Sunday, October 28, 2007

Painted Figures for October

Early Saxons: 11 this month

A much better month despite a week in the US and a couple of days in Prague.

The score was 43 this month which is my second best of the year. The yearly total is 254 in 43 weeks or 5.90 figures per week. So I am now only four figures behind schedule! November will be a five week month as I only count whole weeks but I have to go to Ankara for five days so that will slow things down. So I need to paint 34 figures to get back on par. Difficult but not impossible.

Musketeer Miniatures Early Saxons: 11
Musketeer Miniatures Great North Wars Russian: 1
Games Workshop Lord of the Rings Rohan Captain: 1
A&A Miniatures Middle Imperial Roman ARchers: 15
Crusader Miniatures Dark Ages irish: 1
Foundry Darkest Africa character: 1
Perry Miniatures Sudan KRRC: 12
Foundry Spartan General: 1

It's an all Perry week: Sudan British and Beja, Dutch Jaegers and a cuirassier!

Next up are a few more Beja, the final batch of the King's Royal Rifle Corps and a few Perry Napolenics which are well on their way. It may be pushing it a bit as I am out quite a lot this week.

Friday, October 26, 2007

3rd century Romans: Another Blog!

It's my TMP icon!

I have had a couple of days off sick with a nasty bug and while I haven't been well enough to paint much (that's how my wife knew I was really ill) I have had time to set up another blog. Having enjoyed painting my 3rd Century Archers I have decided to get back to work on my 3rd Century Roman Army and also start collecting some Palmyran troops as opposition.

It will all unfold, very slowly, here:

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Middle Imperial Roman Archers

I finished seven A&A MIR archers today, so with the one I have already painted I have almost a viable unit. These figures represent the troops in the mid third century who fought against the Persians and Palmyrans. A&A already make Palymyran cataphracts and are promising more troops so I will continue to build this Eastern Roman force. Hopefully, I can get another eight done this week.

Friday, October 19, 2007

World War 1 British infantry

Renegade on the left. Great War Miniatures on the right.

I have just had my first delivery from Great War Miniatures.
A couple of years ago, when they first came out, I ordered quite a lot of the Renegade Miniatures World War 1 figures. I wasn't very interested in the late war, with all that tedious trench warfare, but the early period with rapid manoeuvre and fighting retreats apppealed to me, especially as my Grandfather was in the KRRC in the BEF.

So I was very attracted to the new Great War Miniatures early war figures, even though I had been warned that they were not compatible with the Renegade figures.

Not so! I am very fussy about different scales but these seem fine to me! I am now hoping that they will produce all the figures I want from an early WW1 range, such as French Cuirassiers and German Uhlans.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Workbench Plan

Well, I have no chance of being disciplined about concentrating on a particular army but I have come to a sort of rationalisation. I will only have figures on the workbench from a limited selection of periods where I am building units, but I can't have two armies from the same period on the go at the same time.

So, there will be some Ancients figures, some Dark Ages, some Renaissance/pike and shot, some Nineteenth Century and some fantasy. So that's five periods. If I want to add another then one of the other periods has to go away. At the moment I have Musketeer GNW Swedes (another lot arrived today), Perry Sudan, Musketeer Early Saxons and Artizan Pulp. I have a couple of odd darkest Africa and a Perry French Cuirassier as well but they don't count as I have already started them.

So now I realise that I need to get some Ancients on the go! I have done a few Spartans lately and could do with a change. I fancy doing some more Romans so the choice is between some Italian allies for my Punic Army, some more EIR, some 3rd Century Romans or some Caesarean. I've actually started some Italian allies, Caesarean and some 3rd century ones so they wouldn't take so long to finish as starting another unit of EIR.

I just looked in the Roman box and found 15 A&A Middle Imperial Roman armoured archers. These have several advantages as a project: they have no shields or spears and I have got the base colours down on most of them already. I finished one last year and it was pretty straightforward so I reckon I could turn out quite a few in a reasonably short space of time and try to get my average back up again.
Let's see if that works!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Archduke match Crisis!

The Archduke is the winebar I have been occasionally known to retire to after work before catching the train home from Waterloo station. Well when I say "occasionally" I mean at least once a week. And I have been going there for some time. In fact, next May I will have been going there for twenty-five years, mainly with my long suffering friend Bill, my equally long suffering sister (who also both go home from Waterloo) and an even longer list of former girlfriends (and some ex-girlfriends -including the ones my wife doesn't like me to still see!). In fact I go so often I have been offered a discount and nowdays the cute barmaid from Shanghai gets anxious if I haven't been in for a week or so.

So what has all this got to do with painting soldiers?

Archduke matches! They are the perfect length for stirring pots of Humbrol paint; just slightly longer than standard matches. But now with no smoking in winebars (hooray!) there are also no matches and the last time I went (last week) the basket of matches had GONE! What shall I do? I only have about twenty boxes left. I may have to find out who made them and actually buy some! Match makers must be having a thin time of it so they might be grateful for an order!

Did a little bit of painting tonight but even with a daylight bulb it's quite hard on the eyes so I have decided to get base colours down during the week and do shading at the weekends.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

A better week..

Well, I finished eight figures this week, which is the same as my entire total for September. I have four more almost done and they should be finished tomorrow.

The Rohan captain is for my Lord of the Rings Battle Companies unit; a game I play with my little boy quite often. As you win (or lose, in my case) games you can win or buy extra troops, so you often need to paint one or two for the next game. I also have a mounted version which I may do now as well.
Coming up for the next two weeks are, therefore, Sudan British Riflemen, a few more Spartans, some more Early Saxons and some more GNW Swedish.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Painted Figures for September

It's late coming as I have been out of the country most of the month so far.

Well, it was eight, easily my worst month so far. The yearly total is 211 in 39 weeks or 5.41 figures per week. I am now 23 figures behind schedule. That is going to be difficult to make up unless..I paint more Beja!

Musketeer Miniatures Early Saxons 5
Musketeer Miniatures Great North War Swede 1
Artizan Spartan 1
Artizan Sky Pirate 1

Never mind October is looking better and I have just finished my first two figures for two weeks. One is another Spartan General, you can see him on my Spartan WAB blog.
The other is the first of my Musketeer Miniatures Russians from the Great North War.

Talking of Great Wars I ordered some of Great War Miniatures new early WW1 British today as they look very nice. This is pretty silly as I actually have quite a few of Renegade's WW1 figures painted and they are not compatible but they never finished the range with the figures I wanted and I am really interested in BEF period WW1 so might be willing to start again.
The other good news is that I had a good go at the first six Sudan KRRC and not only repainted the base shade rifle green but did the shading on the coats and trousers, repainted the helmets and got the base coat of the leatherwork done. Should finish them next weekend. I think its just these grey uniforms I don't like!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Blog List: Hit Parade Top Ten

I now have 10 wargaming blogs on the go and set them up mainly so I had a way of posting pictures to answer queries on TMP along the lines of "how do Gripping Beast Vikings look next to Artizan" and also to get me to focus on my armies (you can see how well that has worked). I saw a free counter on someone else's site and put them on mine at the end of August. Much to my amazement other people out their have actually been looking at them, and this is without me putting "I have a new blog" postings on TMP (which I consider rather infra dignitatem). So, after six weeks of counting I thought I would assemble the 10 in order of views so far.

19th Century Sudan Armies has had an amazing 1132 views
Legatus Wargames Armies (this one) has had 534 views
Spartan WAB has had 387 views
Byzantine WAB has had 282 views
Cavegirls in Fur Bikinis has had 258 views (no doubt due to the pictures of Raquel Welch)
Punic War WAB has had 160 views
Dark Ages WAB has had 101 views
Return to Darkest Africa has had 81 views
Pulp Warriors has had 38 views
Swashbucklers has had 10 views (basically just me)
I will review this once in a while to see how things develop.
I took yesterday off, having just come back from Prague, as I had basically had enough after eight flights in ten days. As a result I got on very well with the next batches of Spartans, Early Saxons and a couple of others. I seem to have recovered my enthusiasm for painting (except for the Sudan, sadly) and hope to finish these figures at the weekend.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Ancient Germans

Someone on The Miniatures Page was asking to see pictures of Foundry Ancient Germans so I dug some of mine out. Oh dear, I wish I hadn't. I painted these years ago and they look very ropey now. Most still haven't got my proper static grass bases yet and the cavalry ones are too small so will have to be redone.

I will have to tidy them up before putting them into my new army boxes.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Arizona in Arizona

I've spent the last ten days in the Western US visiting Los Angeles, Orange County, Phoenix, Las Vegas and Sacramento. Not much military stuff to be seen (although there is quite a good little California Military museum in Old Sacramento which I went to last year) but I did enjoy the new expanded USS Arizona museum in the State Capitol building in Phoenix.

They have a splendid model of the Arizona and a small part of the ship itself in a room with information on the ship and it's history.

They also have another room containing the silverware of the ship, which is certainly impressive.

I stayed in a lot of hotels during the week but my favourites were the Beverly Hilton, venue of the Golden Globes every year and the Bellagio in Las Vegas of Oceans 11 fame.

Another fleapit hotel.

The most exciting part of the trip was not seeing David Beckam in his SUV in Beverly Hills, nor sitting next to Kenneth Branagh at lunch or indeed the fifty or so starlets queuing up for an audition in Hollywood but a sighting of a Bugatti Veyron outside the Beverly Hilton. Never seen one before! Stunning!


Monday, October 01, 2007

David Gemmel Trojan trilogy

I'm in sunny Beverly Hills and have just been sitting by the pool finishing Shield of Thunder by David Gemmell which I started on the flight over. I read Lord of the Silver Bow when it first came out but didn't buy the second book when I had heard Gemmel had died as I didn't want to invest a lot of emotional capital into a book where there was no resolution to the story. However, his wife finished the book and it was published recently so I picked it up as an airport only trade edition on the way out.

I remember enjoying the first book without being able to remember anything about it! I think part of my confusion was because I read the Lindsay Clarke War at Troy shortly before. The Clarke books are more to do with Gods and the principals. The Gemmel books eschew supernaturals and look at some of the supporting cast more.

From a wargaming point of view the second book is very good, particularly towards the end where Hektor's Trojan forces are fighting Thrakians in Thraki (naturally). There are a couple of set piece battles: holding the pass and the Battle of Carpea which would make a change from all that sitting outside Troy. They also suggest other battles as part of this campaign. Better still I think I now have a use for all those Foundry Northern European Bronze Age figures who are now going to be cast as Thrakians.

Maybe another blog calls!