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2019 recap

January 2, 2020

2019

Another year gone, what happened in 2019 hobby-wise?

Amazingly 2019 was the first ever year that I kept track of my miniature purchases and the like. Here’s the tally (“miniatures” refers to scenery pieces as well):

Miniatures bought: 62

Miniatures printed: 42

Miniatures sold or given away: 112

Miniatures painted: 57

Larger terrain pieces finished: 4

All in all I’m quite happy with the year. I finished the year with 8 miniatures fewer than I started the year with despite accumulating plenty of new ones. What this means in practice is that I got rid of old stuff that I was never going to paint – mostly WHFB miniatures from 10-15+ years back – and replaced them with miniatures and scenery pieces that are much more likely to be painted.

I painted a grand total of 57 miniatures and scenery pieces. I could have done more, but to be honest this is one of my most productive years in a while. As before, I’m a fairly meticulous painter although I’m slowly learning to be a bit more relaxed, spending less time on areas that won’t be very visible on the miniature. Did you know that when I started out as a teen, I would paint the soles of minis’ feet – despite them getting glued to the base? So..yeah. The end of the year was more than a bit stressful, with loads of work and my father passing away after a long illness, so I’m happy that I still managed to find time for painting. To be honest, painting more and spending less time on Twitter probably would have helped with the stress.

I also experimented with some new painting techniques. Nothing drastic, I just wanted to push my painting a little. While I’m happy with my painting, I feel like I’ve been somewhat stuck for the past few years. I’m currently learning to work with thinner paints and washes a bit more than previously. Who knows, maybe I’ll even try a white or grey undercoat one of these days. It’s only been 15 years since the last time!

On the project front, it’s amazingly enough still pirates. Seriously, this has been pretty much my only project since 2015, and I’m still enthusiastic about it. I do paint the occasional RPG miniature, and we did paint some Battletech pieces which I should show in a future post! Still, it’s mostly pirates and other 17th/18th century types.

The biggest change in my hobby in 2019 was the introduction of 3d printing. I had always looked down on it a bit: layer lines from FDM machines were ugly, resin printers too expensive. Basically, I had locked my opinions in around 2015. However, when I started looking into it, I realized that times had indeed changed, progress had been made (quelle surprise!) and people were producing some wonderful pieces on their printers. My enthusiasm sparked, I bought an Anycubic Photon which turned out to be a great idea. Before I knew it, I was down the 3d printing rabbit hole. It wasn’t too long before I found myself wanting something a bit bigger for printing terrain, but surely an FDM printer would be too…yeah I bought one. As of December 23 2019, I’m a proud owner of a Lotmaxx SC-10 printer as well. It’s been running pretty much non-stop since then, and I’ll show some of the results in a later post.

The 3d printing stuff has brought a feeling of novelty to the hobby that I realized I’ve been missing a bit. There’s something in the tinkering and tweaking that makes me happy, as well as the possibilities afforded by new technology. All of a sudden all sorts of weird and wonderful things are within my reach – I can print my own ships, buildings and sea monsters, how cool is that?

Last but not least, I got to combine work and play in a fun way. As you might know, I’m a games researcher at Tampere University, and we had the wonderful idea of doing some research on miniaturing. More on that later as well – I’m actually about to become a published research on the miniaturing pastime. How cool is that!

For the past x years this blog has been going on fairly sporadically. I post far less than I used to, and sometimes there are long (, long, long) gaps between posts. I’m hoping to remedy this a bit this year! The blog isn’t going anywhere and I’m still quite motivated about it and a huge thank you for that is in order to the regular group of readers and commenters – you know who you are!

2020I’m not usually one for new year’s resolutions, but on the hobby front a few are in order. So, in 2020 I want to:

  • Blog at least once per week two weeks
  • Paint at least 100 miniatures and scenery pieces
  • Get rid of at least 50 miniatures I don’t have a use for
  • Complete at least one major model or terrain piece
  • Learn at least one new painting technique
  • Give something back to the miniaturing community
  • Get at least a few games in
  • Learn to master my printers

These should take my hobby in the direction I want it to go: more activity, interaction with the community and honing my own skills.

Here’s to another year of hobby goodness, stay tuned and my sincere thanks for stopping by!

12 comments

  1. Sounds like you had a very productive year! I’m fascinated by 3D printers but I’m not at all interested in all the technical stuff and tinkering that is involved… so I’ll pass for the time being. I had a friend print something for me though.
    And keep us posted on your academic work on miniaturing, I’m very interested in that!

    Liked by 2 people


    • I’ll definitely do that πŸ™‚ I was initially a little averse to 3d printing because of the tinkering, but all of a sudden I find myself enjoying it! What is this madness…

      Liked by 1 person


  2. Sounds like a busy year, both minis-wise and real life! I thin you’ll find that just by blogging here you’re already giving something back to the miniaturing community! Carry on! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people


    • Thanks John, that’s nice to hear. Maybe I’ll put together a tutorial or two for some extra usefulness!

      Liked by 2 people


  3. Nice work being in the red this year! It is interesting how you can drift away from interest in items of your collection but hold onto them for a long…long time. I quite like your resolutions….I’ve been pondering my own and might be ‘inspired’ by some of yours.

    Liked by 2 people


    • Thanks Dave! Indeed, minis do accumulate and there’s a strong element of “I might need this/come back to this/use this for something”, which leads to storing stuff for ages. And not just miniatures, but bits and even simply trash. I just threw out a bag of old deodorant bottle caps, foam offcuts and the like some years ago even though, you know, I might need them one day.

      Liked by 1 person


  4. That balance sheet of painted versus acquired is enviable.

    Happy New Year Mikko!

    Liked by 2 people


    • Thanks Paul, it’s still a whole lot of surplus, but it is far better than some years. Happy new year to you too!

      Liked by 2 people


  5. Hah, exactly the same number of minis as I did! πŸ™‚ It had been a joy to follow your hobbying during 2019, especially the 3D printing. I’ve had pretty much the same prejudices towards printing as you did, so it’s been cool to see your comparisons and to notice that they’re indeed a bit out of date. This year I might get a couple of 3D printed models as my brother has an FDM printer, just have to send him a list of things to print!

    Anyway, looking forward to seeing how you manage those hobby challenges (100 minis sounds like a lot!), and especially reading your research paper!

    Liked by 2 people


    • Thanks for the comment! 100 minis does sound like a lot, but then again should be doable, we’ll see. There will definitely be plenty of 3D printing stuff on the blog in the future, knowing myself…

      Liked by 1 person


  6. First, condolences on the loss of your Dad, Mikko.

    On the 2019 accomplishments very cool and love the stuff you shared.

    More pirates!

    As for 3D printing, very much where you used to be. Though until I diminish my lead mountain and the deodorant caps, etc. (yup me too) I won’t be doing that (will live vicariously through you).

    Nice goals – will look forward to your bimonthly posts!

    Liked by 1 person


    • Thanks Mark! I’ll do my best to provide suitable vicarious experiences πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person



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