Friday, 26 August 2016

Genestealer Patriarchs

Here's a 1989 'running' patriarch. My original was irretrievably broken (sat upon) in the mid 1990s, but nostalgia made me pick this one up a few years ago at a second hand stall. Check out the 1st edition Space Hulk tiles!


And that nostalgia bit again with Deathwatch: Overkill. Here's the big bad boy himself.



Over the next few weeks I'll be finishing off my genestealer cult and will blog about them here!

Friday, 19 August 2016

Imperial Assault: Greedo and Obi-Wan

Greedo


I can't help but feel a little sorry for Greedo, pulled posthumously into a controversy not of his making. He's got an interesting palette of pastel colours, and a fairly monochromatic face. I painted the eyes with gunmetal and two blue washes. It was a mild struggle getting good definition between his green-blue face and his blue-green flight suit, but it came out OK in the end.

Greedo becomes famous

Obi-Wan


He only really came together for me when I painted his hair and beard. Not a bad figure, but I'm not sure how often he will hit my tabletop being, well, dead. From a certain point of view.

Obi-Wan teaches his last lesson

Friday, 12 August 2016

Albany, Western Australia- war memorials

Last week I visited Albany, which is at the southern tip of Western Australia, about 4.5h drive south of Perth. Albany has a very impressive set of war memorials, many of which have been improved recently for WW1 centennial commemorations. I took a fair few photos- the weather was lovely with bright blue skies. The pictures don't convey what a lovely trip this was.

The WW1 convoys


In late October 1914 a convoy of over 30 ships stayed a few days at Albany before departing for Europe. They carried over 30 000 Australian and NZ troops, and thus Albany was the literal last sight of Australia many would ever have. It was also the first large meeting of the commonwealth forces, and a genesis of ANZAC. The transports moored in King George Sound, where today plaques on the hills above show what the moored ships would have looked like. They weren't grey, but were green, blue, and yellow, with numbers on their sides.
The first convoy moored in King George Sound

King George Sound

Views from the top


The convoy was rerouted to Egypt, and the troops wound up in Gallipoli. A second, slightly smaller, convoy came through in December 1914.

The National ANZAC Centre


I confess I didn't know this existed, but it opened in 2014. It is a compact and very modern museum to the Australian and New Zealand efforts in WW1. It strikes an excellent balance between information, recorded experiences, preserved items, and room for contemplation. There is a spectacular indoors pool of reflection with a view out over the bay. I didn't take any photos inside.

National ANZAC Centre

The Princess Royal Fort


The ANZAC Centre is located in the grounds of the Princess Royal Fort, which was a working coastal defence fort from the 1890s to the 1950s. The parade ground is now the carpark, and there are well-maintained gun emplacements and associated buildings.

6" gun

Cutaway 6"

Garrison building overlooking the parade ground

Back of the Commandant's house- now a fancy restaurant!

Within the grounds is a quonset hut housing items from HMAS Perth. Perth was deliberately sunk off, ahem, Perth to become a diving site.

There are also a collection of naval guns and missiles.

HMAS Perth






Ikara anti-submarine missile

SM-1 SAM

Submarine memorials


The Australian submarine AE2 accompanied the first convoy to the mediterranean, where she slipped through the Dardanelles before being sunk on 30 April 1915. She has a memorial on a jetty in Princess Royal Harbour.
AE2 memorial

Looking back into town

Albany was a US submarine base during 1942. Over 500 US submarine patrols were launched from Australia. The black torpedo in the photos above was donated by the US Navy to commemorate this. There is a memorial to those 'still on patrol'.
USN submariners' memorial

The Desert Mounted Corps memorial


On the hill overlooking Albany is the Desert Mounted Corps memorial. The Desert Mounted Corps included the famous lighthorsemen who performed the charge at Beersheba, as well as capturing Jerusalem.
Desert Mounted Corps Memorial


The memorial overlooking King George Sound

The statue is spectacular. The original was in Egypt, and was destroyed by a mob in the Suez Crisis. This replica was built and sited in Albany in the 1960s.

ANZAC Peace Park


In the town of Albany itself, there is a small park dedicated to ANZACs and peace. It has multiple plaques outlining the town's involvement in WW1. Over 2100 local men enlisted, out of a population of 4500.
ANZAC Peace Park
ANZAC Peace Park
ANZAC Peace Park

There is a grove of pine trees which are cut from the original Lone Pine (for more information on Lone Pine, see my post here). I found these strangely moving.
Lone Pine grove

There is also a 1970s replica of the brig Amity, which brought the first British settlers to the area in 1826.
Brig Amity

Albany


I was very impressed with the scope of memorials in Albany. It is a lovely historic town, full of federation buildings. If you are down that way, you must pay it a visit. Finally, in the bushland around the fort, I found a few natives!
Two skinks

A bandicoot!


Friday, 5 August 2016

Imperial Assault- Bespin heroes and villains

The Bespin Gambit has an emphasis on espionage and intelligence, which is reflected in the heroes and villains- Lando and pals can be found in my previous post.

Davith Elso is a Jedi with a 'shrouded lightsaber' who is into being stealthy. I am reasonably happy with the glow effects, which don't come out well in my photo. He looks an awful lot like Nightwing...
Davith Elso

Murne Rin is an Ithorian agent who relies on misdirection and deception rather than force. I think her robes make her look like some sort of aquatic invertebrate.
Murne Rin

Agent Blaise is supposed to be a master interrogator. However, he's got the impotent rage angry fist thing going, and what is he doing in scout armour with an MG-34/ heavy blaster?
Agent Blaise

The ISB infiltrators look cool, straight out of some computer game. I only wish they were in a firing pose. Lining all the armour edges in grey was frustrating, but paid off.
ISB Infiltrators

Finally, Bossk. Not at all sneaky or stealthy, he's an angry brutal reptile.
Bossk
Here's my favourite Bossk moment:


You just got Bossked!

Friday, 29 July 2016

Imperial Assault- Inhabitants of Bespin

Here are the denizens of Bespin, from the most recent IA expansion, The Bespin Gambit.

Lando is a great figure. It was fun to do the blue shirt and cape, and to catch his roguish grin. I tried to get that particular golden-green for his cape lining, but I'm not entirely happy with it.
Lando Calrissian


The Wing Guard were quick to paint and visually striking, but I confess I had to do a bit of searching to find out who they were- basically Cloud City security.

Wing Guard
 Ugnaughts are sci-fi munchkins, working behind the scenes to keep Bespin running.

Ugnaughts
I know, I know, I have to finish my Hoth campaign- I promise I will!

Friday, 15 July 2016

Newcastle Brickfest 2016

Last weekend was Newcastle Brickfest. I went to the first one in 2014, and pictures can be seen here. This was at the same location, but had been spread over two days, with ticketed entrance times and a resulting decrease in crowd crush. There was a variety of Lego on display, as well as a few members of the 501st Legion, Southern Cross Garrison.

Large Angry Unikitty

Classic Space- still my favourite.


Let it snow!

Who ya gonna call?

Jinkies!

Dragons vs vikings







Cherry blossom tree

A local school


There were some cool X-Files vignettes:




Star Wars was again popular:




I really liked these Alice in Wonderland vignettes:




The Lego Group doesn't make military themed bits, but there are after-market weapons and helmets available to make dioramas like this one, or the war memorial in the town above:


It's a fun day, and proceeds go to a good cause. Yay, Lego!