Yes, regular readers, it is that time of year again when I break out for the fair city of Nottingham and the Geek-vana that is Forge World Open Day. Those of you who have long subscribed to my drivel will know all too well that each year I pop up there for a weekend of general merriment and resin shopping, and because I am now a veteran of such days, I thought I’d give you some tips on preparing for the day, and a peek at what I’m taking with me to the painting competition.
The trip from London to Nottingham (and back again) can actually be very enjoyable. The car is a good choice if you don’t mind spending 2.5 to 3 Hours on the M1. No, no, if you’re coming from London (and being a Londoner I’m assuming you are because we don’t really believe that the rest of the country actually exists in any tangible way), the train is the way to go. If you book far enough in advance, a 1st Class ticket will cost you about £5.00 more than a standard ticket and I do like my soft, comfy seats and free coffee. To get from the station (or central Nottingham) to Warhammer World, your best options are either a good walk or a short taxi. I believe busses/trams also head out that way, though I’m more of a walk/taxi sort of person myself, and a stroll by the canal on a sunny day is more than passable.
Nottingham has some fine hotels to stay at, and plenty of awful ones. My advice: unless you’re happy to see the funny side of tragedy, don’t stay at the Britannia. I’ve gone Ibis this year, so I’ll let you know how that goes in my follow up post. All I know is that it can’t be worse (well done, idiot, you’ve just jinxed yourself).
There’s also a hell of a lot to do in Nottingham, and not all of it revolves around Warhammer or Robin Hood. There’s the castle (which, in truth, does have a fair bit of Robin Hood going on), a lace museum, and a small, regional art gallery, and… well, I’m sure you’ll find something to keep you busy. If you’re anything like me though, you’ll prefer to be at a good ol’ Nottingham Pub. And boy, do they have some ol’ ones up there.
Ye Olde Trip To Jerusalem is one of those pubs and I definitely recommend stopping in – it’s where I spent a pleasant early afternoon last year. But there are lots of others. The Pit And The Pendulum, The Castle, Ye Olde Salutation, The Round House and plenty of others are worth visiting. Even the Pitcher & Piano (slightly poncy chain of pubs in the UK for them that don’t know) is built inside an old church and looks amazing.
Enough Of The Tour Guide Schtick!
Quite right. So, what Am I bringing to this year’s painting competition? Well, I had intended to bring a freshly painted Varag Ghoul-Chewer to show off, given that it’s my current project, but alas, I have not had time to complete it…
What can I say? Being a man about town leaves one only so many hours to paint and there simply haven’t been enough. So instead, I spent a couple of hours last night tidying up an old favourite and making a display base for him. Here he is:
Yes, the big fella is coming along with me and will be in the display cases there. I’m not hoping to win – the standards are very high (and I don’t have a smoke machine or flashing lights all over it, and it wasn’t the most expensive thing there), but I do like to hover nearby and listen out for any compliments that might come my way. So if you see it while you’re there. Don’t forget to exclaim something like “Wow! This Blood Angels Leviathan Dreadnought Is Amazing! My Mind Is Blown! Wow!” or words to that effect. I can’t promise I’ll be there to hear it, but the judges might be and that’s cool. 😉
Now, the thing I love most about the above picture is that the “display base” is a bit of a hack. I didn’t have a plinth big enough for this guy’s base so I had to improvise. I thought about using some CDs maybe, or the lid of a tub of soup, but then I looked at my paint palette and turned it over and…
Yep. I turned it over, sprayed it black, coated it with ‘Ardcoat and it works! It started life as the lid for an old tub of Citadel sand, became my palette, and now it’s moonlighting as a display base. In a way, I think it’s rather fitting that my palette should end up attending the show – after all, it contributed greatly to painting process.
So if you’re coming up to Nottingham this weekend, I hope you get a chance to see it in the flesh, and if you see me in the flesh, do tell me to put some clothes on and come over and say hello.
And Will Sir Be Shopping?
Oh, indeed Sir will. I won’t say exactly what I’m buying yet, but it’s big. Well, for GW it would be big. In Forge World terms it’s small/medium but it’s still big to me. It won’t be anything from the ‘first chance to buy’ that you can see here:
But how about that Legio Custodes Dropship!? And why can’t the Blood Bowl troll look as good as that Minotaur!? All good stuff that I look forward to seeing in the bare resin.
So, I’m in for a good weekend, I reckon. I shall report back as usual with as many interesting pictures that I can take (which you’ll probably have already seen on other sites by the time I get round to posting but whatevs). I hope you have a good weekend too. Onwards!