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Five Years Old Today

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I try to avoid writing posts without new miniature content, but I figure that five years is a genuine milestone.

WordPress just informed me that today is the fifth anniversary of the day that I started this stupidly named blog.  I originally intended to use it as a dummy blog to feel my way around and then start a “proper” one with a “proper” name later (I really wish that I had called it “Scale Creep”, then I could be “Mr. Scale Creep” or “The Creep”) but you can see how well that worked.  Suffice it to say that I got a bit better at blogging eventually regardless.

Ballpark I have documented about 600-800 miniatures here since I started.  I must check the total sometime, but as the mission statement was to document my hobby output, then it has been a success.  In fact, blogging about the hobby has caused both the quality and quantity of my miniature output to increase in addition to all sorts of other unexpected benefits (reduced ageing, ESP, that sort of thing).  Go Scale Creep!

Genuine thanks to anyone who has ever taken the time to comment on my tiny corner of the miniature world.

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39 Responses

  1. Congrats! That’s a fair old vintage for a blog.

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    • Thanks Mr S.

      Is it a notable length of time for a blog to be running? I hadnt really considered that, there are so many around that its hard to keep track of even the brilliant ones that I desperately want to keep up with.

      It took a while to get going, but I am quite happy with where it is at now. PLENTY of room for improvement of course, like that poxy banner for starters.

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  2. Huzzah! Here’s to 5 more years and the 600 – 800 painted minis that come with them. 🙂

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    • Thanks Seán. You properly mounting the blogging horse over the last year or so has made this side of the hobby extra enjoyable for me 🙂

      I suggest that we keep at it into our dotage. I dont have a backup plan anyway.

      Im aiming for 150 miniatures a year with more than that (like last year) being a bonus. Helga is my 54th painted miniature in so far in 2014 (not counting 90% of the jungle stuff, which although time consuming was assembly and the occasional repaint rather than “proper” painting) so Im fairly on target.

      So another 750 miniatures is the target for the 2019 anniversary. Talk to you then 😉

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  3. Congratulations! I need to work my way through all your archive at some point.

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    • Thanks very much Subedai. As I mentioned in a group reply yesterday, I politely suggest that you work backwards rather than starting at the beginning: you should get more bang for your valuable blog reading time that way.

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  4. Well done and keep it going.

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  5. Congratulations! I can’t work out whether I’m more impressed with the 5 year birthday or the total output (my projected coverage of figures would be about 125 based on my year 1 stats!)

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    • Thanks axiom. My “miniatures in” value is still shameful in comparison with the “miniatures out”, but at least there is substantial movement. I actually think that I found a personal sweet spot for balancing time spent with quality of finish last year, which invigorated me and encouraged further output.

      There are very many people painting better and faster out there, but I have found that this level seems to suit me in many ways: I get more satisfaction from painting now than I did when I spent more time painting each model and in some ways the finish is better because of it anyway.

      Im still always on the look out for ways to increase speed though. Im turning 40 next year and I am considering doing sort of speed painting course at Golem or similar as a treat. Some in-person pointers from pros could show me all sorts of short cuts I expect. Loads to learn yet 🙂

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  6. Congratulations. This blog is one of my faveorites. Keep it coming! 🙂

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    • Very kind Danny, thanks. The remit here is relatively narrow, so plenty more of the same/similar to come. Not so similar as to be boring I hope, but almost certainly 28mm sci-fi by and large.

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  7. Thanks for the kind words guys 🙂

    A few reflective points:

    1) five years is a significant chunk of time in this context I suppose. It took me a while to get a grip on what I was trying to do. Additionally, the early posts occurred at a time when I was going through a minimalist phase in painting in order to improve quantity of output. I also had a lot more trouble with photography than I do now (and Im still not happy with that).

    So most of those pieces/posts/photos over the first year or two really were not of terribly high quality: they look a lot like a beginner painters work, even though I have been painting to a higher standard than that since the early nineties. Paring back the processes and relearning some of the painting approaches subsequently taught me a lot of things, but the first year or two of the blog look disproportionately rough.

    So Subedai, if you do have a quiet afternoon at work and decide to poke through the older stuff, then I humbly suggest that you work backwards from the present rather than go to the start and work forward.

    2) I took a break of six weeks or so once due to personal reasons, but its been pretty consistent other than that: about a hundred posts a year. As at least 95% of the posts include newly painted miniatures or terrain rather than filler/placeholder pieces, thats pretty healthy, modesty aside for a moment.

    2) The Mission Statement in on the “About” page is important to me. A goal of my blogging is to get proper data on my actual output and to determine what sort of projects stall and what sort of projects blossom. The blogging process has also made me far more productive in addition to helping to make contacts with other enthusiasts like you guys. The time and effort put in here, warts and all, has proven to be galvanising. I get more out that I put in.

    3) 2013 was my most productive hobby year ever, with just below 200 miniatures painted mostly to a pretty decent standard. The miniatures themselves may not be to everyones tastes for various reasons, but if you had told me when I started blogging that I would have that much output at that quality I would have been chuffed. Im still chuffed that thats where I am at really 🙂

    https://sho3box.wordpress.com/2014/01/03/2013-192-painted-miniatures/

    Again, thanks for the encouragement.

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  8. Congratulations. Being new to the whole blogging thing myself I am impressed both by the long time you maintained your blog and the output it stimulated. Inspiring indeed.

    Do you find it is also valueable to go back a couple of months an see the exact paints you used for a miniature? I might get old, but I can never remember how I did things after a couple months, so in addition to the benefits you already mentioned I could see that you also have a good database of how you did stuff years ago.

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    • Thanks daggerandbrush. The photography on your blog puts my clumsy efforts to shame. I really must up my game in that regard.

      I record how I paint each miniature as I paint it. I use a small notebook in my painting area. I occasionally forget to document a stage (it regularly happens at the end of the process as my enthusiasm for finishing the model overrides my administrative dogma) but I am quite successful at keeping a record overall.

      I find the notebooks to be a hugely helpful record. It also surprises me to see how I approach painting various things differently as the years go by, as I barely noticed the changes happen. The records also help because I jump from project to project a bit to avoid burnout, so often I end up trying to repeat a colour scheme several years old, which I have forgotten.

      Like the blog, the aim of the painting notebooks is to provide data. Confronting data is definitely a good way to improve. I regard painting records to be essential. The better organised I am, the better output I end up with.

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  9. Happy birthday! keep up the good work 🙂

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    • Thanks Jason. I still have those cat miniatures to trade that we discussed last year, if you still want them 🙂

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      • Yes please, I am extremely busy at the moment with new baby stuff but manage to sneak 1/2 hour of internet and 1/2 hour of painting each night, I might not get a chance to check all blog comment replies, feel free to email me on fuljason@gmail.com any time for a chat, I am sure I can return the favour with something nice for you 🙂
        J

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  10. Congratulations!

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  11. Congratulations, that’s a very nice achievement! I’ve been a follower for ages, and this sort of feels like a “sister blog” to mine. It’s a near-endless source of ideas, techniques and inspiration, and our interests tend to go pretty much hand in hand. Keep the ball rolling, your new updates tend to make my pre-work blog browsing routine that much more enjoyable!

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    • Thanks MIkko. I think that we started blogging within a day or two of each other and both with an early emphasis on the various zombie related things that we were working on at the time, so there has always been that connection I think.

      Im looking forward to meeting for realz in 2015 🙂

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  12. Congrats for 5 years of constant very good output.

    It is true blogging tends to help both quality and quantity for some of us. What I love about your blog is how you’ve determined a path towards where you want to go and how you take sidetracks but always end up with a coherent work. Really inspirational.

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    • Thank you JB, Im glad that you get something out if my stuff.

      Keeping the focus squarely on toy soldiers and terrain works for me, but not everyone. I try to keep the post content in line with what I want to read in other blogs, rather than what I might want to write about, if you see what I mean. I want to see painted miniatures and terrain that inspires me to do more, so I try to do something similar myself.

      There isnt a right way or wrong way, but this approach works for me.

      Regarding coherency, I am quite rigid about limiting my palettes/colour schemes. That allows me to use miniatures from multiple sources while still ending up with a reasonably visually coherent groups. My space dwarfs and in particular my orks are decent examples of that I think.

      Limiting the palette heavily can make scruffy types like orks or pirates (or pirate orks) look a little less individualistic and therefore a little less fun, but it helps productivity immensely. Turnover is king for me.

      A very big inspiration for me is Matakishi.com. Matakishi not only has huge turnover in terms of miniatures, but his ability to take on a project and see it right through is second to none.

      I have noted that a lot of GW enthusiasts – even the Oldhammer variety – seem to be unaware of his work (I assume because he doesnt play GW games, although he uses miniatures from anywhere) so if you havent had a poke around Matakishi.com before then you really owe it to yourself to do it.

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  13. Nice one!
    I wish I could be half as productive!

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    • Thanks Donogh!

      Its all about routine for me, doing just a little bit every day makes all the difference. Its like exercise.

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  14. Congratulations! I’m going on nine years myself, but I’ll admit I post pretty unevenly. Keeping a blog has definitely helped motivate both my output, and my skills progression, and I hope yours has too 🙂

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    • Nine years!? Thats right at the bleeding edge of blogging No Such Agency. Kudos to your early adoption.

      I have found the same as you regarding blogging: it has been a great catalyst for the rest of the hobby. Still loads to do and learn though 🙂

      Thanks!

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  15. Congratulations! I hope I can be half as productive, helpful, and inspirational as you have been.

    Thanks!

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    • Thanks Maj. Guiscard. Without exaggeration, your blog has made me look at my whole collection in a new light. Thank you for that 🙂

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  16. Congrats on 5 years! I love seeing the work that you do on these. Keep them coming, Mr. Creep!

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  17. Congratulations! Wow, you can truly call youself a veteran! I love all your production, attention to details and inventiveness!! Keep on!

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    • Thanks Suber. Our miniature interests overlap quite a bit, so I should be able to generate a few more things that entertain for a while yet I hope.

      Like

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