Saturday, November 30, 2013

1st Annual Turkey Shoot!

It was Thanksgiving and Mordecai was told to "go get a turkey." Seemed simple enough...

So begins the rules for Turkey Shoot! It's a one person game in which the player assumes the role of a Pilgrim who, as the name suggests, has to shoot a turkey for dinner.

Yes. It's a Thanksgiving wargame!

After stumbling across these rules about two months back, I knew I wanted to make it a new Thanksgiving tradition. I rushed to find suitable models, which was more of a challenge than you might think. But after scrounging the internet for a while I found exactly what I needed. The turkey was completed with plenty of time to spare, as well as some of the necessary terrain. The Pilgrim, however, was put on the back burner due to school and so I didn't have a chance to finish him before Thanksgiving. But that sure didn't stop me from playing!

So without further ado, I give you the 1st Annual Turkey Shoot!

Mordecai was walking through the woods with his musket at the ready. There has to be a turkey out here somewhere, he thought to himself. The Pilgrim had been at it for hours and was about ready to turn back when he came upon a clearing and saw a very welcome sight...

A turkey! Unfortunately, however, the bird sensed Mordecai's presence and began to scurry away.

To his good fortune, however, the turkey emerged from behind the trees just a few feet away from the Pilgrim. Mordecai couldn't believe his luck! With a clear shot, he leveled his musket, took careful aim, and fired.

The powder flashed and a satisfying crack filled the air. The turkey was knocked over and Mordecai smiled to himself. But to his disbelief, however, the turkey got up immediately took flight. 

Again, however, the bird stopped just a few feet away from the Pilgrim. After quickly reloading, Mordecai fired another shot.

Sulfuric smoke again fired the air, but this time Mordecai completely missed. The turkey took flight and vanished from sight.

Looks like Mordecai and his family wouldn't be getting turkey tonight after all...

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Die Göbbla Göbbla Tørkey

With Thanksgiving fast approaching, I felt compelled to do something appropriate for the holiday. I therefore present, as the Swedish Chef would say, "Die Göbbla Göbbla Tørkey!"

Or, just a turkey.

He's a Pegasus mini I picked up on eBay for cheap (along with three other others....there may need to be an army of turkeys at some point in the future). I based him on a 40mm round base and then added the appropriate scenery: a rock (pebble), fallen branch (twig), and autumn leaves (colored birch seeds).

After studying several images of wild turkeys, I settled on this golden-brown color scheme. I had never noticed the purplish color of their heads before, and it was a challenge to try and match it to the photos. But I'm happy with how it turned out.

Overall, I don't think this was too bad for a first attempt. The turkey itself is alright, but I'm exceedingly pleased with how the base turned out! I've been really aching for a chance to try out these "autumn leaves."

Also, I discovered that there is a Thanksgiving wargame out there called "Turkey Shoot!" 

Yes...this exists. 

The rules were a little hard to come by. All the links to it were dead, but through some careful navigating of the internet I was able to find and download them. It's a one player game that is, quite literally, about a Pilgrim trying to shoot a turkey for dinner.  

And yes, I do fully intend on making this a new holiday tradition! 

And in closing, I must echo the words of the Swedish Chef:

"Børk! Børk! Børk!"

And after this, I will be returning to the diorama. I just needed a little break from it before moving on to the next phase.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

"Many of those trees were my friends!"

Wargaming terrain is something I've never really done a whole lot of. I suppose I've never really had the interest or wherewithal to work on it until now. But after seeing what awesome work my friend Ben has done with trees (here and here), I've been inspired to steal the idea try it out for myself.

Here are the results!

The project started off with a pack of Woodland Scenics evergreen trees and round wood bases from Michaels. After sanding the edges smooth, the "trunks" were glued to the base, which in turn was coated with Golden's coarse pumice gel (I love this stuff!). I managed to find some twigs in the back yard that looked like fallen branches, so they were added to the base as well. Everything was allowed to dry overnight before priming.

I then coated the "dirt" with a dark coat of brown paint, which was then drybrushed with a lighter color. The grass was then added and the whole thing was sprayed with a sealer. The trees were then finally glued into the stumps, and everything was good to go!

Here are the trees in comparison to a 28mm Warlord Napoleonic Polish Vistula officer. Pretty good, if I do say so myself!

Overall, this was a fun and quick little project. I can't wait to do some more of these in the very near future! They'll be done with different styles of trees to add a bit of variety.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Civil War Medical Diorama: Part VIII

What a productive afternoon! I was able to stop by the Lee-Fendall House after work and get some significant work done on the diorama. This assistant curator/model maker/nerd is quite happy!

It all started with sawing the edges off the railroad tracks. This was essential because they had to fit on the board diagonally due to its odd size. Of course, however, I realized after the fact that I wanted them to go the other direction. 

As the great Homer Simpson says, "Do'h!" 

But upon reflection (and some mild swearing to myself), I realized this was okay and that it actually worked out better. It won't look like the tracks and the road intersect. So I glued them in place and set to work on the trees. Many of them were strategically placed to conceal the staples in the board. I'm thinking I may go out and get another pack or two of trees just to thicken the "woods" up a bit.

Then gravel was added to the train tracks, which was a fairly messy process. The gravel is very loose and so I used a spray adhesive to hold everything in place. Hopefully it worked, but we won't really know until it comes time to move the diorama.

I've been working on the railroad all the live-long day...

After all that, I started working on the dirt roads and finished them in less than 15 minutes.

This is what we had at the end of the day! 

In my opinion, it looks far better than it did on opening night. Seeing this in the museum at its present stage makes me feel a lot better about the whole project. I've always been very critical of my own work (as I imagine most artists are in one way or another). But I'm really liking how the diorama is progressing. 

I just wish I could have gotten to this point a few days ago but, as the French say, c'est la vie.

The next big goal is to get the train cars painted, assembled, and installed. They're sitting on the dining room table, counter, and sideboard (in various pieces). My goal is to have them done by next weekend.