Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Allan Quatermain

I've just completed my third West Wind Empire of the Dead figure: Allan Quatermain.  Although he was easy to paint I'm not quite so enamoured of him as a figure compared with Irene Adler and Captain Nemo.  The main issue I have with him is the way his hat sits rather uncomfortably perched on top of his head.  His gun looks a bit short too for the sort of elephant gun I would imagine him carrying. 

His clothes look like they are, in part, based on Sean Connery's portrayal from The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.

For the Legatus, Allan Quatermain will always be Stewart Granger, as seen in King Solomon's Mines (1950).  Unusually for the time, actually shot in Africa (the prospect of having to live in a tent was what caused original choice for the role Errol Flynn to pass on the part) the film is unusual in that it doesn't have an accompanying musical score.

Richards Carlson, Deborah Kerr and Stewart Granger in King Solomon's Mines

The Legatus listens to a lot of soundtrack music, which is particularly good for painting too, but, really, the notion of music playing in the background of a film is quite odd if you think about it.   A hangover from the days of silent film it is strange that so much effort goes into making what appears on screen as realistic as possible and then accompanies it by the completely unrealistic practice of having music underlining the action.  In a way, it is just as unrealistic as the much derided idea that in Bollywood films everyone suddenly breaks into a song and dance routine, even in an otherwise serious drama.  But, of course, King Solomon's Mines, an otherwise excellent film, seems to have something lacking about it because of the absence of music.   I painted Quatermain to the sound of the scores from Mountains of the Moon by Michael Small and the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen by Trevor Jones (his music is better than the film itself).

Next up are The Servants of Ra figures for In Her Majesty's Name.

1 comment:

  1. Another blog? At least I hope we get Victorian girls in lingerie in this one!