Armies In Plastic conversion.
I decided that my army of Beja warriors needed to have a mounted leader to command them. Who better to have than Osman Digna?
Osman Digna is probably best known as the one who wiped out Valentine Baker's (Baker Pasha) Egyptian army at the Battle of El Ten in 1883. This caused Britain to send an army under General Graham to the area to rescue the situation and regain control of the area for Egypt. Graham defeated Osman Digna's army at the second Battle of El Ten, but with great difficulty. That was followed by the Battle of Tamai, in which the Beja army broke a large British square and nearly won a great victory.
Osman Digna seems to be quite a colorful character to me and that is one of the reasons why I chose to build a Beja army
|The capture of Osman Digna in 1899|
Neither Armies In Plastic, Britains, or John Jenkins Designs make a 54mm figure of Osman Digna. In fact, non of them make any personality figures as far as I know, which is a shame. That being the case, it was clear that I would have to make my own figure.
So let's get on to pictures of my conversion of an Armies In Plastic figure into Osman Digna.
|The figure on the left is the pose of the original figure that I used for the conversion. |
This figure had its original sword removed and replaced with a wire spear (North Star spears).
The figure on the right is the converted Osman Digna figure.
The end result was a very dynamic pose for Osman Digna, heroically waving his sword with his right hand and pulling up on the horse's reins with his left hand.
The figures were then primed with Vallejo spray primer, painted with acrylic paint, and then sealed with a couple of coats of gloss coat sealer. I think that 54mm figures look better with a gloss coat. I did a little extra painted detail work on the saddle cloth to make the figure look more important than one of the rank and file warriors.
I also did a special paint job on another Armies In Plastic cavalryman so that I could have a leader of my Ansar contingent of the Mahdi's army. I haven't given him a name yet, but I'm sure that somewhere is the name of all of The Mahdi's subordinate army leaders. The Mahdi himself did not take a part in the fighting because he was the leader, prophet and The Expected One.
So this week I finished painting ten more Beja, 5 more Egyptian artillery crew, one British artillery crew, the two mounted Mahdist leaders and one extra rank and file cavalry warrior. I have another ten Beja on the painting table and this afternoon I primed 32 Egyptian army regulars. The latter will be painted as one of the Sudanese regiments in Egyptian service.