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By Rob Dean
This hasn’t been a particularly good month for painting. I had a week off back on the 9th, but, as shown here, my desk had gotten too cluttered to actually get much painting done. I’m also off this week, and decided that I would try just putting one task on the desk at a time, to see if that would help. My son has been diligently working on his Bronze Age DBA armies, so I decided that I would finally get started on the last stand of figures I needed to finish my 2nd DBA army. (DBA : De Bellis Antiquitatis, a popular set of ancient wargames rules for small figure collections to be played on a small table.) Earlier this year, I had managed to get all of my 13th C BCE Libyan infantry done, to match against my New Kingdom Egyptians, but I still needed a “chariot general” base.
Son and I have been working this project intermittantly for about fifteen years, and we have a deep stash of Caesar Miniatures 1/72 scale plastic figures. There is no “official” Libyan chariot, so I cobbled one together using an Egyptian chariot body, horses from a different (Mitanni) chariot set, and a Libyan commander pose. He’s a little too wide to be able to fit a driver in as well, so, artistic rendering...
We used to mount our chariots on a 40mm wide by 60mm deep base, but the DBA rules call for 60mm by 80mm. The single chariot looks a little lonely, and there isn’t room for a pair of them, so he and I agreed that we would generally mount a couple of “chariot runners” with each vehicle.
Most of my Libyans are done with cloaks painted to represent hairy hides from spotted cows, in keeping with the modern painting guide depictions. However, searching around for actual contemporary Egyptian depictions of Libyans came up with this (I’ve cropped a single figure out of a group of four):
I did my best to replicate the alternating rows of “eyes” and “arrows” on the general’s cloak, and echoed the pattern on the chariot body decorations because “why not?”. At least any historical nit-pickers are likely to have seen the same picture...
Here’s the completed “army”. With the Egyptians, I can at least stage a remote game without using proxy figures, although we are starting to look forward to getting together for an actual games day sometime again (probably still six months off...). Maybe my next army, the Nubians, will be ready by then as well.
It's been a while since I posted here, but I wanted to share one of my current projects. I started on this 70mm orc from Yedharo back in October. I took a break from it for a while and just recently got back to work on her. When I first saw the sculpt, for some reason I immediately pictured a blue orc. I know a little untraditional, but I like to switch it up from the standard green. One of the things I wanted to work with on this piece was the use of ambient color/light. I pictured her standing over some beast she'd killed and wanted to show the light reflecting off of that and onto the orc. Since she's blue, I decided on red for the beast. It's not the easiest thing to see in the photos (the effect is more obvious in person) but you can see it most clearly from behind. When I start on the armor I'll be doing the same thing and it should be even more pronounced there since metallic objects can pick up a lot of light/color from the other objects in the scene. I'll be painting her with TMM, so there's going to be some experimentation as I work matte colors into my metallics for the reflected light.
My latest progress has been to build the base. I'm not much of a sculptor, but I've been getting some practice in over the past year and feel a bit more comfortable tackling something like this. Overall I'm pretty happy with how the base sculpt turned out. Now I'm curious to see what I'll think of it when I finally start to paint it! Having the base is also nice as, when I start on the metallics, I'll have a more precise reference to work from for the reflections (instead of just the vague idea I had when I worked on the skin).
By Rob Dean
I gave my older son a copy of the de Bellis Antiquitatis 3.0 rules for Christmas, and he has been inspired to dust off our joint 2009 project to do Egyptians vs Hittites in DBA. That did entail rebasing some chariots, and it looked like they might look lonely on the 60x80mm stands (vice 40x60 we had been using), so I painted 8 Egyptian infantry to serve as chariot runners and put two on each base when I rebased yesterday.
Since I had some unfinished Libyan archers from BITD, I dusted them off and did four as two light infantry stands, to start an opposing army of my own.
I picked out the rest of the Libyan foot last night, but they’ll need a chariot converted from an Egyptian one (most likely).
In between those tasks, I also put a quick paint job on a Bones hordeling, who looks like he’ll be happier facing 1/72 scale opponents than heroic 28+mm figures.
Quite large, painted this for my Dad's birthday. He loves to collect hand painted knights, soldiers and such. So I think he will really like it. I could do more with the base, but the birthday is today and no time left. It took me about a month to paint and put together. I kind of like it the way it is, maybe it showcases the rock and the figure better if it is not so busy with other stuff.
The Shield was the hardest part. I am not so great at freehand and then deciding to muck it up with blood and dirt was a really tough decision. I read in quite a few places that the Pegasus was a popular figure found in Roman art (seen in pottery, mosaics and such.) Hopefully I am not too far off the mark historically, but my dad is more into the overall look than historical accuracy.
3inches 1/24 scale - hope you enjoy
By Rob Dean
I spent lunches last week on these two stands of Saxons for the Osprey Game Dux Bellorum, in which each stand is a unit on its own. All of the figures are home cast, mostly Prince August with a few spearmen from Dutkins Collectables. For the Saxon army, I'm doing it all with home cast figures, partly as an excuse for having the molds, partly as an artistic challenge. Practically speaking, there's probably more individualization and detail work than is actually necessary for a mass tabletop unit, but I like to err on the extra side...
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