Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Russian Around

I hit 39 the other day, I don't mind watching the years go past etc and I had a nice time, the wife was very pleasant to me for the week so that made me pretty happy and when I let big Jon know I was free for a game on the Saturday Jon and JP set up a 15mm Napoleonic battle for me (sweet!). However this turned out to be a double edged sword!!!
We had a great game, really great!!! JP was his grumpy self trying to hurry the game along as we fell about laughing at loads of daft stuff and I managed to slip in a wee dig about a fellow wargamer bashing 7 bells out of old baking trays because they were to tight to buy steel sheet to line their storage boxes (10mins past before the penny dropped and JP shouted out "that was me you were talking about ya cheeky b******d" with a smile on his face). Anyway I was on the winning side and it was a great day, I think I said that already?

However there was 1 thing that really kicked me in the teeth, somewhere along the way this past year or 2 I slipped away from painting my Russians. We are in the 200th anniversary year of Napoleons invasion of Russia and despite having thousands of AB and Old Glory Russians to paint I have only managed to finish 9 Russian foot battalions, 2 foot batteries, a cuirassier regiment and a horse battery. I needed to do something and do it fast!!!
So enter my new master plan! I have put all other troops out the way and cleared the workbench for Russians only using the Army Painter method I started with my Saxons. I have been finding spare time very hard to come by however the wife is onside now that she understands the magnitude of my task ahead and the significance of the year (truth be told the sister of my wife came down to visit for a few days and showed far more interest in my wee men than my wife has ever done and so she is now making up for lost time, asking questions and looking really closely at the little dudes, she also got fancy new glasses so I guess this must have helped to?). To start with I decided what battalions I will hit 1st, I only have 2 regular grenadier battalions so I figured i'll get them out the way before moving onto my 2 pavlov battalions and that's it for starters.
So where was I? Oh yeah Army Painter, well I am pleased to say it still rocks my painting world. As far as I am concerned it's the best thing since sliced bread. I'm blocking in my paint like I was 10 years old painting my airfix Germans then brushing on the dark tone, waiting till it's dry and picking out highlights on the face, trousers, belts and leatherwork. painting the buttons then a matt varnish and I'm done. I've experimented highlighting the coat but there is no real difference.
I have spent maybe 8 broken hours in total working on the 1st battalion (as well as clearing up the 2nd and also a light battery) and I really only have 7 figures still to AP and the rest are well on the way to being finished. I am pleased with how well they paint up.
Even the gear comes out looking good.
Except for the highlights on these guys really only the command figures to go.
I realised something else, the figures I am painting with army painter take less than half the time as with my original style and to be honest don't look out of place beside them and the flesh looks better.
A little side project: This is a test figure for the Isum hussar regiment. I picked a bunch up on ebay and did a little work to him before applying the army painter. Finger crossed he will turn out fine!


Captain Richard's miniature Civil War said...

Nice work as always, Paul

John (Von Blucher) said...

I can't tell the difference between the 2.

You're going to have to make time to rework those redoubts, before the French come visiting.

Rosbif said...

Lovely work again, Paul!

AP is wonderful stuff, ain't it? :)

Phil said...

Very nice, Paul!
How many batallions before Borodino?
It makes me want to paint more napoleonic troops...

Stryker said...

39? Just a wee thing then aren't you?
You make it sound as if army painter does all the work for you - I think there's still a huge amount of talent going into those figures too!

kingsleypark said...

All hail Army Painter! It certainly has made a difference to my painting output.

The Russians look fab!

Gregory said...

Very nice.

The Angry Lurker said...

You did say thousands of Russians, good luck in the long run and lovely work on those by the way....

paulalba said...

Thanks for the kind comments guys, fingers crossed I can stay focus to at least get a few battalions done and a few cavalry regiments.

John, thats what I was thinking myself not much difference at all and the redoubts will have to come later :0(

Angry L, thousands is a little high? I have (AB) 3 Russian Cuirassier, 3 hussar, 1 dragoon, 1/2lancer regiments, 6 jager, 6 line, 4 grenadiers and maybe 2x6 batteries plus caissons, limbers and cossacks (plus loads of loose spares that I plan to paint to sell).

(OG) I have stacks of battalions, artillery and cossacks (and again spares)

I am pretty sure they reach 1000?
Again thanks for your comments.
Better get back to my Russians!!!

Gonsalvo said...

Looking very good, Paul; I am just finishing some Russian Grenadiers myself, and will be using the acrylic "dip" technique on them for the first time this week. I probably should have waited to put the metallics on and do the little highlighting that I did, but I can always go back afterwards and touch them up a bit. Iam curious to see how it works!


Ken said...

Hi Paul,

I second Strykers comment about the talent and not the AP. The AP does give a nice finishing touch but it's the brushwork with the acrylics that counts.

39? Just a young'un then!



Ray Rousell said...

Good luck with the Russians!!! I painted up stacks of them last year for my mate Postie, the cavalry is great to paint, some very colourful uniforms, but beware of the infantry, nearly all the units look exactly the same, they drove me round the twist!!!

MiniMike said...

Nice work Paul, look forward seeing hordes of thm here...

paulalba said...

Hi Peter good luck with your dip and I think doing the metalics before is a good idea. If it's anything like the Army Painter the metals will come out great!

Hi Ken, Still young for another year!! Thanks to you and Ian but I really have to be honest here, my input is very little! All I do is paint by numbers then paint the AP on. Once it drys I pick out face, belts trousers and buttons as well as a little highlighting on kiwer. Thats 23 of them complete and the last 9 I am waiting for the AP to dry and will finish them off tomorrow. I really can't believe how good a finish the AP gives after some careful detailing. Almost messed up the last batch with my Revell matt varnish as it is starting to get stringy and is my last tub.

Hi Ray, I will take your advice and try to split up the foot by doing some cavalry and artillery when the foot get mind numbing.

Hi Mike,
Glad you like them, Hopefully I will get a few battalions finished soon.

Best regards

VolleyFireWargames said...

1. after you turn forty its all down hill (i'm 52 - I wish i was 39 again)
2. great paint jobs are those 15mm figures. I need to do some french and austrians myself
3. sounds like you have a fun group

paulalba said...

Thanks Volley, the wife is 40 in April so I will passon said info!!! ;0)


1st502strike said...

Hi Paul,
Painting looks great. What army painted did you use, - soft, strong or dark? Thanks, Bill

paulalba said...

Hi Bill Thank!,
I used Dark tone Army Painter. For the darker Russian uniforms I think it works best. just finished basing both battalions and a command base, I'll post them soon and you can judge for yourself how they came out.