Fuck Off 2020, Hello 2020!


That’s the number of models I painted up this year. Quite a significant amount extra as compared to previous years, which of course has to do with the lockdowns. Indeed, during the first lockdown from mid-March to mid-May, I managed to paint up 199 models alone.

Here’s the run-down of the stuff I have going:

  • The Punic Wars: I painted a block of Carthaginian levies on holiday in Malta. Other than that, nothing was undertaken. Sad!
    Next year I’d like to make some more time for my Carthaginians and allies. I just acquired some Spaniards from Victrix, I still have some Gauls and Libyans around, as well as some Roman deserters. Out of all of these I’d like to make several Saga warbands for Age of Hannibal as well. One of these units or warbands will be lucky enough to be taken to my next summer destination!
  • Dark Ages Irish: Early during the first lockdown I painted up all the Footsore Irish for this project, as well as the Perry Irish for the Wars of the Roses which are an addendum. I now have more than enough for a Saga warband or for slightly larger rulesets.
    In early 2021 I am looking to bulk out the force for use in WAB with two boxes of Wargames Atlantic Irish. I also have a lovely mounted warlord from Footsore to lead the force.
  • Vikings: I sold off my first Saga warband some years back, but kept some of the other Vikings in a box. Then, earlier this year I, managed to acquire some of the newer Victrix Vikings on the cheap. I have this year painted up around half of one set, and improved upon my older paintjobs of the existing models.
    Next year I want to continue adding to the force, with some more Footsore character models. I have plenty of Victrix Saxons as well, and the idea is to make a composite Anglo-Danish force that can be split into two opposing forces for smaller games. I’m probably not going to be able to finish all of these by the end of 2021, but there is always the next…
  • Medieval Russians: I painted up the general and a small unit of city state troopers during lockdown.
    Next year, who knows with this project. I have two boxes of armoured infantry, from which to make dismounted druzhina with great weapons or spears, but the rest of the army is still absent. Probably at least until 2022.
  • Pike&Shotte Dutchmen: A small unit of six shotte was painted, and that’s it.
    Next year I want to add to this army a little. I’ve already begun gluing some more infantry together, and there’s a commander model waiting in the wings.
  • Napoleonics: Nothing this year!
    In 2021 I’d like to refurbish this army a bit, get all of it up to the same painting standards, perhaps look at rebasing some of them. There still is some unpainted cavalry which I’d like to handle as well, but we’ll see.
  • Union: This turned out to be one of my main projects this year, which would likely not have happened without the lockdown! The force as it stands is quite playable, but lacking in some troop choices.
    In 2021 I’d like to finish this army, but there’s still a lot left to do – about a hundred men, actually! Once these are squared away I will likely call the project done, perhaps with the exception of some more cavalry.
  • World War Two: Just the Frenchmen this year, but they were a lot of fun. Nothing playable so far.
    There aren’t that many models I’d like to paint in 2021 that I actually don’t own yet, but this is an exception; I’d like to expand the force with more French, Belgians, BEF… But not immediately. In other WW2 news, I still have some Brits for Burma from Warlord Games lying about, and these might get a lick of paint instead.
  • Warhammer: 2020 was hugely beneficial to my many Warhammer projects. I managed to all but finish my Vampire Counts, all but finish my Beastmen, and all but finish my Lizardmen.
    “All but” being the operative word, I am looking to finish these projects next year. There’s just a small unit of Centigors left, a block of Grave Guard, and the Lizardmen have some Skinks and Terradons left untouched. Easy!
  • Warhammer 40k: Nothing!
    This will be my very first project for 2021, in the form of the contents of the Space Hulk box from 2009. I’ll have had this set in my possession for the better part of twelve years, so it’s high time the models inside get a lick of paint! I hereby pledge as well to have all of its painted contents feature on my blog, so there will finally be some more content.

Perhaps the thing I’ve missed most is those regular conversations about the hobby. I have the advantage of being acquainted with some of the true nobility of the hobby – they’re all barons, you see – and it’s sad to have to go without our weekly gatherings. I fear things in that regard will never get back to normal. But on the upside, if it does, I’ll have lots more painted models to push around!

But enough about me. How about you? Unless you are a health worker or in law enforcement or or in the food industry or were otherwise chugging on – in which case, thank you for your service – What did you fill your oodles of solitary spare time with? Did you paint more or less than other years? Did you change anything in your painting habits or techniques? Did you start many new projects or did you try to take on your lead mountain? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.

Have a spectacularly safe new year!


  1. daggerandbrush

    Your turn-out is most impressive. I was not very successful quantity wise, but focused on a number of involved conversions and paint jobs on individual miniatures. So I improved my sculpting and painting skills, but did not get a whole lot done.

    • laurensvannijvel

      And that’s why I managed to get so much done: apart from those medieval Russians I didn’t engage in any meaningful conversion or sculpting work. Also, a good chunk of my output was A Song of Ice and Fire models, which come preassembled, and Perry ACW which have next to no assembly time.

      Still, progress is progress!

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