Wednesday, February 18, 2009

French Cuirassiers

I found these a bit annoying and fiddly to paint, though I think they came out looking ok in the end. I'd say they actually have too much detail and some of it obscures things that you'd like to paint - for instance, the cartridge case makes it about impossible to paint the turnbacks. I ended up spending a bit longer on these than I should have done, which was mostly my fault for not going about them in a logical way.

Face, trousers, gloves, jacket, epaulettes and carbine are all done with colours as per the infantry a few posts down.

The yellow cloth is GW Golden Yellow over GW Iyanden Darksun (one of their foundation paints). This doesn't give great contrast, but the foundation paint goes on nicely over a dark undercoat in one coat, and the yellow brightens it up a little.

Plumes and horsetails are just VJ London Grey drybrushed over the undercoat. The sheepskins are white dry brushed over USA Tan Earth.

The black horses are a mix of Iraqi Sand and Black heavily drybrushed over the undercoat, then given a black ink wash. They look ok up close but at any distance its hard to tell they're not just plain black. Next time I'll try something with a bit more contrast.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

French Line Officers

Not the best faces in the Adler range in my opinion, but nice and easy to paint at least. I have twenty odd of these done now.
The Adler command strips contain figures based at different angles which makes it a bit awkward to get into a rhythm of painting them. So I cut them apart and base each type of figure individually so I can work along them as a line.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

French Mounted Infantry Officers

These officers will be based with a few of the infantry battallions when they're finished. I worked on these before I tackled any cavalry because I wanted to get a feel for painting them and try painting horses on something not too critical. I find horses a bit intimidating as usually when I paint something brown it looks like wood, not like horse.

The men were painted in the same way as the infantry below. The only difference is that shako trim, cords and epaulettes were done in Vallejo Dark Sand. I tried using metallics for these and they didn't look good.

Saddle cloths are Dark Sand trim on GW Blood Red cloth. The Adler sculpts are top-class here. The sculpting's better than my painting of them.

The lighter horse is
  1. GW Vermin Brown
  2. GW Chestnut Ink wash (fairly thick)
  3. GW Vermin Brown again
  4. Muzzle and Socks are white over Vallejo Iraqi Sand
  5. Mane and tail drybrushed London Grey over the undercoat.

The darker horse is
  1. GW Scorched Brown
  2. GW Bestial Brown
  3. White blaze

French Grenadiers

These are some of the first figures that I painted. I used a very nice guide by Braxen on his blog
(Painting 6mm French) as a starting point with just a couple of changes. I'm going to reproduce the steps I use here with my own modifications, but full credit to him for taking the time to figure out what colours work well.


Brown gesso with a little black. I'll cover my masochistic approach to undercoating at a later date. The short version is, I don't use sprays, ever.
As Braxen says, a brown undercoat looks like black at a distance but makes the end result a lot less dark overall. This was a great tip and not one I'd have thought of on my own.

Base Coat

  1. Vallejo Red Leather on the face, hands, cuffs, collar, epaulettes, plume and backpack
  2. Vallejo Basic Skintone on the face and hands
  3. Vallejo London Grey on the chest, legs and blanket roll
  4. Vallejo London Grey on the shako peak, around the shako top and a little dab down the sides of the shako
  5. Vallejo Dark Prussian Blue on the jacket
  6. Vallejo German Camo Brown on the rifle


  1. Vallejo white on the chest legs and turnbacks
  2. Vallejo USA Tan Earth on the rifle
  3. GW Blood Red on the cuffs, lapels, epaulettes, plume and on the shako cords
  4. Vallejo Ultramarine + spot of Vallejo Andrea Blue on the jacket

  1. GW Mithril Silver on the bayonet
  2. GW Shining Gold on the shako plate, epee handle and hilt of the epee scabard.

Notes (and a couple of deviations from Braxen's guide)

  1. Shako cords are extremely annoying to paint. I don't bother painting them and then painting over them.
  2. I prefer Blood Red to Vallejo Scarlet. It looks a lot redder to me. I'm also a bit colour-blind to red so that could be something to do with it.
  3. I paint faces as early as possible because once they're done I feel a big weight off their mind, and if they look half decent I tend to do a better job on the rest of the miniature.
  4. I think metallics look better on bayonets than doing a non-metallic-metal look. I use metallic paint for things that are actually metal (eg. shako plate) and use normal acrylics for things that are metallic cloth (epaulette fringes, gold shako cords, saddle cloth piping etc).
  5. The adler figures don't seem to have any clear indication of where the rifle stops and the bayonet starts. My early attempts ended up with guys carrying what looked like a pike strapped to the end of a short stick. This does not look good.

Welcome to my blog

Before I started collecting 6mm Napoleonics I took a look around the web for guides on painting them. I found a couple of blogs that had nice pictures ( and especially) but not much information on colours and step-by-step guides.

So I decided to make the blog that I wished I'd been able to find. Its quite possible that the target audience for this consists of only one person (me) but if that's the case I'll still have a reference when I forget how I did something. Hopefully though someone'll find this useful for ideas for their own miniatures.