Looking good infidel305. The chequers are really cool, well done as they’re tricky to do. I too have found Army Painter paints a bit tricksy to work with, I’ve also had them be too watery and then dry out before I’m done using them
. Getting decent photos is a tricky business too, have a look at this
As for the bases, the design was copyrighted in 1992. They were used in many kits since then. Larger 32mm bases are pretty new I believe.