Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Will Reynolds of Beyond the Mask

This fellow is my first painted soldier who is not strictly historical.  His name is Will Reynolds, the hero of the movie Beyond the Mask.  His dress is closely copied from the picture at right.  With his purple coat and decorative brass buckles, he was a very interesting and enjoyable figure to paint.  The figure was produced by BMC as an artillery commander.  I cut off his backpack and canteen, but left the cartridge box, so that his pistol has more than one shot.
Figure by BMC, paints by Testors, painted by myself.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Beyond the Mask--Charles Kemp's India Jacket

Mir Jafar (center) and attendants
John Rhys-Davies in his Indian Jacket
Captain John Foote of the East India Company
The Christian movie Beyond the Mask has been recently released.  I have chronicled some of its progress on my blog previously (see
search/label/Beyond%20the%20Mask).  One of the characters in the movie, Sir Charles Kemp, wears this ornate jeweled jacket in one scene of the movie.  This is shown in picture one (Kemp is played by the actor John Rhys-Davies). There is a solid historical basis for his jacket, as I hope to show.

The second picture is detail of a larger painting by Francis Hayman circa 1760.  The painting itself is of Robert Clive and Mir Jafar meeting after the Battle of Plassey.  In this detail, Mir Jafar can be seen wearing very similar jeweled embellishments to Charles Kemp.

Indians wore these, but did Europeans, even those who had contact with India?  The answer is yes, thanks to a remarkable painting by Joshua Reynolds.  It depicts Captain John Foote of the East India Company in full native regalia.  His jacket, again, bears marked similarities to Charles Kemp's.

In conclusion, these jeweled jackets were definitively used in the 18th Century, long before any singers had popularized them.