Friday 28 September 2012

Kiss my Quatre Bras!

On the afternoon of the 16th June, 1815 a troop of French Lancers burst through the shoulder high crops, that grew around the strategic crossroads of Quatre Bras, smashing into the back of the 'Black Watch' who were still formed in line in readiness to face the enemy infantry. The courage and fortitude of the men of the 42nd Highlanders must have been herculean, for not only did they withstand the charge, but formed square so quickly and precisely that a good many Lancers were trapped inside – not an enviable place to be when faced with four lines of ferocious and somewhat peeved Scotsmen!

Now I keep trying to tell my good friend, the ‘Provost Marshal’ that this Napoleonic era nonsense will never catch on in respect to wargaming, but try as I might he continues to squander my advice choosing instead to continue his unabashed love affair with the era, in particularly the uniforms of those ‘oh-so-dashing’ French; so what better birthday gift, thought I, than painting up something ‘elegant’ and Napoleonic just for him!

These ‘Northern Gents with questionable manners’ are from ‘Westfalia Miniatures’ and are sculpted by none other than the very talented Mr. Hicks – who does seem to feature quite heavily here at ‘28mm Victorian Warfare’.  As soon as I saw them on Kawe’s brilliant ‘Gro├čbeeren 1813’ I just had to have them, admittedly they are not ‘elegant’ per se but they are certainly Napoleonic and add just the perfect touch of irreverence to a birthday gift!

A little touch of terraforming, using some off cuts of blue foam board and a piece of the fencing from the Perry’s farmhouse set, hopefully helps to convey the impression of those shoulder high crops around the cross roads on that fateful afternoon .

Before & After

All that remains to do is to wish the ‘old fella’ a very Happy Belated Birthday! 

Wednesday 26 September 2012

58th (Rutlandshire) Regiment

I've managed to complete another four of these splendid miniatures form 'Empress Miniatures' and what a joy they were to paint.  There is something about Paul Hicks' work, particulalry his recent work, that really does eleviate him into the top bracket of historical miniature sculptors - in my humble opinion anyway.

Tried a couple of new things out on these, the first a slightly different palette for the trousers, in this case Vallejo Dark Sea Blue, followed by Dark Prussian Blue and finally Prussian Blue for the highlights.  The second being a little distressing on the black leather ammunition pouch.  There were some reenactors at Euro Militaire the other day and I noticed that where the black leather was worn and cracked it appeared to have a light brown tinge to it - yes I know this is sad, but I couldn't help but wonder if this could be achieved in paint.  The pouch was given a liberal coating with the wonderful Vallejo Black Brown, then I just highlighted the edges first with Foundry Spearshaft Shade then Spearshaft Light.  Not sure it is completely there yet, but it might be worth persevering with.

Finally a group shot, showing progress to date; I might even have to think about rules soon!

Monday 24 September 2012

Euro Militaire 2012

Saturday saw myself and then 'Provost Marshal' head off to sunny Folkestone for our annual pilgrimage  that is Euro Miliatire.  Whilst this is primarily for your Military Modeller as opposed to your Wargamer there is always something to be inspired by.  This year's competition entries seemed to be of an even higher standard than that of the previous year's (if that was possible!) with much more emphasis being placed on the basing.  You can but marvel at the skill on display and I often find myself torn between inspiration and despair in equal measures.  

Althoug almost impossible to pick a favourite, I did love the dioramas and vignettes; there were even some 28mm miniatures on show!  In the end I just photographed anything that caught my eye and have published some below for all to enjoy.  Sadly, I didn't jot down the names of the owners, but my goodness they were fabulous.

I had told myself that I wasn't going to buy any models this year, looking instead to just pick up some basing materials and tools, but oh know, the 'Provost Marshal' had other ideas!  A couple of days before the show, he sent me a link to the 'Tommy's War' website.  Some might remember that last year I had picked up one of their wonderful First World War models, well this year they launched another range, 'Deeds that Thrill the Empire'.   The first model being a vignette of the battle of Spion Kop and for reasons that I will be going into more depth later, I just had to have this impressive looking set.  A huge thank you to the 'Provost Marshal' for getting us safely there and back in time for some liquid refreshment.  

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