Sunday, 8 January 2017

The 'Armour' Theme is Now Up for Viewing!

 Hello All!

Well, the first Theme Round is now up for viewing!

This fortnight's theme is 'Armour' and we had 57 participants submit entries for your enjoyment. In the gallery you will see tanks, knights, mechs and more. It is a veritable clanking smorgasbord of glasis, turrets, visors and plates. 

Please click on the 'Bonus Theme' link in the navigation bar above and enjoy all the efforts of the participants.

Also, remember to take time to vote for your favourite entries. You can vote for as many as you like. The top three in votes will get additional points added on to their total for the round.



As to myself, I've returned to the Italian Wars with a vignette of Francis I of France overseeing the investment of Pavia, October 1524. 

Francis is seen here with his helmet under his arm, discussing the proposed dispositions of the French siege with one of his advisors, Montmorency, Marshal of France. The two men have recently arrived in front of the city and have placed a map of Pavia on a makeshift table made from a wagon wheel set on a tree stump. A pair of Francis' hunting dogs, Alaunts (a breed now sadly extinct), are at his side.  His banner-bearer stands at the rear, holding the Royal Standard. Francis' attendants have brought out a stool with a refreshment of wine in pewter goblets.

Francis' figure is roughly based on a oil on wood painting from an unknown artist which was done within a few years of the battle. He is depicted wearing gold armour with a red surcoat emblazoned with a central cross. 

I kept the red surcoat, but instead painted him in his tournament armour, which is detailed with representations of fleur de lis on the knees, elbows and helmet (which, of course, nobody can see due to the placement of the figures...). Francis' armour can be seen today at the musée de l’Armée, Les Invalides. 

The figures of Francis and his knights are from the very talented Oliver James over at Steel Fist Miniatures.  These were part of a Kickstarter and are now available on his website.

The two Alaunts were sculpted by Steve May as a small commission for Simon over at le Jay Emprins, who kindly provided me with a couple sets (Thanks Simon!).

Alaunts at the kill of a wild boar from The Grimami Breviary 1490
The tree stump, wagon wheel, stool, wine bottle and goblets I printed off on my 3D printer (I LOVE that thing).

Francis' brave banner is from Pete's Flags.

As a historical proscript, the French siege of Pavia went on too long and a Imperialist relief force was dispatched to attempt to raise the siege. After a bold night march, the Spanish Imperial army smashed Francis' forces on 24th February 1525. As the ultimate disgrace, Francis himself was captured and sent to Spain as a prisoner to negotiate his own release.


Now, please go look at the gallery and enjoy the wonderful entries for our 'Armour' theme!