Tuesday, October 15, 2019

HMS Inflexible

1:300 Scale - HMS Inflexible, Lake Champlain - 1776

I enjoyed building the Enterprise so much that I decided to take another ship in the same scale.  War Artisan's Workshop sells a whole fleet of ships that took part in the Battle of Valcour Island.  Each printable ship kit is currently available for $5.00.  I took the plunge and decided to tackle the largest of the British vessels that took part in the battle, the HMS Inflexible.

Inflexible with a U.S. Quarter for scale.
The Inflexible was a 180 ton, 80' long three-masted ship armed with eighteen 12 pound guns.  What amazes me is that she was not built on Lake Champlain, where she fought.  Instead, she was built in Quebec City, then moved in pieces to St. Johns, where she was reassembled and launched.

The Continental Sloop-of-War Enterprise tries to outrun the British.
The photo above gives some idea what the Continental Navy on Lake Champlain faced during the fight for control of Lake Champlain n 1776.  The Enterprise was one of the American's larger ships (a few were a couple of feet longer).

Completed Hull next to the finished Enterprise.

Constructing the hull of the ship was pretty straight forward.  The pieces were printed, folded, glued, and in my case, painted due to low ink on my printer.  I decided to use toothpick bits for cannon this time around, which looked a little large, but from a distance give the impression of a well-armed vessel.

Building one of the masts.

Building the masts and sails was also fairly simple.  The instructions that come with the kit list the sizes of the pieces you need, and each it cut from readily available material.  In this case, I used floral wire, toothpicks, and a bamboo skewer.  Rigging is black thread that's been run through some PVA glue and allowed to dry.

Bow Spirit, Main Mast, and Mizzen Mast in place.

Rigging the Inflexible was the most difficult part of this build.  First, there's a lot of lines!  Next, my thread wasn't really cooperating.  Third, my glue wasn't drying fast enough to keep things in place.  Overall, it took me about a week to complete the rigging, and I'm still not happy with it.  It's loose in places, but really, from a distance, it doesn't look too bad.

So, another build complete.  I'm really enjoying these tiny ships.  I think I'm going to purchase another one soon.

HMS Inflexible, port side.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Colonial Townsfolk

Perry Miniatures Civilians
The second round of the Lead Painter's League has ended.  My entry, a group of civilians from Perry Miniatures was paired up against some fantasy type figures.  My opponent won the round, dropping me from 19th to 21st place overall, but I'm still really happy with these figures.

I'm especially happy with how the well-dressed lady turned out.  I struggled a bit with what color to make her petticoat, but the shading on her overall gown came out well.  I need to practice shading some more, but this one felt nice to paint. 

The Benjamin Franklin looking gentleman I'm also happy with, though there are some improvements I would have made had I had more time to work.  I dabbed his face a bit at the end, and the slight blue highlight on his hat turned out lighter than I would of liked.  His base also needs some touch up, as some of the basing materiel came off as I was photographing.

The lady with the basket I tried to make a little more dirty and run down.  The biggest struggle was painting the baby on her back.  I don't know if it was the sculpt, or my painting, but he still sort of looks more gremlin-like and baby-like.

The fellow carrying the barrel suffers from the same basing and highlighting problem as the Franklin fig, but I was happy how his breeches turned out.  I tried highlighting with a darker color as opposed to using a wash on this one.

Finally there's the broom woman.  I'm not happy with her face, but her jacket, especially the back, turned out well.

On to Round 3 this week!

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Australian Jungle Infantry

Australian Jungle Infantry in New Guinea
Voting has ended for the first round of the Lead Painters' League, so I can finally reveal my first steps into painting miniatures for World War II.  These ten figures represent a section of of the Australian Jungle Division, organized in 1943 to fight in the southwest Pacific.

The figures are from Warlord Games Bolt Action range and, honestly, I chose them because I really liked their hats.  Never having worked with Warlord Games figures before, I was really impressed at how well they were sculpted and molded.  These really were a lot of fun to paint.

Being my first time taking part in the Lead Painters' League, I find myself seriously outclassed by more experienced painters, however, after one round, I'm currently ranked 19th out of 24 contestants.  Given that I had to give up 10 points for not meeting the first round's theme (the gothic figures that I ordered never arrived), I'm pretty happy with my standing.  Had I been able to meet the theme, I'd be somewhere near the low middle, which I feel is a respectable placement for someone painting to a tabletop level.