Airfix OOHO British Paratroops – Chubsters?

More of my childhood Airfix Veterans painted and based for the first time.

These OOHO Paratroopers’ figures Set S23 were first produced in 1965, sculpted by John Niblett who produced many of the slender first version Airfix figures.

Some of these “bunch of chubsters“, as Gary Cumston light-heartedly called these figures on this Facebook group (below), have fought bravely in my boyhood battles since the mid 1970s, but oddly never got painted. Maybe their useful khaki green plastic handily required no painting?

They were indeed tall “chubsters”, compared to the slender Version 1 Airfix infantry figures that preceded them.

The third figure was a random one from Ken or Tony that appears to have been slightly melted or modified (to standing firing?) I think I may paint and finish this as an umbrella to represent an officer figure like Major Digby Tatham-Warter the famously eccentric Parachute officer at Arnhem who carried one. Experimental Scrim on his helmet.

Parachute regiments were usually made up of men from many regiments and sources. The same is true of my Airfix Figures. These are mostly the green colour 1970s ones but some brown 1990s Playset Coastal Fort / Gun Emplacment ones crept in. (Why make them in brown?)

Now my childhood elite veterans have been joined by a few 1960s/70s figures from Tony Adams and my former work colleague and friend Ken from his 1960s/70s tin of Airfix. Their figures are suitably coded with initials under the base.

To consider this chubster question, what better than to look closely at the figures, whilst painting up and basing some of these veterans?

I checked that I had all the figures and equipment from the Airfix British Paratroopers section of Plastic Soldier Review (which is largely unimpressed by this set) http://www.plasticsoldierreview.com/Review.aspx?id=418

Yes I know it’s a Bazooka rather than a PIAT. Support weapons mounted singly except mortar team vignette. Scrim helmet experiments (see later in post).

*** Digital camera or iPad photos do tend to show up forgotten or unpainted chin straps, mouldlines and flash etc but I have to remind myself that on the games table, you are seeing them at a distance. These are old figures / moulds too. ***

A few figures and fine fiddly bits were missing from my childhood originals including the two part mortar and base, the officer checking his watch with his “whatever” hand signal and the two deflated parachutes. I searched around and added these from my unused brown plastic 1990s play set figures, many of which were still on the sprue.

There are some surprising details to paint on these rather generic allied Paratroops like the ‘monkey’s tail’ tailpiece or crutch strap, that ran from back to front to button up the smock tight whilst parachuting.

The famous drop canister and associated vignette figure.

Illustrations – Airfix boxes 1970s OOHO called generic ‘Paratroopers’ – with a US Airborne look on the left? – in this still used artwork by Brian Knight. Source image: Plastic Soldier Review.

The box art illustration by Airfix artist William Champion from the second version British Paratroops 1:32 boxes (shown in Denison smocks below) – still in use 2021.

Where can I get some?

WW2 Airfix OOHO or 1:72 figures seem to go in and out of production, as the British Paratroopers currently are (summer 2021). Recent releases of the Paras up to Red Box packaging style (2012) onwards are still around online for much the same price as the OOHO figure selection currently on Airfix.com

Airfix 1:32 British Paratroops are being re-released late summer 2021.

As a young gamer borrowing this book from the branch library service I felt included in the adult world of gaming because Donald Featherstone used Airfix figures: Appendix 3 Wargaming Airborne Operations – basic Airfix paint style shown.

Painting my Paras at last

I had intended at first to do my usual childhood ‘Airfix basics’ simple painting of black boots, flesh faces and weapon colours.

Usually I use Khaki Afrikabraun for faces as it is not quite so pink and bright pale as flesh paints usually are.

Once I had painted in packs, gaiters and webbing in Khaki (Afrikabraun Matt in Revell Acrylic Aquacolor), it became necessary to use Flesh for the faces toned down with a hint of khaki or green. Any other webbing colour from the paints that I had available and had tried was too grey. I hadn’t considered using any washes at this point.

Afrikabraun – gaiters, webbing pouches and haversack

Tar Black – for boots and weapons

Leather Brown – for hair and wooden parts of weapons

Silver and black mixed for gun metal and grenades

Dark Green – for helmets

Shade and Wash?

Having done the old Airfix figure basic colours, I thought I would try some Citadel shade wash to pick out the detail and shadows of pouches, clothes and faces. I used a Christmas gift from the family last Christmas of Citadel Shade Athonian Camoshade (dark green) and Agrax Earthshade (brown). Nuln Oil (black) was generally too dark.

Shades of Denison?

Flocking and Basing (F and B)

MDF 1p Penny bases from Warbases were used for individual figures, Tuppeny 2p MDF for lying down figures and support weapons.

Apart from lying figures, figures were glued with UHU onto these 1p bases before painting started. It makes them generally easier to paint.

The flock used was a mixture of several Woodland Scenics flock types, some Jacklex packing sawdust, fine beach sand and beach micro-gravel (gathered from beach trips).

PVA Glue mixed with brown and green craft acrylic was placed by cocktail stick onto the Airfix figure base and MDF penny base before burying them in flock in a small tray.

A little later, the figure bases were buried in a tub of the fine beach sand and micro-gravel.

Trusty old Preben Kannik 1968 Military Uniforms of the World in Colour (Blandford)

Uniform Research – Denison Smocks

Some online sources, painted sample figures in ads and book illustrations show quite garish bright washes of brown cream and green for camouflaged Denison smocks.

Initially I did not even intend to paint the green sections of these already khaki green plastic figures, unless they required this like Tony Adams’ grey painted figures or the 1990s Brown issue Airfix OOHO Paratroops.

Once I had done the green or brown wash, I thought this might suffice.

However, having done the Citadel wash which seems at first to add a shine on matt colours, I went back and spent some time adding brush shade mixes onto the Airfix plastic green base colour of Olive (dark) Green and Dark Earth (brown) Revell Acrylics.

Whilst I did this, I listened for the first time to the DVD Special Features film makers’ commentary by “special effects, designers, cinematographers and film production staff” on my trusty A Bridge Too Far DVD.

After I had done this and it had dried, I couldn’t easily tell what I had done, which is hopefully the opposite of garish.

Early Denison smocks were supposed to slowly fade and the colours wash out.

These familiar Airfix Para figures seem to hold up well enough for me for gaming, especially considering that these figures that are almost 60 years old. Their modern equivalents are probably these 28mm Warlord Games Paras or any other plastic 1:72 / 1:76 British Paras you can find.

How do they paint Denison camouflage jacket ‘brush strokes’ this tiny? 28mm figures.
Three Esci hard plastic Red Devil’s that I painted in Denison camouflage c. 1982, next to a recently painted Airfix paratroop signaller, probably trying to get those radios to work.

A Bridge Too Far 1977 quote: Anthony Hopkins as John Frost: “D’you know something’s just occurred to me. We’re wearing the wrong sort of camouflage … all very well for the countryside but I doubt if it’s going to fool anyone in the town …”

Screen shot from YouTube clips of A Bridge Too Far. Chicken in a backpack mascot optional.

To Scrim or Not Too Scrim?

I watched an interesting YouTube video on helmet scrim using finely cut up bandages https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=vdj1a8Irgu4&feature=youtu.be

I tried this out but found my old time-expired bandages, once cut up were more like cotton fluff plastic than cloth, so I only did one trial figure in this style. I then trimmed a few millimetres of edging from a green gaming cloth, which had more of a weave to it and the benefit of green shade colours. I tried this finely chopped material out on a damaged figure and a few lying figures.

Green cloth scrim on No. 1, bandage scrim on No.2 and none on No. 3

To Scrim or Not to Scrim and how?

Scrim Plus point: It does hide the unfortunate mould rim line or dent across across the top of the helmet.

Scrim Minus point: Many of the archive pictures that I looked at did not show British Paratroops with helmet scrim net or a leafy head scrim.

I want these figures to be as versatile for (ImagiNations) gaming in different theatres as possible, although generally on grass flocked bases.

What do you think?

*

Casualties without a base are now mounted as standing figures to make more grenade throwers or weapons crew.

Essential Reading Matter

Wargaming Airborne Operations by Donald Featherstone (1977) – same period as A Bridge Too Far film. The appendix sections show Airfix publicity shot pictures of the new German Paratroops OOHO and German Mountain Troops, along with OOHO British Paratroopers with minimal painting style.

In the game photographs, it shows that generally Featherstone barely painted his British Paras, or the newly released 1974-76 issues of Australian, US Paratroop, German Paratroop or Mountain Troop Airfix figures.

By chance, timely figures or the stimulus for producing this book?

Representative sample page of Wargaming Airborne Operations showing Featherstone’s simple figure painting style and functional games table. I found this achievable approach inspiring as a young gamer. Atlantic and Airfix figures, handmade, charred and melted urban terrain pieces …

Interestingly he also hadn’t added or updated to the Version 2 British Infantry or German Infantry, still using his Version 1 Infantry Combat Group and German Infantry from his WW2 game in War Games (1962) fifteen years earlier. Along with Matchbox US and German Infanty, he had surprisingly used Atlantic German and US Infantry in his games though instead.

A reprint by John Curry in the History of Wargaming project also includes Bob Cordery’s Tarred and Feathered grid update of Lionel Tarr and Donald Featherstone’s WW2 rules in War Games (1962).

Osprey Combat: British Paratrooper versus German Fallschirmjager (Mediterranean 1942-43)

A Bridge Too Far by Cornelius Ryan (extract) from True Stories of World War Two (Reader’s Digest). This thick hardback book of extracts was a welcome teenage Christmas or Birthday present from my parents.

Essential Viewing Matter

I chose A Bridge Too Far as my Desert Island one film challenge Duchy of Tradgardland blog post that has most introduced my gaming:

“Hard to choose from the raft of westerns and 50s/60s war films and Battle Victor comics etc, the Zulu, Waterloo films mentioned. Probably ‘A Bridge Too Far‘ from its plan of ops beginning, suggested flaws before the gliders launch, its series of plucky little character vignettes, unlucky blunders, plucky heroism, independent individual skirmish actions and IGO YUGO-ness (now the Allied side, now the German side). Obviously the same could be said of The Longest Day and Battle of the Bulge movies, all a bit mashed together in my head. This happened roughly around the same time as finding Donald Featherstone’s Airborne Wargaming book from the library.”

This film has its detractors https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Bridge_Too_Far_(film) but this broadly accurate film by producer Joseph Levine, scriptwriter William Goldman and director Richard Attenborough is a suitable memorial to many brave young men who died in this tragedy of human flaws in the planning and general bad luck.

Like Attenborough’s earlier film version of Oh What a Lovely War! and many late 1960s and 1970s war films, it is arguably / almost an anti-war film. (‘Discuss’. Film Studies 101).

These Para figures will one day grace the gaming table again as they did in my childhood and teenage games but probably not in a historical reenactment game.

Maybe in ImagiNations games as the First Angrian Parachute Brigade?

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, 18 July 2021

Another inspiring photograph from Richard Tennant in Featherstone’s Solo Wargaming

60 inspiring illustrations but only one of them in colour …

Last year I wrote about the signed copy of Donald Featherstone’s Complete Wargaming that I had picked up secondhand, signed or dedicated to Richard Tennant.

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2020/12/22/richard-tennant-and-donald-featherstones-incomplete-wargaming/

Reading through Solo Wargaming, my second favourite Featherstone title, (War Games 1962 first, Airborne Wargaming third, before you ask), I spotted another of Richard Tennant’s beautiful wargames terrain pieces.

Richard (Dick) Tennant sadly passed away in March 2021, aged 77.

There is an obituary piece for him here:

https://miniatureminions.blogspot.com/2021/03/a-tribute-to-passing-of-friend-dick.html

Many of these terrain pieces were made for Richard, something I discovered on Richard’s summary of the Miniature Minions website of David Crenshaw.

David now owns many of these Tennant Napoleonic collection figures. You can glimpse the building again in one of Tennant’s own photographs:

Richard Tennant wrote his own mini biography featured on David Crenshaw’s blog:

https://miniatureminions.blogspot.com/2019/05/the-richard-tennant-collection.html

It looks like one of these Spanish farms by Holmes of Deltorama or Peter Gilder has been photographed for Donald Featherstone’s lovely book, one of only two colour pictures including the cover picture of Airfix Arabs.

Richard Tennant was an early opponent of Donald Featherstone in Southampton in the 1960s and a lifelong friend of his. They both shared an interest in the Napoleonic and Peninsular Wars.

As well as Richard Tennant’s collections being together in the USA in good hands, it is good to know that many of Featherstone’s figures are together in the collection of Daniel Borris in the USA.

Solo Wargaming has been republished in affordable softback by John Curry in the History of Wargaming Project – http://www.wargaming.co/recreation/details/dfsolo.htm

**************************

I also spotted Dick Tennant’s name again in Donald Featherstone’s Wargamers Newsletter of October 1969 (I have fairly randomly the Jan-Dec 1969 issues)

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, July 2021

Tankette Tuesday #Two

My battered sole survivor from the Char B / Renault FT17 Matchbox 1:76 set. The Char B has long gone, although it still have the street setting and the poilu figures somewhere.

Is it a tankette? Is it a light tank?

More about the FT17 https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Renault_FT

This late 1970s Matchbox kit was recently rereleased by Revell and can be found in some online model shops.

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN 13 July 2021

Popsicle Landing Craft?

What other things popsicle moulds could be used for – amphibious invasions!

More pictures at / crossposted from my Pound Store Plastic Warriors sister blog, https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2021/07/11/popsicle-landing-craft/

What proper pound store playsets and playmates were made for …

Mark Man of TIN 11 July 2021

Mystery OOHO American Infantry

These strange half dozen US Infantry came into my collection in the early to mid 1980s via my late Dad. I think they came from someone at his workplace.

I appreciated their smart paintwork. They were used in some of my teenage gaming scenarios but I was aware of their delicacy.

They are hard plastic and possibly kit figures. They had small square plasticard bases and one or two were missing either feet, bases or weapon tips.

I can’t find who made them. I have skimmed through the US Infantry section of Plastic Soldier Review.

***** One suggestion by Neil Patterson in the comments below, which seems right on web searching, is that these are Roco Minitanks figures. Thanks. *****

Mixed in with this mystery US Infantry, another mystery figure:

This strange green plastic radioman (below) reminds me of Giant (Hong Kong copies?) spacemen or divers, or the random 1980s sets of Atlantic ‘modern’ infantry figures.

My original 1980s paintwork, obviously in need of extra radiomen for a game …

Both these oddities, recently rebased on Warbases MDF penny bases, only survived I think in my 1980s Blue Box of bits and bobs of gaming stuff and stray figures.

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2020/04/13/unboxing-the-blue-box-of-1980s-gaming-figures-time-capsule-parts-1-to-3/

Or my metal case

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2021/05/07/two-by-two-into-the-metal-airfix-ark-the-case-of-the-metal-box/

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN blog, 10 July 2021

WIP King’s Guard paint conversion of Vintage Airfix AWI British Grenadiers

The original few King’s Guard figures are based on unusual paint conversions of Airfix AWI British Grenadiers.

These were found as a handful of figures in a small hoard of random old Airfix figures from a local collectibles shop plastic bag over ten years ago.

This is how they arrived …

As they were when I emptied the random joblot bag … before paint retouching and rebasing. The officer is a conversion from an ACW officer.

The dozen or so original King’s Guard figures (both blue facings and a few green facings) needed bulking up in numbers to be any kind of effective unit on the gaming tabletop for a skirmish game.

Bottom left, a useful handful of British Grenadiers from Alan. The French Artillery are now painted up https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2021/06/13/wades-toy-soldier-artillery-from-vintage-airfix-ooho-french-artillery-imaginations/

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2021/06/04/imaginations-vintage-airfix-figures-1-black-and-gold-washingtons-army-tricorne-troops/

Fortunately, some Airfix ‘turncoats and mercenaries’ arrived from Alan at the Duchy of Tradgardland blog as Army surplus to current Tradgardland projects.

These Grenadier figures from Alan have been painted up to join or blend in with the battered original paint scheme.

Underneath on the Warbases penny MDF bases, I have inscribed with Steadtler fine liner CD/DVD permanent marker pens their origin and individual number.

DofT means Duchy of Tradgardland origin, along with other ‘bag originals’ marked as DH for another origin or KG (for King’s Guard).

Placeholder simple red flag for the King’s Guard, as red as those striking britches!

Reversed colour facings for the drummer.

The original handwritten biro markings beneath their original bases.

Inscribing ID numbers and origin initials on the bases means that I can

  • keep track of how many Airfix figures I have,
  • which are my original childhood ones
  • who or where the kind gifting of figures came from.

It also fits in well with Featherstone’s personalised wargaming chapter of his Solo Wargaming.

I have kept the paintwork on any ‘new’ figures or any refreshed paint style very simple to match the original figures. No washes, no outlining straps and cross belts, and also no varnish (yet).

These early 1971 Airfix AWI figures have a surprising amount of detail to choose to paint or not to paint such as pigtails, powder horns, straps, turn backs, facings and buttons. Plastic Soldier Review are not so impressed by these vintage 1971 figures: http://www.plasticsoldierreview.com/Review.aspx?id=43

I wonder if one day the original painter of these “King’s Guard” figures will spot these figures online and recognise their handwriting and their handiwork?

Future vintage Airfix plans

There are several more colourful but undermanned ImagiNations units from the original plastic bag hoard who need reinforcements –

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2021/05/20/imaginations-obes-and-vintage-airfix-scrapings-from-someone-elses-toy-box/

Recently Ian M. Dury my fellow Peter Laing collector posted the remains of a surplus box each of Airfix British Grenadiers and Washington’s Army to add to the colourful Rainbow ImagiNations figures. Thanks Ian. Ironically they will probably delay some Peter Laing figures on their journey across the painting table.

Welcome AWI Airfix surplus to join my ImagiNations recruits, a gift from Ian Dury …

Naturally these are now marked up on the bases as ID, ready for future painting, along with a handful from Tony Adams (TA) and about half a box from former colleague Ken (KA) of Washington’s Army figures.

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2017/09/08/vintage-airfix-tin-hoard/

Washington’s Army from the early 1970s still on the sprue from my former colleague Ken. Thanks Ken.

I wonder – If Airfix rereleased them, would I buy many more? Do I have enough already for my small skirmish forces?

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN 5 July 2021

Music of The Allies From the Peninsula to Waterloo Bate Collection CD

Some of my original 1980s 15mm Peter Laing Napoleonic figures drum in the arrival of this interesting CD.

“An evocative programme of army marches and songs from the period 1808-1815”

I cannot remember how I first came across this 2016 CD of recordings of Napoleonic music played by the Bate Military Ensemble on original period instruments from the Bate Collection at the University of Oxford.

I thought it might make an interesting quirky present for a relative with an interest in Napoleonic history. Tracks unheard, I bought this a few weeks ago for the very reasonable price of £10.50 plus postage from the University of Oxford online shop:

https://www.oxforduniversitystores.co.uk/product-catalogue/music-faculty-bate-collection/cds/music-of-the-allies

This is the back of CD blurb and liner notes track listing:

The CD has an attractive cover image, “Winter Warmer, Barba del Puerco”, by Osprey artist Christa Hook.

As I bought this tracks unheard, before I send this CD off as a present, I had second thoughts and opened the shrinkwrap to listen to a few tracks to check this CD out in case it was not suitable.

I was impressed enough by what I heard. There is a short spoken introduction to each track or bugle call by Major Richard Powell. There are also extensive liner notes by Colin Dean with fascinating details of the songs and instruments.

As well as French and British marches and songs, the Allies part of the title covers other marches and songs from nationalities who fought against Napoleon including the Dutch and Prussians. It finishes with the well-known tune “Ich hatt’ einen kameraden”.

Major Richard Powell explains the different trumpet, bugle or fife calls used by cavalry or infantry. The fife or whistle infantry and rifleman calls sound like a form of Morse Code that would have to be carefully learnt by both musician and rank and file. Just as you may target Enemy officers, picking off their musicians, signallers or radiomen could cause similar chaos in the Enemy ranks. These often very young musicians were the “comms” of their day, giving officers the ability to pass on ‘coded’ orders in the heat of battle. The audio version of a signal flag, to rally around?

The film about Arnhem and Operation Market Garden, A Bridge Too Far, amply illustrates that well over a century later, without comms such as radios that work, you might be better off with a bugler or whistler!

There is lots of interesting material here – from the difference between sound quality and audibility over distance of brass or copper instruments, a bugle played at Waterloo by 15 year old Trumpeter Edwards, who joined up aged 9 years old to trivia nuggets such as where the phrase “being drummed out” comes from and what this sounded like.

For those gamers who enjoy having suitable films playing during games in the clubhouse or background, they might like this album.

For those like me who have a playlist of suitable period music to use whilst painting those era of troops, this is also a very good album.

Admittedly some might not like the short spoken introductions and prefer just solid uninterrupted music.

Attractively packaged with the Christa Hook picture, informative liner notes, spoken introduction and good clear sound quality – if you are interested in vintage instruments, military music, signals and comms or the Napoleonic and Peninsula War period, this is an affordable and interesting addition to your music collection.

You can file it on the music shelf, right next to 1970 film soundtrack of Waterloo and the Sharpe’s Rifles soundtrack CD.

I hope my intended gift is suitably well received!

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, 2nd July 2021

https://prometheusinaspic.blogspot.com/2020/07/featherstonia-acw-rules.html

B.P.S. Blog Post Script

Donald Featherstone’s vintage typed American Civil War rules had a section for the morale role of military bands on the gaming table – I am indebted for this bit of gaming archaeology to MSFoy of the Prometheus in Aspic blog

https://prometheusinaspic.blogspot.com/2020/07/featherstonia-acw-rules.html

It’s behind you, Mulder and Scully …

It’s behind you! I liked The Borrowers style scale disparity in this photo as ‘Mulder’ and ‘Scully’ of The X Files investigate the giant children terrorising the (Babbacombe) Model Village in Devon, Southwest UK.

I have always said The X Files should have been set in the slightly weird, folkloric and legendary southwest of Britain.

Or set it back in the Bronte period, tracking down the godly, the ungodly and the Gothic … although arguably Jane Austen’s Pride, Prejudice and Zombies got there already?

Seven series of The X Files watched over the last few months, over a 160+ episodes down and I still have four more series to go to the finishline of 218 episodes and a couple of feature films. (Maybe I should have gone for charity sponsorship …)

It might explain why I am not painting figures or blogposting every spare hour of leisure daylight. Like our hobby itself as observed by someone in Facebook forum, it is all “Time Well Wasted“.

More of the few years old colourful leaflet for Babbacombe Model Village

What might I have possibly gained for my other hobby time well wasted of gaming, toy soldiers and figure painting?

Some interesting toy soldier figure links and scenario ideas so far:

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2021/03/24/the-hex-files-things-are-getting-strange-im-starting-to-worry-this-could-be-a-case-for-mulder-and-scully/

Others? If I had been very well organised, I should have kept an “ideas from idle viewing” gaming scenarios logbook. I didn’t. It’s all those “To Be Continued” episode cliffhangers. I can always look back through the Wiki lists of episodes to remind me.

Any Toy Soldiers in the X Files?

Lots of Army, Air Force, police and shadowy government figures in this series. And some toy soldiers …

Toy soldiers turn up only once (so far) during an early 1995 X Files episode The Walk about dead or badly wounded US soldiers from the recent Kuwait or First Gulf War (The X Files Season 3, Episode 7 ‘The Walk’).

Poor young Trevor, the US Army General’s son, ends up buried in the sand by a sand pit monster version of the phantom warrior. There is obviously some ‘meaningful’ sandpit / toy soldiers / Desert Storm / Desert Warriors symbolic echoes going on as well. http://www.thexfiles.com/episodes/season3/3×07.html

Play indoors. Don’t play in the sandpit, Trevor! (BRENNAN KOTOWICH as Trevor Callahan)

Screengrab camera shots of The X Files Season Three E pisode Seven ‘The Walk’ shows Trevor playing with standard plastic Hing Kong / China pound store versions of Airfix British Paratroops and some tanks. These Airfix copy soldiers in 1995 have new smooth helmets, pretty commonly available still https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2017/06/13/more-combat-mission-80-pound-store-plastic-soldiers-part-2/

What series or TV programmes distract from or inspire your gaming scenarios?

Blog posted by Mark, Man of TIN 25 June 2021

B.P.S. Blog Post Script

Who doesn’t love a model village?

https://themodelvillager.wordpress.com

Wade’s Toy Soldier Artillery from vintage Airfix OOHO French Artillery ImagiNations

Inspiration for ImagiNations units comes from very odd and whimsical sources such as this slightly Sergeant Pepper ceramic toy soldier by Wade, glimpsed recently on Etsy.

Great moustache!

My starting materials would be these vintage Airfix French Napoleonics:

Napoleonic French Artillery (centre) posted for future service by the Duchy of Tradgardland

These were a gift of some battered Airfix OOHO French Napoleonic Artillery and other figures from Alan Gruber (The Duchy of Tradgardland blog).

Having no intention of starting proper historical Napoleonic gaming, this gave me leave to experiment with colour and ImagiNations using these familiar vintage figures.

I searched and found some side and back views as well again from Etsy:

Although not exactly the same, the Wade figure having a longer tail coat and no gaiters, it gave me an idea of how to develop these spare random Artillery figures and a future use for any stray French shako troops that I might find whilst sorting.

The first attempt painting involved a multi racial unit but somehow the ones painted with darker skin tones worked better (Revell Aquacolor Acrylic Dark Earth colour).

An attempt at a flag colour. Blue sky, sandy beach?

One of my family said they thought the figures had a Caribbean look to the bright uniforms.

Equally they might suit the Bronte ImagiNations islands Gaaldine and Gondal set in the South or North Pacific.

Borrowed a couple of Esci French Napoleonic Artillery pieces that I painted in the 1980s

And on a less beach background, this is how the figures look.

I have painted a few Airfix Waterloo Napoleonic French Infantry (including some chewed up or melted ones) from the same gift to join with firelock troops from the Napoleonic Artillery set.

A colourful ImagiNations unit to play with.

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN June 2021