CoolMiniOrNot: HotOrNot site for sculpted, painted miniatures

CoolMiniOrNot is a Hot-or-Not site for miniature sculptors and painters, featuring endless (and endlessly fascinating) miniatures, many of them hand-made as well as hand painted. The quality of work on the best of them is nothing short of breathtaking. I've started painting minis for the first time in twenty years and I'm humbled by looking at this site. Link (Thanks, Reyo!)


  1. I’m a hopeless WH40k geek and this site is like porn for me: endlessly fascinating, yet depressing b/c I know my minis will never look this good.

    OTOH, some of it really sucks and is a big ego boost for me.

    I’m still too chicken to put any of my stuff up.

  2. It’s been over 20 years since I obsessively purchased Ral Partha figures with my allowance money. This site is like some drug pusher lurker behind a corner and offering me a free taste.

  3. Ha, I was going to mention this site yesterday with your Foglio post, but I knew someone would bring it to your attention.

    A couple years ago I picked up the brushes again after about 8-9 years… it’s like riding a bike, it comes back really quick. Looking forward to Cory’s pics. I don’t really game with them, I just find the process itself endless engaging; I can attain a great Flow state (see Csíkszentmihályi) with attuned acute focus for hours at a time. The hobby is great for stress relief, if you’re wired a certain way…

    Here’s some older stuff of mine on CMON, although I really need to update my account with my more recent works:

    And don’t be intimidated by the works on there, Cory: The site is international, with pretty much all the top dogs in the field uploading to the site.

  4. @ #1 Gene: I get the same conundrum over my comics: I know exactly the sort of talent I’m up against, and it’s bowel-chillingly impressive compared to my amateurish attempts as yet. But on the other hand, there are people who seem like they’d not be out of place on the bulletin board of a fourth grade classroom who are somehow prospering, so really, how tough can it be? Damn confusing, that. At least I suspect you’re not trying to make a career out of painting miniatures, so feel free to screw up as badly as you like.

  5. Ah, I miss my mini-painting and collecting days. It was BattleTech minis for me. I’ve got a couple boxes full of all my mini stuff hanging around, planning to pull them out when I have more space… and time… and money because I will inevitably end up buying more. I was never very good at it, really, but I didn’t care because they were MY creations. I did buy a few very nicely painted and decaled minis of my favorite Mechs, though.

    Oh, and Ral Partha is now Iron Wind Metals.

  6. Yay. God I miss white dwarf, even if it descended into little, more than really pretty pictures. They were SO. PRETTY.

    Yeah, total nerdgasm here as well.

  7. For a short time, mid/late 90s, I was painting stuff that looked good on a gaming table. Nowhere near show quality, but the characters had eyes and there was some shading and such. I’d steal unpainted plastic minis from classmate’s monitors and desks and return them painted.

    A few years later I thought I’d finish painting a a bunch of Star Guard minis, just so I’d have complete units to sell when I finally grew up and decided to shed all my geek stuff. And I couldn’t even manage to meet my average efforts. My eyes and coordination had gone south.

    Now I hear that most gamers don’t paint at all anymore. They buy pre-decorated collector packs.

    It’s nice to see that some people still do their own.

  8. Been painting about 8 years now, been a big fan of Both BoingBoing & CMON

    it’s awesome to see one of my favorite geek-sites profiled on BoingBoing THANKS!!

    Don’t miss the Articles section LOTS of great tips in there.

  9. I bought CMON’s pdf compendium of their help section. Some good stuff in there.

    @STEFAN: I can’t completely hold the pre-made stuff against people. True, for me, that I spend *way* more time painting than playing, and enjoy it. But there’s been some fatigue lately with that ratio (I’ve been wanting to play more than paint).

    A good buddy of mine and main gaming competitor wins Golden Demons (!). He’s super talented:

    Painting minis knowing I’m going to be playing with him is scarier than posting a pic on CMON. He’s really encouraging, though.

  10. One of the great things about CMON is that it’s not affiliated to any particular miniature company so you get a whole range of different figures. Keep your eyes out for stuff from smaller companies like Hasslefree, Heresy, Spyglass, Black Scorpion, Copplestone, Olley’s Armies, Freebooter and the like rather than the ubiquitous GW stuff. You’ll find some cracking figures on their websites or after a bit of rootling around ebay. They’re particularly good if you paint for the fun of it, like I do, rather than as an army builder. Small independent miniature companies, like micro-breweries and beer, probably do the finest minis, and the ones I’ve mentioned are second to none for service all over the world, so be aware if you’re looking for something special. They run to fairly tight margins, especially up against the bigger companies. Support your local indy producer ;)

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