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By smacdowall, Aug 2 2020 05:34PM

Decades ago, when my eyes were better and my hands steadier, I painted Edward III King of England and herald (Essex miniatures). I am still rather proud of the job I managed on the surcoats, caparisons and trumpet banner.

Knowing just how many fleur-de-lys I would have to paint, I have been putting off painting Edward’s opponent — Philip VI Valois, King of France. In many ways my painting style has improved over the years, but not the ability or patience to execute repetitive finely detailed designs.

I toyed with the idea of transfers. Battle Flag has a transfer set for King Philip’s shield, surcoat and barding to fit a First Corps miniature. I decided to try it out but I did not get on well with it. To my eye the transfers just don’t look right. They are far too pristine and look like the machine created designs that they are.

So it was back to hand painting using the transfers as a guide.

I am rather pleased with the result.

I took my time, painting only as many fleurs-de-lys as I could handle in a single siting. In this way I took several days to paint the horse caparison, doing one side first and then the other. The tedium of the job was not helped by the fact that it is almost impossible to paint a yellow design directly on blue and have it look good. Therefore I first painted all the fleurs-de-lys in white then came back the following day to overpaint them in yellow. Painting just for an hour or two each day, doing only a few designs at a time, took all the tedium out of the job.

Accompanying the king are (from right to left, their perspective): Bernard seigneur de Moreuil (Front Rank), Louis de Montmorency sieur de Laval (Perry),

Miles VIII sieur de Noyers carrying the Oriflamme (Perry),

King Philip VI (First Corps), his herald (Crusader)

and Guillaume de Martel (Front Rank) whose descendant and namesake also fought at Agincourt.

Keen medievalists will note that the Perry figures are a bit ahead of their time when it comes to fashion. This is because they are designed for the Agincourt period when plate armour had become more complete.

I decided some time ago not to worry too much about this as they are such lovely miniatures. I find that one or two in early 1400’s armour does not jar too much, especially if I stick to models with surcoats.

The figure I have painted up as Louis de Montmorency was designed by the Perrys to represent the comte de Fauquembergues at Agincourt and rather annoyingly has his coat of arms cast in relief on the surcoat.

Fortunately Montmorency had the same design of a cross with scallops, just in different colours with the addition of four eagles in the quadrants.

By smacdowall, Jul 5 2020 09:37AM

In their famous green and white livery, these archers round out the Black Prince's contingent. The figures are a mix of Perry, Front Rank and Crusader miniatures. Some of the larger Front Rank bows and hands have been swapped for the better proportioned Perry.

I have a few more English to paint (the Earls of Oxford and Warwick's contingents) but will pause for a bit as I now need to concentrate on painting up a few more French knights.

By smacdowall, Jun 22 2020 03:15PM

I have now finished painting the Black Prince’s contingent for Crécy.

Here is young Prince Edward of Woodstock with his men at arms. Front rank: the Black Prince (centre), Godfrey de Harcourt (to his right), the Earl of Stafford (to his left).

And the rear view: Sir Reynold Cobham (right) Sir Richard FitzSimons (standard bearer, centre) and a man at arms in the Prince’s livery.

To fight alongside the men at arms are some spearmen, led by Sir John Chandos (white shield with red pile), and Sir Bartholomew de Burghersh (red shield with yellow lion).

This is the full contingent arrayed for battle with archers in front. The miniatures are a mix of Perry, Front Rank, Essex and Wargames Foundry.

I have greatly enjoyed painting them and pleased with the way I have managed to blend the miniatures from different manufacturers. It has required a bit of surgery here and there with head, hand and bow swaps but I think it is worth it.

Next up with be a unit of Cheshire and Flintshire archers. Then I need to think about painting up some more French knights.

By smacdowall, Jun 15 2020 08:50PM

This is my favourite Oscar Wilde quote. It is also the most applicable to me.

I made a solemn vow to myself to use the opportunity of the lockdown to chip away at the lead mountain and not buy any new miniatures. I have really enjoyed painting my many medieval figures over the last couple of months and so far my resolve has been holding.

I have completed my Wars of the Roses collection.

Now that the Black Prince’s contingent is nearly complete...

... all I need is a few more French knights and I can refight Crécy and other engagements of the early Hundred Years War.

Then along comes temptation!

For some months I have been admiring the pics of !898 miniatures Spanish Tercios.

They look like just what I need to build up my Spanish to fight Rocroi and the Franco/Spanish engagements of the 1640’s.

With the arrival of Corvid19 in March when Spain was particularly badly hit, I thought I should order a Tercio immediately — just incase. So I did.

In an uncharacteristic demonstration of self-discipline I left the package unopened for three months, knowing that if I did I would likely be tempted away from my Wars of the Roses and Crécy projects.

Until today!

I have opened the box and peered at the contents — they seem to be beautifully proportioned characterful figures.. Although I dearly want to start painting them, I am doing my best to resist the temptation by not opening the sachets.

I must finish one project before moving to the next.

Or is Oscar Wilde correct?

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