Sunday, 21 August 2016

Casualty Markers

Following last month's wargame I left with quite a few projects in mind; viewing friend's collections and discussing the hobby brought aspects to my attention that I had either not thought of at all or shelved for whatever reason so this is the first of those projects.

To begin I ordered some circular dial markers from Warbases and then set about kit bashing, sculpting and painting the following grim vignettes.

The first casualty to get the treatment was a Tudor Billman with a crossbow bolt lodged in his stomach.

The body, head and one arm are all from the Perry Ansar plastics box, the heads are particularly expressive and lend themselves quite well to the addition of a cap and hair. Some of the torsos feature wooden type necklaces which I've found when painted look rather convincingly like the neck of a gathered shirt. Furthermore, the bare feet are easy to add sculpted bear paw shoes typical of the early renaissance and the legs can easily be painted as hose / tights. All of the figures in the box also wear some sort of skirt which can be easily filed down and sculpted upon, it really takes a few stages off the base coat sculpting process that I have adopted.

This figure was in a running pose so I cut and re-positioned the legs then filed one side so it sat flat on the base. I then sculpted the base coat, added the arms and head then sculpted the hair and cap. The arm holding the bolt is from a WW2 plastic of which I've no idea where it came from or how I got it but needless to say it's an arm with a hand in the right position.

I'm really pleased with this one, everything came together well for a good composition and fun to paint, the face was just right for a pained expression.

This figure had a similar build to the first, the legs being cut and re-positioned before sculpting of the coat. The arms are from the Perry WOTR & Mercenaries boxed set. I cut a deep laceration across the face of the figure and wanted to try and express the dying moments; the base coat has been opened to get some air, he's writhing in pain pushing his shoe off and holding on to a final comfort of his rosary beads as he prepares for the end.

I painted the base coat in halved livery split by a white cross of St. Denis. Red and Yellow was the livery of Louis XII and, by coincidence two of the commanders of the Therouanne garrison as well as the city arms of Therouanne - future French infantry units are going to look rather uniform !

In the interest of balance I then set about creating another Tudor casualty, a Longbowman with a nasty open fracture on his foot, his sword broken he pleads with his assailant or perhaps a friend to come to his aid;

I used the same build process as earlier described, the body, arms and head with an expressive face are from the Ansar set, the pouch is from a Games Workshop set of Empire bowmen, quite useful things. I achieved the fracture by bending the foot to partial breaking point.

I spent quite a bit of time getting the painting right on this figure, the exposed bone took a while to get right and I thought I'd add a Tudor rose as some extra detail on the Cross of St. George on his chest. I decided against the arrows in the end as I felt they didn't really contribute much to the composition.

I then turned my attention back to the French, this time I used an Ansar figure which when viewed from the rear and sides did not require any work to make a base coat, the only sculpting therefore being the coat sleeves, hat and hair.

For this scene I positioned the arms and head to depict the dying moments of reaching for a lost objective / friend / weapon. The legs and arms are from the Foot Knights box, the legs not being from the same figure took a while to get right, the first two attempts were rather short looking chaps. The figure had a sash to which I added some GS. In comparison to the others, a fairly straightforward build. 

I was quite happy with the result though the combination of palette and large hat does add an air of a musketeer type appearance to this figure.

For the final vignette I wanted to try and create something a bit more intricate, inspiration came from a scene in the Pavia tapestry;

This was quite a difficult build, I had to make a few compromises but the overall feel is the same (I hope);

The Tudor assailant in base coat was constructed in the same manner as those previous, I tried numerous times to get the figure to kneel on the neck of his victim but just couldn't get it so I settled for kneeling on the side and holding the victim's head. One arm is from the Foot Knight set and the other from the command sprue in the Mercenaries set to which I only realised when painting does not have a gauntlet, so I painted a nice silver hand instead !

In using armoured arms I thought this gave the feel of a more senior yeoman with a bit of wealth so I thought I'd attempt a more contemporary bellows visor which turned out OK, I'll certainly give it further attempts for future units.

The victim's body was one of the figures in the WOTR set, the hands were quite hard to get right. Also given that the leaning figure obscures the victim I regretted picking a figure with a Brigandine as some fairly fiddly painting ensued.

Overall the completed scene is pretty good and useful to use as a casualty marker behind a French or Tudor unit.

So there we have it, inspiration projects part one, a nice set of casualty markers.

There certainly will be more of these, I really enjoyed thinking the scenes up and putting them together, I'll have to turn my attention to some cavalry at some point though I may have to ask Warbases if they can do some slightly larger markers.

The next inspiration project is already underway.

Bye for now



  1. Those are all quite brilliant Stuart - unique markers that each tell a story and reflect the horror of war too. The GS conversion sculpting keeps on reaching new levels too.

  2. Quite some grizzly vignettes you created there. But gawd, you're a magician with Greenstuff as well as the brush. Very well done... even if this means bad dreams for me tonight ;-)

  3. Very impressive work!

  4. I agree with others! This is inspired and brilliant work.

  5. Wonderful stuff as always Stuart!

  6. Fantastic conversions and painting!

  7. Absolutely stunning custombuilds !

    The last one are truly brilliant !!!

  8. Really great converting and painting, as always!
    Best Iain

  9. Amazing work. The last is full of drama.

  10. I think these are some of the most stunning conversions I've ever seen for any wargame. They are wonderful - and are real works of art. I know how hard it is to create casualty figures like this from next to nothing in the spares and bits box - but, Stuart, you've really excelled with these amazing figures! Simply fantastic!!!

  11. Superb! Though on the last one, I would have painted the sword-hand flesh instead of silver. Not only would it look better, but it would match the tapestry.