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Monday, August 24, 2015

Warlord British Forward Observation Officers

I recently painted up two of the British Forward Observation Officers from Warlord and I very much enjoyed the experience.  The sculpts were solid and had good detail.  I chose the FOO's as they were less stressful for a first attempt.

My main concern at the outset is simply getting the colours of the uniforms and webbing right.  




Yes, the lips are too red and they look silly, but as these are just toss off figures, I'm not worried about it.  What I want to know is what you think of the uniforms and the webbing.  Did I make any glaring errors?

My next WWII figures will be Warlord US Airborne Bazooka &80mm Light Mortar Teams.  I'm going to paint them as members of the 101st Airborne Division as I can easily find reliable information about them.  

I also have an Afrika Korps Kradschutzen Motorcycle and Sidecar.  I intend to paint the one I have by copying Leif   at The Figure Fanatic method for doing his Afrika Corps vehicles. Then I'll have to buy another one and try to copy Nicks dark version recently posted at Moiterei's bunte Welt.

I'm going to take my time before settling into one thing as reference books are expensive and I can't afford to buy loads of them.  There's no point in painting historical figures if I'm not willing to invest in learning the history.  I'm torn between German Afrika Corps, British Desert Rats, British Eastern Front and US Pacific Theatre. I can only pick one and that's not going to be an easy choice to make. 

Along with this new interest I will continue to paint Moderns and Pulp as I've no intention of giving those up. I've still to post my Jazz figures and I've a Hasslefree Modern War figure to post as well. I just had to get these up and approved of before I move onto anything new.

While I was away I noticed that I gained some new followers.  I want to let those people know that when I click on their icon in the follow box, I can't locate a link to their blogs.  If any of you are reading this, please give me a link in the comment section and I will return your follow.  

The weather here has been wretched last week so I was able to find time to post today.  I hope to post again next week, but if the weather improves, I'll put that off until things turn to crap again and I'm forced inside. 








89 comments:

  1. Excellent, even if they do look like they've been eating ice pops. Can't really help with the uniforms but they look fine to me. Google images is always my go to resource for uniforms and re-enactors are extremely pedantic so I use their websites.
    If only I could get my lighting to be as good as yours, and my painting

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    1. I looked through Google images and as a beginner it was a bit confusing. There are so many different shades to the uniforms. Some have more green and some are pale to dark brown. And then there's early War and late War. I learned about the different patterns used, but good God, my head began to spin with all the information.

      I've had no trouble finding good images for the US Airborne though, so I feel pretty safe with them.

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  2. If you want to you can paint the webbing pale green instead of Khaki for late war british. Both existed. (But usually all soldiers in the same unit would have the same colour, so no mix and match.)

    Only error I can think of is that I think the metal tube you have painted on the radio operator (below the radio) should be wood, It's a shovel handle.

    See here: http://resources.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/homework/war/kit.html

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    1. Thank you so much for the link. I've bookmarked the site.

      I had no idea what that was, so I just painted it a metal colour, crossed my fingers and hoped for the best. It's these things that show my inexperience, but I'll learn as I go. I think it will take a good 6 months to work everything out properly and not make such mistakes. There's just so much to know and new techniques to acquire. But it will keep me happy in the Winter months.

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  3. Excellent work Anne! Not sure about the exact colours, but to my eyes the uniforms look spot on and there's a good contrast between the webbing and the uniform to make it look interesting! At least for me a brighter colour always works better in uniforms on minis as "correct" shades usually end up looking too dark on such a small subject. And stressing about the correct shade is a bit goofy as well as there will be considerable amounts of wear and tear and I highly doubt that you'll find a squad where most soldiers wouldn't have slightly different shades of uniform due to different manufacturers, production batches and amounts of wear.

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    1. I have to admit, I'm terribly nervous about getting into this. And there's a reason for it. What none of you know is how much harassment I had to put up with when I first began painting. Some of the horrid things that were said to me on forums and on some peoples comment sections were painful. So interacting with a new group of painters is a scary thing for me. I know I'll face rejection and in some places and there are wargamers out there who will either ridicule me publicly or behind my back. There are gamers out there who wouldn't be caught dead commenting on my blog and who won't give me the time of day. Earning their respect as a historical painter may be impossible no matter how hard I work to learn everything correctly.

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    2. Internet can definitely be a nasty place sometimes. Hiding behind a nickname seems to give some morons the freedom to say anything that comes to their mouth without any regard for the fact that there are real people on the other side as well.

      I can believe that some more hardcore historical modellers might be quite harsh and very outspoken when dealing with the exact correct shade etc. But generally those vocal few should just be left to mind their own business and not too much thought to be given to their babbling. Though people like that are partly why I got a bit fed up with building scale models previously. The endless debates, that often led to insulting, about correct shades etc. when in the reality there rarely was a consistent shade in equipment due to aging and different manufacturing places. And add to that the effect that a smaller scale has to how we see colours. The clothing and vehicles like tanks we had in the army was never the same shade from piece to piece. I'd only expect equipment being used in the war to have even more variety.

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    3. There are Fantasy painters who are just as bad. They'll argue endlessly over the colour of orc and goblin skin. And then there's the crowd that argues over what colour clothes dwarves wear. Some of the Fantasy painters can be technique snobs. If you can't paint non metallic metals, you're scum. It's ridiculous, it's Fantasy it should be fun. I got chewed up and spit out on more than one occasion.

      I know I'll take a bit of crap from some people, but hopefully I'll meet some new people that will be patient and take the time to answer my questions. And I'll learn who the mean people are and will avoid them. Right now I'm just lurking and trying to suss out who is nice and who isn't.


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  4. They look pretty convincing to me Anne, lovely foray into the historical side of the hobby, intrigued as to which side you will eventually plump for. Bring on the Screaming Eagles.

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    1. I'm having a hard time holding myself back from buying multiple box sets. It all looks so good, but I'm using restraint. I spend loads of time just looking at things, checking prices and reading tutorials. It's an expensive undertaking and I don't want a lot of figures I won't paint laying around in the lead pile.

      Oh yeah, I'm stoked about painting those guys!

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  5. Excellent job Anne, fantastic details and, once again, great looking base...Gorgeous!

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  6. Think they look nice!
    FOO's - does that make them Foo Fighters then?
    US Pacific Theater sounds interesting. Pick which one interests you the most!

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    1. Oh Alex, I missed this comment this morning. I had a blonde moment and I feel like an idiot right now. Thank you so much for stopping by today!

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  7. The standing squaddie is wearing a sleeveless jerkin, which were made out of tanned leather rather than khaki. You can tell by the length - British battledress ended at the waist.

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    1. Thank you for pointing that out. It's things like this I need people to tell me. I haven't seen you in ages and hope all is well with you!

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    2. Cheers hen.

      Had a bad few years. Getting there...

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    3. I'm sorry to hear that and I hope things get better and then onto good again. Take care of yourself!

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  8. They look the part to me Anne. Lovely work and great basing!

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  9. Hi, dear Anne! Welcome back from your summer break. As an outsider who knows next to nothing about miniatures, I can only gaze in awe and tell you that I see great work with natural color and extraordinary attention to detail such as the shadows in creases. The results are very pleasing to the eye as I am sure your expert friends will tell you.

    Again, it's wonderful to see you back here on your own blog after generously following mine during your hiatus. Happy Monday, dear friend Anne!

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    1. The hardest thing about historicals as a painter is that I can't choose the palette. History makes that decision. So with these, I'm stuck with shades of brown that are very close in hue and getting separation between areas is hard to do. The good thing is that it will force me to improve my technique to get contrast and make the figures pop. This should help me in other areas of painting and give me overall improvement.

      Thank you so much for stopping by Shady!

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  10. Hola Amiga
    Magnifico trabajo si señor
    un saludo

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  11. I can't say I notice any glaring, or even non-glaring, errors with the uniform. You know a lot more about painting and even the history than me though. I didn't think painting would open up other new interests for you, such as learning the history behind the figures. That sounds great actually.

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    1. I'm a huge fan of WWII history and I think I've seen just about every documentary done by now. However, one can only learn so much from a documentary and good reference books are expensive. The one I'd really like to have is 105.00USD. I get dreadfully bored in the Winter so this will fill some time.

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  12. British Desert Rats - how very convenient, dear :)
    I'm glad you enjoyed painting them... and yes, the one with the red lips does look a bit like a drag queen :)
    Is your cold over?
    Blogger follower's button has been experiencing problems for some time now... it is not just you

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    1. He looks quite silly doesn't he? He probably entertained the troops as a drag queen to improve morale.

      My cold only lasted for about four days and I whined my way through all four. I HATE being indoors and it made me grouchy. Poor Hubby.

      Ya, I'm really upset about not being able to find those peoples blogs as I don't want to hurt any feelings. I do hope they stop by and read the whole post and let me know how to find them.

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    2. Or maybe he was kissing tons of ass, dear, you know how it is in the army if you wanna climb up.... you first have to kneel down :)

      So you is outside again? We've finally had a few colder days with rain but now it is getting hot again.

      It has been like that with followers for quite a long time now, don't know why they don't fix the bug.

      Dahlink, I've burnt you tons of discs and had to buy a few more dvd's so that I can burn you POLDARK and VILLAGE too :) And I hear today BLACK ADDER might be shooting again, at least Baldrick says so...

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    3. Thank you so much!! Just let me know when you've everything done and we can do our trade. I'll get any kind of tea you wish.

      Black Adder might film again? Oh, oh, oh, that's the best news I've had in years! I wonder what period of history they might do and who all will be in the cast. I wonder if they'll get Fry and Laurie in it. If it does come back it will be mega-huge news. After the loss of Top Gear, BBC needs something big to bring them back from the edge of oblivion :0)

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    4. BBC is doing just fine, dear, they always have some lovely epic series and British Bake Off :)
      Baldrick says Laurie could be the difficult part because he's become so huge in the meantime... or at least he think he has :)))

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    5. So old Hugh has an ego now does he? That's too bad as he was so funny in the series. We'll just have to wait and see who all Rowan can get together in the meantime.

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  13. Wretched weather but top notch painting Anne. The lips do not look too bad to me mate, so don't worry about that. Not rivet counting or anything, but I am sure the Rupert with the bino's is supposed to be wearing a leather 'Jerkin'.

    This was a common enough item that should contrast in colour to the rest of the battledress.
    They ranged in colour from tan to a dark brown, almost black.

    Here is a example here. http://www.surplusandoutdoors.com/shop/british-militaria/military-uniforms/genuine-1950-s-army-issue-leather-487604.html

    Getting the shine right would be interesting.

    Once again nice one. My pick would be US Pacific theater, simply because of the greater variation of colours due to fading, wear and tear and units involved.

    Model on!

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    1. I could tell from the lines of the sculpt that it wasn't a shirt, but when I looked at the way it was painted on the website, the painter made no distinction in colour. And I found several other people who painted it the same way. It's things like this that are frustrating and that's why in the early days I'll have to ask a lot of questions.

      Thank you so much for pointing it out and giving me the link. I appreciate the help.

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  14. That one guy sure has eyes wide looking at something haha awesome job indeed. And look, you posted before September, bravo on that. Way too friggin hot here and then the power went out, ugg.

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    1. He's got that "new recruit" look about him. Young and scared out of his mind by what he's actually seeing.

      Ya, it's been wicked hot here and little rain for the past month. I hope we actually have an Autumn this year and don't go from 90 degree weather to 20 degree weather on October 1st. I'll be in a wicked mood if that happens again this year.

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    2. Yeah, hopefully not. Winter is supposed to be brutal again, not sure how they know, but they better be wrong.

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    3. I heard that too and I just can't take another Winter of 20 to 40 below zero weather. Just in case they're right I'm going out and buying mountaineering gear. I want pants, gloves, coats that can take Arctic temperatures.

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    4. hahaha going all mountain woman at your sea, going to go live in a house in a tree? At least with the cold I can hid indoors and in the car, stupid snow though making driving a pain in the arse

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  15. Lovely work Anne. :)

    As for the radio operator's red lips, I remember reading an obituary a few years ago of a British officer who always went into battle wearing full make-up and a ladies' chiffon scarf (and possibly other items of ladies' apparel underneath his uniform). Perhaps your guy is a relative or friend?

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    1. I would love to see a pic of that guy in battle and hear some of the stories his mates had to tell of him. I can picture it though. This guy could be a brother perhaps.

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  16. As usual, Anne, the figures look perfect to me!

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  17. Very nice work again, Anne! Nice to see you back to your hobby - hope the break was relaxing too.

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    1. I've had one of the best Summers in years. My garden is bigger than ever and I've loads of butterflies and the bee population has rebounded. And I'm loving my fenced back yard. The privacy is fantastic!

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  18. If you went with 8th Army / Afrika Korps then the plastic boxes by Perry miniatures would be a great place to start. You can build a complete platoon for both sides for about 40 pounds - and you can build your bases into mini - dioramas given they are multi-pose figure kits.

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    1. Those are the ones I'm leaning towards and I'm so close to just going ahead and buying them. Afrika Korps are my first love in WWII as I used to game that with my cousin when I was a little girl. We spent hours and hours outside making battlefields out of dirt and playing with unpainted plastic soldiers. And then there's the tanks....it's tempting!

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  19. If you went with 8th Army / Afrika Korps then the plastic boxes by Perry miniatures would be a great place to start. You can build a complete platoon for both sides for about 40 pounds - and you can build your bases into mini - dioramas given they are multi-pose figure kits.

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    1. Also the idea of the dios is tempting. And it's Perry, and I love the poses on their figures.

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  20. Lovely painting Anne and the colours look good to me. I'm still waiting for your Jazz posting, so your mentioning of it has certainly gladdened the heart. Good to see you painting :-)

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    1. I've still to make the bases for the Jazz figures. I pushed these forward so I could ask some questions and find out if I could even paint this stuff before I went any further. I'm going to finish them while I prime the US Airborne figures. They'll post next month.

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  21. They're very good - honest! If you want, I'll launch into my diatribe about wear and tear versus 'uniform' colours. Don't take too much notice of the button counters ;O)

    The history side is reasonably easy as there's a ton of stuff on the web, but, as with anything, take care and double check. However, above all, enjoy yourself.

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    1. This is the concern about my painting style-it's too damn clean. Ideally I want my figures to have some realism. Nothing was clean, everything was caked in dirt, and dinged up. These guys look like they've just been to the dry cleaners. I'm currently cruising around reading tutorials on weathering and mud. What I can't find is a good tutorial on painting uniforms that look dirty.

      Ya, I've found out that the web isn't always reliable on history. I've found all kinds of conflicting articles so I'm going to have to go to books in the end. Good books are expensive and my local library has nothing.

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  22. You are right Anne it will be a difficult choice to make.but with your brushmanship which ever you select will turn out terrific I am sure. If it were my choice I would go for the 14 (Forgotten) Army but there are not too many figures for that. So Instead I would suggest that you find the figures you like and use them as a springboard.

    These two figures do look exceptional. By the way.

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    1. Ya, I've got to like the sculpts or I won't enjoy it. I keep coming back to Perry figures but cleaning the flash off the plastic is a bit of a bummer and might put me off. I also want to buy the Dad's Army box set from Warlord. I'll have to work out a reasonable budget and take the plunge next month.

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    2. If you like the Perrys' style they also did Dad's Army figures for wargames foundry. Give them a look.
      http://www.wargamesfoundry.com/our-ranges/worldwar2/british

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    3. Oh God, you shouldn't have shown me those! Now I want the Warlord set and some of these. The Home Guard Communications is absolutely brilliant and I have to have that one. This is all going to cost The Hubby a lot of money and I'll have to plot very carefully to get everything I want. I've my own pocket money stashed away and can use some of that if I have to.

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  23. Love it, Anne! You have such a beautiful style and and it shines on these great sculpts. Your basing is superb as well. Enjoy the new challenge and I'm looking forward to more.

    I wouldn't worry about "clean." We all want nice looking figures. If we threw dirt/mud over them, they'd look realistic but not so great on the tabletop.

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    1. I can't figure out a way to make uniforms and faces look dirty without also making them look like crap. For weapons and vehicles it's straightforward. I have worked out how to use Baking Soda and paint to create mud and will work out the hairspray method to create scratches. The penultimate thing for me to work up to is a tank. I think it will take a year before I'm ready for something like that though.

      Thank you so much for taking time to stop by as I know how busy you are.

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  24. Pretty good work Anne! I specially like the basing. While I think you have the colours spot on, I too, do think it all looks too fresh and clean, a bit of a very light dry-brush with an off-white colour to resemble dust would tone done the colours and blend it all in some more.

    That said they are still very nice!

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    1. Ya, I'm going to have to do some tweaking with my painting style to get the proper look for WWII. When I do my mortar crew I'll focus more on that end of things. Realistically I think it will take a good year to get things like they really should be. Right now, I've a bad case of nerves over it but I know that will pass and I'll become more confident and relaxed.

      Thank you Sander!

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  25. Wonderful brushwork Anne! The uniform colours look spot on to me. I wasn't aware you had much interest in WWII and I'll be interested to see how you go with it. FYI, the latest issue of WBQ had an article on DAK uniforms which might be of use. I can't remember if you had noticed that or not...

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    1. I downloaded it and I mentioned that to Evan in my comment. That's a great article and the timing was perfect for me.

      Ya, my interest in WWII goes back to when I was little. Rommel and Monty were my favourite generals. The stories of the battles and their strategy was fascinating. Also I built all the model planes from the period and hung them from fishing wire from the ceiling in my bedroom. I'm not planning on doing any planes, but I dream of doing tanks one day.

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  26. Gosh the attention to detail is amazing! My ex has all these great books on uniforms from the middle ages to WW2 and I think you would salivate to have a few:) I should find out the names of the books etc and let you know. I know he bought them for like $15 at the time. I think you got things right but I am not an afficiando(spelling??). I would like to see the German Afrika Corp or the British Desert Rats but that is me. I think you need to go with your gut. Do you use water-based paints or oil?? In case you can't get to my blog it is http://createdbybb.blogspot.ca.

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    1. Now a days those books cost a fortune. It's insane the price of them and a really good book is well over a hundred dollars.

      I'll probably end up in either Afrika Corp or Desert Rats as I've loved those for so long. I'm going to try a few other things before I decide.

      I use acrylic paints that are made specifically for these types of figures. The water based paints are nice because it's easy to strip the figures if you make a mistake and there's no need to open a window to vent for fumes.

      Thank you for the link as I couldn't get to your blog from your avi and add you to my blogroll.

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  27. Very nice work, Anne. Maybe the fellow with the red lips has been eating a Yank's Spam sandwich smothered in ketchup. Spam is good!

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    1. I love Spam. Spam-n-cheese sandwiches, Spa-n-eggs and Spam-n-Fried Potato's are my favourites.

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  28. Great work indeed, and love the detailed work done. Greetings!

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  29. anne! nice to see you back even if only for one post....I hope this finds you hubby and kitty fang
    well....I hope this comment posts as the internet has been fecked here since friday....the soldiers
    are awesome, I admit I dont know what you mean by webbing but the uniforms rock, the color and the
    shading in the folds of the cloth.....and the helmet coloring......nailed it in my book! great job! nose kisses
    to kitty fang.....getting a low status bar again....will sign off before I lose this comment XXXX laura

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    1. I hate it when my internet acts up. We live a block away from the Fire and Police departments and their equipment interferes with out wi-fi signal. Drive's me bonkers.

      All is fine with us here and I may do a post next Monday before I drop off again for another couple weeks. But who knows with me, it could be another month.

      I hope your internet problems clear up before your Thursday post.

      Be well my friend!

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  30. Nice work, ANNE O'.

    I like how much you care about getting the little details right. And I still look forward to seeing the Jazz musicians when you've got them completed.

    ~ D-FensDogG
    'Loyal American Underground'

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    1. I've got to sculpt their bases, do final highlights and take a test photo. Then fix mistakes. And then, they'll post. Definitely next month as I'm not going to allow myself to get distracted again by some new, shiny figure.

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  31. Nice work Anne the colours really stand out. Painting miniatures should be done for enjoyment so if your happy with the results then go with it, we have all probably taken flak about mistakes. So let the haters hate , some of them you would please anyway so why try. Just paint and enjoy!

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    1. Thank you Russ. Ya, I'm going to have to get over it and just jump in and have fun like I usually do. Being new at something is a bit intimidating at times.

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  32. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  33. Great work. That uniform colour is a son of a gun! It was made in so many places and varied in shade. Especially if you add in fadeing and wear. The khaki colour never looks the same in images on TV or the web.
    I think yours looks fine! That FOO job had very HIGH casualties. Not a pleasant job to get I would imagine.
    cheers

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    1. Every painter I looked at and every web site I went to had slightly different shades of brown. Some even had a bit of green to them. It drove me bonkers!

      I did do a bit of reading on them and found that the new recruits really had to be warned not to get to eager. I even found some cartoons from the period on them. Pretty neat stuff.

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  34. mmm, agreed. I like the uniform work too, very authentic

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  35. Fecking good work my cailin, how have you been?

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    1. I've been a pitiful wreck without you, that's how I've been. Oh but's it does my heart good to see you here again. I'm doing a happy dance!!!!!

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  36. Very nice. As others have mentioned, and I like to put this into practice, uniform colours vary tremendously based on who dyed it and where, length of time in them field, lighting conditions, just about everything. Some people like to obsess in the "true" colours but I think you end up with less realistic figures when they are done that way. These figures look great.

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  37. Very nice work Anne and a bit of a departure from your normal work, but it's always nice to spread ones wings.

    Christopher

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