I've returned to the Italian Wars with a vignette of Francis I of France overseeing the investment of Pavia, October 1524.
Francis is seen here with his helmet under his arm, discussing the proposed dispositions of the French siege with one of his advisors, Montmorency, Marshal of France. The two men have recently arrived in front of the city and have placed a map of Pavia on a makeshift table made from a wagon wheel placed on a tree stump. A pair of Francis' hunting dogs, alaunts (a breed now sadly extinct), are at his side. His banner-bearer stands at the rear, holding the Royal Standard. Royal attendants have brought out a stool with a refreshment of wine in pewter goblets.
Francis' figure is roughly based on a oil on wood painting from an unknown artist done within a few years of the battle. He is depicted wearing gold armour with a red surcoat emblazoned with a cross.
I kept the red surcoat but instead painted him in his tournament armour which is detailed with representations of fleur de lis on the knees, elbows and helmet. The armour can be seen today at musée de l’Armée, Les Invalides.
The figures of Francis and the knights are from the very talented Oliver James at Steel Fist Miniatures.
The two alaunts were sculpted by Steve May as a small commission to Simon over at le Jay Emprins, who kindly provided me a set (Thanks Simon!).
|Alaunts at the kill of a wild boar from The Grimami Breviary 1490|
The tree stump, wagon wheel, stool, wine bottle and goblets I printed off my 3D printer (I LOVE that thing).
Francis' brave banner is from Pete's Flags.
As a historical proscript, the French siege of Pavia went on too long and a Imperialist relief force was dispatched to attempt to lift the siege. In a bold night attack, the Spanish Imperial army smashed Francis' forces on 24th February 1525. As the ultimate disgrace, Francis himself was captured and sent to Spain as a prisoner.
Thanks for visiting the gallery everyone! Please take time to cast your votes for your favourites.