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Author Topic: My modern streeet gangs (Franklinton Flippos added 6/10/21)  (Read 1435 times)

Offline mikedemana

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My modern streeet gangs (Franklinton Flippos added 6/10/21)
« on: March 30, 2021, 12:52:39 AM »
I thought I'd post a little about the modern street gangs that I've been painting for my Mean Streets: War in Gang-infested Cities rules. When I started painting them up, I was scrounging what figures I had in my unpainted bin that I thought might make an interesting gang. So, the miniatures are from quite the variety of manufacturers, collected over years at flea markets and conventions.

Later, I began to purchase miniatures specifically for the project. I'll start with my most recent gangs and work my way backwards. A note on the names of the gangs. I picked out a neighborhood of my hometown of Columbus, Ohio (USA) as their home turf. They are all fictional. My project is meant to be a somewhat romantic look at the world of street gangs in the vein of the 1979 movie, "The Warriors." So, without further ado, I present the most recently painted gang...


The leader of my Hispanic street gang, Julio, proudly sporting his gang jacket emblazoned with The Santanas' logo

THE SANTANAS

Prior to this gang, I had painted up nine street gangs as part of my Mean Streets project. Something was missing, though. I'd recently done punk rockers (Indianola Mohawks). I had a martial arts gang (Linden Daos), an African-American gang (Eastmoor Kings), motorcycle gang (Sons of Thor), and a West-side working class white gang (Hilltop Highlanders). However, I had no Italian or Hispanic, leather jacket wearing, "classic" TV gang.


Cruz has tattooed the gang's "S" onto his ample beer belly and keeps his leather jacket unzipped to show it off

So, as I sat looking at the remaining eight figs from my purchase from Casting Room Miniatures, I noticed most had obvious leather jackets. My original plan had been for them to be a heavy metal gang and call them the Head Bangers. However, the chance to do a classic gang with their logo emblazoned on the backs of their brown leather jacket was too good to pass up. I decided to go with a Hispanic theme, and remembering my high school days that rock guitarist Carlos Santana was popular, I decided to go with the gang name, The Santanas!


Margarita looks like she's been around the block once or twice, and "packs heat" to deal with those who give her grief

Once that decision was made, I realized I had a problem. Back when I began painting the Indianola Mohawks, I decided to be efficient and do the flesh tone on both gangs. I did them in a mix of Caucasian, African-American, and Hispanic. Oops. They needed to be ALL Hispanic. So, the first project was to darken up the Caucasians and lighten up the African-Americans. There are a range of skin tones with Hispanic people in the United States, of course, just like any other ethnicity. So, I actually liked how the skin palette, so to speak, turned out.


Intimidating-looking El Lobo carries his bat with him everywhere, always ready for a rumble

Next up, I made the decision to go with brown leather jackets over black ones. The Warriors in the movie of that name have brown ones, as (I believe) do the The Wanderers in the more light-hearted movie of the same name. What symbol, though? I Googled Carlos+Santana+symbol and scanned through the hits. There was the musician's trademark, swirly capital "S." There was also a few Hippie-trippy wings in the drawings, too. So, I sketched out Santana's swirly S with wings on it, and liked how it looked. Even more importantly, I was really pleased with how it came out on the back of the jackets!


Ramona takes no crap from anybody, and needs no weapons. She'll wallop you upside your head with her meaty fists!

I had an epiphany, of sorts, while painting The Santanas. And that is I simply must use my lighted magnifier when I paint details. I'd always been irked with how the tops of my paint brushed clanked against the mirror as I was painting. In a fit of anger, I snapped off the top half of my tiny, detail brush. Seeing the stubby, half-length brush, I shrugged and kept painting. After a few minutes, I thought to myself, "Heyyyy...this works!" So, from now on, I cut my paint brushes in half! As a first proof of the effectiveness of this, I think the Santanas logo turned out as good.


Mańana's figure began life as a hippie protestor, but I turned him into something more menacing with jewelry chain

Two of the seven figures I was painting did not have leather jackets, though. One of them appeared to have a sleeveless "wife beater" -- sometimes called a muscle shirt. I used paint to turn that into a leather vest, instead. The other was too obviously a t-shirt to do anything with. So, on of the gang members isn't wearing his leather jacket. So, I painted the logo on the back of the shirt, instead. I was tempted, for a moment, to paint Santanas on the front. Then I realized that I am not that skilled to do so. Not even close! The figure has a Rastafarian style haircut, headband, and actually turned out to be one of my favorites from the gang.


Jeffe's sleeveless t-shirt was morphed into a leather vets, and I added a knife to turn the peace sign into V for Victory!

I haven't talked about the actual REAL first step, yet -- silly me! Modifying the figures from Tedious Hippie Scum, one of the packs I bought, (https://www.castingroomminiatures.com/collections/street-fighters/products/street-fighters-tedious-hippie-scum) or Leather Gals and Boys, the other, (https://www.castingroomminiatures.com/collections/street-fighters/products/street-fighters-leather-gals-and-boys) into a mostly-armed street gang. The Leather dudes I didn't have to do anything to at all -- bare-bellied Cruz already had a chain, El Lobo carried a baseball bat, Margarita concealed her pistol, and Ramona and Julio brandished their fists. The two hippies needed modification, though. Jeffe was given a knife in his right hand (I guess the two fingers doesn't mean peace, it is "V" for Victory!). I modified Mańana by giving him a length of jewelry chain between his outstretched hands. I was very happy with how it turned out.

In fact, I was incredibly happy with how The Santanas turned out. This will be my last gang for awhile. I now have ten, which is more than enough for the games I'll be running (whenever we get to meet in person to run games again!). Hope you enjoyed The Santanas!

Mike Demana
http://leadlegionaries.blogspot.com/
« Last Edit: June 12, 2021, 12:17:57 AM by mikedemana »

Offline Deserter

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Re: My modern streeet gangs
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2021, 11:29:31 AM »
Lovely work on these - the thought that's gone into each of them really shines through!

Offline mikedemana

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Re: My modern streeet gangs
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2021, 02:30:42 AM »

The Indianola Mohawks take over the local gas station

Next up in my thread detailing my street gangs for Mean Streets: War in Gang-infested Cities is the Indianola Mohawks - my punk rocker gang.

While researching the names of manufacturers who make 28mm miniatures that would be good for street gangs, I came up on Casting Room Miniatures (https://www.castingroomminiatures.com/). Even though I felt that I had enough street gangs already to run my game, I couldn't resist buying three of these packs. They covered types of gangs I didn't have already, and the figures had lots of characters. So, I ordered them from England, wondering how much extra time they'd take with the Coronavirus lockdown.


Iggy and Julius look around for some civilians to harass and intimidate - I love the hairstyles on these figures!

To my surprise, they arrived within two weeks. The three packs I bought were Street Scumbags, Leather Gals and Boys, and Tedious Hippie Scum. With only five figures to a pack, I decided to break them into two gangs -- punk rockers and heavy metal heads. I split the Hippie Scum bag up, two to each new gang, and filed away the remaining placard-carrying figure for another day.


Ian toasts the gang overrunning the station, while Kira gets annoyed at some girl giving her the stink eye

The Street Scumbags would form the nucleus of the punk rocker gang, which I chose to call the Indianola Mohawks. Indianola is a street running alongside OSU campus, north of downtown, and seemed a good neighborhood to locate a gang. Mohawks, well, many of the figure had mohawks, and Indian, Indianola...get it? I did some Google searches to come up with a gang logo, and settled upon a skull with sunglasses and a red mohawk. I also did lots of searches on punk clothes, hairstyles, and t-shirts.


I love how Maybel's blue hair came out, and Sid is a classic looking punk, spoiling for a fight

I really liked the Casting Room Miniatures. I did have to give most of them weapons. I took snippings of lead spears flattened with pliers for knives, a wire spear with no spearpoint for iron rods, and jeweler's chain for, well, a chain! I really like how the weapons worked into the figures, and felt they looked natural with the poses. My favorite was how the hippie girl who was holding her hands in the air worked perfect for stretching a chain over her head. In fact, she ended up being one of my favorite figures from this gang!


Tattoos, piercings, and bright punk rocker hair made the Casting Room minis come to life

After looking at images online, I decided all the punk rockers would wear black, with a brighter accent color. The leather jacks and vests would be black with bright silver zippers or studs. The t-shirts, vests, jackets, and Maybel's skirt would get gang logos on the back. However, the t-shirts looked too plain with nothing on the front. So, I looked up punk bands and then added those names to "punk" "tshirt" searches. I picked out the easiest to paint -- a Public Image Limited logo, Dead Kennedys symbol, and Black Flag's logo.


The gang swarms the WizKids prepainted gas station accessories

I spent a lot of time decided on hair colors, too. Bizarre hair has always been one of punk rock's most noticeable icons, so I wanted to do it up right. My favorite turned out to be Iggy's rainbow effect mohawk. I also really like how Maybel's blue hair came out, too. Once I was finished with the t-shirt logos, I decided to go ahead and give them tattoos, as well. I'm happy with how all the extra stuff I painted on these turned out.


Iggy and Sid check out the Service Entrance to my Sarissa Precision MDF gas station

When it came time to take pictures of the gang, I decided to set up a recent purchase of mine. I am trying to support the brick and mortar gaming stores in the area. One avid supporter of the wargaming scene is Fun Factory Hobbies in Mt. Gilead, north of Columbus. I messaged him on Facebook, and he patiently went through what he had that I might be interested in. I ended up buying the WizKids 4D Gas Station from him. It contains 25 pre-painted pieces, such as pumps, ice and soda machines, propane tank, trash cans, air pump, and more. I may go back and add yellow trim on the pumps so they match my MDF shell station, but these images are straight out of the box.


Helping themselves to a little ice and soda...

Mike Demana
http://leadlegionaries.blogspot.com/
« Last Edit: April 06, 2021, 02:32:32 AM by mikedemana »

Offline Cat

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Re: My modern streeet gangs (Indianola Mohawks added 4/5/21)
« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2021, 05:43:38 PM »
Very nice terrain too!
 
I've been pondering the possibilities of gas station when I get to city building — I've found some 1/64 1970s style pumps to start with.

Offline mikedemana

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Re: My modern streeet gangs (Indianola Mohawks added 4/5/21)
« Reply #4 on: April 10, 2021, 10:56:20 PM »
Thanks! I found the Sarissa Precision building very nice and easy to put together. I did NOT use the pumps that came with it, though.

http://leadlegionaries.blogspot.com/2019/07/mdf-gas-station-for-my-28mm-urban.html

Mike Demana
http://leadlegionaries.blogspot.com/

Offline Cat

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Re: My modern streeet gangs (Indianola Mohawks added 4/5/21)
« Reply #5 on: April 10, 2021, 11:33:19 PM »
That does look like a nice kit, but also more modern image than the "sometime in the 70s and no one around here drives new cars" period I'm aiming for. 
 
I've collected a bunch of 1/64 cars from EBay that are mostly 67-72.  And Greenlight's Ace Ventura's 72 Monte Carlo ain't exactly a newer model car.  lol

In the mail now is a Johnny Lightning Texaco diorama with a 65 Chevy pickup, very nice 60s pumps, and a station front facade that looks proper for an uptown location.  60s pumps are a closer look to 70s ones than the more modern styles.  I'll probably wind up scratchbuilding the rest of the station to go behind the front wall.

[edit: and I've come across photos of the 60s style still in use in the 70s]
« Last Edit: April 11, 2021, 02:06:45 AM by Cat »

Offline CookAndrewB

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Re: My modern streeet gangs (Indianola Mohawks added 4/5/21)
« Reply #6 on: April 19, 2021, 07:49:19 PM »
I saw the title of this thread and thought "Nah... can't be THAT Indianola."

But I was wrong! Very cool. I grew up in Grandview, lived on Summit for a while in college. Of course, OSU's campus looks nothing like the place I knew. I'm not sure your ruffians would be welcome there anymore, but I saw plenty like them at the old Insomnia Coffee Shop or the Newport. Good times.

Offline mikedemana

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Re: My modern streeet gangs (Indianola Mohawks added 4/5/21)
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2021, 02:57:22 AM »
That's awesome, Andrew! Yep...check out my Lead Legionaries blog with all my different gangs and their neighborhoods. Your Grandview got an early influx of Nepalis in my world (Grandview Gurkhas).  lol

http://leadlegionaries.blogspot.com/search/label/Gang%20Warfare

Whereabouts are you located now?

Mike Demana
http://leadlegionaries.blogspot.com/

Offline CapnJim

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Re: My modern streeet gangs (Indianola Mohawks added 4/5/21)
« Reply #8 on: April 27, 2021, 01:01:14 AM »
My brother lived on Indianola, just south of N. Broadway, for years.  Hmm - I don't remember seeing anybody like these types.  Might have been a bit north of where they would have been... :)

Edit:  The figures sure look good, though!
"Remember - Incoming Fire Has the Right-of-Way"

Offline mikedemana

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Re: My modern streeet gangs (Indianola Mohawks added 4/5/21)
« Reply #9 on: April 29, 2021, 01:42:49 AM »

The Hilltop Highlanders ready for a rumble as they pass by the local basketball court

The next gang up from my Mean Streets project is the Hilltop Highlanders. This was the second gang I painted using miniatures from The Assault Group. They have quite the range of modern ne'er do wells, and are perfect for modern street gangs for my rules.


These miniatures from The Assault Group are some of my favorite ones I have painted in this project

The Hilltop is a neighborhood on the West side of Columbus with a somewhat rough reputation, so it was only natural that I locate one of my gangs there. The Hilltop was mostly working class white when I was going to high school. I thought I would play off of the "Hilltop" name and call the gang the Hilltop Highlanders. For their gang apparel, I thought why not paint their pants as trews (or golf pants, if you prefer)?


The Hilltop Highlanders patrol an alley in the "Mean Streets" of Columbus

The Assault Group figures have a lot of character, and these probably have the most. I did not like how any of my other figures I own mixed with them, so this gang has only eight figures, fewer than the 10-12 of my earlier gangs. For the trews, I decided to go a couple steps further than I have in the past for painting tartan patterns. I began with a deep red, drybrushed a brighter red. Next, I did a "window pane" of horizontal and vertical lines in dark brown. This is where I usually stop on tartan patterns, but I decided to add more. Next, came a thin, vertical yellow line in between the two brown ones. Finally, I added a dot of Kelly green at the intersection of each vertical and horizontal brown line. I really like the effect it gave.


The Cincinnati Reds baseball jersey will not go down in history as the best-ever paint job, but I like it!

Since the pants were the gang identifier, it allowed me to be a bit more creative and use more variety in their shirts or tops. As you saw above, I painted one as a Cincinnati Reds Johnny Bench jersey. Another had one of those blue down jackets that were so popular back when I was growing up. Others had leather jackets, and there was even one with a tie -- he must have a job that makes him dress up! The one with the scarf wrapped around his head gave me a pause. In this working class white gang, an Arab head scarf would hardly be welcome. So, I decided to give him a flag-looking one for a suitably patriotic look!


Side by side, the Hilltop Highlanders advance on a rival gang in a game of Mean Streets

Oh, and thanks for all the kind comments on my gangs! I really appreciate it.  :)

Columbus is a relatively diverse city, so I wanted to make sure I represented all "ethnic groups." I knew some folks who grew up on the west side of town, and it was definitely a blue collar area. So, the Hilltop Highlanders represent that part of the community in my tabletop games.


Closeups of a couple more gang members


Shaking down a church? Or maybe just looking for some money to steal from the collection plate...


I was pretty happy with how the red, white, and blue scarf came out on this gang member

Mike Demana
http://leadlegionaries.blogspot.com/



Offline Cat

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Re: My modern streeet gangs (Hilltop Highlanders added 4/28/21)
« Reply #10 on: April 29, 2021, 02:28:32 AM »
Great tartans and overall gang!
 
Sweet chainlink fence too.

Offline mikedemana

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Re: My modern streeet gangs (Hilltop Highlanders added 4/28/21)
« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2021, 05:52:58 PM »
Thank you, sir! As you can probably tell, it was a scratch-build. Here's my post on it, in case anyone is curious:

http://leadlegionaries.blogspot.com/2019/04/scratch-building-chain-link-fences.html

Mike Demana
http://leadlegionaries.blogspot.com/

Offline Cat

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Re: My modern streeet gangs (Hilltop Highlanders added 4/28/21)
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2021, 07:25:41 PM »
Ooh, thanks for documenting the first draft mistakes, that is always helpful!
 
—Ms. Cat

Offline CookAndrewB

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Re: My modern streeet gangs (Hilltop Highlanders added 4/28/21)
« Reply #13 on: May 11, 2021, 09:54:41 PM »
I am in Lancaster now. No longer in Columbus. Had to dig back a way to find the Gurkhas. My childhood recollection would have been more like the Grandview Guidos, being the home of the Columbus Italian Club (CIC) and all. lol

The Bexley Blockwatch and associated figures had me giggling. The leader in the jacket and cravat fit just about perfectly. I can also appreciate the Sons of Thor, but they need a Schmidt's Sausage Haus as their home base!

Offline mikedemana

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Re: My modern streeet gangs (Hilltop Highlanders added 4/28/21)
« Reply #14 on: May 11, 2021, 10:13:38 PM »
Thanks for going that far back in my blog posts! Yeah, I did a little time warp bringing in the Nepali immigrants (aka Gurkhas) back in my more retro time period. In the beginning, I was trying to do this entire project without buying new miniatures. That's why I chose those Old Glory figs and made them the Gurkhas. One of my longtime gaming friends lives in Bexley, so I could SO see them getting together and trying to kick the young 'uns out of their neighborhood. Funny, in our games, the old timers usually get beat down fairly handily...  lol

Thanks for posting. Reminds me I need to add in a new gang to this thread, soon.

Mike Demana
http://leadlegionaries.blogspot.com/

 

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