Custom Painted Fantasy Miniatures
I have been a long time fan of the tabletop RPG, and of all my (arguable) talents, that of a Game Master is the one I feel the most confident about. Though actual role-playing games take place in the collective imagination of the participants, many props can aid in that process… and a very useful one is a very accurate miniature of a character to use used on a tabletop/battle mat scenario. My love of miniature painting is almost as old as my love of gaming itself and getting a figure as close in look and theme to the character as possible was always an enjoyable challenge. To this end, over the years I did a lot of custom conversions and special touches to my own miniatures and those of my players, and I always enjoyed the results. So I decided to branch out and start taking commissions, and so created Blackspire Studios, which is named after a very long-running D&D campaign world I created, and still run to this day. You can see dozens and dozens of examples of my miniature paint jobs in the Facebook albums, but a few of the best are below.
- BLACKSPIRE (the main PCs)
Golemoro and three of his Omotenashi Shinobi (Hospitality Ninjas): Alita, Gally, and EFFIGY
All you need is an idea of what you want and I can create the perfect custom painted miniature for you.
You can send me as detailed a description of the character you want me to try and capture as you’d like. If the figure is for a tabletop army, let me know all the details and designs you want included and I’ll do my best to accommodate them all. If the commission is for a character in an RPG you’re involved in, write me a character bio, attach a copy of your character sheet, send me a jpeg of your own drawings, whatever you want… and the more descriptive the better. If you’ve written an epic series of stories about your character’s many adventures please don’t expect me to read the whole thing, but I promise I’ll do my best to try glean what I need to capture the “character” of your character.
I have a fairly large inventory of plastic, lead, and pewter figures from Citadel/Games Workshop, Reaper, Ral Partha, and many random others, as well as many other decorative knick knacks and assorted bits to pull from… and I have some limited sculpting ability to boot. Plus… I have a number of other arrows in my quiver and I enjoy the challenge of creating custom painted figures specific to your character’s experiences/back story or your every GM campaign need. Gamers typically spend months, if not years, playing the same character, so its worth investing in a miniature for a character you really enjoy playing. If you’re a war-gaming enthusiast I could also be up to the challenge of helping you create a truly unique army.
Please feel free to browse through the images of some of my other figures in this site, and if you see examples of a techniques that you like, feel free to include those in your description or any other reference you’d like to provide. As an added bonus, every custom piece I create will be showcased in the Albums sections of my Blackspire Studios Facebook site, along with some of the details of your character that inspired certain artistic choices.
Here’s how it works:
There are two different structures for commissions. The first is where the customer provides the figure(s) to be painted, and the second is where your ideal miniature is created using figure(s) that are in my vast & various inventory.
CUSTOMER SUPPLIED MODELS
The basic rate is $75.00 US for painted figure with approximately a 1″ base. 2″ based figures (typically monsters or mounted figured) increase to $150.00. 3″ figures (large monsters/machines) run $200.00 while the (epic) 4″ based models I charge $250.00 for. Anything larger than that we’ll need to discuss the details and pricing one-on-one.
If you commission three of more figures from me that will all receive similar “uniform” paint jobs (typically units from a tabletop wargame) then the price for a 1″ base figure (the majority of army figures) the price drops to $55.00 per figure which is considered the “Army Rate”. If you end up wanting army units made of 2″ sized base (or larger) figures we’ll also need to discuss the details of pricing that sort of job on a case-by-case basis.
I don’t charge for assembly, and each figure gets one free conversion (meaning I’ll swap out something like a weapon or sometimes even a head). Each conversion after the first one will be charged an additional $5 per change. Additionally though, I can also sculpt special pieces if you need something particular and I can even work in materials like translucent resins if the figure calls for it. I charge an additional $10.00 for special sculpted pieces for figures.
I’ll give each figure a Standard Base, which means I’ll add a texture like grass, sand, stones, scrub, snow, or any combination of them for free. If you want something special, elaborate, or that needs to be sculpted, I can also do a Custom Base. Custom Bases add an additional $10 per inch of the figure’s base size.
ORIGINAL CUSTOM FIGURE
The basic rate for a figure that originates from my stock is $100.00 for 1″ based figures (most human sized figures) and $200.00 for 2″ based figures. If you want your character riding a mount that’s likely going to count as a 2″ figure. Anything larger than that we’ll need to discuss the details and pricing one-on-one.
Additionally if you want to have a animal companion or familiar miniature to go along with your character, this is a $25.00 add-on available only to original custom figures.
Original Custom Figures also get a free Custom Base and unlimited conversions. This includes all reasonable additions, conversions, and painting of the figure possible to make the final match the spirit of your character as closely as possible. I should have the inventory to create almost any sort of fantasy/sci-fi miniature you could possibly think of and I enjoy the challenge of trying to make a character emerge from the imagination and “come alive” as a dead-on miniature.
As this is a new venture there’s always a possibility these rates could change, and if you want something that’s big, complex, or otherwise out of the ordinary I reserve the right to negotiate a different rate with you than what’s advertised. If there’s something specific you need that I don’t have, we’ll need to work out an arrangement for me to acquire the raw materials for it, and any reasonable costs may naturally impact the final price. And again, you’ll also be responsible for all shipping charges, including anything you ship to me, and we’ll figure out the shipping rate ahead of time as well.
Once you send me your figure(s)’s description, I’ll pick out the unpainted examples of figures I have in my inventory I think would work best and let you pick from them. I will also provide one “rough draft” and one “final” round of approvals where you’ll be able to request additional changes you’d like made to the figure. I think it’s only fair to charge an additional $25.00 per additional round of approvals after the first, so fair warning if you’re the type to get really particular about that sort of thing.
Once we’ve reached an agreement on both the figure and the price, I will require a 50% down payment to my PayPal account to begin work. If you have a deadline you need me to meet I will try to work towards that, but anything inside a few weeks could be considered a “rush job” and the price may need to be adjusted accordingly.
Once I’m close to complete, I will send you an image for final approval. Like the “rough draft” I will allow for one round of revisions for the “final”, but additional revisions requested after the first will be charged an additional $25 per round of alterations. Once we are both satisfied with the final product it will be shipped out upon receipt of the other half of the agreed upon price.
And if sometime down the line you feel the desire to “level up” your Blackspire Studios figure to sport some fancy new loot you might have acquired… repeat customer discounts will definitely apply.
Now, I’m certainly not limited to painting only fantasy miniatures, I’m happy to take a shot at applying my modeling techniques to any project you’d like to engage my services on, so long as we can both agree on a fee that is reasonable.
So please reach out and let me make your gaming dreams become a reality.