Thursday 22 January 2015

10mm zulu's started.

 I have started my Zulu horde. These are al 10mm Pendraken and Newline Design 10mm colonial Zulus.

They really were no fun to paint, not that they are bad figures  just that they are monotonous. So much brown and white. And not a lot of other colours at all. I could have painted the shields in different colours but as I want them to represent the tribe that attacked Rorke' s Drift, that tribal force only used brown and white cow hide shields. Pure black or black and white or pure white shields in various combinations were used by the main body of troops to attack at Isanwanda but as my mate Tim is building the drift it would be wrong to paint the shields different colours. At least at present as I need to get a few, quite a few, more done first.

Here is a second batch. My eyeballs were not quite bleeding just yet. So I decided to limit it to a mere 36 this time. 

All the figures are for "Blackpowder" and are mounted on either single bases (3 figures to a stand) or double stands (6 figures). This should allow me to adopt some suitable table top formations when a game starts. And also to fit neatly round any terrain that I need to. But I admit it's still a lot of bases to move.

I have several hundred more to do so I expect by the end you will be as bored of them as I am. So I am having a weeks break from them and come back to them next week. which means you can expect to see more in a fortnights time (I hope).

That's it for today's update I hope you are having a really good day. Take care and all the best from me.

Cheers Clint

Tuesday 20 January 2015

Anti-hero Lucifer.

Well the "Entrance Fee" for this years catalogue painting challenge is to paint base and send Curt an "Anti-hero". For doing this Curt will make a small dotation to a charity. So in a way we all come out of it as winners.

But I was struggling to come up with an idea for an anti-hero. I finally looked it up on google and they have a list of fictional anti-heroes. So I picked one I thought I would like to do. And inspired by one of my favourite artists (Gustav Dore) I selected Lucifer from Milton's Paradise Lost.

In the poem Paradise lost Lucifer is a charismatic, sophisticated erudite individual. Who believes that God has favoured mankind over Angel-kind. And as a result leads the angels into rebellion against God.

It was first published in 1667 and follows two story archs, one about Lucifer, the light bearer, and one concerning Adam and Eve.

 The figure is part of the "Lucifer's War" range of figures by West Wind Productions. To be honest it is supposed to be Gabriel but I thought it was a better figure than the supposed "Lucifer". I went for the typical black and red as I wanted the figure to be more menacing. If I had settled on white DOVE wings and not CROW wings the figure would look more Angelic in our contemporary view. Likewise If I had selected a blue palette for the clothes that would also look "wrong". So the colour choices were pretty much given to me by our current understanding of who and what devils and angels are.

As a 28mm figure this was a great deal of fun to paint. As mentioned above the colour choices were pretty much preselected so I started with a white undercoat. This was to allow the Red to stand out and not look dull. It did mean that I would have to paint a lot of BLACK though. The wings were painted 3 times with black ink over the white primer in an attempt to get into all the details of the feathers and yet leave the top edges slightly clear of colour. I did not quite work, but It did come close enough.

Other then the cloak the hair and the wings nearly everything else was metallic. So I used both gold and silver to offer some variation. I usually have problems painting gold but have found "ARMY PAINTER" to do an acceptable version of the colour I wanted. I did a top highlight after all other painting was finished with WH SMITHS poster paint gold as it is brighter and sharper. The problem with poster is if it gets wet again it is likely to run into any recesses. But as I was to top coat it all with thin coats of spray varnish I was happy (ok nervous) to risk it. For the silver I started with "Boltgun Metal" and added layers of Mithril Silver mixed in larger and larger amounts with the afore mentioned Boltgun metal and Highlighted with the silver again at the last.. Which is my normal way of doing steel.

The model came on it's own octagonal slotta base. But the pose it was very leaning forward and standing on a pebble. So I got rid of the pebble with some snippers and went into the garden and selected a flint of about the right size and dimensions. The flint was a food fit so I added cork chips around the base and painted the whole lot a random muddy brown. Added white to the mix and dry brushed to make the rocks look weathered. The figure fit the flit with no work at all, sometime I just get lucky so I superglued and green stuffed it in place and to hold it strong. And the jobs a goodun!

And below is Gustav Dore's Illustration of Lucifer from Paradise Lost. he looks far more thoughtful than the miniature which goes to show his many and complex sides.

That's all folks. Thanks for looking and take care. I hope to see you visit again soon. All the best Clint.

Sunday 18 January 2015

Civil War campaign start.

Yes we have at long last started an ACW campaign at the club. Foolishly I was appointed the Union General in charge while Tim is the Reb General. It is a fictitious campaign so don't go saying things which may or may not happen as time goes by. It is also a small campaign with both land and riverboat battles. And this is the story of how I loose the campaign.

The figures are Matts and Grahams and the terrain is also Graham who is the referee. We have set the campaign in a river valley in the "Eastern Theatre Mid war period. Using the Peter Pig "Civil War Battles" rules we went through the "pre-Game" and the Rebs were attacking the federal homeland. So the first game was a Union defence. Gulp!

 We, Peter, Matt and Myself had to set up first and as there were 3 objectives one of which was in the confederate starting area and the other two closer to our starting position we had to leave the right hand 1/3 of the board hanging open in the air. (Thems the rules). The Confederates took advantage of this and had half their force attacking that sector and cavalry attacking our left wing.

Above you can see the rocky outcrop which was one objective. Centre of the board .And our open right wing. Peter took the left wing and Matt the centre and guess who was on the right. Yeah me!
 Peters left had a lot of troops that did not arrive in time for the battle but would roll each turn to come on. The bad news is that due to the pre-game the confederates had cut the road and thus making the roll for reinforcements harder.
 I did have some troops to move into the open right flank. but I kept one unit in the farmstead as they had better cover there.
 Well that plan did not work, Scott and Gary sent three units against the one in the farm and then charged with a veteran Red Infantry unit. My troops thought better of it and ran away without much of a fight! They skidaddled so far and fast that they went of the table never to be seen again. (Maybe they will come back in the campaign and maybe they won't as I will have troops that don't run that need bolstering! Time will tell!)
 Peter on the left also had trouble. Because he had troops just arriving Tim was able to use his cavalry like paratroops and take an objective and try to hold it until his foot could arrive.
 I went marauding with my cavalry on the right. While the cavalry did take a bit of a beating they are only a raw unit I was able to tie up twoe of Scotts . infantry units and a gun battery in the process.
 Matt (my side) and Gary( the confounded Rebs) slogged it out in the centre trading blows in a tit for tat manner. This kept on all game with little give or take and it really was a slogging match.
 This is when my Cavalry broke and failed a morale check. They only had to retreat and not flee the table so I was quite content as they had kept Scott on the right flank busy for most of the game.
 Scotts Veteran Reb unit that had taken the farm were closing up behind my blue boys.
 My Federals were able to get one round of shooting into the rear of Scotts Infantry who had not recovered from seeing my cavalry retreat battered.
 Matt still slugs it out with Gary. Matt launches a charge and the charging unit is not able to push through. they get thrown back with lots of casualties.
 Scott gets another unit onto the rough hill objective but stalls just outside canister range. And they start to suffer because if I can't fire canister I will fire something else.
 Meanwhile on the left. Peter forces Tims cavalry to mount up and leave the church objective. Straight into Peters cannon which was able to fire canister! That dealt with half of Tims cavalry!

With a swift move along the road I was able to bring my union forces behind Scotts troops on the rough hillwhile I battered it with my guns and Matt brought a raw unit into the line (It had only arrived 2 turns before)!

And then the game ended. Victory points were awarded and the final score was Confederates 47 points Federals 46 Points.

Which means that I have lost the first territory in the campaign.

Next weekend at the club the campaign will continue as the rebs push further north!

Thanks for reading. I meant to post this yesterday but time just got away from me. Have a good couple of days and I will post again soon.

All the best Clint