Monday, December 31, 2012

Canada hurray!

Oh - there's one last posting that I have to do for this year.
Regular visitors might remember that once upon a time, I painted a nation-specific figure everytime I got a 100st visitor from a specific country on my blog.

I must confess that I haven't had a closer look on my blog statistics for a while. Additionally, my mind was too occupied with other things so I simply forgot. Well - it's time to re-establish that good tradition.
Because of that, there will be some nation-specific postings within the next weeks, starting with:


Well. Is there anything 'Napoleonic' about Canada? Of course it is!
I painted some conversions of US-soldiers for the 1812 war - now it's time to switch to the Canadian side of the fence:

These guys represent the Incorporated Militia of Upper Canada in their early (green) uniform.
I found these uniforms on this blog, which contains tons of valuable uniform pictures for this specific war theatre:

The figures are British Peninsula infantry from HaT. Thanks to Tom for sending me some single figures from that very large set. :-D


(...and the next posting will be something Dutchie... in 2013 ;-))

Friday, December 28, 2012

May I finish that within 3 days?

Probably not. I don't know how you guys feel about such things, but it leaves me with a slightly disappointed feeling to see so much unfinished work shortly before the year ends.
I wanted to bring at least my Spanish Walloon guards onto an adequate base, but it's still stuck in elementary groundwork stage. *sigh*
Btw - I made my first experiment with figure modelling. As you can see, it didn't come far. I already got the creeps building that b* wire model. When it was ready, I started with that greenstuff thingy. Well. It is sticky. It is gluey. It is loaded with lots of Bisphenol A. And although I worked in the way mentioned in all those how-to's (including rubbery rubber gloves), I ended up with that... dunno.
It was an experiment. Starting to put the greenstuff onto the wire model, it bend itself into odd positions. Maybe I'll make soe sort of scarecrow model out of this. Or abandon it completely.
Seems not to be my part of the story anyway. X-D

So... just have some relaxing rest-of-the-year-days. I'll be back in 2013!

Friday, December 21, 2012

This world ends in 1.20 minutes

Well. Depending on where you are. Or am I wrong?
Dunno. I don't believe in this sh... anyway, so why should I care about all these end-of-the-world-babble, eh?

What I actually know is that it's only three days left until christmas and that the children are already pretty curious for the presents and the xmas meal. So am I - although in my case, it's all about the meals. ;-)

The strange thing is that at this very moment, I cannot show you any new pictures because everything that I've finished in the past two weeks is either already intended for the painting competitions of next year (and yeah, hussars are a pain in the a**, Ben, if you read this - I can fully understand you) or for some special presentation on this blog. Later on - because I still miss a delivery containing two very urgently needed figures. Can you hear me, Tom? *sigh*

So what can I do? I just lean back, make a snapshot and wish you a...
All the best for you and your families! Make a wish and always remember: it's not about getting presents. It's about giving! ;-)

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


I'm really puzzled. I have had to downgrade myself.

You know - I started that pre-bardin uniform project quite a while ago and since months, I had some unfinished units standing in my cabinet. When I recently decided to finish these units, I faced a strange fact: my painting style has changed quite a lot during the last 15 months. Having a look at the older work of mine, I had to emulate an older, less detailed way of painting.

Strange fact. But I hope the difference is not too obvious. So here they are, finished at the end:
Naples light infantry fusiliers of all four regiments.
I have also finished the drummer for the Principality of Hannover legion, the last thing missing here is the officer:

My current list of started, but unfinished units contains:
- 1st Swiss regiment
- 1st French foreign regiment
- 1st Croatian infantry regiment
- Italian light infantry carabiniers

Regarding the Italians, I guess it's better to disband the guards and velites and do them all over again - if I paint the rest of these troops and put them together on the same base, they would look far too different from each other.

This teaches me a lesson: continue the things you've started until they are finished. ;-)

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Time is of the essence

Remember the good old computer game 'Dungeon Master'?
If yes, you're something between 38 and 45 years old. ;-)

On one of the dungeon walls stood the motto 'Time is of the essence'.
This is what this posting is more or less all about.

Regular visitors of my blog know that I'm having a long-time project: the ambition to paint all possible units wearing the pre-Bardin French uniform. All on basis of a certain HaT figure set.

During the Napoleonic period, besides of many units from all over Europe, the French army fielded four foreigners' regiments. One of them was the 2nd foreigners regiment, the so-called Isemburg regiment. The regiment itself is a very popular one (I've seen it painted many times), most presumably because of its' nice sky-blue uniforms. No question - I had to have them among my troops as well.

Usually, I paint one example of every sort of subcathegory (voltigeuer, chasseur, grenadier, a drummer and an officer). This time, I failed. Why? Because of time.
I simply discovered that you can't paint some sky-blue guys, put them onto a base and that's it. This may work for many different units, but not for this one, because their uniforms changed in an unusually high frequency during the Napoleonic period. In fact, there are four different possible varieties.

Here they are, marching through the years - Isemburg grenadiers. From left to right:
1805-1806 uniform, 1807-1808 uniform, 1809-1810 uniform and the green variant that was worn from 1811-1812.

I leave it up to you to find out the subtle and not-so-subtle differences. ;-)

Oh - they've got a backside as well:
The reason why I decided to paint the Isemburgers in this way (which will in fact result in four different vignettes of that sort) is simply because it shows perfectly how the uniforms changed through time. I think the optical effect works better as if I had made four different bases, each containing a full range of figures of the same temporal period. Or am I wrong with that suggestion? Just give me your feedback, please!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Enough of the grens (at least for now)

Hey folks!

Two weeks have passed since I made my last posting. I just wonder why 'round this time of the year, the weeks pass so quickly. Christmas is coming, can you feel it?

Okay. Painting all these wooden heads was quite profitable business - my mother-in-law sold a lot of these angel puppets and... brought me the next dozend of wooden balls. *sigh*

Gee - here comes another photo of finished work. I have finished a couple of the forthcoming HaT Spanish grenadiers for the early peninsula war. It's a group of four, all painted individually in the colours of a certain regiment. I hope you enjoy them:

And - once again - the more spectacular view: the backside of these guys, showing the individual markings on the grenadier mitra lapel:
The results are really terrific - it's a very special sort of item, even among the large number of colourful uniforms during the Napoleonic period.
I suppose the next thing will be to paint the action poses, but not for private collecting. I'll sell them on Ebay for a ridiculously high price to refinance my hobby - but I'm going to make a photo of them, of course. ;-)

But this will have to wait. For this moment, I'm fed up with painting Spaniards. I have a bunch of Russian hussars on my desk, there are some fine Schilling tin figures which I have started to paint, I'm wondering about the groundwork for a single figure contest contribution for next years' FIGZ and so on and so on...

...btw.: thanks for being so kind to give me an award, Gowan. I just didn't notice it for some days and now I'm feeling very honoured about it. Guess this deserves an own posting - I first must have a look to which great artists I'll like to give away the next round of awards. ;-)

P.S.: here I add the action poses, completely painted in colours of the Guadalajara line grenadiers. Just for not opening another topic for this set.

That's it for now. Because I have so many other things to do, I sent the light infantry figures to Peter from in exchange for a couple of other figures that I needed more urgently.
May Peter do with them whatever he pleases - which will usually be a well done paintjob. ;-)

So what is my opinion about this set in the end? It's simply great stuff!
HaT has come up with a nice modelled set of figures that looks simply great when painted. The set could - as most MAC sets - benefit from containing more action or resting poses to allow a greater variety for the look of larger regiments, but that's all I have to 'complain' about.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

No. I'm not becoming lazy.

At least I hope so.
I'm currently pretty busy in politics, which keeps me away from other things for some time. On the other hand, I had been busy painting angel heads.

No. I'm not kidding. Comical little faces painted on small wooden balls. Look here:
If anyone thinks that I've gone insane - they are for my mother-in-law. She tinkers little angel puppets and will sell them on a local christmas market. I should have run away when she asked me about painting 'a few faces'. Actually, she brought me a bag full of these wooden marbles.

I hope that she will sell them all. Then it will at least not have been a total waste of time spending evenings to paint all these comical faces. *yawn*

Well - luckily, there was enough time left for continuing my other projects. The Russian hussars are going on well, but I still believe I won't finish a single one of them until the beginnings of next year.
But of course I don't want to just bother you with a handful of wooden marbles. I have completed the first of the new HaT grenadiers. From the front, it doesn't look much spectacular:
But the colourful decorated  cap lapels make them very special in comparizon to other grenadiers of that period - every unit had a unique pattern.
Ah - I love them. The other marching guys will be painted in the colours of other regiments and then be placed side by side on a wooden base. I presume that this will look really great.

So there's more to come. Stay tuned - even if the time between my posts is sometimes very long. ;-)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Quick and not-so-quick

*yawn* Autumn. Feels like, doesn't it?
Well. Whatever.

I had to play a bit. Back at Heiden, I got a set of Zvezda Russian hussars. Formidable figures, yes - but painting hussars is so... time consuming. Especially because unlike the Prussian ones, these have detailed saddlecloth that requires to paint very fine lines. I suppose that this specific little project will cost me several months. Maybe it's going to be a work worth entering the competition at Heiden 2013, but it will certainly take a lot of time.

Therefore, as I said, I had to play a bit. Experiment conditions: complete a mounted rider in under 3 hours.  The result is a quick-painted Naples cuirassier:

Nothing spectacular, I know. But well enough for the gaming table and a little relief to see that I have finished something. Having a handful of long-run projects on the list now, I need something like that feeling every now and then. ;-)

Btw - I have finished that Dorsenne guy from the Strelets dismounted French staff set. It's the guy with the sceptical face on the right side of the picture. That's one of the figures which went on and off my desk for months until I finally had the nerves to finish that bloody golden stuff on the backside of the uniform.
Great figures. I still have 13 of them left for painting. Well. 2015 would be a good date for completing that set, wouldn't it? ;-D

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Brand new! HaT Spanish grenadiers and light infantry (Peninsula war)

Yeee-ha! I got a little item letter from the USA this morning!

Thanks for the great support, Mr.D. - the Spaniards have landed right on my desk today. What does the envelope contain? Test shots of the forthcoming Spanish grenadiers and Spanish light infantry for the early stage of the Peninsula war!

I already got some sprues of the command set and line infantry which I presented you earlier on. Now I like to share with you these great new figures while they still are unpainted on the sprue:

As you can see, poses are more or less a standard issue. Plastic is, again, of medium flexibility, which is so far okay. Personally, I especially like the reloading grenadier a lot - and I find it quite funny that the grendier on guard looks exactly the same way as the convertion that I had made. :-D
The figures are of the same sculpting quality as we have seen on other MAC sets, with only a little flash to remove, especially at the mouldline. By the first look, I'm feeling very fine about them.

The people that saw me painting at the ISSC in Heiden may have noted that I had the light infantry command figures on my desk. I decided to paint them in the colours of the Barbastro light infantry regiment.
A more quick-painting oriented approach, I know. As the setup of light infantry figures shows a quite dynamic team of soldiers (except from the marching guy perhaps), I have decided to paint the soldiers in the colours of the same regiment and then arrange them in an action-oriented vignette. We will see.
For the grenadiers, I still don't know - I have a couple of nice pictures for different regiments, so I guess I'll paint them up in different dresses.

Which brings up the old dilemma again - now I have two diorama ideas, a single figure vignette in ground work stage, two single figure vignette concepts, a couple of great Schilling tin miniatures and a long-run project that suffers badly due to the fact that god ignores my request for prolonging the standard daytime to 48 hours. M-)

...did I mention that there's a complete Prussian foot army in my cabinet, waiting to be painted?

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Franznap - mystery unveiled!

Hey folks!

I'm back from the small scale convention in Heiden ( - what a great day it was! You can see a lot of pictures of that show on, including a short report from me. Have a look at it - those pictures are worth a look.

Not only that I found enough time for painting and chatting with great miniature artists, I was also able to buy the figures for my next big painting projects - thanks to Thomas, who found the required hussars for me and to Mr.Schilling who now produces the French army on retreat from Moscow (see them on

The SSC at Heiden is an event that hopefully will take place every year from now on - a well-balanced mixture of sellers and miniature artists where you can see much inspiring modelling and painting work in small scales. Really worth a visit. On the other hand, this means that the contributions for the painting&modelling contest were mostly masterclass. Well - it was impressive to see such great work and then notice my own humble paintworks standing among them. And this is the point where I have to give you some explanations and start doing some promotion.

Back at FIGZ in Arnheim, the magnificient sculpting artist Francesco Messori gave away some test sprues of his work to members of Bennos' figure forum - including me. By luck, I received a sprue of Naples staff officers and two sprues of French line lancers. In fact, Francesco has created some great figures (see more of his arts on, but that special cast went wrong somehow - the temperature, the pressure... whatever the reason, the result was really not the best - the sprue, made out of a sort of resin, that became really brittly during the process, was a complete web of plastic. So freeing the figures required a sharp surgical scalpel, the loss of some blood and lots of patience.
Whatever. I did all the best that I could in order to set these beautifully sculpted figures free and then give them a good paintjob. Because of the lack of free time, it took me several weeks.

In addition, I could not post any photos of this work - because I wanted to put them into the competition in Heiden as I promised it to Francesco. But now the time has come. Ladies and gentlemen - I hereby present the incredibly beautiful figures of Franznap!

These are French line lancers. Many figures are casted with separate arms, which gives you the possibility to create a great variety of poses. I swapped one troopers' head with the bicorne-wearing version and positioned the soldier in front as if he is holding the lance for the sergeant who is currently mounting up the horse.

The complete set contains a lot more figures, all in different poses. So just take these pictures as an example how a diorama with the complete range of figures could look like.
Well - I did the best I could. For what was a 'terrible test shot' the result is very pleasing (although the competitors in this cathegory were much too strong for me. ;-) ).

The other set of which I received some figures, were the Naples staff officers. I would have loved to have more of them, you can bet. After a similar amount of carving, I decided to paint up a group of three and make a small vignette. Here's the result:
Among all military of the Napoleonic age, the uniforms of the Kingdom of Naples belonged to the most colourful and flamboyant ones. These figures are extraordinarily well sculpted - note the different body sizes. Most times, all figures within a set have all the same size, isn't it?
The complete set contains - as far as I know - ten different figures. You can see them on in the section 'sculp&cast' under the subcathegory 'Neapolitan General staff'.
I can only say that research for correct uniforms and painting these figures was pure fun. And guess what?

I was lucky. Bronze medal in the cathegory historical single figure/vignette standard.
Francesco - consider your figures being award-winners.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

One week left until Heiden

Okay. No new photos yet, but I promise you that this will change next week.
Why? Because next Saturday, I'm joining the Heiden small scale show.

Hee-how, happy to see some good guys, have some good conversations, see some great painted figures and show 'til I drop. :-)

I have prepared two contributions for the figure competition. So Francesco - you can be sure that your great figures will get lots of attention. The only thing that I still have to do is make some labels.

Which means: next week I'm coming back with tons of photos. Watch out for it.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Spanish results

Well - I have now finished most of the HaT Spanish infantry and therefore like to share the results with you all. What I have not painted yet are the three light infantry figures (officer, cornet, NCO) of the command set. They will, maybe, follow later.

These here are representing a marching coloumn of the Walloon guard regiment:
Yes - the musket of the NCO is painted. Some details look just terribly overlighted due to my photobox, don't they? Btw - at first, I just wanted to have these figures for my Spanish mounted officer from the yet not released Allied mounted officer set. And now look how great these figures look together:
A second group has already been attached to a base, which is still under construction. These fellows represent the Ultonia (Ulster) foreigner regiment.
Finally, here's an impression of how the grenadiers will look like. I made a headswap between an infantry soldier standing on guard and the grenadier drummer from the command set (because I missed to find an additional drum). These two represent grenadiers from the Zaragoza regiment.
Yes I know - the first picture is a bit unclear. I'll probably replace it later.
Btw - I contacted HaT and they promised me that the final set will have two drums inside, so both drummers can be equipped. ;-)

So what do you think? A nice buy or not?
If you ask me, I really like them. They are easy to paint, richly detailed and sculpted in a nice style (although they have somewhat fat butts, don't they?).

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Look what I found here...

Just when I need it the most: ground material for vignettes.

Can you believe that these little buggers lay in a small cabinet in the farthest corner of my parents-in-law's garage for more then three decades?

If all goes well, I can soon present more pictures of finished Spanish infantry. To be exact, I'm about to finish a marching coloumn of Walloon guards and some grenadiers of Zaragoza. But as I'm in parallel working on Francescos' test cast figures ( for the small figure contest at the small scale convention in Heiden (, I have lots of 90% finished figures on my desk - and nothing I can publish at the moment.

Sorry about that. But as a reward, you will get lots of nice pictures in about six weeks when I'm back from Heiden. Btw - I'm going to be there as a part of the guys that will show nice figures and dios at the booth of Bennos' figures forum. So if you like to join us there for a chat, you're very welcome. ;-)
(each chat will keep me from buying tons of new things, so pleeeeeaaaase come and visit us there!)

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Spaniards on the (long) run

Well. Time is marching on. In a few days, my oldest son will have his first day at school. Summer in passing by. Public adminstration is doing things that are too ludicrous to be spoken about in public. Time for a little update, isn't it?

After you've seen the blue boys AKA HaT testshot figures of the forthcoming Napoleonic Spaniards, here's a little impression of how they look after being treated with some colour:

Here's a closeup:
I know, they still require some uniform shading. The units represented here are the Walloon guards, the Ultonia regiment and the Mallorca regiment. Most of the figures will be painted as Walloon guards, because I want them to go together with the mounted Spanish officer. I've started to paint the two grenadiers in the colours of the Zaragoza regiment - for the rest, I just don't know which units I will chose.

But what I know is, that these figures are really looking beautiful when painted. HaT has done quite a good work on them. Hopefully, I'll have at least two vignettes completed for Heiden soon enough.

Monday, July 16, 2012

A little something new...

Aye. These days, you must either be in politics or in civil war business to have daily news, eh?
Well - I'm happy that after some weeks of trouble, it seems as if I'm partly getting back some time and some discipline to put my butt back onto the hobby chair. ;-)

Now look what I've got here: pretty news from accross the big ocean!
These are examples from the forthcoming Spanish infantry sets from HaT. Actually, I was lucky to get a test shot of the line infantry and the command set. In the 'tradition' of the recent MAC sets, they are sculpted nice and detailed.
HaT plans to produce also Spanish grenadiers and light infantry, although I haven't seen any test sprues of grennies and lighties - but the command set already contains a flagbearer and a drummer for the grenadiers as well as a cornet player, officer and NCO for the light infantry. So far, so good. But please, HaT, answer me just ONE question...
When there are two drummers on each command sprue, why is there only one drum?

Well... luckily, I have one in spare from the Prussian command set. Doesn't look different in any way. :-D

I'll have them painted in the colours of the Walloon guard, so it fits with my mounted Spanish officer from the Allied Officers' test sprue I got last year. Hopefully, I'll manage to finish them until the model show in Heiden.

Yes, I know. I'm much too slow at the moment. Too much stupid paperworks. Too much crazy politcians' work. Too much family business. Well... I wanted it that way, didn't I?
I have two wonderful sons and they give me so many great moments, that it's worth to be distracted from painting, isn't it? And when times are bad, only the one who can't rely on his family, is a really poor guy.
Just my advise: stick to your family!

Special greetings are going out to the magnificient Francesco:
I have not forgotten about your great figures. It's just the lack of time - but I'll have at least some of them ready for the show at Heiden, I promise.
At least, I already started to work on them and even if you say that these are from a low-quality sprue, the result will look great.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Wow! 10.000 views // So here comes the Westphalians...

Thanks a lot for coming here! It's always impressive to see how many people seem to be interested in painted little plastic fellows (and my blog is one of the smallest ones).

Well - today I'm going to show you the first results of my Westphalian cavalry conversion project.
I took the fabulous Strelets French cuirassiers, carve off the horsehair decoration on their helmet crests and replaced them with self-made caterpillars. Just like that.

The Kingdom of Westphalia fielded three cuirassier regiments which belonged to the finest European heavy cavalry of their time. They were all nearly wiped out in Napoleons' terrible campaign in Russia 1812 - only a few of them survived.
These folks represent the 1st cuirassier regiment. I just put these two figures on a piece of wood to have them representable for FIGZ. I'll remove them from this piece of wood for proper basing when I have painted the whole team, which will consist of 6 riders in total.

Same will happen with this guy:
He represents the Lifeguard (or Garde du Corps) regiment.
In addition, I'll have to paint the 2nd regiment fellows, which wore a dress similar to the one of the 1st regiment. Their regimental colours were blue and orange.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

FIGZ reloaded

Hey there!

Today was FIGZ day!
We arrived early in the morning at Arnhem and were welcomed by our hosts, Benno & Remco.
In the showroom, we started to build up our own work - just besides the works of other great figure painters.
The other room was reserved for traders, wargamers and the competition stage.
As you can see, there were a lot of ways to spend some money. After all, I just buyed some new brushes and a marvellous ART tin figure from Schmaeling. Plus two single sprues with HaT figures for my project. ;-)
I have been very brave today...
For example, I did not start to collect the fabulous Brunswick infantry from Zinnfiguren Schilling ( Well - they have started to produce French infantry as well. So I'm not sure how long I can withstand spending my money at their booth...

...but I also withstood to buy some of the great houses that Fredericus Rex has for sale ( - I have been very brave indeed.

This was my table at the showroom:
Here I just put up my project work and some goodies.
And here's some great stuff from other painters:

That's just some of the great stuff that was to be seen at FIGZ - so for all people that didn't make it to the show: hope to see you next year. I'll be there for sure. Oh. And before I forget it:
I won a prize! Geez! I never won a trophy.
Ben! That's the Prussian hussar that you sent over to me. That little fellow now is a real competition no.1. :-D Thanks a lot my friend!

Additionally, I was so lucky to get some test sprues of some of Franznaps' excellent forthcoming sets. French lancers and Naples staff officers... totally great. Francesco is one of these unbelievable artists that create little wonders in plastics. Look at his website:
I had a first look at his Naples guard infantry - probably some of the best 1/72 figures I have ever seen!

So keep in touch - there will be much new stuff at this place in the future. Or in other words: