2012 was a great year for me, mini-painting wise. I have built up a lot of experience and motivation which I will certainly put to good use in 2013, but that's something for another post. First let's take a look back:
The audience of my blog keeps growing! The number of visitors has increased by 50%: 33 000 visitors as compared to 22 000 in 2011. The number of people who are following this blog with Blogger has gone up from 240 last year to 328 now.
The four peaks in the above graph are caused by event reports: Painting Crusade IX late February, Games Day Germany in August and then Scale Model Challenge and Crisis in October and November. The Games Day report was the most popular, but the number one page in 2012 is, just like the year before, the Cloud Backdrops. About one in ten visitors go here. I'm assuming there are a lot of non-miniature painters also using these backgrounds for photography purposes because in the top 10 search keywords there are 6 which are a variant of "photography background". The other four keywords which lead most people to the site are "corvus miniatures", "fantasy miniatures", "mantic elves" and "han solo". Especially that last one is a realy surprise for me. Of course I painted the miniature in 2011, but there's probably a ton of other pages about this Star Wars character... very strange!
The other social media platforms where I am also active gained a lot followers as well:
In total there were 60 blog posts. It has been very quiet in May and April with 1 and 2 posts respectively. The various Scale Model Challenge reports made October the busiest month with 10 posts.
After several years without any important victories, 2011 seemed to start a wind of change with a golden trophy at DUZI that year. And I succeeded in continuing this positive change in 2012, with two silver medals: one at Painting Crusade and another one at Scale Model Challenge. Another victory was achieved in the BaneLegions painting competition at WAMP, where my Ulric The Defiler took the special "Best Mood" prize.
I also painted my best rated figure on CoolMiniOrNot last year: Dark Vlad with a current rating of 8.8. It even appeared in the top last 7 days, which is quite an achievement in my opinion.
It was a busy year in which I visited six events. You can read all the reports on this page. I also actively took part in two events: Conflict and Scale Model Challenge, where I did painting demos. I got to meet a lot of interesting people in the community and made some new friends.
I started 2012 with a new feature on my blog, called "Best of" :) I expected that it would make it a bit easier to compile a best off list at the end of the year, but that really didn't help. There's not really something in the list that I would call "best of 2012".
Release wise I think this was a mediocre year. I remember Eden: The Game by Taban Miniatures being on of the highlights of the Crisis show I visited, and of course Games Workshop did another great job with some of their plastic kits (and the boxed sets), but apart from enjoying seeing jaw-dropping releases by for example Studio McVey, there have not been any must-buys for me this year.
On the other hand there are two miniature painters which have never ceased to amaze me past year: UK Slayer Sword winner Karol Rudyk, and his fellow countryman Łukasz Grzyb (C'tan). Both of them have put up a great show and their dark, high contrast and detailed way of painting is really an inspiration for me.
I had to resist writing "but in 2013...." several times in this article :) I will do some talking about this year in another post, writing down some of my thoughts and an event calendar probably.
All there is now is to thank you for being around for yet another year and I hope 2013 will be even better!
Here are three videos I recently did on YouTube. It's kind of an experiment on different kinds of sand to use for basing. In the final video I will show you how you can use sand and paint it up like grass.
Here are the links to the painted miniatures I mentioned in the last video: