A Commonwealth Vignette

Or what to do with figures from a box set you didn’t use and desert base you opted to not use. The figures are from the Master Box 1/35 Commonwealth AVF Crew #MB3564. I used the four British crew to set the scene for my Honey diorama. What I didn’t use was the Sheik on his camel and the Sikh solider. Those three figures just didn’t seem to fit the narrative of a tank crew taking a break from the action, having laugh or two over a cup of tea!

The base, I originally built for my Rommel vignette, but when I placed the lone figure on the base, he seem too small for the size of the base, even with a small dune placed in the back half. That dune allowed me to place the Commonwealth solider at the right height to interact with the local camel rider.

For what did I do/learn technical section of this build, it was adding detail to the camel and rider.

The camels feet were just blobs, so I sanded them to shape and them filed the two “toes” onto each hoof. I also added some putty build up on the saddle to make it look more like it had some weight and actually sat on the camel, as opposed to being glued in place. No before pictures, I was too eager to get started and forgot, but it’s basically all the purple-brown part of the saddle.

I also added the reins to the camel, copper wire, masking tape and some free-hand painting is all rolled up into that bit. The solider’s rifle sling is the same, less the wire and was built in two pieces so that I could get the adjustment fold in place. And crafted the riding crop out of styrene rod – lots of slow easy sanding and shaping – for such a small item it really taxed my patience!

The rider was my first attempt at adding some depth to the opening of his robes. After practicing on an old figure’s arm, I decide against cutting the hands and feet off the model. Instead I use a combination of blades (straight and curved), and micro drills to open up the robes. This saved me from mangling the hands as well as no pinning. Without the hands and feet in place, the jobs may have been quicker,: not having to cut around the limbs and being able to use a Dremel would have been a bonus. Here’s the final results, before priming (sorry for the blurry pictures, but a camera phone can only focus so close):

Below are the vignette long shots:

And now some detail shots:

5 thoughts on “A Commonwealth Vignette

  1. Really neat Eric! and like Dave commented on your use of the blue sky I’m tying to get better at using the new country surrounds as backdrops instead of the old cardboard and hessian!

    Liked by 1 person

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