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bangle

14 1:35 German Tram Figures by Bangle

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Having very recently felt flushed with success at painting up 2 figures for my husband without making them look like googly eyed monsters, I suddenly went crazy and agreed to paint 14 (yes 14!) figures for our next model making project. We're building the MiniArt tram and we're making a nice non-military diorama to go with it. I bought the MiniArt german sitting civilians, tram crew with passengers, the 1930's-40's German civilians and Frau Muller with her bicycle from Master Box. So far i've discovered that 1:35th figures are terribly tricky and photographing them is even harder! I'm doing my best to replicate the images on the box art (I will for ever more despair that MiniArt decided that one particular lady would look lovely in a tartan coat!). I'm just less than half way through, here's the line up so far:-

 

First we have the old lady from the 30's to 40's set, now in the images she's supposed to be looking shocked looking at bombed out stuff, but as trams aren't really all that shocking I turned her into a smoker with the addition of a little brass rod. First she looked like a scary gremlin, but I fixed that eventually.

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She's standing with her one armed friend, who was actually the first to get painted, he actually has an arm and a suitcase now. I actually enjoyed giving him pinstripe trousers, which are surprisingly effective. I'll have to include a completed picture of him at some point when I can be bothered to faff with the camera again. Next I painted the man I call the grumpy gentleman with the mustache.

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The next one is my favorite so far, I added a little pattern to her headscarf which was fun.

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Finally my latest completed figure was the trickiest, yes it's the lady in the tartan coat, this was horribly tricky to achieve but I think I just about pulled it off. Irritatingly cameras have far better vision than we do!

 

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I'm working on another couple of figures at the moment, another lady and an old gentleman. I'm hoping by this evening i'll be another figure down!

 

 

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They look excellent. Although it looks as if the lady with the tartan coat has put on a couple of kilos since posing for the box illustration 😁

 

I'd love to see a step-by-step of how you painted the face and clothes to achieve such a realistic look.

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Nicely done! The secret to tartan is slow and steady with well thinned paint, not that you need to hear that as she looks great! I think my favourite is the seated lady; simple with subtle colouring and nicely finished.

 

What paints do you use?

 

Christian, exiled to africa

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I agree, the tartan lady does indeed look like she's put on a bit of weight! I can't really say my method is my own, I just followed the instructions in a book I bought 'The paint guide for figures of WWII' by Joaquin Garcia Gazquez and they came out really well! I was quite impressed as I have been a pretty poor figure painter before then. I didn't use his color suggestions though, I prefer different tones to what he uses. The core idea I got from his book is to look at the shadows and highlights that naturally form on the figure before it's painted and gradually shade based on that. I found I could tell if i've gone wrong as i'm going along as it really stands out! Also I learnt it's very easy to overdo it!

 

I use vallejo model color paints, a fairly recent thing for me as i've only just converted to acrylics from enamel for hand-brushing so i'm still experimenting with using them. On the whole a lot of this is new ground for me so i'm still learning a lot! I find each figure has a new challenge in it somewhere. For my latest figure it's blonde hair, I had to do a lot of trial and error to find a selection that I was happy with. She's nearly finished now so i'll have some pictures up soon.

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Very nice set of figures.

 

I think the old lady is my favourite. Reminds me of my grand mother, always dressed as if she was going to a funeral and you never saw her without a cigarette in her mouth. She used to light one match a day, and every cigarette was lit from the one she was about to put out. Lived to the ripe old age of 98.

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10 hours ago, Crayons said:

Very nice set of figures.

 

I think the old lady is my favourite. Reminds me of my grand mother, always dressed as if she was going to a funeral and you never saw her without a cigarette in her mouth. She used to light one match a day, and every cigarette was lit from the one she was about to put out. Lived to the ripe old age of 98.

:lol: It's nice to know I can have a little bit of realism into my diorama, I believe the lady in question is based off a well known photo of the time. I'm quite impressed your grandmother managed to live to such an age with all that smoking, she must have been very active!

 

Today's progress involves completing another sitting lady, I think she's the type who is unnerved by strangers! I also took a picture of my gentleman with the suitcase, he's the first one I made of the series and I think I may have improved since I started.

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You're going to tell me that those pinstripes on Mr. Suitcase are free hand painted aren't you?

 

Yes, my grand mother (Edith) was a very active woman, played life until the end with a full bag of marbles. Went to sleep one night and that was it. I do recall she had a walking stick, but it was used as a short, sharp poke to the ribs if you did not act in a polite and respect manner.

 

 

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Very nice, particularly the texture/pattern of her coat and  clear improvement between first and last. Keep this up and he might need a repaint!

 

Thanks for the info. I also use Vallejo and find them a great joy to use once the foibles have been worked out.

 

On-On!

 

christian, exiled to africa

 

 

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Some of the nicest 1/35 figures I've seen on here.  I think you've found your vocation.  Looking forward to seeing more of your figures ....

 

Best wishes

 

BillyD

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2 hours ago, Crayons said:

You're going to tell me that those pinstripes on Mr. Suitcase are free hand painted aren't you?

Of course they are :) Your grandmother sounds like she was a real character! I'm not sure i'd enjoy a sharp poke to the ribs though!

 

2 hours ago, wyverns4 said:

Very nice, particularly the texture/pattern of her coat and  clear improvement between first and last. Keep this up and he might need a repaint!

 

Thanks for the info. I also use Vallejo and find them a great joy to use once the foibles have been worked out.

 

On-On!

 

christian, exiled to africa

 

 

Hopefully not, I might just hide him somewhere! I also like Vallejo though the very first time I used them I hated them as I tried to sand a painted surface and was horrified to see it peel off as rubbery globs. My paints went back in the drawer for a couple of years and I learnt a valuable lesson!

 

Thanks BillyD, I feel like i'm discovering something new each time I paint at the moment. It's been a while since I felt like my model making abilities have taken a leap forward so i'm enjoying the experience. I have a 1/16th scale French figure with my Takom tank so I might give him a go when i've finished these.

 

I've made some significant progress on another figure today as it's my day off so hopefully it will be made by tomorrow.

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One more figure down, I'm half way through now! This is the old gentleman who won't really seem all that complete till I paint his co-conspirator lady friend to chat to. I'm not as happy with my effort on this one, but not enough to re-do him. His trousers were a complete pain to get the right colour, I messed up and had to change the shade twice! I'm happy with the colour now though, my selection of blues is a bit limited so it took me a while to get the mix right, Prussian blue is a very strong colour to work with!

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Superb painting on these figures, Are the best I have seen from some top figure painters,have seen these figures before and every time I see the man in the suit and moustache reminds me of Hitler.Really Enjoying your work.Cheers.

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17 hours ago, Jim Wasley said:

Superb painting on these figures, Are the best I have seen from some top figure painters,have seen these figures before and every time I see the man in the suit and moustache reminds me of Hitler.Really Enjoying your work.Cheers.

In the words of Yellow Beard "I'm in disguise, you stupid tart."

 

Bangle, that last guy looks like he should be driving that BR86 train you were working on.

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Thanks guys! I'm sure Hitler's mustache was very popular in the day :lol:. I'm sure that's one fashion that will never come around again!

 

I didn't see it before but I believe you're right crayons, I was looking at figures for my poor neglected BR86 the other day and there's not much to choose from. It's a shame he's not standing! He'd look just perfect leaning over the door of his cab. I looked at the LZ models figures and they look really odd to me, kind of chunky and bow legged somehow, like their hips are in the wrong place. The other figures available from CMK look the complete opposite, all spindly with huge hands and strange trousers! The man shoveling coal looks fine though. Maybe i'll look into it sometime, I do want to finish the loco some day.

 

My next figure is in progress, i've had a little break but i'm back on them. For this one I seem to have accidentally made my old lady look like David Dickinson :lol:. I should be finished today so you'll see what I mean soon!

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Give her a coat of Tamiya clear orange and she would be a ringer for Dickinson!

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33 minutes ago, bhouse said:

Give her a coat of Tamiya bright orange and she would be a ringer for Dickinson!

Fixed that for ya ;)

 

They're nice natural-looking figures, both in the original sculpting and execution.  Is there a tram to go with? :)

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Thanks guys, I'm sure she would!

 

There is indeed a tram figure to go with the figures, David (husband) is busy on the construction, it's a joint project so i'll be contributing to that too. After the figures are mostly done (some will have to do without arms or legs till certain parts are constructed), i'm going to be on wood effect among other things and anything that happens to be my particular strength. David's much better at airbrushing than I am so the exterior will mostly be him. It's the MiniArt tram so it's super fiddly with plastic that likes to fracture when dropped so he's working hard but coming along slowly. This picture was taken last week so there's been some progress since then. It's only one of many test fits as MiniArt likes to make it difficult!

 

Thanks Kev, i've been having a good look at some of the other stuff, I think I prefer the Master Box as it seems much more crisp, particularly the faces. The MiniArt sitting figures and tram crew are really good though. I wasn't as keen on the German Civilians set, I had a bit of a fight with the legs on the tartan lady, I don't like how the legs go into holes on a plate and the break down wasn't as good. The other two sets break off at the shoulder joint and natural points where you'd expect a seam, those ones didn't and their faces aren't as clear. That said, it was a complete nightmare getting the sitting lady in the green dress to cross her legs without looking like she'd dislocated one. I noticed MiniArt don't even try on theirs! I can't complain too much though, all their figures seem nicely proportioned all round and the detail is there.

 

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These are quite superb. Loads of potential there too, they're certainly better than the passengers in the Airfix Type B Bus for example.

 

John

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4 hours ago, bangle said:

Thanks Kev, i've been having a good look at some of the other stuff, I think I prefer the Master Box as it seems much more crisp, particularly the faces. The MiniArt sitting figures and tram crew are really good though. I wasn't as keen on the German Civilians set, I had a bit of a fight with the legs on the tartan lady, I don't like how the legs go into holes on a plate and the break down wasn't as good. The other two sets break off at the shoulder joint and natural points where you'd expect a seam, those ones didn't and their faces aren't as clear. That said, it was a complete nightmare getting the sitting lady in the green dress to cross her legs without looking like she'd dislocated one. I noticed MiniArt don't even try on theirs! I can't complain too much though, all their figures seem nicely proportioned all round and the detail is there.

 

 

 

I've not got any experience of building Miniart, but others have said similar things, they do make such interesting subjects though.  I do agree MB are very well molded better thn Tamiya but about the same assembly.  I have built Bravo-6 they're resin and in another league, they take a bit of cleaning up to get rid of pouring plugs which can be rather large but they go together beautifully, only down side is they're not cheap two figures are about £18!    

 

Worth it if you want that something special.

 

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I've never heard of Bravo-6 but I suppose that's no surprise seeing I haven't really been into making figures until recently. They do look like they paint well, it's just a shame there's a fairly limited choice when it comes to civilians across the board, unless you want a refugee, a lady of the night or a pin-up of course! I suppose it's supply and demand though, most dioramas tend to be military.

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What would be nice also was if the likes of Hornet started making replacement male/female civilian heads for the civilian figure sets that are being produced. I know they make a country farmer set and a Volkssturm set, but that is about for civilians as far as I know.

 

I shall refrain from making any comments about how a good head...................

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