Steve Wood provides an easy ‘wargames standard’ painting guide aimed at getting your forces battle ready for Never Mind the Billhooks in super-quick time.
I am by no means a professional painter. All of my models are painted with wargaming in mind and are used to fight battles with my wargaming buddies. I tend to use whatever technique will get my figures onto the table in as fast a time as I can manage!
The second caveat is regarding colour schemes and uniforms. The information for this period is sketchy at best. We don’t really know how the armies lined up or how they fought in any great detail. The same is true of the ‘uniforms’ that the troops wore. We do have details of the likely coats of arms, the flags and banners and therefore, to some extent, the household livery colours and badges that were in use; but there are few contemporary records. I’ve put a couple of references that I used at the end of the article. The whole point of our gaming group in moving to the Wars of the Roses period for wargaming was to give us some respite from the ‘button counting’ that goes with some other eras, notably Napoleonics. (Which incidentally, is my favourite period!)
With this in mind, my retinue is entirely fictional. The leader is Sir Harry Hotspur, ably assisted by Sir Eric Diehard and Sergeant Daniel Rose (who usually takes the left wing). The majority of my army has a white and blue livery, although in this article, I am using a couple of other colour combinations. Within reason, you can choose whatever colours you see fit but again, I’ve included some actual colour combinations used by the historical houses of the time at the end of the article.
I’ve given examples of painting billmen and bowmen who were the mainstay of the armies of the time. The techniques can easily be used for other troops.
All figures are Perry Plastics.
All paints used were Vallejo, unless otherwise stated.