My Hobby Progress of 2018 and thoughts on hobby motivation

I just read a really interesting article by JB/Asslessman over at his blog Leadplague. The post in question: Hobby mojo or how to make the best of our hobby. I recommend getting your butt over there and reading it and if you don't already follow JB, why not you weirdo?

I guess this is kind of my own personal response to that article.

For a quick summation, in it he discusses hobby motivation, the use of terms like "hobby mojo" and "hobby burnout", in what is essentially a past-time meant for enjoyment. And he mentions how partaking in said hobby is a choice and shouldn't feel like a chore and highlights ways he keeps his motivation going in his own hobby space.

In my comment on the article I mentioned how I believe those terms can mean a lot of different things to a lot of different people and what I usually mean by them. After stepping away a combination of the thoughts provoked by that article and that were stirred up after my own comment were still ticking over and I needed to write them down.

I think what that combination did was make me look hard at my own perspective on my hobbies. I do tend to get very critical of my own hobby work and output, which garners me a lot of flak from my partner and friends looking in from the outside.

I had even said on a recent Instagram post I was coming out of a "hobby drought" when I posted a w.i.p. of something. And again this ties to JB's article, but mostly on my negative head-space. Was I really going through a hobby drought? No, not really after thinking about it.

I'd made the choice to put my hobby work on hold to organise and clean up my hobby space (and the blog) so that when it was done I would be able to concentrate more on my hobby projects and get more efficiency out of my work-space.

So why the negativity? Why make it seem I was unable to do hobby work against my wishes when it was me that had made that choice to begin with?

I think the answer to that is, it's all a matter of perspective. If you'd asked me a week ago:
"How is your hobby work/output going?"
I'd have responded:
"Terrible, I've ONLY completed 1 miniature this year and I've done nothing else..."

But... My perspective has changed since reading that article and writing that comment. I looked around me and thought "But I haven't done NOTHING else, that's just blatantly not true, let's make a list of what I've been working on since the beginning of 2018!"

And here is that list:

Miniatures: (all built 2018 unless otherwise noted)

Fully painted:

1 Great Unclean One

Paint in progress:

1 Poxbringer Herald of Nurgle (carried over from 2017)
60 Nurgle Plaguebearers (carried over from 2017, 40 built 2018)
6 Plague Drones of Nurgle (carried over from 2017, 3 built 2018)
9 Nurgling Swarms (carried over from 2017)
1 Tree Monster (carried over from 2017)
1 Beastclaw Huskard on Thundertusk
1 Beastclaw Thundertusk Beastriders
1 Death Guard Plague Surgeon
5 Death Guard Blightlord Terminators
3 Myphitic Blight-Haulers
1 Canoness (carried over from 2017)
10 Sisters of Battle (carried over from 2017)
15 Chaos Cultists (built 2016, pulled out of storage and back into the painting queue)

Built ready to prime:

1 Glottkin of Nurgle
1 Gutrot Spume
1 Nurgle Rotbringer Sorcerer
1 Sloppity Bilepiper
1 Spoilpox Scrivener
1 Clan Pestilens Plague Furnace
1 Clan Pestilens Plague Priest
2 Clan Pestilens Plagueclaw Catapults
1 Inquisitor Eisenhorn
1 Eversor Assassin
1 Callidus Assassin
1 Vindicare Assassin
1 Culexus Assassin
1 Chaos Terminator Sorcerer Lord
1 Death Guard Typhus, Herald of the Plague God
1 Death Guard Lord of Contagion
1 Death Guard Tallyman
1 Death Guard Noxious Blightbringer
1 Death Guard Biologus Putrifier
1 Death Guard Malignant Plaguecaster
14 Death Guard Plague Marines
3 Death Guard Deathshroud Terminators
1 Death Guard Foetid Bloat-Drone
1 Death Guard Plagueburst Crawler
1 Slaanesh skirmish warband (built 2017 with some recent additions)
1 Lord Celestant on Dracoth/Vandus Hammerhand
1 Lord Relictor
1 Lord Aquilor
1 Neave Blacktalon
1 Lord Ordinator Vorrus Starstrike
10 Stormcast Liberators w/warhammer shield
10 Stormcast Liberators w/2 warblades
5 Stormcast Retributors
3 Stormcast Prosecutors w/hammers
3 Aetherwings
1 Human Blood Bowl Team
1 Orc Blood Bowl Team
Steelheart's Champions Shadespire Warband
Garrek's Reavers Shadespire Warband
Sepulchral Guard Shadespire Warband
Ironskull's Boyz Shadespire Warband
Chosen Axes Shadespire Warband
Spiteclaw's Swarm shadespire Warband
Magore's Fiends Shadespire Warband
Farstriders Shadespire Warband
A few Inq28 miniatures (some new, some old)
Also built/converted and primed 2 Giants/Gargants for a friend.

Terrain: (all built 2018 unless otherwise noted)

Paint in progress:

Necromunda Bulkhead Shipping containers (built 2015, pulled out of storage and back into the painting queue)

Built ready to prime:

1 Sigmarite Mausoleum set
2 Arcane Ruins sets
1 Dreadstone Blight ruined tower
1 Chapel of Morr (bilt some time ago, back into queue)
3 Citadel Walls & Fences sets
1 Balewind Vortex
1 Dreadfire Portal
1 Magewrath Throne (the old one with skull tower)
1 Eternity Stair
Deadbolt's Derelict Corridors (MDF Necromunda/Zone Mortalis walls)
Sci-Fi palettes
Sci-Fi trunks

When I finally finished compiling that list I was incredulous... Then I wondered "What does that all look like?"

So I got it all out and took a picture:

So there you go... My head says I've done nothing... That list and picture above is all the nothing I've been doing...

I said I've only completed 1 miniature this year. But I've got around 80 on the verge of completion and several projects that will fill the gap once their done.

This list and image doesn't even factor in several half finished builds, a few conversions I'm working on, RPG stuff in the planning and some miniature repair work I've done for friends.

So, after getting all that written down and seeing for myself what I've actually had going on hobby-wise, I think I'll end with some of my thoughts on hobby motivation.

  • It's all a matter of perspective. Try to shake off your negative thoughts, progress is progress, even if it's just a little here and there.
  • Try keeping several projects on the go and at different stages, then if you do find yourself tiring of one, switch to another. 
  • Enjoy the process. If you want to paint something, paint. If you want to build something, build.
  • You do have to put in time and effort to complete projects, but that doesn't mean it has to be chore. Make your hobby time fulfilling.
  • If you choose to do something else instead of carrying on with a hobby project. Don't beat yourself up about it, enjoy whatever you've chosen to do in the mean-time and when you come back enjoy your hobby once again.
  • Learning a new technique, working with a new material or even challenging yourself to sit and complete a single miniature can build impetus and encourage you with other projects.

I think I'm actually feeling a little refreshed after that. And as an added bonus I'm going to take that list and put it in my sidebar as a project log for the year, so I can keep track and update it as I work through them.

My apologies if I went off on a mad ramble, but I really needed to get these thoughts written down.

And JB, thanks for writing an article that turned out to be very thought provoking for me and made me reevaluate my perspective.

Until next time, take care.


  1. That GUO of yours is so darn cool, very inspiring :)

    1. Thank you very much, it was a really fun conversion. I really need to post it up on the blog.

  2. Do it!

    Mine is only assembled and based - I am still way to scaret to start such a big model.

    1. I must admit I was a bit put off by such a large miniature, specially with the conversion work I had in mind. but once I got started it just seemed to flow.

  3. I'm really glad you got this post like this. I really meant it as something personnal and in no way as a lesson to nayone because we all have our own way to see things and process thoughts.
    I really do want to emphasise the positive over the negative side though. We do get frustration from "underachieving" but a hobby is precisely the place where it does not matter.
    You have talent and skill and I have no doubt some of those WIPs will get done sonner or later. Once they are , there's nothing that can take that away. ^^
    See, the "ready to prime" list could appear to be daunting, but it's not a list of what you "have" to do but what you "can" do which is way more exciting !
    Whatever you do, if it eases your mind, brings you the solace you were looking for, then it's time/energy well spent in my eye. ^^

    1. Well that's the thing isn't it. It may have been a personal thing, but it was still very insightful as a reader.

      Enough to make me take a step back and review my outlook a little. It was a good thing. We can all learn a thing or two about trying to get out of a negative thought pattern and trying to latch on to a more positive mind-set.

      As you said above about the frustration of underachieving shouldn't matter in a hobby. I think I dwell too much on what is and isn't complete.

      That's what significantly changed for me, yes "completing" something is good, but "progress" is good too. I kept falling into looking at ongoing projects as just "not finished" rather than a work in progress to enjoy.

  4. That’s a good looking amount of stuff on the table there. All too easy to only consider “fully painted and based” as being outputs or hobby time, but really, there’s a whole load stuff that gets done and worked on as you’ve demonstrated! Maybe I should do a 6 month count soon myself and see what I’ve done this year :)

    1. I'd say go for it! It was really an eye opener for me what actually had at different stages of progress.

    2. Ha...................6 months later I did a count for my end of year summary. Its an insane amount! Something like 850 models! I reckon I can squeeze in a few more regiments in the next week or so as well haha.

    3. Wow. That is an insane amount, kudos to you!
      My hobby projects have been in a holding pattern for the last couple of months unfortunately, I've dabbled here and there around several things when I've had some free time but no major progress has been made.
      The last couple of days I decided to clean up the blog with a new look and I've been organising photos from my phone for upload, so I have a couple of completed projects in hand to write about.

    4. Nice - look forward to the posts!

      My lot was an incredible amount and I don't quite know how I managed it, amongst all of the other stuff I have to do.......I'm at the point now where if I don't do some hobby for 20-30 mins a day, I get the twitch to create something :)


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