Māori and Prussians and police haka, oh my!

My wife is wonderful!  She came home from a day-trip to Rarotonga today (she’s a flight attendant on Air New Zealand) and presented me with a new duty-free camera.  Nothing too flash – just a little pocket point-and-shoot Panasonic Lumix – but very welcome.    

Recently the two existing cameras in our house have both broken (both coincidently with the dreaded false “battery empty” error).  So I haven’t been able to photograph the latest bits of painting I’ve been doing.

But with a new camera in my hand, tonight I couldn’t resist taking the first couple of test shots.  And, I must say, the results aren’t too bad, considering I just pointed and shot, making no camera adjustments whatsoever.

The first picture is of my partly based (I still have to do the static grass) 28mm Prussian musketeers by Minden Miniatures.  These will finish off the big 60-plus figure battalion I’ve been painting for what seems like (and probably actually is!) about a year now.  Purists will notice they are not totally correct colours for Prussians, but that is because they are based on the movie Barry Lyndon, not on real life.

I’m pleased with the crisp detail and the vibrant colours of this photo.  As normal on this blog, please click on the picture to see a bigger version.

By the way, the figures hidden behind the Prussians are my Foundry pirates and Empress Miniatures British and colonials for the New Zealand Wars. 

The next shot is also New Zealand Wars –  my 28mm Māori toa (warriors) by Empress Miniatures.  Again, pleasing how the camera has picked up the detail.  And I feel the close-up hasn’t exposed my rather impressionistic painting style quite as much as my old camera used to.

By the way, the above group is slightly more meaningful to me today, as this afternoon I joined the Royal New Zealand Police College’s kapa haka group, which is practising to perform traditional and modern Māori music and actions in a inter-government department ‘competition’ in a couple of weeks (well, it’s not actually supposed to be a competitive show, but you know how these things go!).  As I don’t sing or do actions well, I’m just there to boost numbers in the back of the group! 

I must say the official Police haka sounds and looks terrific – almost as good as the All Blacks’ one in the Rugby World Cup!  Here’s a YouTube video of the Police haka being performed on another occasion (not by me!):

Finally, a slightly more distant shot that includes the two above groups of figures, plus whatever else happened to be sitting on top of my workdesk tonight:  more undercoated Empress figures of British and colonials to face my Māori toa, the Foundry pirates, and the painted Empress Brits and militia.  Also a neat (and appropriate) card my lovely daughter bought for me on her recent school-trip to France.

I’ll take some more detailed shots of these latest projects over the next week or so, as I explore more of what this little camera can do.

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5 Comments

Filed under Colonial New Zealand Wars, Eighteenth century, Empress Miniatures, Minden Miniatures

5 responses to “Māori and Prussians and police haka, oh my!

  1. You know, in some “alternate” 18th C. those fierce Maoris could well face Britishs or Frenchs in tricorne…

  2. What a fantastic assortment on display and some top quality painting; excellent work Sir.

  3. Jean-Louis: oddly enough, one of the most renowned colonial soldiers fighting in the New Zealand Wars was a Prussian – Gustavus von Tempsky. Not tricorned, though, of course.

  4. All look good Roly.
    We should get those Foundry pirates of yours off the display case, and on to the games table more often! (I primed up the last ship equipments bits for my Brig last night, and based coated my new Navy crew figs and “pelogostos” cannibals).
    I am glad you qualified your statement about your haka. You are too fine a fellow in my mind to be in that position (squat pose, starry eyed, tongue out, arms waving) – It’s just not cricket ol’ boy! 😉

  5. Don’t speak too soon, Scott … me taking part in a haka may yet happen one day!! Ok, well maybe not! But having been bulldozed by some mates into joining the Police College kapa haka group, I’m actually finding it surprisingly enjoyable. And I might find I’m better at hakaing than cricket (and I’m darned bad at the latter).

    I look forward to seeing your new Navy and savage guys, and the finished ship.

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