Fangirl Feature – Runebrush

This week’s Fangirl Feature is from Runebrush

Hobby showcase! Share with us: Your favourite images

What games/systems are you most interested in/do you collect?

Too many! I’ve a handful of non-Games Workshop games such as Dropfleet Commander, Arcadia Quest and Rivet Wars, but in recent years have pretty much stuck to GW games, primarily Age of Sigmar, Necromunda and 40k. I’m pretty much a miniatures first game system second kind of person and find GW keeps producing enough interesting miniatures and concepts for their games to hold my attention.

Any specific armies?

For Age of Sigmar I’ve three: Khorne Bloodbound; Grand Host of Nagash; Legion of Grief (my newest army). 40k wise I’ve a small (and old) Space Wolves force and my newer Imperial Knight army, I’ve also the best part of an Adeptus Mechanicus army in boxes!

What aspect of the hobby are you most interested in?

First and foremost I consider myself a painter, at one point it wasn’t that easy to get games so I spent a lot more time painting and modelling so think I became more invested in that side of the hobby quite heavily and it’s stuck. That said I’m a pretty prolific reader, I don’t think you can beat a good book and our hobby has an amazing number of great authors.

What compelled you first start or restart the hobby?

I first got introduced to the hobby when I was perhaps 8 or 9 on a holiday to Brixham in Devon, that was pretty much my first step into the world of “tangible” fantasy. Within the next couple of years I started reading Tolkien and it wasn’t long until I had my first box of miniatures and a few paints.

Over the (near enough 30) years the hobby has been a constant companion in one form or another. I actually think the ability to transport yourself to a different world is a brilliant skill to have in today’s age of instant communication and real world affairs.

Do you have any future plans for your hobby?

Far too many! Oddly the next big plan I’ve got is to strip out my hobby area and rebuild it, this includes having a purge of old projects I’m not going to touch. After that I’m full fettle onto my 2020 Golden Demon entry. I’m still on a drive to improve my brush skills too, so expect a few one off models to creep into the mix.

What sort of materials do you use to create your hobby? How long does it take you to complete a project?

I use a pretty wide range of different materials when it comes to hobby projects. Paint wise my collection is primarily Citadel, but with a good smattering of P3, Vallejo and Scale75. Brush wise I’ve just got back into using Rosemary & Co brushes for my detail work, but use a pretty diverse range of Series 7, 8404’s and Citadel. I also flip between using a dry and wet palette depending on what I’m painting. From a modelling aspect, I’ll also give an honourable mention to Magic Sculpt epoxy putty – basically it’s a putty that works like a greenstuff/milliput mix.

Timescales can vary hugely from a few hours to months. One thing I’ve tried to force myself to do in recent years, is to try and keep the level of detail and techniques appropriate to the project in hand. So with my most recent Legion of Grief army I consciously set it as a “tabletop project” and took around 15 weeks in total to assemble and paint all 2000 points worth of models. One of the key items was using Citadel Contrast paints to get the bulk of the colours painted. Conversely, my Porphyrion took around ten months (on and off) and involved airbrushing, oil washes and other methods I’d not dream of doing on a full army.

What inspires you to keep going? Do you admire any other hobbyists?

The best form of inspiration I’ve found is some kind of deadline – that bit of pressure really helps to focus you on getting something finished at a specific date (and stops you going off at tangents).

One of the biggest killers of most hobbyists is when we start to procrastinate because we can’t decide on how to do something or we’ve got burn out after another project. Following a painting course the beginning of this year, a group now gets together and run a Hobby Hangout using a few webcams and something like Skype. It varies between a couple of times a month and a couple of times a week depending on people’s schedule. It’s amazing how much more hobby you can get done in an evening when you’re doing it with other hobbyists! (this does include being heckled if you sit there wasting time).

There’s a huge list of people I admire in the hobby – far too long to list at the risk of forgetting somebody! Probably one person I’d say deserves being mentioned is Darren Latham and the YouTube videos he’s creating at the moment. Not only are they fantastic, but Darren has a great teaching style backed up by his drive to try and improve everybodies hobby by demystifying some of what I’d class as the “higher end” painting styles and techniques, I just love that he’s so focused on spreading his knowledge for free too!

What do you find most frustrating about the hobby?

Excessive negativity is probably one of the top of my list. We’re all allowed a bit of a grumble, but ultimately nobody is forcing you to be here! Hobbies are meant to be enjoyable (and moaning isn’t a hobby).

Another close one is when people refer to something as “cheating” (at least from a painting aspect – cheating in games is bad). This aspect of the hobby doesn’t have rules, so how can you cheat? If you achieve something in two steps that previously took ten, then you’ve simply become more efficient. The only cheating I see is getting somebody else to do the job and pretending you’ve done it!

Do you have any tips for any aspiring hobbyists – beyond the usual ‘practice daily’? 

I could quite happily waffle on for pages with little tips – but I’ll pick a few that for me I do daily and have made a big difference.

Pick the right brush for the job – might sound daft, but if you’re trying to paint a big area don’t go straight for a Size 0 Series 7 brush! Match the brush up with the job you’re doing, if you don’t need a super sharp point, then don’t use a brush with one.

If you’re following a guide of some kind, look at what you’re trying to achieve rather than simply following the defined list of steps like a robot. If you’ve shaded something and it doesn’t look dark enough then don’t be afraid to make it a bit darker.  This is because there are lots of factors that you can’t tell from paint consistency down to how you use your brush.

Find yourself a mixing brush. I’ve dramatically increased the life expectancy of my more expensive brushes by using a Citadel Glaze brush to take the paint from a pot onto my palette and water it down.

Finally never rage quit claiming “I’ll never paint like that”.  If you speak to any painter, they’ll likely admit that they’ve done a mountain of janky paint jobs that has resulted in parts of models being repainted, striped or buried at the bottom of the garden.  Most painters also have thousands of hours of experience under their belt too.

What is your fondest hobby memory?

I don’t think I could not include picking up my Golden Demon in 2018. I still have a feeling of imposter syndrome if I think too hard about it, but you could have honestly knocked me over with a feather when I heard my name called out.  It’s also really spurred me on to improve.

Another memory (or more accurately set of memories) is back during my teenage years with a group of us playing Necromunda at a friends house (we did this a lot for something like 5 or 6 years). It still sits as some of the best memories, before any of us had any real life commitments and life was simpler – unlike the rules at the time.

Anything else you would like to tell our readers?

I’ve no podcast to promote (yet?), am really slack at putting stuff on my blog and yet to really dive into YouTube videos (despite having picked up the kit for it).

So I think my message is going to have to be to “keep at it”.  The painting and modelling side of the community are amazing at sharing ideas, suggestions and generally supporting each other.  Never feel like you can’t ask a question and if you don’t hear back, that’s not a problem, somebody else will be able to answer you!


Many thanks Runebrush for taking the time to answer these questions for the Fangirl Feature this week.

You can find Runebrush on

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And if you’d like to be featured on the blog then please, don’t hesitate to get in contact.

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