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  • Wamp Review: MDP's The Old Gnome

    Old-Gnome-WM-500x500.jpgWar Griffon Miniatures is a range of miniatures produced by Model Display Products which is owned by WAMPís very own Martyn ďThe Welsh WizardĒ Dorey (aka Wargriffon).

    WGM has an eclectic range of miniatures which include some 54mm fantasy figures sculpted by Steve Buddle and Rob Lane and some Busts and larger scale miniatures from various sculptors. The Old Gnome was, I think the first bust WGM produced.

    Now, I have a little history with this guy as it was me who first spotted the sculpt and introduced Martyn to it and Iím bloody glad I did because I wanted to paint it as soon as I saw it. It took a while for Martyn to procure it and get it into production but finally I managed to get my eager hands on it and having seen the superb boxart painted by Adrian Hopwood (The Basement) I had already planned what I was going to do to mine which included a small conversion.

    Old-Gnome-WM5-500x500.jpgThe Old Gnome is cast in grey polyurethane resin to a very high standard. There are a few mould lines but like all resin miniatures a few scrapes with a sharp craft knife and theyíre history. The bust comes in three parts, the main Body with a separate right forearm and separate pipe. If youíre going to paint this as is intended then it might be better to attach the pipe to the forearm and keep them separate from the main torso until painted.

    One of the areas where I had to be careful, while prepping the bust, was behind his left ear because there was a slight rough area here but a small file then some 600grit wet and dry soon sorted that out.

    The main thing about this is the amount of work that has gone into the sculpting. Raul has managed to give the Old Gnome a ton of character as well as lots of details which could be quite daunting to the beginner but donít let that put you off. The segments of cloth that make up his hat all have different textures sculpted into them. The chips in his nails show heís hard working and this can also be seen in not only his demeanour but also the worn clothing, rangy arm and an almost knowing, understanding look on his face. It really is something to behold. One of my favourite things is all the stitching that shows his clothes are old and have been mended many times. Also the small stone that is tied to his hat to weigh the tip down

    17.jpgMy Conversion
    I knew I was getting a copy of the bust and I also knew I wanted to do a conversion to it but what to do? Well, while I was at my Dads wedding last year it came to me. On the table, as part of the wedding feast decorations where these small plastic jewels. I still hadnít managed to meet up with Martyn to grab the bust so I wasnít sure of the size of gem I needed so I went around and like a thief, and much to my partnerís and families shame, grabbed a load of them from various tables.
    When the bust finally arrived it was a pretty simple conversion to do. Firstly I chopped the end of the pipe off then drilled and inserted a thin wire. I then drilled into the corner of his mouth and glued the pipe into place. Next with a small amount of magic sculpt I added a raised bit of lip that covered the new joint. The next part was even easier. I just choose a gem that sat into The Old Gnomes hand well, drilled into it and the palm of his hand and fitted the gem.

    Painting
    The style of this kind of sculpt and the sheer amount of detail lets the painter be a bit more free, but like all larger scale miniature you have to be a lot more accurate and smoother with your blends than you do when painting smaller scale stuff. Like always I started off painting the eyes then moved on to painting his skin tones as there are some hard to reach area around the inside of the shirt collar. Look carefully for the skin blemishes and make sure you paint them as moles and signs of ageing.

    After I finished the skin areas I moved onto his waistcoat, shirt and hat then the gem. The last thing to paint are the small details such as all the stitching and the stone hat weight.
    This guy took me just over a month to paint and I really enjoyed every part of the process. I entered him into WAMP2012 and was pleased to win Silver with him. I will go back and redo the gem as itís the only area Iím not happy with and it was also picked up in the judging so it needs a bit of re-working as I plan on entering him into another contest early next year.

    MDP_The-Old-Gnome.png

    Ratings

    Quality: excellent sculpting and casting. One or two mould lines to deal with but working at this scale in resin is a pleasure.

    Assembly: a testament to the skill of Raul Fernandez Romo the separate parts fit together brilliantly. Because of this it made my conversion much easier. Without converting, no pinning is needed what-so-ever and all the mouldlines are easy to reach and remove.

    Value for Money: I could easily see this bust selling for a lot more money if it was produced by a company with a much higher profile. MDP has done a sterling job of bringing an excellent sculpt to the market at a very good price.

    Overall: The Old Gnome is my favourite bust to date and I wouldnít hesitate to paint again which I canít say about many of the other miniatures I have painted. If you havenít got one then I have one question for you. Why? It really is that good.
    Comments 1 Comment
    1. Darklord's Avatar
      Darklord -
      great review of an excellent product. Well worth buying