I thought I would take the chance to catch up with a few things in what’s been a busy week.
First, I noticed on Monday that the “followers” counter on this blog had ticked around to 100. And kept on ticking round to 110 during this week. And then the Visitor counter clicked around to 25,000...
WOW! I don’t know what to say apart from a very sincere, very warm and huge THANK YOU and WELCOME to everyone who has followed, old and new, commented or just read this Blog. I’ve really enjoyed making it. It’s been a focus for my hobby activities whether painting modelling or researching, it’s kept me working to a plan (however vague) and it’s enabled me to get in touch with so many friends all over the world. Your comments have really inspired me, just as much as the work on your own blogs has shown me the way to go. And above all, the sense of community has really widened the scope of my hobby, and for all of that, again, thank you!
And for anyone reading this who may be thinking about starting a blog, may I point you to the post which inspired me to start. It’s on Col Corbaine’s wonderful blog, and it’s a very simple message. I hope that Mel won’t mind me re-posting that part of his blogpost here, as it was the spark which lit the blue touch-paper for this blog:
“But my stuff ain't good enough ....
Don't ever, ever, ever think that, and if you do, I'll give you a cyber smack around the head. The hobby is about the journey and it doesn't matter what aspect of the hobby it is, we all have something to learn and something to share. Also, remember blogging is actually a two way thing, we've got a great supportive community going, so if you don't think your stuff is good, just ask how you can improve it, the community will be only too glad to help.”
I simply can’t improve on that, and won’t even try. Thank you Mel, and thanks again everyone!
Stylish Blogger Award
I have also been nominated for the Stylish Blogger Award by a three great bloggers – Ashley, Big Lee and Airhead. They each have awesome blogs which have certainly inspired me. I was really chuffed to be nominated. I think the “Stylish Blogger” wave across the Blogosphere has probably calmed a bit during May, but I felt bad not reciprocating and joining in - so I waited until I had a few things to say thanks for.
Ashley is a wonderful lady who met me and the other TooFatLardies crew at Salute and spent an afternoon with “Jebediah in the Valley”, our Terrible Sharp Sword participation game. Her blog, Paint it Pink, is a wonderful meandering journey though wargaming, boardgames and RPGs.
Big Lee needs no introduction. Although we’ve never met (hey, fancy a beer at a show, mate?) his blog is tribute to a true wargamer, dedicated, eclectic, wide-ranging and brimming with energy. Above all, I love the snippets from the past which turn up from time to time – photos from the 70s and 80s, a childhood and mis-spent youth which looks a lot like mine.
Airhead’s nomination was deeply flattering from someone who is himself a wonderful terrain builder. He’s a natural scratch-builder and scavenger, and another of those people who inspire me to try something new.
OK....so, I understand that I now need to share 7 things about myself which you don’t know and select a few blogs who you think deserve the award as well. Here goes:
1. As a number of other people posting on lists like this have similarly mentioned, my two best miniatures are my two children, Eleanor and William. Ahhhhhhh. Both of them are currently being apprenticed in the art of terrain making – which usually means making a terrific mess in the garage.
2. It took me significantly longer to paint a small 28mm wooden hut last year than to paint my garden shed the following day.
3. My earliest memory of wargaming with rules (rather than marbles) was at the school wargames club in a game set in the American Civil War using painted Airfix figures. My first RPG session was The Village of Hommlet. OK, hands up those of you who’ve played in that module ...... hmmm, quite a few!
4. One of my favourite wargaming stories involves a great friend from the Humberside club, Keith Gendle, who once painted a 15mm Napoleonic French army for a tournament an hour before starting playing using a car spray from Halfords. Apparently, the figures were still tacky as they moved around the table....
5. One of my first dates with my lovely wife was to take her to Flodden Field on a freezing February day when the ground was as hard as cast iron and the wind cut you in half as you walked up Branxton Hill. I knew she was a keeper at that point.
6. I have occasionally used hobby brushes for DIY decorating in the house (around coving, ceiling roses, window frames). The smallest I have used is a size “1”. My wife thinks I am mad.
7. Peter Greenaway’s wonderful film, “The Draftsman’s Contract”, was solely responsible for me starting to collect armies for the Nine Years War in 1988. I’m planning to get the Williamites and French armies out for a game later this year when my chum, Richard Clarke, has finished work on his ECW rules – “In the Buff”.
Ok, now to the fun part, nominating the blogs I enjoy reading. In no particular order, and with a very brief explanation of why, I hereby nominate:
A Gentleman's Ones – a wonderful blog by a man with phenomenal modelling and terrain skills and a whole heap of energy. I only wish Chicago was a lot nearer.
Porky’s Expanse: an expanse of gaming links, intersections and ideas, and a veritable beating heart of games design.
The Mad Padre – Mike Petersen’s non-wargaming site. Thoughtful, incisive, subtle and well worth reading whatever your religious views.
My Lardy Games – Benito’s fantastic archive of TooFatLardies’ game reports and very generous archive of game material.
News from the Front – some great modelling and games from the architect of the awesome "Die Rattenkeller"
Tears of Envy – eclectic, wacky and visual, Tears of Envy’s mesmerising graphic art and photos site. And another person who clearly enjoys being in London!
Sadoukad 16 - Colonel Hessler’s great site showing how far you can take the Imperial Guard (40K, not the chaps with the golden eagles)
Captain Richard's Miniature Civil War – The Captain’s site is a wonderful treasure trove of ACW goodness. The night-time and illuminated photos are wonderful, but the best photos are of his games room and in particular of his very fine tribute to his relatives who served in World War 2
Dinium's Loft – another of those wonderful jewels of a blog out there. Quiet, dignified, understated and full of incredible painting. Almost solely responsible for me wanting to start a collection for the Franco-Prussian War and Paris Commune.
Don't Roll a One – one of Gravesend’s finest, a blog which always informs and makes me smile, with some fantastic terrain and modelling on display.
Well, there we have it. My Stylish Blogger duties completed, I thought I'd share some of my favourite images from the Blog so far...