Sunday 31 October 2010

Early Windmill

This beautiful illustration was taken from an early book on windmill designs. I based the Grand Manner European Windmill on the post and legs in this sketch. It gives some impression of just how big these structures were!

Miniature painting has been very slow this month, with modelling commissions taking most of my time, however I can report that two Foul Mouth Freddy stories are in the pipeline, one for Barking Irons and a second planned for inclusion in the Advent Calendar competition on Orcs in the Webbe

My long-term plan is to write a Novella featuring FMF and hopefully have it printed. The first few chapters are already written, but still need some 'cleaning-up' and detailing. I am lucky in that my Daughter proof-reads the stories, while Craig Andrews at Orcs in the Webbe will help out with producing gaming stats for the various scenarios.

Happy Halloween!


Tuesday 26 October 2010

Old Games Workshop Promotional Leaflets

In the run-up to Christmas I'll be sorting through a load of old figures and magazines which I will be selling on e-bay. In the process I came across these old Games Workshop Leaflets, the first is an eight page black and white 'magazine', while the others are just single page A4 black and white promotional leaflets. I was tempted to keep them, but have placed them on e-bay to see if they sell.

I was wondering if anyone could tell me if they are worth anything? Or whether there is a collectors market for such memorabilia? These three are up on e-bay this week, see;

I have quite a few of these older mail-order leaflets and promotional fliers. I might decide that they are not worth keeping, but thought I'd test the water with these three to see what the reaction is.


Sunday 24 October 2010

Airfix Model World Magazine

I've just read about this new magazine - Airfix Model World to be launched in partnership with Key Publishing and Airfix. The re-birth of The much missed Airfix Magazine?

Key Publishing who already publish aviation magazine like Flypast, Airliner World and Airforces Monthly will publish the new magazine on the back of the iconic Airfix brand name.

Spokespeople from both Key Publishing and Airfix are very excited about the new launch which should be in stationers for Thursday 4th November. The 100 page magazine will feature all modelling genres, but focus on aviation (the largest sub-category). The cover price will be £3.99

Given that there have been many reports of the premature death of the Airfix brand, I for one look forward to seeing how this magazine performs.


Road Side Shrine by Grand Manner - part two

In part one, I showed you how I built the original 'master' Road Side Shrine for Grand Manner, see; link

The first three photos show the finished resin casting/castings, one of which was given as a second prize in The Notables Painting Competition to Rob Alderman (who came second), see earlier posts.

Photo four shows the resin casting undercoated in Dark Brown acrylic paint over Games Workshop Chaos Black spray paint. You should also be able to see how I have modified the original casting, firstly by supergluing the roof section to the main body and building up the cement join between the tiles and the building sides with Milliput. Even though I designed the original model, I was not planning on having the roof section removable as my Flintloque themed buildings are all solid. A 'fixed' roof made more sense to me. I have also 'softened' the base of the casting, by clipping and sanding the base edges, again to fit in with my Flintloque building collection.

Photo five shows some of the main colour added, however I was disappointed with my initial colour choice of grey and white and have modified it in later photos.

Photo six has much more Cream added to the initial grey/white colour scheme. I 'stippled' the cream over the grey/white, with more colour to the base and less to the top of the building. I have also painted the slate tiles grey. You should also see where the Milliput was used to fill the area between the tiles and the building sides and is painted cream/white

Photo seven, painting about 95% finished.

Photo eight is pretty much finished I have added some detailing and rain water runs to the plain plaster walls and have built up the ground colour into the walls, to give the impression of the building 'growing out' from the terrain rather than just sitting on top of it.

Photo nine, shows the rear of the shrine. I think this shows off the texturing, that I was so keen on modelling. Once painted and dry-brushed, this surface detail just 'pops' off the model and adds a great deal of character. The base was painted Snakebite Leather with Grey/White highlighted stones/rubble to match in with the rest of my Flintloque building collection

Photos ten and eleven show the finished Road Side Shrine, I flock the based of my Flintloque buildings to match in with my gaming table. I realise that this is a little 'old school', but like the effect when gaming, plus I have over one hundred pieces of terrain based in the same way and I feel it helps to unify my games/terrain.

Photo twelve is a little indulgence on my part - two Flintloque Character Orcs from my collection.

As I wrote in part one, this is a piece of terrain that I initially modelled for myself, copying an image from the Wellington at Quatre Bras painting. I have tried to paint it as close to the painting image as possible and have had a great deal of satisfaction in modelling it and painting it. I hope you like it.


Saturday 23 October 2010

Road Side Shrine by Grand Manner

Here is a finished, painted and based model of the 28mm resin casting from Grand Manner, Road Side Shine. see; link the master of which was modelled by me some months ago. The building is based on the small road side building seen in the painting Wellingtons march from Quatre Bras to Waterloo 1878, see; link and I have painted this first resin cast to represent the same shrine.

The master is built from various materials with the surface built up and detailed with DAS Modelling Clay. I wanted to portray a plastered building, but with enough fine surface detail that it would paint-up well. These photos show the construction process and removable roof.

While building a range of Eastern European or Early Napoleonic Buildings for Dave at Grand Manner, I came across this painting and wanted to model the shrine for myself. When I showed Dave the initial sketches, he said that providing I add an interior, he would mould it and cast it in resin. The challenge when modelling such a building is making a simple plastered cube have some character. I feel I have succeeded and I can honestly say that this little building has given me a great deal of satisfaction, in fact of all the European Buildings that I have built for GM, this is the first and only one that I have painted for myself.

In part two I will show how I painted and finished the Shrine.


Friday 22 October 2010

Orcs in the Webbe Advent Calendar 2010

Just a quick post to inform all Flintloque/Slaughterloo gamers that Craig Andrews at Orcs in the Webbe is once again running a series of post in the run up to Christmas, but this time there will be a great limited edition prize for the article that achieves the most votes in a poll, full details can be found at this link

The Magnum Orcus is a very special prize, one that I would love to own. I will be taking part and keeping my fingers crossed in the hope of winning the poll.


Wednesday 20 October 2010

Flash Gordon 30th Anniversary Edition

"Can you believe that it's been 30 years since the "Queen" Flash Gordon film was first released?"

I saw an advert for this Limited Edition Blu-Ray Steel Tin in SFX, October 2010. I know that it has its critics, but for me it is a film for watching when your spirits are low and you need a boost, it never fails to bring a smile to my face..... Flash Gordon's Alive, despatch war-rocket Ajax. See what I mean!

I already have two copied, a VHS (I don't think I will ever part with it) and a more modern and new-fangled DVD copy, so a Blu-Ray is a bit of an over-kill, but Christmas is coming and my Wife reads this Blog!

I am sure that regular readers will know of my love of Flash Gordon, the early Alex Raymond comic strips, The Buster Crabbe black & white cinema cliffhangers, this film and the many, many other re-incarnations. With the one exception of the Sci-Fi TV series, I don't think there's a duff one out there. I might just settle down and watch this film - just to celebrate its Pearl anniversary, many happy returns.


Tuesday 19 October 2010

Working with 'Green Stuff'

Following a couple of interesting posts on The Notables Yahoo Group site I thought I would add some hints and tips on how I use 'Green Stuff'.

NB/ Also known as Kneadatite and Duro

1 I buy 'Green Stuff' little and often as I have heard that it can go 'off'. I have only once encountered this and cannot confirm if the fact that the putties did not mix properly was down to age, poor storage or just getting a 'bum' batch.

I have read reports that Kneadatite can be stored in the fridge to preserve it's life (even in the freezer). I tend to store it in a zip-lock bag and in the dark!

2 I also cut out the small part of the Blue/Yellow ribbons that join or touch. Once again I am aware that other sculptors do the same. I am not sure there is any truth in the fact that this contact point is any more difficult to mix properly, but I still cut it out and discard it - after all you are only talking about a strip less than 0.5mm thick.

3 I try to mix the two part equally, there are some reports that you can change the properties if the mixes are varied, for example;
More yellow and a stickier putty plus a slower setting time,
More Blue and a quicker setting time

I suggest that anyone wanting to experiment sets up a couple of test mixes and record the results.

4 Over the last two years I have found that mixing Milliput, the standard Milliput or Yellow/Grey with Green Stuff gives a firmer setting epoxy putty, I have varied the mix, but have used up to 50 - 50 Green Stuff - Milliput. This is particularly true for sculpts that need a little more 'body' for example, flowing robes or weapons, while body-hugging uniforms, buttons or super detail is best done with 100% Green Stuff.

Other epoxy putties can be used in place of Milliput - for example when sculpting 'dollies' I regularly use cheap Plumber's two part (5 minute) epoxy putties with Milliput and Green Stuff to speed up setting times.

5 For small details - don't be afraid to use superglue to attach them, particularly true of small buttons. I use a cocktail stick to place the glue and attach the green stuff with a sculpting tool or scalpel.

6 I use the 'spear headed' sculpting tool for over 90% of all my sculpting - I am aware that others like the knife edged tool. Each to his own.....

7 Green Stuff will set in about 90 minutes, but needs 24 hours to fully set. This setting time can be speeded up by placing the sculpt in a warm or hot place. I have read about people using desk lamps. I place my sculpts in a fan assisted oven (I have a very understanding Wife). Always set the temperature to VERY low or you can easily cook the miniature - I know, I've done it a number of times. I also set the oven timer usually no more than 7 minutes.

8 I find that plain water is enough lubrication. I have seen reports of other sculptors using Vaseline and even their own saliva, but water is good enough for me!

9 Build up larger sculpts a bit at a time. I think we have all tried to finish a miniature too quickly and the detail is either squashed or covered in huge finger prints! Building up the base, then the rough shape and then the detail sculpting is so much easier than trying to do it all in one go.

10 Finally - be patient, Green Stuff requires a great deal of setting time. Try working on more than one project at a time, rather than destroying detail by trying to finish a model too quickly.

(Dedicated to Uncle Rogipoos, you have no excuse now........)

The hints and tips listed above are just my own personal experiences, I am sure there are many who can add to this list - Please do!


Additional notes;
"Green Stuff comes in two parts: the blue hardener, and the yellow resin. By mixing these together you will create a green modelling putty." White Dwarf 321, page 84, The Balrog

"Chris twists the putty together rather than kneading it to help produce a better consistency." (I prefer to fold the putty, occasionally twisting it). Chris also recommends keeping the sculpting tool wet, so the Green Stuff sticks to the model rather than the tool. Chris Straw, GW sculptor, White Dwarf 304, page 102, Orc Instruction

"I cut mine into 1cms strips and never have more than 10 or so out at a time, you can freeze Green Stuff - it keeps for longer". Rob Alderman, The Notables Yahoo Group, message 11316

"I use a 'chap-stick' (lipstick like applicator to stop chapped lips) on my fingers and tools to keep it from sticking, washing your model before painting will remove any residue. Green Stuff can be mixed with 'Sculpey' to prolong the drying/setting time." Taken from 'fromthewarp', Working with Green Stuff, a how to.

"I use a 60%/40% mix, with a bit more blue. I've found that I like the hardening properties better than a 50%/50% mix." Taken from 'fromthewarp', Working with Green Stuff, a how to.

"Green Stuff is extremely soft right after it is mixed, and many people find it too difficult to use when it is so soft, so you may want to let your mixed Green Stuff sit for 15 minutes or so before trying to sculpt with it. Experiment a little and see what works best for you." Introduction to Green Stuff by Chris Cates at Gallery Workshop.

"The big problem with Green Stuff is that it sticks to everything. This problem can be overcome by ensuring that your hands, tools and the area that you are mixing your Green Stuff are wet. After you have applied your Green Stuff, leave it for about twenty minutes, as it's much easier to sculpt." and "Top Tip; You can achieve a very smooth finish on Green Stuff by brushing over it with a wet brush." both tips from White Dwarf issue 298.

"Mix up the putty (Green Stuff) well, otherwise it will take forever to set." Foundry Miniatures Painting and Modelling Guide by Kevin Dallimore, page 141

Update January 2017

I recently read an article by Bill Horan who says that Duro (Green Stuff) should be mixed to a ratio of 60% Yellow and 40% Blue. Bill uses a range of very simple sculpting tools - wooden toothpicks which he coats in one, two or three layers of superglue before sanding them to shape - either pointy or blunt. His only other sculpting tool is a scalpel.

Monday 18 October 2010

Phoenix Squadron by Rowland White

I have just completed this great hardback book Phoenix Squadron by Rowland White, the author of Vulcan 607. I have in the past commented on how much I enjoyed Vulcan 607 and so when I saw this hardback for sale in a charity shop, I picked it up with no hesitation.

The book details a threat against British Honduras by Guatamala in January 1972 and how the Ark Royal and its fleet of ageing Phantoms and Buccaneers were sent to 'wave the flag'. I would say that it is written with all the flair and 'Boys own Adventure' of the previous book and certainly gives a feeling of the sense of urgency that must have been felt at the time, however I would still rate Vulcan 607 as a better book. That said I am still happy to fully recommend Phoenix Squadron as a book worth searching out.

The author calls upon eye witness reports, personal interviews and official records to build a complete picture of the growing threat from Guatemala to the small British protectorate of British Honduras, later called Belize. I found the informative writing style and first-hand accounts brought to life this rather neglected episode in British Diplomacy and I was particularly impressed with the way that this 'factual' representation galloped along in the same way as a Tom Clancy thriller. "If only all history was written in such a fascinating manner."

I was also pleased to see detailed cutaway drawings of both The McDonald Douglas F-4K/F-4M Phantom II and the Blackburn Buccaneer S.2B included as appendix, it must be something about being brought up at the time that the Eagle Comic which would regularly include such illustrations and I would trawl over the drawings trying to identify each of the numbered details.

I would be interested to hear what others think.


Saturday 16 October 2010

Kevin Dallimore's Master Class

I first read about this new Kevin Dallimore book on The Miniatures Page (TMP) on Wednesday morning, within minutes I had ordered the book and I received the huge tome, lunchtime Friday, superb service!

I already have both the Foundry Miniatures and Painting Guide and The Foundry Compendium so when I read of this book I had no hesitation in ordering this new book.

Foundry are offering free P&P and for a limited period the books will be signed by Kevin, see this link

The first thing that struck me about this book is its size, it's huge. Over 300 pages and its heavy, so the free P&P is well worth taking advantage of. It is also very well packed coming in a folded card outer, so there should be no worries about damage during shipping.

As far as content is concerned, my fist impression was WOW, my second was WOW and my third was WOW, it is just full of beautiful pictures of painted and work-in-progress shots of miniatures and models. I have still to read it from cover to cover which will take some time, for now I have been delving in and picking selected subjects and browsing, but I just know I'm going to enjoy ALL of this book.

The different section are 'colour coded' for example; Doing the basics is blue-grey, Finishing Touches is green and Painting is purple, a nice touch as the sections are continually interspersed with Modelling Interludes, red. I like this layout, I admit that it might not be to everyone's taste but it works for me.

I will add that there are a number of sections that are copies of earlier Kevin Dallimore painting and modelling guides (that have at some time appeared on the Internet), for example the sections on painting vehicles. This does not detract from the overall content of the book as I have still enjoyed reading the how-to articles and the quality is superb. In fact I should note that the whole book just 'screams' quality, beautifully produced, illustrated and finished with a full-colour hard-back cover, non-reflective pages and solid binding. There may be some that are wondering about the cover price of £30.00, especially as I have read that there are already offers on Amazon. I am lucky to have a Paypal account that I use specifically for funding my hobby and to me this is money very well spent - a book I will get a huge amount of enjoyment from, in fact from my initial browse, I am not able to write a negative comment, not one.

Anyone familiar with earlier Kevin Dallimore or Foundry publications will recognise the style and quality immediately, loads of full colour illustrations and clear precise text. there are sections that start with The Foundry tri-colour painting technique, techniques for more experienced painters and of interest comments from renowned miniature painters detailing their own thoughts on the system. Other sections cover washes, painting metal, painting Non-Metallic Metal (NMM) and basing, but the sections that have really appealed to me are the Diorama articles which are really quite beautifully done, again fully illustrated and including numbered text showing how these dioramas were built and painted. As I have said earlier truly a fantastic book and one that I have no hesitation in recommending - 10 out of 10, possibly the No1 modelling book in my (rather large) collection.

I am sure that this book will give hours of enjoyment to figure or miniature painters (and might help me improve my own figure painting skills, we can but hope).

For more details see the link (above). I look forward to thoroughly reading it (and no doubt - re-reading it).


I've been asked if this new book is worth getting if you own the original Kevin Dallimore Painting and Modelling Guide? I would say definitely yes as the articles are much more in-depth and targeted at a more experienced painter/modeller - the contents are of a much wider and more detailed subject matter.

In addition there are many 'guest' modellers and painters, for example Tom Mainprize, Tom Weiss and Sacsha Herm.

Where as the first book is targeted as the beginner to experienced, this book is more experienced to master modeller/painter and the knowledge included in this book should help to improve your skills.

Wednesday 13 October 2010

Notables Painting Competition - We have a winner

The third Notables or Flintloque painting competition has finished and we have a winner - Tony Harwood or Dampfpanzerwagon, yes, me! I was notified yesterday evening and now need to contact Alternative Armies to arrange my competition prize.

The images below show the winning entry and the background story, which was also a condition of the entry. I hope you enjoy reading the Fencibles regimental history as much as I enjoyed writing it!

The Local Defence Volunteers or Kyngs Own Royal (Home) Guard also known as the ‘Fighting Pussycats’

In an attempt to raise a regiment of ‘home guard’ the Kyngs Own Royal Guard was formed from able bodied Orcs to defend the exposed coast of Albion from the threat of Ferach invasion. Due to long-standing army rules and regulations The Kyngs Own Guard was initially planned and raised to be an Albion or home based regiment only, these Defencibles, later known as Fencibles served without distinction in the area of Warmonger on Sea.

In particular the Kyngs Own Guard allowed older and younger Orcs plus those not deemed able to be included in a fully fit fighting regiment to take part in the defence of Albion. The Fencibles were used in many different ways, but traditionally the Home Guard saw little in the way of ‘real action’. There are many stories of ‘friendly manoeuvres’ or training missions most of which ended in mishap or downright total chaos!

The Kyngs Own was initially called the Local Defence Volunteers Force but following a visit from Kyng Georgie Porgie who was looking to relocate his Summer Palace in a seaside beach hut, the LDV’s were of great use to the Kyng – helping him to tow the new canvas palace back up the beach and away from the incoming tyde, they were renamed The Kings Own Guard and later The Kyngs Own Royal Guard when Captain Manewearer offered to buy the Kyng a Cornetto (the ice-cream not a new, small crown) the Kyng was so impressed with the new-fangled iced-cream that he declared it ‘truly royal icing!’

The small platoon is detailed here;

Captain (Georgie ‘Little Napoleon’) Manewearer – Sword and swagger stick

A pompous and well meaning bespectacled money-lender, who has taken overall control not because of experience or past heroic deeds, but mainly as he is the only volunteer who has an officers uniform! An Officers uniform that includes all the detail and trappings of a full Albion Orc Major.

Sergeant Artful Wilsome (Uncle Arfu) – Orc Bessy

A dutiful and very well bred money lender clerk who works with Manewearer during the day and acts as Sergeant when volunteering in the Fencibles. Wilsome served as a Captain in the pre-black-powder era prior to retirement but is happy acting as second fiddle to Manewearer, sometimes (politely) questioning his decisions “do you think that is wise?

Lance Corporal ‘Onsey’ – Orc Bessy and bayonet (extra long for getting it up em!)

The oldest member of the group who now suffers from acute gout was born many years before the Ferach threat - bravely serving as a young drummer boy in the army of the Kitchener. Onsey works full time, as the local butcher and is famed for his archaic weapons, his favourite being an extra long bayonet with which he has been known to scream “they don’t like it up em!”

Private (We’re Doomed) Frazier – Modified blunderbuss which fires grenades

A coffin maker by profession and a Rat by birth. Frazier is notoriously dour and depressing, (who sometimes wears his tricorne to funerals and his undertakers hat on duty). He is openly rebellious, but ultimately loyal. His previous military service was as a cook on a small battleship.

Private (Stupid Boy) Spike – Orc Bessy

The youngest Orc in the platoon and regularly ‘molly-coddled’ by his old Mum, who insists that he wears his hand knitted and colourful scarf plus matching sock puppet (used to keep the barrel of his gun clean and dust free!) Private Spike lives with his Mum and Uncle Arfu.

Private Joe Walker – Orc Bessy

The only able bodied member of the whole group - excused overseas service due to his allergy to ‘Bullied Beef’. Joe is a natural scrounger and is regularly able to ‘pick up’ material and equipment that would normally be totally un-obtainable! There is little that Joe would not do to earn a few bob. Joe always seems to be puffing on a well worn and crumply ‘ciggy’.

Private Godfrey - Sword

A Conscientious Objector and martyr to his weak bladder – Godfrey refuses to take up Black Powder arms but acts as the unit standard bearer and medic. Godfrey is not against threatening to dispatch ill or injured soldiers with his sword, believing that he is acting humanely and in the best interest of his patients!

The Kyngs Own Royal Guard wear a more traditional uniform of tricorne, gaiters and brass buckled shoes, but carry a full regimental banner, in recollection of the ‘good turn’ shown to the Kyng on his earlier seaside visit (the standard carries the battle honour Seaside Rescue, embroidered below the regimental badge). The platoon ‘favours’ of a green bow which is worn in the tricorne were lovingly made by Cissy, Private Godfrey’s sister, from some spare curtain material. They are armed with whatever weapons they can scrounge or modify, but are always full of good intentions. Sometimes known as the ‘Fighting Pussycats or Old Pussycats’- I’m never quite sure if this is a compliment or an insult.

Captain Mainwearer is a stickler for detail and tries his very best. However due to total incompetence or pure bad luck he is very rarely successful at maintaining order and it is a blessing that in the short lifetime of the Warmonger on Sea platoon, they have never actually killed anyone (friend or foe).

It is rare that an Albion Regiment does not have a motto or battle cry, but with Onsey managing to shout down any suggestions the default “They don’t like it up em!” seems to work well.

Any resemblance to persons living, dead or imagined is purely incidental! I wonder if you can recognise the characters this platoon is based on?

I had great fun converting, painting and writing the character background, and was very pleased to have won the competition.


Monday 11 October 2010

New castings from Grand Manner - update

These are the very first resin castings of some of the NEW models from Grand Manner which I hinted at in my earlier post. First up, we have the hull of the Argo, one of my favourite models from this new batch. For more details see this link

Secondly we have The Roadside Shrine, which was based on a painting showing Wellington on the Road from Quatre Bras to Waterloo. This is one of the models that I am really looking forward to painting, for more details see link

Finally, I have included this composition showing two amphitheatre and a viewing platform. This is one of the most impressive master models I have made for Dave and when two castings are shown together, they really make an impressive scene, for more details see link

I know that Dave has updated his Grand Manner Shop with details of most (not quite all - you will have to wait for some other stunning castings) of the models and now includes costings. Please check out GM at Grand Manner

These castings were literally 'hot out of the moulds' and so still need cleaning up and roofs, sails added, but I was so impressed I sneaked these shots while Dave was busy choosing biscuits to go with the mugs of tea!


Friday 8 October 2010

New castings from Grand Manner

Earlier today I met with Dave at Grand Manner - I was dropping off a couple of finished masters, details to follow. Dave and Chris (his son) were just removing the first 'test castings' of the new Ancient Greek, Medieval and European buildings, including The Argo, The Ancient Greek Amphitheatre, The Merchants House and The Wealdon House. I know I should be more humble, but these casting are fantastic, they look great and I can't wait to see some painted examples, for details check out this link

I know from experience that the production of these moulds and the first castings have taken a considerable amount of both time and money. I would hope that the return (sales) are worth all of the effort.

I plan on having a day at the Workshop on Sunday, painting and helping out with packaging the resin castings prior to CRISIS 10 Antwerp. We may even get around to taking a few photos! Keep an eye out for the release and cost of the new models, they should be up on the revised site within the next couple of days.

I have over the last year produced a huge amount of new masters for Grand Manner, during that time I forget just how many! Seeing them in raw resin and even better as painted models 'brings them to life' and it is like seeing them again for the first time. I was particularly impressed with the (very large) Ancient Greek Amphitheatre and seeing two of the casting joined up was really great. I think my favourite was The Argo and given that this was the first ship model I had produced for GM, I was even more pleased to see that the first resin casting had come out of the mould so well. In addition (as stated in earlier posts) my Father used to produce models of ships (ships in bottles) and this was a subject matter that I had until now steered clear of. I look forward to seeing this one painted and can see me producing a waterline display model of this casting (alongside a dock, with a harbour front and buildings with a temple in the background.....). Finally The Roadside Shrine (which is in itself a model of the roadside shrine from the painting - Wellington's march from Quatre Bras to Waterloo) is another model I look forward to painting and basing!

I know how frustrating it can be when someone (or a company) posts a comment on models that are not yet released, I hope you will forgive me this little indulgence, but like a little boy in a sweet shop I just can't wait to tell you all about these new resin castings.


Grand Manner now on Facebook

Thursday 7 October 2010

40mm Sharpe and Harper from Graven Images

I was recently lucky enough to pick up this 40mm pack of Sharpe and Harper from e-bay. I'm not sure when I will get around t0 painting them as I have a couple of stalled painting projects on my workbench as well as some commissions which need to be completed.

The pair of metal miniatures were produced by Jim Bowen and are sold (or were sold) by Graven Images. This image is taken from the Jim Bowen Disturbia Yahoo site and is used without permission to illustrate my purchase. For more details see; link

With reference to the painted models - I see Harper as having dark (almost black) hair and Richard Sharpe with blonde hair.

As stated above, I am not sure when I will update this posting, but the miniatures are safe and still in their blister, they should keep well. The Graven Image 40mm miniatures are some of my all-time favourites (see Flash Gordon label for more examples), the 'chunky' sculpting style suits my painting technique and I am sorry that new releases have dried up.


Tuesday 5 October 2010

Notables Painting Competition - Voting is now open

After a slight delay and the entry date being extended by a couple of days - The Notables painting competition is now up and running with five entrants, a little down on the expected turnout, but still a great competition. For more details see; link

As well as painting at least three miniatures from the Flintloque Fencibles blister (54031), entrants had to write a regimental background. In my opinion this was the best part of the competition. I'll give more details once the results are announced on Tuesday 12th October.

Good luck to ALL who took part and a big thank you to Alternative Armies for running the competition.


I keep using this official Alternative Armies photo as the competition rules state that the entries must remain secret/incognito until the results. Although I would expect Gavin to want an article for Barking Irons what ever the result!

Sunday 3 October 2010

Battersea Power Station

LIVE, the free magazine with The Mail on Sunday featured a short article last week which showed some period photos of Battersea Power Station, London.

The building which was designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott was completed in 1955 and has some of the very best Art-Deco designed control rooms with marble walls and glass ceilings. This really does show that during the 1950's and 60's Great Britain was at the very forefront of design and technology. Using 1,500 tons of coal to boil 160million gallons of Thames river water per day (with waste steam pumped across the river to heat the homes of Pimlico) Station A's 243 megawatt output was enough to power one-tenth of London, a figure that was doubled on completion of Station B!

As a source of inspiration these (rather grainy) images should go far with Pulp and Sci-Fi modellers. The beige colour control panels are a welcome change from the more traditional grey!

Further images of this Grade II listed building can be found on Google.