I’ve got a few more elements finished, and a number more very close to being finished. The first is the Command Wagon of my Communal Italian army (III/73a) that is taking shape. It is a morph of my Norman army, though I’m yet to paint most of it — the six elements of communal spearmen, the two elements of communal crossbowmen and the two elements of Contandini infantry (hordes). I’m actually planning to take a Medieval German ally (IV/13a), which allows more knights (3Kn/4Bd), and another element of crossbowmen. These are all started. I made the transfers for the Carroccio’s banner and the shields myself. I was following the picture in Ian Heath’s Armies of Feudal Europe (no. 94 on p. 111). I noted that some of cities (Bologna and Parma) had red banners and a cross on them. I somehow took from this a yellow cross, though when I reread the book I discovered that it should have been white.

The Communal Italian Carroccio.

Like the rest of the army, this is an Essex model. I chose to keep it to a 40 x 40 base, so I’ve not used the oxen. After I decided on this, I saw a very nice Carroccio with oxen. One advantage of the 40 x 40 base is that I can present the wagon side on.

Another angle.

The model came with a single monk (the one holding the crucifix), but I came across a few more while I was painting it, and decided to fill out the wagon a bit. These monks have picked up some dirty habits, courtesy of refreshing the ink in my wash just before doing them! They’re not just there to add moral support either; that monk in the middle is kneeling. If he stands up he’s a monster (a Museum miniature) … Beppo abandoned his questionable early life as a wrestler for a life of prayer, but should the wagon be under serious threat, he may revert to his old character, so watch out!

And another.

The wagon is guarded by a select guard of uniformed troops.

From the rear.

The occasion that led me to finding the other monks was my decision to finish off my Mithridatic army. Part of the work is to do the camp— Mithridates tent— which was guarded, I believe, by a stag, a bull and a stallion. I’ve had these figures for a long time; I even started painting them, in a desultory sort of way, so it’s good to get them done finally.

Mithridates’ tent.

Another angle.

And another.

Mithridates’ army will be joined by an Armenian ally that can add more horse archers and some cataphracts. These are under way. I also decided that I could use the Carthaginian veteran spearmen as imitation legionaries, which would be an incentive to get them finished—well, some of them. I’m also doing another element of Cappadocian infantry also by Corvus Belli. In all, this will represent eight new elements for the army (and a ninth if the camp is counted). Here’s the first of the finished spearmen/imitation legionaries.

Carthaginian veteran spearmen (or are they imitation legionaries?)

Another angle.

And another.

Once I’ve got the Armenians and Carthaginians done, it’s back to the Italian spearmen and crossbowmen (who got demoted in the painting queue last week).

Troglodytes and Lizardmen

18 December, 2018

My painting output has dropped a bit in the last month, inasmuch as I’ve not got a lot of finished work to show. However, I have been busy organising my paint. It is now all in dropper bottles. This was a slow and messy job, but a good chance to assess the quality of a some of my paints. They are a lot easier to use now, so I think it was worth the effort.

Paints all in dropper bottles.

Otherwise, I have started painting the carroccio and the foot to morph my Normans into Communal Italians. I’ve done the shields, using mostly VVV decals, but also a few of my own that I made (I needed some decals for the carroccio, and added a few for the guards).

I have also spent time buying boxes to store my figures in. This occasioned my discovering some partly painted warbands for Song of Blades and Heroes. It didn’t take long to get them finished, which is quite satisfying. The figures are all Splintered Light, which come in irresistible warband packs (I have a lot more I could get done).

The first warband is a group of Troglodytes; I painted a test figure of them two years ago, and I got the base colour done of the rest: link. They languished after that. I was not entirely happy with the colour, which was too similar to the lizardmen, despite using different colours for the base and drybrushing. I didn’t let that trouble me this time, and just got the detail done, which is not too much work.


The warband has a commander and a shaman, and large chap and a pet lizard of some sort.

About face!

And turn again!

The other warband was some lizardmen. They were at the same stage as the Trolodytes, and didn’t take a lot of work to finish. They also have a commander and a shaman; they also have a larger chap with a trident.


About face!

And turn again!

I hope to use these figures at some stage; I also would like to get the warband of ratmen painted. The base colour for them is done, and they should look great when finished. They would join quite an array of SoBH figures now.

That’s two groups of figures that I’ve taken out of half-painted limbo. My Veteran Carthaginians remain in this place, but I’ve hit on a plan to get some of them done. I’m going to finish four elements of them to use as imitation legionaries for my Mithridatic army. Getting them done is likely to push the Communal Italians back down the queue!