Dated: March 24, 2009
We had our Aspern-workshop last weekend. It was a great meeting, 10 guys sitting together having fun painting figures, organising stands of units , have some beers etc. .-) These were really short nights so I hope I am fit enough to write something with sense now!
We organised all the painted figures, glued them on plates in the correct formations and worked on the design of the village. Ingo made the Church from scratch and beside this several houses. The others worked on some houses before, so that our village is at the moment around 30 houses. Aspern had around 70 houses in 1809. Now we want to glue all the houses on bases and work some gardens etc. around it. Later adding the figures in close combat around the buildings to bring life into it. The next part was to glue the units in the formations on the plates. On plate of 35x25 cm is big enough to glue a complete Austrian bataillon-mass on it. Around 850 figures on such a small space looks like an old Spanish Tercio. We finished three of this "squares" which we will put on the plate. Two more will follow, but these will show only the first five ranks and with them the diorama will end at this place. There is no other chance because we can't paint so many Austrians. One of this "half-masses" will be the Bohemian legion. Uwe Ehmke sculpted some more poses of this very special unit.
So we need "just" 3000 Austrians for the mass-formation which we nearly finished. All the others will go as defenders for Aspern and the running guys will come to the rescue of the garrisson. There is a nice painting of Austrian lines running for Aspern. Here again Uwe Ehmke is working on some poses of running officers and drummers to go with the plastics. The French will attack in column formation up the mainroad through the village, while the Voltigeurs and light infantry will work itself through the houses and gardens.
The biggest challenge for me at the moment is the cavalry attack on the mass formations. I've painted a complete squadron of Austrian Chevaulegers (170 men strong) mostly from HAT with a sprinkle of metals. The formation has a wide of 1,35 Meters in two ranks. Three more squadrons have to follow, will be a busy time for me… The first squadron will run at an ankle of nearly 90% into the advancing French Chasseur a Cheval. The French attack the bataillon-masses with two brigades, each of three regiments in column formation. Two of Chasseurs and the third one Hessian Chevaulegers and Baden Dragoons in each brigade.
While the first regiment of each column attacks the squares, while the second regiment is taken by the Austrians in the flank. The third regiment is following. So the challenge is to have the first regiment breaking on the bataillon-masses, riding around them etc. like the French at Waterloo. The second regiment on the right taken bei the Austrians is the biggest challenge. We will have a cavalry fight here, 700 Austrians breaking into the formation of 400 French Chasseur a Cheval. A lot of single combats etc. I don't know of any diorama ever done showing this.
The third regiment is coming in formation after them.
We've painted the Hessians and the Baden Dragoons and have around 300 Chasseur a Cheval as well as 250 Austrian Chevaulegers. All in all we need 1000 Chevaulegers and 1600 Chasseur a Cheval. Let's hope we can go as close as possible to the original number. You see I have big plans as usual, but you can see from my writings that we are in a high mood now and I hope we can make it. It is very exciting to create this diorama. I can't wait to start on conversions for the close combat tonight. When I have time I will send photos from the weekend around, to let you share the project.
Sorry for the long mail, it is pure happiness and excitement at the moment with me:-)))
Austrian artillery, mostly converted from HAT Bavarian infantry. And the first testshot of the ammunition wagon
What we were able to put on the table. First planning.
Timo, Schmitty and Ingo - first thoughts
Micha and Timo - at the beginning they smiled:-)
Ingo, Klaus and Rainer impressed by Ingo's artillery
The first unit I glued on the plates. A squadron of the Klenau Chevaulegers, 170 men strong. Some NCO's and officers behind the line are missing, the horsemen I painted over the weekend. This is one of four squadrons we need.
The Church of Aspern - Scratchbuild by Ingo
Some houses for the village
In the end all the houses should be like small vignettes put together to make a complete village.
One of the barricades we will put into the streets.
Klaus busy painting Austrians to complete the first bataillon mass.
Ingo and Rainer painting reinforcements
A lot of work to do for me. The horses are sprued with airbrush. Makes it much easier in the beginning
Myself searching the right figures for the formations in my stock
Strange, this photo was made early in the mornig after I had 3 1/2 hours sleep, no breakfast and no shower...
Many thanks to Mr. Wild.
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