You can now follow me on Instagram

You can now follow me on Instagram

That’s right, I’m now on Instagram! If you want to see more miniature photography you can follow me on my Instagram BjornStormcast.

I’ve even made my new profile artwork for my Intagram.

It’s very early days but I’m sure it’ll grow just like the blog has.

Until next time,

-Bjorn

I’m back……

Yup, after two weeks of silence (of sorts) from blogging I’ve returned to posting the usual.

What happened?

Well things just got out of control for me due to several things that made me stop posting. I needed a break away from blogging to take a refresh and take a break. Constantly doing the repetitive cycle of making posts can fell daunting, it does get to you eventually.

So taking a step back and focus on editing drafts now and again was good change for me, as I had more time to get blog posts written up that I wouldn’t usually have time for.

Other reasons for my absence was due to the fact that I wanted to go outside more. After staying inside with barely much exercise going outside has made me uninspired and lacking the fresh air needed to think clearly. When the lockdown restriction on exercise was changed to unlimited in the U.K., that was when I wanted to do more outdoor exercise (following government guidelines).

None of my friends have contacted me during the pandemic. A few haven’t really contacted me much in months or years, last we saw each other was at P16 (these guys I don’t blame as we’ve quite far apart from each other today with our own lives). But my only contact with a friend who lives near me (or was a regular contact from time to time) has not said a word to me. I won’t go into details on the complexity of our friendship, but let’s just say I’ve been let down so many times (and at one time being tricked despite my feelings being very clear on the matter) that I don’t care about him anymore.

I feel like this pandemic has given me time to reflect on things like friendship. It’s made me realise that I need to move on and find new friends that are my equals. I’m at the age now where I’m not bound by those that I call friends that want to shape me as their biased agenda or opinions. I’ve grown to see that I can be capable of being a better person without being put down, feeling below said persons ego and having to be reminded of my emotional faults when said person can break said rule for themselves.

I need people that I and they can see as equals who I don’t need to agree with, but respect them for their individual opinions and decisions.

Roboute Guilliman, art project

You thought I would forget Lorgar’s arch nemesis? Well, I did just that earlier than expected, it’s a nice picture that I’ll be using as my new profile picture.

At first I wanted to draw Rogal Dorn, but I found the drawing to be less like Dorn and more like Guilliman. So I went for a stoic Guilliman in uniform. Can you guess which famous actor I’ve picked as a visual reference for drawing Roboute?

That’s all for today, until next time,

-Bjorn

Lorgar, Bearer of the Word: Art project

The other day I wanted to do some drawing, so I got out my sketchbook out and started planning what I wanted to draw. After my test drawing of Perturabo using a reference photo impressed me, I wanted to do something similar for this drawing.

I wanted to draw Lorgar, inspired by ADB Horus Heresy book, Betrayer, which I finished reading a few days ago. Hating Lorgar more than ever, I wanted to create a very powerful, wise, prideful and twisted imagery of the Primarch.

To start off, I went and searched for a reference image of who I wanted to base the XVIIth Primarch on. When I read Lorgar’s words, I imagine Richard E Grant playing as the character for his soft high gothic voice, with a twist of sharpness when the monster within is unleashed.

What better reference picture than one of Richards roles that I first saw him in when I was a kid, The little Vampire. I can’t show the image on here, but it’s a good reference picture of him smiling sinisterly with his Vampire costume and makeup. I’ve also got some reference photos of Lorgar, one from his Primarch book and another one in full chaos mode (I think it’s the same artist who did Chapter Master Valrak’s YouTube profile picture?).

Rather than using a pencil, I used a red pencil when outlining and shading the portrait, something I haven’t tried out before until now. As they say in Art College, try something new and out of your comfort zone.

Using a red pencil/crayon, I’ve noticed it was a lot more smoother to shade the picture. With a chalk tip/graphite pencil I tend to get too rough on the shading and outlining.
Once the sketch is complete, I did some photo editing to make it sharper, brighter and filtered in B&W. But wait, the face doesn’t look right…….I keep thinking I’ve accidentally drawn Gav Thorpe, despite the fact I’ve used a reference photo of Richard E Grant.

Now for the digital art stage! With the photo ready, importing it into Procreate art app to be put through layers of colour and editing. I tend to add separate layers for different areas like for example Skin, eyes, armour, background, added effects and tonal change.

Already Lorgar looks as bright as a neutron star about to explode, just like Monarchia……..
He’s even got a nice scar left by Corax after their clash on Istvaan V, a mark of prowess or shame, who could say?

After the painting stages are done, it’s back to the photo editing with light balance and another filter. We need to make Lorgar look his best, so a really dark and morbid tone should suit his ‘killing smile’.

Some may not like it too dark, me, for this art subject in particular, it’s justifiable. #RIPArgalTal #FErebus

Finally, I wanted to add one final effect before it goes into its final piece stage. Adding some nebula glow to represent the almost otherworldly aspect to Lorgar’s deep descent into Chaos.

With that done, what’s the message in my art work and what inspired me.

Artwork’s message and meaning

Art is subject and everyone has their take on the subject in question, so don’t let my words be the final judgment on your views.

I wanted the picture to represent Lorgar as the serpent, the smiling demigod who’s pulling the threads of many plans and religious founding during his zealous crusade in the Horus Heresy. I’ve noticed in many official and fan artworks how Lorgar doesn’t smile, despite the fact that he smiles a little bit too much.

Once, he was the runt of the herd whom no one respected or even acknowledged, even to his own brothers of demigods. But after all the events that transpired leading up towards the Heresy, we get to see Lorgar at the height of his power, and his greatest weaknesses open to be exploited by the Chaos Pantheon.

My artwork was set with one goal in mind for my target audience, and that is for them to hate it. Why? Because what your seeing is no mere victim or a misguided demigod seeking the truth, what your seeing is the truth. Chaos corrupts all it touches, even best intentions for good can be set for a pathway to damnation. Lorgar is an example of someone who plays the victim and expects people to see his point of view because he saw the “truth”, how the Emperor is nothing but a false god along with the Imperium that he created.

But that’s his excuse. He knew the cost of his actions when he sent Argal Tal and his chapter into hells gate, he knew what the Heresy would result in, he knew Guilliman would seek his head for the burning of Calth as he was about to play victim to the XIIIth Primarch. He means good intentions, but only to himself, if he ever cared for his sons and the rest of humanity, he would’ve searched deep within himself and be more self assertive. But because he needs to worship something greater than himself, he can never question himself.

Even a demigod like Lorgar can be manipulated by mortals like Erebus and Kor Pharon, who use Lorgar to their own agendas because he cannot see his own faults to know he’s being used. Or are we the reader being fooled? Lorgar for all we know is playing victim to his own sons, letting them think he’s too dependable on others to be guided. But in truth, he’s using them in such a way where he can see what their motives are, who’s really the ally and enemy within.

My artwork in my opinion is about the truth of who we are, not the universal truth. The truth that Lorgar seeks is not the masters we must follow, but it is the actions we make that define our lives and those we affect. Lorgar is so hellbent of finding the truth of real gods to pray and grovel over to because he wants no responsibility for himself. Why be the master of your own destiny when gods can be both a source of power, religious guidance and an excusable diversion for your own sins (blame the gods for my actions).

One day the gods will tire of Lorgar and find a new plaything. On that day he will truly know the meaning of guilt and despair far more crushingly than the burning of Monarchia

Inspiration

My inspirations for this piece as mentioned above are Richard E Grant as an actor/ voice actor I’d imagine would play as Lorgar. imagery of GW IP artwork of Lorgar and fan artwork of Lorgar.

For reading inspiration from Black Library includes Gav Thorpe for Lorgar’s Primarch book, Anthony Reynolds for The Purge and Scion of the Storm and ADB for The First Heretic, Betrayer and short stories relating to Lorgar.

Finally, artist inspirations are Francis Bacon, Neil Roberts and Paul Dainton.

That is all for today. I hope you have enjoyed this post, and if your have any suggestions on which Primarch I should do next, post a comment in this post on who you’d like to nominate for me to ruin.

Until next time,

-Bjorn

Fan fiction Fly on the Wall Podcast Post Apocalyptic Saga link post

I’ve decided to make a post to link all of my Post Apocalyptic saga fan fiction posts, based on The Fly on the Wall Podcast series hosted by Luke and Waz, into an all in one link post. This will be updated with each new fan fiction post published on the blog, links below are in chronological order.

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Update (5/4/20): I’m currently editing part 5 to make sure it reads and visually appeals without being too fan fiction-y and too silly. As a halfway point for the entire fan fiction story, I want to make sure it ties plot threads that I’ve been plotting through the series.

Mainly, I want to set the halfway point where there’s a clear goal and destination, not that the characters, background and story up to this point has been established. It’s all to easy to get too sidetracked with ideas and creative overloads, dragging the story for too long and too overly ambitious for the plot I originally had in mind.

So once part 5 is out, everyone will be on track and happy to know that the filler and exposition parts are done.

Oh, and part 5 will be dropping some big stuff about the post apocalypse. Stay tuned!

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Posts below are art posts relating to the fan fiction.

I’ve got some suggestions for listening to music whilst reading these stories, as it’s immersive to the story that’ll make the experience much more enjoyable. These are my personal favourites when I’m writing these fan fiction stories, I hope you’ll enjoy them too!

  • Mitch Murder, Hardwired album
  • Fallout 1 and 2 and 3 OST
  • Wasteland 2 by Mark Morgan
  • Sanctum, Metatron Omega
  • Impact Winter, Mitch Murder
  • Death Stranding, Ludvig Forssell

Lastly I’m grateful to Luke and Waz for letting me do this fan fiction project, despite how much I keep posting about my work I’m very thankful for the guys positive feedback and enjoyment of my work.

You can find the Fly on the Wall Podcast on your preferred podcast app (might not be on all podcast apps), Twitter and Instagram.

Here’s a link to their Twitter site and give their podcast a listen!

https://mobile.twitter.com/flyonthewallpo1

If the link doesn’t work, just type in FlyOnTheWallPo1 on Twitter.

Thanks for reading this post and I hope you’ll enjoy the fan fiction stories (or not).

-Bjorn

Going Primal

Ah another toy salvaged from…..not my toy box this time, but at a carboot sale months back. I saw this at a toy stall in the carboot indoor market that was in a spinning case for many months. I just had to get it!

Looking pretty worn out with missing parts (his transmetal ape head is missing sadly, so no animal mode for this post), this is Optimus Primal, a Maximal who leads his bots to fight against the evil Predecons led by Megaton (namesake descendent) on planet Earth in the past. Because Earth was quite high on energon radiation, the bots took forms of animals to protect themselves from excess overloading.

Anyways you didn’t come here for a 1990’s history lesson, your here for my painting work! Before that, check out some unintentional equipment attachments that primal can carry! I am Megtron! ‘Monkey noises’

Super-primal-power-force-combine-maximal-transform!!!

Now, here’s what I’ve done with the toy after painting it.I’ve used a brown shade to run through the recess areas, to make them stand out along with details that were not visible. Then I drybrushed his grey parts in light silver to bring out the raised areas, making it appear like real metallic arms.

For the purple areas, I’ve used a purple shade to darken the areas and Male the fur recesses more visible. The eyes were painted in layers from orange to white, similar to how his eyes glowed in the animation.

Did you know he can use a hover board as well?

For the metallic blue I just used a blue glaze, as the metal was worn near the edges of the recess lines.

Another toy painted!

How many more can a ruin?

I think I’ll go back to the 80’s and pluck a toy from the range. G1 Galvatron anyone?

-Bjorn

The road to disappointment

This was written back during my last day at P16, the day I’d finally leave school and set off towards my new life and aspirations to become an artist as a career. Years of pressure, being bullied and constant issues with the conforming brainwashing of school would be all behind me. A fresh start in life.

I didn’t want to be a famous artist, I wanted to become an artist and use my talents in the art industry. I’m a background person, I hate the limelight and noise, I wanted to work on my passion to create and build my artistic talents. But school pushed this concept of a famous artist in my mind, they wanted to plant a seed and make me become this ‘famous artist’, so when I come back they’ll have the press and reputation. A tool like many others who could be brainwashed to think they’re special, when in reality the outside world only sees you as a statistic number.

All I ever wanted to be was an artist, nothing more. When I left, I thought I’d finally discover myself and my potential. I didn’t want to become an art teacher as I’m not a social person, I don’t have the skills and ability to be at the front to demonstrate and talk. I prefer being in the background with like minded people working on tasks in an office or studio.

Self employment was going to be my goal like free lance art, but I had to leave that goal as doing self employments work is a nightmare from what I’ve been told. I couldn’t run a business myself as I’m not capable of setting one up and being responsible for multitasking.

Schools out, college I go. Nothing can go wrong, right?

But, the reality was quite bleaker and punishing for me when College turned me down. They didn’t accept me to take on a Level 2 Art and Design course work because I didn’t have the right grades. Despite the amount of work and effort I’ve made to get this far in that time.

Originally I was going to be in the school of access for art and met the tutor there for a meeting, but I was told I was too good for that, but there was no middle ground. I had nowhere to go, I was too good and too under graded to attend. Oh, and the funniest thing was, my paper work was lost by college, which had my personal details on it. The staff lost it, and to this day it was never found……..

After a few weeks I was meeting one of the tutors at the art college where I showed my work off, I was accepted to attend. My dreams nearly in tatters only saved by someone who wanted to see my work.

But during my first year of college I noticed that many who attended didn’t give a damn about the course. They treated it as a social corner, gossiping and hardly doing any work. These were accepted and they showed no respect. People like me who really wanted to work and attend the course were pushed aside for those with ‘grades’ or met the tick marks. I thought of the sick reality that many others in the position like me who were never accepted and didn’t get that opportunity like I did to join. Talented people who might have achieved great things at college, showing the high ups how wrong they were in their judgment.

At college the whole ‘famous artist’ talk was still hammered into me, I would keep saying I wanted to be in the art industry and not be a famous artist. But it kept coming despite my views being clear.

Then in October/ November time I had the news broken to me that my school had made an error, they said I’d passed my Level 2 English after my test a few months ago, but there was an error in the marking. I was absolutely livid. Failure after failure just seems to be my education at that point, and what was worse was that my school advised that I didn’t need to let college know. However, this would make me a fraud, and my school wouldn’t want to admit what they said if college knew about that advice. So after letting college know about the situation they were more than happy to let me continue doing my GCSE English.

By the end of the course I’d achieve a merit grade and an award for the best artwork in the group. I proved to the establishment that I wasn’t messing around, I wanted this to be proof that even someone with lower grades, diagnosed with Autism, and put my head down and work could defy the odds. I wanted the establishment to know I was the crazy bastard that would prove them wrong and make them embarrassed for their error in judgment.

The next two years were punishing for me as I had to deal with more complications with management, support for my needs were not met and my mental health was so bad that I had two mental breakdowns. I had my highs and lows, no friends but the work load was on schedule.

On the week before my hand in date for my FMP level 3 ED, my dog, Leo sadly had to be put down. On my day of handing in my work early, I gave my work in and left quietly and didn’t say goodbye to my group.

I achieved a merit grade with two criteria’s being distinction grade. I was very pleased with the outcome, I wanted to leave college and find place that can offer me work in art.

I found a place that could help, who have the support and guidance for getting me into work. They’ve said they could get me a job in art and support my education.

——

Today looking back on all that work, the years of education, the stress, depression, anxiety, mental breakdowns and fighting the odds, I wonder if it was all worth it in the end. I’m not a bubble dreamer, I know life is hard and not everyone can work towards their dream work. But I worked hard to get the grades I needed to find work in art related areas, nothing fancy nor high paid.

But I’ve been lied to, used, manipulated and treated with disrespect by the British education. There was nothing in the end, only false promises and being used to help the school, college and other places get a good rep and future relations.

I’m very glad that I didn’t go to uni, if I went there and they had the same issues like school and college, and the tuition fee on top of that, I’d probably go crazy. I was recommended that I should go to uni, but I didn’t want to go down that route.

Education is still worth going to, I wouldn’t get rid of it based on what I’ve said in this post. Despite my issues there were good things to be said. My maths tutor at college was one of the best I’ve ever had, he got me close to passing my FS level 2. Art course was good, I got to really explore my potential and how my art work can be developed and themed using the skills and techniques I’ve learnt during my time at college.

But education is severely in need of reforming and improved for the next generation. Being diagnosed with Autism, it’s been rough going through education with the amount of problems I had to deal with. Even now there’s news about schools being under scrutiny for not providing support nor guidance to help those with a disability to find work.

Where I am now in education is the final phase, the time where I’ve only got a few chances left of getting my maths and English achieved.

If there’s an advice I’d give myself back when I was starting my art pathway in year 9, I’d say leave it and not lot the establishment fill my mind with bs. Treat art as a hobby rather than a job, and focus on areas of employment that could take me on and provide support for my needs. Even if I’m only useful at art, I could’ve grown some other skills that don’t require face to face jobs like customer service, guide and so on.

If schools applied reality rather than branding people as ‘special’ or giving terrible advice that they haven’t researched on, then things would’ve been much more straightforward. Having aspirations and dreams aren’t to be put aside and forgotten, without such things life would be dull and uninspiring. It’s these motivational tools that push us to our best and try harder to achieve our goals, even if they may never be achieved.

However, overusing these things, especially in special needs schools have dire consequences for students in their education and beyond. These consequence that schools won’t admit being in the wrong, as I’ve seen many times before where they try to excuse and avoid reasonable criticism.

It’s like what many students I’m learning with have said, ‘they don’t care about our education nor career, they just want students for the money and rep’.

-Bjorn

Another bot painted

Today I’ve got another Transformers toy to show you guys, I’ve forgotten the name of this particular one, but it was part of a duo set I got over a decade ago. This one was one of my top ten favourite Deception toys because of its design and flexible poses, it’s simple but visually awesome as a villain toy. I wasn’t a fan of the alternate mode as it looked pretty generic, but I can forgive it in terms of its design.

What let’s this toy down is the coloured plastic as it looked plain with a lot of details sadly hidden by its plain colour application. Like Quake, it just lacked that extra detail and eye popping presence that would’ve made it come to life.

With my paints, brush and inks I went to work on this toy. Here’s the results!

Now it looks really impressive with more features visible and highlighted, vents, doors, mechanical lines and parts defined for a crisper finish. I went the extra mile by adding drybrushing effects for the mud that would be part of the vehicle mode, and rust texture to represent its duo state of a disused military vehicle and the Decepticons long drenched life in a never ending war. Bullet holes, rust and grime show an aspect of experience and decay fighting against the Autobots.

Other parts I’ve painted were the gun, which I used from Quake’s toy, giving it a much more realistic paint job.

For the vehicle mode the mud and rust would be seen in the point of view as an old military vehicle left to rust in a museum or scrap site. This would help the Decepticon blend in to disguise itself in abandoned places, situating itself near military bases to either surprise attack the humans or collect intel back to base.

That’s all from me for today. I might do one more toy to paint if I can find any suitable candidate. I might risk one toy in particular that Beast Wars fans will either hate or love the finished results.

Until next time,

-Bjorn