I’ve been struggling to think of decent colour schemes while painting my Cairo civilians. As I typically don’t paint a lot of yellows, greens, blues and reds I’m afraid of picking schemes that simply won’t look good once finished.
A tiny part of my brain has been nagging me that I needed some decent reference material for Middle Eastern civilians, but it wasn’t until I was reading my young son a Tintin book the other night that I realised I’d always had just that in my bookshelves!
Four of Tintin’s adventures occur in the Middle East: “The Cigars of the Pharaoh”, “The Crab with the Golden Claws”, “Land of Black Gold” and “The Red Sea Sharks”. I’m pretty sure I have all four in my home somewhere, but I was reading “Land of Black Gold” at the time. So once my son was asleep I threw it in the scanner and lifted a few panels for colour schemes.
Hergé’s studio was known to send their artists on location to gather reference material for the Tintin books, so I’m reasonably confident they represent suitable clothing choices for mid-20th century Arabic peoples.
It’s interesting to see in the “Land of Black Gold” that the Arabs living in the desert are depicted wearing earthy tones and generally lightly coloured head gear (see the first two images) both of which are eminently practical for hot climates. However the town folk are shown wearing a wider range of colours, particularly in terms of their head-dress and cloaks.
As a bonus we have a panel showing a number of Middle Eastern police escorting the eternally inept Thompson Twins through a street riot they initiated! I don’t really have any suitable figures to represent police like these gentlemen, but wonder if there’s somebody selling WWII 28mm North African figures that would suffice in a pinch?
At any rate I now have plenty of colour schemes to apply to my remaining Cairo civilians!