Painting Britons, part 1

Woad Patterns on Naked Britons

I like these Old Glory Gaesatae (naked warriors) because they anatomically correct… and they are easy to paint. They pose a different challenge than normal Celts because as you can see they have no plaid pants to paint. While you could simply paint them in flesh tones, I think, particularly for Britons, woad tattoos are appropriate, and they really dress up your figs.

Most of the patterns I’ve found on line show simple swirls, the most extreme examples being in the Osprey Celtic Warrior book where the spirals are so tight they would be impossible to paint with a normal brush. Therefore, I opened a book I have on Viking animal designs and tried to layer some of these in for variety. Viking designs are good because, 1) they are much more simplified than what we take as “celtic zoomorphic” styles which are only really in the Book of Kells, not likely painted on a primitive warrior; and, 2) Viking designs are heavily influenced by Irish and Caledonian celts, so they are not at all unlikely to find on Britons.

I put the bigger animal designs on the backs of the warriors, while on one I did a Viking serpent wrapped around the warrior’s leg, across his back, and ending on his chest. Long story short, they took a bit of time, and I’m glad I only had eight figs to paint in the first place!

More Woad designs

On a fig-conversion note, you might have noticed that I used the extra shield w/ spear pieces from Wargames Factory, rather than the plain shields supplied by Old Glory. I’ve only built half the figures in the Celtic Warband box, but I’ve already used so many of the extra shields for these figs (see my Celtic Cavalry too), as well as the extra heads that they supply to hang from the cavalry’s saddles, that I cannot recommend this line enough. Wargames Factory is very generous with their extra ‘bits’ and I hope they keep this up for their upcoming Viking line.

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