The Mad Devil
You may find yourself asking "What is this place?" Well, this page may provide some insight as to how I answer that question.
In 1979 or so, my mother was desperate to distract a rather inquisitive and obnoxious youth aged a ripe six almost seven years. She asked a teenage clerk at a local toy store what might be an appropriate game or toy for such a boy. The clerk, perhaps sensing the DOOM that was at hand, bowed to the dictates that the Fates had decreed and recommended that she acquire a game called Dungeons & Dragons® for the boy. She picked up the blue box basic edition that included B1 In Search of the Unknown and the DOOM was sealed. I have played D&D in its various incarnations ever since.
It started simply with the acquisition of various rule books and modules, but somewhere in the early 80s, a cousin provided three Grenadier Gold Box sets as a Christmas present. These sets included the Wizard's Lab, the Swamp set, and the halfling set. All were produced under the license that TSR gave to Grenadier. It took a while, but eventually I acquired my first few Polly S paints (also produced under a TSR license) (troll flesh, dragon red, and mud I think were my first three pots) and Brian M. helped guide me through my first fumbling efforts. Mostly by showing me how good his miniatures looked and how bad mine were. Later I found out he was not painting his, just sort of painting over/touching what his older brother had already painted. Mike M. was furious when he found out Brian had the temerity to paint Mike's minis.
Fast forward almost thirty years and I am still painting. Sporadically at times, and with the knowledge that this behavior plants me seriously in the nerd side of reality, but I do still paint. Along the way, I remember Justin E. running a campaign at The Rusty Scabbard in Lexington on Woodland Ave. and learning that he was making money painting minis. I also began a serious collection habit by basically buying 1-3 minis every time we gamed. But in response to Justin's teaching, I began my first commercial efforts. I would paint minis for other people in the group in exchange for another mini, a few pots of paint or about five dollars. When I was at Choate, I did not use the mandatory study hours for homework. Instead, I painted. That year was when I painted my first serious box set - the Elven Chariot. My painting was still very rough at this time, but it did improve. By college, my work was above the typical slop and go paint job. The summer of my junior year, I had a lot of spare time since my life guarding job was limited to six hours a day. I painted up a storm. It was probably during this period that I finally began to do a better job of washing, highlighting, dry brushing and the like. Even with an almost manic pace of a miniature every other day, my buying habits continued to outpace my painting and my backlog grew. When D&D hit its third edition, the game returned to its roots as a miniature wargame, and the use of miniatures exploded once more. I also became involved in the Living Greyhawk campaign through the RPGA, and encountered many other mini fans. The market for minis expanded accordingly.
I also had a day time job that paid me enough to indulge in some of my more expensive habits, so I began to acquire DWARVEN FORGE™ sets with which to create dungeons for use with my miniatures. I ran the gaming at Trinoc*Con to great effect with a monstrous dungeon delve called the Sewers of Seneshta. My sets also appeared at Dragoncon 2006 for its dungeon delve.
I have never been a big fan of selling minis I paint. I would much rather someone approach me with a commission. You provide the mini. I paint it according to whatever instructions you provide. If you like it, you pay me. If you don't like it, I buy the mini from you and add it to my collection. People have also come to me asking about minis. Sometimes I have answers, sometimes not so much. However, I usually do have an opinion about the minis I have painted. These various factors lead me to this website. Here is where I can post pictures of my minis, publish reviews providing my opinion about the minis I have painted, and satisfy my exhibitionist side with a pseudo blog that primarily focuses on gaming, minis, and puppies.
June 18, 2008
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