Thursday, May 17, 2007

Painting and Converting

Well, last night I finished off the last couple of figures to complete my dismounted dragoons. I’m painting an extra one to be a horse-holder. Once that’s done, I’m going to make sadlery for a pair of horses in more static poses from Green Stuff and mate them up on the one base to represent the rider less mounts of the company.

On a related thought, I’ve been looking at the Austrian grenadiers with a mind to turning them into dismounted Horse Grenadiers (yes, I know I was only going to have the one dismounted troop, but my mind wandered…) and I think with a bit more Green Stuff I could sculpt false boot-tops. The protruding gaiter-top could be painted white and passed off as a boot-stocking. I’ll have a fiddle and see how it goes.

Speaking of converting things, I really MUST have a go at producing a mounted drummer for the dragoons. Is there a nice online picture "somewhere" that might give me an idea how such an instrument might "sit"?

Painting. I have become a firm convert to the black undercoat method. My painting seems to go so much easier when I do it this way. This is especially true when I am painting with blue – my Bavarian Grenadiers have been a breeze to paint so far. Three to go. Red is more of a problem, but I find that by the time I have finished putting the highlights on, the patchiness of the base-coat has become rather a non-issue.

Again on painting; does anyone here paint for hours at a time? I’ve tried and failed miserably. I’ve gotten enthused at the idea of having a day off work where I sit down for eight hours and get huge amounts of work done on a huge number of figures. I always wind up getting bored and going out to buy a book or something.

For me the most productive painting time is the 30 minutes I take while I’m getting ready to go to work in the morning. I just put 2-3 colours on 2-3 figures and things seem to move along quite nicely.

What’s your experience?


Bluebear Jeff said...

One problem a lot of people have when trying to paint for long periods of time is that their backs get tired/sore and it forces them to quit.

What this generally means is that your chair is too high for your table height and you are "bending over" too much. If you have an adjustable computer chair, try lowering it all the way and see if that helps your back while painting.

-- Jeff

Bluebear Jeff said...


On another matter, are you interested in the Duchy of Alzheim joining in the diplomatic soup of the "Emperor vs Elector" group blog?

If so, let me know at and I'll get you an invitation to join. I'm sure that you would be an asset.

There are a few posts on the OSW group and the actual site is here:

-- Jeff

marinergrim said...

I generally have an hour painting thenm take a break only to return twenty minutes later. however, the sessions get shorter and shorter as the day wears on - boredom plays a part but it's more to do with the chair and table (just like Jeff said). when I get my hobby room I'm intending the painting station to be worktop height (900mm heigh).

As for drummers on mounted dragoons take a look at the Front Rank website and the French dragoons for the WSS. they have drummers there with the drum perched on the knee.

Heinz-Ulrich von Boffke said...

Hi Greg,

I seem to work best in about 2-3 hour blocks with a break or two, having long ago given up on the idea of painting for hours at a time (i.e., all day and all of the night). Any longer, and I get bored or tired, or my wife and cat begin to feel ignored. ;-) Seriously though, boredom and fatigue for me mean lots of painting mistakes to fix later, and that's no fun.

As far as BIG units are concerned, I've discovered that dividing the unit into 3-4 smaller lots of figures gets things done quickly enough but without it taking forever just to paint one item (hands, or faces for example) on 60+ figres. This is what I'm doing with my current batch of RSM figures. I might even be able to have all 63 figures finished by about June 1st! Amazing what a little at a time each evening will accomplish.

Looking forward to more photos of your dragoons. Especially the conversions.

Best Regards,


Bloggerator said...

Painting: It's funny how many of us get bored with painting! I don't really suffer from back pain - I think I'm OK there - but painting 20 red coats, then 20 faces, then 20 sets of yellow facings... eurgh!

Converting: I'll be getting the hacksaw out this weekens and butchering a helpless little casting. It's for the greater good, you know.

Jeff, I'll drop you a line.



SteveI said...

To avoid the boredom, I tend to paint in smaller batches of 4 - 6 figures (or strips of figures in 6mm). Usually there are as many batches as there are painting stages. Do one stage on one batch, then a different stage on another batch etc. If you get it right you have a sequence of various batches which show the whole process from primer to completed.

Poruchik said...

That's funny to me as I can't get excited about painting for anything less then a 4 hour period. I love to have a three day weekend to devted to just painting. Get up in the morning, cup of coffee, have some breakfast then sit down to paint. I take a mid day break for a sandwich and then back at it until dinner. I do try to stop after about 8 hours as that's all my shoulders and neck can take in a sitting.

I wish i could convince myself that I could get anything done in 30 minutes!


Bloggerator said...

You can get heaps done.

Just on 3-4 miniatures..!


Anonymous said...

Hey Greg,

Back on May 10/11, 2006 you show pictures of the mounted Regiment Fouquet. Can you tell me what the RSM figures are charging with the sword forward and the one with the sword up? A bunch of us on the OSW group are trying to figure out which figures they are.



Bloggerator said...


Posted this at OSW a moment ago:

The fellow with his sword forward has a square blanket roll.

The other (with sword aloft) is most likely the British cavalry-man.


Greg Horne