This past week I painted the “Courtesan” figure from the Bones 4 Townsfolk II set. This completes this set for me and completes all the Townsfolk from the Bones 4 Core Set. I prepped the figure in the usual way, soaking it in a dish of water with a couple drops of dish-soap added, then giving it a light scrub with a soft toothbrush, and then rinsing and drying it. I then glued the figure to a brown-primed 1" fender washer with Aleene’s Tacky glue, and then placed the figure in my painting grip.
I decided since it was such a plain figure, I would attempt to do some fancy pattern on the dress. The figure appeared to look like it was meant to resemble a Japanese Geisha to some extent, which inspired me to want to to try to do a cherry blossom print on it. So to begin, I Googled “cherry blossom kimono” to get some ideas on patterns. Also, since I had just done a lot of white fabric on last week’s figure, I knew wanted to do something colored on this one, and I picked yellow.
I began by painting the skin with Reaper MSP “Bronze Skin”. I then painted the dress with Americana “Primary Yellow”, and her hair with Ceramcoat “Black”
Next, I worked up mid-tones and highlights on the dress using first, Crafter’s Acrylic “Bright Yellow”, then Crafter’s Acrylic “Daffodil Yellow”, Apple Barrel “Lemon Chiffon”, and finally a little of the “Lemon Chiffon” mixed with Americana “Snow White”. After that, I gave her skin a coat of Citadel “Reikland Fleshshade” wash.
Then, while the wash was drying, I painted the tree branches on her dress using Americana “Charcoal Grey”, and did highlights on them with Americana “Mississippi Mud”. Next, I painted her eyes, and then highlighted her skin with the base “Bronze Skin”, and some Reaper MSP “Bronze Skin Highlight”.
I decided at that point that the highlights on the branches weren’t light enough, so I added some more highlights with Americana “Fawn”. I then painted the flowers; first doing blossoms with Crafter’s Acrylic “Christmas Red”, and then giving them centers of Pathfinder MSP “Urgathea Red”, then I did more flowers with the “Snow White”, and then gave those blossoms centers with Crafter’s Acrylic “Tutti Frutti”. Next, I did highlights on her hair, first with Folk Art “Cloudy Day”, and then mixing in a little Crafter’s Acrylic “Cool Blue”, and finally adding in some spots of the “Snow White”. After that I painted the pendant on her necklace with Ceramcoat “Wedding Gold”, and then did the pearls on the necklace, and in the center of the pendant, with the “Snow White”. Lastly, I painted her base and the washer with the “Mississippi Mud”. I let the figure dry overnight and the next day I gave it a coat of Americana “DuraClear Matte” varnish. Another overnight dry, and I sprayed the figure with Testor’s Dullcote".
I’m really happy with this one. I wanted to experiment with doing the the shadows, mid-tones and highlights on the fabric simply with paint, instead of my usual use of a wash; and I think it turned out pretty good. I am especially pleased with how the cherry blossoms came out, although I’m slightly disappointed in the face.
Several years ago I picked up a wooden display case at a craft fair (Bieglerville, PA). I made some backgrounds and placed some of my figures into the case.
You can see that the backgrounds stretched all the way across the shelves. You can see that some of the backgrounds didn’t make sense any more as the figure on display changed but the backgrounds did not. The second shelf from the top originally held some undersea figures, but those were consigned to a storage box, and the background no longer aligned with the figures on display. Also, since fanfold paper is no longer common and can’t be used in normal ink jet or laser printers, if you look closely you’ll see annoying, abrupt breaks in the backgrounds, which I tried to cover with trees and bits of foam. I decided it was time to revamp this display case.
I decided to print backgrounds and glue them to sheets of balsa wood in approximately 10-inch and 6.5-inch sections. The thought was that as I changed out which figures I wanted to display, I could just print a background and replace a single panel. When I painted some new figures I wanted to display, I could create a custom background for them.
I am pretty happy with the end result.
As you can see, many of these figures are ones figures that are unlikely to find their way onto the tabletop for a game but were fun to paint and make a good display for guests are not “into” wargaming. It was a fun, one-day project that I think turned out nicely. Now hopefully life will return to normal soon, and people can come over to game and see this in person.
In building a set of troops for the Spanish Conquest, I came across a couple of blisters of 25mm Ral Partha figures called “Aztec Arrow Knights”. These were in my lot of unpainted lead for the period, sculpted by R. Kerr, and dated from 1988. The blisters held 6 figures armed with huge feathered arrows – think javelins with fletching. As I thought that they were interesting potential elite troops with unique weapons, I decided to add one of the two blisters to my Aztec forces, keeping the other in reserve for future painting.
As I discussed previously, I had been doing research on the Aztecs. I looked for suitable color plates or guides to paint up this unit. To my surprise, there is a bit of mystery and possibly even controversy about Arrow Knights. History provides little evidence in the codices as to their existence – though there are clues here and there.
I suppose it’s not out of the question that an elite unit of Aztec warriors specializing in launching massively huge javelin-like arrows could have existed. Perhaps there was some confusion with the atlatl (ot-la-t) a spear-throwing device? Just because old Ral Partha made these does not mean that they did exist – but for the purposes of my games and my Aztec Army – they do now.
Of course, painting them would be up to me for choosing the colors. The only picture that I found was from a computer gaming site – and it did not match any of the plates. I did like the markings known as “hawk scratches”. I decided that I would give the unit a coloration similar to the cuahchic elites – that being a yellowish suit of tanned hide that would have been worn over their quilted-cotton armor ichcahuipilli (each-ca-we-pee-lee).
It was fun to break into this old blister from Ral Partha’s “1200 A.D.” line. The figures were all in the same pose, but I figured that I could orient their arrows in slightly different positions, use slightly different colors on each , and give different shields to each for aesthetics and ease of tabletop identification and playability. A familiar challenge was that the arrows were all lead – and vulnerable to bending and breaking. I also wanted them to have two big arrows – one to throw and one to use in melee.
The problem with doing this were twofold. First, I did not want to sculpt 6 little extra arrows – and second the little 25mm hands were too small to accommodate even the arrows provided. My solution was to use some steel wire pikes I had gotten from Iron Winds Metals during my Rooman War Party project. I cut the pikes to size and used super glue to affix them to the arrows. They would be the “second” arrow, albeit without fletching or another obsidian head. I think it worked – and you can be the judge.
Next, I’ll share some close up eye candy shots of each, a scale comparison, and some group shots.
Arrow Knight #1
Arrow Knight #2
Arrow Knight #3
Arrow Knight #4
Arrow Knight #5
Arrow Knight #6
I am also adding a new feature here. I want to be able to share related posts on the larger Aztec project with folks who have not seen all of the previous posts. Additionally, I need a way to help me keep track of my progress! Therefore, the list of links below will accomplish both for me.
Posts on Units for my 16th Century Spanish Conquest Supplement for Feudal Patrol – “Civilizations Collide”
I am actually enjoying being self quarantined on the weekends. It minimizes the honey-do list. As someone who pegs out the “I” meter on Myers-Briggs, I have been practicing for self quarantine my whole life. I was able to complete quite a few figures this weekend.
The first thing I did was open a box and find four of these Eureka Miniatures Hawaiian war canoes. I bought them months ago when Eureka first released their new Hawaiians. I didn’t want to assemble them before the move. There is not much to them. Picture I found on line show these canoes and un-ornamented, so there wasn’t a lot of detail to paint. I had to reach out to Nic Robson in Australia to figure out how to mount the sails on the masts. I hope to complete that this evening.
The second thing I knocked out was two packs of Pulp Figures I purchased months ago. They are redesigns and re-issues of figure sets I already had. They may have been the free packs I got when ordering enough figures online.
Three conventions ago Chris and I split a box of Oathmark dwarves. My intent was to build them without heads. In the most recent duck Kickstarter from Star Hat miniatures, I convinced Darcy Perry to offer sprues of duck heads. As part of my Kickstarter I ordered several sprues. I finished the figures while painting some other Viking figures. The delivery of the heads is delayed based due to COVID-19.
Greg 3D printed three Saxon huts for me before I moved from Maryland, but I just got around to painting them this weekend. I think they turned out pretty nicely. This picture shows some Vikings that some of the HAWKs painted for me before I moved in front of one of the three buildings.
Before Cold Wars, I was painting Ozz figures like crazy, but I didn’t have time to paint these three personality figures. These are named brigade commanders for the Wars of Ozz rules.
As a club, the HAWKs is looking at running a large, spectacular What a Tanker game using Leonardo DaVinci tanks. Duncan has made some skeletons of trapezoidal tanks for us to complete, but I also ordered three 3D printed ones online in 1:48 scale. I assembled and painted them this weekend. The printing was somewhat crude, so they look good at “gaming distance” but don’t stand up well to close inspection.
I’d say that is was a pretty productive weekend, and I even knocked out a couple of honey-dos.
No, I’m not talking about members of Congress! I am talking about figures I purchased from Outpost Wargaming Service from Badger Games. These really appealed to me a year or so ago. I bought a bunch — a few were out of stock. During the plague lock-in, a lot of stuff in my painting queue is moving to the painting table at a faster-than-normal rate.
These were a nice break after painting the Ozz figures with a lot of figures in Napoleonic style uniforms. With these, I could paint them in whatever colors I wanted. Of course many were in dark cloaks, the better to conduct nefarious enterprises in the dead of night.
Many of the WSD smugglers and highwaymen have mounted and dismounted versions of the same figure. I actually didn’t realize this at first. I was going to paint all the dismounted figures first and then the mounted figures. Then I realized there were many matched pairs and I started painting them at the same time.
I really like the dragoon figures. There were mounted and dismounted versions of them as well; although, there were limited poses.
I see a scenario in which two rival bands of brigades want to loot from the coach. One of the people in the coach is secretly a hero type. Dragoons rush onto the table to the rescue. There will be at least four distinct factions.
I didn’t take pictures of every figure in the line. There were a lot of them as you can see from the work in progress photos.
I mixed into this batch of figures a few others from the project box as well.
I began this batch of figures last Saturday, so they took me a full week to complete. I will combine these with the Old Glory duelist figures to make some fun scenarios, but I don’t know when I’ll get them on the table with all the “social distancing.”
At Historicon 2020, the HAWKs are planning to run a large What A Tanker! game, but we plan to use 1:48 scale tanks inspired by Leonardo DaVinci. Most people are familiar with the round tanks from DaVinci’s mechanical drawings. Twenty something years ago, there was a published set of rules, called Leonardo Plus that also featured trapezoidal (and much more practical) tank designs. I had planned to complete all six tanks I signed up to contribute in time to deliver them to Don at Cold Wars, but the push to get all the Ozz figures painted delayed that plan. Since being locked into my house for almost a month, I have been knocking a lot of projects off my to-do list.
Below are some work in progress shots of the round DaVinci tanks.
I mailed these three off to Don last week so that they can start to play test the game and get the HAWKs comfortable with the rules.
For the trapezoidal tanks, Duncan got us all started by building skeletons or frames for them. Then a few hours with an Xacto and some super glue were easy work building over these skeletons.
Then came the fun part of painting the tanks. In this case, I didn’t spray prime them; I just brush painted them.
These have been packed in a box and are on their way to Don. I can’t wait to see them and the tanks built by the other HAWKs on the table at Historicon 2020 — or whenever the next HMGS East convention is.
I had ten Oathmark Viking figures partially completed since before my household move and purchase a handful of Bad Squiddo shield maidens at Cold Wars. This weekend, I had a chance to get them painted.
As with most Bad Squiddo figures the sculpting and the casting of the shield maidens is excellent.
I can’t wait to get these on the table with Feudal Patrol.
I ran into Joe Corsaro at Cold Wars. He told me about these cool Russian mechanical grenadier figures for his Venus 1888 line of figures. I have most of his females on mechanical horses, but I hadn’t seen these. So I bought five and painted them up. The assembly was really easy, all the parts fitting nicely. He says he has some really cool VSF coaches coming soon, and I can’t wait to get my hands on them.
I saw this set of McGuffins at the Crooked Dice booth, but I originally passed on them until Greg convinced me that cats and dogs would live together if I didn’t buy them. I painted these up this weekend. I like the Holy Grail and the Maltese Falcon.
Next up is the assembly and painting of Leonardo DaVinci tanks and Saxon buildings.