Picking up those brushes again.

Hi and welcome to the occasional mutterings of Dave Doc, a military modeller and some time gamer. Gaming and model making has given me a real education, History & Geography(obvious really), Artistry, Politics, Economics, Logistics, Project Management -you try building miniature armies without the last 3.

I will use the blog to record my creations & the odd occasion I actually do some gaming.

I have always been inspired by the aesthetic side of gaming. Playing on well constructed terrain using excellently painted units is always a joy.

Saturday, 9 November 2019

Sudan - Something a bit different . Making Movies

As the title says , it’s been an interesting week. A little while ago I was contacted by a film company enquiring if I could assist with shooting scenes in miniature for the battle of Omdurman. After some too-ing and froing on the practicalities it came to fruition this last week. There were of course some compromises to be made as this was 1898 , not earlier in the Sudan . The artistic intention was to show the real mass of the native forces against the might of Victorian firepower and its ultimate effects . 

Omdurman was a very on sided battle with around 50 British dead , versus 12,000 of the Kalifas forces . It was real imposition of European ways into Africa .

The camp and Zariba 
We used around 20kg of two types of sand to ensure all the bases were properly concealed, plus we mixed in two blends of green scatter and bit of clump foliage to break things up. We were using 1/2 & 1 inch brushes to ensure the sand was spread around and blended in and cleared off the figures ... mindi am still finding sand in things!

The mass advances toward the Zariba 
The Cameron’s man the Zariba 

Cavalry advances 

I had previously added in some specifics for 1898 , particularly the maxim guns , and a powerful steamer . 

The first full set up . 

The cavalry charge 

The gunboat brings its firepower to bear .

And now some behind the scenes shots

Studios des Paris - we were in studio 7 . The studio was set up by Luc Besson , yes him of Leon..

The cavern that was studio 7 .. ready for the crew to set up. lighting and camera

Myself , MartinC and JamesM setting up under the lights .. 

Due to issues with camera wobble we had to change the set up to a lower table .. that kept us busy..
The blue screens are to provide background for post CGI processing to add back ground later. The camera was set up.

Camera set for aerial shots 
Benjamin steers the camera - Rolling...


We had to rearrange and reset as the director and cinematographer asked for things to be moved, filled out etc .We also had some license to set up and call out any issues we saw. 
Setting up scenes .

Damn.. I think corporal Jones needs moving a 1/4 of an inch.... myself and Martin dealing with fine details 

Overall it was a great experience and a real behind the scenes look at the craft and graft required to make the stuff we see on our screens .

My thanks must go to James (his post is here ) and Martin without who’s help and friendship this  would not have been possible ... cheers guys . 

We don’t know when it will air , likely to be years  - it may never get off the cutting room floor .. - but hopefully it will . 

Monday, 21 October 2019

Sudan - Steamer and Egyptian Battallion

The latest additions completed . First up is the third steamer for the flotilla . It’s based on bits from a resin Grand Manner stern wheel one I picked up a while ago. I built new superstructure from foam board, plasticard and also some printed card bits I had designed using PowerPoint.  It is to represent a vessel from later in the period and has some heavier weapons , a ,12lb , 3lb and 2 maxim guns - these were all sourced from HLBS - nice pieces. I have made it so  the various flags and ensigns are swappable.

the sailors are a pack I had from Pulp Miniatures- very nice sculpts . I also think this one will see duty on some pulp games I am sure.

Next a 48 figure unit for the Egyptian Army . All Perry figures . Just 1 left to do of these now

I just need to do a last sort through the Sudan lead pile boxes to see what I have left to do - its much reduced at least!

Work in hand


No more than 3 things on the PAINTING table at once. Nothing new added until something is finished.

PREPARATION work is done when I don't fancy detail painting. Cleaning up, converting, undercoating etc.

PLANNING is expressions of interest or things that have inspired me to be created with no definite timescale as yet.


On the PREPATION table.
WW2 15mm

Storage wars