Work in Progress

Swiss Guard, Pope and Cardinals

Posted by Santi Pérez on 16 Jul 2019, 20:00

Hello and happy summer to everybody. :-)

It has been almost three years since I made my diorama about the Swiss Guard, entitled La Guardia Svizzera nella Piazza di San Pietro (The Swiss Guard in Saint Peter’s Square).

http://bennosfiguresforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=19960&hilit=La+Guardia+Svizzera+nella+Piazza+di+San+Pietro

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I made it as a tribute to both the smallest army in the world and the excellent figures of MM Miniatures that portray the Pope’s Guard.

My interest in the Swiss Guard comes from many years ago, so I fell in love with the figures of talented sculptor Martin Macalka as soon as I saw them on the Plastic Soldier Review website and later, when I could have them in my hands.

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Some months ago I decided that I should make another diorama on this topic, but this time I wanted the co-star to be the Roman Curia (including the Pope himself) instead of an anonymous audience.

I was inspired by images like these, taken from the Conclave that concluded on 13rd March 2013 with the election of Argentinian Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio as Francis, the current Pope of the Catholic Church.

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I know it’s a long-term project and I don’t think I can finish it this summer, since I have little time available to dedicate myself to it.

In my next post I will talk about the planning of the diorama and the selection of figures (a complicated task in the case of the religious ones, not so much in the case of the Swiss Guards).

Thanks for watching. :thumbup:

Santi.
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Santi Pérez  Spain
 
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Posted by sberry on 16 Jul 2019, 20:39

I remember this first contribution very well, and I am very curious to see the expanded version that you are planning. It will be a very colorful scene, that's for sure! And I am curious to learn from where you will get the lots of cardinals etc. that you are needing.
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sberry  Germany
 
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Posted by Bluefalchion on 17 Jul 2019, 00:02

Ambitious but I am more than sure you will do it justice, Santi Pérez.
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Bluefalchion  United States of America
 
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Posted by Graeme on 17 Jul 2019, 03:23

I'm looking forward to seeing how you go about this as well, espescially the figure selection.

I know the painting will be splendid. :-D
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Graeme  Australia
 
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Posted by AgaPablo on 17 Jul 2019, 10:08

Good luck with your new project! :thumbup:
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AgaPablo  Spain
 
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Posted by Konrad on 17 Jul 2019, 15:28

Nice and colorful work,santi.
Really great.
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Posted by Kostis Ornerakis on 17 Jul 2019, 15:49

Go for it!! :thumbup: :-D
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Kostis Ornerakis  Greece
 
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Posted by Ben90 on 17 Jul 2019, 17:57

Splendid work on these minis!
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Ben90  Germany
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Posted by lobo on 18 Jul 2019, 05:51

I didn't know about this diorima...splendid composition and paintwork!
I'm sure the nect will be marvelous!
Ánimo Santi!
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Posted by Mr. Andrea on 18 Jul 2019, 10:03

Always a pleasure looking at your works. This one is particularly colorful and cheerful. Bravo!
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Posted by Santi Pérez on 18 Jul 2019, 20:02

Thank you very much for your support and confidence in me, friends. ;-)

As always I'll try to do my best and with my unmistakable cartoonish style figures, hahaha.

sberry wrote:...I am very curious to see the expanded version that you are planning. It will be a very colorful scene, that's for sure! And I am curious to learn from where you will get the lots of cardinals etc. that you are needing.


Sorry, sberry, but don't expect a big diorama. Making something like that would take me too much time. I prefer to be realistic and modest, and make something more humble. :neutral:

First of all, I decided that the number of figures in the diorama should not exceed about fifteen, and then I looked for the ideal base. Bearing in mind that the composition would include two elements (the row of Swiss Guards presenting arms and the procession of religious figures), the base should have an elongated shape.

Once again I searched the Andrea Miniatures bases catalog (https://www.andreaeurope.com/es/4/complementos/408/peanas-de-madera-andrea.html) and chose the following one, size 100x80x50mm.

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Then I had to choose the scenario in which the figures would be placed. It had to be a room inside the Vatican, all well known for their sumptuous decoration. The room had to include at least a splendid marble floor, perhaps also a wall decorated with beautiful frescoes or paintings. However, although a wall would add colour to the scene, it would avoid a view of the figures from all possible angles, so I decided to leave only the floor.

After hours and days searching the Internet for designs of printable marble floors, I could only find a few and I chose the next one, not as rich as I would have liked (If anyone knows of any better printable design for free, I would appreciate any possible help). :-)

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The next step was to choose the necessary figures. I started with the easiest thing, the Swiss Guards. I wanted to include an Officer, a Sergeant, a Corporal and two or three halberdiers, representing the beginning of the formation, all of them presenting arms to the religious procession.

Of course, the figures used would be those of the MM Miniatures set, in this case not the armoured figure on the move but the standing unarmoured one (the figure on the right in the picture). The original figure would have to be appropriately converted into the desired characters (conversions in a future post). ;-)

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The choice of the religious characters was much more complicated. I will dedicate the nex post to it. Sorry for making you wait. :)

Santi.
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Santi Pérez  Spain
 
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Posted by Santi Pérez on 20 Jul 2019, 19:43

The selection of figures suitable for conversion into the Pope and other high ranking Catholic religious figures were arduous and complicated. :sweatdrop:

I went through the Plastic Soldier Review website looking at the different historical periods in which there could be religious figures such as priests, friars, monks and something like that. I could find some, like the ones that appear below.

Hät El Cid Spanish Command.

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Hät Spanish Guerrillas.

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Airfix Robin Hood.

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Linear-B Age of Tudors.

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Strelets Russian Staff and Hospital.

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Strelets Court and Army of Peter I.

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Red Box Russian War Monks.

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The main problem with all of them was that they represented one or two unique figures in a set of many (except the Russian War Monks obviously), so the price to get all that I needed was going to be quite high. :(

Then I tried another solution. I looked for figures of those used in railway modeling and found some that seemed ideal, from the Spanish manufacturer ANESTE. Althought they are metal casting and prepainted, they include the Pope himself and other five different figures, so I got them. :-)

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I knew they were H0 scale, but I thought they maybe would fit well with the Swiss Guards in 1/72. However, when they arrived home and were compared, the size difference was huge. :neutral:

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Failed this attempt, I went back to PSR. In this second search I found a set that I didn't see the first time. It was Pegasus set 7051 California Mission Indians.

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Despite including 19 figures of American Indians and other accessories that I didn't need, it came with 9 different figures of Spanish Franciscan monks. With the correct conversions, I trusted to transform the nine monks into the Pope, the Cardinals and the rest of figures I needed for my diorama. :P

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Could I get it? In the next post, I will begin to explain all the conversions made, since no figure of those that make up the diorama will retain its original appearance. :shock:

Santi.
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Santi Pérez  Spain
 
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Posted by Santi Pérez on 26 Jul 2019, 20:11

Tomorrow I leave with my family to the Canary Islands (the Paradise in Earth) for some days. It's a trip for relax and rest, so I will not be connected to the internet during it and won't be able to enter the forum. :winky:

So I put this last post with pictures of the outline I have planned for the diorama.

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The line of Swiss Guards will include the following ones from left to right.

An officer:

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A Sergeant:

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A Corporal and two Halberdiers:

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The religious procession will begin with a Cross bearear:

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Behind him six Cardinals in pairs with this clothing:

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And finally the Pope with an assistant Monsignor:

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I will continue when back home in ten days or so. :thumbup:

Enjoy these days. :wave:

Santi.
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Santi Pérez  Spain
 
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Posted by Bluefalchion on 26 Jul 2019, 22:16

There is no "love" button on our forum, so I gave your last post a "like."
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Posted by Wiking on 27 Jul 2019, 04:41

After a long discussion with me I finally bought this Pegasus set last year too. Because of the monks.
Nice done by Pegasus and all in a little bit different pose. Very good.

Go on with your work. And the transformation into higher ranks of the actual poor monks.
:yeah:
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Posted by Wiking on 04 Aug 2019, 13:13

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Posted by Santi Pérez on 05 Aug 2019, 18:36

Well, I'm already back home after my vacation days out. :(

Bluefalchion wrote:There is no "love" button on our forum, so I gave your last post a "like."


Thanks Bluefalchion. I hope you "love" the diorama more once I can finish it. ;-)

Wiking wrote:After a long discussion with me I finally bought this Pegasus set last year too. Because of the monks. Nice done by Pegasus and all in a little bit different pose. Very good. Go on with your work. And the transformation into higher ranks of the actual poor monks. :yeah:


I agree with you, Wiking. The quality of the figures is very good. And the variety of poses also helps me in the conversion job. :-)



Very interesting 3D printed figures, Wiking. The main problem with them is their price. I got the Pegasus set for almost less than one of the printed figures. :shock:

Beside, I enjoy converting the figures, more even than painting them.

Here are the converted Swiss Guards ready for the paint job.

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In the next post I will explain and illustrate their conversion process. :-D

Santi.
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Santi Pérez  Spain
 
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Posted by Bill Slavin on 06 Aug 2019, 02:59

Great stuff, Santi. If you hadn’t found your mission monks I was going to offer to mail you a half dozen unused priests from my Spanish Guerrillas set!
Glad you couldn’t use those dull railway figures...
Good luck with the project.

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Posted by Susofrick on 06 Aug 2019, 07:26

Looking forward to see this finished! And the W.I.P. too. Also bought the Pegasus set for the monks, but maybe I'll do something with the natives.
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Posted by huib on 06 Aug 2019, 21:20

A very nice and unusual theme, Santi!
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