Yes I remember these now classic figures first from a plastic giveaway by Warlord Games. I remember them taking the wargame world by storm, being the first of the 28mm plastic revolution. The sexy Early Imperial Roman Legionary was literally given away "in the early part of this century" attached to a Wargames magazine (Wargames Illustrated I think). I painted it. It nearly killed me (tortured perhaps is a better word) but I finished it (see below, I was happy!):
You see I was mostly a WWII man at that time, my Greek ancients were metal and in 15mm - so what use had I for this 28mm giant? But it had a certain beguile about, a charm. I knew it was a wargame classic. Everybody else seemed to be painting hoards of 28mm plastic ancients; Early Imperial Romans fought Ancient Britons across the tabletop terrain in every club .. Warhammer Historical and then Impetus if I remember correctly, even DBA/DBM (or DBMM). Some day I said to myself, me too. A 'decade' later I picked up these Early Imperial Roman warriors (Starter Set) on eBay for a song, then paid as much as again for half the number of 'other' figures (cavalry and slingers) from Warlord Games in metal to finish off the required types (and I am still missing a Scorpion)! So back to the roots of things and the painting guide at the back of the Warhammer Historical Ancient Battles rules (see below):
"The Guide and my current Bible" to painting an Early Imperial Roman Legionary:
Following the instructions in the Warhammer Historical painting guidelines the figures were first undercoated white and then blocked in base colours - which I describe as "my teenager level of painting" just put some colour on the figures as a basic starting point, with no concept of needing layers (see below, my "tester sample of eight" alongside my original and its hand painted shied):
The white undercoat (from my healthy stock of Airfix Acrylic 34, from my many an Airfix starter kit [as yet unmade but their paints and brushes plundered], as I still have been unable to find a supply of Airfix 01 Grey Acrylic primer in the hobby stores I frequent) certainly does make the applied colours brighter, but I personally don't like the way is shows up "the bits you missed", unlike black or dark brown (see below):
Okay I am thinking I could fall into a brainless "Factory System" here, which is a good thing. My first eight of the sixty basic legion in the starter box. I am still unsure how I am going to base them. Single sabots (suitable for Warhammer Ancient Battles or Hail Caesar) or fixed to a diorama base (Impetus) or blocks of four (for DBA or DBM/DBMM - the latter is highly unlikely)?
Next: The Legion awaits a "brown" and a "black" wash on different parts of their bodies ;)