Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Silly Season is approaching!

Sorry guys I haven’t posted lately but I have been very busy with work lately with the economic downturn our company has laid off about 100 people Australia wide, I still have a sales position but my area has tripled in the last month and we have closed our Canberra office, so my car is now my office, I have driven almost 12000klms in the last 10 weeks so little time for painting, and with the silly season approaching I won’t improve till I am on holidays in two weeks.

I have been reading a lot (as I have been staying in Hotels a bit) and I have bought a number of great books in the last 10 weeks. Whilst I was competing at the Australian Pipe Band Championships in November, I picked up a few books from one of the highland suppliers, l will give you a short review of these period books I have picked up.

For all of those people who love the Jacobite rebellions of 1715 and 1745 (like myself) you will enjoy “the White Cockade” and other Jacobite tales by Stuart McHardy.

A cracker of a read with lots of short stories and tales of the coming of the Stewart’s and the support and loyalty of the Catholic Scots, McHardy is a great storyteller and has gathered a wide selection of tales which paints a vivid picture and really captures the feeling of frustration among the faithful Jacobites and their doomed cause.

I rate it ten out of ten (as I am one of the faithful!)

The second book is “Culloden Tales” by Hugh G Allison, another book of short stories and tales from the Jacobites perspective.

Unusually past and present tales are told, history of the clans and the Jacobite Regts that fought and died for the cause makes this book a great buy and has really got me fired up about painting up some of the FR Jacobites that I have awaiting some TLC. The Author works as a guide on the battlefield and he relates stories that he has gathered over the years he has worked there. I found it to be a most useful book that filled in a few gaps especially about units and clans that fought on Scotland’s most famous battlefield.

I rate it ten out of ten (see above rating explanation!)

I have been painting a little, some 18th cent supply wagons should be done this weekend, I have also been busy adding to the lead pile, I will get some pictures up later this week.

Cheers
Matt

Friday, October 10, 2008

"Ticonderoga" Moab 2008

Well Guys the event finally happened, Andrew and I arrived a little late on the Saturday morning for set up so I called ahead too Andrew P so he could reserve our table. On the first day we had several "Brother against Brother" skirmish games after socializing and doing some shopping. Then I played about with the terrain for Sunday’s setup, as we ended up on a smaller table than expected, lucky I didn't finish the purpose built terrain for the table and used our clubs very transportable "TTSFN" (Total Terrain System For Now) which consists of styrene hills with removal blankets draped over it and a dyed cotton drop sheet. It worked well with the log emplacements I built, although a little small.

Not all of the French or British Regts I had planned made it to the table and I am ashamed to admit a few actually were based but not totally finished but still fought on the tabletop, however most actually were finished and I was very happy with the result, Scott also finished all of his promised French and British but failed to finish his Provincials.
We played the game twice on the Sunday with the British overwhelming the French both times, the Provincials were as outstanding and the French Dice were abysmal. Three of us actually knew British Grenadier quite well so the game flowed very smoothly, with rare checking of the rule book itself for clarification, we “gouburnised” the rules a little and changed a few things to speed up game play and do away with some book keeping. I had a very rare opportunity to lead my French to Defeat twice, Andrew was rolling like a girl and every time it counted it was a shocker.
Scott, Nathan and Andrew P lead the British to a resounding victory’s twice, with one or the other French flanks folding and then the centre collapsing in both games. Funnily enough the Scots copped terrible casualties in both games and stalled in front the abatis, never really contributing much except to look pretty, the Indians also helping to make that flank look very pretty but not achieving much.

Here are a selection of pic’s from the weekend enjoy!










Wednesday, October 1, 2008

42nd Foot "Black Watch" Lord John Murray



At Ticonderoga the 42nd wore buff facings, the flag is from warflag is for the later uniform change in 1758 after becoming a Royal Regiment and becoming a blue faced regiment.

History
The 42nd arrived in North America in 1756 and was garrisoned in Albany, New York. On July 8, 1758 during the Battle of Ticonderoga, the 42nd participated in the famed charge on the French lines and attempted to storm the breastworks on Ticonderoga Heights, losing over half its number. On July 22, 1758 the 42nd Regiment of Foot was given 'Royal' designation, becoming the 'Royal Highland Regiment'. King George also authorized the raising of an additional battalion. This 'second battalion' was sent to the West Indies, seeing action at Martinique, and the capture of Guadeloupe in 1759. Later that year, the 'second regiment' joined forces with the 'Old 42nd' at Fort Oswego. Albeit speculation, perhaps this 'regiment' was simply reinforcements, clad in the new 'blue-faced' uniform, and carrying the new Colours. In 1759 the 42nd 'Royal Highland Regiment' took part in the siege of Ticonderoga and the capture of Crown Point, and was present for the French surrender of Montreal in 1760.

I am embarrassed to say that due to time constraints, I had to have my Highlanders painted by a good friend (and saviour) the good Cardinal, otherwise they would not of reached the demo table in time for Moab, these are the first figures i have ever commissioned so I am happy to say that I am very happy with the result.

I really hoped to have a crack at these lovely Front rank figures from the Jacobite rebellion range. I have as yet to due a grenadier company perhaps in the future I will do some myself.

Uniform

The 42nd highlanders wore the black watch (government set) full plaid pinned on the left shoulder with a brooch, red short jacket with buff facings and white lace with plain metal buttons, blue bonnets with a white feather, black belts and cartridge pouch a brown leather sporran , a short broadsword hang from a black belted baldric from the left shoulder, the hose were red and white diced (they probably wore Indian cloth leggings at Ticonderoga though)black shoes and brass buckles, metal fittings on the musket with a brass butt plate, buff or plain leather sling. Officers were marked by red sashes and gold Aiguillettes and lace and buttons. The Grenadiers of the Highland Regiment were allowed to wear Bearskin-Fur Caps, with the King's Cypher and Crown over it, on a Red ground in the Turn-up, or Flap The drummers possibly also wore the bearskin too, the drum had a buff body with the royal cypher with red hoops and white cords.

There are a few a arguements that surround a number of issues in FIW for this regiment, the first is that the Pipers wore the Royal Stewart, this is how I had the cardinal paint him, as musicians were paid for by the colonel.

Finally a red vertical pin stripe in the in the original plaid for all ranks not just the Grenadiers.

Cheers
Matt

27th Foot (Lord Blackeney)

27th Foot (Lord Blackeney)



Flag from Warflag

Allowed to wear, in the centre of their colours, a castle with three turrets; St. George's colours flying, in a blue field; and the name Inniskilling over it.

During the French and Indian War, the 27th Foot saw action at Ticonderoga and Crown Point, and were present at the French surrender of Montreal in 1760.

I have painted my 27th regiment as per the 1751 regulations, The Coat, waistcoat and breeches are Brick red, the coat cuffs, lapels, linings, in the 27th buff facing colour. I refrained from painting lace on the hatmen (as the first corps figs have none) but the grenadiers and the drummers were suitably attired in white and yellow lace (as they are Front Rank figs).

I painted a white stock around the neck, white shirt cuffs, brown marching gaiters with black leather garters, black leather shoes, a black cocked hat trimmed with white, a black cartouche pouch with a buff leather should belt and buff waist belt. The long socket bayonet and the brass hilted short hanger sword, both sheathed in black scabbards, with brass tips. A tin water bottle with a plain rope is slung across the shoulder, along with a brown cowhide knapsack with natural leather straps and a natural canvas haversack. The musket has metal barrel and fittings and a brass but plate, with a buff sling.

Officers normally marched with fusils instead of pole arms, the officer lace, buttons and gorget was silver, Officers and NCOs wore a red sash either around the waist or accross the right shoulder, yellow gold aiguillettes and cords.

On the Grenadier Mitre Caps, the Castle was painted on a buff field, as on the Colours; White Horse of hanover and King's Motto on the red Flap, the rear of the cap had a buff band with a red monkey back with white lace, with a white grenade on a blue lace surround.

Drummers mitres as for the grenadiers except kings cypher, the uniform is in reversed colours with white lace, the drum had a buff feild with the three turreted white castle in the centre of a blue oval, red hoops and white cords.

Monday, September 29, 2008

"Under the Pump"

Well with one week to go I am well and truly under the pump for completion, I have't posted for a while as I am busy trying to finnish everything for the Convention for the Labour Day Long weekend, I have also started a new job so I have ben only home on weekends, I have managed to take some French figures with me and I am confident I will finnish the 5 French batns completely. The British only require the drummers and the command stands to be based and standards placed on them.

My Highlanders are being done by the "Cardinal", the first time I have ever had anything painted for me for a very long time, but without his help I would neve of got the scots onto the table at all.

I have completed the log wall and another 140 trees for the table and finally solved the abatis with a seaside brush tree, it looks good.

I hope to take a bunch of pics on friday (as I have a half day then). Here are a few progress shots from the painting table, the finnished btns without basing and flags are on the right hand side.

cheers
matt



Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Provincial New York 3rd battalion

Ok finnished another Provincial Batn, these figs are all early Front Rank Figures which I got off Kendo for my Imagination project, so since I had them laying around I decided that they should become a battalion for our Ticonderoga game, I decided not to put anything on the drummers mitres as this will be redone when I start my 18th century imagination and they will be sticking with the green theme for this project also.

I have decided to add all of the research I have on these guys also, and I will continue with this theme for the remainder of the painted units, so people can benefit from my work.

Col Oliver De Lancey’s New York Regiment (1300 and 1700 all Ranks)
1st Btn Lt Col Bartholomew LeRoux
2nd Btn Lt Col Melancthon Taylor Woolsey
3rd Btn Lt Col Beamsley Glasier

The New York Provincial Troops were wearing 1751 Regimental Uniform Coats that were Blue and had facings of red, with Blue waistcoats and breeches and Black cocked hats. Their firearms and accouterments, for the most part, came from home. By the end of 1757, the New York Provincial uniform was beginning to change, as their Regimental Coats were changed from the Blue Coats faced with red to Green Regimental Coats faced with green, and this would be the uniform that the New York Provincials would wear until the end of the war. (The Green colour was called a "Yellow Drab" and is not unlike the olive drab worn by the Military today.) The Officers in the New York Provincials were not issued their uniforms, and clothing, and therefore had to purchase their own uniforms, and clothing. In the early war years (1756 and early 1757,) the Officers were found in Red Regimental Coats with Blue or Green facings, and their lace was gold. As in the case of the enlisted troops by the end of 1757 the Officers began wearing Green faced green Regimental Coats with silver lace. But the colour of the Green of the Officers coats was a darker forest green. In the year of 1758 there were some other alterations to the Uniform of The New York Provincial Enlisted Troops, such as their hats brims were cut down to 2 1/2 inches and no longer "Cocked", their accruements were the same as was issued to the regular British troops, (but, instead of white leather belts, the New Yorkers wore natural leather or buff coloured belts.)

The drummers I have done are purely made up, the other two batns will be Eureka miniatures.


Monday, August 25, 2008

High, Ho Ranger!





Well my Conquest Rangers are done, and what superb figures they are!

I decided to go for a mixture of clothing but sticking with a limited colour system so they all fit together, these guys are no particular ranger companies and some I have even painted as regulars in true campaign uniform.

They were a absolute pleasure to paint with not much flash and no excessive lines to delete (although a few had annoying ones) all pieces of equipment were well moulded and they figs all seem to have a bit of life about them.

I am so impressed by these guys I think I will sell my Front Rank Coureur de bois and Rodgers Rangers and replace them with conquest ones, some time in the future.

Enjoy the pictures and leave a comment if you have any questions!
Cheers
matt





Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Warpaint







Well here they are, I finally got a good painting run on to finish off my “Conquest Woodland Indian’s”. These figures are just exquisite and I was a little intimidated with them, I hunted around the internet for some inspiration and came across the Robert Griffing artwork and other peoples work, along with the Osprey on woodland Indians.

As with all of my figures I based coated with Matt Black Auto Primer and then decided upon the most difficult decision the skin colour!

I ended up choosing a Games Workshop Colour “Tanned Flesh”, which I think captures the feel for me (some may disagree on the shade). I used GW Fleash wash over the entire figure after the base colours were on, this darkends the recesses nicely so I don't need to black line as much.

The hair and feathers gave me a few challenges, as originally I tried to paint a blend of red, black and white along with porcupine quills in them. I eventually gave up and stuck with bright red for a theme of red decorations and top knots and roaches etc, to tie all the figures together, I then went for neutral breech cloth, leggings, moccasins and leather work. I used brighter contrasting colours to pick out details and add a little colour to equipment and leggings.

I picked out the armbands, jewellery, torques and gorget’s primarily in metals, which looks very effective against the warpaint.

I then moved onto warpaint, the most difficult thing to achieve convincingly on models IMO. For the red warpaint I used GW Red than Magenta ink using several layers to achieve the desired effect. For the black warpaint I used thinned GW Chaos black and armour wash, I am extremely happy with the effect I have achieved with this. I tried a washed out yellow but it didn’t look 100% so I dropped the idea.

The weapons also had a few variations I used Vallejo and GW for the stocks and the bows, I then added some warpaint to a few just to mix it up a little along with brass and metal fittings.

All in all I am very pleased how these guys turned out, I hope they don’t run away when the first sign of trouble comes their way.

Cheers
Matt

Monday, August 11, 2008

More additions to the Colours!

Sorry about not posting as much as I should but we lost our camera charger this month and we only found it on Saturday.

I have finished off a couple of more things, primarily more Provincials another three battalions of 16 figures (I think I will expand them to 24 as it works better and looks better). I also decided after much discussion on TMP, that I would like to give my Provincial units flags, so as the colonel I did!




The Kings colour being on the red field and the colonels on a white, just so I have some more colour on the battlefield and units without flags don’t fight very well!
Along with the Provincials I have finished a number of Conquest Indians, which I will post this weekend when I complete more.

I also started on the log wall which the French will fight behind and some more trees for the tabletop, I now have about 260 trees ready for the game, with another 60 to complete.

The British battalions are all at about 90%, the hatmen company’s are all done, and the commands and mostly done just waiting on drummers and finials from Front Rank also.

Also in the Front Rank order will be Gages light Infantry and Rodgers Rangers, along with the Highlanders and the Grenadiers for the combined Grenadier battalion.
Only 7 weekends to go, until our display game.

Cheers
matt

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Lots of Work In Progress

Well, finally my orders have started to roll in, started on some British Line and more provincials, rangers and more Indians.

My British are first corps figs and they look ideal for the FIW, I have six batns of these guys, not to much detail either lace wise so they will be quick to paint, No drummers though so I needed to order some with my second Front Rank Order, One battalion of 30 has almost been finnished (minus Grenadiers who will also be in the second FR order)I have also started some Conquest Rangers, these guys will be a mixture of uniforms so i can use them for a bit of everything from militia, rangers, farmers etc, the Conquest Indians are almost ready to ink and then complete (after painting tribal tattoos, warpaint and beading), the remaining three battns of Eureka figs also are awaiting a lick of paint along with all of my Front Rank French which have arrived and I cannot wait to get a brush to them.

here are some progress and workbench shots.

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cheers
matt

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Washington

After taking some pics and talking to Kendo, he pointed out the saddle has no stirups! Perhaps thats Washington is standing!

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Movement at the Station

Finally Finished Eureka's Washington and his dogs Vignette, its been 80% done for a couple of months now, still quite happy with the result, I doubt he will get any game time soon though. Still a very nice model to paint, I think I've done the dogs some justice.

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Currently painting some First Corps British but still searching for some suitable drummers to go into the units, possibly I will buy some Front rank Minis (which my British Highlanders and light Infantry will probably be)

The rest of my French Front Rank figures should all arrive this coming week, so they will be sitting patiently to be painted behind the British and American troops.

Last week I started to think about terrain and if I will use a drop sheet or build my tiles (which I have been meaning to do for years), drop sheets are a hell lot easier to carry and more adaptable when you are unsure of the available space for a display/ participation game. Tall trees are also a talking point at the club at the moment, thinking about removable tops so the troops can travel about easier, specifically the tall Canadian types.

Back to the painting table for me, only 14 weekends till the big event.

Cheers
Matt

Monday, April 14, 2008

Carillon (Ticonderoga) 250th Anniversary

Well the anniversary of the battle of Carillon/Ticonderoga is coming up this year and a group of us are conducting a demonstration game on the October long weekend in Sydney at the Mother Of All Battles Convention.

We are currently in the early stages of planning and painting of the troops involved, I have started with my colonial regiments and finished one of the five I intend to have on the table, I also have started my Conquest Indians and colonial rangers, soon my French will hit the table, (along with a few new British and French that have just been ordered). I have started sketches of what the table layout will be, and started thinking about the multi function table layout.

The first day we intend to conduct the landing phase and the early skirmishes before we setup the assault on the heights and trenches of Carillon on the second day. The first day we will use Brother against Brother rules and on the second day British Grenadier rules, hopefully we will get the results we are after.

I hope to post my first unit of Indians this week.

Cheers
matt

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Whew, I'm back

Well finally things are settling back to normal after the New Zealand Piping Championships at Papakura, south of Auckland. Our band had two weeks playing and holidaying before we returned home to Australia , 6th was our best place for the event.

We returned to Australia for one weeks rest before attending a highland gathering at Bathurst and then Brigadoon at Bundanoon today, then a fortnights rest before Anzac day in Goulburn.

On the painting table this week doing some Conquest colonials and started the Indians after settling on a paint scheme, hopefully some eye candy out in the next week or so, also thinking about building a few blockhouses and frontier cabins, before moving onto the purpose built terrain for the MOAB convention.

Cheers
matt

Monday, February 18, 2008

Woodlands

Well this past week I have been working on some very fine Woodland Indians from the Conquest 500 Nations Range. These are some of the best Indians I have ever set eyes upon, and frankly I am a little intimidated by them, as I want to achieve a beautiful paint job to do justice to the figures. I have about sixty figures to paint in total and I will be attacking them in batches of ten, so I will stay fresh, I will paint some Conquest Colonials to get a change of pace. I hope to have a unit out before March.

Further news, on our planned Demonstration game front, Scott Robinson and myself will be conducting a FIW demonstration Game at MOAB (Mother Of All Battles) convention here in OZ in October, Scott will be supplying most of the line troops, (French and British) I will supply a number of Indians and colonial troops, we will be using the British Grenadier rules with 1 figure representing twenty men, as no one has volunteered to do the Scottish Regiments, perhaps I may have to have a crack myself!

I will be starting the terrain after I return from New Zealand Pipe Band Championships and a family holiday in March , so stay tuned for a few tutorials, then.

cheers
Matt

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Massachussetts Provincial Regiment

The First of My French Indian War Provincial Regiments, Massachussetts provided six Regiments for the Ticonderoga campaign. They predominatly wore blue jackets with red facings, my reference for painting them was from the Knotel plates, I guessed that the officer lace would be white (silver) as the buttons were, but I could be wrong!

I am seeking a standard for these guys as I have no references as to what they carried, maybe someting similar to the British line "battalion" flag is my best guess, If anybody knows please answer my querry on the 18th cent message board on TMP (total Miniatures page).

The Eureka figures were a pleasure to paint, and I am very happy with the finnish I achieved with this unit. The Eureka figure I believe will also suit the British 60th Foot Regt (Royal American) uniform, as the cuff flaps and cuffs are as not pronounced as British uniforms.


This unit will hopefully take to the table with a few other Provincial regts and British and Indian allies for a demo game in October. I did think about giving the officer a musket or fusil, but I decided to use the spontoon.

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Cheers
Matt

Monday, January 28, 2008

Eureka 28mm American Provincials

I was excited to hear from Nic at Eureka that the FIW figures were available for me to pick up at CanCon, after a hiccup late last year with the greens.


Eureka are forging ahead with some new releases for the French Indian War range through the 100 club system, the latest hot of the press for those members who subscribed to the 100 club are the American FIW Provincials, those who ordered large numbers of figures receive theirs first, and the remainder of you will need to wait till later in 2008, so to wet your appetites, I thought I would do a short review on these figures.


These figures will be suitable for the Provincial regiments that fought in the war in Canada. The privates all have tomahawks and either turn backed jackets or plain jackets and all muskets have bayonets. The officers and Nco’s have sashes and swords, and have the option of halberd or musket, there is no standard pole included. The faces are well sculpted with great expressions (not that I am any good at getting expression with my painting of them). A great number of the figures will also double for AWI, and perhaps some of the fictional 18th century armies could be influenced to pick up some also.

First I will look at Washington and his dogs.
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100AOR56 George Washington with horse and dogs – 4 piece

A lovely mini diorama, was produced by Alan, a dismounted Washington with two dogs and a horse, the sculpt is excellent with minimal flash, the horse looks small thats because I mounted the other figs on two cent coins and he was placed at the rear. Washington looks fine and dandy!


My favourite figures are the firing line, especially the ready posed figures.

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Ready

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100AOR50 F&I Wars Provincial Regular Infantry firing (4 )

The classic straight legged marching pose has been captured well with these figures.

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100AOR51 F&I Wars Provincial Regular Infantry, advancing (4)

I like these figures, however I personally would of liked an officer with a drawn sword pose also, I may convert one or two with some spare swords that I have, laying around. I will probably add them to my AWI Regts for variation

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100AOR52 F&I Wars Provincial Regular Infantry Officer (2)


The drummers are excellent, and I will probably add them to my AWI Regts for variation, especially the advancing figure.
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100AOR53 F&I Wars Provincial Regular Infantry Drummer (2)

The ensigns have nice poses especially the standing figure.

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A nice Nco figure, that will tell the privates to remain in the ranks!
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100AOR55 F&I Wars Provincial Regular NCO (1)

Overall I am very impressed with these figures, I am thinking of buying some extra commands and mucking around looking for similar uniformed AWi regts to the FIW regts I paint so I can just change the command stands and viola more AWi troops.

I hope to get the first battalion done by this weekend.

Cheers
matt