The Capital Palette was good to me this year, with a Silver and a Bronze.
In the couple of weeks leading up, I sunk a lot of time and effort into painting up 1652’s Zurraigo from Tercio Creativo*. I’m quite pleased with how he turned out. He won Silver in the Historical Single Figure category
More and more I’ve been wanting to work with more desaturated, “realistic” colors, and this was right there. I’m happy with how I got colors in there that are bright without being technicolor. I see myself working in this area for the next however long.
I got a lot of comments along the lines of “the one with the smoke coming out of the musket,” which says to me the smoke was too prominent and should have been darker. I painted it to look like musket smoke which is, of course, stupid, because it’s a burning match.
On the first day of NOVA, I scramble-painted a handful of Maquisards. I’d built them before the big move and primed them the night before… and then pretty much just painted them all day Thursday, finishing them just in time to hop in the car and drive to Crystal City for a seminar. They got Bronze in Historical Collection.
I don’t have any illusions: the only reason they won Bronze is because, to my knowledge, there were three entries in that category. They’re not bad: they’re what I’d consider tabletop quality**, but they’re not even close to great.
I’ve got another 67 of these suckers to paint at some point hopefully not too far in the future.
My Iguana (which I keep erroneously insisting is a Salamander) bears mention, having made first cut. First cut is a far cry from placing, but it’s not worth nothing. In a tight field like Sci-Fi Large, to my mind it’s as big an achievement as placing with Historical Collection (if not moreso).
I entered more than these three, of course: I entered my Nomad Spektr, my Nomad Hellcats (who I seem to not have photographed yet), and a D&D character (who is similarly undocumented). None of these made first cut, but that’s a right and just thing: there were so many spectacular other entries and I don’t have any illusions about their level. Really: that’s why I’m so pleased with the Iguana making the cut.
I was frustrated in my attempts to get feedback on my entries (really just looking for it for Zurraigo) from the judges. There’s simply no bandwidth after judging and it’s weird to do before it. I need to figure out the right way to get that advice: this weekend’s seminars were hugely helpful, but I know I’d benefit from some targeted critique, especially from the specific folks I’m trying to impact.
I was also pretty frustrated by the way the awards ceremony went. Basically, they announced the Golds, the end. Then, word went out that if you got a finalist pin, you should gather over by where pictures were being done to find out if you placed in Silver or Bronze. So, we milled about there for a bit before being told to sit down. Then they found the list and rattled off names. I seem to recall that something similar-ish happened last year.
I know the awards ceremony runs long: but this is the second time in a row where it’s felt like they’re just trying to get this part over and done with so they can get on to rambling about how great X-Wing or Malifaux is. And that’s not ego talking (well, maybe 5% ego): in many of cases I have no idea what placed. I know Rhodes’ German officer got Historical Single Gold, but I don’t know who, or what got Bronze. John’s Zugs got Historical Collection Gold, but I have no clue what got Silver; I didn’t even know there was a third entry (I’m not kidding). I don’t know what got Silver in Sci-Fi or Fantasy Single, etc. People names are nice, but when we’re looking in the display cabinet: we’re not seeing those, and it’s kind of tough to guess who painted what (John’s easy, Mike’s I recognized, and I was able to spot Dave’s by way of the Fury Road model, but that was about it). They do this for Gold, but I think they fall short in skipping it for Silver and Bronze. Would it be so difficult to do two slides per category, one with the Gold and then a second one with Silver and Bronze on it?
Also, I’d love the opportunity to go back and give the winners a closer, second/third/thirtieth look. This can’t happen for any number of reasons (not the least of which is that, by the time the ceremony’s over, it’s like 9PM and people need to have collected their entries so they can go home), but I’m allowed to dream, right?
Update: Did the NOVA Survey yesterday, and one of the questions is (basically), “Would you like the ability to meet with judges after the award to discuss entries?” Hell, yeah. This is basically what I really, really want. I never fail to be surprised and impressed by NOVA’s ability and willingness to adapt for the better.
Brief photodump. I’m shocked and appalled that these were all the pictures I took; I suck. Shame on me.
(This was my pick for Fan Favorite.)
* Who sucked ass on fulfilling a Kickstarter and still, two and a half years later, owe me stuff. Screw those jackwagons.
** It’s worth mentioning that, with notably few exceptions (last year’s MacReady and Zurraigo above) every mini I’ve entered has been intended for play. This is probably both why I don’t win first place that often and also why it takes me forever and a half to finish projects.