Wednesday, 31 December 2014

From MartinN - 28mm Crusader Crossbowmen (40 Points)

For my todays second submission I visited the hot lands of Outremer again to add some retinue to my Monsieur Jaufrè de Montalban whom I entered for the 'Mount(s) & Rider(s)' Bonus Round.



I've seldom had the 'joy' to have such poor sculpts on my table to paint. Considering the price Gripping Beast are charging for these figures it seems a rip off to me. Outdated and poorly cast figures for the money you normally pay for 'premium' historical miniatures like Musketeer/Footsore.

Rant over.




As they definitely were not to my liking they were sitting on my shelf primed and prepped since the last challenge all the time starring at me with accusing eyes. Because I really don't like to toss figures in the bin I've paid good money for and as I found nobody who wanted to give them a new home I thought it was time to give them some paint. I even gave them strings to improve their overall appearance at least a bit.



I went for a (for my means) rather dirty looking, speed painted approach using the infamous Army Painter for the first time in years. Only the bright white of the feathers and helmets/ the shield was later totally covered over. This however allowed me to finish these bastards in a couple of hours (obviously discounting the day the AP needed to dry). In the end I even came to like these guys.

One of the strings (outer right) burnt away while removing fine fibres with a lighter :-/
Now I feel they look rather striking in their subdued tunics and their bright white/ red helmets. Maybe I'll touch up the bases with some dried grass at a later point to break up the monotony of the sand. Not sure yet if this will develop into an army for SAGA 'The Crescent & The Cross' or some other ruleset (Lion rampant seems to be THE new kid in town) at any point or if they'll just stay in my cabinet.

This second submission should give me another 40 Points to my roster.


From Curt:I painted these same figures in a Challenge a few years ago and have a similar opinion of them, though I must say I wish they had come off as well as yours. :) I really like the rustic linen counterposed against that very punchy red. The crossbows (besides the lighter mishap) look the business with addition of the string. Lovely work again Nick - and you're half way to your target. Well done.

23 comments:

  1. Are they really as bad as all that? I can't see a single thing wrong with them!

    Your rescue efforts have clearly paid off, lovely work!

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  2. They have turned out absolutely gorgeous despite the quality of the casting. Really stunning.

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  3. for such poorly figures you have done a top notch job they look awesome well done

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  4. Absolutely right on the casting of the GB figures - but I had to double check they were indeed GB figure as you have made them look absolutely fantastic! Really nice job.

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  5. They turned out really well..well done

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  6. I have not used AP for a year now, it is amazing what a good effect you can get with it. Great looking figures

    John

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  7. For unloved, homely models...those are freaking awesome! ;)
    They look the part of unwashed cannon fodder too! I never have figured out how to add strings without them looking like cables, but the crossbow strings really add to them!

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  8. For models you didn't like to start with, they look fantastic now. Great job!

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  9. talk about turing lead into gold - your painting has really improved these figures. I got the same set from Gripping Beast for my Norman army and concur they are very poor sculpts - but yours look a whole lot better than mine do!
    Well done

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  10. good job. very neat and well-chosen color.

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  11. They look just great to me! Very nice colour scheme as well!

    Christopher

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  12. Excellent colour choices and great technique make them look excellent to me. Cheers

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  13. These are great, never would have guessed they started off so bad

    Ian

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  14. Gripping Beast figures can be a bit hit-and-miss, but you did a bang up job on these, Martin! They look great, and I'd be happy to have them in my collection!

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  15. I'll take your word for how bad the figures are, since your paint job has completely redeemed them. These are great looking.

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  16. GB should pay you to paint their display figs mate. These are bloomin' lovely!

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  17. Excellent paint job - no way would you now see these as anything other that sterling models as a consequence. Well done!

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  18. Wonderful!!! These group of figures is really good, with an excellent painting work.

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  19. This is interesting to hear, as I've heard over the years that Gripping Beast made good product. Well, if they're substandard sculpts, you certainly gave them a superior paint job and did a lot with a limited palette. They look very hot under all that cloth and armour, very evocative.

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  20. I had never considered using color on the helmets, it looks really good. I too like the contrast with their drab clothing.

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  21. I'm normally not a fan of "stringing" bows, but these look great. And if the figures are half as bad as you're describing, you really managed to cover up that fact with the painting!

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