Thursday, April 1, 2010

Adepticon 2010- Rogue Demon

Sunday- Rogue Demon Painting Competition

As I mention before I had two entries in the Rogue Demon. My “Blessing of Sigmar” which should have been in the single fantasy category and my whole Lord the Rings army that I entered as a “Fangorn” Diorama in the Open Category, while both my entries where solid and I felt had potential given what I have seen in past Rogue Demons. This year was at whole different level. Given Games Workshops lack of putting on their own events the last two years. This event was really just The Midwests Golden Demon for was just called something else, we had entrys, by Dave Taylor, Matthieu Fontaine, Bennet Blalock Doane, Dylan Gauker, James and Cathy Wappel, and Jess Hodges. Between everyone I just spoke Of..we are are talking about over 50 Golden Demons between them and most are professional painters doing display work for many companies in the industry or teaching seminars at Adepticon. So I didn’t have a chance in hell of winning period. I also forgot (rushed, and between events) to circle the proper category on my card for my “Blessing of Sigmar” and although its obvious what category it belonged in, I’m not sure it even got judged, which really bummed me out because it was my own fault. In the past I always viewed the Rogue Demon as second tier painting event, but with the popularity of Adepticon, the Rogue Demon this year was every bit a Golden Demon event. I’m no trained professional artist, or savant natural like these people I’m just a guy with years of hobbying under my belt. So in the end I got on the bus for the Rogue Demon too late, I should had my stuff in a couple years ago where I at least had chance, the way it was this year and even last year, I just should have stayed home. I think next year I’m just going to devote my time to doubling up my appearance scores on my own tournament armies as I’m first to admit I just can’t compete with the level of talent so it’s a waste of my time even entering. As its same people rolling it every year, hey kudos to them right?, I just didnt think it was going to be "this" good. The Rogue Demon and my performance Saturday were my only real disappointments with Adepticon 2010 from a personal perspective.

Edit 4/7: (I've had for the first time in four years edit my previous comments here for two reasons. RD organizers have personally answered my questions making my suggestions not applicable. Secondly, certain people are purposely taking my comments out of context in order to personally attack me for other positions I have on the hobby- its not worth leaving it up for further misinterpretation.)


Chicago Terrain Factory said...

Why would you want to restrict who can enter the Rogue Demon? It would be like banning previous winners of the Championships from participating in next year's championship.

John@Plastic Legions said...

I'm not Rich- I'm suggesting two different contests one for professionals and one for everyone else.. call it Rogue Demon A and Rogue Demon B if it sits better with you.. The qualifier for "B" being you havent won a golden demon.
This years RD was a professional competition and I am sure plenty entered it and worked hard on their entries assuming it was an amateur competition. Now that I know where it stands I'll approach it differently.

Amanda said...

I agree that it might be a good idea to have two distinct competitions -particularly for a convention that is "for gamers, by gamers." Professional painting doesn't really seem to fit that spirit entirely. I know that the painting is already judged in some capacity for armies in the tournament, but perhaps they could have one competition for people that want to paint professionally, and one comeptition that would be open only to models that spent some time on the tables over the weekend. That way "gamers" would still be competing with gamers and "painters" would be doing the same. In your case, you might find that you have an entry in each competition: Sigmar under "painting" and the LoTR figs under "gaming."

Dave said...

Well, I understand your frustration, but what you are, in effect, asking for is an "easier" contest. We've made a very real effort to push the Rogue Demon competition up to a first tier event, with prize support and Internet coverage. I think we're getting close to that goal.

But to suggest that we have two seperate contests isn't really logistically feasible, nor is it, in my opinion, appropriate. Bottom line is this: if you want to be competitive in the Rogue Demon, you need to spend a lot of time and effort on your entries. You need to step up your game. It's that simple. The fact that the competition attracts so many well-known painters should be motivational, not disheartening. You should want to improve your skills, not enter a less-competitive competition that bars "professional" painters. Of course, this is just my opinion.

Dave Pauwels

John@Plastic Legions said...

Hey Dave,
Appreciate your feedback, I agree part of this is frustration, mainly with my own assumptions about the contest.

Adepticons "by gamers, for gamers"
tagline, always made me perceive the Rogue Demon wasn't the Golden Demon but a lesser contest. Its quite clear from this year that is not the case, (over 50 golden demons between the people I mentioned, and that isnt even everyone)

Anyway I agree, I need to suck it up and get better, however when the contest is dominated by some of the top names in the industry, there is only so much stepping up to do. I'll always continue to work to improve my skills, however, breaking into that elite circle of "professionals" seems nigh impossible for the hobbyist. Because no matter how good you are I think in subjective contests such as this perception versus reality will always takes it toll.

When it comes to pieces of equal quality and one is painted by an unknown and one is painted by a guy with 15 Golden Demon statues on his shelf, its very easy for the Judges to give the nod to the sure thing..because it just "must be better". I'm not trying to imply anything inappropriate, that's just the nature of the human subconscious.

Point being, breaking into the "Golden Demon" circle of artists is much harder than just "stepping up your game", which is why I hoped the Rogue Demon was a different kind of contest. Anyway your points are well taken, thanks for the comment, I am big fan of your work.

Conspyre said...

Does the RD not have anonymous judging? If the judges are swayed by a card that says "Dr. Bignutz Painter Guy" next to a model, then there's clearly a flaw in the manner in which they're scoring, not the entries they're accepting. Last I checked, the MMSI painting comps (and I believe Golden Daemon) just numbered each entry in each category, the judges picked the numbers they liked, and then they looked up who they belonged to.

John@Plastic Legions said...

You submit a card with your entry that clearly has you name and badge number on that. I saw all the cards flipped at one point late saturday night in display case..not sure if that meant it was "judged" or getting set up for blind judging.
The issue really is were talking about such a small clique of people that if you follow it with any level detail you can tell who's stuff is who's pretty easily even with blind judging, not sure on the actual judging mechanic. I'm absolutely sure its as fair as possible, my point is just to illustrate the difficulty of amateurs trying to compete with professionals.

The_King_Elessar said...

"The issue really is were talking about such a small clique of people that if you follow it with any level detail you can tell who's stuff is who's pretty easily even with blind judging, not sure on the actual judging mechanic. " - I'm confused, help me out here. You're saying that the judges can *potentially* see, for themselves, that these people good enough to win a Golden Daemon have entered by their models they've entered, even without reading the name? Am I misunderstanding?

John@Plastic Legions said...

yes- I am saying alot these folks
have a large body of professional work out there and if you follow the GD scene you can tell whose work is whose to certain extent without a name attached to a piece, just like any art student can tell a Renoir from a Monet, if you know the work of folks that have entries in an event its not hard to find any individuals work, These people are artists with there own particular styles after awhile their art speaks for itself.

Dave said...

First- the 'Blessing of Sigamr' is a great piece. You clearly have the potential to do GD quality work. Look, I started out army painting long before I won my first Demon and I think army painting is where you can really hone your skills.

As far as the judging goes, we make every attempt to keep each entry anonymous. That said, Chris Borer and I have been around long enough to know certain painters' styles. And if you follow specific painters' blogs, then you probably know what they've been working on.

But we judge each piece against the rest of the category without any regard to who did what. Is it a perfect system, of course not. But between Chris and I, I believe we have a good level of experience and impartiality.

The MMSI is judged in a completely different manner with a very different system. Each piece is judged on its own merits and not against any other entry. I think it is a great methodology, but just something that isn't appropriate for the Rogue Demons, which is more of a competition against other painters, as is Games Day and GenCon.


John Laubersheimer said...

A key thing that I think you're missing is the fact that one of the draws of the Rogue Demon is the fact that it's not manufacturer specific. You can enter anything, not just a GW model. The entrants have a pretty wide open field to pursue their creative impulses. Forcing the winners to go to a GD event with more model restrictions because they're 'too good' is an extremely limiting 'prize'.

Two other things: you're aware that Dave Taylor actually played in the 40k Championships, right? He didn't just swoop in and try to 'roll' a painting contest.

I'd also like to point out that Dave A has been exceedingly polite to you considering that you've essentially trashed every aspect of his event publicly AND now there's all this time spent throwing mud on his judging. Hell, you've even spent time vilifying the entrants.


John@Plastic Legions said...

@ Laubersheimer.

Of course I am aware of all things Dave Taylor and that he has 15 golden demons to his credit. Dave is professional in the wargaming industry, and deserve every accolade placed upon him. Whether he played in the event is irrelevant to my greater point.

In no way am I trying to trash Dave or Chris Borer or the Rogue Demon.I have nothing but great respect for the them and the people I mention in my comments. To me this all about the perception of whether the Rogue Demon is a competition for Amateurs or Professionals, I had made the mistake of assuming the former, given Daves comments I see he's been making a huge effort to elevate the RD's status and congrats that he has done so. As of this year the Adepticon Rogue Demon is now Golden Demon level event. I have zero doubt the judging at this years RD was absolutely impartial, you are taking my comments about the overall nature of subjective judging out of context.

In reality my criticisms are about my perceptions and disappointment in the contest because its become something other that what I thought it was. I certainly don't think my pieces were good enough to win this year against what was there.
My thoughts about the Rogue Demon where clearly asking about what kind of contest it "is"

As for "classy" the comment, and your total BS that I am "vilifying" the entrants.. you obviously missed the point in what I am trying to say, if you did you wouldn't be such a smug prick.
I'll certainly remember your name
in case we get a chance to meet face to face.

Dave said...

John- for the record, I didn't take anything you said as in any way disparaging the competition, judges or entrants. I think we were having a pretty respectful and thought-provoking conversation about the Rogue Demons and how they've evolved.

I'm definitely gonna be following your blog.

Dave Pauwels

John Laubersheimer said...

Name calling, now.

Classy, indeed.

John@Plastic Legions said...

This "self entitled" bullshit has got to stop, you're taking what I said out of context. if the implication is there. let me clarify it now . I don't think I should have won anything given the level of talent there, period. and never said otherwise. My question was simply what kind of event is the Rogue Demon. Now we know, I am fine and supportive of that. I made some assumptions, I was wrong, I accept that, that doesn't mean I dont have the right be bummed out the event isn't what I thought it was.

The_King_Elessar said...

I also don't understand your comment about 'doubling up' you appearance scores...I haven't seen any of your work bar the stuff linked on the post (I'm new here) but it's clearly above average. Do you not paint rank-and-file to the same standard intentionally, as they aren't competition entrants?

John@Plastic Legions said...

@King...when you have 4000 points of a certain army (like my Empire)done over a three year period there is technical difference across the models..some are just better than others...the pieces I link to in this post,( my RD entries). Were individual projects I did for certain events and are painted to as high as standard as I had time. As I now go back to a new army from scratch (in my case lizards) I'm going to take the time to do each unit to as high a standard as I can, since it is a smaller model count goal is to create a strong, cohesive presentation..I'd like the army to be one whole 'package' as opposed to new units being added in over a long time period..hope that make sense, thanks for asking.

The_King_Elessar said...

Ah, okay. I was just surprised, because I got the feeling painting was kinda your main 'fun' in the hobby - maybe it was just this post came across this way, or just me.

I have over 10k of 40K Orks, but not all of them are's too daunting to get started into the pile, too - if you know what I mean. Plus, I feel bad if I paint them...because I have about 5k of Eldar need finished, though they're more % painted than the Orks.

John@Plastic Legions said...

LOL!, no doubt man, there alot of issues with the way this post came across to people, and in the future I'll be choosing my words alot more carefully. Painting is probably my biggest enjoyment from the hobby, but if you want to play in events sometimes there just isn't enough time to paint everything as well as you like.

Conspyre said...

John, I'll be interested in seeing how you fare at maintaining a coherent painting style across your Lizardmen as the army grows. My last several armies have all been the "And now I'm going to stick to this plan" army, and somewhere in the middle, something always ends up derailing it, new paints, new techniques, all sorts of things.


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