Me & M Buonaparte – First painting…

By | June 6, 2014

So… having signed up for Mr Stacey’s little Nappy adventure (yes, we know that sounds wrong) and purchased a small mountain of finely crafted Perry plastic to make up the bulk of my 1813 Russian infantry companies, I sat down to paint a ‘test’ unit. Yes, we know its more usual to paint a test model, but this is a BIG project..!

assembling the first unit

Perry’s 28mm plastics are beautifully sculpted, and the information that comes with the box is very useful as guide to painting and assembly. As a group, we’d decided on a 3×2 formation of 40mm bases with 4 men to a base – meaning 24 men to a unit in a 6 x 4 formation. All well and good, and I vaguely understood that, like the War of Spanish Succession I’d collected and played in 6mm, it was usual to represent part of the unit as grenadiers as the unit would actually be representing a battalion of companies, most of which would be standard line infantry with one battalion of ‘elite’ grenadiers.

At this point I paused as I realised I really needed to understand the kind of order of battle I was going to try and model and how I could represent that using the Black Powder ruleset we intended to use. Doc and Paul (my other main partners in crime on this project) had posted about it on our forum thread, but I was too clueless on the terminology and tactics to really follow it. I need to get reading. But in the meantime, I’d paint my test unit with a base of grenadiers and follow the guide on the box rather than trying to recreate a particular unit from the time…

assembling the first unit 2

Assembly was pretty easy – though the heads are a bit of a pig (though they do tend to end up at odd angles which actually looks good, so that’s all right then…)

First unit - base colours First Unit - base colours - close up

Base colours for the Russians is white and green, and basecoating in white is paying dividends. However, in my haste to get a good solid white to work with, I’d gone a little heavy on the spray undercoat. Not to worry: I always hate this phase. I’m a pretty messy painter. I’m usually happy with the end results – but it take some work to get there. I long to be able to do a neat and tidy basic job… I’m more of an impressionist painter than an old master…(!)

Lesson learned: don’t stick the backpack on until after basecoating: its a pig to get in at the details in and around the hanging cartridge boxes and swords…

First Unit - Ready for dipping First unit - Details

Adding in the details: its starting to come together…

Almost finished 1st unit

The nearly finished first unit: Liberal use of the invaluable ArmyPainter strong tone dip, and a pretty hurried and messy paint and base job becomes a lovely unit to look at.

Just some edging, a de-shine, and the addition of a couple of company flags to do and the first unit will be ready for the tabletop…!

On to the next unit (with separately undercoated backpacks this time!) – and time for a think about army composition and how best to represent Napoleonic formations and tactics on the tabletop with Warlord’s Black Powder rules…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *