Sunday, 27 November 2022

Epics and more Epics plus more Macedonians!

 Another weeks commission work completed in the form of 2 more Epic Prussian infantry regiments for Tony2, 1 line and 1 Landwehr, each consisting of 120 figures in 3 x 40 figure battalions, strips cut in half and based on 20 x 30mm bases as requested. I am keeping the Landwehr coats (Litewkas) slightly lighter blue than the Prussian Blue of the line to represent the cheaper inferior cloth used as most references seem to suggest, as usual blue looks slightly brighter in the photos under the lights. It also gives a little more contrast to the overall look of the Prussian army. Prepping up today 20 French Guard lancers for the Dutch (Polish already painted), 2 x 3 gun Prussian artillery batteries and a couple more mounted officers to finish this months batch.

Total painted figures so far toward this large commission will be:

6 x 120 figure infantry regiments (18 battalions) = 720 figures.

French Guard cavalry, 5 x 20 figure cavalry units = 100 cavalry

2 batteries of guns (6 plus crews)

Mounted commanders.

Next batch will be dedicated to Prussian cavalry as I have all those from the Bluchers  Army box plus an additional cavalry Brigade box plus odd sprues to do. There are also 12 French heavy cavalry sprues on the way from Warlord via their Black Friday sale! Tony2 is going BIG on this project.

Thursday is scheduled for the start of another ACW brigade box for Noel, 300 figures plus a battery of guns, 7 days painting, then onto more 15mm ECW's for Graham so it's keeping me busy. December will see another 300 Epic Rebs for Chris in NZ.

The completed 2 WSS German regiments for Tony (Foy) were posted early this week but have yet to arrive due to postal strikes! Well packed though so will be fine but I'll be glad when they arrive.

My little foray into DBA using Essex Miniatures continues to tick along with the Macedonians almost completed. I have just another 8 Phalangites to complete the options provided and I'll be adding an additional Cav. element plus an Elephant which will allow expansion to Early Successor army. To be honest I really just want to paint an elephant! I also need some shield transfers for the shields of the Auxilia.

Meantime today I simply cannot resist starting on this 4 horse scythed chariot being the start of Later Achaemenid Persian army (33). Always wanted to paint a chariot but never done so I don't think.

Friday, 18 November 2022

Trying a different basing style!

I noted as I looked around at images of ancient wargame armies that many had bases far lighter than my usual style so for my DBN armies I wanted to try something a bit different. So I went back to good old filler powder! The dry filler was then painted with watered down Vallejo Flat Earth and then some trusty Japanese Uniform ( a must have shade that I use on a daily basis, perfect for a highlight mix into Flat Brown on horses etc), was blended in wet on wet. Very happy with that result but next I wanted to add some patchy grass areas. Traditionally I have always used static grass for this but decided to try a touch of Javis flock for a change and I'm really pleased with the overall clean and simple look. I might touch in a few grey stones on the rougher areas but will resist the urge to use tufts.

With 6 elements done I can turn my attention to the 24 Phalangites which comprise the bulk of the army. really liking the old Essex Miniatures again, some fine facial detail and very clean crisp castings. Service is second to none, I ordered the follow up Persian army on Wednesday, shipping confirmed Thursday with RM delivery confirmed for today, pretty hard to beat I'd say. I'll be using shield transfers from Essex on the shields, lifes too short for painting shield designs! The Persians look great and I will get to paint a couple of chariots.

I can see myself adding a different army each month as a nice little side project and while I'm not getting myself too excited about the gaming side I do see this as being perfect for my wooden card table painted and finished to match the basing, there is something about the sound of a dice rolling on wood that is very nostalgic in these days of fleece mats. 

New basing, so far in DBA terms, 1 x 3 Kn (with General), 1 x 3 cav. (Companions), 1 x2  light horse 2 x 2 Psiloi (archers) 1 x 4 Auxilia (peltasts) 1 x Art. (bolt thrower). Note: Base edges just need finishing.

Bit late to the painting desk this morning due to waiting for the plumber to have a look at the shower but time to crack on with the second battalion of WSS German boys for Tony having finished the first yesterday. Orange facings against blue coats (Dark Prussian dry brush followed by Flat Blue highlghts) is a pleasing combo. Next battalion has Red facings. Next week I'm back with Tony2 for 10 days of Epic Prussians, some line infantry and artillery plus the French Guard Dutch Lancers to complete the Guard cavalry.

Hesse- Kassel Infantry Regt. Stuckradt - a few heads of blonde hair for the German guys!

Tuesday, 15 November 2022

First 300 Rebs, Napoleonic ships and some Macedonians!

Some shots here taken yesterday of the first batch of painted  Epic Rebs for Chris. Hopefully you can see that I Have tried to vary the look between the brown/grey and the slightly more uniform grey with pale blue cuff patches, three of the former and two of the latter. They have had two coats of matt varnish. As Chris will be basing them to his own spec and adding flags I can call them finished. I will keep them in their units of 6 strips painted when packing. So that's 5 down with 39 more to go plus artillery! This commission will proceed at an agreed 5 regiments - 30 strips - per month, cheers Chris.

Next up and ready prepped for starting this morning are two 20mm WSS regiments for Tony, they look like Giants after the Epics! 

I have also been tinkering away on the Napoleonic ships in the evenings with the first two built and painted, .6mm holes drilled out for the rigging. In future I'll drill the models before painting but no damage was done in the process. Next step is to add the main standing rigging before adding the etched brass shrouds/ratlines and then the remaining rigging as described in the Rod Langton guide. Both ships are 'At Quarters' so no ships boats on deck - they would have been towed behind in action - the sail sets are 'Easy Sail' with Courses (lower sails) furled which was done in order to reduce risk of catching fire when in action. Just need to track down the recommended threads now and my wife is on the lookout for me. The resin sea bases will be improved once the ships are rigged with additional highlights etc.

Tiny holes 3 each side for passing the thread though for rigging.

I have also been enjoying myself painting a few Macedonians towards a DBA army. Lovely old Essex Miniatures, crisp castings. The bulk of the army will be Phalangites, 6 bases of 4 figures with pikes and shields should look quite impressive. Just a nice background project and I'll be ordering the opposing Persians this week. Going to keep the basing lighter than my usual style which should help to set off the colourful troops.

And finally, talk about it's a dogs life! Poppy certainly knows how to make herself comfortable.

Tuesday, 8 November 2022

Let's paint some Rebs!

I was going to write up a step by step tutorial for these being the first of the 60 figure Confederate Epic units for Chris in NZ but time constraints means a series of start to finish photos, as much for my own reference to be honest. Fast and furious method, especially in early stages with lots of controlled drybrushing followed by careful but fast detail painting and highlighting. I'm pleased with the finished look - they will be matt varnished - and hopefully Chris will be too! As always they look much better 'in the flesh' at true 13.5mm scale. No basing is required as Chris will be doing it himself.

6 Epic strips, 60 figures, total painting time just under than 5 hours including prep.


As I was home from work just after 4pm (!) I did a little more work on the  first of the French ships, the sail sets are now painted and ready to mount. Still having trouble tracking down a .5 or .7mm miniature drill bit for my hand drill so can't begin rigging until I can find one.

And finally - I have weakened and ordered myself an Essex Miniatures Macedonian DBA army to mess about with! Real old school 15mm's, I just fancied doing some shields and armour. I think that between the ships and DBA I could be quite happy for a few months. Been years since I painted Essex and decades since my regular Saturday morning trips to the Canvey Island factory/shop with the family including large Golden Retriever packed into our small car, soldiers purchased followed by a walk round the country park and McDonalds on the way home, great memories.