Monday 24 October 2011

Grand Designs and Lofty Ambitions

42mm 1879 types - 'Farsands of em!'

Since the recent move into my new den I have taken to spending a lot of time thinking about my enjoyment of our hobby and the ways in which I can fully exploit the potential of my dedicated space. This has been an interesting and surprising experience. It has also been curiously liberating because I have realised that many of those projects I have had in mind over the years that have been long suppressed by reasons of space can now be considered  in a practical way.

42mm Irregular Miniatures again - this time in 1870

I have always been fascinated with the idea of using larger sized figures for a war game - by which I mean 42 or 54mm. I have dabbled with these sizes in the past but for a variety of reasons was never able to make the idea a practical reality and so the acquired material was eventually disposed of in my usual ruthless fashion. The concept never left me though - it was the manner of execution that appeared to be an insurmountable problem.

Large armies would be expensive and time-consuming to acquire together with the associated problems concerning storage and of painting the said collection. My slow speed of painting would be a factor here as as well and given the additional fact that I would probably have to plough this particular furrow as a solo project meant that it was never really going to be a realistic proposition.

To a large extent many of these negatives are now no longer applicable. I have the space - not on a ballroom scale certainly but sufficient for purpose - to not only store such a collection but to be able to work on it and not have to keep packing everything away at the end of a painting/modelling/gaming session. Being able to leave things in situ is a bonus I had not considered but boy is a handy thing to have!

As far as figures are concerned this is also no longer the difficulty I had previously struggled with as the range of 42mm figures available is pretty good -  Irregular miniatures for one produce a large range of figures in this scale - and these have the added advantage of being fairly simply styled, rather like the old toy soldier look.

In 54mm of course the range of figures available is huge and so pretty much most historical periods could happily be covered by both scales if required. Looking at the range of figures now available in this scale in soft plastic, one can see all manner of possibilities for something a little bit different.

For reasons which will become obvious I am currently experimenting with painting some 54mm soft plastic figures in what can best be described as a simple, old toy soldier style of paint job. As a very slow and reluctant painter of figures I am hoping that by adopting this technique (down to the gloss varnish for the finish) I shall be able to look to tackle some modestly sized forces in a larger scale with the realistic chance of finishing them. It all depends on how the trial paint job works out.

More to follow.


Rodger said...

Sounds really cool David. Looking forward to seeing the results.

Ant Master said...

The army painter method may work for this style given the eventual gloss finish.

Mosstrooper said...

Warning - Irregular 42mm are VERY addictive !!!.

David Crook said...

Hi Rodger,

Still very much in the planning stages and I have to be absolutely sure on the paint job (hence the experimentation) but if it all comes together then it will be a whole lot of fun!

All the best,


David Crook said...

Hi Zombie Master,

I had considered using AP but will not now be doing so. These will be flat coloured, gloss varnished and very old school!

All the best,


David Crook said...

Hi Mosstrooper,

Irregular 42mms are lovely but I shall be be foregoing them in favour of 54mm plastics assuming the paint job works out as planned.

All the best,