Saturday, 30 November 2013
Duke of Exeter's Bowmen - Wars of the Roses
Following an intense period of re-basing and 'refreshing' some tired looking units of various periods, I decided to paint a new unit at long last. These are the Lancastrian Duke of Exeter's Bowmen for the Wars of the Roses.
The figures are by Perry Miniatures and I have to say what a complete joy it was to assemble them. Some plastic figure sets are annoying to assemble, awkward and bloody hard work. Not these. I can honestly say that I really enjoyed assembling them. It was quite a simple task to see what arms went well with which torsos and the whole project was made so much easier by the weapons already being cast into hands. This makes for a nice easy project. I used Humbrol Polystyrene Cement and this worked perfectly.
The Perry's sculpting is just amazing. Some figures stand the test of time and will always look good. By this I mean that some figures, like for instance, the Airfix 1/32 scale 8th Army set (which must have been sculpted 40 years ago) will remain timeless because the figures just looked anatomically spot on and are so evocative of the images we have of 8th Army soldiers. Likewise some figures look awful from the time they are produced and twenty years on you are left wondering why on earth you bought them. I think in 20 years time I will look at these and will still think what wonderful beautifully proportioned sculptings they are. I wouldn't be at all surprised if in 30 years time these are still being produced.
The troops have been painted with various acrylics including, Vallejo, Miniature Paints and Citadel. I used a base colour, darker wash, highlight, then line in method. Long winded but I like the results. I have an A4 folder where I keep a sheet per troop type of step-by-step procedures used for painting a unit. There are about 25 individual steps for these troops and that's before I get to the basing(!) I do wonder sometimes whether I should just try a dip method one day!
The bases are MDF by 'Products for Wargamers' and the flora is by MiniNatur. I have moved away from static grass and use various lengths and types of grasses over a textured and painted base. There are currently 20 steps in my procedure list of basing too now!
I have used livery badge decals on the coats of the bowmen. These are the decals made by Citadel Six. If there is one tip I can give anyone to using these transfers it would be 'use decal softener'. Without it, applying them is very hard, and with it everything changed and it became an almost easy task. The instructions they include with their decals are very comprehensive and are based on excellent advice. I really like the Citadel Six decals and I will be using them a lot more as I push through 'tarting up' my collection. The Livery flag is made by Freezywater Flags, which I have done a little bit of brushwork on to give it more detail.
And here we have the box. I have always had a weakness for really good box artwork and this takes me back again to those Airfix and Esci boxes (does anyone else remember the Esci Waterloo boxed set? - I must have spent hours just looking at that Scollins artwork). I digress slightly there, but the Perry's have chosen well to have this magnificent Peter Dennis scene on the front of the box. The shocking thing for me is that I must have had these sat on a shelf in my wargaming room for 3 years before I started work on them - a hidden gem, all still attached to their sprues!
As you can probably tell, I really like these figures. Will I be getting any more? Oh yes - and I have already started painting them! I have now also ordered the Perry's mounted men-at-arms set which I just can't wait to see having now painted the Perry's armoured commanders for the bowmen.