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Thread: By our Lady, for the King!

  1. #1
    Chapter Master Hadriel Caine's Avatar
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    By our Lady, for the King!

    Bow your knees.
    Arise my knights o' th' battle. I create you
    Companions to our person, and will fit you
    With dignities becoming your estates.

    Cymbeline, Act V Sc 5

    Welcome to my latest project.

    I am in a lovely position of having almost finished my 2.4/5k WoC army. I've got a chariot to go and am re-doing my marauder horsemen. But they're essentially done. With the completion of my Deathwing as well I now have a fuly painted, playable army in each system. This allows me to attend tournaments when I fancy it. I have also come close to finishing a large WoC commission army- 5 knights and a Juggernought Lord/Hero to go.

    So I decided I needed a painting project.

    Earlier in the year I participated in various things that drew me to the middle ages and also to Arthurian Legend and a Song of Ice and Fire. I worked on a rehearsed reading of the play The Birth of Merlin and my girlfriend started reading Chaucer for her course. Warseerite Salarath has lent me a series of modern Arthurian novels and I watched a bunch of movies about the crusades (also my research topic for A level history many years ago).

    In an artistic and painting sense I wanted a challenge- whilst I like my WoC the plan was to use a limited, dark palette and do lots of conversions. The painting is good but I think I can do better- certainly my brush control and paint application has improved drastically since the beginning of 2013 having completed two commission armies as well as my own WoC, about 7000 points in total.

    Therefore I've decided to try my hand at Bretonnia.

    I've been very fortunate to get hold of some brilliant classic metal miniatures and a lot of 5th edition plastic knights for very little money and some love from eBay and other hobbyists.

    As it stands I've got almost 40 Knights, 40 Men at arms, 30 archers, a damsel, the green knight, the robin hood warband and some pegasus knights. Not to mention the army book. I think I've spent less than 100 too!

    I am keen to run a unit of 20 archers, a big block of men at arms (possibly 50) and two units of yeomen. I also want at least one unit of pegasus knights and a pegasus mounted paladin. I think two trebuchets, two units of errants and some characters should round that out nicely to 2.4 or 2.5k. I shall write a list or two over the weekend but I couldn't resist making a start on the peasants at my disposal:



    The major departure for me here is will be the bright colours and the use of a light undercoat. I want this army to shine. I may then bloody/muddy it up a bit but shiny, glorious knights are the aim. You may be interested in the bases. I have made these very simply using milliput, it was going to be 10 for 10 infantry bases if I bought them in a story pre-cobbled. Much more satisfying to make your own anyway...



    I've also built up my first 5 mounted yeomen using some spare pistolier horses. The legs are sculpted over Dark Elf Cold One Knight legs with the addition of the boots from marauder horsemen (which I had lying around as my horsemen are going to be centaurs!)






    For the peasants I want to convey a certain middle ages grittiness. I don't want them to be to comic or too downtrodden, but certainly hardened and darker than the paragons they march alongside. To this end The unit fillers will likely continue the theme of the gibbet tree. I want to track down the stocks part from the Flagellents for a man at arms and have made an executioner for the Men at arms unit using the greatsword from the empire state troops and a bit of resculpting. He'll be painted in black.

    That's all for now. Expect heraldry and backstory in the new year and a list as soon as possible. In the mean time I shall do a test man at arms, archer and maybe the yeomen.

    I'm really excited for this project as its an army that's intrigued me since 5th edition came out and I hope to do it justice now. All criticism and comments are welcomed as the plan here is to improve my painting again and be very attentive to detail.

    Thanks for bearing with this rambling opening post.

    A.

  2. #2
    Modinator Lord Dan's Avatar
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Well, this is exciting! I'm a huge fan of Brets (which is ironic, because I don't actually play them) and I'm excited to see where your renown flair for conversions takes this project. The peasants all look great so far. The Yeoman conversions are ace, and I'm particularly impressed by how well you matched up the new plastic and old metal Men-at-Arms.

  3. #3
    Chapter Master EmperorNorton's Avatar
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Wow, the mounted Yeomen are fantastic!
    This project looks awesome already and I can't wait to see more.
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  4. #4
    Brother Sergeant Swaelg's Avatar
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    I like the infantry - they are cohesive force but they are not boring. The cavalry also looks good. One remark would be regarding the lone mounted archer - his right arm looks too short.

  5. #5
    Chapter Master Hadriel Caine's Avatar
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    There met our armies in their proud array:
    Both furnished well, both full of hope and fear,
    Both menacing alike with daring shows,
    Both vaunting sundry colors of device,
    Both cheerly sounding trumpets, drums, and fifes,
    Both raising dreadful clamors to the sky...

    The Spanish Tragedy, Act I Sc 2




    I made a start on my compulsory Paladin BSB this afternoon. I used the Green Knight's horse and legs with a peasant torso and the head from an empire greatsword. I added a dragon shield from the VC zombie dragon kit as it seemed a suitable heraldic device for a high ranking knight as this, with the honour of flying the standard. I blended the robes from the green knight's legs into the torso with GS and the banner pole is from the warriors of chaos box as the glove matches (almost- I had to remove a skull) the glove on the shield arm. I then sculpted a fleur-de-lis on the horse's shaffron (head armour). The head itself is the command one from the Empire knights. I then echoed the armour plating from the neck of the model down the length of the green knight's horse as well. This covered the gap from the metal casting and ties the model together as a composition better than looking like pieces from separate kits... in theory.

    I've made a start on building the banner itself but the GS is curing and it looks a mess. I will trim and file it later.

    I also knocked together this chap for the Men at Arms unit:





    Salarath came over yesterday and we built his Ironguts using a bunch of spares from my Dragon ogres and other bits. He kindly donated the battered Bretonnian shields from the Ironguts shoulder armour and there was a gnoblar on my desk this morning. I decided that a halfling jester would be a fun piece to add to my peasants so he gained a pseudo hobby horse (horse cut from a pegasus knight's helmet) and a tippet(?) which is, I think the correct word for a medieval shoulder covering/ the lower part of a hood. I also covered up some of the ripped sacks of plunder on his back with a damaged shield. I figured that if a knight's shield were so damaged he might discard it, but a diminutive man at arms would welcome a bit of free protection- even if he had to do some crude running repairs.

    Thanks for the positive responses so far. I'm excited about this project and am trying to toe the line between planning everything in advance and allowing inspiration for conversions to take me as I go. Luckily I have a surplus of most of the core of the army so I can experiment a bit.

    @Lord Dan- I think one of the lovely things about Bretonnians is that the peasants are intentionally rag tag. This allows me to use old and new models which, with a bit of work and cohesive painting and basing gives a lot of character to an otherwise static unit. I was really lucky to get some of the rarer metal Bretonnians in an eBay job lot for relatively little money which inspired me to have a tinker with the rank and file too.

    @EmperorNorton- I'm glad you like the Yeomen- I'm really happy with them and will probably do a second unit.

    @Swaelg- I can see what you mean about the arm... but I think actually I made the legs too long rather than the arm too short if that makes sense. The proportions are slightly off average across the whole unit. Mostly due to laziness when sculpting the legs it has to be said. Also the horses are MASSIVE for the pistoliers which throws the proportions off even more. I'm glad you like the infantry so much. They seem to be a hit! I think the kits are some of the best GW make and its a shame people play them less. Maybe with a new book that will change.

    More very soon!

    A.

  6. #6
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    you NEED to get The Winter King read before continuing with this excellent blog. Nice gnobbled peasant

  7. #7
    Scout Thornshield's Avatar
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Always in awe of your conversions, keep it up mate. Looking forward to seeing it on a table across me in the new year.

  8. #8
    Chapter Master Hadriel Caine's Avatar
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    The royal banner, and all quality,
    Pride, pomp and circumstance of glorious war!

    Othello, Act III, Sc 3

    I spent an hour or so this evening painting the BSB's banner.
    I had started with the ogre bulls standard and spent yesterday evening repairing it:


    I primed it alongside some more infantry:


    I then made a start on the standard itself. I used strong and soft tone from Army Painter and some Indian ink to block out the image based on this famous piece of art of the Lady of the Lake.


    Having blocked out the design I started to add colour using glazes, such as Lamenters Yellow, before adding detail with stronger colours. I used Hawk Turkoise and Averland Sunset.


    Which eventually looked like this:


    And then I fixed her nose after some advice:


    If you want any more detailed explanation please don't hesitate to ask. I'm now making a start on the paladin himself.

    @Salarath- I'll make a start on the books over the Xmas break.
    @Thornshield- I'm honoured to have your first post mate. Too long a lurker? Really enjoyed our game the other day. I demand a rematch though!

    More soon

    A.

  9. #9
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Jesus on a bicycle, that banner is insane.

  10. #10
    Modinator Lord Dan's Avatar
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Simply stunning. Your use of color and the inclusion of those nifty swirls really makes this banner pop. My only recommendation would be to add a halo of light behind her head to brighten up that area more, similar to what you see in some late medieval illustrations representing Christ, angels, saints, etc. For example, this naked man:

    http://www.britishmuseum.org/collect...6511_001_l.jpg

    This would help draw the eye to the center, as currently I find myself looking to the striped pattern to her left.

    Either way, amazing work.

  11. #11
    Chapter Master Hadriel Caine's Avatar
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Thanks very much gents.

    @Lord Dan- The thought struck me earlier that I would like a sunburst or a halo behind her head to emphasize the focal point. I completely forgot whilst sweating blood over painting her face. I will go back and add in a halo as you suggest at some point tomorrow. Would you advise doing it similarly to the source image or just a single band around her head?

    For now here is the finished BSB (and first miniature in the army!) Draque de Bastonne.






    and just for my reference I used these paints to do the basing:


    The leaves and debris were done by stippling Rhinox hide and bestial brown then painting some individual leaves with death world green. The leaves themselves are simply oregano superglued onto the base with some basing sand. The edge of the base was done in Rhinox hide and will need another coat. N.B. paints are not having the best time adhering to white undercoat...

    More tomorrow.

    A.

  12. #12
    Modinator Lord Dan's Avatar
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    With the use of bright yellows and pure white around her I think it would be difficult for a band around her head to stand out much. As such, I think a bright glow around her head would probably be best. I would even go further than the image I linked and blend it to where you're not looking at a literal halo but more of a glow around the head.

    The finished BSB himself is just awesome. I love how you incorporated the leather/quilted men-at-arm armor on him, as it gives the model a very rugged, mercenary look to him.

  13. #13
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Very awesome Freehand on the standard. The rock (from the Ogre banner) seems a little out of place on it though. Even if it is a "sacred rock" or something like that the Bretonnians decided to lug around.

    Also - much kudos to the gnoblar to Jester conversion. Looking forward to seeing that one painted up eventually.
    My Freebooter's Fate log
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  14. #14
    Chapter Master Hadriel Caine's Avatar
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Right. I've had a brief sleep and got back to painting. Following the advice of Lord Dan, Thornshield (via Whatsapp) and various members of Angel Wargamers I've made some amendments to the BSB

    1) Halo/ glow around the head of the Lady of the Lake on the banner- I think this looks much better and reinforces the focal point, thanks Lord Dan.


    2) Added one further highlight to the reins, the patterns on the reds and added one more wash to the recesses. The photos have still not caught the light well but there is much more depth to the reds, also I lightened the plume so that it pulls less focus from the Paladin.

    3) I darkened the back of the banner, in theory this should frame the rider better and be ignored by most viewers. I also re-edged the base as my sweaty mitts had rubbed some of the paint off.


    Finally I've made a start on this classic Musician:




    -------------------

    @Schmapdi- I see your point but I had assumed it would look like a sacred stone or something. I'm trying to introduce a couple more visual parallels between the peasants and the knights so a few details like that and the interspersal of some of the Men at Arms torsos into the knights unit is intentional. I should come up with a particular fluff reason for the stone though. I imagine it represents a talisman or something but I haven't written my list yet...

    @Lord Dan- Hope you like the ammendments. Also I'm very glad you like the use of the Man at Arms torso. I got the idea months ago whilst watching Game of Thrones and wishing I had northern knights. I'm looking forward to painting the yeomen too. Amazingly nice models the men at arms. Simple to assemble. Not cluttered and actually infantry that fits the 28mm scale... looking at you orcs, WoC, beasts, deamons etc ad infinitum...

    I need to sort the flat out before I head home for Christmas tomorrow so any updates will be much later on.

    A.

  15. #15
    Chaplain
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Great paint job! I took a quick glance at this thread and immediately became a fan. Looking forward to see whole units with unit fillers!

    Thanks for the wip pics of the banner.

  16. #16
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Could the stone not be a part of the Arthurian Stone, aka 'sword in the....'

  17. #17
    Modinator Lord Dan's Avatar
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Perfection.

  18. #18
    Commander Hellbrandt Grimm's Avatar
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Realy nice log, I think I'll steal you the "gnoblar" idea for a Mordheim warband

    Keep up the the god job mate !!

    HG

  19. #19
    Chapter Master Ludaman's Avatar
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Wow, this log just escalated to pure awesomeness very quickly!

  20. #20
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    Re: By our Lady, for the King!

    Wow, you are a really good painter! I'm really hoping to see some more knights soon!

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