Friday 19 April 2024

"The Infantry Of Prussia In 1806..."

"...Was 'a museum piece' reflecting the great days of (King) Frederick the Great."

This 28mm scale metal model is produced by “Wargames Foundry", and can be purchased as part of the identical eight-figure PN063 Infantry in Peaked Cap Marching blister. Sculpted by Alan Perry, this Napoleonic miniature has been patiently waiting its turn in my painting queue since I bought him in July 2023, and is hopefully destined to be part of a small Prussian force I can bolster either my French or Coalition army with as a scenario dictates.

The soldier was initially undercoated using a couple of licks of "Vallejo" Sombre Grey, and then essentially painted from the ground up following the colour scheme shown on the Nottingham-based company's website. Resultantly, I applied "Vallejo" Stormy Blue to the tunic and sleeves, and later darkened it down with a splosh of "Citadel" Nuln Oil.

"Pull. Pull. Pull."

I used a combination of "Vallejo" Heavy Red and "Citadel" Carroburg Crimson for the figure's cuffs, collar, cap band, and gun strap, as well as "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna with plenty of "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade on to his rifle and backpack. I subsequently squeezed in some "Vallejo" Gunmetal and "Citadel" Nuln Oil onto the model's metallic areas, such as his gun barrel, its bayonet, and the fellow's water bottle.

Lastly, I applied some "Citadel" Abaddon Black to the infantryman's boots, extra baggage, leather straps and epaulettes. To be honest I wasn't entirely convinced by this choice as the vast majority of illustrations I saw had the Prussians wearing white straps, and none sporting black shoulder pieces. However, I did read that the colour was used to designate Fusiliers within the army, albeit this 'title was honorific rather than implying a specialist or elite unit.'

"Wargames Foundry" WIPs - Three more Prussian Infantrymen at various stages of completion

In addition to my latest Napoleonic figure I have also managed to pigment another 28mm metal Roboman by "Black Tree Design". Available as Code DW127 Roboman from their "Doctor Who" miniatures range, this sculpt is based upon the Daleks' mindless minions from Terry Nation's November 1964 BBC Television six-episode story "The Dalek Invasion of Earth".

Primed using a mixture of "Vallejo" Surface Primer Black and "Warlord Games" Pitch Black, the miniature was heavily dry-brushed with “Vallejo” Heavy Charcoal and drenched in "Citadel" Nuln Oil. His trousers were then base layered in "Vallejo" Sombre Grey, shaded using some "Citadel" Nuln Oil, and roughly highlighted using a careful dry-brush of (more) "Vallejo Sombre Grey. As a final touch, I 'picked out' the Roboman's clunky headset and machine-gun with "Vallejo" Gunmetal and "Citadel" Nuln Oil.

Tuesday 16 April 2024

"I Have Spoken With The Nimon."

"I need no one to bring the sacrifices to me."

This 28mm metal model of a Nimon is produced by “Black Tree Design” and can be bought as code DW428 from their "Doctor Who" range. "A parasitic race who travel via artificial black holes between planets", these aliens were created by the writer Anthony Read and appeared in the December 1979 BBC Television science fiction serial "The Horns Of Nimon".

Promising "the Skonnan leader Soldeed the power he would need to make Skonnos a great empire again", the figure was primed with "Vallejo" Surface Primer Black and "Warlord Games" Pitch Black, before being dry-brushed with "Vallejo" Charred Brown. I then applied a wash of "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade over the bull-headed extra-terrestrial, and was a bit disappointed (though perhaps not entirely unsurprised) that it didn't have the same impact upon the miniature's skin tone as "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade did way back in 2017, when I previously pigmented a number of Nimon.

"Black Tree Design" WIPs - This Roboman is having all his layers 'picked out'

As a result I gave the evil destroyer of planets a second coat of "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade and whilst this was still wet, decided to apply some Nuln Oil over the brute as well. This still didn't darken down the brown as much as it had been on the other figures finished seven years ago, and with hindsight I might have got a bit carried away with its earlier "Vallejo" Charred Brown dry-brush. However, this particular sculpt could easily stand out as the race's leader, so I didn't let the slight inconsistency in colour demotivate me too much.

I next applied a double coat of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna to the Nimon's loincloth, and then followed this up with a layer of Gold and "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade. This area was subsequently dry-brushed with (more) "Vallejo" Gold, whilst the life-draining extra-terrestrial's eyes were simply 'picked out' with a combination of "Vallejo" Heavy Red and "Citadel" Carroburg Crimson. Finally, I painted the creature's horns with "Vallejo" Heavy Ochre, shaded them with "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade and dry-brushed the deadly energy-blasting weapons with (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Ochre.

"Crooked Dice Game Design Studio" WIPs - Three Alien Legionnaries

Sticking with "Doctor Who" and polishing off spare models I thought I had finished working my way through, I have found another Roboman in my "Black Tree Design" logjam. Resultantly, the mind-controlled minion of the Daleks was plonked onto a base, undercoated, and slowly had his trousers, shirt and hands base-coated.

Furthermore, I've managed to make a little more progress on three Alien Legionnaries by "Crooked Dice Game Design Studio". These science fiction troopers are cleared inspired by Emperor Ming's red-robed palace guards from the 1980 movie "Flash Gordon", and to be honest I was soon cursing both the film's costume designer Danilo Donati for all the detail he created for their gas masked heads, as well as the miniatures' sculptor for taking the time to so precisely replicate all the black trim on the models themselves - most of which need careful, precise tracing in "Citadel" Abaddon Black...

Friday 12 April 2024

"Early In The Thirty-First Millennium..."

"...The Galaxy is in the throes of the Great Crusade."

This 28mm plastic Space Marine is by "Games Workshop" and comes from the OOP (Out Of Production) Betrayal At Calth stand-alone boxed game. The multi-part model has been assembled wearing MK IV armour, and is another one of the ten figures I need to field my third Sons of Horus Tactical Squad for "Warhammer: The Horus Heresy."

The miniature was initially undercoated with "Citadel" Sons Of Horus Green, before I used a combination of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, Gold, and "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade on its shoulder-pads and anywhere else which I intended to be gold. I then picked out the sharpest edges and numerous rivets in (more) "Vallejo" Gold, before applying some "Citadel" Abaddon Black to all the knee-joints and elbow-joints, as well parts of their backpacks and Bolters.

"Wargames Foundry" WIPs - Four Napoleonic Prussian Infantrymen

I next treated the model’s power tubes and firearm to a little "Vallejo" Gunmetal and "Citadel" Nuln Oil. as well as plonked some "Scalecolor" Speed Metal and "Citadel" Flesh Tearers Red into each Space Marine's eye slit. Only once all this work was finished did I shade all of the MK IV armour with "Citadel" Nuln Oil, and dry-brush it with (more) Sons Of Horus Green. Lastly, I attached a couple of the numerous decals found on the "Games Workshop" Sons of Horus Legion transfer sheet onto the shoulder-pad and lower-leg.

With almost half of my latest Sons of Horus infantry squad now 'varnished and flocked', I've decided to tackle four figures taken from the blister PN063 Infantry in Peaked Cap Marching by "Wargames Foundry" in order to bolster my burgeoning collection of 28mm painted Napoleonic soldiers. This quartet of Prussians were admittedly predominantly bought due to their 'official' paintjob showing their uniform as having black straps (as opposed to white) - so I thought they might be a bit easier to pigment than normal.

"Black Tree Design" WIPs - This Nimon has had all its details base-layered

To be honest though, I'm still in two minds as to whether to stick with the black leather belts as I've not seen that many illustrations of Prussian infantrymen wearing them - albeit my limited "Google-Fu" research has suggested the colour was actually worn by the army's Fusiliers; all twenty-four battalions of them in1806. Regardless of any future decision, I've primed two in "Vallejo" Sombre Grey, and another pair using a mixture of "Vallejo" Surface Primer Black and "Warlord Games" Pitch Black, to help establish which provides the best (and by that I mean quickest) base-layer to work up from.

I also can't seem to shake my infatuation with "Black Tree Design" and their "Doctor Who" range, despite recently completing some decidedly ill-defined sculpts of their Cybermen and Mechanoids. This Nimon though is a great model, and emerged from amidst my significant backlog whilst I was hunting around for some 'quick-win' projects. I had thought I'd powered through all these extra-terrestrial parasites way back in 2017. But clearly I missed one...

Wednesday 10 April 2024

"A Number Of Cyber-Scouts That Patrolled The London Underground..."

"...Were painted black, making them nearly invisible in the dark tunnels."

This 28mm metal model is sold by "Black Tree Design" as DW533 - Cyberman Firing from their "Doctor Who" miniatures range. Responsible for killing at least two workmen who were inspecting a London sewer, this figure is based upon the reconnaissance cyborg seen in Paula Moore's 1985 television story "Attack Of The Cybermen".

Undercoated using my usual mixture of "Vallejo" Surface Primer Black and "Warlord Games" Pitch Black, the Stealth Cyberman or Cybertrooper was subsequently given a dry-brush of "Vallejo" Heavy Charcoal and drowned in "Citadel" Nuln Oil. I then, having sought some inspiration from the paint scheme used on the cyber-gun for the 1:16 scale figurine by "Eaglemoss", pigmented the miniature's hand-weapon using a combination of "Vallejo" Bromze and "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade, as well as "Scale 75" White Alchemy and "Citadel" Flesh Tearers Red for its energy ring.

"The infantry during the Napoleonic era..." 

With so straightforward a project, I have perhaps unsurprisingly also finished another of my Napoleonic Frenchmen by “Wargames Foundry". One of eight identical 28mm metal models found inside FN054 - Light Infantry Chasseurs Advancing, the soldier was undercoated using a mixture of "Vallejo" Surface Primer Black and "Citadel" Abaddon Black, before his uniform/cuffs were given a lick of "Vallejo" Heavy Blue, a fine drowning in "Citadel" Drakenhof Nightshade, and a dry-brush of (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Blue.

The light infantryman's various (and genuinely formidable-looking) were carefully trace out in "Two Thin Coats" White Star and weathered with some watered-down "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade. Whilst his epaulettes and sabre-briquet ribbon were treated to a dollop of "Vallejo" Heavy Grey and "Citadel" Biel-Tan Green. In addition, I managed to carefully manoeuvre a brush-tip of "Vallejo" Gold over parts of the trooper's sword and "Citadel" Abbadon Black to his cartridge pouch.

"...Provided the majority of the fighting force while on campaign."

Next up was the miniature's back-pack and bedroll. Both these pieces of equipment are covered in white leather straps, which to be fair, probably wouldn't be terribly difficult to patiently cover; albeit time-consuming. Resultantly, I always like to 'cheat' on this area by simply giving the areas a coat of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna and Sombre Grey, along with a sploshing in "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade and Nuln Oil as appropriate. Such a move will doubtless have many a dedicated Napoleonic wargamer frothing at the mouth. However, my goal is to get as many Nineteenth-Century colourfully-costumed combatants on the tabletop as I can with my sanity still intact.

Finally, I gave the miniature's shako covering a lick of "Vallejo" Heavy Brown, doused it with "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade, and then plonked plenty of "Two Thin Coats" Skulker Yellow on its pom pom. The military cap was subsequently dry-brushed with (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Brown, and the plume hit with (more) "Two Thin Coats" Skulker Yellow.

Monday 8 April 2024

"The French Imperial Army..."

"...was the land force branch of the French imperial military during the Napoleonic era."

This 28mm scale metal model is produced by “Wargames Foundry", and these days can be purchased as part of the identical eight-figure FN054 - Light Infantry Chasseurs Advancing blister. However, I actually found this miniature last year in a loft-enshrined blister of ten Perry Twin sculpts labelled Chasseurs In Campaign Dress Advancing - a packet which was embarrassingly bought over two decades ago.

The Frenchman was initially primed using a mixture of "Vallejo" Surface Primer Black and "Citadel" Abaddon Black, and then rather roughly had his uniform/cuffs base-layered using a combination of "Vallejo" Heavy Blue and "Citadel" Drakenhof Nightshade. I next tackled the soldier's numerous (and genuinely terrifying) leather straps using a few of layers of  White Star by "Two Thin Coats", before 'muddying' them up a bit with some watered-down "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade.

"Games Workshop" WIPs - This Sons Of Horus space marine is having its details slowly 'picked out'

Having arguably overcome the Chasseur's biggest hurdle, I patiently started applying a little "Vallejo" Heavy Grey and "Citadel" Biel-Tan Green to his epaulettes and sabre-briquet ribbon, "Vallejo" Gold to parts of the trooper's sword and pure "Citadel" Abbadon Black to his cartridge pouch. In addition, I painted the miniature's back-pack and gun-stock with "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna and "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade, and his bedroll in "Vallejo" Sombre Grey and "Citadel" Nuln Oil.

With the official paint scheme from the Newark-based company's website well in mind, I gave model's shako covering a lick of "Vallejo" Heavy Brown and sploshed it with "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade. Before dolloping the figure's plume with "Two Thin Coats" White, Skulker Yellow, "Citadel" Reikland Fleshshade and a second dry-brush/dollop hybrid of (more) "Two Thin Coats" Skulker Yellow. Lastly, I patiently dry-brushed the main uniform with some extra "Vallejo" Heavy Blue to help bring out some of the sculpt's details.

"Papsikels Miniatures" WIPs - Three primed Pap C Guy - A miniatures

Somewhat doggedly returning to last month's main goal, I have managed to work my brush-tip across another 28mm plastic space marine by "Games Workshop". I'm still developing the fastest approach I can to painting my Sons of Horus tactical traitors - as I seem to need so many of them, simply to field a basic 500-point force - so I decided to complete all the "Vallejo" Gold shoulder-pads and kneepads on this particular piece first, before moving on to the "Citadel" Abaddon Black and "Vallejo" Gunmetal stages.

Furthermore, I've finally breathed a little life into my "Elegoo" Mars 3 Pro 3D printer by producing three 28mm Pap C Guy - A multi-piece figures by "Papsikels Miniatures". These guys are clearly inspired by the Gundam MSM-04 Acguy, and have been primed with "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna as a result. Perhaps with hindsight I should have upscaled these models quite significantly - as the mass production amphibious mobile suits are manoeuvred by a human pilot in Anime. However, I think they're rather cute so will probably just add them to my Earth Resistance Force (verses Aliens, Predators & Terminators) as friendly robots.

Saturday 6 April 2024

"Issued Toward The Closing Centuries Of The Great Crusade..."

"...Maximus-pattern armor was still being deployed to Space Marines..."

These three 28mm plastic Space Marines are by "Games Workshop" and come from the now sadly OOP (Out Of Production) Betrayal At Calth boxed game. The multi-piece miniatures have been assembled wearing MK IV armour, and are some of the ten figures I need to field my third Sons of Horus Tactical Squad for "Warhammer: The Horus Heresy."

The trio of figures were initially undercoated with "Citadel" Sons Of Horus Green, before I 'picked out' all the ridges on their shoulder-pads, and any knee-pads which I intended to be gold in "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna. These areas were then (unsurprisingly) given a layer of "Vallejo" Gold and a splash of "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade to darken them down a bit. They were later all highlighted back up with a little dry-brush and some additional smidgeons of "Vallejo" Gold on the sharpest edges and rivets.

"...When Horus led half the Legions into heresy and revolt."

I next applied some "Citadel" Abaddon Black to all the surrounding areas of their shoulder-pads, so as to separate the "Vallejo" Gold from the "Citadel" Sons of Horus Green, and provide some simple (but hopefully effective) shadows around the limbs. This colour was also carefully brushed onto their unarmoured knee and elbow joints, as well parts of their backpacks and Bolters.

All of the models’ power tubes and firearms were subsequently treated to a combination of "Vallejo" Gunmetal and "Citadel" Nuln Oil. Whilst I plonked some "Scalecolor" Speed Metal into each Space Marine's eye slits, and a single layer of the "Citadel" Contrast colour Flesh Tearers Red. Only once all this work was finished did I then heavily wash all of the MK IV armour with "Citadel" Nuln Oil, and dry-brush it with (more) Sons Of Horus Green. Finally I attached some of the many decals found on the "Games Workshop" Sons of Horus Legion transfer sheet onto the odd shoulder-pads and piece of lower-leg armour.

"Wargames Foundry" WIPs - Napoleonic French Light Infantry Chasseurs Advancing 

With approximately a third of my latest Sons of Horus infantry squad now completed, I have spent some time working on a pair of 28mm figures from an old FN054 - Light Infantry Chasseurs Advancing blister by "Wargames Foundry". I actually completed one of these Nineteenth Century Frenchmen as a test piece back in November 2023, so have slowly been plodding through the recipe I created then.

In addition, I've been busy prepping a few more miniatures for this month's push into the Napoleonic era, with an eye on bolstering up my Allies. I've dusted four Russian Infantrymen I want to add to the quarter I pigmented last year - essentially giving me an eight-figure foot unit, and a pair of Prussian soldiers, who frankly look pretty straightforward to complete when compared to the Chasseurs and Russians...

Thursday 4 April 2024

"Oh, Monsters Are Scared."

"That's why they're monsters."

This 90mm tall model is made out of bisqueware and was pre-made by one of the staff at the Ashbury Manor craft shop in Devon. Produced via slip-casting (which uses plaster moulds and a clay/water mixture), the lovable-looking monster is one of over a thousand various sculpts someone visiting the resort can purchase, and was specifically picked so as to let me trying using an assortment of decorative acrylic paints (deco) by "Pebeo" - a range I'd never even heard of before visiting the centre.

The rather rotund figure was initially covered in a couple of coats of Blue Sky, which was described on the label as being an opaque gloss. To be entirely honest I was never seriously considering using these paints for 28mm wargaming figures, as I figured their pigmentation particles would be too big. But I was curious to see whether they could be utilised with large scenic pieces, and having provided a strong coverage with just a couple of coats, I was pretty convinced that certainly this particular colour could be so used.

"Ashbury Manor" WIPs - The bisqueware monster has been base-layered in Blue Sky and Turquoise

Having seen that my nightmarish creature had an unhealthy covering of large, circular spots, I then decided to see how well one of the "Pebeo" metallic colours worked. In keeping with my not-so-friendly faced fiend's cool palette, I opted for Turquoise and was immediately taken with how well it worked. The formula for this 'Pearl' paint was pretty much spot on as far as coverage was concerned, and whilst a tad grainy - as so many metallics arguably seem to be - I felt it had a nice sparkle to its finish.

Indeed, it was at this point that I started to cast my mind back to all the untouched "Games Workshop" plastic scenery I own for "Kill Team", and how this acrylic would probably work well as a basecoat for all the space hulk corridors and metal flooring. Furthermore, where-ever my less than brilliant brush-tip went astray, the aforementioned Blue Sky seemed perfectly capable of covering up my error with a single touch-up. This also proved true for any errant Dark Blue, which I unsuccessfully tried to keep solely upon the bulbous beast's lips.

"Ashbury Manor" WIPs - The ceramic creature slowly has its details 'picked out'

Next up I thought I'd tried one of the lighter colours, so picked up some Light Lilac and gave my monster's bumpy spine and tail a good coat. As expected, the pigment was fine for covering the bare bisqueware, but not so good when it came to any parts previously hit with the Blue Sky. Only after a few more layers did the acrylic finally look reasonable, and even then I feel you can still see some of the Blue Sky leaking through.

Finally, I gave the model's feet a good licking in Violet, and was pleased to see that worked very well with just a single coat - whether it was applied over bisqueware or Blue Sky. With this in mind, I then went on to finish off the somewhat sickeningly cute creature, and considered whether any of the other pottery pieces for sale would be of experimental value for a return trip. A hulking head of Tutankhamen is definitely on the cards, as I rather fancy seeing whether I can turn it into a sandstone centre-piece for an Egyptian tabletop...