Friday, 3 January 2014

Craig's Brigade Belair

Hello, I hope everyone had very peaceful New Year celebrations and I wish you all the very best for 2014!
I have been working in and out through the festive season (and have been loaded with man flu to) so haven't really had a chance to do any more painting (however I'll be happy when the money comes in!). My buddy Craig in Australia sent over some more pics of his ecellent Napoleonic collection, this time more French.

I'll let Craig take it from here:

Small shot of the Legere in defensive position
Brigade Belair
The second infantry regiment of my French 12th Division from Bertrand's 1813 IV Corps to share is 8e Legere. This regiment, commanded by General de Brigade de Belair is represented by 4 battalions (I, II, III, and IV). The Regiment served in Dalmatia and Italy during the 1809 campaign, Russia in 1812, Germany throughout 1813 and won a battle honour for Wagram.

Legere altogether
I/8e Legere is again, a standard French light battalion of the period. These figures are all AB, and were painted in 2008-9. Again I used a standard layered block painting style over a black undercoat of enamel spray. Highlight is limited to faces. Painting gear is largely 0 through to 000 brushes, and Vallejo colours. The blue is a dark sea blue, which although dark, has a slight green tinge to it. This brings out the contrasting colours on the piping nicely.

 I/8e Ligne
I have done this unit as a 36 figure battalion, with six companies of six figures each. As per usual, I have created duplicate skirmish bases for the voltigeur companies. Under the rules we play (GdB) we are able to deploy half the strength of light battalions as skirmishers. For high quality units, this can be as high as 75%. That makes for a lot of duplicate skirmishers.
skirmish line
Although the orbat I have chosen is for 1813, I have chosen a uniform for the elite companies from the pre-Bardin period. Who could resist voltigeurs in colpack, and carabineers in bearskin? Not I, and certainly not for the first battalion, which also carries the regimental eagle. The plume combinations I took from Osprey, which indicates a red tipped yellow plume for the voltigeurs of 8e Legere. All other chasseur companies sported green pom-poms and white cords.
elites and voltigeur company
The next battalion is II/8e Legere. This is similar to the first battalion in structure and size. The key differences are that there is no standard carried, and therefore no porte-aigle; and that the elite companies wear plumed shakoes rather than more elaborate head-dress.
II/8e Legere
The next two battalions (III and IV) are quite similar, and probably a more realistic depiction of French light infantry during 1813. The figures are largely in greatcoats and covered shakoes. The battalions carry no colours. The only distinction I have allowed them is a porte-fanion in the carabineer company – carrying the green company marker with a grenade on it. I picked up the idea from the colour plate in the Osprey on Napoleon’s Light Infantry.
IV/8e Legere
Of course, these also have their own duplicate skirmishers.
skirmishers III/8e Legere
For the command element of this brigade I have created a small base which adheres to my standard two mounted/ two foot figures for brigade command bases. This stand depicts GdB Julienne de Belair, former Colonel of 8e Legere promoted in February 1813. At closer inspection I think the paint job looks a little rougher than I’d like. The accompanying figures are a carabineer officer, and a voltigeur (too tasty to say no!), and a mounted ADC.
General de Brigade Belair
The regiment/brigade takes up a bit of space when deployed, largely because of the skirmish capability.
Complete Brigade
The 1st battalion is posted in the large dwelling to the right, with half its strength deployed forward in the fields in the foreground. The second battalion is posted in the small hamlet to the left, with its voltigeur company deployed forward. To the centre rear is the 3rd battalion, in column, and to the left rear is the 4th battalion, with half its strength deployed as skirmishers in the small woods on the right flank. GdB Belair is in the centre, directing traffic, and earning his Legion d’Honneur.
This is a largish regiment, but I did not mind as the legere uniform is an interesting departure from the ligne battalions, and the elite companies have the potential for some interest. I think that my style has improved somewhat since I did these, but they still work well on the table. They served my mate JP (Ed: Does every Napoleonic group have a JP?) well when they last made it to the table He stormed a defended ridge with them, only to be ejected when finally overwhelmed by a horde of landwehr. C’est la guerre.


LittleArmies said...

Those are very nice figures that Craig has painted, Paul - it reminds me I'm rather short of Legere at the moment. I have numerous battalions of French Line but only one of Legere. I should have a go at the Xan figures I have.

Gonsalvo said...

Glad Craig did at least half the regiment in the standard Legere uniform, which always looks elegant.

Sgt Steiner said...

More super looking figures !!

Ian said...

These are really nice, love the look of them


Rodger said...

Well done Craig! Very very nice!

Ken said...

It's always good to 2nd battalions and equipped with fannions.

John (VonBlucher) said...

Good looking units, and nice touch on the the III and IV battalions.

Scotsgrey said...

Grand, the legere pictures are an inspiration.

Craig said...

Thanks Lads. These were pleasing to complete, as I had only being doing ligne up until this point. The elite companies from the first battalion were a pleasure to paint, and being at the later end of the AB range, quite a delight to paint.