Monday, 16 November 2009

Edward Woodward

Has died aged 79.

A great shame, but then we all have to go eventually. Woodward was in two of my favourite films - Callan (of course) and The Wicker Man (cheesy, but entertaining, and filmed nearby). I blame the Callan movie for my interest in the ACW. Woodward owned the Gettysburg terrain for a while (he'd offered to purchase the entire set-up featured in the movie but Gilder wouldn't sell the figures).

BBC obituary here.

Friday, 13 November 2009

Warrior Miniatures AWI Range

Over the years i've owned examples of most 'vintage' AWI ranges but these chaps have always eluded me, indeed i've never even seen a listing of the range. This is a review from Battle November 1976. It looks like they might have been compatible with Hinchliffe, Tradition, Garrison, etc. (being slim with decent anatomy), and the choice of subjects was interesting (officers with spontoons no less, and a fifer), so i'd still like to get my hands on some.

Unfortunately the current Warrior AWI range are relatively recent designs in the modern style.

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Brewer Besieged

Some great modelling work by Bill Brewer. I think the town buildings are particularly attractive, and despite being constructed over 30 years ago (where, in general, there wasn't the abundance of materials, parts and tools we have now) i reckon they knock the socks off much of what is available today.

Again the majority of figures featured are the wonderfully characterful Hinchliffe Landsknechts.

I've always been fascinated by sieges (i'm not really sure why....certainly from a wargaming perspective they are a great excuse to build stuff, and then knock it down with lots of artillery) so this article was always going to fire my imagination. Maybe an AWI or ECW siege could be on the cards soon.

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Bill Brewer

Bill Brewer was another master modeller and painter who is sadly no longer with us. Founder member of the South London Warlords, proprietor of the Rye Stamp and Hobby Shop, and paintbrush for hire, the quality of Bill's painting and scratch building was inspirational.

As far as i know Bill's work first gained (inter)national exposure through the pages of Battle - from which the above scans were taken. All 3 images are of the same Renaissance game staged during a club meeting in 1977. The first 2 illustrated an article on the Warlords ('With the Warlords', June 1977).

The majority of the figures in use are, of course, Hinchliffe.

Duncan MacFarlane seems to have been a fan as Bill's work featured frequently in the pages of Miniature Wargaming and Wargames Illustrated.

More on Bill Brewer shortly.

Monday, 2 November 2009

The Talented Mr Swales

Whilst i'm on the subject of the Hinchliffe Handbook i thought i'd post a couple of pages of Norman Swales illustrations (of which the Handbook must contain a few hundred). Swales' illustrations could also be found in various other Hinchliffe publications, Quarrie's Napoleon's Campaigns in Miniature, and Humbrol Authenticards (and no doubt elsewhere too). A fine illustrator and sculptor/designer...don't you just hate multi-talented people....8-)

Whilst Swales' illustrations were a pleasure to look at, and useful as an approximation of the subject figure, i must admit i would have preferred Hinchliffe to have used photographs of the actual models more often (which is one area where Minifigs scored top marks).

I wonder - did PG sculpt based on Swales' illustrations, or did Swales' drawings come afterwards? I have always assumed the latter....?

Pete's Elastic Ruler

I came across this in the Hinchliffe Handbook and it made me chuckle. Did no one tell Mr Gilder that his figures were supposed to be 25mm to the top of the head, or did he use an elastic ruler to measure them? Hinchliffe 25s varied from about 22mm up to 30mm - this inconsistency could be frustrating (why did i always end up with midget officers leading my Napoleonic battalions?)......... but you couldn't knock their style.