Tagged: painting

Carthaginian War Elephants

Through some not-so-subtly-dropped hints I got a few superb presents for my birthday. One of these was a copy of the WAB supplement Hannibal and the Punic Wars which she managed to find cheaply on Ebay, and, well, what’s the first word that comes to mind when you think of Hannibal?


These are the new plastic elephants from Victrix ltd. A great product – besides obviously being plastic and thus a treat to assemble, it comes with plenty of options for Ptolemaic, Roman, Numidian and, of course, Carthaginian versions. For me, that’s great – I used the linothorax-armoured riders with Carthaginian heads, but I can also use the Roman bodies in chainmail as veterans or Latin deserters, and the Numidians as allied infantry. Great!


I used the Little Big Men Studios decals as they are simply lovely – I can freehand, but not to anywhere near the level I’d need for this kind of patterning! A word on this to those readers who are interested in doing the same: It’s much, much easier to apply the decals before you affix the tower to the elephants. I had to cut down the decals on the ‘saddle cloth’ and had a lot of trouble getting the smaller ones to stick where they had to.


Other than that, painting was straighforward. The crew were painted identically to my other Carthaginians (more news on those soon, I hope), but the elephants were, naturally, rather a different matter. I drybrushed a dark grey and then a middle grey over a black undercoat. This looked crap, so I went in with the middle grey again but applied it as a layer highlighted, in angled streaks so as to get the right skin texture. The edge of the ears received a small layered highlight of medium skin tone applied directly over the grey, before everything was washed agrax earthshade.

Overall I had a great time painting them, even though it took nearly a month of on-and-off work! Right before they were done I already played a WAB battle with them, and they were quite effective. WAB is the reason why I decided to base them on 50x50mm bases; for those games which specify a unit breadth of 12cm I’ll prepare a bare 20x50mm base to put in between the two models.

There! Hope you like these as much as I do. I’ll have more Carthaginians ready in a bit, so there might be more Ancients on the blog very soon.

Ceterum censeo Duvel esse bibendam!


HYW French Foot Knights

I have had a few weeks of comparatively few results to show – which is strange, as it’s usually the case that I paint a lot but don’t manage to get the results up on the blog! The reality is that I have been working on several batches of models at once, and didn’t finish them up in due course. However, one batch is done and ready to show.


Although I had decided not to add any new projects to the lineup for 2018… here we go, promise broken in the first quarter. These models were given to me by my top chum Eddy who is really too kind. They came in a mixed bag – literally – of assorted foot knights, and for this unit I decided to pick out all of those with double handed weapons and some command models. There are shield-armed knights in there, too, but I’m looking at converting those to hold two-handed weapons, too – more suited to late HYW battles, when the shield had largely become obsolete with white armour having become the norm.


I based the heraldry of these models upon the actual knights who were present at Azincourt, although I didn’t get into who was where in that battle – so some models in this unit of foot knights might have rather fought on horseback during that particular battle. No matter!

After a basecoat of AP plate metal spray I used brown and blue washes, then lightly drybrushed a bright metal upon it to get the sheen back up, I then went in to get all the jupons blocked in, shaded, highlighted, added the designs, and so on. I think they came out well, but my next unit will be some plain crossbowmen with a white cross upon an otherwise simple aketon. Thank God the peasant wives couldn’t embroider anything better!

Hope you like these, but stay tuned… Something slightly bigger is coming to the blog this very weekend!


Hospitaller Characters

It’s the end of 2017, and another project has come to a close – huzzah! These hospitallers were actually among the first of my historical projects, being started up all the way back in – I think – 2012 with a box of plastic knights from Fireforge. I grew disenchanted with the models after having painted up just half the box’ contents, and the cavalry wing of the army has been neglected far too long, until this year. The rest of the cavalry will have to bide its time until it can appear on the blog, though, as the matter at hand is rather more interesting!


First up, we have the supreme commanders of the army – the grandmaster and a priestly fellow! Notice how I have tried to make them stand out a bit by using the idiosyncrasies of the figures – which are actually from Gripping Beast’s Teutonic range – such as the hair, the mitre, and so on. Colourwise I have added yellow to the palette, as white and yellow are papal colours. Stoving in Saracen skulls, approved by every pope since 1098!


Next up, these are two battle standard bearing types, predominantly to be used in WAB. As you can see I have used some leftover plastic bits from Fireforge kits to add some flair to these Gripping Beast models.


Finally, here are four other seneschal models. Most of these are from the Gripping Beast crusader command set, with one other stray Teuton (the one with the fur, of course!) added in. These have also all been modified to carry leftover weapons from Fireforge kits, as there is certainly a scale and style difference between the two manufacturers.


As well as painting dragging on for years on this project, rolling dice in anger with them is long overdue! So, to that end, my friend Flor is coming over with his Teutonic Order soon and we’ll duke it out using the WAB rules to see whether black with white accessories or white with black accessories is best. Groovy, baby!


Shadespire Orcs

Well, here’s more Shadespire stuff! I finished these a while back, but have now had the time to photograph them. It’s a very bleak day out here in Belgium, so the colours appear very washed out. Regardless, I wanted to get another blog post out there, so we’ll make do!


As ever, I wanted to do something a little different with the paintjob of my warband – especially as GW’s official yellow armour scheme doesn’t sit well with me – so here they are. More metallics, dark green lacquered plates, red cloth and spots of rust to contrast all of it, and of course copious amounts of blood effect.


These plastics, although unipose and push-fits, are very well thought out, so kudos to GW’s design team. I did end up sticking them together, though. I did consider swapping out their bases for squares so as to use them in WHFB or somesuch, but as the feet are moulded onto the bases themselves this was not an option. Oh well.


Still no game of Shadespire under the belt, though! It doesn’t seem quite to have taken off in my area as it has in many other places. Regardless, I’ve had a lot of fun painting these and the other models. I’m still on the fence about picking up the other expansions due early 2018 – that’ll depend on the models and the rules.

At any rate, I hope you liked these, and I’ll be sure to add to the blog soon enough. Expect a massive update soonish…


Sepulchral Guard & Hi, atus!

First update in a long, long time… What’s changed?

Well, first things first: The missus and I bought a house! We moved in a few months back and are finally getting somewhere with furnishing and decorating the place. The house will be 100 years old in a few years. and was renovated by the company that sold it to us, which meant most of the hard work had already been done, but still… Moving house simply isn’t fun!

However, I finally have a dedicated hobby room. I’ll be showing it off in a future post I think, but the obvious comforts I can tell you of is that I now have a lot more room for storage, and a modest gaming table that doesn’t need to be dismantled at the end of each wargames gathering (which, having moved somewhat closer to most of my gaming compatriots, won’t be as few and far between as before).

On the subject of my hobby work: I have continued to paint a good amount of models, too much to mention in this post. I”ll do a round-up post at the end of the year with some thoughts and ponderings so you can catch up.

Now, on to some models!


Like many people I have fallen into  Games Workshop’s latest man-trap, namely Warhammer Underworlds: Shadespire. The models are awesome, the price is attractive, and the game is said to be fun – I haven’t gotten round to playing yet. These undead sculpts I have freshly painted are simply superb, as you can see.


Over the last few years I have collected and painted a number of undead models, mostly to use in Frostgrave (hence the tombstone-turned-treasure marker). However, I have begun using a unified palette for all of them so that they can be used together for skirmish games such as Dragon Rampant and the like.  For this reason I have also opted to use regular 20x20mm bases – you never know when that WHFB nostalgia swings around again!


You’ll notice the distinct green hue to all the colours. I started from a bone-coloured undercoat spray, and after block painting all the colours I washed the models all over with Coelia Greenshade, and the silver parts with a second wash of Drakenhof Nightshade. After that I started highlighting the colours back up again. In this manner I ended up with a very cold-looking colour scheme. I’m especially satisfied with how the bone came out – it’s recognisable as such, but nowhere near the standard type you see on most models of the type.


The one thing I’m not 100% sure about is the fur on two of these models. I might go back over it with a select drybrush to try and turn it a little more grey. Not sure yet.

Well, in closing, I hope this post will still find some readers! I haven’t looked at this blog’s page hits or subscribers in a long, long time, so who knows… It was as lively as a graveyard in here. And on that stupidly apt remark, I shall take my leave. Tah!



Ghosts/Wraiths/Spirits/Banshees for Frostgrave

Just a quick update, but a much overdue one – it’s been more than two months since my last post! I’ve been painting plenty of stuff and a new article of mine will soon be appearing in Warlord’s newsletter; these things, rather than this blog, has been taking up much of my time. It’ll only be a short update, this – the food is on the stove and I’ve just come in from a quick jog, so I’ll have to keep it brief! On to the models, then:


My mate Flor and I have recently started up a Frostgrave campaign using the Thaw of the Lich Lord scenarios and random encounter table, and as I noticed there were plenty of monsters of the ethereal kind, I’ve gone and added a box’s worth of these GW Spirit Hosts to my collection.

First off: these are an absolute nightmare to build. The different ghostly tentacles have to be glued together at specific locations where they pass eachother, at very minute contact points which are not at all clear to identify. These joins end up being very brittle, and if you don’t line them up 100% correctly you’ll then have trouble gluing the heads on – the ‘hairs’ will start interlocking means the heads won’t fit. These Spirit Hosts are quite possibly the worst plastic kit I’ve ever had to assemble in my fifteen years of hobby experience.

Still, once painting got underway, I had a lot of fun. Over a white undercoat I basecoated gauss blaster green, then sybarite green, then kabalite green, but I applied these basecoats increasingly away from the face, arms and tips of the lower ‘bodies’, effectively creating a transitional effect from white to a middle dark green. The weapons were basecoated silver, and after this I washed the models entirely in coelia greenshade. Once dry I applied white highlights to the faces, arms and ‘tails’ to bring the detail back on them, and I applied a sepia wash to the skeletons on the bases. The sand on the bases was painted dark brown and then both the bases and the skeletons were given a white drybrush. It’s so simple, which is also why I like them so much I decided to show them to you.

I’d like to do more of these, but someone else will have to assemble them for me…



With my Late Romans so close to completion I’ve given in to the allure of another ancients project… the flesh is weak! Spurred on by the release of Victrix’ Iberian infantry the Punic wars are a hot topic in our club, and I am the only one to have chosen the armies of Carthage.

I’ve picked up a box of Victrix Carthaginians, which will form the backbone of my collection, and I’ve added a number of extra command groups from Crusader Miniatures as well as cavalry from the latter. Of course I’ve also purchased the Hannibal foot and mounted model; the former will be converted into a Libyan captain of sorts. Let’s get on with this post and look at the first unit!


The middle base has a bog standard Crusader Miniatures command group, those on the left and right are Victrix plastics. As you can see the Vixtrix models are slightly taller and certainly more active looking, but otherwise they fit in fine.


I’ve painted these over a red undercoat – I was expecting to paint them with a lot more red, but eventually I used a lot more colours on these to keep them lively. As a definite first I’ve used plenty of pictorial reference material, mainly in the form of a couple of Ospreys I managed to pick up on the cheap!


Traditionally I’ve always gone for freehanded shield designs, but I think I’d go mad if I tried to replicate the shield designs you see above! So these are my first Little Big Men transfers, and I’m fairly happy with how they turned out. Things were a bit dicey when I applied black wash to the shield boss, as some of the wash decided to run underneath some imperceptible bubbles in the transfer, so I did have to go in with some paint to tidy up afterwards. Other than that, these transfers do make an average paintjob look smashing!

That’s it for now. Sorry for the long hiatus (more than a month, ouch), I don’t have as much free time as I used to and I prefer to spend it on painting instead of writing about painting. So I don’t know when the next update will follow, but rest assured – I haven’t forgotten this blog!