A review of 2014 in the Woolshed

This has been a pretty good year in the Woolshed despite a few hiccups along the way. I had a painting schedule for 2014 that I tried to stick to for about a month and then things sort of went down hill from there.  I ran into a bit of a painters block at one stage a few months back and had 2-3 months where I didn’t touch a paint brush. My life was going all over the place – my latest mid-life crisis apparently.  Things have settled down now and there is a balance.

Dad investiture
Dad receiving the Military Medal from Governor General Sir Bernard Freyberg.

The most important thing that happened this year in my life was that my father died in May.  He was a veteran of the New Zealand 2nd Division. Miss the old bugger.  He is being brought back to New Zealand for final interment later this month.  I think his death affected me more than I thought and was one of the factors that led me into a pretty deep depression there for a while.

I have to thank my war gaming and modelling friends who gave me so much support this year when I was down in the dumps.

On the painting and modelling front I made more progress than I thought I had. I started a new project on a whim.


I started this year with a hiss and a roar on Napoleonics. I was meaning to get my Anglo-Spanish 1808-09 army completed. Fat chance of that as it turned out. Bloody Zulus.

I knocked up a bunch of casualty bases for gaming to replace dice and markers as a method of recording casualties. Some cavalry casualties, some Perry British casualties and a bunch of French ones.

My British Cavalry Brigade got started. Two Elite Miniature regiments  – one each of heavy cavalry and light cavalry. I was particularly happy with how these turned out.

I added to my staff and also some mounted officers. Anglo Spanish command, British Brigade generals, some mounted British officers and Spanish Guerrilla Leaders.

My friend Roly (Dressing the Lines Blog) gave me some Front Rank Spanish guerrillas that added to my expanding irregular force.

My British infantry force also expanded by a number of battalions. Royal Marines, the 85th Bucks Light Infantry, the 50th West Kents, the 95th Rifles,  a battery of Royal Foot Artillery, and the fictional Loamshire Volunteers all joined the ranks of my army.

One of the most popular posts I did this year was posting 28mm colours for the fictional South Essex Regiment from the Sharpe series.

I had a few good games this year but the best one was the multi-player Black Powder Big Lepizig Game at Call to Arms, Wellington, in August.

On the Napoleonic painting front I managed about 9 complete units and another couple of units worth of odds and sods figures – command and casualties.


The Anglo-Zulu War of 1879. It has grabbed me and I am really enjoying it.   It sort of started when I painted two Eureka Rorke’s Picnic Teddy Bears as gifts for my girlfriend’s daughter at her wedding (yes I am cheap – I know).

Since then I have knocked off six 36 figure Zulu regiments –  iNdluyengwe, iNdlondo, InGobamakhosi, uMcijo, uDududu and iSangqu.   I have another seven or eight to go to finish all the regiments at Isandlwana.

The British have not been neglected and I have painted five companies of the 1st battalion, 24th Foot.  These are 16 figure units.
A Company, C Company, E Company, F Company and H Company.

For later war games I have a squadron of British 17th Lancers.

A unit of Boer volunteers to help the British fight their old Zulu foe.

The first of the British native troops I will enlist was a company of Natal Native Contingent.

To give the British some fire support I have added some Royal Artillery.  Actually these were the first models I painted for this project.

And of course both sides needed some command figures to lead them into battle. Some British officers and Zulu Command.

Last but not least a casualty vignette painted under the influence of too much red wine.

So as far as totals go – A total of 16-17 units comprising

Zulus – About 230 models painted.

British – About 130 figures


Not much on this this year apart from posting some more card decks for The Rules With No Name.


Managed to get the last lance of Bretonnian Questing Knights finished that I have had sitting about for ages. I might clean up and repaint my son’s old Orc and Goblin horde this year.


Knocked up some more Conflix-like buildings. I have a whole bunch of material  sitting around to make more of these – they will form part of my pirate town when that project gets a rocket underneath it and kicked off.


I got on a starship deckplan kick about mid-way through the year and spent an awful lot of time on Microsoft Paint making plans for merchants and other small star-ships. I still have another dozen or so unfinished plans that I will get done and posted this year. They were very popular and generated a lot of hits and downloads.

I also posted some fantasy maps I had drawn. These were also popular with fellow role-playing nerds.

My one and only attempt at drawing a comic – a report from a role-playing session in the mid-80s. Judge Dredd Part 1, Part 2, Part 3


Real Life happened too. There was Lambing Time on the Lifestyle Block, and earlier in the year I was busy making jam and chutney from our own fruit.


So this year across all the periods I game I managed approximately 25 units completed. Not too bad. One every two weeks on average. Here’s hoping for a productive year this year. Finish those Anglo-Zulus, finish those Anglo-Spaniards and make a start on the Pirates.

2 thoughts on “A review of 2014 in the Woolshed”

  1. That is an impressive body of work Brian. It is amazing what you can achieve by just plugging away steadily at a task. I have just finished my annual tally and was pleasantly surprised – but I think I need to prevent her-indoors from seeing the tally lest she should figure out the cost and reason that she needs to spend a similar amount!


    1. I am still painting a lot of stuff I brought years ago. When it comes to my Napoleonics I have about a decade of lead buying to catch up on 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s