Sunday, June 9, 2013

Dropzone Games 1st Anniversary -- Jumpmaster Painting Competition

Dropzone Games celebrated their 1st Anniversary, and the event was a tremendous success.  They had a great turnout, enough to fill and energize every room in their 13,000 square foot facility!

My goal was to participate in their Jumpmaster Painting Competition and submit a broader representation of my portfolio -- both older and newer stuff that hasn't competed much or at all.  Plus, I like to give exposure to alternative ranges of models as much as I can.

I did bring along Border Dispute, too  --  just for display, though.  There wasn't a category for it to compete in. 

As you can see, the field was very strong for this competition.  There was a matrix of categories, very similar to what I composed for NOVA Open:  Historical, Fantasy, and Sci-fi, matrixed across Single, Large/Vehicle, and Unit.  I entered Fantasy Unit, Sci-fi Unit, Fantasy Single, and Fantasy Large/Vehicle.  You were allowed two entries per category.  My entries are the ones presented on the black display boards/plinths.

Freebooter's Fate Pirate Goblins, Malifaux Ramos faction, Malifaux Bayou Gremlins (on the pre-fab swamp base), Warhammer 40K Eldar Rangers.....

Rangers again, Horders Troll Axer, Red Box Games goblin on bear (Bloodmaw and Horsebane), Reaper Elf Lord, and Reaper Pirate Sharkman.

So here were the standouts that grabbed my attention.

Dire Avengers.  Very clean and poppy.  My photo doesn't show it well, but the gemstones were some of the best I've seen.  Brilliant.  I haven't seen a varnish shine like this one did.

Tau Crisis Suits.  I'm not crazy about the color scheme, but it does show off the different elements of the model very well, and the lining is superb -- very precise, and great accenting for non-weathered models.

Awesome metals and weathering.  Love the salt-stain effect.

Eldar Harlequin.  This girl just started painting a few months ago, I think I heard her boyfriend say.  She's a natural!

Excellent all-around techniques on the Hordes Trollbloods.  This was staff work, I believe, so it wasn't competing (whew!).

I don't recognize this model.  Neat imagery.

This picture doesn't do this paintjob justice.  The fluorescent paints work really well for this style of model.  I'm sure this unit looks fantastic in-game.  The only problem is that the fancy models steal the show from the good work done on the rest of the models.

More by the same artist, I wager.  Again, the pic doesn't do it justice.  This guy knows what he's doing.  You can read in his models the decision-making that's going on in his head for every element of the model and every highlight and color choice.

This paintjob inspired me to finally purchase this model.  Well, that, and the 11%-off weekend special!  Basic but very effective airbrush, followed up expertly with the brush for final touches.  I had the pleasure to meet the artist (another Mike).  He really brings out the character and motion of this model.

Very nice chipping.  I studied this one for a while.  He did a lot of work on the edging of the chipped paint, unless he used a different technique and has me fooled.  If it's edging, that was a lot of work.  But it really paid off.  As a matter of fact, I think he won the plaque for Sci-fi Large/Vehicle.

Classic primary colors.  Proof yet again that the color wheel works, when applied with the right balance.

This pirate was another piece by Mike.  Nice work.  The metals look very natural.  The dark-lining and contrasts are very effective, while still being subtle.  A very good choice for basing, too.  Simple,  color-coordinated, and thematic.

This Eldar figure was one of my favorites.  Partly because I've never seen the model before, and I've never seen an Eldar figure with an instrument!  The style is very clean, which, of course, works well for Eldar.  There were subtle variations in the colors, particularly on the harp, which succeeded in giving a clean miniature more depth and interest.  A simple but very attractive color scheme.  It brings attention to the main features of the model.  And the gems and eye-lenses are fantastic.

So, I am pleased to say that I won the Fantasy Unit category with my Ramos faction (see this blog entry for a close-up), and I won the Fantasy Single category with the Pirate Sharkman!  Very exciting! 

To top off the excitement of the award, special guest-visitor, Andy Chambers, presented the plaques!  As a matter of fact, one of the highlights of the weekend was participating in an intimate Q&A, where I asked questions about Games Workshop business model and waxed geeky on rules design questions about Dust Warfare, Epic, and his new game, Blood Red Skies.  Dropzone will post pics of the awards ceremony, which I'll point to when they're available.

Thanks again to Dropzone for hosting a great event, and the best of luck to them for many years to come.  Happy Birthday, Dropzone!


  1. Congratulations on the wins! Well earned. Thanks for the photos of the event--I always like to see what's going on around the mini world.

  2. Thanks, Sean! I'm glad you liked the gallery. Of course, nothing beats seeing the figures in person, but it sure is nice to have the Internet to, like you say, see the goings-on in the world to which we would otherwise be oblivious. Thanks for commenting!


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