Monday, 31 December 2012

Last Post of the year and some Masai

Just a final picture of the year of my first unit of 10 Masai, complete besides adding a bit of grass to the bases.

I was hoping to attach a picture of my new 12 man Mahdist horse but I still have 4 riders to finish so hopefully next month.
For 2012 of the 105 figures I painted 41 were colonial so a reasonable percentage given my low output this year. Of the 105, 46 were painted in the last 3 months so the beginning of the year had been very slow.

My intention for 2013 is to paint up the last 40-50 Mahdist foot I have including the perry plastics set which should give me enough figures to run a fairly big battle and add the option of buying some Egyptians to support my Brits. Of course I also want to finish the Masai so a lot to do.

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Zanzibar Slavers.

Faraj Al-Dosari and his foul slaver followers.

Maarouf Alzeshi and Faraj Al-Dosari (with pet monkey Bashir)
The "Butcher of Murogo", Falakee Al-Fayyoumi and men.

Figures are Foundry.

Saturday, 10 November 2012

British Askari.

A unit of British Askari ready to join the Hon. Cecil Cathcart Marchbanks on his new expedition.

Sergeant Baako presents his troops.
Figures are Foundry.

Saturday, 3 November 2012

The European Explorers.

The European adventurers and explorers finally set foot on African soil...

Captain Thomas Henry Abel and his guide Kimani.
Mbasogo, Sir Archibald Dreaton and renowned hunter Merle Caspar.
Major Sir Cornelius Hedney and assistants.
Dutch guides Klaus Voorheim and Piotr Witzenfeld. 
 Figures are Foundry.

Next - British Askari.

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Tiger Miniatures and more Germans

Finished painting up some Askari with a field gun bought 2 or 3 years ago at the woolwich show. The figures are Tiger Miniatures which are better in the flesh than their website gives them credit. The range for colonial purposes is mainly limited to WW1 era German troopers but I am tempted to buy some more when and if I ever decide to expand into WW1 in Africa. Of particular interest is the Askari mule train as you can never have too much baggage.

The askari mountain gun and 3 crew that I have painted up very easily. I tried to match a colour that Mark has on a section of Askari he bought. My final choice was GW Desert Yellow washed with Devlin mud and highlighted up with Desert Yellow. A quick painjob but very effective. Just need to finish the gun.

Some good historic pictures of geman askari here.

As Mark has just posted his German, here are mine

The Red Skull converted from a Belgian and a GW plastic skeleton head.

His Venusian servant carrying the imperial colours (an old Rafm Cast, I would like more of these if still available)

Copplestone Officers

German Askari bring home slaves for the Skull

German Askari forward to war.

The Germans.

Baron Torsten Holzmann leads his expeditionary force into the darkest realms of Africa...

Kapitan Herwig Becker, Baron Holzmann, Dr. Otto Rieflin and  Herr Eckehard Friedrich.
Marine leader Leutnant Rudi Wolff.
Wolff and his Marines assemble.
Herr Friedrich leads the Marines with Leutnant Wolff.
The Germans assess their recent ivory acquisitions.
A good days work!

Figures are Copplestone.

Next - More Europeans.

Sunday, 21 October 2012

The Natives.

A quick update of the progress on the natives.

Here we have Chief Mwenye and his family.

Chief Mwenye and his family in front of "The Tribute of Oluchi".

Next we have his eldest sons Tawanda and Timane assembling their war parties



Figures are Foundry.

Next up - Europeans.

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Darkest Africa - Planning the Expedition 2.

Following on from the post by ZM and his 'stocktake' I thought I would add where I am up to now...

I have now finished all the bases on my Darkest Africa figures! I also re-attached several erroneous native shields and spears and touched up a little bit on some with minor chips but got too dark to pick it all up so will try to do more over the week. I still have about 30 unpainted European types but I think we have plenty enough to be getting on with already! I also have a handful of bearers and African villagers to work on.

So, my latest DA stock take is -


Askari x53
Europeans x20
Native bearers x4
African villagers x7
African warriors x39 (well, 15 of which are in progress)
Zanzibar Slavers x10
(British Redcoats x56 - Zulu War British that could be used at a pinch?)

Unpainted / in progress:

Askari x11 (based and undercoated)
Zulu (as tribesmen) x36
Europeans x30 (based ready for undercoat)
British Redcoats x20
Lions x3 (have based ready for undercoat)
African Villagers x7
German Marines x10 (getting there!)
German Officers x4 (almost done)

Almost finished two African cattle. Also painted up a nice 'tower of skulls' and picked up various boxes and crates etc for the explorers. 3 Renedra tents to do plus whatever generic terrain I pick up.

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Darkest Africa - Planning the Expedition 1.

My intention is to get a few more figures painted and run the Darkest Africa campaign as published in Wargames Illustrated.

A quick count revealed:-

Zanzibari, including canon 34

Explorers 30

Askari 24

Sikhs 10

Bearers 7

Pack Donkeys 2

Belgian Officers 9

Belgian Askari 4

German Officers 5

German Askari 10

Slaves 4

Wichdoctors 2

The Red Skull 1

Lizardman (with German flag) 1

Masai 5

Total 148

A couple of VSF figures thrown in there but quite a good start and I probably have a similar number bought and ready to paint.

A Belgian Adventure?

The famed Belgian adventurer and explorer Igor "Cannibal" Dumont de Chassart and his Askari guard.

'Cannibal' Chassart.

His personal assistant Lunedechaddy brings the chilled (of course) Wallonian wine. His bodyguard, Junior Yohan (in the headwrap) stands dutifully in the back.

Askari guard.

Figures are Foundry.

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Tarzan and Family.

Tarzan and family by North Star Miniatures. The second Tarzen I have painted the last one being the made by foundry, and yes there are two Chetah models.

Friday, 10 August 2012

Lady Katherine - Into the Heart of Africa.

Count Leopold Arnauld d'Ansembourg, Lady Katherine Hazel and Major Tibor Hamilton-Parker prepare to lead their party into the heart of Darkest Africa...

The Count, The Lady and The Soldier...

The Europeans and their loyal Askari bodyguard.

Figures are Copplestone and Foundry.

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Workbench Update.

Another quick update.

Bases coming along...

The Hon. Cecil Cathcart Marchbanks (as a young man) flanked by Quincy McBride (from the US) and his loyal Sikh bodyguard Sgt. Uttamjodh.

The Hon. Cecil Cathcart Marchbanks.

All figures are Foundry.

Monday, 23 July 2012

Simon Ward - RIP.

I was very sad to hear of the passing of a great actor and a true favourite of mine, Simon Ward, who died after a long illness at the age of 70.

As Ward appeared in a few films / plays worthy of mention up in a 'Colonial Africa' blog I thought it seemed appropriate.

First up is "Young Winston" -

Ward as Winston Churchill.

Young Winston is a 1972 British film based on the early years of British Prime Minister Winston Churchill.

The film was based on the book My Early Life: A Roving Commission by Winston Churchill. The first part of the film covers Churchill's unhappy schooldays, up to the death of his father. The second half covers his service as a cavalry officer in India and the Sudan, during which he takes part in the cavalry charge at Omdurman, his experiences as a war correspondent in the Second Boer War, during which he is captured and escapes, and his election to Parliament at the age of 26.

Churchill was played by Simon Ward, who was relatively unknown at the time but was supported by a distinguished cast including; Robert Shaw (as Lord Randolph Churchill), John Mills (as Lord Kitchener), Anthony Hopkins (as David Lloyd George) and Anne Bancroft as Churchill's mother Jennie. Other actors included Patrick Magee, Robert Hardy, Ian Holm, Edward Woodward and Jack Hawkins.

The film was written and produced by Carl Foreman and directed by Richard Attenborough. It was nominated for Academy Awards for Best Screenplay, Best Art Direction (Donald M. Ashton, Geoffrey Drake, John Graysmark, William Hutchinson, Peter James) and Best Costume Design

"The Four Feathers" -

As William Trench.

The Four Feathers is a 1977 British television film adaptation of the classic novel The Four Feathers by novelist A.E.W. Mason. Directed by Don Sharp, this version starred Beau Bridges, Robert Powell,Simon Ward and Jane Seymour, and was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award. It follows the novel almost exactly, and response to the film was very positive.

Lieutenant Harry Faversham (Beau Bridges) realises his regiment is being deployed to the Sudan where they would see combat. He promptly resigns his officer's commission, stating that he did not wish to leave his fiancé, Ethne (Seymour). In reality, he was questioning the cause, and was fearful of seeing combat. Following his resignation, his fiancé and three friends present him with white feathers, representing cowardice, and turn their backs on him. Following his regiments deployment, Faversham realizes he has made a grave mistake, and that he will never be able to live any quality of life unless his honour is restored.

Disguising himself as an Arab, Faversham makes his way to Sudan determined to find his unit. He learns of an impending attack on the regiment, and tries to make it in time to save them. During the battle, his closest friend Captain Jack Durrance (Powell) becomes engaged in close combat, during which he is blinded when a black powder rifle goes off next to his face. Faversham attacks the Arabs who surround Durrance, and rescues him as he staggers blindly. In the end, Faversham is able to help his regiment, and redeem his honour.

"The Rear Column" -

As Herbert Ward.

The Rear Column is a play by Simon Gray set in the jungle of the Congo Free State in 1887-88. The story begins after explorer Henry Morton Stanley, has gone to relieve Emin Pasha, governor of Equatoria, from a siege by Mahdist forces. He leaves behind him a 'rear column' with supplies at the Yambuya camp on the Aruwimi River and instructs them to wait until the Arab slave trader, Tippu Tib, has brought 600 more porters before following on to Equatoria. The play follows the story of the men left waiting in the camp. The officers depicted in the play are based on historical figures.

The play was first produced in London's West End in 1978 at the Globe Theatre in London, now known as the Gielgud Theatre.

Finally, the cherry on the cake...

"Zulu Dawn" -

At Lt. Hon Standish William Prendergast Vereker.

Zulu Dawn, a 1979 film is about the historical Battle of Isandlwana between British and Zulu forces in 1879 in South Africa. The screenplay was by Cy Endfield, from his book, and Anthony Story. The film was directed by Douglas Hickox. The score was composed by Elmer Bernstein.

This was the my first introduction to the Anglo-Zulu war and film that remains with me an all time favourite. Okay, so it may not be the most historically accurate but what films are!

RIP - Simon Ward.

Read the Guardian Obituary.