Sunday 13 November 2011

The Rev. Otto Witt - A Conversion

Many months ago when I started this ramshackle collection of thoughts and musings the intention was to document my first tentative steps into this most wholesome of hobbies by initially building  a collection suitable for gaming the Anglo-Zulu war of 1879. 

The long and short of it is that I felt it was high time to get back to the original concept, if only momentarily, and so here is my interpretation of the Reverend Otto Witt as portrayed in the film Zulu by Jack Hawkins.  Hawkins' portrayal of the tormented Witt was so superb if not historically accurate, and I knew that I wanted a fearsome, bullish character and this Victorian Gentlemen seemed to fit the bill.  Originally designed by Wargames Foundry to have a lady on his arm and a faithful hound at his side it was unlikely that I was going to need him any time soon so I wasn't too worried about getting struck in with the Dremel!  Firstly the top hat was rounded off and the brim was pulled down flat with a set of pliers.  If the truth be told, I was a little too forceful and managed to deform him a little, but it all helped establish the character!

Jack Hawkins as the Rev. Otto Witt
Original miniature
I decided to leave the dog's lead in his right hand, but painted it as a piece of rope or whip, however I did feel that I needed to add a little of the fire and brimstone alluded to in the movie.  To that end I cut into his left hand and positioned a scratch built bible there.  This was created by cutting little rectangles of foil gluing them together and then folding them over to create the effect of a book with pages; these pages were even given a gilt edging.  The only other addition was to fashion the bow tie into something resembling that worn on set.  Again fine slithers of foil, suitably folded and placed gave the effect I was looking for.

Bible & tie in place

I've got to say that I'm really pleased with how things turned out, normally I'm the sort of chap that likes to have very clear reference and instructions; 'special' my wife refers to me as, clealy a term of affection! 

I seem to have been sidetracked at every turn; there is so much out there that is capable of turning a chap's head, so to actually get around to finishing something that I set out to achieve has come as a bit of a boost.  Perhaps I should bear that in mind when I'm next contemplating somethinmg new and shiny!

Hawkins and Baker on set


  1. Nice subtle conversion excellent paintjob sir.

    Doffs hat :oD

  2. I lovely conversion and a great paintjob. Love the film and love the conversion.

  3. nice work! esp in the bible he's clutching. Very effective

  4. Thanks all, great fun to do and might have to have a go at doing his wagon next.

  5. Wonderful conversion and very nice paintwork. Great film too.

  6. Don't know the film but this sure is a cool conversion.

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