27 July 2014

Chico Challenge - Heraldry

I love a multi-use miniature. In fact, I love any kind of multi-purpose thing that I make or have to spend time on, maximum return for expended effort etc. Which is why, when I saw that the theme for this week's Chico Challenge was Heraldry, it seemed daft not to, especially as the preparations I still need to make for BOYL14 are:

  1. Drybrush bases and add "grass"
  2. Paint three banners
I need a banner for my foot knights, my unit of billmen, and for my nascent force as its army standard (even if "army" is a touch out of scale with the reality!). The army standard seemed the most urgent, and would involve two different heraldic designs, one for the standard bearer and a different one for the banner. The (as yet unnamed) banner bearer has a simple coat of arms (per pale, azure and argent), but he carries the banner of his liege lord, the Duke de Corbin (paly of four, vert and or, a chief sable with three bezants, argent). Check out that spirally striped lance! Everything is freehand (as if it's not blatantly obvious...).

Things I'm pleased with? 
  • The lance. I'm dead chuffed with the impression the striped lance makes; I felt it needed something as the arms for the bearer are otherwise so simple. 
  • Blue. Despite the odd effect caused be needing to use the flash, I'm happy with shading such a dark blue.
  • The banner pole head. This was a piece I picked up somewhere from a more recent Bret. kit and joined it on with some ProCreate.
  • His nose. I'm getting better at shading flesh without slapping a thin wash onto a basecoat and hoping no-one will look.
Things I'm less pleased with?
  • Despite having interfaced the banner with kitchen foil (a tip I picked up somewhere on an online scale modelling site for getting a good "wave" into flags), it has pretty much flattened out, giving it an unnatural sharpness along its edged - tips and tricks very welcome!
  • The black on the flag. Made a hundred times worse by the flash, as mentioned above, it looks so stark in its shading. 

All in all, he'll be fine to put heart into my band of brothers as they prepare to fill the breach with their enemy's ensorcelled dead at BOYL. One last scale picture against his boss:

This blog will likely be "going dark" until BOYL, now, as I'm off on a well-earned family break until the Thursday before we descend on Newark.

Enjoy the summer until then, and may all your preparations be successful.


  1. I think he looks great, I look forward to meeting you at BOYL, sticking a warpstone blade in your back during the siege and then having a pint and and discussing it!

  2. For banners recycle your tomato purée tubes, nothing better and apparently an almost British only resource, we get colonials of all types bemoaning the lack of decent thick foil round their way.

    1. Not something I use much, but there may be a tube in the fridge. I shall investigate!

  3. Oh forgot to say nice banner. I always get confused with heraldry, I thought you were only supposed to have a colour on a metal or vice versa yet I see that rule broken all the time.

    1. Thanks!

      Yes, you're right about "the rules", with black sometimes considered to be in neither camp to allow more complex designs. It gets messy later with badges "proper" (i.e. in their natural colours, like trees and deer and the like), but the only real breaking of the rules I know of from the age of heraldry is the Kingdom of Jerusalem which had gold crosses on a silver background.

    2. What about Edward iii blue quartered onto red?

    3. Not technically "onto" red - the shield is divided into quarters, which can be any colours or metals. Although, thinking about it, most are a metal/non-metal pairing, they don't need to be to follow the laws of heraldry. That's my understanding, anyway!