Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Year in Reflection

By November I had already resigned to not having a hope of making 52... from 3. I love painting, constantly call it one of my favorite hobbies, but started doing LESS after signing up here. It boggled my mind.

After some reflection, I've come to the conclusion that there was a layer here for me I had not considered appropriately; fear.

I wanted to show good work and in my head what meant "good" is WAY better than I can achieve yet. However, my brain would not take "not yet" for an answer and became OCD over the stupidest things. My technique and experience just couldn't support it, and so I failed at it constantly. The prospect of showing that work made it way worse. I was already cringing at the pics I posted, for instance.

I found myself spending so much time and effort trying to get things perfect on each mini in an OCD-rrific manner (and failing to do so anyway), that I ended up just frustrated and *didn't* paint at times I could have. That's not how I operate with anything else, so it was a surprise to me after I realized that was what I was doing.

That had to stop! This year, I embrace the suck! :)

Well, not really. I'm just focused on getting decently painted figures on the table now, and working on one technique at a time for every mini... blending, shadowing, outlining, etc. That way I can still practice the stuff that needs work without stalling everything. No one was going to rip me apart here anyway (I mean, it's not Cool Mini or Not, right?).

Since I made this new year's resolution, I've already busted out 8 new minis! Not mind blowing, but obviously far better than nothing at all. Pictures, of course, are forthcoming.

I mean, they aren't doing me any good in the blister packs, anyway.


  1. I've definitely been there. I gave up painting for a long while because my figs look terrible compared to professionally painted stuff. Since then, I learned a few basic techniques and have learned to paint stuff to my standards, not someone else's.

    In fact, I started this blog precisely because I think CMON is a terrible venue for people who aren't at the high end of things. I don't want to play in the major leagues. I'm happy down here in the minors!

  2. I absolutely can understand that. I often think my stuff is horrid, but I remind myself again that I paint to what I call "Table Standard". In other words, when playing at the Table, it looks ok.

    Don't beat yourself up if it's not perfect.

    Btw, the idea of practicing one technique at a time is a good one. I've got two small armies I'll be working on this year, and focusing on a different technique for each one, as an extended practice and refinement of an individual skill.

  3. Ummm...what they said. ;)

    Seriously, don't stress, man.

    On a good day, my minis are tabletop standard. Works for me.

    We are "52 Minis in 52 Weeks" not "52 Masterpieces in 52 Weeks".

    I look forward to seeing your stuff.


  4. What Tom said.

    And realize that only practice makes you improve. And any practice is better than no practice.

    So, c'mon, paint some. :)

  5. Hell, if I thought I could only put the stuff I really really really thought was good, all of those dipped skeles and other beasties would've never made it up here.

    I can't say that 'we' as the group of bloggers are here to relax, enjoy the hobby and have fun, but that's why I'm here.

  6. Heh, thank you, everyone, for all the kind words. I'm just happy that I snapped out of it and was able to identify my issue. Figured it may help someone else who was thinking the same.

    Your comments, by the way, totally validate my "I mean, it's not Cool Mini or Not, right?" quote. The answer is, "No, it most certainly is not!"


    Now to take some pictures...