AMPS is all about armor modeling and the preservation of armor and mechanized heritage.

Pen and Sword Military- Painting Wargaming Miniatures

ISBN Number:
Monday, March 9, 2020
Pen and Sword Books
Retail Price:
Reviewed By:
Michael Reeves

Pen and Sword Military- Painting Wargaming Miniatures


Book Specifics

Author: Andy Singleton

ISBN: 978-1-52-671635-4

Price: $22.95

6.5 x 9.5"

Paperback with 160 pages including 187 color illustrations



While it can be said this isn't exactly an armor book...well it is, but wrong sort of armor I is most definitely useful to those of us inclined to include figures with our builds. While the focus of the book is on 25 or 28mm Imperial Roman soldier figures, the techniques can easily be transferred to your 1/72 and 1/35 scale figures. From gathering the tools you will need, to preparing and assembling both plastic and metal figures, through painting various articles of clothing and equipment, and placing on a base- this book has you ready to start or set to improve your skills. 


The Tools of the Trade chapter gives an in depth look at the sorts of materials one would be working with, between the different figure types, as well as tools to use. After a brief rundown of the difference between plastic, metal, and resin figures, we get glimpses of descriptions of:

  • Knives, Cutters, and Files
  • Glues
  • Paint and Primer, and Spray Cans
  • Paint Brushes and Care.

Following this is a section on painting techniques. These include dry brushing, layering, washing and glazing, and varnish, and assembly.

The real meat of the book are the painting guides. The author does not split the sections by soldier type- like legionaries, auxilia, calvary and such. Instead he does so by area- armor, shields, flesh, horses, and tunics. If anything, I feel that makes the book even more useful to modelers as one can skip to the appropriate section much more easily.

The Early Imperial Roman Weapons and Armour section might not be so helpful as it goes into depth for the different weapon and armor types. Someone interest in ancient Roman history might thoroughly enjoy this, but the details in painting are where one might be able to apply the book best. For instance, while you might not need to worry about your figure having iron mail to paint clean or weathered (tarnished), this would certainly apply to pioneer tools or similar metal objects in a diorama. Each of the different scenarios feature step by step instructions, as well as the brush and paint type used for each.



This would work for burnt-out vehicles


Tool handles and jack blocks would easily sub in


The Shields chapter could easily work for signs on your diorama base or vehicle. The tips offered in painting Tunics, Helmet Crests, and Cloaks again would easily be applied to uniforms and leather straps and belts on any figure in any setting. The Flesh Tones chapter includes techniques for tanned, pale, and dark skin. The chapter on Painting Horses would apply for WWI calvary, or horse-drawn kitchens, wagons, and artillery from both World Wars. They include painting brown, grey, and black horses. There is a further section on the leather and straps associated with horse tack.

The final chapter is on Basin, and while they indicate small square mountings, it once again can be easily adapted to a larger base. Included in the section are preparations for green bases, snowy bases, and arid bases. A small appendix completes the book with a list of manufacturers and models used.





 If there is any part of my modeling I really need much more work on, it is figure painting. While the focus of this book is on painting Roman miniature wargaming figures, there is no reason one would have not to be able to apply it to a figure in any setting or genre. Larger scale figures probably not so much considering the vast size difference, but even then, the colors and skill sets the book features could at the very least be a place to start. I am glad to have this one in the reference library and hope to put it to good use as I paint up some figures in some planned vignettes and dioramas.

Highly Recommended for figure modelers and those interested specifically in painting miniature wargaming pieces. 

Thanks goes out to Pen & Sword and Casemate Publishing for this review sample.

Reviewed by Michael Reeves, AMPS Albany


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