Note: This FAQ was for the painters during the project.  With the diorama now completed and open to the public, this FAQ has been kept for the interest of those who wish to see how the project took place from the very start.

What are the figures for?

These 5,000 figures are specifically designed to populate a large diorama that will be one of the exhibits in the forthcoming The Great War Exhibition.  The diorama will depict a scene of trench-fighting on a hilltop.  So many of the figures are posed as climbing the slopes, or clambering out of the trenches.

When will the diorama open?

The diorama will open on 4 May 2015 (not Anzac Day as previously advised), though The Great War Exhibition itself opens a fortnight earlier on 18 April. 

Who is running this project?

Sir Peter Jackson leads the creative team currently developing The Great War Exhibition, of which this diorama will be a part, as an official New Zealand WW100 project.  Here's a message from Peter Jackson to our painting team.

Rhys Jones, keen wargamer and former Chief of the New Zealand Defence Forces, is leading this painting project.

Alan and Michael Perry from Perry Miniatures in the UK are designing and sculpting the figures.   

Why use volunteers instead of getting the figures painted professionally?

The Great War Exhibition, which includes this diorama, is just one part of the New Zealand WW100 commemorations. Many of the hundreds of WW100 commemoration projects around the country involve volunteers providing time, skills and materials because they want to honour those who went before us. This project offers the opportunity for Kiwi wargamers to join the thousands of other New Zealand volunteers in all sorts of projects, exhibitions and events for WW100.

Who is eligible to paint the figures?

The project is open to experienced figure painters in New Zealand.  We are mainly working through wargaming clubs, but you don't necessarily have to be a club member to take part.

How do I register my interest to be a painter?

[Note: 11 Feb 2015 - sorry, registrations to be selected as painters have now closed]

Just fill in and submit the form in the right-hand sidebar.  We will then pass your details on to your nearest local coordinator/club, who will contact you by email.  From there, it is up to each local coordinator/club as to the selection process they decide to use.

Who are the local coordinators?

These are wargamers from clubs around the country who have volunteered their services to receive and distribute the figures, identify good volunteer painters, monitor and encourage progress, post some progress information and photos on this site, and then collect and send the figures back to Wellington.  They will each have around 10 painters to look after.  

Is this open to overseas painters?

Whilst we appreciate the interest that we've had from around the world, the aim of this project is that New Zealanders can take part in producing a commemorative  legacy for New Zealanders. Therefore it is only open to New Zealand-based painters.  In any case, the logistics of including overseas painters would have been difficult within the tight timeframe.

Is there an age limit?

The prime stipulation is that painters must be experienced enough to produce work to the standard shown in the painting guides, including both assembly and painting. This will generally mean painters who are very used to working with metal wargames or display figures.  The selection of painters is up to the local coordinators in each area, and so they will determine if younger volunteers are capable of this standard.

Do I have to pay for the transport of the figures?

No, we will arrange transport using Toll Logistics, from Wellington to the local coordinators, and back again afterwards.  This will be all paid for by the project.  However, if there are any costs for transporting the figures between yourself and your local coordinator, those are over to you.

What is the deadline?

We need all the figures painted and returned to Wellington by the end of March.  The counter in the right-hand sidebar shows how many days, hours and even minutes are left to go!

Where do I get the paints?

Paints are up to the clubs and individuals involved.  However, keep an eye on the resources page in case of local discounts (although these won't be possible in all areas). Also, watch the regional forums for any club joint painting days.   Most of the colours aren't that unusual, and will often be found in many wargamers' paint collections anyway. Whilst the painting guides specify certain colours and makes, there are also links to comparison charts to identify other manufacturers.

Can we ask our local media to do a story?

We encourage local coordinators to let this venture be known through your local media, as a way of advertising your clubs.  Club painting sessions, or stories of painters whose ancestors fought in the Great War will be great stories.  But a note of caution, please.  We want the exhibition to be a surprise for the public, so please keep the products relatively under wraps.  We don't mind some individual figures being shown, but please emphasise the club's painting activity and keep the final objective vague (ie part of a diorama, but not the specifics around what the diorama is about).

What about putting photos on my personal blog?

The same applies as above.  Individual figures are fine, but stay a bit cagey about the exact detail of what the diorama will depict. 

What about quality control?

We will work with the local coordinators to have their own quality control process in each area. We will also have a team of touch-up painters on stand-by in Wellington at the end of the project, in case any minor adjustments might be required.  

Can I keep any of the figures?

No, the current shipment is required entirely for the project.  However, once the Great War Exhibition is open, we may make further models. 

What happens to the figures after The Great War Exhibition finishes?

At the end of the exhibition this diorama will remain on public display in a museum, so will be a lasting legacy from us all.

Will we get our names mentioned in The Great War Exhibition?

Local coordinators will keep a list of the names of all their painters, as we want to record this work being done and give credit to all who helped. We hope to have an explanation board beside the exhibit thanking the clubs that took part. 

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