Category: Napoleonic Wars

Goodbye 2015, Hello 2016!

End of year means yours truly takes stock to consider the past year of brushwork and how to continue doing what one does best – painting some models! I’ll cover each of my projects one by one and ramble a bit. No pictures of models in this one, so if you’re the kind of fellow who looks at shinies without reading the context – check back later! Here goes.

  • Napoleonic French: I’ve added a squadron of Chasseurs and one of Cuirassiers, two line battalions and a couple of vignette models over the course of the year. It’s my first historical project, and it’s still going strong. Next year I’d like to get at least two further line battalions ready for duty, paint up more cavalry as well as horse artillery. There’s also Napoleon’s Berlin Carriage…
  • Vikings: My second project, and one that could almost be considered finished, were it not for the fact that I continue to collect and paint Northmen for the sheer joy of it. I’ve actually sold off a portion of my Viking army this year – mainly duplicates and plastics – and I might continue to do so, just to keep the collection fresh. In 2016 I have no immediate plans to purchase or paint new Vikings.
  • Flemings/Crusaders: I’m fairly satisfied with my collection, so much of the past year was spent filling in some gaps; priests and pilgrims, a bishop, etc. What I did paint a lot of were Maltese crosses, with a decent number of sergeants and foot knights being added to the army. In 2016 I’d like to get some more cavalry done for the army, but it’s fairly low priority.
  • WW2: My Fallschirmjaegers and Red Devils both received a decent amount of attention this year, with a couple of big cats for the former and a big gun for the latter. More bodies, especially officers, for both sides as well. I have plenty of models on the lead pile to carry over to 2016 and I will certainly be adding further to both projects!
  • Late Romans/Arthurians: I’m deliberately keeping this army fairly small – I’ve painted up most of the infantry this year, and I just need to finish basing one last unarmoured unit to be done. Cavalry wise I have a unit of companions and of horse archers to be handled, and then a small selection of artillery. I’d like to handle all of these in 2016 and finally finish a project for once!
  • Dacians and Sarmatians: These were sidelined in 2015, with just one falx unit being completed. I purchased some cavalry at Crisis last year but still haven’t gotten round to them, and I also received some Foundry foot archers from a gaming compatriot which have yet to be handled. In 2016 I’ll try and finish them, but interest is currently low.
  • TYW Dutchmen: Well, shit. Nothing whatsoever was painted for this project in 2015. Better get going again or it’s Ebay time!
  • 6mm WSS Catalans: No loving for them in 2015, but just before writing these words I dug them out of the lead pile to recommence work on these imps, so how’s that for progress? I have just one foot and one horse regiment done, and my projected force will count four of the former and eight of the latter, plus artillery and commanders. At the moment I have everything but the commanders in my possession, so whils I’d like to finish the project this year I’ll have to figure out how to get a hold of more Baccus stuff. I don’t think I saw them at Crisis ’15…
  • ACW: Painted a couple of ACW units in 2014, but lost interest in 2015 completely – I guess all those Prussian uniforms put me off Union blue! Perhaps I’ll pick up the trail again in 2016, as I did see good progress on the Black Powder supplement for the ACW. Who knows?
  • Fantasy & Sci-fi: As you might have noticed on the blog recently, Frostgrave has grabbed me firmly and won’t be letting go in 2016! I’ve dug out many old Warhammer models and made some additional non-GW purchases to complement them, and I’ll continue doing so in the foreseeable future. On the 40k side of things, 2015 saw – shock and horror – a new project in the form of the Adeptus Mechanicus, but this has fallen by the wayside a bit. I just find assembling these newer models so bloody tedious, as even the infantry models don’t go together without having to look at an assembly leaflet and match numbered parts. Still, I’d like to pick up where I left off in 2016.
  • 12mm Great War models: These were a fairly cheap purchase at Warcon ’15 of which I have painted just a third of the models. They’re great sculpts, certainly, but the scale is difficult – neither my tried techniques for 28mm nor those for 6mm work well. I’ll probably get these finished in 2016, maybe buy officers for both sides, then shelve them.
  • Scenery: I built a couple of items in 2015 but didn’t finish them off and, as a result, didn’t show them on the blog. I’d like to collect and build even more, but with the small apartment we’ve moved to I don’t really have the room to store an expansive collection. Choices, choices… So my pledge for 2016 will be to finish and preserve what I currently have.
  • Commissions: 2015 was a busy year with a lot of Prussians (I reckon around 200 of them?) and some Arabs thrown in for good measure. As always, I’m stating now that 2016 will of necessity be a year of fewer commissions and more personal work; we’ll see how long I’ll keep that up!

 

So that’s the main overview of my futile attempt at coherently outlining my painting work in 2016. As ever, stuff gets dumped due to waning interest or laziness, new purchases are made because I am a wargaming magpie who likes shinies, and whole projects get shelved for a year or more because I have the attention span of a toddler in a liquor cabinet. Nothing is set in stone!

Still, despite moving house and breaking my elbow, my year of miniature painting was successful. The figure below will tell you just how successful:

855

That’s how many figures I painted, with each cavalry model and vehicle counting as a single model, and artillery pieces having the gun and each free-standing crewman count as a single model as well; and this across all scales. I was going for 600, so that’s not too shabby, eh? For next year I’m upping my goal to 700, but as I did last year I’m counting in the 255 surplus models from 2015. I’m devious like that.

Two Crossed Dead Frenchmen Emblazoned on a Field of Dead Frenchmen

I’ve been waiting for the opportunity to use a Blackadder quote on the blog, and now was the time. At Crisis ’15 our club is holding a massive d’Erlon – La Haye Sainte battle using the Black Powder rules, and my French must be fit for duty. So I’ve finally built some casualty markers to that end, and here they are.

Models by Perry Miniatures.

Models by Perry Miniatures.

These are casualty models which come in one of the Perry Miniatures cavalry boxes, and I was fortunate enough to have six of these lying about on the plastic pile. Fortunate, because I currently have six battalions painted. I’ve mounted these on 40mm round bases and left a gap in the tufting to allow a dice to rest there snugly. They were painted in much the same way as their living counterparts, of course.

That’s that then! I hope I won’t be needing them too much during the battle, but if history repeats itself…

Other than that, I’m expecting to be able to paint up a French marshal model as well by the time the convention happens. Just two weeks away now! I hope many of you readers will be able to attend Crisis, and if you do, look out for us – we’re the Red Baron club out of Ghent – and shake hands with your humble servant. Come one, come all!

Marshall Vorwärts and his Comrades

It’s not every day a Napoleonic personality graces the blog, so harken! Those Prussians I have been working on for Henk for a while now finally have a set of commanders to lead them, with none other than Blücher at the helm. Let’s take a looksie.

Lovely models by Perry Miniatures.

Lovely models by Perry Miniatures.

I’m very glad to have been able to paint these models as they were an absolute treat – but you wouldn’t expect otherwise from Perry Miniatures, right? Just look at Blücher’s massive pipe! Reminds me of Christopher Waltz’ character in the opening scene of Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds.

I started off these models from different brown undercoat sprays, as I wanted to tackle the horses first. It was a toss-up between that and the usual blue undercoat, but I’m glad I went for browns. Lots of time saved.

The brigadier on the right somehow ended up looking like Ringo Starr.

The brigadier on the right somehow ended up looking like Ringo Starr.

These are focal models for the army, so I took more care with these models than with the ordinary rankers – an extra highlight layer here and there, primarily on the blue and the skin, makes everything pop just a bit more. Of course we’ll have to wait for the commissionaire to base them before their true beauty is revealed, but just look at those characterful poses!

That’s it for today! I have a final batch of Prussian musketeers which I’ll commence with soonish, but other than that I have a lot more material for blog posts which I’ll be covering over the weekend. So stay tuned, and auf wiedersehen!

 

Freiwillige Jaeger for a Friend

Still slaving away at the Prussians? Yup. I’m trying to get it all squared away before Crisis 2015 rears its expensive head and my lead pile gets an (un)welcome injection (depends on who looks at it, me or the missus) and I’m happy to say I can report significant progress. I’ve completed a total of 36 musketeers – which I won’t be showing you as they are identical to those fusiliers I showed earlier and so contribute nothing to the blog – but I’ve now also churned out some Jaeger. Let’s take a look at these.

Models by Calpe Miniatures.

Models by Calpe Miniatures.

Splendid models, these. The commissioner sourced these from Calpe Miniatures, a company I was previously completely unaware of, and I had a great time painting these up. The models are fairly broadly built but otherwise realistically proportioned as far as hands and feet go. I think they match up better with Warlord Games’ scale of Napoleonics rather than the Perry Miniatures’ battalions of Musketeers they’ll be fighting in, but they won’t stand out like a sore thumb at all.

 

The left hand company with its officer

The left hand company with its officer.

As you can tell from the bases I went with a green undercoat from Army Painter; other than that the painting process was exactly identical to that of the Musketeers – same colours, same application. These models took even better to my wash-heavy painting style, with their deep detail.

 

The right hand company with its identical officer.

The right hand company with its identical officer.

I used a chopping block as background because my big sheet of white paper is still at my parents’ house… but I thought the chopping block would be a great way of telling Henk what’s in store for these chaps once they meet my well-oiled French fighting machine in battle! At any rate, I hope he’ll be as happy receiving them as I was while painting them.

Last on the list for the Prussians this year are 24 further Musketeers and six mounted officers, including Blücher and his coterie. No more Napoleonics this month though – it’s time to recharge my batteries (12-pounders, if you’ll pardon the pun) by tackling some other stuff that’s been cropping up. I have one further update for you very soon, in fact. So stay tuned and hit that sexy follow button!

 

 

Prussian Fusiliers

Bit of an unusual post today, let’s get to the miniatures first so that’s out of the way.

 

All models by Perry Miniatures.

All models by Perry Miniatures.

The pictures have turned out to be fairly dreadful; I’m taking them in my new apartment and I’m still struggling to find the right light sources. Hopefully you’ll be able to see enough of the models to make a fair judgement of them. These are fusiliers – what the Prussians termed their light infantry – and they’re plastic Perry Prussians with metal add-ons and an all-metal command set. Great models, as per usual.

Bushy moustaches, how else could they!

Bushy moustaches, how else could they!

They were painted up identically to the Landwehr, with the exceptions of the trousers which were done in dawnstone. I also opted to use just one blue-grey for the rolled-up greatcoats so as to get more uniformity in there as compared to the Landwehr rabble. Overall I really liked painting these up more than the Landwehr, because a) red cuffs and collars instead of yellow and b) less white detailing to tackle.

So yeah, the new apartment. We’ve settled in this week, and I’m pleased as punch with the new place. We celebrated with some pasta I’d whipped together, and you can tell by our faces that I’m able to cook a nice pasta (even though the sauce does look like vegetarian’s vomit)!

20150815_20374120150815_203608

Also, I have this fantastic shirt on in the picture: “Summertime and the living’s easy”. I like the way it contrasts with my fractured elbow. On that front: it’s still swollen, and my chiropractor has to hurt me half an hour a day to get the joint back up to its normal flexibility, but there’s a slow and steady progress to report.

Anyway, I’m slowly handling more Prussians at the moment, although I have finished a Red Devil 17-pdr as well – that just needs its basing done. I’ve also put together a Frostgrave warband from my old and unused Empire models, and I’ll be painting these soon. We’ll see what materialises first. Thanks for reading and until next time!

72e Régiment de Ligne, 1e Batallion

Just a quick update while I’m moving house; the background for the photographs below is actually my newly dedicated Napoleonic section in our library! Work is still underway on the whole move and I haven’t been able to do much painting in the meantime, but by next week everything should be in order. Apart from my elbow, that is – still suffering.

 

Models by Perry Miniatures; plastics with a metal command set.

Models by Perry Miniatures; plastics with a metal command set.

It’s a bit of a mixed bag, this unit. Most of the greatcoated models are second-hand pieces which I received in return for painting my friend Kurt’s Dragoons and Cuirassiers a long while back. I kept the models in my pile until now as they were dreadfully mangled by thick white undercoat spray. Still, I managed to paint them up despite the loss of detail and I don’t think it’s all too apparent (at least, not in the pictures!). The command set are metal models, and I’ve added a sapper to spice things up a bit. Burly man in a bearskin and an apron wielding an axe = awesome.

 

A close up, rather unfavourable to my brush skills!

A close up, rather unfavourable to my brush skills!

These were actually painted a long time ago but it’s only now that I’ve mustered the courage to base them and add their flag. These are the first battalion of the 72nd Line infantry, part of Campy’s brigade in Bachelu’s division. The brigade was composed thus at Quatre-Bras:

  • 1st Btn, 72nd Line Regt (483)
  • 2nd Btn, 72nd Line Regt (487)
  • 1st Btn, 108th Line Regt (415)
  • 2nd Btn, 108th Line Regt (406)
  • 3rd Btn, 108th Line Regt (251)

However I’ll be composing my tabletop version in the following manner:

  • 1st Btn, 72nd Line Regt
  • 1st Btn, 108th Line Regt
  • 2nd Btn, 108th Line Regt
  • 6 pdr foot artillery

Less models to paint, you see.

That’s it for now, though! I have another line infantry battalion in the works, these will be for the 108th, but it’ll probably be a while before they come ’round the bend. I have plenty of commissions going and considering my fractured elbow… Anyway, we’ll see. Up next are probably some more Prussians!

 

 

8e Régiment de Cuirassiers

As said in my previous post, these guys were worked on painstakingly – not the detail I lavished them with, but the fractured elbow made it so! I went to the Waterloo bicentenary reenactment, and it reminded me I really had to get going on some Cuirassiers. Here we are then!

Models by Perry Miniatures, mostly plastic with a metal command set.

Models by Perry Miniatures, mostly plastic with a metal command set.

I mixed a metal command set in with plastic troopers, and I did convert the standard bearer into a regular trooper by putting a sword in his open hand. Not a perfectly executed conversion, but it gets the job done (he’s the one in the front left).

Plenty of dynamic posing to be done with these chaps.

Plenty of dynamic posing to be done with these chaps.

For the horses I used a range of coloured sprays from GW and Army Painter, whereas I used a blue undercoat on the troopers, with the exception of the musician who received a green one. There’s not much uniform colour on these guys, but by now I’m used to this kind of process so why change it.

 

Yellow turnbacks - not my favourite colour...

Yellow turnbacks – not my favourite colour…

Plenty of detailing after that, but nothing too special. I painted them up as the 8th regiment, which was really my only choice for the unit; the other which is mentioned in the Quatre Bras OOB, the 11th, allegedly fought without their cuirasses. If anyone can point me to suitable cuirassiers-sans-cuirasse models, please tell me in the comments!

These lads here proved murderous in our last battle with the Waterloo Warhammer Historical ruleset; I split them up into two separate smaller units and one rode down a Redcoat battalion in line while the other smashed a British Dragoon unit to pieces. C’est magnifique!

That’s it for now – more Napoleonics close around the bend. I’ve completed some Prussian fusiliers for my friend Henk, and I’ve finally based a fifth line regiment for my French. Stay tuned, citoyens!