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The Battle of Quatre Bras 16th June 1815

Posted by Bessiere on 16 Aug 2020, 17:29

I don't know how you find the time Mr. D with your Antietam project going on. Your posts are always a real treat for me; something I truly look forward to seeing. I have a perhaps mundane question to ask of you and that is how your figures are based and how you approach arranging them in scene. There is a great deal of artistry that goes in to creating these scenes and you sir have mastered every element. Thanks again for sharing your time and talents with us, to me it's like Christmas morning. Regards, Bessiere
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Posted by MABO on 16 Aug 2020, 18:21

Bessiere wrote:I don't know how you find the time Mr. D with your Antietam project going on. Your posts are always a real treat for me; something I truly look forward to seeing. I have a perhaps mundane question to ask of you and that is how your figures are based and how you approach arranging them in scene. There is a great deal of artistry that goes in to creating these scenes and you sir have mastered every element. Thanks again for sharing your time and talents with us, to me it's like Christmas morning. Regards, Bessiere


I second that! :notworthy: :notworthy: :notworthy:
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MABO  Europe
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Posted by stephane42 on 16 Aug 2020, 18:25

superb diorama with an impressive quantity of figurines The photos are very well taken, we have the impression of being there !!!!
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stephane42  France
 
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Posted by Egbert on 17 Aug 2020, 06:53

Oh Chris...
it's sooo wonderful. :drool:
I'm overwhelmed from your fantastic work! :notworthy: :notworthy:
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Egbert  Germany
 
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Posted by sberry on 17 Aug 2020, 08:01

(To cite myself, because I have already made a comment elsewhere:)
Very impressive and overwhelming indeed!
Watching this dramatic series of photos is really like watching a movie.
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sberry  Germany
 
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Posted by C M Dodson on 17 Aug 2020, 08:13

Thank you to everyone for their kind comments.

As always they are very much appreciated and add impetus to do better.

To answer Bessieres question the troops are all individually based.

By using a sand table the bases can be covered by sinking the troops into the sand or by brushing it over the bases.

For individual scenes ( such as rearing horses) I sometimes use plasticine as a base which is then buried.

Sand is a great medium as you can excavate part of the battlefield to get the camera at ground or even underneath the scene to get the ‘feel’ of the action.

I watched a clip of the buffalo stampede from How the West was won which gave me that idea some time ago.

Films can provide lots of ideas.

Thank you, once again.

Best wishes,

Chris
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Posted by Bessiere on 17 Aug 2020, 13:49

Very kind of you to share your trade secrets with us Mr D, thank you! I was watching a video about the largest train set up in Britain last night and he described a method of using static grass with pva glue then coming back and adding more along with other touches to make some superb looking winter grass. For some reason you came to mind while watching it and if you were interested I would share the link with you. The part about grass is 8 minutes in : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jK-DChcWPqA
Bessiere  United States of America
 
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Posted by Bill Slavin on 17 Aug 2020, 14:07

Timeline August 17 9 AM

I sit down with my cup of coffee and check out Benno's, and in the blink of an eye I'm transported to the Quatre Bras battlefield.

Stupendous, as always, Mr. Dodson! It's hard to say what my favourite picture is but I found the presenting of the captured English colours one of those moments that you capture beautifully. And of course the picture of the the last French attack is amazing. What I love about your dioramas is how you manage to capture the simultaneous order and chaos of a Napoleonic battlefield as artificial, man-made formations devolve into a street brawl.
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Posted by Captain Sibourne on 17 Aug 2020, 14:48

This is a fantastic climax to this great series. I do hope that you will bring all your photographs from the last few years together in some format or other. The key words that spring to mind are:

- Narrative. You use pictures to tell a story in a very unique way
- Perspective. In amongst the large-scale, you always find the small vignette
- Friction. Clausewitz's fog of war is never far away in these pictures.

many thanks for cheering up our lives. Roll on Antietam!
Captain Sibourne  United Kingdom
 
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Posted by Bessiere on 17 Aug 2020, 15:16

Those poor French on the receiving end of cannister really captures the dark reality of Napoleonic warfare for me. It was one of the few ideas I had tinkered with for making my own diorama and you have frozen that horrible moment in time perfectly. Your work to me is a wonderful tribute to the courage of those men from long ago.
Bessiere  United States of America
 
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Posted by C M Dodson on 17 Aug 2020, 16:22

Thank you once again everyone, you are all very kind.

I have a final episode to close the action down rather than a ‘that’s it folks’ ending with a few ideas to pull it all together.

In the meantime the link from Mr B is excellent.

We can learn much from the railway modelling fraternity and the use of natural products is always top of the list as they absorb light.

The water looks brilliant but I like to use the real stuff.

I have an idea to use Alka Seltzer tablets to bubble up the water representing an Austrian barge hitting a French pontoon ... but that’s another story.

Chris
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Posted by C M Dodson on 17 Oct 2020, 17:46

The Battle of Quatre Bras 16th June 1815


Timeline 6.30 PM to dusk

The Guards of 1st British Infantry Division [ Major-general George Cooke commanding] having entered the Bois de Bossu are pushing the French to the edge of the wood. Fighting is fierce but the French have no reserves and can only delay the inevitable faced with 4000 exhausted but eager Guardsmen.

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The withdrawal of the 2nd Legere [Colonel Pierre-Francois Maigrot] to positons near Piramount has allowed the British 95th Rifles [ Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Andrew Barnard] to infiltrate the hamlet of Thyle.

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This action has reopened the Namur road and the communication route to the Prussians at Ligny.

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This advance is supported by newly arrived elements of Brunswick infantry and artillery extending the Allied left.


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The 1st Hanoverian Infantry Brigade [Major-General Count Frederich von Kielmansegge] , advances towards the Gemioncourt stream pushing back the dispirited French who elect to make a stand behind the sturdy hedge line.


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However, the French artillery, efficient as ever start to inflict serious casualties and the fighting dies down ending in a stalemate with both sides exhausted.

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Marshal Ney having dined with Prince Jerome despatches his report to the Emperor before trying to get some much needed rest.

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Meanwhile as dusk falls His Grace, the Duke of Wellington, accompanied by General Willem, the Hereditary Prince of Orange-Nassau scout the French camp near Ferme Lairalle.

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Today has been a momentous one, and tomorrow promises to be another.....
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Posted by Peter on 17 Oct 2020, 22:38

Wonderfull work again Chris! :thumbup:

Lots to see! ;-)
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Peter  Belgium

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Posted by C M Dodson on 19 Oct 2020, 18:47

Thank you Peter for your kind words.

My re- fight is now over and has been most enjoyable.

I must thank everyone for their generous comments and support that has motivated me during this period.

I have posted a battle report in the games section of the forum for those that may be interested in the mechanics and conclusions I have drawn.

Best wishes,

Chris
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Posted by MABO on 21 Oct 2020, 07:04

Fantastic final episode of this dramatic struggle. Thanks for sharing your enormous work. Today there is only a small monument on the famous crossroads with no real place to rest.

I am looking forward to the next "movie" Antietam.
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Posted by dykio on 21 Oct 2020, 07:52

Now just be honest about it Chris..... I didnt know they had fotocameras already back then but these are Original pictures. I mean the first one in the bois de bossu just cannot be 1:72 :drool: Brilliant !!!
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Posted by Susofrick on 21 Oct 2020, 08:21

Not only enjoyable for you, but also for us, the viewers! Great to follow this and looking forward to what you do next.
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Posted by Rich W on 24 Oct 2020, 10:23

Congratulations Chris. A real epic display for us all to enjoy. You must be pleased with the results.
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Posted by Graeme on 27 Oct 2020, 05:18

Well, wellington said Waterloo was a near run thing but this re-fight seems to have been balanced on a knife edge right to the very end.

Excellent photos once again, great compositions and incredible use of conversions for the casualties and unique figures. The standout scenes this time were the Cuirassiers charging the British infantry, the presenting of the captured colours and the group of officers gathering around the wounded Alten.

What a fabulous journey this has been. At this time when we are only allowed armchair travel this has been armchair time-travel of the very best kind, I,m looking forward to Antietem but I'm sorry to be leaving the Hundred Days behind. Perhaps I'll go back and look for the start of Waterloo on ETS.
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Graeme  Australia
 
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Posted by C M Dodson on 27 Oct 2020, 09:14

Thank you for your kind words and support Graham.

I was looking at the Waterloo pictures from my file and was a bit shocked as to how poor they are as a comparison.

The learning curve is evident but there is so much more to do in order to try and catch up with Wolfgang.

Hopefully, Antietam will be a step in the right direction.

Thank you again.

Best wishes,

Chris
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