knew I had no chance. The Ghorgon was by and far the most intimidating model, the sheer size and complexity of detail makes me think that it would probably take a solid 12 hours in its own right!
In the end I finished up about 7 models total, considering that I had roughly an hour per model I’d say thats not terrible! I think I had some lessons learned and in future years I’ll probably go forward with a slightly altered process!
Some ideas I had:
- Have everything assembled, based and primed. I think this would make the challenge much more paint centric and mitigate the time sinks of the rest of the hobbying process (I can’t begin to tell you how many mold lines the Bestigor had)
- I wouldn’t do it alone, I definitely enjoyed challenging myself but I think it would’ve been a lot more fun with a group of friends and a little rivalry! By the time I was wrapping up it kind of felt like a whimper, had I had other people I feel like the pressure of the looming deadline would have pushed me to paint harder!
- I would expand on the Iron Painter concept, I’ve seen some YouTubers do twitch streams wherein they paint for 24 hours, something about that just seems, I don’t know, Steel Painter.
That’s all for today though folks! Thank you for checking out this piece and I’ll see you next year!