Thursday, October 31, 2013

West Wind's Cowboy Wars Women: Part 2

Following up on the previous post, here are some more women from West Wind's Cowboy Wars range plus some thoughts on basing figures.

Thinking About Basing
Think about. If everyone were to stand out from the crowd, would there even be a crowd anymore or would those people standing out from the crowd form a new crowd from which they would have to stand out? Think about how this applies to basing figures for armies and skirmishing.

You might notice that some of my Western bases have desert rocks on them or tall grass, while others are bare except for the railroad ballast I use as "rocky desert dirt." This is a hangover from painting model railroad freight cars many years ago. Young or new model railroaders tend to want to model the unique and interesting looking freight cars because they are exciting to paint, allowing the young or new modeler to flex his painting skills while amazing his friends. If you watch a real train, however, most of the cars are quite boring looking and common place. Because of this, those unique cars really stand out from the crowd when we see them, drawing our attention as they should. If a fellow's entire train layout were nothing but those unique cars, it would look rather silly, with all those exciting and unique cars blending together into one big garish, jarring, and unrealistic crowded mess.

A few years ago when I began basing my first figures, I found myself thinking about my old model railroad freight cars. In real life, I figured, most people will not be standing next to a big rock or big flowering bush! They will be standing in boring grass they can easily walk though or in open dirt they won't be tripping over with every step. In a real Western shootout, for example, they probably would be standing in the middle of a dirt street if the shootout were set in a town.

So this is why I like the majority of my bases to be"boring," where not much is going on aside from some grass or ground cover, with some more visually interesting bases tossed into the mix for variety and excitement. I think this mix of bases makes our collection of figures a bit more interesting to look at and draws the viewer's eyes to the figures that we really want to have stand out from the crowd.

You'll really see this on my Splintered Light figures from a few posts ago. Brightly colored flowers on a base really attract the eyes, so I didn't want to over do the flowers. You might also notice that of the few bases having flowers, only one maybe two have white flowers because white is an extremely powerful color compared to the red, yellow, and orange flowers in the Woodland Scenics pack of flowers. And if you want to use purple flowers, remember that purple is the rarest color in nature, appearing only on the smallest of flowers in small quantities. So our little warriors should not be standing in fields of purple--unless the scenario calls for it, I guess.

Something to think about the next time you base those figures. Now, on to the ladies of the West!

ZCW-26 The Local Ladies #2
The Cowboys Wars rules-fluff for these two figures claims that they are different women, one being Mexican, but they look like nearly identical sculpts to me. While painting them, I began imagining a back story for them. I've mentioned this a long time ago, but I'll repeat it a bit here. In my mind, these gals are the twin Slaughter Sisters, Mary and Margaret.The prior year, a band of ruthless cattle rustlers gunned down their father, a kind and generous man who owned a large ranch outside town. Vowing vengeance and having been raised as expert shots, the sisters' sole purpose in life is to hunt down the villainous scum that killed their beloved daddy.