Skip to main content


Showing posts from October, 2011

Minden Hussar Update!!!

The most recently finished nine figures are those at the right rear of this photo -- eight troopers and an officer. 21 hussars down, nine to go!  Let's see how much ground I can cover by November 5th, which is the painting challenge deadline, established by mutual consensus between myself and several other wargaming friends around the globe.   At the moment, the figures in question have been given their basecoats of three or four different shades of Humbrol glossy yellows, tans and browns.  Tonight, I slop oil washes over these and set the figures aside to dry for 24 hours.  Then, it's on to flesh and hair on the troopers before applying a white undercoat to those areas earmarked for later coats of red and light blue.  And then lots and lots of yellow. . .  braiding, facings, girdles, vandyking, etc., etc. Here's another shot of the same formation, taken with the camera sitting on the table before the figures.  It almost looks like they are charging right for

A Winning Combination: Wargaming, Coffee, and Walking with Miguel de Cervantes. . .

  A windmill model completed here at Stollen Central during May-June 2011. At long last, I'll wrap up painting on the bridles, reins, and martingales for those nine Minden hussars today, and then it's full steam ahead with the final group of nine figures/horses.  I must admit to feeling a bit pleased about the way these are coming along.  The batch I'm almost finished with has turned out even more nicely than the first dozen.  Watch for a photo here in the next day or so. In the meantime, here is a picture of a small side project I completed early in the summer.  This slightly underscale model windmill is based on a photograph of several old mills that now reside at an open-air folk museum in Estonia, found online, which seemed appropriate for the Grand Duchy of Stollen since that geographic entity is supposed to have been somewhere in the Baltic region of Europe.  While not actually functioning, my windmill provides some nice visual interest for the tabletop and seemed

Coming Soon. . .

Just received word last night that the 2012 Wargamers' Annual by Charles S. Grant is due out shortly!  Lots of interesting things, by a bevy of contributors, are covered by this new issues, including a couple of small pieces by yours truly.  That bit of self-promotion notwithstanding, this looks like another fantastic addition to current wargaming hobby literature, which you won't want to miss, and I can't wait to get my paws on it. On other fronts, spent a happy couple of hours last night applying pigment to the current crop of nine Minden hussars.  Tedious stuff like yellow facing color on the collars and cuffs, yellow and/or gold lace to the sabretaches, brown on the girths and stirrup leathers, and so forth.  Still lots to do, but the little devils are slowly getting there.  I hope for another couple of hours this evening and another few tomorrow (Sunday), but the Grand Duchess has been away at a conference, so it's just been Young Master Paul and me.  Not too muc

A Bright, Sunny, and Cool Fall Day. . .

The Indra Club on the Grossefreiheit in Hamburg, Germany, where the Beatles played for 48 consecutive nights, before the police closed it due to noise complaints, from August to early October 1960.  The band then was moved up the street to the larger, wilder Kaiserkeller Club where they continued almost until being deported at the end of November that year. Although I am (before Young Master Paul arrived two years ago that is) an avid Nordic skier (avid, but definitely not Olympic material by any stretch of the imagination) and enjoy the winter, Fall is my favorite season.  Here in the Grand Duchy of Stollen, we have one of those incredibly blue days with cool temperatures, and the leaves are starting to change colors and fall from the trees.  Ahhhh. . .   Reminds me of when I was a child and teenager, growing up on my maternal grandparents' place in rural southeastern Pennsylvania about two hours outside Philadelphia. Which is just a roundabout way of saying that I managed to

A friendly greeting. . .

This lovely photograph is from the website and was taken by Charmiene Maxwell-Batten.  I just love the way ivy and certain creepers turn red in the fall. You might recall that I mentioned hearing from "Martin" in Yorkshire, England the other day via a friendly e-mail in which he discussed his life and wargaming interests through the years.  It's always fun to hear from Grand Duchy of Stollen visitors like this, though I doubt ol' Irwin-Amadeus II needs to worry quite yet about establishing a Board of Tourism, or some such office.   But you never know. . .  In any case, a second regular visitor-wargamer, who, coincidentally, also hails from Yorkshire in the UK, has requested via e-mail that I put him in touch with Martin.  So, Martin, if you see this, and you are of a like mind, please drop me a line with your preferred e-mail contact information, which I will forward to your fellow Yorkshireman.

The Next Batch of Hussars. . . Tally ho!

Not much to look at in the photo above yet, but after a particularly difficult week, I sat down for about 90 minutes last night and enjoyed applying oil washes (over Humbrol gloss enamel undercoats) to a dozen horses in the Minden hussar queue at a leisurely pace.  This kind of early 'painting' is always fun simply because there isn't a lot of concentration required.   That, and I have always enjoyed the aroma of linseed oil and other vehicles used with the various pigments to produce oil colors.  I suspect it takes me back to a time, very early in life, at about the age of four or five, when I would come home midday from kindergarten and sit on the floor next to my mother's easel while she worked.  We would chat about our respective mornings, and my sister and I would watch Mom apply oil colors to her various canvases that she had going at any one time.  Funny how the sense of smell can work like that, because that was about 4o years ago!  Doesn't seem like it th

First Dozen of 30 Minden Hussars Completed. . .

The first dozen hussars are finished, save for a couple of coats of clear acrylic "varnish". . . really just inflated modeller jargon for Future/Klear floor finish.  Double-click the photo above for a really ENLARGED version of the maneuvers. About to go charging across the painting table and off into space, here, submitted for your viewing pleasure are the first twelve Minden Prussian hussars, painted in, more or less, uniforms based on those of the Lauzun Legion hussars.  Time for another cuppa java and to get to basecoating the remaining 18.  Only one month and four days left to finish these darn things!