Monday 31 December 2012

Adrian von Bubenberg

This command base represents Adrian von Bubenberg (1434 - 1479) who was a Swiss Confederate leader at the battle of Morat, using another of Pete's excellent Swiss flags (from the commanders sheet). This is the last vignette for Swiss commanders that I'm going to do until we hopefully get some metals for the Perrys EA Range - perhaps something to look forward to in 2013? The figures have been sitting on my desk in a state of partial completeness for many months, since I started the other Swiss command vignettes, so it's good to get them done.

Von Bubenberg was a prominent political figure in Bern, where he was mayor on several occasions from 1468. He led negotiations with other Confederate cantons against the expansionist plans of Charles the Bold in the 1470s, being Bern's ambassador at the Burgundian court. He was in command of the town of Morat when it was besieged by the Burgundian army in June 1476. Bubenberg successfully led the defence of the town for 12 days, until the relieving force arrived and defeated the duke's army outside the walls of the town.

All the figures have had some minor conversion work done. Von Bubenberg is a plastic figure from the Perry Bills and Bows command sprue. His right arm is from the mounted Men at Arms box, with a two-handed sword added from a Games Workshop plastic spare. The illustrated Swiss chronicles of the period show several figures armed in this way - I'm not sure if they just represent leaders or reflect the prominence of two-handed soldiers in full harness in Swiss armies. Perhaps such troops fought on the edges and front ranks of pike blocs? The head is a Perry Swiss metal with a beard added with putty. The drummer is a Games Workshop/Citadel Empire figure (of 'slotta' base vintage). I originally painted up the figure, but then decided that his attire was too anachronistic - his plumed hat is really reflective of the start of the Italian Wars (see pic below) and he didn't compliment the vignette. So I luckily found another casting and did a head-swop with another Perry Swiss head casting and also removed the odd knee defence on the left leg.

The flagbearer is another GW/Citadel figure, from the 'Pikemen of Alcatani' set, which are very usable if elements of fantasy attire are removed, in this case another headswop, with a plastic one with a putty scarf added. The halbardier is a Perry metal from one of the many Wars of the Roses wagons sets; his hand holding horse reins converted to hold a halbard. He works nicely as a soldier of Morat in his civilian attire.

And just to complete the postings for this year, I've prepared the last two horses for my next men at arms unit. They're assembled straight from the box, but with some enhanced tack, just to create variety within the unit. One has simply had the studs removed and the scalloped edges cut to be a straight edge. The other is based loosely on Durer's drawing of a German Knight of 1489, with putty and sprue hanging straps added.

A Happy New Year to's to a great 2013.

Sunday 23 December 2012

Vote for your favourite piece...

As it's the festive season, and as I've just hit a century of posts, I thought I'd try and use the voting function on blogger. So I'd like to ask you to cast a vote for your favourite contingent or piece, from a selection of those that I've done so far for my Burgundian-Swiss collection.  All for a bit of yuletide fun.

The selection is based purely and simply on those that I got the most personal satisfaction from doing.  
They are (in no specific order).

A. Lord Chalons and retinue:

B. Berne Bear:

C. Burgundian Halbardiers:

D. Swiss Pike bloc:

E: Burgundian limbered artillery: 

F: Burgundian Men at Arms:

If the blogger vote system works, then there should be some voting buttons (with the unit descriptions) at the top right-hand side of the blog. Hopefully anyone can vote - not just those who also have a Google / Blogger account. 
I'll leave this running for a week or so and we'll see where we are and which is the "people's choice".

Thanks for voting!

Have a great Christmas holiday and New Year. Thank you for maintaining your interest in viewing and commenting so generously on the sporadic outputs of my hobby... more of the same planned for 2013.

Sunday 16 December 2012

Burgundian Men at Arms - WIP. Destriers

Just an interim posting of horseflesh, largely to prove that I'm making (slightly glacial) progress with the next Burgundian contingent of men at arms. Frankly I seem to have lost my way a bit with these - partly as I've had few periods of spare time to get into detailed paintings sessions, which is why I recently dipped (no pun intended) into some faster painted figures, just to feel that I was being productive. I also don't really like painting horses - for some reason the Perry plastic horses always seem to need more attention on them than I think I can probably get away with. However I'm happy with using Foundry's Deep Brown Leather triad on horses for the first time, despite the pots I got being a very thin consistency of paint ( many thanks Stuart!).

So the plan is for all of the unarmoured horses here to have riders done and for them to be based into the next Ordonnance company of men at arms. All of these have had some conversion work done on them - as seen in previous posts and inspired by /lifted from guys on the the Lead Adventurers Forum who are doing great things with the Perry plastics. Most of them are front and rear halves cut and rejoined to produce new positions - plenty of filling and smoothing of gaps. I've also removed the moulded tack that crosses the horses rump, as I find this fiddly to paint convincingly.

I've also painted the first barded horse with the Burgundian devices added, as fully gilded armour. This would have been very expensive work to have had done and so such horse armour will be reserved for the Burgundian duke and close relatives only. I'm unsure on these gold tones. I've used Vallejo Old Gold, washed with GW black and brown, then highlighted with GW Shining Gold - largely as these are the golds that I have to hand. The pictures are all a little dark, but I'm not sure this is the gilded finish I want - I should research a better mix of tones. I also need to smooth the joints of the putty much better than I have done when I attach the moulded cross and flints devices, although they looked OK at the time, painting shows up too many imperfections. It's all a process of trial and error.