Here’s a resin Orthodox church I finished on the weekend. I’ve given you both the ‘natural lighting’ version and the ‘computer adjusted’ lighting version of the two photos.

It’s a single piece, made of resin and very well cast…I didn’t have to sand back or file off anything at all.

Initially I delayed painting it, as it seemed a bit daunting. I had some colour photographs of wooden Orthodox churches (and a wooden Viking-age church) and the variations in wood colour and weathering of the wood made me feel like no matter what I did, it wouldn’t look true to life. But once the Scorched Earth went on the walls and the Bestial Brown went on the roof tiles/roof shingles, my confidence was restored and the piece was done in a couple of short bursts over a couple of nights. It looks all right!

I could have done it as white walls, and photos often show the majority of them as stone/brick/whitewashed plaster walls.

But this is terrain that could have been for two reasons:

  1. This is only for 15mm gaming, not 20mm (1/72 or 1/76), so it’s the wrong scale. Put one of my tanks or bases of infantry next to it and you’d see the difference.
  2. This is to be used for wargaming a period 750-1000 years earlier than World War Two! Back then, there was only one stone church in all of Russia, The Church of the Tithes in Kiev. The rest of them were all in wood. So churches like this are far more representative of the time.

I suppose a future project would be to make something similar in 20mm scale using sheet styrene and foamcore board? Then I could have a small stone Orthodox church in a village..whether or not it is being used as a church or a storehouse would depend on what month I’m gaming, as Stalin had to permit churches to re-open once the Great Patriotic War was identified as the major war it was going to be and faith in religion (and not blind faith in Stalin) was permitted in order to bolster the people’s morale and will to fight.


A report on Friday’s game is still being written. It’s nearly done and it will be the next post on this blog.

I was sent this via e-mail by a mate.

The text that accompanied it went as follows:
“This Video shows the Winner of 2009’s ” Ukraine ’s Got Talent”,
Kseniya Simonova, 24, drawing a series of pictures on an illuminated
sand table showing how ordinary people were affected by the German
Invasion during World War II. Her talent, which admittedly is a
strange one, is mesmeric to watch.
The images, projected onto a large screen, moved many in the audience
to tears and she won the top prize of about $75,000.
She begins by creating a scene showing a couple sitting holding hands
on a bench under a starry sky, but then warplanes appear and the happy
scene is obliterated.
It is replaced by a woman’s face crying, but then a baby arrives and
the woman smiles again. Once again war returns and Miss Simonova
throws the sand into chaos from which a young woman’s face appears.
She quickly becomes an old widow, her face wrinkled and sad, before
the image turns into a monument to an Unknown Soldier.
This outdoor scene becomes framed by a window as if the viewer is
looking out on the monument from within a house.
In the final scene, a mother and child appear inside and a man
standing outside, with his hands pressed against the glass, saying
The Great Patriotic War, as it is called in Ukraine , resulted in one
in four of the population being killed with eight to 11 million deaths
out of a population of 42 million.
An art critic said:
“I find it difficult enough to create art using paper and pencils or
paintbrushes, but using sand and fingers is beyond me. The art,
especially when the war is used as the subject matter, even brings
some audience members to tears. And there’s surely no bigger

I personally cannot testify to the veracity of all that text (especially the comment by the art critic) but it is an impressive and extremely important work by Kseniya Simonova.

Since it deals with the Eastern Front (OstFront), naturally I’ve included it here.

The Ukraine was a particularly precious prize to both the Germans and the Russians. Whatever conflict happened there was always going to be bloodier than usual. A grim reminder of why we should always exhaust all avenues of   “jaw-jaw” and leave “war-war” to be the absolute last resort (thanks to Winston Churchill for “jaw-jaw”-“war-war”).

Close, but not quite

October 30, 2007

I was not happy enough with my attempt at a wash on the 251/1C’s, so I’ve painted over and will try again. They won’t be fielded on the table now, as they are too heavily painted on and too much detail is lost. So I’ll have to buy some more (yay!).

Over at Google Maps, I found the city of Pinsk, to try and look at the surrounding Pripyat Marshes which caused the Germans so much trouble. Realising that more of this famous marsh system has been drained and converted to farmlands since the Great Patriotic War, what I see isn’t so helpful. Using photographs is much better.