Thursday, 7 October 2010

ie ie ie ......him go buggerup

Due to a small technical malfunction with the heart those systems reliant on said power source (ie me) have gone down temporarily, normal service has and will be interrupted for a short period. 

Regular scheduling will be resumed as soon as our technicians (ie quack quack) have located the problem and we will endeavour to return you back to your normal programs upon completion of repairs (ie drugs?). Please enjoy this repeat of On the Buses with Reg Varney.

Saturday, 14 August 2010

Nothing to do with wargaming again but I'm a renaissance type man, Roger Waters & Pink Floyd-isms

I love a good guitar solo/duo

There you go, feel all chilled and relaxed now?

Brass effects

Just posted this (poke me with your mouse) on figvfig about a quick brass painting exercise I was mucking about with. Some of you may find it interesting, the photo's didn't turn out too bad and I think the effect might work well on brass or bronze armoured troops


Friday, 13 August 2010

Women and painting = latest work in progress


Not quite what you had in mind, don't worry me either.
What started out as "I might do some painting" ended up being "you will be painting the bedroom"

Which then became, "the spare room will need to painted first" because "we will need to move our old bedroom furniture in there while you paint the bedroom"

Hang on a minute! What do you mean "old" bedroom furniture? Apparently newly painted bedrooms must have newly acquired bedroom furniture, stands to reason     ..........huh?

So let me get this straight.

Finish painting a seven years war battalion = paint bedroom + paint spare room x new bedroom furniture but only when newly painted bedroom = new bedroom furniture.

The joy of it is that the house is of very old hard wood (bloody hard) construction, the timber has had 87 years of shrinkage so all the joints in the walls and ceilings have to be raked and filled, nails are virtually impossible to pull out and if you can get one out in one piece you have to wait 10 minutes before it is cool enough to pick up, oh what joy!

Figure painting postings will be sporadic if at all for a couple of weeks, annoyance levels will be high, blood pressure will be critical (she who must be restrained is threatening to helping me, good grief).

I have been toying with the idea of black undercoating one of the door frames and giving it the three tone Dallimore/Foundry special for a laugh while she's not about *sigh*.

It's enough to make me take up warhammer and have a game with the spotty, volume 11, teenagers down the GW shop ...........or put my head in a toaster oven.

Friday, 6 August 2010

Painting Lally's Wild Geese Regiment

Originally this figure and his 3 colleagues had been primed for the Piemont regiment however I found the primer too dark and put them aside for cleaning and repriming with a much lighter grey primer that I had been originally using, as is so often the case a stuff up led to one thing that led to another and a half decent paint job resulted. 

One evening while giving my eyes a rest I decided a change from painting white uniforms was needed, what about those figures I had put aside, how could I avoid cleaning and repriming but keep the momentum going on the French? Seeing as how my French SYW/WAS army would contain a number of Infanterie Entrangere I decided to scout out a suitable regiment that would fit the cut of uniform and equipment, but where a darker primer might be used without giving the game away, happily the Regiment Irlandais de Lally Tollendal of the Wild Geese seemed like it might fit.

This is the darker primer grey I used which is pretty much a standard car primer grey, way too dark for the white grey of the French uniform and no where near the white undercoat I'm determined to make a success of, eventually. The figure was given a wash with Artist Acrylic black brown which differs from the panes grey the French infantry figures are washed with.
I'm painting quite a bit with washes or well thinned down paints and find a shading wash over the primer first seems to carry the shading effect through to completion of the job.

View from the rear, I had thought of giving the Irish greyish cloth packs hence the blue wash but stuck with the linen coloured cloth in the end. You will notice that when the next photos appear that the they don't have the facing colours, this is simply because the primer photos that fit with the figure below turned out pretty poor so I quickly took a few new photo's of one of the others lads waiting to be kitted out.

When it came to painting the coat it didn't take me long to realise that I was going to be rowing up 'that' creek without adequate means of propulsion in a prickly canoe. Just going over the undercoat with red paint or wash was not going to be viable, the undercoat was too dark and the approach would need a re-think, if you look closely at this feller you can just make out he has already received a thinned coat of red paint prior to the rethink. Similarly it didn't look like a highlight with white first would get a desirable out come either so falling back onto an idea which came about with a hard plastic roman figure I painted recently I decided highlight over the aborted red with an orange highlight and then paint the figure with thinned red wash and hope the whole lot blended together.

I only painted one half of the figure first of and used very thin wash (4 water : 1 ink maybe weaker) in case the whole idea turned to cack. Good news, as I started laying on the wash the effect I was looking for seemed to be coming together and I splashed an another coat (although this photo doesn't do the shade of red much justice), this is roughly about five (!) coats of thinned wash.

Eventually this would recieve another two coats of 1:1 wash which you will see later on (last three photo's) or the earlier post if you have been looking around.  Feeling pretty confident I had a plan to work with I started on the other side of the miniature.

So here it is (shown above), working off my cunning plan I thinned down a coat of red paint which left the darker areas of the brown black wash over primer to suck in the light and provide the shade and picked out the highlight points and larger flat areas with the orange to reflect the light. Well time to splash on the red wash and see........

..........I think it worked out ok for something that was going to take a swim in dettol or acetone.

Quick note on the photographs, I had adjusted the camera aperture setting (going into manual territory ??? oh my gawd) and switched back to the 'chrome film' effect for these shots as this gave a very good representation of the shade of red under lower light conditions and this (link) is a pretty accurate representation of the colour and hue under higher (filtered sun) light conditions.

I'll wrap this little painting saga up tomorrow with paint brands and names for those that might be interested, but right now I think I might go and watch Mark Webber win the Hungarian F1 race AGAIN, strange I never get sick of watching Vettel being beaten by his team mate. ;-) Brrrrrrm....

oink oink!

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

SYW French Grenadier: Peimont Infantry Regiment #4

The Regimental Officer made an appearance a week or so back and now it is the turn of the grenadier, as with the previous post these photos are to help my poor old peepers before I decide to motor on with the rest of the unit.

I t gives the eyes a break to take the photos and then view them on the screen where it is much easier to pick up on any detail, hence the combobulator keyboard and other desky type stuff in the background.  More detailed shots of the painting process will follow with a description.

The uniform for this regiment remained fairly well unchanged for much of the 18th C, with the waistcoat colour being the major change.

I'm a little surprised that the cross belts come out quite tan in the photos, as with the Lally figure, even though they are a cross between a buffish dirty brown in the lead. Similar with the cartridge box which is a much darker tan colour where as here it appears the same shade as the belts.

Overall there is only a few differences between the line infantryman and the grenadiers as far as the figure is concerned, these being the sabre and the moustache. A few more exist in uniform colour such as the hat lace is considered to be gold-coloured (not gold) lace as opposed to yellow hat lace in some sources and brass buttons as opposed to yellow buttons.

All these details can be argued till the cows come home, my two main criteria are is it accurate enough to be easily identifiable as the regiment it is painted as and secondly does it please me. This is pretty close to satisfying those criteria.

Reference sources Mouliard Les regiments sous LouisXV (above), the Osprey No 302. Louis the XV's Army (2), Kronoskaf (below) and Pengel and Hurt uniform booklets. Once again sources vary slightly, take Kronoskaf plate below sourced from the Lucien Moulliard plate above one shows a black cockade and the other white? I think white looks better, hoorah!

SYW Irish in French Service: Wild Geese Regiment Lally's

A few pics of the finished Infantryman of Lally de Tollendal Wild Geese Regiment, Irishmen in French service. It is thought that by the SYW it is more likely to be Frenchmen in an Irish regiment in French service, but I'll let others with more time to argue that one out.

These photos have been taken as part of my final check (poor eyesight) before I finalise the colours and uniform details. Basically to make sure I'm happy.

Unfortunately with uniforms from the 18th C (French in particular) uniform regulations varied quite a bit in detail, then compound that with modern reference sources which vary just as much on a given period of  the uniform regulations, then add on commanding officers attention to the official regulations.... blah blah blah......

I have found two wildly different shades of green for facing colours and hat trim has been shown as either yellow or white. As far as I'm concerned this is my preferred shade of green for the facings however the hat lace I may change to white, although that may necessitate changing the buttons to tin, it just doens't end 8)

The colour for the linen sack and leather shade for the accoutrament  I found pretty acceptable (though some may find the leather isn't buff enough). The majority of the Wild Geese regiments probably had turnbacks on their coats and lapels although I have found two plates where Lally's doesn't show this so I'm going with the standard French uniform 'cut of coat' for this regiment. I'm not decided what to do for the other Wild Geese regiments as I may have to source a figure outside of the Minden range or do some conversion work on a figure with turnbacks and lapels.  Have to wait and see how the range pans out and whether the little details are such as packs etc are of as much importance to me as the turnbacks and lapels, if it gets too hard I suspect not ;-)

As I mentioned earlier these are more or less photos of a final draft (of the figure) nature of which many are taken along the way just to aid with getting a clear view (I must get to the optometrist). I have taken a series of pictures with the view of detailing the painting process which I will post later with those details

Two of the sources used in the research, the lower is from the excellent online SYW resource Kronoskaf and the upper the equally good Mouliard Les regiments sous LouisXV online resource for the Moulliard plates of the French Army of, yes you have guessed it, Louis the 15th.

Saturday, 31 July 2010

A Foundry Visit My Initial Response..... Things That Make You Go Hmm

This was going to be a posting on the TMP site (18thC discussion) until I gave it some consideration and decided not to chide the manufacturer on Bill's site but post it here instead. I would welcome correcting if I have misrepresented but believe it is a well considered post and is my personal opinion only.

Hello TMPer's

John Clements wrote in an earlier post......

"You also mentioned Russians and obviously won't be interested in Foundry,"

Well it struck me I have never been to the Foundry site, seen plenty of them in the early and mid norties in WI (ad nauseous) so I'm not an innocent by any stretch of the imagination, but I thought one should take a look, eh what?

My initial response

What in the name of bleep'n 'ell, 2 points, fit for purpose and value for money neither of which seem to be high on the foundry agenda. First let me background my visit, ok so this is going slightly off topic as far as SYW Russians are concerned but I noticed they produced some Victorianna figures which may suit my other project (steampunk). 

Let me start with value for money 1 x Queen Victoria 3 quid and 60 new pence! For a stumpy dwarf? I'll gladly lay down that sort of dosh at Freebooter or Darksword, but not for that..... thing. Honestly if it wasn't for some quality painting it wouldn't rate for the price, at first or second glance, I found this to be the case with a number of figures.

However if I was to buy three Queen Victoria's I can get 'em for the knock down price of 9 pounds and 72 shiney new pence but what do I do with the two doppelgangers,  there is no reasoning to the special deal at all and is simply not a fit offer. As for the sculpt, I understand that wargames companies tend to like their figures a little chunky but what the? OK she was a big lass but it wasn't the only figure I looked at with this problem.

The 'Sherlock and Dr Watson", the same applies 19.44 for three sets saves me 2.16! What to do with the other two sets? At least the sculpting was quite tolerable on these chaps. Then there was the '8 Jack the ripper's' set, it confused the hell out of me...... Maybe I have incorrect end of shtick Victor, but a specialty figure range should have some specialty figure range quality to go with the price, I dunno, maybe it's just me.

Now I did spend some more time trawling around their wares but am yet to be convinced that it is worth a second look, which is sad because I had been under the impression (maybe the WI hype) that there was real quality and ergo value for money to be had. Unfortunately all I could find was small high detail boutique manufacturer prices for 'gaming quality' figures. Perhaps they'll do a boxing day sale and I can refill my stocking?

I guess I now understand what you meant John.


As I mentioned at the outset of this post I'm happy to be corrected if there is something I've missed but from where I was sitting purchasing their figures seems to be an expensive exercise.

EDIT: I has occurred to me that I'm looking at the foundry thing all wrong, maybe I should view it from a business perspective and as such I probably am not the target market Foundry are aiming for. I grew up on Charles Grant and pittance wages as a 15yo apprentice, not Warhammer, instant gratification and shoosh pocket money ;-)  

(yes that is an attempt at old fart humour and not to be taken seriously, bet someone bites)

Friday, 30 July 2010

The postman always rings twice, oooer its Luftpost!

Apparently Nina has drifted past Chez Pig in one of those red balloons today.
Oh goodness me, 
oh me oh my, 
is that a clockwork fairy
in the bag I spy?

I wonder what else is in this bag of tricks, 
hang on........
theres not one clockwork fairy, 
well bugger me, 
there's six
You cant have clockwork fairies just fliting about
Here's the boss
A steampunk fairy, 
to take control 
and give em a clout

Dont know why 
I order those skulls and things
but heres a nice shot
Of the steampunk fairies

wait for it.........

Steam powered wings

Thursday, 29 July 2010

A Roman army by post

Well the first order from the night (knight*) of credit card irresponsibility has arrived and it's a bewdy!
The Roman starter (starter! I'll need a bigger house if this is the starter) army has arrived. I'll have to admit to being a little shocked at the size of it. I just went back to the Warlord Games web store to check up on how much was in the box, oooer!
I cant be bothered checking it's all there just now (having shocking headaches and very blurry vision for a week, very annoying) just being content with the mass of contents will suffice, my enthusiasm is being somewhat curbed by a dull throbbing. A trip to the doctor and dentist should have it sorted soon enough
If your ever thought about buying one and wondered about the size of the starter armies this shot would provide you with some scale, that is a 27" monitor in the background and my special paint pig "pig'n tea break" (guess - one of my all time favourite tv shows) super mug along side.
Numbers of figures are easy to get your head around the volume with sprues and so on is the surprise. Excellent value at around forty seven quid, no vat tax for OS customers and no postage for July. That is what I call gentlemanly behaviour, eh, what do you say Miss Lizzy?

*Hmm, the Royal Order of the Knights of Retail Philanthropy, Has a ring to it ..... or is that just the ringing in my ears?

Friday, 23 July 2010

one for the bird lovers

and a reward for letting  me bore you all to tears with the last post, if only the little blighters were quieter.
Perhaps I should stop feeding them, they'll only make more noise if I do....

A tale of too much, way too much .......and probably too long, but it has clockwork fairies!

This is a short tale of woe about the internet, pay-pale, wargamers and too much sugar and caffeine

I have recently been banging on on about my Mindens SYW Miniatures and painting, and this, and that, and probably the other as well (yes a deliberate use of commas). This week I had promised myself a few days to knock over some of the backlog of AB Napoleonic figures (which one should do if they have such a backlog). Occasionally while I was waiting for paint to dry on the AB's I would spend a bit of time on my white undercoat painting, trying things out as it were. Come Wednesday painting Napoleonic French was starting to get on my tits and I was thoroughly sick of the site of the sight of them, at the same time I was quite happy with the way the white undercoat painting had progressed on some Frontrank SYW Frenchy test pieces. far all pretty standard paint bench stuff, huh?

Well they say a change is as good as a rest, and taking into account the details described so far the Minden SYW figures looked as fair a proposition as anything waiting in the painting queue to offer a break from Napoleon lads, and before you could say S-car-go under the brush they went. It was hard going at first but as She who must be restrained says "take your time" :-/  Well it wasn't long and I got into a bit of a rhythm (nothing to do with Mrs PP we are back onto painting now) and things were progressing nicely, so nicely I thought I would get the next order in.

.....but first what do we know about wargamers?

I have learned from bitter experience that wargamers will usually purchase approximately 356.8% (seasonally adjusted) more figures than they need, or can really paint before they lose interest for a bit (a bit = 8 days to 10 years on the trade weighted wargamer average), but not me, I'm disciplined (yeah right).  I have a rule see, knowing that I have the attention span of a gnatt I try to limit myself to only buying what I could reasonably expect to paint before another shiny object appears. Vague yes, but when adhered to very effective, remember I have the attention span of a small insect. where was I, uh mmbl umm, got it, ok.

So having decided that this first batch of French SYW chappies would just about be ready steady finished by the time a new batch arrived I duly jumped onto the compubulator and internetted the next battalion.  See, only buying one battalion at a time, there's no chance of me adding to the lead mine when interest starts to wane, except (oh ohh, here we go Jungo) I was starting to get a little annoyed with painting white (or a colour near enough to it) so I ordered some Prussians (a battalions worth) as well, some nice blue Prussian uniforms would make for a welcome break. Sure it sounds innocent enough but that was the start of a very slippery slope. Fortified by extra sweet, extra strong coffee. I thought I might stay up and browse a while longer.

.........oops time for another quick aside and coffee.

Some years ago now I purchased a novel of what is now known as the steampunk genre (it was sci fi when I bought it) by China Mievelle entitled Perdido Street Station. It was full of impossible yet commonplace contraptions and people. I had often thought this book and the two follow ups would be a fantastic source for wargame miniatures and machines.

.......back to my tale, "pass the coffee pot, need more beans"

I had been rereading this Perdido book just recently and while out there serf-ing the miniature manufacturers I thought I might goggle (steampunk pun) Steampunk and Wargames to see what could be found miniature wise. Well one thing led to another as it does and before I knew it I found I had ordered, seriously, some clockwork fairies, yep that's right, clockwork fairies have a look for yourselves (link), and one or two other things from Freebooter. Now what started out innocently enough as another of my well disciplined shopping expeditions for some SYW French was now, some how, becoming derailed.

But did it stop there, surely just the name clockwork fairies is enough to snap anyone out of their internet spending mania, normal people maybe, but not those doped up to the eyeballs with sugar, caffeine and the rush of retail therapy.  With coffee strong enough to melt the your Nan's shiny PVC catsuit  in one hand and a credit card cursed by the retail devil herself in the other I dove headlong in an out of control online spending frenzy. Hey I really liked that hard plastic roman legionary I wonder what else Warlord Games has. I'm now the proud owner of a Roman army, not a set, an army! Then there is the.... no I don't think I should mention anything about errr or eeek or..... lets just leave it there shall we.

So what happened, where did I go wrong? Do I blame pay-pale, a clean credit card, surely I'm not to blame (ahem). The court room media reports tell us daily that we no longer have to be responsible for our own actions, blame someone else and sue them, but deep down we all know that's bullshit. It was  none of those things, I simply needed a responsible adult to hold my hand ;-) while I was shopping on line as obviously none were present at the time.

There you have it, years of retail discipline shattered in only a few hours. I'm not even certain of what will turn up over the next week or two. Oh cheer up Paintpig at least there will be some nice surprises in store for you (gulp) and she who must be restrained. This little piggies going to pay when Mrs Paintpig catches wind of my night of excess and turns a whiter shade of pale........ we skipped the light fandango..... oops! 

On the brighter side It's going to be like Christmas, sure there will be the slight sting of "yes darling right away darling" for a while, but I can deal. 

Bet you don't have any beautiful clockwork fairies, hehehe. Next I need an steam powered air ship, a unit of foot guard in busbies on armoured bicycles........blah ......blah ......blah

If only I could get to sleep 8-]

Thursday, 22 July 2010

French SYW: Piemont

I've found that I can get a better view of how the painting is progressing by using the camera and then reviewing on the computer, it has the added advantage of giving the eyes a break. Here a few samples of some of today's efforts. 

Officer from first battalion IR#4 Piemont
The French didn't as a rule powder the hair but my officers have a strict dress code and have to look as smart as when marching to certain ......glory.

Officer coats are as near to white as possible to indicate the better quality cloth with some nice gold edging to the  tricorne and buttons

Just about Finished, the officers still have red waistcoats in my Piemont Regiment. The officers and NCO's had just traded them in for the white/grey by the SYW but I think these fellows can keep theirs.

Nasty flash line down the back and up the leading leg in the first picture. I thought I had got it off on the front of the figure, it followed the hand up to the chin which it looks like I have managed to clean up, flash is one of those things, part of the hobby. The flash or slight misalignment was very minor the major problem you have with this white undercoat and painting with washes lark is it damn well shows up the slightest thing, DC warned us in his painting guide. The line on the back is ok, no one will see it, the men of pig are valiant and don't run away, ....much. Haw haw haw sacred bloo!

Infantry of the line with a well proportioned musket.

Bad luck 'ol boy, no gold hat lace for you, yellow tape will do.

These line chaps aren't going to get fine white cloth for their uniforms.
I'll build up his coat with another one or two washes of very light grey then some ivory, I think, to finish off.

Plenty of trial and error still to go but I think I have just about finished making the "that works" list,  the "oop's, don't do that again" list of course never ends.

Wednesday, 21 July 2010


A big hello to our first visitor from Sweden, I see the Dutch (bad luck about the football) and Italians (dont mention the football) as well. Hello to all! It can only get better. I promise ;-)

Perhaps I'll have to upsize the flag display

Flag counter now upsized and relocated, I am surprised I needed to.

Monday, 19 July 2010

SYW French: roughing in

Some pictures of the lovely minden miniatures syw french Regiment Piemont (two battalions) I'm painting, progress is ticking over, slowly.

I've decided that this is the white/grey I'll be settling on for coats and small clothes (when required for small clothes of course). There is no need to rush these as I'm using the white undercoat method which is still pretty new to me so a few more practice pieces will fall under the brush first.  It is what I have termed my up-armoured toy soldier look, whatever that means.

I foolishly changed the buff tone I had originally mixed for the cross belts without success so I'll go back to the original. The rest of the colours are just roughed in for the time being as far as the pack, cartridge case, timber work etc. are concerned these are just some base colours which I will either wash over or highlight as required. Getting the right grey (one that I like) was what I was really looking for. Once again the photo's aren't the best, as was the case with the acw reb previously posted, it was a quick photo op with just a bit too much light quickly thrown around the paint bench.

I'll let him be now until I have finished mucking around with my practice pieces and made a few notes on colours etc. I'll crack on with the grenadiers and the officer once I'm confident I have my sheet together, oink!

The grenadier company waiting patiently for kick off

I had been quite keen to get to grips with the drummer, until I inked the little blighter, are my eyes up to that lacework?

White undercoat update and noisy neighbours return.....?

In between times today I quickly finished up (for the most part) the white undercoat sample acw reb. and took a couple of quickies. Lighting isn't the best and there are one or two little details that I can now see (cameras show up everything on the big screen) need attending to, but other than that he is due for a shiny finish tomorrow.

I'll post my thoughts and so on about painting him when I have the finished miniature (minus flag) ready for posting. Would someone like to nominate a Regiment for the standard, preferably one I don't have to paint myself. Shop bought or down loadable.

In the mean time the noise mob have made a return from their 8 week winter holiday, it's starting to warm up a bit now (think it touch on about 23C today) and my little friends have come home and were screaming for their food.

The amount of ear splitting screeching parrots can do is directly proportional to the awww factor, and these little monsters can set up one hell of a screech! (rainbow lorikeets)

Saturday, 17 July 2010

A gallery has been added

For those of you who had noticed and was wondering what the "and pigs might fly" tab on the menu bar was all about, it is a .......da daahhhhhh a gallery page. Yes, yet another means of boaring (oink) you all stoopid. :-)