Sunday 20 June 2021


 Yesterday was the first The Woods in the Woods event held in beautiful Gloucestershire woodland and organised by The Woods creators Geoff and Sol. I took a few pictures, which don't do the event credit at all, but hopefully capture something of the ambience. Cheery gamers, great terrain in an atmospheric setting.

Our hosts Sol and Geoff on the left.

Three stunning tables to play across, and a very welcome fire as it was surprisingly cool for midsummer.

I could only stay part of the day unfortunately, but enough to get a couple of games in against Harry, playing a school of Bucca ( fishmen) against my Leprechauns. I'm hopeless with rules, so in true Leprechaun style I persuaded Harry to show me how to win at his own expense. Geoff was busy between all tables helping with rules queries. Hopefully by next year, I'll have the rules off pat, and give Harry the chance to win.

To add to the Froudian atmosphere, a cheeky Stinkhorn fungus was spotted lurking just outside the glade. 
A fine example of
Phallus impudicus.

Happy Solstice.


Thursday 17 June 2021


Away from grime and back to shine with my favourite race from The Lord of the Rings, the Riders of 

Although I have reservations about the Peter Jackson films, the Riders were spot on I thought and I have a supply of the GW figures to do in the future. 

For this project however I had to keep to figures available in 1984. The recommended Essex figure is out of production, and I had 20 or so Heritage Riders already ( based loosely on the Bakshi cartoon film). To these I added a pile of Hinchliffe Goths and Sarmatians, added a few Milliput plumes and some green stuff shields I press moulded off a Heritage figure.

I was a bit worried about painting so many horses, but as it turned out they were quite fun to do at the end of the day when I couldn't concentrate on detail. 

I haven't decided which figure to use as Eomer yet, so this Heritage one will stand in for the moment . Theoden is also a Heritage figure and I'm not sure if I like it much. The gold barding is based on the Bakshi cartoon film but for some reason the designer gave the figure an axe instead of his trusty sword Herugrim. I painted Theoden's shield gold, as somewhere in LOTR it states his shield shines like the sun.

( very cleverly designed Herugrim from the film based on a Late Roman spatha for the older king. Eomer and Eowyn's swords were much more Saxon looking ).

Eowyn and Merry are hidden in the ranks and as Eowyn is one of the few people who can kill the Witch King it would seem silly to single her out with a different mounted model. On foot however I had to use this classic Ral Partha Shield Maiden, who armour proclaims her sex in true old school style. I did paint her obviously bare legs as trousers however. Merry is a lovely Ral Partha halfling... some of the best ever made.

Sorry about the appalling photo! I'm very aware of the limitations of my photography, all done with a wonky phone. I really do find it hard to find the time to set up the lovely diorama shots I see on other blogs, so apologies!

I'm now looking at a block of 60 orcs and some Uruk-Hai......

Tuesday 15 June 2021


 I managed to bang out a test figure in a Grubdark style... I am finding I can only paint an hour at a time before my eyes start to ache.

He was great fun to paint as I had no  aim or expectations. He is clearly heavily influenced by GARDENS OF HECATE  , a blog I very much admire. It's Grimdark but without being completely gross.

The shield heraldry is based in the Arms of Totnes, where Brutus and his companions allegedly landed in Albion.

Monday 14 June 2021


 Recently inspired by Instagram posts on the Grimdark miniature movements Turnip28 and Weald28, I thought I'd have a go at doing some very basic assembly and kit bashing of plastic figures... something I've always shied away from doing.  

As it turned out kit bashing is very different to assembling straight models, because it really doesn't matter if there's a gap or surfeit if glue... Especially if you are going to paint in the manner of the 2 groups above where everything is covered in mud and moss anyway!

I've long wanted to do a small project following British Mythology mixing it with my own ideas, so who better to start with than Brutus of Troy, first king of Britain. Brutus is a mysterious figure invented by medieval historians ( notably Geoffrey of Monmouth) to tie in known British history of the time with the mythology of both the classics and the Bible. Exiled from Troy for accidentally killing his father, after various adventures he ends up on the shores of giant infested Albion, landing at Totnes in Devon. I'll elaborate further when (if) I get the figures painted, but here's the work so far.

I enjoyed sticking the Perry Wars of the Roses  figures together, they are very well designed. From left to right...  standard man at arms but with a hoplite shield, man at arms with a Victrix muscled cuirass and plume added , Rogue miniatures Mordred who I might use for Brutus although the armour is so iconic could it only be Mordred from Excalibur? Thoughts in the comments please if you can. Finally if I use the Mordred figure I'll leave him as he is and have a shield bearer to do his defending for him. Let me know what you think. 

Saturday 12 June 2021


 Back to the Minas Tirith'84 project with some more goodies, The Rangers of the North or Dunedain. Again I've used Hinchliffe, Foresters from the fantasy range to be back in production soon. These are old castings with a high lead content which made their bows very bendy and difficult to straighten out.. part of the charm of old figures I guess.

I followed the colour scheme from memory but I think it's right. The only inaccuracy I can see is the silver brooch should be on the other shoulder. They certainly have splendid comb overs, similar to their sculptor Peter Gilder.

Other news . I've finished painting the riders of Rohan, which just need varnishing and the bases painting so hopefully I can show you those soon.

The existing Hinchliffe moulds have been spun and the castings examined, so in a week or so I'll be listing the first figures for sale.

I've been tinkering with some Grimdark British Mythology figures... actually assembling 28mm kits. Something I swore I'd never do, but I've quite enjoyed it. This project will be called Perfidious Albion, and may go in a very different way to my normal shiny figures. More soon..

Sunday 6 June 2021


 A test game of The Woods yesterday, spurred me on to rise with the lark this morning and finish my Leprechaun clan... The Bommy Knockers. Emerging from the bogs and raths of Talamhlar to work their mischief.

Left to right, Oakbound, Pendragon, Reaper, Citadel.

Citadel conversion by Geoff Solomon-Sims, Citadel, Citadel with 54mm tricorn.

Plastic DnD dire owl.

The entire clan.

I was dabbling with painting effects here using a base coat of khaki and highlights of bone and white, then applying contrast paints over the top with a bit of extra shading from Citadel Shades. I think I achieved the effect I wanted, trying to make them look something like Brian Froud's illustrations in Faeries, but a bit more sinister. 

The whole process was a bit time consuming, but I really do like Contrast paints... Such a pleasure to apply. I'll be using them in the future on more fantasy figures.