Aut Cesar, Aut Nihil, Wargaming the Borgias.

Aut Cesar, Aut Nihil, Wargaming the Borgias.

Friday, 20 December 2013

The First of my French.

I've found while wargaming this past so many decades that there are a lot of generous sorts who wargame. Whether its information or advice, but sometimes its a bit more. A very kind wargamer called Jason Williams sent me a pile of Corvus pikemen after I had been in contact in order to offer to buy them from him.
 Corvus were a small 28mm company from the 1980's that had some decent figures, perhaps a bit static, but still very nice. Anyway Jason very kindly refused payment and sent me a unit to paint.
 I salted a couple of Perry figures amongst the unit to give it a bit of interest, but I think they painted up really well. I have painted them as Gascon pikemen. Pete of Pete's flags fame, did me some extra large banners as I wanted to see how they would look. Again I think they worked out pretty well.
 I put the Corvus figures on one base, to save them routing in smaller groups, as pike I dont think the Gascons they were particularly good. Anyway thank you again Jason, I hope I can return the favour.
To complement the pike I painted up some crossbowmen as a sub unit. These are mainly Venexia figures.
The French always toted a lot of artillery about with them, so I have started with a couple of smaller pieces.

 I particularly liked the Grenadier model.
 And finally another sub commander, this time a couple of Redoubt figures, not my favourite range, but still not bad.I can only apologise about the quality of the photographs, I am not sure what has happened to my camera. Anyway, Happy Christmas.

Monday, 9 December 2013

A start on the French Army, via some odds and sods.

Before I start, apologies for the quality of the photographs. I don't understand what has happened to my camera, it doesn't seem to want to use the flash.

After their outing at Smoggycon, it was pretty obvious to me that I had overdone the numbers of Cesare's army. They obviously needed an opponent. I have opted to paint up some French, although technically they didnt fight against Cesare, they did fight everone else.
 Whilst starting the army, I strayed onto painting a Hinchliffe wagon. The colour scheme is a bit garish, but I got a bit carried away with the yellow. Still a nice model, and well worth buying, and still at a fairly modest price.
I then wandered into starting some new casuality markers for Pike and Shotte. I managed to pick up a few bases really cheap so I have no excuse in not doing any.

 At Smoggycon, I realised that I needed more generals to lead the various units, so I used up some of my Perry WOR leaders and personalities. I know Margaret of Anjou is stretching things a bit, but she is a lovely figure.

Which led me onto some mercenary Italian gendarmes for the French. When Peter Gilder created these figures under the guise of Connisseur Figures,  way back in the 1980's these were the cutting edge of wargames figures.I think they still hold their own with a lot of ranges. Not cheap, but full of life.
They are helped by banners from Pete's Flags. Colour, colour and more colour, not for the faint hearted.

 I was kindly given some Corvus pikemen by a wargamer called Jason. Again I would like to say thank you for the kind gesture. I am halfway through painting up a French pike block.  Again an old range, but still a great range, but hard to get hold of.

Sunday, 17 November 2013

Another unit ready for Smoggycon.

My painting is a bit like buses, they tend to all come at once.
 Anyway John felt that I needed to have some more light cavalry ready for Saturday, so I dashed off these chaps.
 Luckily the Pike and Shotte rules operate in sixes, so painting these boys wasnt a chore.
 I used to have a fair few Citidal figures in my previous renaissance armies, especially my Burgundian one. Who did I sell them to? They are still a nice figure to use, but I dont like the Foundry pricing for them, a tad on the expensive side for figures that are at least 25 years old.
On that note, Hinchliffe have always produced a wonderful range of wagons, especially the renaissance range. This wine wagon, was one of my favaourites, so painting up another one was a real pleasure.
 Also a very reasonable price to currently buy.

 Lastly I had a couple of spare figures, so never being one to waste a nice figure, I have painted him as a sub general. I havent a clue who the manufacturer was but still a nice casting.

 So there we have it, hopefully it will make a colourful display on Saturday, dependent on the weather of course. Hope to see you there.

Saturday, 16 November 2013

Gearing up for Smoggycon.

Well next Saturday is Smoggycon in Middlesbrough. John and I are putting a renaissance game on, pending the weather, which according to the Daily Express is expected to be the next ice age.
 Anyway, putting a game on at a show is a great way to focus the mind and paint some more units.
 I have always loved the Hinchliffe gendarme figure, so it was inevitable that I should have a unit.
Well actually that isn't strictly true, because I took delivery of a further unpainted unit today.
 Hopefully, Pete, from Pete's Flags will forgive me from using some Szorza banners to add some colour to them. The Hinchliffe rangs is one of the best value ranges going at £1.65p for a cavalryman, whats not to like about them.
 Anyway I hope to see some new faces at Smoggycon, please come over and introduce yourselves.

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Cesare's Swiss Contingent.

 Well I've managed to complete three of my Swiss pike blocks. My intention as stated before was to put all the figures on one base, for ease of movement and to cheat a little and not have to paint as many figures whilst still giving the impression of a large mass.
 The first two photographs are of my Perry troops, a mixture of plastics and metal.

 The next few are of my Connoisseur figures with  the odd Perry thrown in for good luck. They were a delight to paint, and I know are not everyone's cup of tea, but beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

 The blocks together with some of my new skirmish troops. There will be three sub units for the Swiss.
 The sub unit, with a couple of injures chaps to add interest.
 For some reason I have a bit of a slant towards orange at the moment! It is the colours of my local football team, so perhaps subconsciously I am a secret Northern League fan.
 Finally the blocks en masse. Cesare's army will hopefully receive its first outing at Smoggycon later this month [weather permitting]

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Dave Jarvis, master painter.

I've known Dave Jarvis for an awful lot of years. I can remember when he used to sit around John and my display table in Durham, picking up the figures and picking John's brain for tips about painting.
 Little did we know he would turn into a professional painter, and not just any painter.
 If you are lucky enough to see or own a copy of John Ray's new book, A MILITARY GENTLEMAN, then you will see a great number of Dave's painted figures.
 Dave has his own style, and I think that's what I like the best.
 Normally I wouldn't  dream of asking Dave to paint any of my figures because I just couldnt afford it.
 Dave needs to live, and to be fair so do I.
  Dave however very kindly agreed to paint me a few Eureka gendarmes at a very reasonable price. I think he basically felt sorry for me, and I caught him after he had been for a massage. At least that's what he called it.
Anyway without further ado, DAVE JARVIS, painter to the wargames elite, does Eureka Gendarmes.....
 The annoying thing is Dave still uses a lot of enamel paints but somehow does a lovely job of making them look so bright. The unit will represent Cesare's Mounted Guard, hence the lance pennons with his motto Aut Cesar Aut Nihil.

 I think the only consolation is that Dave is such a crap wargames general. But hey you cant be good at everything.


Honour Guard of Cesare Borgia.

Honour Guard of Cesare Borgia.