Thursday, 11 October 2012

Burgundian Bard

I've painted the converted casualty figure (see last post) but theres not enough natural light after work to photograph him. So in the meantime...

I’m planning to create at least two units featuring commanders for my Burgundian Ordonnance army – currently Duke Charles and Antony, the bastard of Burgundy (whose portrait by Roger van de Weyden graces this blog). I wanted to do something a little different with these mounted men at arms figures so they’re easily identifiable on the table; such as additional flags and banners, heralds and having them all on fully barded horses, to reflect their greater status and personal wealth.

To enhance the horse armour I wanted to embellish them with some Burgundian devices that were used extensively by Charles the Bold. I’d had this aspiration since first seeing the 3-up greens of the Perry mounted men at arms figures at Salute 2011 and thinking that there must be this way to enhance the separate horse armour – specifically the Italian style ones. Horse barding bearing Burgundian devices, such as St Andrews cross and steel with flints, are clearly shown in the Swiss illustrated chronicles of the wars – either embroidered onto fabric covering the horse armour, possibly painted directly onto the steel, or embossed into the barding by the armourer at the forge – the latter method exampled by the wonderful ‘Burgundian bard’ at the Tower Armouries (although it’s dated a little later around 1511).
The solution has been found and made for me by Oliver James of Steelfist Miniatures. Oliver has sculpted two wonderfully detailed crosses with steel & flints (taken from surviving Burgundian pavises and tapestries) from Procreate putty. From these he’s made silicon moulds that allow me to reproduce them by pushing in athin layer of putty. When it’s hardened these are then glued to the horse bard (once the moulded rivets etc are smoothed away) and then blended in with more putty.

I’m extremely pleased with the results – the detail on Oliver’s sculpting is truly phenomenal and exceeds my expectations. I have no idea how he manages to sculpt such intricate pieces, as he does on his recent Samurai commanders. So here is the ‘Burgundian bard’ horse for my bastard of Burgundy – using the metal Edward IV figure – as he’s nicely posed to lead his troops with a cry of “A St George!, A Burgoyne!”

I’ll post up the painted version of him when done. However this will be a little while, as the figure needs an accoutrement that Oliver is currently sculpting for casting in metal.


  1. Excellent looking conversion and I can't wait to see it painted.

    I hope you don't mind, but I nicked a pic to illustrate a blog post. I've linked back to here and credited them to you of course. I can obviously remove it if you're not happy though.

  2. That´s a brilliant idea. it could be used for loads of such stuff.

  3. No problem at all Jim - I often visit your blog too. Simon.

  4. Ah, I wondered who'd been leaving rings on the coffee table...

    Cheers for that!


  5. Bloody hell!!! that's excellent!

  6. Fantastic detail, looking forward to seeing the finished results.


  7. Now that is very innovative Mr.C! A lot of potential there and some excellent collaboration.

    Looking forward to seeing the result.


  8. Truly inspiring. The devices enhance the barding greatly. Chapeau!


  9. Looking good. Always nice when a plan comes together and this one definitely is.

  10. Your attention to detail is outstanding. Looking forward to seeing the finished article.

  11. Fantastic idea and great execution - chapeau. I really like the figure and am looking forward to see it painted.
    Best regards,