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 30 November 2019

Battleground 2019.

Today saw the final show of the season, and also my local one - Battleground , at Stockton on Tees. It’s a great show , which Leon from Pendraken has been working hard to keep alive and then improve . It has a decent range of traders , and the  bring and buy was pretty good too.

As it’s our local show the guys from the Old Guard Group had decided to put on something new. Stu has been leading on driving the building of the 28mm WW2 Western Desert forces . Due to various other commitments over the last few months I wasn’t able to do any of the forces , but I was of course able to supply a lot of desert themed terrain from my Sudan stuff .

So here are a few shots of the action.

 Rules were Bolt action .

The Brits are dug in defending a battie box atop the hill with a force of Italians and Africa Korps attacking.

By the end of the day although the AK has been atop the hill they had lost their armour and the British still had a pair of Matildas that were about to wreak havoc, so it was callled a British victory 

It was certainly busy late morning 
I really liked the table next us , which was a Mediterranean game of the attack on Leros, look ace

As for stash, given I went without a shopping list it turned into some left field stuff 

This is all John and Andy from Ainsty’s fault // Bas@@@ds...
So then it some extra bits for Gaslands , templates , dice, markers and weapons kits. There was then some Crooked Dice Banana Splits ATVs etc. I also picked up some pre planned 10mm ACW and !0mm Fantasy stuff (for James’ project)/ 

Then the bring & buy produced this large wooden castle .. it was picked up for £20. It will be given a bit of a tart up and will be used for grandson Harry’s Birthday next year along with some soldiers .... see what I did there ...

All in all a grand day 

Then when I got home . My long awaited .. ie nearly 3 months Battlefront order turned up .. given my 15mm WW2 forces stash some serious top up 

So , I think I can truly say the stash mountain has been topped up - ready for the winter season already .

Sunday 17 November 2019

WIP - Winter painting season plans .

It’s been a fairly hectic back half of the year. The painting and modelling that has been completed was focussed on getting stuff done for the film shoot in Paris. This has made though a decent dent in the Sudan lead/plastic mountain - there really isn’t that much left that I want ( and I sure don’t need) to do.

I have given the cave a decent sort out and the preparation and paint desk are ready for some serious production . The AHPC paint challenge will be kicking off in just over a months time so it’s time to get ready.

I do like  a clean desk , but it’s a rare occurrence ! It won’t last long 

It’s been a poor few months for gaming , but that should straighten out now with no real commitments over the next few months

Plans for the winter ( in nothing but scale order ) are :-

1/300th Team Yankee , terrain items . Ruined buildings etc
1/300th Cruel Seas , 2 Fairmile MGB , and with luck a full size destroyer

10mm Fantasy units to contribute to JamesM “For Joshua” project
10mm ACW , Confederate and Union , a brigade of each , plus bits n bobs

15mm WW2 terrain , more Normandy buildings and large bridge
15mm WW2 USA , specific items for D Day games (bulldozers , wading tanks etc)
15mm WW2 USA , 101 AB round out of the stuff I have
15mm WW2 USA , Infantry units
15mm WW2 USA , 82AB company
15mm WW2 , German , Panzer Lehr Tank units
15mm WW2 , German , Grenadier unit.

28mm. Sudan , British . 36 Figure Infantry . KOSLI
28mm. Sudan , Egyptian/Sudanese 48 Figure infantry, gendarmes
28mm Sudan, Beja , about 100 figured
28mm terrain , for Necromunda

Well that looks pretty busy ,...and of course no plan survives first contact. Though at present nothing else is piquing the interest, well maybe something horse and musket related but who knows. Certainly all of that won’t get completed , but with a fair wind there will be some decent damage to it.

On a side note . I have been enjoying the latest “Setting the Scene’  book by Pat Smith . All good sound technique , and well photographed. Plus some extras from Nick aka Molterie .. all good stuff. Recommend.

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 .