Monday 28 December 2020

The Analogue Hobby Painting Challenge XI

 The below is my first entry in the Analogue Hobby Painting Challenge. I've copied the post from that blog here for your conviniance.

Hi, this is Sean from the God's Own Scale Podcast.

Below is my  first entry in to the Analogue Hobby Painting Challenge run by Curt Campbell. This coming year I intend to blog a bit more, mainly to catalogue all of my painting for 2021. The AHPC is a great place to start that, even though I wont count these figures as they were painted this year! To save my typing out the whole thing again I've copied most of my post here.

'Tis is my first year on the AHPC. I have followed it for many years but for some reason or other not got involved. Probably because I procrastinate far more than I paint. But also because my painting ability is fairly basic. Don't get me wrong - I'm happy with it but it's never going to win any prizes.

It will be no suprise that as the host of the third most popular historical wargaming podcast dedicated to 6mm miniatures, my first entry is...6mm miniatures. I am nearing the end of my Antietam project using the Altar of Freedom rules and the scenario therein. For the most part I have used Baccus Miniatures, though there are a few Rapier in there plus some Adler, mainly for the generals.

My plan for the next 3 months is to finish the Antietam project then look at my Charlie Don't Surf project using 10mm Pendraken figures. They remain in the cupboard, untouched since purchase over the summer. I have a company of U.S. grunts plus a company of VC for them to go up against.

I also have a couple of other projects in 6mm. Actually several. First of all are my First World War projects. I am using Great War Spearhead for these. Mons is up first. This is nearly done. Just buildings and scenery to finalise. Then it's onto my demonstration game for the Joy of Six 2021 show, on 4th July. I'm crossing everything that this show will go ahead. The game will be the GWSH scenario for the Thiepval sector of the first day of the Somme. I have nearly all of the figures purchased. I have several feet of latex trench from Timecast. And I have several ideas about how to build the table. 

Ontop of that I have plans for the beginnings of my foray into 6mm AWI. I have the Continental army for Guildford Court House using Rus de Guerre. Also I have figures for a planned 6mm Rorkes Drift.

...and I have a metric ton of 28mm Mantic Games figures. For the purposes of the challenge I have the figures for the Hellboy boardgame plus some for the Walking Dead. So lots to go at.

Anyway, here is my first entry into the #AHPCXI. The first picture is of the last untis for the Army of Northern Virginia for Antietam. I now have 36 Confederate brigades and 12 batteries plus 3 brigades of cavalry done. These figures were painted between 25/12/20 and 28/12/20.

The totals are:
 224 x 6mm infantry
 21 x 6mm cavalry

Total Points: 133 (300 target)

This is my General Thomas Jackson command stand. Mounted figures are from Adler. The standard bearer is from Rapier Minioatures.

An example of one of the infantry brigades. They are Law's brigade from Hood's division. They were made up of 2nd and 11th Mississippi, 4th Alabama  and 6th North Carolina. It suffered over 50% casualties at Antietam in fighting Hood's I Corps on the morning of 17th September. The unit here carries the Confederate battle flag. They are Baccus Miniatures. The fence is a resin print, kindly given to me by Aaron from Project Wargaming.

Another example pf one of my brigades. These are Hood's brigade, commanded by William Tatum Wofford from Hood's Divison. They carry the Texas flag as befitting a unit bearing Hood's name.

Okay, that's enough for now More soon. Play nice and keep talking about six!

Sunday 29 November 2020

It's Probably Time...

 ...for another blog entry.

Since the podcast launched again, I've taken my eye off the ball with regards to blogging. I use Twitter, Facebook and my podcast to discuss my hobby updates and feel like I may be repeating myself here. But, I am aware that not everyone uses all of those mediums and so may be wondering what on earth is going on in the world of God's Own Scale.

Well, a lot actually. Since April and First Lockdown (FL), I have had a large commission for 15mm Austrian Napoleonics which I made a sprint start on at the time. But with FL, and no club or face to face contact with gaming friends they wnet onto the back burner. But I did manage to crack on with them last week and finished them to the satisfaction of all concerned. 270 Lanchashire Games figures, now safely in the hnads of their proud owner. Both are doing fine.

So, with them out of the way it was time to get stuck into 'The Antietam Project' (TAP). Now this officially launched on 17th October 2020, although the figures were bought last year at Partizan. Ahhh. Shows. Remember them? Around 2.5kgs of 6mm goodness. 

This was another sprint start and to be honest it hasn't stopped! In a rather grown up fashion I sat in a coffee shop with notebook and pen and plotted out how to tackle around 2,500 figures. To allow myself some leeway I estimated I can paint for 2 sessions of 1 hour each per week. Any more than that would be seen as a bonus. I can paint a Union or Confederate infantry brigade in around 25-30 minutes so I was looking at getting around 112 figures done per week (28 figures to a brigade x 4).

With taking my shoes and socks off I was able to count high enough to suggest that I could be finished around early April. That seemed achievable with the added incentive that I could play some of the smaller battles along the way as the armies grew.

I may or may not have previousley mentioned that I am using Altar of Freedom by the most excellent Greg Wagman of Little Wars TV fame. The Antietam scenario in that rule book is what I am building towards. But First Bull Run, Shiloh and a couple of others would be wonderful waypoints for me to stop at and actually play some games.

However, Second Lockdown (SL) hit in early November meaning that face to face gaming in the UK is some way off. And now with the announcement of stricter Tiers once SL finishes, then it will remain thus in all likelihood until at least early February when Boris Johnson thinks we may be able to lift some restrictions.

When all is said and done, with COVID19 still here into early next year, there's no rush says I. Here is the remainder of the figures all blu tac'ed to lollipop sticks ready for spray undercoating.

So here we are, at the end of November. And I seem to have cranked through 1,644 figures leaving me to paint around 950. Not sure how it happened. I seemed to get on a role and just not stopped. There's an outside chance I may get all of the painting done by Christmas. Basing and flags will probably be left until the end and done in a couple of long sessions. The first tray is the Union and Confederate  beneath that. 

I may change my mind on this. I'm not sure yet. I want the basing to be as cohesive as possible. I'm just not that organised to make recipe notes of which paint, sand or flock I use normally and end up with bases that come out in all shades. Not a bad thing. Not all fields look alike, but I do want some kind of resemblance to each other for that consistent look that we see with the likes of Per Broden from Roll a One.

Whilst painting these ACW figures it has really rejuvenated my interest in the period. In particularly I'm fascinated by the Reconstruction period after the was and the rise of the 'Lost Cause' mentality. Neither of these subjects have been on my radar previousley and in fact in an early podcast I made reference to the 'Lost Cause' as an almost glamourous, melancholic concept. How foolish was I! 

Having read more around the subject, the 'Lost Cause' appears to be a far more sinister concept created by white supremacists to excuse and deny the principle aims of the Confederate government. One only has to read Vice President Alexander Stevens 'Cornerstone' speech to understand the slavery/states rights argument of the cuases of the war. Fascinating stuff.

I have a healthy list of podcast guests lined up, probably enough for the next 3-4 months worth of podcasts. I'm really enjoying the podcast at the moment. Time is the main limiting factor plus my internet connection isn't great. Hopefully this will improve at Christmas as we are treating oursleves to one of those WiFi signal boosters which I have seen good reports on.

Ok thats enough wittering on for now. Hopefully I can get to a more frequent posting schedule on here in the next few weeks.

As ever, keep safe, play nice and keep talking about six.

Monday 5 October 2020

Play Nice!

 In these troubled times of pandemics, political upheaval and social unrest, I think it's even more improtant that when we talk, play or communicate over social media, we try to be nice.

All of us can get caught up in the moment. If we see something we think is unjust, it can be a natural reaction to push back. But especially over the internet, meaning and intent can be lost. I've taken a step back from tweeting so much other than expressly on hobby matters. My ongoing motto, for my gaming and my podcast is simple, 'play nice'.

There was a recent thread where a complaint was made about the endless commercialisation of the hobby. So, a company that sells a basing kit comprising of 3 paints, a large bottle of wash, sand, static grass, PVA glue and instructions for just over £20, recieved criticism (and some support...) for over pricing the materials.

Now, my initial reaction was anger. The premise was that such a product would put someone off the hobby. My retort was that we don't point fingers at Mercedes for selling a car that is expensive because a new driver can't afford it. Also, any quick Google search will thow up loads of basing ideas for beginners through to hobby veterans. I choose to use the basing system because it gives quick, but more importantly excellent results.

Now I've had a love hate relationship with basing for as long as I can remember. But this basing system has given me a way of basing that I am very happy with. But why people feel the need to criticise a company for producing this product is beyond me. However, I have now said my piece. I am going to abide by the mantra of 'play nice' from now on. 

Hobby wise, our household is at the end of a period of decorating and shifting around. My hobby bunker has become the place to store anything that needs keeping out of the way, from wardrobes to boxes to bedding to curtains. So hobby time is limited, as is space. My hobby area has shrunk down to about a 2 foot square area on my table.

Still, I have now finished my Irregular Miniatures 6mm Crimean project for the Battle of the Alma. I say finished. I still need to build the battlefield, but more of that in another post. And, a project is of course never finished. After the Alma, it's onto Balaclava...and we all know what that means!

And here they are. Irregular Miniatures paint up lovely and more importantly for me quickly. Highly recommended.

More soon...

Saturday 22 August 2020

Catch Up

Gods Own Scale Patreon 

Well, things are ticking along quite nicely since the relaunch of the podcast. I'm over two months back in, I've doubled the number of episodes and now launched a Patreon to help keep the lights on!

I've stressed elsewhere that the existence of the podcast does not depend on Patreon , but every little bit helps!

My wargaming butterfly is in full flight at the moment. Having listed everything I own on Twitter, I'm rather embarrassed by the mass of 'stuff' I own. I'm constantly in a battle as to whether to sell off unused collections to help fund new projects, or just to let them lie and maybe give them the chance to shine once again at some point in the future. I've never been one to have any sentimental attachment to figures, but having sold collections previously, I do suffer with regret almost the moment they are out of my hands. 

I'll try and post some pictures up over the next few days of where I am with the 9 (NINE!) projects on the go. Some are close to done, some are yet to start. But they are my focus for the rest of this year. 

9 is really too many. Ideally I'd have 2 or 3 projects running alongside each other to maintain interest. Having 9 on the go runs the risk of burnout or just being overwhelmed. I'm going to try and be sensible and maybe look at dedicating a week to one thing at a time and seeing where that gets me.

Frustratingly, Blenhiem Blitz is nowhere on the horizon and not one of the 9. But, it will happen. Next year now. A long time ago on this blog I stated an interest in fighting some of the iconic battles of history.  Blenhiem falls into this category. But first...Antietam,  Mons, Thiepval, Guildford Courthouse, Rorkes Drift, Sacile, the Alma and Austerlitz!

More soon...

Monday 1 June 2020

Rumours of my demise.

...have been greatly exaggerated.

I could write about where I've been and what I've been doing. But, that would take too long, and not make happy reading.

Instead, I wanted to inform you that there are not one, but two new episodes incoming for God's Own Scale.

Firstly, an interview recorded with Robert Fellows of 2D6 Wargaming. This was recorded in November of last year and for a myriad of reasons I never got around to releasing it. My humble apologies to Robert. He gave up his time to speak to me and I repaid him with silence. Hopefully, finally releasing the cast will be good news for him.

The second podcast is being recorded on Sunday...and is the first episode with not one, but two guests. You'll know both of them, but I won't spoil who it is just yet. It's going to be great though!

I anticipate that I will aim for a slightly more leisurely release schedule for a while as I find my feet again. So bear with me. I still want this to be the best 6mm podcast out there. Ok...maybe the only one. But still.

More soon...

Wednesday 11 September 2019

Project Updates - Mons, Napoleonic Austrians and Antietam

I've been busy with podcast and painting activities, meaning little time for blogging. But, this blog is intended as a long term diary of thoughts and hobby progress so fear not dear readers!

Firstly, the podcast is going great guns. I am really pleased with how things are going and the amount of downloads suggests that there is a market for it! The next episode should be out tonight with an interview with Greg Wagman from Little Wars TV Suffice to say I really hope Greg returns to the podcast at some point - maybe with another member of the team who can extol the virtues of 6mm :-)

Hobby wise, I have now completed a division of British and a division of Germans for my Mons game using Great War Spearhead.

The first picture is before the 'Magic' is added. The 'Magic' is Windsor and Newton Nut Brown ink. It really is magic as you'll see. I am very much of the minimalist school of painting. Especially with 6mm, for me it's about getting enough done to let the viewer know what they are looking at, without fussing over every last belt and strap. These Germans have been sprayed with Halfords Grey primer then 5 colours added. Army Painter Leather Brown for the boots, pouches ans hair, Army Painter Fur Brown for the rifle, Army Painter Plate Mail for the rifle barrels, Army Painter Barbarian Flesh for the er....flesh and Army Painter Skeleton Bone for the helmets.

This picture shows the before and after the 'Magic' . Up close and personal it may look a bit rough, but at gaming distance (the 3 foot rule...) they look excellent!

The next three pictures are the whole division minus two infantry units I'd already done as a test for the scheme. Always useful to paint a unit or two up two nail down what colours go where. In 6mm, this can be literally half an hour or even less and is time well spent. I painted the rest of the divison in a long afternoon.

And for those who haven't seen it in the flesh, this is the wash (actually an ink) that I use. Per Broden from Roll a One and Dr Mike Salwey who runs the painting clinics at Joy of 6 and the Partizan shows were the original proponents of this ink. The magic refers to the way the ink runs into the creases and crevices of the 6mm figure leaving the principle colour practically unchanged. There is a slight darkening of the main colour, which is why you should always use a colour a shade lighter than you would for larger figures.

I'm not sure it works so well on larger figures and would sticj to Agrax or the Army Painter shades for anything larger. But this little jar really is 'Talent in a Jar' and is highly recommended. There are other shades such as Peat Brown which works but I would expoeriment and see what works for you.

In other news, I have painted up the first two regiments of Confederates for the Antietam game. I have painted Rebs in every scale going and for some reason love it! I think it's the freedom to use so many different uniform combinations, getting away from a 'uniform' look! The plan is to get them done by Christmas. This might be a bit optimistic. I am confident I'll get a game on before Christmas playing the Bull Run Altar of Freedom scenario as it's quite small in Altar of Freedom terms with only around a dozen bases per side. I'll update with progress as I go.

The Napoleonic Austrians are going well. No pictures yet, but I'm well on the way to having the Baccus army pack done, and have ordered extras to bolster them out to complete the order of battle for the Sacile scenario using Blucher. So, Grenzers, Jaegers, Grenadiers plus some infantry in helmets are on their way to me.

That'll do for now. Hopefully time for some more painting later. I'm also awaiting bases from Warbases for the Germans so I'm hoping the postman has a small package for me later.

As ever, play nice and keep talking about six.

Wednesday 14 August 2019

Robert Dunlop

Hugely interesting chat with Robert Dunlop tonight for the podcast.

Robert has done an awful lot to bring the Great War to life on the tabletop. His mega games at the Joy of Six are hugely inspirational. I heartily recommend that you head over without delay to his  Great War Spearhead website to check out the fantastic pictures of his games over the years.

As a taster check out this image of his recreation of the battle of the Somme from 2016.

Robert gives an insight in his inspiration, how he buids the games and how he paints and collects the thousands of figures he uses in his games.

The podcast episode should be up early next week.