21 October 2006

A Halting Charge to the Front. . .

October has not been a kind month so far. First, I contracted another nasty head cold that kept me in bed for most of last weekend with a slight fever. For the second time in five weeks! That cleared up by the beginning of last week, but then I woke up on Thursday morning with a case of Conjunctivitis (or Pink Eye in everyday language), which required another visit to the doctor, time spent waiting around filling prescriptions, and a day of cancelled classes. Seems that the college where I teach is a veritable playground for germs and viruses.

One would think I was teaching drippy-nosed preschoolers. And from what I have observed of the young “adults” to whom I teach writing and composition, few parents seem to have instilled habits like covering one’s mouth when one sneezes, yawns, or coughs. Is it just me? Or do many people below a certain age seem to lack even the most basic manners?

Anyway, this means that I am somewhat behind schedule with my Jaegers zu Fuss because I have been dealing with one sort of affliction or another. Hell and damnation, as my grandmother used to say.

But, I was able to get in a few hours of painting last night, since my wife is away at the second of two conferences this month. Only a few small details and some touching up to complete now before the coat of Future floor wax. If all goes well, and these days who knows, I might me able to wrap up work on Stollen’s Jaegers zu Fuss before the end of this weekend. Then I can move on to the next part of the project.

For November, I’d like an easy painting month. So, I’ll restrict my activities to just two small things. To begin with, I’ll paint the first battery of artillery for my continuing “Charge Project” – A two-gun battery with a mounted colonel -- The Grand Duchess' (Waltraud's Own) Regiment of Artillery. Plus I’ll be using 25mm MiniFigs SYW field pieces instead of the tiny plastic guns that came with the two sets of Revell SYW Austrian Horse Artillery I tracked down and purchased from shops in Denmark and Russia last spring.

I’m excited to begin this next unit. The guns and figures work really well together because MiniFigs are on the small side of 25mm these days and the Revell SYW figures are on the large side of 1/72. For this reason, I’ll plug any holes in the Revell SYW range with 25mm MiniFigs. Did you know that this particular Revell line measures almost 30mm from base to the top of foot figures’ heads? I’ve wondered lately how they might look next to some “old school” figures like Spencer Smiths.

Parenthetically, I’ve decided to replace my Revell standard bearers with ones from MiniFigs. I’m a pretty good painter and maker of model buildings, but I’m not much good at figure conversions, so things like replacing molded plastic flags and flagpoles are a bit beyond my expertise. Metal figures would be a bit more stable too with the over-sized, print-out standards I plan to use from WarFlag et al.

But back to the artillery -- Right now, I’m torn between painting my artillery figures in fairly historical blue coats with red facings, or, perhaps, a light grey coat with light green facings, turnbacks, and small clothes. I’m partial to the latter, so, we’ll see what actually transpires when I sit down to next month and begin painting these figures.

Also on the table for November -- I’m planning to paint up two mounted generals and an ADC to command the army fighting for The Grand Duchy of Stollen. Again, these will 25mm MiniFigs from the SYW Prussian range, but I’ll be taking a fair amount of artistic license with the uniforms and color schemes. The head honcho will be painted more or less like Frederick the Great. The second general is, I believe, a cuirassier figure and will wear a white coat while the ADC will wear a red coat. I have yet to decide on their respective facing colors and turnbacks though. By the way, the horses will be a grey, a light bay, and a chestnut.

Hopefully, I’ll be able to work my way through these two “sub-projects” fairly rapidly, since they number only 16 plus four horses and two cannon. My college is closed for Veterans’ Day (Armistice Day) on November 11, and we also have a nice four-day weekend for the Thanksgiving holiday here in the USA at the end of the month. So, I’m hoping for several nice days of relatively uninterrupted painting during the next five-week period.

Oh, and before any of you ask, I tried to snap several photos of the Jaegers zu Fuss at their current stage of completion late last night, but, as luck would have it, my camera indicated that it requires a new battery! I’m not sure whether to laugh or swear like a sailor at this point! Some weeks it just doesn’t seem like anything goes right. Sniffle--sniffle!


Bluebear Jeff said...

Paint your artillerymen whatever color you want . . . after all, as Grand Duke you can decide for yourself what uniforms they will wear.

-- Jeff

Grand Duchy of Stollen 1768 said...

Hi Jeff,

Then it's settled -- Light grey with light green facings, turnbacks, and smallclothes it is! And I have just the color -- GW's Scorpion Green should look very nice against coats painted with Armory Confederate Grey. Thanks for the input and helping to sway my millinary mind.


Bluebear Jeff said...


I recall that in the Great Northern War (1700-1721) there were some artillery units in violet uniforms with green trim (I remember painting them up). I think that they were in the Danish forces -- but my memory might be wrong as to that.

In the WSS there were many grey uniforms with all different sorts of greens (light green, dark green, apple green, sea green, green -- to name a few that I recall off the top of my head).

-- Jeff

Anonymous said...

Regarding the manners of the young - my daughter had a friend for a sleepover on Friday. We fed her, looked after her and made sure she was comfortable. Put ourselves out for her on the Friday night (took her and my daughter to the cinema and picked them up and gave them money for food etc.). when we dropped her off back at her parents house what did we get? Not even a "bye". Out of the car and gone. Manners are not what they used to be.

Anonymous said...

I can't beleive people still use oils. I thought everyone was into acrylics nowadays. I don't have the patience for oils - 48hours drying time?

But then oils do gie you that beautiful look that you've mastered Stokes.


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