There they are!

There it is, the complete batallion eventually varnished and based! Note there is no flag (yet). Beside the fact that it took me ages to get new rechargeable batteries for the camera, there were some late twists in the project.

You may notice that the drummer is now wearing the imperial livery (green), and that cockades are now pre-1815. This 1815 project has become a 1813-1814 project...!! The flag base will cary the 1812-pattern banner, and if one day I wish to play a 1815 game, I can always do a 1815-flag base.

Enough with details, this project is now over... time to plan the next! I'll run two projects in parallel. A 2nd bataillon of light infantry, and the 1st squadron of the 4th hussard.

I hope this blog has given ideas to some of the readers, even though it hasn't been the most active. I may keep posting during my future projects, but don't expect a much higher pace: one battalion a year is my speed and I'm affraid the more I paint the less I want to give up on details!

Oh, and happy Winter holidays to all the visitors of the blog!


Voltigeurs (part 2)

And here are the long, long awaited voltigeurs skirmishing.

I've had a long break this summer, for various (personnal) reasons. But here they are, and I'm fairly happy with the result. Though now that I look at the photos, I realize that I forgot the blue point in the centre of the cockades!! This will be sorted out.

One thing to mention. Compared with the other Perry "light infantry" miniatures, these skirmishers are a bit tall. Which is a shame, as the voltigeurs are supposedly the shorter men of the elite (by opposition to carabiniers). Oh well.

I've ordered the flag (GMB designs), and am in the process of ordering the bases (from Veni Vidi Vici), so stay tuned for the final post on this battalion project...!

For what's coming afterwards, it will be the 4th hussard. I've assembled the horses already, they're waiting for gap-filling and priming.


Bastille Day WIP's parade

It may still be work in progress, but this bataillon only needs basing now. It's time for a review, and what better day that the French National Day? There are a total of 28 men on foot, plus a mounted colonel. Here's a nearly finished 5th regiment of light infantry!

On this close-up you'll notice an NCO, that's the line NCO from Perry that I modified for light infantry. I also "played" with the private following him: look at his shako plate and his trousers.

This is an idea of what it will look like when deployed in line with the command stand in the front.

As I am now painting the last 4 skirmishers to finish this bataillon in a wargame format, I start wondering about what I'll do next. I'm not sure I have the stamina to paint yet another bataillon of light infantry. At my pace, repetition seems like eternity! Possibly some hussards?

I also need to take into account that with a baby expected in Septembre, I may have less time for my hobbies! I should not try to be too ambitious... oops...


Waiting for Bastille Day

Right, I've had loads of distractions in the last two months. I managed to paint only 6 minis in that period: the remaining voltigeur and five chasseurs (including a NCO). I did little conversion on these. All that's left is now the skirmishing poses (4 voltigeurs). I'm done with march attack figures for now. As planned from the beginning, there are a total of 24 minis, plus 4 figures for the command stand (chef de bataillon, eagle bearer, and eagle guard x2). Plus a mounted colonel. The pompoms were painted after I made sure the different figure poses are balanced between the different companies.

I'll do a post on the 14th of July: Bastille Day!

This is an idea from Greg Privat (http://gloarmy.blogspot.com/ for those who don't know) to organize a parade for the French National Day. So I'll keep the readers waiting two more days :) As there are no bases yet, it will be a WIP parade!


When the Perry are late to deliver

Tomorrow is the 14th of May. The Perrys cleared my cheque on the 14th of April. And my order was sent by mail 10 days before. You do the math... that is a lot of time!! I ran out of minis to paint two weeks ago already! Well, that is not exactly true, as I painted a spare mounted colonel I had, which I was planning to keep for the very end of the project.

I am slightly disappointed by how the face turned up. I will have to buy a new brush.

 But at least I'm quite pleased with the horse. The photo doesn't render the silver shine of the grey (one coat of "Sky Grey", and then some "Silver" added sparsely), but it looks good in real.
Same as the red collar. It's not pink at all, it's just a camera effect!


voltigeurs company

Here are 3 voltigeurs completed. I ran out of light infantry miniatures to paint and my Perry order hasn't been delivered yet!

I enjoyed the mini on the right. I gave it different epaulettes and trousers (as there was no regulation for those, different variants co-existed). I also gave it brown trousers: a souvenir from the Spanish campaign?


Regimental command

Here is the command stand - I still don't know if I got the colours right for the eagle bearer and its guard, but I doubt any one would know what it should be! I'll have to order a GMB flag some time...

This brings the total of painted miniatures in this bataillon to 19. I've got 3 voltigeurs left to paint (already well under way), and I'll be short of minis to paint. No worry, there's another Perry order on the way!


preview of what's next

as the carabiniers company was actually finished one week before it was pictured, I've since started working on the command stand. Apparently, the Perry Miniatures don't reflect the 1815 uniform! First of all, there should be no pike bearer. Then, the eagle bearer should not have two epaulettes. My conclusion is that this is more of a 1812-14 command stand!

Nevermind, I have the minis, they look good, so... why not...! I found in the Osprey books (Napoleon's light infantry, Napoleon's line infantry) some clues about how to paint them. That's where I found the silver stripes on the shako. I've painted one pike bearer and was rather satisfied with it. The "chef de bataillon" is also done - lots of blue colour, that didn't take long! The last two are WIP.

Next weekend, I'm off to Salute (London), I'm very much looking forward to it!!

the carabiniers company

A bit late (it took me one week to decide to recharge the camera's batteries!), here is the carabinier company. Note that I've included the pioneer in there.It took me two weeks (as expected) to complete these 4.

As slow as always, but as long as I keep going, I'll see the end of the project!


two weeks later

Here are the next 4. There are now 11 miniatures finished in this 5th light regiment. I chose to paint the drummer in the royal livery (that is a blue uniform, by opposition to the green of the imperial livery), though I couldn't find much documentation on this. I had to guess for some areas.

The three chasseurs have the lentil-shape pompon. I haven't made any modification on those minis.Faces? I still have to improve, but believe me, I come from far! I'm fairly pleased with these and their style should remain the same through the whole project.

I'll now do the company of carabiniers (4 of them), and it will include a pioneer. Again, I give myself two weeks to do those 4 minis!


6 less to go...

I've just finished these 6 miniatures! I'm quite pleased with the results. I managed to paint a couple of hours a day for a week, that is more than average. Early stage of the project I guess! Yes, I paint really slow.

A few mods I had made: on the 1st figure from the left, I modified the shako plate. On the 3rd, I added a scarf. On the last one, I modded the trousers. I thought I'd add a bit of variety.

I also tried to vary the trousers colours (white being the norm). I gave them a campaign look. The only unpainted area is the pompons, as I'll see later how I arrange my companies.


On this one (above) you can see the shako that I have modified. 'hope you like them!


blocking the colours

Still no highlight what so ever at this stage, but I've added the white piping on the uniform, added white on top of grey belts, and a few other bits. I also like to give a quick brown coat on the bases, this gives at once more character to the miniature.

I really like the poses of these Perry sculpts, they're very dynamic!


first colours

Right. I've started painting the uniform (dark Prussian blue, not very visible until it will be highlighted) and trousers. I've tried to vary the trousers colours; I've also primed the belts in light grey. Of course these will all need highlights further on. I won't always show every step of my progress, but at least for the first batch: so that you see how I proceed. Click to enlarge the photo.

Next: red collars and white piping!


painting faces

I've decided to do 6 chasseurs in parallel. First step (well, after cleaning the miniatures from flash and undercoating in black): flesh colours.Here are two close-up (well, I won't zoom any further, you would start noticing all the imprecisions).


And for the whole batch (click for better view):

I think I'll paint the belts next, then the blue of the uniforms, then the white piping.

note: I've actually slightly modified 3 of the miniatures (using putty). More on this when I come to paint those special areas!


test mini

Ok, don't get too enthusiastic, and don't expect me to keep posting as often in the future!! This mini was painted a week ago when I was experimenting blue colours. That is an officer from the young guard command pack, but that is fine for light infantry. In the end, I decided to go for the following:
black undercoat, Dark Prussian Blue coat, highlight in Prussian Blue (all Vallejo paints). The pompon isn't painted yet, I've got to decide to which company it belongs!

(btw I've never tried the "3 tones technique" that is described in many places.)

so here it is:

It's difficult to take photos. How to get the best light, zoom or no zoom, macro or super macro mode, flash or no flash... I'll need to improve in this domain too - so please don't be harsh on me. Overall I'm quite pleased with the result (the miniature, not the photos). I do not intend to compete with the quality of a Sascha Herm's painting! but it should still be a very reasonable standard. The 2nd picture renders the colours best.

The officer wears the surtout (a sort of campaign jacket). That saved me from painting the white piping... Actually to be honest, I painted the piping to start with! Til I realized that was a mistake...

minis received!

After 3 weeks waiting, a small packet was delivered to my desk at work (I always get deliveries at work, in case I have to sign). The first 4 boxes of light infantry! There is a LOT of flash to be cleaned  up, more than I have experienced before..

see by yourselves (from top to bottom, packs FN71, FN73, FN74, FN76)

 I can't wait to start working on them!



Time for the first real work update. This consists in the work I have been doing upstream: how many miniatures I'll need, which manufacturer packs to order, how I intend to base the companies. I've always liked to know where I'm going! This doesn't have to be definitive sketch of what will be done (I'm likely to adapt things as I go along), but should give a good picture of the final result.

The usual struggle is to decide how to base the 6 companies. I've looked into different solutions, but I don't like to see a company (4 minis each) spread over multiple bases. Hence I can't have 6 minis per base. With the option I've chosen, I'll have two bases of two Chasseurs companies (8 minis), and two bases of 1 flank company (4 minis). And in case flank companies should be deployed as skirmishers, there will be four skirmishers bases (2 minis).

Now, 24 minis to represent a bataillon is the general use and reflects the 1:20 ratio that is targeted. HOWEVER! I want nice Eagle/Fanion stands... this will add miniatures, but should give a special look to the unit. Add a Chef de Bataillon walking in front of the line, and that makes a total of 28 minis per bataillon. Yes, that's a bit much, but let's face it, it looks much better. If it comes to wargaming one day, one could always say that the stand doesn't count in the numbers.

Another thing to point out about basing. I've seen this on Saxon Dog blog and really liked it: allow some space on the bases in front of the companies. I'll simply do the same!

I've also drawn this other picture to illustrate how the miniatures will be organized:

1 drummer behind each Chef de Bataillon
1 extra chasseur Captain per bataillon (in the rank)
1 sapeur within the carabiniers company of the 1st bataillon
1 NCO per bataillon (these are minis from line infantry and will need modifications, such as epaulettes)
1 mounted colonel

There won't be any greatcoat (theoritically, the Chef de Bataillon decides if the whole bataillon wears the greatcoat or not). I'll try to give them a slight campaign look.

I've also been training before hand on getting a nice blue colour for my light infantry. But that will be for the next post!

edit: on the 2nd picture, the FN codes redirect to the Perry Miniatures packs. In the end I'll be using:
FN71 light infantry, regiment command (1 pack, using 6/6)
FN72 light infantry, bataillon command (1 pack, using 4/6)
FN73 light infantry, chasseurs (4 packs, using 20/24)
FN74 light infantry, flank companies (3 packs, using 15/18)
FN75 light infantry, flank companies, skirmishing (3 packs, using 18/18)
FN76 light infantry, chasseurs, lentil-shaped pompon (1 pack, using 6/6)
FN83 young guard, command (1 pack, using 1/6)
FN04 mounted infantry colonels (1 pack, using 1/3)
FN13 line infantry, NCOs (1 pack, using 2/6)
FN16 line infantry, casualties (1 pack, using ?/6)


Ok, I'll try to make these questions/answers short:

Q: why Light Infantry
A: I like the blue dominant of their uniform. They are also slightly less known and documented than the line Infantry.

Q: why the 5th?
A: not too large numbers (not too much to paint!). And as part of the VI corps, one could easily imagine alternative wargaming scenarios where the 5th could be dispatched on a different front. That is, of course, if one day I start wargaming...

Q: why Perry Miniatures?
A: they're the best. Price isn't the most important thing (I paint slowly, and not large numbers), though they're amongst the cheapest anyway! the most important is they are probably the best researched and most realisticly sculpted French miniatures.

Q: why 1815?
A: As Perrys are the best make, and as they do French Naps for the 1815 period only, it has to be 1815, even though this is not the most prestigious year for Napoleon and his armies...

Q: how to research the uniform?
A: I own some of the famous Rousselot plates, and there is also very good (legal) information on the web. I rely a lot on two websites (both in French...)
Mont-Saint-Jean by A. Cabaret
L'Histoire Autrement by B.Coppens

(oh, and yes, I am French... that helps to read those...)

Comments are here for you (readers) to ask further questions, but I doubt I have many readers yet (though surprisingly, I got a comment of the Joker himself on my first post!)



Hi all. I decided I'd share my miniatures painting experience with you.

As a matter of fact, I've been painting French Napoleonic minis for a few years. That doesn't mean that I have painted large numbers, nor have I exceptional skills. No, I'm slow at this, I research my work before hand, and I am not intending to join a wargame club before years.

However, I've managed to keep painting regularly 28mm minis for over 3 years now, focusing on a 1815 French army. I've completed a bataillon of Old Guard chasseurs, a bataillon of Young Guard tirailleurs, a battery of the Guard, and a Guard artillery train (I may post pictures of these later). Yes, the usual "beginner" mistake: painting the Guard first. But don't forget, I paint for pleasure before I paint for gaming: gaming is not on the horizon yet.

As time comes to start a new project, I'll try to document it online. I enjoy following painting/wargaming blogs and intend to bring my own contribution to the community. And who knows, I may inspire some of my readers?

Time to announce my new project has arrived
drums roll

 it will be the regiment of 5e Rgt of Light Infantry!

The 5th light served in the VI corps at Waterloo which was initially used as reserve before being involved against the Prussians on the French right instead. Also named "regiment d'Angouleme", its 1st and 2nd bataillons were present during the Belgian campaign and it numbered just under 900 men.

As with my previous projects, I'll be using Perry Miniatures (28mm), I'll use a 1:20 ratio (900 men => about 45 miniatures), I'll use the march attack pose, and I'll base them following usual standards. There will be additional skirmishers for when the flank companies are deployed.

I'm currently waiting for two parcels in the post... one with the first 4 packs of Perry miniatures (FN71, FN73, FN74, FN76), and one with 6 Vallejo paints to complete my set of colours. In the meantime, I'll precise my project.