This banquet set is full of life.The head table guests include the opulent Duke and the Dutchess, and the Bishop.There are many entertainers: a jester, a costumed bird and cat person, and a 5 piece band with bagpipes,fiddle, tabor, and flutes.There are 17 diners and 2 servers carrying trays.Some of these diners are shared with the medieval tavern set,but there are 4 well-dressed ladies and 4 well-dressed noblemen to compliment the scene.Finally, there are 2 dogs of different breeds in the set although I have 3 in the photos because I borrowedone from the medieval tavern set.
The figures are placed in a partially completed scale building.It will be a meeting hall with two doors and two fire places, but at thistime I have just completed the foundation and the large timber frames.Some wattled walls and a removable thatch roof will complete the building one day.This banquet set also has some sconces and torches which I will permanently add tothe building timbers later on.
Unfortunately, my banquet set was missing the legs for the last diner, so there are only 16 in the pictures here.The other legs are to be sent, but they did not show in time for my photos.
I painted these figures in my usual manner with Vallejo acrylic paints.Each figure gets the basic flesh tones and clothing blocked in.Then the highlights are drybrushed.Then the details such as belts, caps, hair, and shoes are added.Finally, I wash the figures with MinWax Polyshades polyurethane stain.Some people call this "Magic Wash".Apply liberally with a disposable brush, and remove the excess with a cotton swap or paper towel.The MinWax stain is very fine pigment and a very consistent density.It dries slowly, so you can adjust the shadowing to the intensity you like.What you see wet is very close to what you see dry.I find the MinWax product much more controllable and repeatable than acrylic inks and washes.
My favorite figures in this set are the entertainers.Here we see two of them in costume.One is in a cat costume and the other in a bird costume.I do not know if these have medieval banquet significance,or if others can provide a historical reference,but I imagine these folks walking around and telling jokes or performing magic actsto entertain the guests.The cat person sculpture has a very interesting pose as if just making a coin disappear and saying "ta da."The bird person is painted in white tunic on the cover, but I have painted himas a crow to look like Drinky Crow, one of my favorite comic strip characters.
The server by the fireplace has a roast pig in his tray.Most of my figures are covered with Testor's Dullcote matte varnish.However most of the food, which is normally glossy and dripping withsauce or fat juices, is coated with some Liquitex Gloss Varnish.It is tough to see in the small photos, but most of the food is glossy.
Perhaps coming from my Dark Ages background, I tend to paint my clothing more drab.Other than the nobles at the head table, I have very simple earth colors onmy figures.Whatever you choose, the scene very readily becomes unique and interesting.
Here is an overhead view of all the figures in the Mirliton Duke's Banquet set.You can see just how busy the table settings and how many figures there are.There is plenty going on down there.
The standing figures in this Mirliton kit have no molded bases.So I constructed resin bases to look like the floor.The figures are epoxied to the base using 6 minute epoxy which ismuch stronger than white glue or cyano-acrylate super glue.
Thanks for visiting and reading about my Mirliton Tavern figures.I hope you enjoyed reading the details of making and painting them.If you have a similar kit, I would be interested in seeingyour version and the ideas you used to make the scene.More miniatures-related articles are atDan Becker's Miniatures and Models site.