Sunday, 29 August 2010

Roman Auxiliary Spear unit

I managed to finish the command part of the Roman Auxiliary Spear unit this weekend. I haven't been able to buy the matt spray yet, but was able to eke out a last huzzah from the can that died on me last week. Anyway, here is the command section - a centurion, cornicern and signifer from Warlord Games' Early Imperial Roman range.

I also managed to photograph the entire unit, including the legate bringing up the rear. I really need to get a new photo 'studio' sorted out. Things have improved greatly since I first started out on the blog, but now I feel I need to push things a bit more.

Next up will be one of any of the following: a couple of early Space Marines, a couple of stands of Numidian cavalry to be used as HotT barbarian riders, some Celts and a few fantasy figures. However, none will go up until I get some more varnish, so it may be a week or two before the next photo goes up on the blog.
This weekend I was busy again down at the Kent Archaeological Field School. I was looking at bones and burials this time. I was there for two days looking at various Medieval and Iron Age/Roman skeletons and skulls and learning how to determine age, sex & gender (yes they are different things) and how to recognise the ways in which disease manifests itself in the skeletal system. It was a fantastic two days and I learned a heck of a lot. That should be the lot for my archaeological outings this year though as the season is rapidly drawing to a close.

Sunday, 22 August 2010

Last of the Roman Auxiliary Spearmen

Today turned out to be a good day for painting. I managed to finish off the last of the Western Roman Auxiliary Spearmen; just the command unit to go to complete this particular unit now. I can then get started on the Eastern Auxiliary Spearmen - basically, exactly the same minis but a different paint job: blue rather than green. To set that unit apart though, they will be supported by some Eastern archers that are different minis to the Western archers. All of these minis are made by Warlord Games. Once I have completed all of the Warlord stuff, I'll look for gaps in the collection and see about filling them from other manufacturers. I have seen some lovely Foundry figures but they are a bit pricey. Can anyone out there recommend any other companies for Early Imperial Romans - elephants, baggage trains and dignitaries especially.

After completing these Roman figures I finished off all of the Games Workshop Lord of the Rings Riders of Rohan cavalry horses. I just need to start on the riders now.

I also managed to complete two stands of Numidian cavalry for use as Riders with my Hordes of the Things barbarian army. Unfortunately my spray varnish spluttered out on me so I have to buy a new can. This means I may not be able to put up any pictures over the next week or two.

I was also able to put the finishing touches to another 15 Warlord Games' plastic Celts. These now just need spray varnishing like the Numidians.

On top of these I was able to complete the first couple of Space Marines painted up for use as Justice Department heavies. I am not sure what to do with these shading and varnish wise, so may just leave as block colours and put matt varnish over them. This will mean a lack of shading, but this could be achieved by using a few of GW's new washes I suppose. I'll make my mind up next weekend.

Finally, I started work on four old Citadel Fighter miniatures. I only got a couple of colours on, but they are coming along nicely. I have been going through my old RPG collection from the 1970s/80s, stripping them down and then repainting them. I still have several hundred to go, but the numbers are reducing at a fair rate.

The following seems to happen to me quite often when painting; I'll have several small units on the go over a period of time and just when I start to get really bored of them, a couple more colours finishes great swathes of them. Once I get the spray varnish, I should have quite a few to go up on the site. I am also crawling ever so slowly towards completing armies/units for various gaming systems. Hopefully I should be able to play with my painted toy soldiers before the year is out.

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Border Reivers at Birdoswald

Well, here I am back from this year's jaunt to the Lake District. As with any of our visits to Cumbria, a trip to Hadrian's Wall is always on the cards. This year we decided to revisit Birdoswald Roman Fort. Luckily for us, the day we went coincided with an English Heritage family day involving a Border Reiver re-enactment society.

As a result, I have decided to update the blog with a new banner photo at the top and a template overhaul. The picture is of a couple of the re-enactors going at each other hammer and tongs. On the left is a Graham and on the right is an Armstrong. Due to our positioning on the right hand side of the field we were naturally inclined to support the Armstrongs. Over a best of three combat (with different weapons) the Armstrongs came out just ahead!

Before the main event, the kids were involved in drawing and colouring pictures of Vikings, dressing up as Dark Age warriors and maidens, solving a find the rune puzzle and listening to a Reiver bard tell the story of a famous Reiver's search for a wife. A most enjoyable day was had by all, made all the better for the bottle of mead purchased; something I have not drunk in many a year!

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Roman Auxiliary Spearmen and Legate

I was really busy over the weekend just gone, so I didn't get time for my usual Sunday evening post. I managed to get quite a bit of painting done but only a few figures were finished.

The first mini I completed was this Warlord Games Legate. I now have a proper army leader to go along with all those legionaries and auxiliaries.

Next up is another squad of Auxiliary spearmen.

The painting tally is slowly incrementing but I do have quite a few minis that are almost there. My list of almost completed, aside from the remaining couple of Roman auxiliary units is as follows...
A couple of stands of Numidian cavalry for use as riders in my HotT barbarian army
About 15 or so Celts
A few mounted RPG characters
An Amazon priestess for use in my HotT barbarian army
A couple of early Space Marines
The Rohan army got a little bit of treatment too. I have now painted all of the Riders' horses, saddle blankets and saddles - just the reins to go.

Sunday, 1 August 2010

Romans and Demons

I managed to get a wee bit of painting done this weekend despite the fact we were busy due to it being Alex's birthday over the weekend.

First up is a Ral Partha demon. I got a bit stuck with what to do with this mini and I am not too happy with the way it turned out. I will leave it as is though, and it may grow on me a bit more in time.

Second up is another Ral Partha demon. I experimented a bit with this one by just using washes over a white undercoat. There are parts I could have done better, but I am pleased with it none-the-less. The photo has left it looking a little washed out though.

Finally, here is another squad of Roman Auxiliary Spearmen from Warlord Games.

The Rohan stuff has taken a bit of a back seat recently, but I am hoping to get onto them again in the coming weeks. I managed to get some more painting done on a few other minis that have been lounging around on the workbench for ages. Some Celts, more Romans, a few Space Marines and a couple of fantasy types on horseback.
It looks like my new PBM will be starting around the end of August. Invites to players have gone out and I have had some responses already.