Wednesday, 26 May 2010
I'm sure that many wargamers sometimes get the urge to set aside their current projects for a time and paint something completely different. This happened to me a couple of weeks ago. I was up in the loft and started looking in the sets of drawers that house my "non-core" leadpile (i.e. all those figures that don't directly fit into the projects I have been working on over the past 2 years). I came across 3 packs of Foundry Baluchis and decided to paint them up over the next couple of weeks. At the back of my mind was the idea that I could use them as mercenaries or volunteers for the Sudan (although these figures are substantially larger and chunkier than those in the Perry Sudan range). I already have 2 packs painted up so eventually I will have a decent sized skirmish force.
I avidly collected the Darkest Africa figures that Mark Copplestone made for Foundry when they first came out, some 10 years ago. This was Foundry's golden age, when every month they released lovely sculpts from the hobby's best sculptors. You could sign up to a standing order system for their new ranges, whereby each month you'd receive a long box with between 6 and 8 packs at a 10% discount. I quickly signed up for the Caesarean Romans, Macedonians and Darkest Africa ranges (back in those days I wasn't the least bit interested in the AWI range, which was being released at the same time!). Of course Foundry then imploded, its sculptors left to start their own businesses and the rest is history. I managed to paint a good few packs of Darkest Africa figures but didn't base any of them. I began doing so a couple of years ago and one of my aims this year is to finish basing the remainder. In the meantime, several of the later packs have not been painted at all and I intend to paint a couple of them every now and then as a change of paint from horse and musket.
These figures form one old pack - nowadays the figures are split over a couple of packs, as Foundry meanly reduced the number of figures in their packs from 8 to 6 a few years ago (which was a disaster for the AWI range as it meant that the British command packs only had 1 standard bearer - useless!). The skin is painted with one of the newish Foundry flesh palettes - "Near Eastern Flesh 123". Painting people from Asia is always tricky; some are almost caucasian in colour whilst others can be quite dark. This palette seems to me to be a good compromise and I've also been using it for my First Crusade arabs. I'm currently painting a second pack of Baluchis so they should appear on the blog next week some time. The main building is a tomb from Hovels, bought ready painted and based at Salute. The walls and other bits are by Paul Darnell of Touching History.
8 figures. Painted May 2010.