Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Zouaves (or are they Moroccans?)


The dreadful weather over the bank holiday weekend at least gave me the chance to finish off some figures which had been on the painting table for some time.



First up, the small detachment of Zouaves, which could easily double as Tirailleurs Marocains. These were basically “left over” 28mm figures from Brigade Games when I was painting up the mainstream Metropolitan French infantry for the Verdun games earlier this year. I had bought some Woodbine Design Company Zouave heads a while ago, and it seemed like a perfect chance to swap out the Adrien helmets for something more exotic and characterful.




I can’t believe it was almost a year since I made these figures up – my blog post on these figures is way back in October 2013. I also cannot believe it has taken me so long to realise how much fun these conversions would be to paint. If I had known how much fun the Zouave chéchias would be to paint, I'd have painted them a long while back.

The Woodbine heads are an absolutely perfect fit for the scale of the Brigade Games figures. While the removal of the Adrien helmets is slightly tricky (using a very fine jeweller’s saw), once the Zouave heads are on, the painting is a real pleasure. And swapping heads opens up a world of possibilities, especially for the lovely Brigade Games late French figures with their accurate field packs and equipment.

Here’s some images from the work in progress, and the final painted figures.







And that's just the beginning for the late summer project of l'Armée d'Afrique and l'Armée Coloniale.

 All being well, in future posts there will be some Legion Etranger and some of my favourite French army troops of the period, the Tirailleurs Sénégalaise.  And its on the latter, the West African troops of the French army, that I'd like to spend a few blog posts, exploring some of the remarkable background, myths and battles of these soldiers, as well as painting up some of the converted figures I've been collecting.  It's been a while getting here - so thanks for your patience so far.  I can (cautiously) promise that you will enjoy what's coming!

67 comments:

  1. These are fantastic as always. I hope to see some more scenarios come out based on the Tirailleurs Sénégalaise once you have painted some more up.

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    1. Thanks Chris. I'm working on a couple of scenarios on the Tirailleurs Sénégalais and hope to add them to a French scenario pack later in the year.

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  2. Beautiful troops, splendid colors and bases, and so many details...excellent work!

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  3. Very nice brush work, as usual from señor Roundwood

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    1. Benito, thanks for dropping by and for your kind words!

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  4. God bless Woodbine Heads! Great looking unit. Lovely paintjob. Seems you take a bit more care than I do when involved in "Cranial Creativity". I hack the heads of with a pain of snips!

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    1. Mark! Thanks so much! The Woodbine heads have been wonderful. I saw the existing head off first and hen greenstuff the collar, which almost takes as long as painting the figure itself!

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  5. Your paintjobs and eye for detail blow me away as usual and I can't wait to see more! Was wondering if you've considered paint any Chasseur Alpins like the ones from Askari and Forgotten and Glorious

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    1. Thanks Will! I have indeed considered the Chasseur Alpins, but I've not yet taken the plunge with them. Brigade Models do some nice "Blue Devils" as well. They may well be on the list for next year!

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  6. They are absolutely wonderful! Those red fez'es really click with the French sky blue uniforms and your high contrast basing style frames the minis excellently. Talking about Tirailleurs Sénégalaise, are you familiar with the French company "Forgotten & Glorious Miniatures"? They do some amazing ones with different head options!

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    1. Thanks so much! I've more on the "Forgotten & Glorious Miniatures" in the next post, so stay tuned!

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  7. Most splendid and well worth the wait, looking forward to the batch.

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  8. Excellent painted and converted figures Sidney!

    Greetings
    Peter

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  9. Superbly painted and based, as always. Very impressive!

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  10. Fabulous stuff as we all came to expect from you! It's amazing how much a simple head swap can change the look of a figure.

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    1. Thanks! Changing the heads has given me a way of adding variety to figures I like, and keep the same equipment theme in the army. It's more work, but hopefully will give the whole force more consistency. Well, that's the plan, anyway!

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  11. These are great, will they be coming to a wargames show?

    Ian

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    1. Thanks Ian! Very good question Sir. They will definitely be appearing here on the blog in a few games at the local St Albans club. I've no plans yet for them to be travelling away from home, but I'd certainly consider it. Maybe at a future Blog-Con?

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  12. Beautiful work Sid. Your choice of figures and palettes always finds some colour amidst the muck of the western front, which makes them all the more poignant, to my mind. Very fine.
    Looking forward to more of this project.
    Best,
    Michael

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    1. Thanks Michael. That's very kind. I freely confess (and feel slightly guilty about it) that these figures are a long way from the horror and terrible casualties of the Zouaves in the Great War. But they are one of the quintessential French units, and they were as irresistible on the painting table and they might (or might not) be on the wargames table!

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  13. Excellent work once again. Very nice conversions.

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  14. Splendid brushwork! The French army in the 19th century is one of my favorites. I look forward to your series on other noteworthy French units.

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  15. They are very pretty, look forward to seeing the stuff in the pipeline too.

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  16. VERY nice! Like everyone else, I'm looking forward to the rest of the units, especially the Senegalese.

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    1. Gary, just hoping you enjoy what's coming!

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  17. Zouaves or Moroccans, they're absolutely wonderful mate.

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  18. A superb dash of colour for the table-top.

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    1. That's very kind! Thank you, and great to see you here again!

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  19. My word Sidney! They're spiffing.
    Look forward to seeing more.
    Cheerio
    Matt

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  20. Fabulous work on these Sid - those head swaps are brilliant. I can't wait to see more of the upcoming colonials.

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    1. Well, the (evolving) plan is for a L'Armee d'Afrique force on the tabletop consisting of the Zouaves, Legion Etranger and Tirailleurs Sénégalaise. I'm not sure exactly whether that's very realistic (and quite possibly it isn't), but it will hopefully look good, and be huge fun to play with. It does mean a lot of head swaps....my fingers are complaining just thinking about it

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  21. Nice work on the conversions and the painting!

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  22. Superb conversions and paint job, certainly well worth the wait. ;)

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    1. Very high praise from you, Michael! Thanks so much!

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  23. Lovely conversions! Metallics look very good, too.

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    1. Thanks Simon. I've been tweaking the metals "recipe" slightly. I'll add it to the painting charts in due course. But for now:

      - the base is a 50/50 mix of Vallejo Model Colour Black/ Vallejo Game Colour Gunmetal;
      - a mid-tone of Vallejo Game Colour Gunmetal with a dab of Vallejo Model Colour Black; and
      - a highlight of Vallejo Model Colour Oily Steel.

      This seems to work a bit more dramatically than what I was using before.

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  24. They look great, I love your vibrant colours.

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  25. Sidney, I can't seem to find your email address anywhere. Could you drop me a line?

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    1. Conrad! Email dropped to your address. Hope you're well, and I'll be in touch soonest, Sir!

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  26. Really lovely pieces indeed!

    Great painting and a lovely matt finish too- very important IMHO.

    Congrats.....

    Darrell.

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    1. Darrell, always a great pleasure seeing you here. Thank you so much!

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