Finally, as I fooled around the other day with the first 15 completed Croats (in red and green at right in the photograph above), to find a configuration that looked about right before gluing them down, it struck me that I might further split each 60mmx40mm base of five figures into smaller vignettes of two and three miniatures respectively. Such an arrangement makes it easy to move the various bases apart to represent a widely dispersed screen of skirmishers on a flank or the edge of a wood. It's just as easy to line up the six bases end-to-end to represent a loose order firing line, or place them one behind the other to represent a unit at the march along a road or somewhere else. Problem solved.
I'll eventually post some better photos here, which will make all of this clearer, once everything is done for the 33-figure battalion. In the meantime, you can get some idea of what I'm talking about by clicking on the photo above and examining my work so far with the red and green half-battalion on the far right of the picture. These have been affixed to their bases along with some terrain features -- tiny rocks to represent stones and boulders plus a few twigs to represent tree trunks and fallen logs. As soon as I visit the local arts and crafts store, I'll pick up a small bottle of artist's matte medium and use it to affix two or three different sizes of Woodland Scenics scatter material to the bases, which will represent tall grass, weeds, privet shrubs, and briar bushes or something similar.
A word on brushes. I finally broke down earlier this afternoon, and unearthed my carefully hoarded stock of new Winsor-Newton Cottman synthetic rounds -- a #1, #2, and a #4 -- purchased in January 2012. Their sharp points have made painting a dream today, speeding things up considerably. It's amazing how brushes in good condition enable you to put even runny washes and glazes exactly where you want them, and there they stay (happy, contented sigh).
The various Minden and RSM95 miniatures shown and discussed above were also purchased in January with a very generous Christmas gift card that came from my in-laws, who, now that I think about it, have subsidized quite a bit of the the Grand Duchy of Stollen collection during the last few years. Thanks Nan and Dave! I actually had adequate funds left over to purchase in addition the Austrian and Prussian staff sets from Minden Miniatures along with Continental and British mounted generals/ADCs from Fife & Drum Miniatures. I hope to tackle two or three command vignettes after the current crop of Croats are done.
Speaking of which, the uniforms I am painting are based on a Knoetel illustration of the Hungarian Kokenyesdi Regiment (1742) in the case of the blue half-battalion in-progress above, and what I think is a Bryan Fosten illustration of von Trenk's Freikorps (1740s) for my red and green half-battalion. The mounted Minden Austrian hussar officer's uniform is a more fanciful combination of the two, and I'll paint the marching Austrian grenadier officer and NCO as, well, Austrians in grayish white with red facings.
That's the plan at any rate, and now I'll end this post because it has grown much longer than I initially intended, and it's time to fix another iced-tea sized glass of iced black coffee. Nattering on and on incessantly about one's hobby is hard work, you know.