Tuesday, 11 December 2007

Swedish Infantryman: completed

I finished this first Musketeer Miniatures Swedish infantryman in October.

As to colours I had a look at the displays in the Army Museum in Stockholm.

They have several reproduction uniforms, such as the one above, and a few real ones. The level of detail and quality of the reproductions indicates to me that these are very carefully researched indeed and are not just knocked up for show. Certainly the colour on the reproductions matches the original examples. The blue did not look nearly this bright in natural light: this is closer to pure Humbrol 25 in the picture which it certainly was not in reality.

This is an original coat from 1756, slightly later than the Great Northern War, but the uniform had hardly changed other than the coat turnbacks. The colour in this photograph is pretty spot on to what was there and this is what I based my colour scheme on. It is always hard to tell how much things have faded in 250 years but this sort of tone is justifiable and to me, anyway, looks right. Note how pale the yellow coat is in the background.

For the coat I had originally imagined quite a dark, navy blue, like the current Swedish Guards uniforms. Comments on the Musketeer Miniatures Forum indicated that the coats were "lighter than had been thought". Certainly the ones in the museum were what I would call a mid-blue. I had to mix a colour specially: one third Humbrol 109 WW1 Blue and two thirds 25 Blue.

For the yellow facings I wanted to avoid bright yellow; these were pre-chemical dye times. One of the reasons I prefer enamels over acrylics is that they offer a more muted palate. I used Humbrol 81 Pale yellow rather than the brighter 24 Trainer yellow. I think that this gives a good approximation of what I saw in the museum

All in all I really enjoyed painting this figure, particularly after a rather fallow period, and I have now based and undercoated the other seven figures I bought at Colours. I have started work on a Russian infantryman. I bought these figures just as a painting exercise but I am now contemplating three units of infantry, a unit of cavalry and a cannon for some skirmishes. There are, apparently, a couple of very good books on uniforms which I will have to get

So far, Musketeer have enough Swedes (musketmen, grenadiers, pikemen and command) so that you can build an infantry unit. Flags from Little Big men studios are also under way. They only have two packs of Russians, both musketeers. Somewhere on the forum they say that the Russians aren't selling so well, but if you can't build a unit it's not surprising. They are promising more Russians and cavalry in the New Year. After that they are promising Danes (hooray) and Saxons. It is quite good to be getting into a range as they are released as hopefully my painting can keep up with their releases! The danger is, of course, that they never finish the range

My next challenge will be to find a set of rules. There are some specific GNW rule sets out there and another to come from the League of Augsburg club but they all have element basing which I don't like. I wonder if anyone has any patches for Warhammer ECW?

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