Thursday 31 December 2009

40mm - Freikorps 'Chasseurs''

Things are really buzzing here,  enjoying my new modelling desk setup and having time over the Xmas break for some painting.  Inspired by Stokes's blow by blow account of painting his cuirassiers at the Duchy of Stollen , I've finished off the Chasseur battalion for my Freikorps.

The whole batallaion ...

A closeup of the command group ...

[Figs: 40mm Irregular Miniatures Friekorps running, the mounted officer is cast from a Creartec mould. There are a couple of conversions - a pioneer and the officer's heads changed to one with mirlitons]

Wednesday 30 December 2009

Palace Interior (5) - The Library

King Leopold IV of Wittenberg is pleased to invite you to take a quick look around his refurbished palace library.

It was fortunate that the 'patio doors' were added as this enabled some of the larger bookcases and furniture to be brought into the room; a major problem was the storage and reading area for the Kings large folio books - this resulted in a rather large item - apparently it takes two servants to place a book the 'lectern'. As you can see the King is chatting to Count Hermann (probably about some affair of state, or more likely hats),  On the left Brother James is in discussion with the librarian about finding more material for his works on the history of Wittenberg.

The Field Marshal is perusing the large folio of architectural drawings by Palladio ...

A closer view of the KIng's desk, and astronomical equipment - a telescope, quadrant and celstial globe.

Monday 28 December 2009

Making the Palace Interior (3) - Pictures and Furniture

1. Pictures

These are the easiest to do;
  • firstly select your picture, browse the web find a suitable image download and size it as required. Print the picture on gloss photo paper.
  • next add the frame, this can be done by either sticking the image to some thin card and painting the frame on in gold paint and addding some moulding effect using black ink pen or using frames from a dolls house supplier.

cardboard frame on the left and dolls house frame on the right 

2. Furniture

This is the most tricky as there is very little available to buy - there are some tavern tables and dungeon style stuff from MegaMiniatures. There was some miniature dolls house stuff available, so far I've only found one pack of this. So generally I've built stuff myself from scratch. Seated figures are also in short supply, usually as singles in a pack (eg Old Glory AWI command pack and the Creepy Governer pack).

I usually make a piece of furniture for a room or concept. Mostly I use cardboard, foamboard and some plastikard strip materials. Below is a harpsichord I made up (the main structure took three attempts before I got something I felt was about right).

The current project is furniture the for the library. Book cases were needed, so I found some dolls house cupboards (take a spare figure with you when shopping - although you may get strange looks as you offer up a tiny figure to various items !). The cupboard doors and shelves were removed and painted white.

Then I built up the voids to take some images of books; I found a nice one on the net and made up a little sheet and stuck it to card. I used thin strips of sticky labels to indicate the shelves.

Also a desk for the king to sit and look out at the view through the patio doors was made, simple box construction for the drawer sets with desktop, the drawers indicated with paper.

Things are progressing well in the library and Brother James and the Librarian are checking the books have been correctly placed in the first of the large book cases to be completed.

Items left to do finish for the library
1) 2 large books cases
2) The kings desk
3) some astromical instruments to paint (from MegaMiniatures)
4) A large folio book reading lectern

So pictures of the finished library in the next couple of days. Hope you have found my little series of "how to's" useful and enjoyable.

Sunday 27 December 2009

Making the Palace Interior (2) - Windows

A look at how I add windows to my palace interior rooms. There are a number of ways to do this, depending on the scale of the windows.
a. Use windows from dolls house suppliers (these can be rather large)
b. Use windows from model railroad accessory suppliers (O guage and 00 guage are available)
For both of these you would need some sort of picture to see through the window and appropriate glazing (optional).

For the palace hall I just printed some sky on gloss photo paper, cut it to the appropriate size, made frames of cardboard and indiciated glazing bars with a black ink pen.

Materials - I use mostly paper and cardboard, and the approriate glue. Its cheap and I find it more flexible.

For the library I wanted to add  'patio doors', to act as a picture window for the King to sit at his desk and look out. Firstly I cut out a template, then made the door frames; I selected a suitable picture and printed it out and cut a clear piece of plastic to use as the glazing (you could print the phot on gloss paper if instead). All the bits ...

After assembling the basic structure I added the doors, I did this by cutting strips of inkjet labels and sticking them on - wide strips for the door edges and thin strips for the glazing bars.

After that the 'patio doors' are fixed to their position in the room. It seems the King has come to check the builders have fitted them properly and approves of the result....

The principle of constructing the patio doors can be applied to any window. Next up pictures and furniture.

Saturday 19 December 2009

Merry Xmas to one and all !

The King and Queen of Wittenberg wish everybody a happy Xmas.
As you can see the Xmas tree has just been put up in the palace, and the presents have started to arrive and be put under the tree.
Merry Xmas to one and all, and a happy new year.

Friday 4 December 2009

Guard Bombardiers ....

King Leopold and the Field Marshall have come to watch the guard bombardiers at target practice with their heavy mortars ...

[figs: Mortar crew- Foundry SYW British Artillery crew; mortars - Reiver Castings]

Wednesday 2 December 2009

1740 - On the March to Vanderhof (3rd Belgravian Wars) ...

further extracts from the History of Wittenberg by Brother James of Alt-Wittendorf ...

[previous installment at]


Elements of the Wittenberg army have crossed the River Oudear at Ingelwitz, and are marching south-west down stream to Vanderhof - their intentention to block the Monrovians river crossing point, cross the river there and effectively surround them.

The Boldovian army corps has made good progress on its march. The King and Field
Marshall pause on a small knoll to watch the troops marching past ...

The King and Field Marshall are in discussion ...

King Leopold: How much further to Vanderhof ?
Field Marshall: Less than a day's march your majesty, the advance guard is half a days march from Vanderhof, I have had reports from scouts that the place is only garrisoned by Saxe-Jarlsberg militia.
King Leopold: Do the army corps facing the Monrovians have enough supplies ?
Field Marshall: Yes, the Wittenland and Guard Corps can stay in the field another week, after that they'll have to fall back to Ottenheim and Hausdorf. I have just received dispatches from our reserve corps that they are in north of Hausdorf on the other side of the hills - they are protecting the armies rear.
italic - The distant rumble of cannon fire from the north interrupted their conversation
Field Marshall: Sounds like the our troops to the north are dancing with the Monrovians.
King Leopold: Onwards then ...
To Be Continued ...