Lara’s Theme

So, one of the things to do at a game convention is to visit the vendor booths. Sometimes you can find good deals or find things long out of production. Sometimes you just find nothing at all. The piles of old second-hand miniatures have been replaced with rows & rows of plastic miniatures – some look good & some look like cheap plastic toys from a 50s era Five & Dime store (don’t ask how I know).

The Lone Star Game Expo was held the week after ReaperCon, so there were not as many vendors this year. The bright spot, in a sea of clicky plastic, was Frontline Games – I can never remember if they are from Ft. Worth, Arlington or Grand Prairie. Anyway, they are the source for all things WWII in 28mm (they also carry some Ancients & fantasy which sometimes gets lost in the sea of WWII merchandise). They had tubs & tubs full of miniatures – and next to a tub of WWII Soviets, I found gold, a tub of Copplestone’s Back of Beyond Russians. Always on the lookout for good female figures, I picked up the pack “Bolshevik Heroines” & enough Partisans to build a 20 figure unit.

Ready for the primer coat.

I wasn’t going to paint them right away…. Honest! My intention was to get around to painting them sometime around Christmas or the first part of next year. That lasted for a couple of weeks. This past Thursday, I opened all of the packs, cleaned them, removed any flash, based them, primed them and gave them a good gray undercoat & white Zenithal highlight.

Friday was spent painting. Figures sculpted by Mark Copplestone always paint up nice and have a great deal of character – which I was about to discover.

Primed with Black Gesso.

As I held up one of the heroines and peered through my opti-visor (my eyes are old, ok) to decide on a color scheme, I made an astonishing discovery – the hair, the eyes, the face – OMG! I was looking at Julie Christie.

Julie Christie? You’re not that young, are you? Julie Christie played Lara in the 1965 epic, Dr. Zhivago. I had just become a teenager when the movie was released. For the next few years every Jr. High & High School band played “Lara’s Theme” at football games & concerts. Every star did a cover of the song from Andy Williams to Roy Clark.

The only way you didn’t know about Dr. Zhivago was if you lived under a rock or lived in the Soviet Union where both the book & the film were banned. Bonus Fact: Did you know there was a CIA program to smuggle copies of Dr. Zhivago into the Soviet Union?

Back to the figures, I finished painting the four heroines and am close to finishing the 16 Parisans. Flocked the bases & sealed the figures and here we are. I’ve spent about 8 to ten hours total prepping and painting – not counting the time spent waiting for the Gesso to “cure” and matte varnish to dry.

Undershade with Gray Ink.

The newest thing I’ve done is that I mixed my own flesh tones using the flesh starter set from Warcolours – Warcolours paint is different in that it is gel based. This made making glazes easier & it was very easy to wet blend on the figures.

The Count

I probably won’t meet the goal of painting 520 figures this year, but trying to make that goal has been fun. Especially since the goal got me to paint more miniatures. The total now stands at 238 figures painted this year.

  • 40 28mm Fantasy Figures.
  • 67 10mm Seven Years War Figures.
  • 57 28mm Old West Figures.
  • 20 28mm Colonial Era Figures.
  • 4 28mm Russian Civil War Figures.
  • 32 20mm Spanish Civil War Figures.
  • 18 28mm Science Fiction Figures.
  • Rebased 11 28mm Science Fiction Figures.
  • 35 Terrain Pieces.

In all honesty, the figure I think looks like Julie Christie, may not look like Julie Christie at all – but if it isn’t, it’s awfully darn close. So close that I’m taking a closer look at Mr. Copplestone’s Russians to see if I can spot an Alec Guinness, Rod Steiger, Tom Courtenay or Omar Sharif!

As always, your comments are as good as gold – I just need to find out how to spend them! πŸ™‚ No animals, plants or floozies were harmed in the production of this post. However, an unsightly pile of unwashed dishes did appear next to the sink.


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