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PAUL BAKER'S Somalis
Painting Again, after researching some images the skin tone of the Somalis it was almost identical and very dark. The colour I chose for the skin was Bay Brown number 42 from the Wargames Foundry triad paint system. I used the triad but mixed intermediate colours so A / A + B 50/50 mix / B / B + C 50/50 mix / C. For the cloth again, I used Wargames Foundry paint system, but this time used Boneyard number 9. Because I was painting over a black undercoat the base colour had to be applied a couple of times then layered in the deepest creases. Boneyard B was used for the mid tones and Boneyard C for the highlight, such a nice combination. For the hair I used Plaka black as the base and then dry brushed it by adding increasing amounts of Plaka grey to the mix. I tried to give some more variety to the figures by using various brown colours for all the leather items e.g. sandals and necklaces. The weapons were painted using Wargames Foundry Spearshaft number 13 triad but for all the bows and some firearms and spears I went a little lighter on the highlight by adding Plaka white to Spearshaft C. Cavalry After making all the head swaps for the riders I sorted the 3 different horse castings and paired up the riders to the horses trying not to duplicate the pairings. The riders were mounted on stands and assigned a number which was written on the temporary base for the horse so that they could be reunited when the painting was completed. Horses The horses were undercoated using Humbrol 33 matt black then given a base coat of Humbrol 61 matt flesh and for some of the horses I added some Humbrol 34 matt white and others a touch of Humbrol matt hull red. These horses were left to dry for a couple of days to go off. To get the horse tones I used various oil paints (Burnt umber, Vandyke brown and black) these were thinned with Winsor & Newton Sansodor the more thinner the lighter the horse colouring after whipping off the excess with a tissue. Again, the horses were left to dry for a couple of days. I painted all the furniture again with Humbrol 33 whilst this paint was in the palette I added a lot of thinners and applied this mixture along the furniture to give a shadow I also used this thinned paint and applied it part way up the legs of the horses. I gave most of the horse’s various socks on their legs (not too many with all four legs with socks as they are rare) and snips, stars and stripes to their faces. All the hooves with socks were painted using Plaka Yellow brown and given a highlight. Basing To add some variation to the horses the horse furniture was painted using different browns and for the saddle cloths they were painted in various dark colours. Once again looking on the Internet at pictures of Somalia of this time the ground is covered with some large rocks and is scattered with dark coloured bushes and not much grass at all, so I tried to recreate this by using large marble chips as rocks. For the bushes I used Jarvis “Countryside Scenics” premier hedge and bush foliage dark green. The foliage was attached to the textured base with PVA glue then a diluted PVA solution was injected into the bush and left to dry.
List 18. Somali 1897
Already having two armies (Pygmy and Force Publique) for the Death in the Dark Continent rule system I was looking at different sort of army to play with. I looked at the figures available from various manufacturers and after a long deliberation I opted for Mark Copplestone’s Somalis now available from North Star. I looked at the figures available from the website and felt that there were not many different poses because in the Somali army list (List 18) I needed a lot of figures because they were skirmishers and don’t cost many points per base. I worked out on paper a 300 point army plus a few more bases to allow me some variations in the list building. I decided that I would order from all the range, even the archers, which I had no intention of using the figures in the army, but I wanted the different head variants for me to do multiple head-swaps. When the figures (cavalry and foot) arrived, which are sent randomly I sorted them all out into the same poses and eliminated all those figures that I couldn’t swap their heads, which were mainly from the riflemen packs. 
I then took one figure from every pose then matched all the others into pairs avoiding any duplication and secured them with an elastic band. Then one pair at a time I removed the heads with a jeweller’s fret saw then using my Dremel drill I drilled both the heads and bodies with a drill bit the size of a paper clip whilst wearing protective glasses of course. I swapped the heads and secured them with super glue and bicarbonate of soda. When the super glue had dried I filed the joint down smoothly, so you could not see the join. Although this procedure was very time consuming when done numerous times the effect was amazing. I paid particular attention to the spearmen as from the images I had seen they carried numerous spears, so while I had the Dremal drill out I drilled a hole in the hand holding their shield on some of them to accommodate a second spear. I normally close the spear hand up with pliers and drill through to give the wire spear some stability when being glued in place. When the spear was secured I gently bent the arm into a slightly different position.
Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone.
Somalis, Untrained Skirmishers with Muskets, with Untrained Light Horse with Breechloaders behind.
Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone.
Somali Skirmishers with spears backed up by Light Horse with spears
Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone. Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone.
Midgan archers
Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone. Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone.
Somali Skirmishers with spears.
Once dry I painted the bushes all over with Games Workshop Castellan Green then gave them a heavy dry brush with Games Workshop Elysian Green then lightly dry brushed with Games Workshop Nurgling Green.
Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone. Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone. Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone. Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone. Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone.
Somalis, Untrained Skirmishers with Muskets.
Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone. Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone. Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone.
Somalis, Untrained Light Horse with Breechloaders.
Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone. Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone. Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone. Copplestone Castings Designed by Mark Copplestone.
Somali Light Horse with spears.