Saturday, 10 November 2012

New TAG Releases

The Assault Group have recently released quite a few beautifull sculpts for the Great Italian Wars (Found here) and to be honest they have me in a bit of confusion as to their status as use able miniatures for the Battle of Fornovo which is right on the cusp of the Late Medieval and Renaissance as wargaming periods. Of course 'periods' of history cannot be neatly deposited into such arbitrary brackets but it does have me thinking about the relative fashions kicking around at the time and thus the suitability of the TAG sculpts for my demo game.

The main body of miniatures are going to be from the Perry Miniatures European Armies and Wars of the Roses ranges of miniatures but as TAG fit so snugly size wise it would be a terrible shame if I couldn't use their miniatures to add flavour and variation to the (already very tasty!) Perry ranges.

I suppose I might have equally called this post "A Cry for Help!" as I'd be very interested in what you chaps think about mixing the miniatures together for Fornovo.

As usual, please feel free to chip in.


OK, no Spanish at Fornovo but very nice all the same!

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Jean Poton de Xaintrailles

Jean Poton de Xaintrailles Interlude

This was a private commission for an American client. It is of course, at the title reveals, Jean Poton de Xaintrailles a bit of a giant of the Hundred Years War. Born sometime in the early 1390's in Gascony he was one of Jean d'Arc's Lieutenants and served Charles VII and was appointed Constable of France in 1454.

His military career saw him fighting at the Battle Cravant (1423), where he was captured, The Battle of Verneuil (1424),  and at the Seige of Orleans (1429) where he wounded. Following his capture at Cravant he was exchanged for John 'Bull' Talbot giving an indication of his status early on in his career. He also fought at some of the lesser know battles such as JargeauMeung-sur-LoireBeaugency and more famously at Patay He was also in command at the Siege of Compiegne.

Now the mini is it's way accross the Atlantic but I thought I ought to take some pics and add it to the blog as a bit of an 'interlude' as he was such an important figure in the 15thC and continued to command until the period where La Journee finishes and Gewalthaufen begins although this is by my own admission a bit of a grey area.

The miniature is from Front Rank and was a different experience to paint up say compared with Perry Miniatures Wars of the Roses/European Armies range as there was much more surface area on this model to 'play' with. I found that this was especially the case on the armour. Don't get me wrong, Perry Miniatures produce the finest range of Late 15th Century miniatures available in my opinion, it's just that Front Rank are a lot chunkier and taller and therefore there is more to work with so's to speak.

Hope you enjoy the pics :O)


Monday, 24 September 2012

Stradiot Banner Advice Needed!

I think the title is pretty self explanatory. The Perry Stradiot Command pack comes with a great sculpt of a chap holding a banner which is just begging to be made into something special. My Stratiots for the Battle of Fornovo will be in Venetian service and with this in mind I've been delving into the net in an attempt to find an appropriate pic of the sort of banner they may have carried as they crossed the river with many of the other Italian Light Cavalry/Troops.

I've come up with something of a blank except for one pic of someone's army that is displaying the following, which for me is the banner of Venice itself :

The pic below from Camisado, a blog woth following IMHO:

Banner/Standard of Venice

Now, my question to all those in the know is, would the Stradiots have been granted the use of the Venetian Standard/Banner? Were they important enough? I do not know the answer so I'm looking for folk with a better knowledge of the subject to come to my rescue. Basically.... please help!??
On the sunnier side of things I did come up with some great pics that have come in very handy when it comes to painting the models up and also adding the odd conversion (mainly on the 'hats' as I'm not convinced that they would all be wearing the same clobber!

So, lots to be going on with and you shall see the results very soon- assuming of course, that someone kind out there is able to help me out with the banner problem :O)

Yeah, that was certainly a hint (and a half)! :O)

Friday, 21 September 2012

Italian Armours and Deliveries From the Posty

The good news for today is that my order from the Perry's arrived....

1/ Stradiottoi Command
2/ Stradiottoi x2
3/ Italian Crossbows x2
4/Italian command x2
5/ Italian Heads
6/ Marching Liveried Billmen x2 (For WoR Tewkesbury)
7/ Marching Liveried Bowmen x2 (For WoR Tewkesbury)
8/ Plastic Horse Sprues x2

Quite  a little horde and that brings me up to date with all that I want thus far.


I've been skimming the net for typical Italian suits of White Harness circa 1495 (Ah ha! White Harness! That's the name my Wars of the Roses Blog needs!) and I've managed to come up with a few usefull pics but to be honest it wasn't really anything that I didn't already know. So, the call goes out to anyone who can provide me with links, books, references of any kind really that are a little outside the box, something that I may not have read about/seen...... any help will of course be very much appreciated!

Very Interesting Suite Indeed!

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Fornovo You Tube Link

I came across this on You Tube and thought I'd share. It's a little jingoistic but it does give a nice if very brief outline to the events that lead to the Battle of Fornovo.
Hope that some folk who may not be familiar with the battle may find it usefull. There are certainly a lot of great images on the screen!

Monday, 17 September 2012

Medieval Warfare Magazine and The Assault Group

The next issue of Medieval Warfare seems like a good one for the Great Italian Wars with articles such as, Vassilis Pergalias, 'Learning from the ancients - Machiavelli’s Art of War', Filippo Donvito, 'The Battle of Ravenna, 11 April 1512 - Storm of steel', Jean-Claude Brunner, 'Julius II’s 1512 presentation banners - The Pope’s gift to the Swiss' and Sidney E. Dean, 'The Battle of Marignano, 13-14 September 1515 - A blow to Swiss ambitions'. A veritable 'must have' if you're interested in the Great Italian Wars.

On a different subject, well OK now we're talking miniatures and not specifically history and warfare, I've just ordered from The Assault Group two packs of Italian Elmeti who will be backing up the Italian nobility:

Also a pack of Italian/Swiss Papal Guards who will be keeping the Clergy on the Carraccio safe and sound:

That's all for now, hopefully something painted next time :O)

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Uncovering Richard III

If you're at all interested in Medieval history and warfare you have probably heard about the Richard III dig and the hunt for his body?

If not read this:

If you'd like to know what Channel 4 have up their respective sleeves as regards Richard III's body then you really ought to read the following letter and check out the link under the text. The following letter was sent out as an e-mail to a chap who does a wonderfull Blog entitled, Army Royal. It is a well researched and studied look at what the Army of Henry VIII might have looked like. The painting is top notch as Stuart has a lovely free flowing style which I really like. in other words, thoroughly worth checking out! Do it now!


Dear Viewer,
As you previously contacted us regarding a programme on Richard III, we thought you might be interested to hear of the decision by Channel 4 to commission a programme due to the high volume of requests received.
For more information on the programme, please follow the link below:
Kind regards
Sandra Carter
Channel 4 Viewer Enquiries

Excited? Well, I for one am very intrigued.

Here's the link from the C4 website:

Enjoy the read,


Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Battle of Fornovo & Partizan Buys

With The Other Partizan now gone and some beautifull games on display I am even more determined than before to put the Battle of Fornovo on as a display game as soon as I can. another plus is that after my hiatus due to illness I have almost completely caught up on my actual work, which is of course painting other peoples miniatures!

Quick plug- My website with all the details including prices etc is here: Darrell Hindley Figure Painter.

OK, down to business, my Partizan buys pertaining to Fornovo were as follows:

Italian Carraccio

Now, a historical note, Carraccio's were not seen on the battlefield in Late 15thC Italy but the model is simply too wonderfull not to include and so will be taking it's place in the Italian camp in amongst The League of Venice's finest.

Priests and Papal Legates

And where would a Carraccio be without the priests and Papal legates? A must buy as far as I was concerned! They may be amongst the camp or more likely with the addition of some of the Wars of the Roses range watching the battle from a safe distance.

Condottiere  Captains and Generals

With the above models, again with the addition of other Parry Late 15thC mini's will be the backbone of the command vignettes created for the Italians. I have quite specific plans of what i want to do..... more on that when the time comes.

Italian Mounted Crossbowmen
I had already started converting my own mounted Crossbowmen when this pack appeared. "Damn it!", was my first remark but they are very Italian looking in their helmets and tabards and perfect for the job of some of the Italian Crossbowmen and Light Troops that crossed the river in an attempt to put pressure on the right flank of the French. They will without doubt be mixed with some of my conversions. Other conversion work being more suitable for the French.

Italian Sword and Shield Skirmishers

It may seem very strange to see shielded men on the battlefield as late as 1495 but there is evidence for these fellow fighting as skirmishers at Fornovo. In my research I have come across a source an invaluable source of contemporary Italian infantry shield designs that will really bring these miniatures to life.

Italian Handgunners

Many Italian city States were quite quick to take up firearms in contrast to the French, who often relied on the granted more powerfull than in the past, crossbows with a metal Lath (bowstave or if .you prefer, prod).

What I forgot to buy!!

You would think that all this would have been enough Late Medieval purchases for one show? No so! Below are the packs of mini's that in my excitement I somehow forgot to buy.

Italian Crossbowmen Skirmishing

These Crossbowmen will be intermingled with the screen of Handgunners and perhaps put together in more solid units as it has been proposed that they sometimes fought in this manner.

Italian Command

Well, somebody has to lead these villains!

What is on the Perry website and hopefully available soon if not now:

Stradiot Command and Stradiots

Stradiots were generally drawn from the Balkans. Originally though not exclusively Albanian, these troops were well known for their fierceness. They were employed by both the Italians and later the French.

At Fornovo, they formed part of the flanking force sent to the French right.


Even Italian soldiers carrying polearms would sometimes make use of the shield so these will come in handy as a very colourfull way of marking out some units as Italian.

Until a few days time,


Thursday, 30 August 2012

...... to all the staff in the Plastic Department of North Durham University Hospital for saving my thumb and thus allowing me to enjoy my hobby again and thus continue with my dream job!

My thumb has healed extremely well, the stitches melted away without any problem, the incision is very clean and all I have to worry about now is to remember to apply some moisturiser every now and again to stop the dry skin around the wound from flaking and getting very itchy!!

A job well done IMHO.

Sorry for the crap quality of the pic, it was taken at 5:30 this morning and I was a bit groggy and half asleep.


Wednesday, 22 August 2012

A Stitch in Time Saves?

Well eight actually!

Just a quick update on my thumb!

Had it re-dressed yesterday and the nurse says it's healing very nicely and I no longer have to hold my hand upright all the time- a great relief. Bad news is that I still can't use the thumb until the surgeon has removed the dressing and checked things over.... could be worse though not being able to do any work is driving me up the wall.

Next post should see me back in action!!

Saturday, 18 August 2012

A Slice of Luck!

OK. Been for a cracking surprise holiday thanks to my other half Sabrina. The sojourn was in celebration of the fact that I've 'survived'  two consecutive cancer scares! Well done, time to crack on some might say?


We all know the rule about always drawing a knife away from your body, yeah? How many times have you forgotten this and pulled the blade towards your body? In my case I very rarely do this, except on Wednesday at 6pm when cleaning up some miniatures I broke the golden rule and payed the price big time, slicing deeply into my left thumb down to the bone. Ouch indeed! So, I cupped my hands quickly moved like lightening to the bathroom to avoid staining the carpets (I know!) whilst shouting for Saby to bring a bandage upstairs so I could stop the bleeding that rapidly filled my hands and overflowed into the basin! This she did with a tea towel! With the potential risk infection from the tea towel I, having realised that I had happily missed the vein and although the cut was very deep, it wasn't going to make me pass out like a big girls blouse!

A&E then. I was very surprised to hear the practise nurse tell me that she had made an appointment for me at the Durham Plastics Department at the University Hospital as she was worried that I may have cut into the nerve and also the tendons! It quickly dawned on me that in my line of work this could spell doom as I could lose the dexterity of my left hand! A sort of panic set in......

Pic of the original dressing and one worried looking self.

Next day started early with what I assumed would be a long day. It was........ I got to the hospital at 8am and was still there waiting for surgery at 5:30pm. Luckily the excellent staff in the Short Stay Surgical Department had opened up another theatre as my wound was considered to still be an 'open wound' and the possibility of infection of the tendons was high. Now, bearing in mind that I've had two major cancer scares I'm not a fan of hospitals at all and as the day went on my anxiety grew, especially when they finally called my name out! To be fair the surgeons were great, after a local anaesthetic, they checked for nerve damage; none was there though I did miss the anterior interosseous branch of the median nerve by 1mm!!!!! If the cut had been 1mm in one direction I would have lost any meaningful dexterity in my left hand and possibly the use of my thumb! One very lucky lad really. It was then a general cleaning of the wound to make sure that the tendons were sterile etc and they bandaged me up and popped me into recovery!

Oldish nurse excellent 'moring' dressing.


Post op dressing

An interesting couple of days if you're into thumbs(?) but perhaps more importantly (and upsetting) I have been ordered not to use my left hand for eleven days and that it why you will find this article has been cut and pasted on all my blogs :O)