Friday, January 24, 2014

Maintaining your Hobbying

So I felt like I should provide a little post to help those of you such as college students who don't have any models to paint and feel like you can't really do anything related to the hobby right now aside from reading.  I'm hoping to provide you with a couple of ways that you can still participate in 40k and be excited about it and even achieve progress within the hobby one way or another.  This can be done in a couple of ways:

Getting a couple of minis.  I understand that you guys can't always bring your armies with you to college, or on trips to places, and so on.  You don't want to worry about storing them or transporting them, but I think there's still a way that you can do this.  Once you're at your final destination (typically your dorm or apartment) you can try and get a new box of minis delivered to you.  In the case of the student he could look on ebay and see that a new box of stormboyz or lootas/burnaz are about 22 bucks each including shipping (I've personally checked b/c i was tempted to buy them when i saw how cheap they were).  Or maybe you can just get some of your own models shipped to you if they're still new in their boxes as well to save you on space so you don't have to worry about packing them with your stuff.  The key is, since storage is an issue, not to get something too long.  Don't buy a battleforce, don't get that sick looking flyer.  Get a small 5-10 man box of something that you can just model at random times.  If its cheap you aren't really losing very much, and storing such a small amount of minis isn't much of a problem.  If worst comes to worst you can always buy a plastic tubberware container, put your models in that, and stuff it with paper towels or socks or wrap your minis with tissue paper.  The paint might be slightly more of an issue as you'd need to buy it where you're at, but typically you can get TONS of acryllic paints at like walmart or so for 2-3 bucks each, and if you're doing something simple you probably only need maybe 5 paints, plus a thing of brushes that might be another 5 bucks, an x-acto knife (not sure on what a cheap one of those costs), a filing tool (?), and super glue ($3 just bought some from walmart myself).  So in the end you're investing about 20 bucks plus the cost of a model, but you'll never have to worry about that again for the most part since you won't need to take that back and forth to home over breaks (though at the end of the term you might need to take it back if you're moving to another place the next year, but the amount of stuff can easily fit in a small pocket of a backpack or the like).  Just give that a thought, for the small investment you might find it to be worthwhile to pursue.

So perhaps you still don't want to actually paint up minis or buy up new boxes b/c you have some stronger arguments against that, or you aren't willing to pay that amount of money.  Well you still can model if you'd like, but its not going to be minis.  You can always work on making terrain!  In many apartments or dorms there are oftentimes tons of cardboard trash, or styrofoam blocks from boxes of electronics that get tossed out, but those are the sorts of materials that are beautiful for making terrain.  So for perhaps no cost you can get to work with that, cutting up cardboard and gluing it together (fine, perhaps you need to spend just a little bit of money on glue and something to cut, either a hobby knife or scissors).  This methodology will leave you with some fairly ugly terrain, but it'll at least be functional when you head back home!  You can make ruins and use cut out sections to act as supporting walls to keep up the upper levels, you could just make plain old walls and glue pieces on their sides to act as 'bases' for the upper wall segments.  You can carve up the styrofoam to make rocky surfaces, chunks of debris, spires, all sorts of misc. things.  The major difficulty with making terrain though is transportation, that is still very much an issue.  Perhaps one of you can provide a better suggestion than myself, for all I can think of is to either ship it back home or to make it so that it can break down and exist as small pieces for later reassembly.

Given even that idea you're still not sure how to hobby, cause you sure don't want to spend money to ship back a couple chunks of cardboard you cut up or some styrofoam shapes that vaguely resemble rocks.  This is where you can do what I do lots of:  write.  You can always write up lore for your armies, you can write new lists, you can frequent forums, you can concoct fan-fiction and share it with others, you can write your own blog for that matter!  I personally love developing the stories behind my armies and creating settings and worlds devoted to them, and there's no reason you shouldn't either!  Its your army, your lore, your baby, you can make ANYTHING happen, and make your forces into the biggest badasses in existance!  But when it comes to writing, anything is possible and the only thing that limits you is whatever you want to stop you.

Anyways, I hope this post was helpful to some of you, and even if you can't utilize it yourself feel free to comment and critique it, or expand on my ideas, or help others inspire themselves with these principles if they seem to need it (and want that inspiration).


  1. Another great and thought provoking article mate.

    One idea I've had that could aid with transport, but could be unsuitable due to budget constraints is a small miniatures case. Specifically one produced by

    They do card boxes and foam inserts that are fully customisable. It won't give me the direct link but they do a small case, about 20cm by 25cm and 10cm deep. It runs at about £20 including foam and is highly durable.

    There should be enough slots in it to hold a squad, maybe too, and if you get the right size tray they're ideal for storing GW paints in too. You could also use a knife to combine a few compartments lengthways to create brush storage

  2. Excellent idea, and considering KR Multicase is easy to swap around among your cases (I myself have a backpack from them and absolutely love it) and this will also help you in getting around with your army in the future! Not to mention of course that next time you go off to someplace you can use that case and just get new foam for a small squad again.