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Showing posts from February, 2009

Stollenian Army Quits Field!!!

The battle for Pickelhaubewicz over, Stollenian Colonel von Grundig leads the shattered remains of his army from the field around the village. . . and, indeed, from the Duchy of Schleiz, which now must be ceded back to the Electorate of Zichenau. Colonel von Grundig, at the head of his troops, puts on a brave face, but he must surely be thinking of returning to the family estate in Courland and a rather more quiet life than he has enjoyed in recent weeks. Meanwhile, from the heights just to the east of Pickelhaubewicz, Major von Hirschbiegel and his aide observe the departing Stollenians. Ever the gallant and fair victor, the good Major raises his sword in salute to his stalwart foes. Here's a panorama of the whole scene as it unfolds. Imagine the shame von Grundig's men will feel as they march back into Stollen proper, toward the capital of Krankenstadt and their Grand Duke, Iriwn-Amadeus II. Well, at least the gun wasn't abandoned! And as the sun sets in the west, wha

Another Company of Von Flickenhoffer's Fusilers Almost Done. . .

Well, things are almost finished with the 2nd Company of Von Flickenhoffer's Fusiliers. Just the metallic trim on the rear of the fusilier caps, which I will do in a jiffy this evening, and then they are all ready for the usual coat or or two of Future/Klear acrylic floor finish. The Grand Duchess is having a "Gals' Night Out" here this evening with about a dozen female friends and colleagues, so I have been banished to Zum Stollenkeller from 7pm. How fortuitous! It doesn't get much better than one's wife actually sending you to the basement painting/radio room for an undetermined length of time. Here is a close-up shot of the company NCO, Feldwebel Heinz Drapp, whose status is indicated by his white wig, something I do in my infantry units to help keep everybody sorted out on the tabletop. It's probably not strictly accurate historically speaking, but I don't know much about the insignia which might have been used in Frederick's or Maria The

The 2009 Painting Schedule. . .

No teaching this morning, so it's time to fix another cup of coffee and enjoy a somewhat more relaxed day. It occurred to me yesterday evening that some of you might like to review my planned painting queue for the remainder of the year. Only about ten months of it left. Yikes! Where does the time go? At any rate, the plan looks like this: 1) Finish the 80-figure Von Flickenhoffer's Fusiliers (Die Blauen) . 2) Paint the third squadron of Revell Prussian hussars, which will become part of the 11th (Prinz Albrecht's) Hussars . These two units will complete the Army of Zichenau, which in my little corner of the universe stands in for Young and Lawford's Imperial Army, being roughly the same size and strength. 3) Paint a 30-figure regiment of RSM Austrian cuirassiers for Stollen. I'll leave most of the horses black, drybrushing with some very dark blue, which will speed up the painting process immeasurably. 4) Paint a 60-figure regiment of Huzzah Prussian muskete

Blue Facings Finished!!!

Greg Horne mentioned in his article on blogs and the wargaming hobby, which appeared in an early issue of Battlegames in 2006, that a blog will help keep you honest. And, indeed, it is true. You can see from these two photographs, taken before bed last night, that I have finished the mid-blue facings on "Von Flickenhoffer's Fusiliers (Die Blauen)", but much remains to be done before the second company is ready for its shiny coat of Future/Klear acrylic floor finish. Nevertheless, the figures have already taken on a pleasing appearance en masse, though I am sure that this is largely thanks to the lovely RSM figures themselves rather than my painting. Truthfully, these figures look good even in their natural metal state. Nope, you needn't worry about my state of metal health! Now, here's a single figure from the batch up close and personal. A quick once over reveals that he and his fellows still need the following colors applied: brass sword handles and scabba

Reelin' and a Rockin'. . . .

Hardly John, Paul, George, and Ringo, but we still enjoyed ourselves immensely! From left to right, Paul, Steve, Kenny, and Stokes -- The Indras. Yesterday afternoon/evening was pretty successful for our public debut . Unfortunately, we took the stage without our promised soundcheck and were a bit rushed, but our set of six songs went over remarkably well all things considered. The audience, who ranged in age from 3 or 4 to about 65-70, was highly enthusiastic and gave us a good response. There was even some dancin' and jivin' in front of the stage by younger audience members. Various other acts were on the bill too, all equally talented. Who would think that a bunch of people with advanced degrees, who have made a life of studying, writing, and professing would display such a surprising array of talent? Certainly not our students, many of whom, I would bet, were taken by complete surprise. Over $300 US was raised for the McLean County Autism Society too, so it was an aft

At last -- The white is all done!!!

Little by little, I am getting there with the current batch of 80 RSM95 Prussian fusiliers. Sigh. Things just keep getting in the way, and most evenings by 9:30 or 10pm, I just don't feel like sitting down to paint. That and, to be honest, I've been suffering from painting fatigue I think. BUT, now all of the white is finished (FINALLY), so I can move to the relatively easy mid-blue facing color and all the rest. In any event, the figures are finally beginning to look like something more than 25-28-30mm black blobs! So, in the above photograph, aptly entitled "Snowblind A", you can observe the 2nd company all dressed up in their ranks (yes, pun intended). Look carefully, and you'll see the tan undercoat showing here and there from below the white. So far, I'm pleased with the appearance of these small, metal men. I won't use the word tiny, because that would be an affront to their collective 30mm/1:60 scale sensibility! The second photo (above) is


Unfortunately, all of our wonderful snow here in Central Illinois has gone thanks to a February thaw and unusually warm temperatures last week and through this past weekend. No, I am referring to the recent use of Games Workshop "Skull White" on that second, company-sized batch of RSM Prussian fusiliers for the last couple of days. Photos will follow tomorrow or Saturday, but I can report that most of this tedious work is just about done without too many mistakes that require touching up. So far, I've managed to complete the shoulder belts, gaiters, and breeches on all nineteen figures along with the waistbelt and vests. Just eighteen coats to do now, but I find that these always go much more quickly than the breeches and gaiters for some reason. Working with white has always been a something of a chore, especailly when virtually all of the uniform IS white. The trick, I think, with acrylic whites is to: 1) Add a tiny amount of water to the container of paint right o

I had that dream again last night. . .

You know, that dream. No, no, no. Not that dream, but THAT dream. The model soldier dream, silly! So, I'm in a hobby shop somewhere and stumble upon a shelf full of mid-18th century plastic soldiers in boxed sets, much like the Revell SYW sets, but somehow different. Must be in subconscious anticipation of that Zvezda Prussian grenadiers set later this summer. Anyway, the Grand Duchess is standing behind me, just to my left, in the dream as I'm pulling all of these different boxes from the shelf and handing them to her, saying things like, "Wow, I can't believe the prices on these!" and "Those have been out of production for years!" At which point I woke up, realized it was all just a dream, and, deeply, sleepily resigned, put my head back on the pillow and returned to slumber. I always have mixed feelings about occasional dreams like this. On the one hand, they are lots of fun when you remember them. But on the other hand, they are a tiny bit fru

Tedious Tan!

Thanks goodness! The tan undercoat is finished. And now I can move onto the more interesting parts of painting this latest batch of the 80-figure Von Flickenhoffer's Fuslieers. So far, the completed painting looks like this: A) Two coats of black gesso for the base coat B) Green bases C) Fleshtone D) Hair -- white for company officer and NCO, brown for drummer and enlisted men Next up in the painting process are the following items: 1) White shoulder belts 2) White gaiters, breeches, vests, and coats 3) Mid-blue cuffs and facings. The turnbacks are white for this regiment 4) Mid-blue (left) shoulder straps Following completion of those, it gets really easy with metallic colors for the musket barrels, bayonets, badges on fusilier caps, and the like. I am making time each evening this week to paint, so that I can finish this batch before next weekend and hen begin on the third batch in the following week. What's the hurry you ask? Well, there is a game coming up with Jeff H

Creaking Back into Production. . .

Here's a rather dark photograph. But it does show that I spent some time last night working on the next (second) company of Von Flickenhoffer's Fusiliers . I always like to start with the green bases, followed by flesh tone on the faces and hands. These two preliminary steps make the figures come alive, to my eyes, almost immediately. And doing the green bases early, while my enthusiasm is high, saves having to do this admittedly less than exciting step much later in the game when the figures are all but finished. And here is a picture of the tube of fleshtone I've used since the winter of 2001, when the Grand Duchess and I began skiing and spending time together up in Minneapolis, Minnesota -- although neither one of us realized at the time that we were "dating". But I digress! Prior to my discovery of alkyd colors, I had always used pure oils for my fleshtones simply because good ol' Mom, who is an artist, had an extra tube lying around, which she gav