Sunday, 23 January 2011

Border Horse

Starting off my 2011 painting schedule, here are some Border Horse to feast your eyes upon, they were a pleasure to paint and have kept me busy over the last few weeks.

I was umming and arring over what to paint next as I have a legion of headless infantry awaiting the forthcoming Perry Tudor heads so I needed to embark upon a relatively small stop gap project to occupy myself with and these chaps fitted the bill perfectly - and were a little influenced by spending time in the North of England over Christmas; reiver country.

The miniatures required minimal clean up, mainly on the horses but the quality of sculpt on them is fantastic and worth spending a little extra time getting them prepared. The figures come with a light lance which I have kept for my bits box in preference for arming these with light javelins / staves along with a shield.

By all accounts border horse were armed to the hilt so there are a lot of possibilities for adding extras to these such as pistols, targets, crossbows and bows wrapped in cloth, not to mention a sturdy cloak. I have tried to reflect that in the few additions I have made on these but there is much more scope with some patience and experiment so I shall be purchasing some more at some point to do just that.

With regard to the shields I looked around for some decent studded target shields but my search was fruitless. I found a few manufacturers but they didn't quite cater for what I was looking for so I used a plain shield with a simple St. George cross design. As far as I know, this, strictly speaking would be a bit late for the early Tudor period (unless someone can enlighten me) as I think it was mainly something which was used for recognition in the later Elizabethan Irish campaigns. Anyway, a little artistic license if you will, they look good and help to give a unit feel to the figures.

I opted for a palette of muted browns and greys as opposed to the white coats of the infantry as I felt it more appropriate for these troops.

As for the horses, these were all painted in the same three stage method which I generally use but with quite a few washes and extra work thrown in. I used a photographic book for reference; The Ultimate Horse by Elwyn Hartley Edwards, I found it really helped in matching the colours and getting these to look life like.

I might also add a standard bearer at some point, the obvious choice would be that of Lord Dacre of Flodden there's a thought, i'll get the French campaign army finished first!

So there we go, I hope you like these and they spur you on to get painting.



  1. Lovely looking figures, those subdued colours work a treat.


  2. Lovely work Stuart, well done.


  3. They are realy splendid Stuart - spot on for the lighter spears and the added shields just set them off - they look like an earlier version of the Elizabethan woodcuts that i've seen of border horse. looking forward to painting these castings myself.
    Very nice work :)

  4. As always, amazing painting work. Congratulations!


  5. Top work Stuart.

    You have done an excellent job on both the horseflesh and their respective grizzly companions.