Sunday, September 6, 2020

The Rockies Ablaze, Part One

<I’ve been going on here about my pulp project for a few years with precious little to show for it, so here goes.   Narrative fluff to start with slightly elaborated from @MarshalLuigi ’s tweets.  Small actions and character reactions to be determined using Call of Cthulhu 7th ed rules, larger actions probably by TFL’s Chain of Command.>

Near Camrose, Alberta, February, 1937.

Frenchy Lamoreux walked his trapline in the high foothills near Indian River every few days, weather permitting.   He often crossed paths with Old Grainger, out walking his line.  Frenchy looked forward to his chats with the Scot.   They’d share a tot of rum or whiskey from their flasks, and compare notes on what they were catching and who was paying best for the fur.  Lately Grainger was becoming convinced that another trapper, Ratko Gligic, was stealing from his traps.   “If I catch yon rascal in the act, I’ll kill him stone deed, I will!"

In the late afternoon, near one of Grainger’s untouched traps, Frenchy found the blood.   He was certain that it wasn’t the result of someone field dressing a kill.  It was more like something, or someone, had been simply torn apart.  Nearby, in some trampled snow, he found Grainger’s briar pipe, still full of half burnt gold flake.

As he surveyed the dismal scene, he felt his hair rise under his toque.  Frenchy knew with a terrible certainty that he was being watched.   He also knew that nothing he had ever seen on earth had made the bloody tracks heading off into the woods, and nothing on earth could make him follow them.

<Notes:   A good exercise in seeing how much winter scenery I’ve assembled thus far, and some fun with a backdrop.  It may be a while before the next scene in ready.  Frenchy is a Bob Murch Pulp Figures casting, and the thing in the trees is by Reaper.  Say vigilant, chaps!>

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Meanwhile, in Mordor

Hello friends!

My new (since June) post-retirement church job has kept me happily busy, along with finding safe day-trips to do with Joy during a stay-at-home summer.   I was able to use part of the last few months to finish this lot of orcs for my Lord of the Rings collection.  What a horrible lot!

This batch includes a GW orc captain from the lad pile, as well as eight Thistle and Rose (formerly Vendel) orcs, painted in Mordor livery.  I love that they are well wearing the same baggy trousers and puttees, it gives them a bit of a regular army look, the 3/92nd North Mordor Foot, maybe.  If you want to see Thisle and Rose figures well painted, visit Rabbit Man’s blog.

“Roiht, you ‘orrible lot, what do you do when you sees an Elf Lord?  You stick him, see!  No, don’t bleeding tickle him, STICK HIM!"

This ‘orrible lot also includes a box of Oathmark goblins that I purchased May 2019.   I built some as archers:

Spear chaps without shields.  Sorry the photos are rather dark.

Shields and hand weapons.  Tried for a general red and black theme to the shields, with some Mordor Eye livery, some more tribal.

Shields and shabby sticks.

Regimental photo before marching off to Gondor.

In general I found the Oathmark plastic figures to be easy to assemble, with a pleasing variety of weapons and gear.  While the Oathmark universe, from what I’ve seen of the rule books, is standalone fantasy, the figures fit well with my existing LOTR collection and have a Tolkienesque feel to them.  I haven’t done the math to see if they are cheaper than GW plastics, but they add a variety of poses to the Perry orc sculpts, so I may order a few more boxes over time, though the old Vendel figures, happily back in production through Thistle and Rose, are appealing..  I currently have a box of Oathmark wolf riders half-assembled to tackle next.

Blessings to your brushes!  




Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Perry Brothers Canadian Militia for the American Civil War

It was only six (!!) years ago here that I posted some musings here on what the American Civil War might have become had the British intervened as a result of the Trent Affair or some subsequent provocation in an alternate history timeline.  Six years goes by quickly, much more quickly than I work, apparently, but here are the first fruits of that project. 

These figures are Canadian militia from the Perry Brothers’ British Intervention range: BIF 11 (Command Group) and BIF 12 (infantry skirmish/firing line).   They wear the 1863 tunic and the 1855 shako.  I had an Osprey book on the Victorian British army in Canada on order, but as it went missing in the post (I’ve had bad luck with book orders during the pandemic), I went with the figures as shown on the Perrys’ website.


Flags were a problem as I did not have any information as to what Canadian militia flags looked like, so I took the path of least resistance and ordered a set of British regimental flags from Adolfo Ramos in Spain.    Considering the speed at which I paint, I wasn’t too worried about the time i would take for the mail from Europe.   Adolfo does brilliant work.   I ordered the presentation version of his flags, so they come mounted with painted flag staff and tassels, ready to mount.    Absolutely brilliant work.    These particular flags are of the 57th Regiment of Foot, from Adolfo’s Crimean War range, which are close enough for my liking.

I confess I did no absolutely no shading on the red tunics.  I didn’t restock my Citadel red wash before the pandemic hit, so I just used straight Army Painter scarlet, and I was quite happy with the look.


Bit of a vignette for one of the bases, as the NCO tries to get the firing line into shape.

I have several more British and Canadian regiments to paint, and some Canadian militia cavalry and two sections of Royal Artillery with 12 lb Whitworths on order, so at some point I should have enough redcoats to go up against a small brigade of Yanks, or maybe some skirmish actions using Sharpe Practice.  To keep my interest, I followed a friend’s recommendation to read the Britannia’s Fist series by Peter Tsouras, which imagines a British entry into the Civil War in 1863.   I’ve read the first novel, and found Tsouras to be a wooden sort of writer, but it is interesting.    The campaigns I envision, perhaps entering on Halifax or the old battlegrounds of 1812, will be much smaller than the grand campaigns that Tsouras imagines.

In the meantime, blesses to your brushes!



Saturday, May 30, 2020

Meanwhile in Rohan 8

This post will be much less interesting than the last one, as there are 100% no scantily dressed figures.   I got a bit of flack for posting the elf maiden photos on the Wargaming in Middle Earth Facebook page and rapidly deleted the post.  I never thought I was creepy, but apparently some did, so lesson learned.

So to today’s duller content.   Here are 12 Walkers of Rohan, bog-standard Rohirrim foot fighters, fresh off the Games Workshop sprue.

No mods of any sort.  The only concession to originality was to give a few of them grey cloaks vice the usual green cloaks.  I also made some attempt to change up the colours on the shields by using some blues and reds for variety.

Archers.  Can’t have enough of these chaps, especially for a siege game.  I have plans.

Fellow in the foreground is a bit of an oldster.  My white hair is almost as long as his in these lockdown days.

The most creative thing in this post is this Gripping Beast lead figure, of Alfred the Great, repurposed as a Lord of Rohan.  The shield transfer is from Little Big Men Studios.  


 Blessings to you brushes!


Sunday, May 24, 2020

Meanwhile - In the Elven Woodland Realms 4

Good morning from my part of Canada, where the spring has finally come in the latter part of May and we actually turning on the air conditioning yesterday!

Not sure these figures are dressed for AC.  Come to think of it, they’re not really dressed at all!   I’m a little embarrassed, being a vicar and all, about these figures, but I loved the aesthetic of the old War-games Foundry Realms of Faerie line and some years ago I jumped at the chance to buy the figures.    I’ve been intimidated about painting them, because flesh tones are hard to do right, but I’m reasonably happy with the way they’ve turned out.

These fierce young ladies join an existing cohort of finished figures to make a fairly distinctive war band for Dragon Rampant.  I’ve always enjoyed the comments of other gamers when their comrades appear on the table, so I expect these figures will raise some eyebrows.

 I modified the banner bearer to add a Games Workshop Uruk Hai head as a Middle Earth tie in.  Perhaps these figures are part of Galadriel’s secret service commando unit.  Professor Tolkien would doubtless frown in disapproval, but there you go.

 She’s a strong lass to hold all that up.

 Blessings to your brushes!


Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Renegade 28mm Confederate Infantry

Good day:


I hope his finds you and yours well, healthy, and weathering the pandemic.   I’m pleased to say that I’ve used the lockdown time to be fairly productive.  Last night I finished this regiment of Confederate infanry, 28mm figs from Renegade in skirmish/firing poses.  Sadly I believe that Renegade is out of business.   I bough a box of these figures at HotLead many years ago, started painting them, life got messy, and put the on hold.  The minis got knocked around badly during several moves, and I lost the nerve to get them finished until recently.

The flag is a Mississipi state flag from GMB Designs.   I chose Mississippi as a homage to my late wife Kay, aka Madame Padre, who was a born and raised there.  I already have two MS regiments, so this this regiment gives me a third, enough to form a brigade, which is important if I want to play more Pickett’s Charge.

See if you can spot the one Old Glory figure in this group.

The figures are definitely on the large side, perhaps the largest range of ACW figures I’ve ever seen, and there solidity reminds me of Dixon figures.   I always find that Confederate figures are a bit of a slog to mix, as I try for a convincing mix of greys, tans and browns in my uniform palette.

Thanks for looking and blessings to your brushes!    Stay well and safe.


Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Wings Over the Rockies: A Skiplane for the Pulp Project


Hey friends!

There has been spasmodic activity in the Mad Padre’s Chapel since we entered this strange limbo of lockdown.  With more time on my hands, I’ve completed some projects, including this addition to my 1930s pulp project, the Rockies Ablaze.   Last summer I went into Wheels and Wings, a massive model store on Toronto’s Danforth Avenue, and told one of the staff that I wanted a “skiplane with a 1930s vibe in 1/48 scale.    Almost a year later, here’s what I ended up with.

The model is a kit made in the Ukraine by ICM, a Soviet U-2 Polikarpov biplane with the undecarriage options for skis or wheels, and these crazy sidecars for evacuating wounded.  With some leftover decals from a 1/48 scale Airfix Spitfire kit, I thought it would do for an interwar plane in Canadian service.

It was a very excited crowd that came out to Sarcee Field near Calgary to see the RCAF’s latest addition, the DH 32 Junco.

Representatives from the Alberta government, the Western Militia District, and the RCMP are on hand to see this new marvel, which its pilot says can land on any flat piece of ground the size of a hockey rink, all damned winter long.

“Yessirree, she’s a treat to fly, and not so cold, if you know how to dress for it.”  Inspector McAllister has his own thoughts about spotting the many illegal trap lines in his district.

“Aerial reconnaissance!   That’s the thing we learned the hard way.  Invaluable at Vimy Ridge, let me tell you!”  General Millman’s driver smiles diplomatic and thinks to herself, “Not another bloody Vimy story."

No one invited Fitz, Jacques and Leo to the airfield, but it’s not like there’s a fence around it or anything.  “I tell youse boys, dis plane dere will be the trouble” says Jacques.  The others spit tobacco on the snow in agreement.


Blessings to your brushes!

Be well and safe.


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