Friday, February 28, 2014

A Quaint Spanish Village

Hello everyone!
Here's a little project that I've been working on for a while now but have just completed. Back in December I decided that with the number of miniatures I've painted recently I would soon have enough to game with, but I had absolutely no terrain for them to fight over. As such, I decided to build a small Spanish village. Here's the fruits of my labor, with a little "How-I-did-it" tutorial.
(Remember to click on the pictures for bigger versions.)
Here is what all of my buildings started life as, a small block of "florist foam" that I picked up at Walmart. This was cut from a larger block with a saw, as it was too thick for an X-acto knife. Next to it is a 15mm figure mounted on a painting base for scale.

The foam was then carved with my X-acto in order to get the basic shapes of the buildings down. Here is the village church, complete with bell tower.

Next came the really messy part. I used Liquitex Modeling Paste (gel medium) to cover the outside of the foam. This stuff gives an authentic looking stucco appearance to the buildings, and it dries rock hard, protecting the rather fragile florist foam structure.

I waited a few days for the modeling paste to dry before I began to glue on the roofing material and details. For a tile roof look I used a piece of corrugated cardboard that I peeled off one side of the paper, leaving the corrugation exposed. This gave a nice, tiled look. The gable and cross are made from the craft matchsticks that I have, and the door is part of a craft stick.

Here is the start of the base. It is merely a piece of 6 inch by 6 inch corrugated cardboard. I marked out where the buildings would sit, then I painted the "street" areas with a coat of dark brown paint.

While the dark brown paint was still wet, I applied a coat of lighter brown on top. This was to give a mixed brown that is an attempt to look like a dusty, dirt street.

I then painted the buildings. The walls were first coated with a flesh color mixed with light brown, then with a little bit of white, and finished with pretty much pure white. This was to give the walls a sun-bleached mud look. The tile roofs were painted a mix of red and dark brown, Wooden details like the cross, doors, window lintels and support beams wer painted medium brown.

And here's the completed village, with a church, two houses, and a communal garden.

The garden walls were made with strips of carboard coated in modeling paste. The rows of plants are strips of fake grass used in Christmas village modelling that I picked up in an after-Christmas sale years ago.

The single story house was modeled after a picture in the Black Power rulebook.

I meant to get a picture of the village with a stand of figures placed in the center of town for scale, but it didn't get done. I've designed the village to be able to hold a full six-stand battalion's worth of figures within the base. It's a bit cramped, but the stands all fit. Overall, I'm pleased with the results.

On the buying front, I recently purchased enough British figures off of eBay to hopefully complete the 88th Regiment of Foot here pretty soon... it all depends on what kind of shakoes two thirds of them are wearing; the pictures were hard to see. Anywho, I'll find that out in a couple of days.

Also, I'd like to welcome a new follower to the blog, 1/72 Figures collect & paint. Thanks for following my humble efforts, and I hope that you enjoy what you see here!

Coming up: I have some Spanish artillerymen, Portuguese infantry and French hussars on painting bases currently, so we'll see. I may get all excited when my new figures arrive and paint up a few Brits next.

Questions, comments and criticisms are always welcomed and appreciated! Thanks for looking!


Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Happy New Year, and Some Spaniards!

Hello everyone!

It's good to be back on the blog. January flew by and all of a sudden it was February, and not a single figure painted! I'm back in school, begining my graduate studies this semester, and have only recently gotten settled enough to start painting again. But enough about me; on to the figures!

Today I finished up the command stand for the Spanish King's Regiment: (Remember to click on the pictures for bigger versions.)

Like the granaderos I painted back in December, the battalion command wear the white uniforms with purple cuffs. collars and facings. Each officer and soldier is wearing a bicorne hat with red and yellow Spanish national cockade. The flags are hand painted by myself, and the designs are taken from some pictures that I found on the internet. I must say, it was difficult to find the banners for Spanish regiments from the Napoleonic wars, so I chose to copy the ones I found. Featured are the Regiment's coronel, two junior officer flag-bearers, a pair of drummers, and a private soldier.

All of these minis came from the big American Revolution miniatures lot I won awhile back, so I'm unsure of the manufacturer. Two of the minis, upon closer imspection while I was painting, seem to be Seven Years' War figures, but they painted up fine as Napoleonic Spaniards. Overall, I think they work nicely.

Coming up: on the painting bench right now I have some Portuguese figres, some Spanish artillery and more 3e Hussars. I'm also very close to finishing a Spanish village base for gaming. We'll see what strike my fancy.

Questions, comments and criticisms are always welcomed and appreciated! Thanks for looking!