I've often wished that Prince August could have done better of creating a French infantryman than the Battle of Rossbach mold PA58. Of course, there is also the "French Regiments of 1750" and "Wild Geese" series of molds. But they are very much a case of old wine in new bottles, Karoliners sold with painting guides as French troops. Of course, I painted a regiment of these years ago.
And a Swiss battalion Courten made from GNW molds. A little better, but still essentially Danes or Russians in disguise.
In any case, following up on the previous post, it was time to try something more ambitious. My objective was two-fold. First, I wanted a more convincing French infantry figure for my 40mm armies. Secondly, I wanted it in the always useful "march attack" pose. Did I have the sculpting talent to make one ? Who knows, and what were the chances of creating a tolerably good figure the first time out ?
Hedging my bets, I decided to use a PA casting as the base figure upon which to add green stuff to build up a suitable master. For this, I chose the advancing musketeer PA14, the hat company counterpart to the previously featured grenadier figure.
Again, this is one of the older, flatter Eriksson molds without precise detail. The idea was to substantially rework the figure, but take advantage of the good proportions and aggressive advancing stance. I cut off the weapons, amputated his arms and filed down the coat to a bare outline. I then started to rebuild the figure with green stuff. And here and there, I used existing bits from other figures such as the musket and scabbards.
My main worry was getting the arms to appear natural, hoping to hit a happy medium between T.rex and orangutan. That and just getting the general "look" right. And the new master.
It looked pretty good to me, but the proof would be in the casting. My 1st mold went wrong when the master must have slipped somehow, resulting in an ugly seam down the middle of the figure. The 2nd mold worked better but once I got castings out of it, I saw that there were a few things which needed to be tidied up on the master. The 3rd mold works the best except the bayonet scabbard casting short. But by no means a deal breaker. In any case, this flow pattern is effective and the bayonet at the extremity casts fully every time.
And more painted figures. It would have been preferable to finish more but I was eager to share it.
How did it turn out ? Once done with something like this, after the initial delight of creation wears off you tend to see all the flaws. I'm looking forward to reading any and all constructive criticism but I have to say I'm pleased with the result.
Well, they look pretty damn good from my vantage point. Well done say I!ReplyDelete
Very impressive !ReplyDelete
I've looked for something to criticized but haven't found anything yet. Its hard enough to get the proportions of arm segments right on fully round figures, its harder on semi flats esp where an arm needs to be shortened coming across across the short side but you've got it and the rest. Very well done indeed.ReplyDelete
Gives me the itch to get back to sone sculpting myself.
Thanks very much indeed, Gentlemen !ReplyDelete
Most impressive indeed!ReplyDelete
Superb work... well done .ReplyDelete
Impressive work as always. Interesting to see how close semi-rounds are to full sculpts.ReplyDelete
Thanks very much for the encouraging words, tradgardmastare and Springinsfeld.ReplyDelete
And I think that's an astute observation. Athough it's obvious from the middle photo of the master that the figure is relatively flat down the middle: you're right.
The semi-round (semi-flat) style does vary, eh ? The design of molds such as Scad produce what we might call "thick flats", the Prince August style appears more like "compressed rounds". Maybe that's why the PA's still look quite natural when viewed any angle other than straight on, whereas true flats lose their illusion of depth when seen from any angle other than in profile.
A wonderful idea to change the the figure - I never dared such with the PA-figures, but you encourage me! It looks really amazing!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Peter. Yes, I also hesitated for a long time to do anything like this. Wish I'd gotten involved playing around with the green stuff and mold making years ago. But better late than never !ReplyDelete
Thanks, Allan. I have a fair amount painted now.ReplyDelete