Q and A with Scott Hockley

Hi I'm Scott from Colchester, UK. 41, 6ft tall, dad bod, GSOH etc, married with a 3 year old son. A painter and modeller who runs a window company in my spare time... Lol. 

How long have you been painting and what made you get into the hobby?

I started collecting minis around 1986, and got into painting more in 87 when 40k came out. I stopped when I discovered girls and clubbing in 89/90 and went off to university in 92. I didn't pick up a brush again until 1998, which I did for a couple of years, before getting sidetracked for a period by computer games - Championship Manager mostly! - I think that I got into display painting and competitions around 2007. I used to be more competitive about it all, but as time has passed, I've become more passive about all that. I enter competitions, and thoroughly enjoy winning of course, but if I don't, there are always reasons.
As far as getting into the hobby was concerned, I remember having Airfix planes, boats and dinosaur kits as a primary school age kid. I would use the enamels and make a proper mess, and those water slide decals were always fun... Also, I read the Hobbit and LotR before I was a teenager, and got into Terry Pratchett from the beginning of the Discworld, so I had long been into fantasy and the art. I also loved 2000ad and Marvel comics as a kid. Then when 40k first came out, that book was probably the trigger to really collecting and painting, plus the models painted by Mike McVey in the book were just the kind of thing that I wanted to do.

Have you ever won any comps? 

Yeah, quite a few now. I had won a few on line competitions in a couple of forums and got a few finalist pins at Golden Demon before I picked up my first (and only) demon, a Bronze, in 2009. Since then I've picked up a couple of second place finishes at Salute and just this year a first place in the fantasy category. I won best of show at the first WAMP event in 2011 and have numerous medal awards from Euro Militaire, where I also now judge. This year will be my third as a judge at Euro.

What brushes do you use?

Almost exclusively Rosemary & Co brushes. My needs as a painter have evolved over time and I have dotted around with Series 33, Series 22 and Series 323 as the brush of choice. Truth is that nowadays I use the largest brush I can for the job in hand, and only use sharp brushes for detail stuff. I'm not very kind to my brushes!

What are the three things at your workstation, you could not live without?

1) My Triple-Bright lamp - I had always used desk lamps with daylight bulbs, but they tended to give off a lot of heat, burn out quickly and not really give me what I needed in terms of a spread of light. This lamp gives me all of that, reduces the strain on my eyes, uses less electricity and gives off almost no heat. Plus, I use it for photographing my minis without moving them from my work space, even my final "studio" type photos.

2) Headphones - I used to DJ around London in my clubbing days, so I'm a bit of a headphone lover. I have a huge record collection, but I mostly listen to the media player on the PC. I listen to all sorts, but most sessions will be accompanied by laid back electronic stuff, and "sad, emotional" instrumental stuff. I'm really not into noisy metal music that seems to be quite prevalent among mini peeps. Occasionally I'll get the uptempo dance stuff going, but it can be distracting. I tend to use that more when I'm building models. Repetitive beats work nicely when sanding! lol
Also, I paint almost exclusively at night and my cave is directly next to my little boy's room, so noisy music wouldn't be conducive to a sleepy toddler, hence good quality headphones are a must.

3) Probably my actual desk - I decided to invest in a desk (Ikea) that could be very tall a few years ago. I'm reasonably tall and low desks I find cripple my back, neck and shoulders. So I have a high desk and low seat, which improves my posture when painting. I can't tell you how much it has helped my back in recent years!

Is there anything you know now that you wish someone told you at the start?

I think that I would have been down a slightly different path if someone had introduced me to shows like Euro when I first became involved in the more serious painting. I feel like I wasted a fair period of time chasing after Golden Demons because it was the only competition in the UK that I was aware of. I also feel like I wasted a LOT of cash on GW models that I didn't really like in the first place. I still have a fair stash of GW stuff that I'll never touch because I've fallen out of love with the company's models - their style mostly - and I have little time for the Golden Demons now because there just seems to be too much negativity about the results each year.

What is the last Modal you finished painting for your own collection?

Ah. Virago from Ilyad. A rare as rocking horse poo model that I painted in conjunction with another Ilyad model which I did as a commission. Honestly the two most wonderful sculpts which I poured myself into from the off. I had acquired her a few years ago, but had been afraid that I wouldn't do a good enough job on her. The commission was the kick I needed to get her done. Sheer joy... ^_^

Would you choose True Metallics or NMM?

Oh, NMM all day. I've painted almost exclusively in NMM for about 7 years now. I just don't enjoy metallics as much. I've tried various ranges and I can do true metals well enough, but they frustrate the life out of me, and I like the forced effect of lighting that I can get with NMM.

What is your favorite scale to paint in?

35 to 40mm. I know that's not strictly a scale - it's around 1:45, I think as a scale - I do enjoy 28mm and 32mm, and 54mm is a size that I'm getting more to grips with, but the 35/40mm size just feels in the right balance for the way that I paint - large areas not too large, details not too small, and you can get enough detail on a model without overcrowding it. In my own critique of my own work, my favourite pieces that I've painted are this size.

Do you use an airbrush and if so, what for?

I do. I have a basic Iwata Neo, which I use to prime and base coat with. I do some light and shade work too, and did a larger monster a few months ago where I used it quite extensively. I strongly believe that you should use the tools that make the job easiest. I HATE base colouring models, so taking the hours and aggro out of it makes airbrushing all the more attractive!

Do you suffer paintbrush envy meaning is there a painter out there who you wish you could paint as well as?

Not really. I have pretty decent control over my paint and brush. What I envy sometimes is the creative ideas that some top painters come up with - Roman Lappatt springs to mind immediately. I would love to spend a day inside their minds at times.
There are some painters with mad skills - Kirill Kanaev, Bogusz Stupnicki and Marina Ainagoz stand out for me, and Ben Komets in the last 12 months is creating witchcraft with his ridiculous techniques, but they are where they are as much through practice and putting the hard hours in as anything. That should be respected more that it takes a LONG time to become a really good model painter. Rare is the person that just picks up a brush and is insta-awesome.
My real painting heroes are the people that I have had the chance to spend time with, have offered me snippets of advice and are as pleased for me when I do well with a piece as I am, and have been over the years, for them.

Work By Scott

We would like to thank Scott for taking the time to answer some of our questions he was also nice enough to say he would be more than happy to answer any follow up questions people might have so if there is anything you would like to ask him please comment below and we will send them to him and get them into part 2 in 2 weeks.

In the mean time you can see his blog Here 

1 comment:

  1. I really like these Q&A! Thanks for taking the time to write it up, ask the questions, and thanks for the answers scott! Beautiful stunning work!