Thunderboats v. 2.0: Painting the Pickleforks are hard

I really enjoyed painting the 1950’s and 60’s hydroplanes for our Thunderboats! games.  I’ve painted 23 of the 1/72ndish scale boats cast by Sean McEvoy for the game.  I found them to be a joy to take on.  Mostly blocks of color with some numbers and lettering and often a symbol or emblem to paint.  Kind of like painting HYW heraldry only a little easier.

But as I move on to paint those 70’s boats, they are definitely different. The new hulls with the picklefork noses are larger-longer and broader-as they become a bit more stable and safe after the carnage of the middle 60’s. The wider hulls sit deeper in the water, so almost all the detail on the boats are now on the decking.

Not only that, but the paint schemes of the 60’s definitely change during the 70’s.  Instead of the nice block styles, the paint schemes are linear and colorful.  Often lines run the entire deck, and boats like the Pay ‘N Pak have their name in huge multi-colored lettering along the entire deck.

The 1979 Squire Shop and the 1968 Miss Bardahl in the Smyth boatyard.  Not far on either yet, and both will take lots of extra TLC.

The 1979 Squire Shop and the 1968 Miss Bardahl in the Smyth boatyard. Not far on either yet, and both will take lots of extra TLC.

No big deal for a graphics designer working 1:1, a bit more of a challenge for an old blind guy like me working at 1:72.

1981_U-2_The_Squire_Shop_Hull_7902_

Both of the above pictures are of the 1979 Squire Shop.  In a year that was swept by Bill Muncey's Atlas Van Lines, a very young Chip Hanauer drove the Squire to victory in the Seafair Race.  It is a beautiful boat with striking, hard-to-paint markings.

Both of the above pictures are of the 1979 Squire Shop. In a year that was swept by Bill Muncey’s Atlas Van Lines, a very young Chip Hanauer drove the Squire to victory in the Seafair Race. It is a beautiful boat with striking, hard-to-paint markings.

The first boat I’m painting is one of my favorites, The Squire Shop from 1979.  As you can see, the boat has some nice red and mahogany (I’m using both colors from Vallejo,) but it’s also a plethora of white lines, that have to show up against that background and remain pretty straight.  There is a Squire Shop emblem and then an Olde English font.  I’ve been working away at it as you can see, and probably have a couple of hours into the cab forward hydroplane.

MissBardahl1968bow

If I was going to imagine a boat guaranteed to make me tear my hair out, it would probably look like this.  But it is somethin'.

If I was going to imagine a boat guaranteed to make me tear my hair out, it would probably look like this. But it is somethin’.

The next boat I’ll take on is the 1968 Miss Bardahl.  Slight change in hull design from the classics, but not the picklefork hull. Again, there is the more daring graphics, a departure from the block coloring and lettering.  Not quite sure how I’ll paint the checks all over, but I’m certainly excited to give it a try.

I’ll keep you posted.

What’s On My Painting Table?

I know the picture is dark, but hopefully you can see the minis are coming along. Perry Miniatures Volunteers of Ireland.

I know the picture is dark, but hopefully you can see the minis are coming along. Perry Miniatures Volunteers of Ireland.

Well, hydroplanes of course.  Yes, you’re right, I do have issues with painting ADHD, so I usually have something else going on as well, and it is those same Perry Volunteers of Ireland.  I’m making progress, and hoping to maybe even finish painting the sixteen figures tonight.  They’ve gone fairly quickly, but are not without challenges.  The Brandenburg lace is a bit hard to see, and these figures feel smaller than my other Perry AWI figures, almost as small as the Fife and Drum British guards I painted a while back.

Even so, the painting has gone pretty smoothly. The lace wasn’t horrific to paint except for the silver on the officers.  There won’t be a lot to highlight.  Looks like I won’t finish tonight but after a super painting day, they are at least close.

And For Your Listening Pleasure

I’ve always liked the idea of The Pretenders, and have a copy of their 1994 CD Last of the Independents.  But I’ve never really had a chance to give a good listen to the music that made them famous.  I picked up a copy of their first record, titled simply The Pretenders and gave it a good listen.

It’s a solid record steeped in new wave, punk and solid pop music.  With semi-autographical lyrics by frontman Chryssie Hynde, it blends some great musicianship with snarling vocals.  There is a solid cover of the Kinks hit, “Stop Your Sobbing,” and “Brass in Pocket” became a big MTV hit. My favorite song, however is “Kids” which combines some snarling guitar with some wise and prescient words about the loss of privacy that comes with celebrity.  There is some anger on this record and there is some introspection, but most of all it’s a collection of excellent, pointed songs that represents some of the best of its era.

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