Wednesday, October 10, 2012

A House in the Country

With some trees done I knew I needed something else to go with them. Trees and to a slightly lesser extent rocks are pretty much scale neutral. Next to a 15mm figure a tree might be a mighty oak but the same tree seen with a 28mm figure looks like a scrubby little maple. So I needed two things to make everything work out.

First is something for my trees to stand on. I like magnetizing the trees since it allows them to both be positioned individually and to minimize the base so it looks like its coming straight out of the ground. The downside is you need to make a board specifically for them with metal built into it. So I made a small board mainly for taking photographs. Its sized to fit in my light box and the plan is to try to scale it to 15mm.

The board starts as just some insulation foam with bits of sheet metal glued to it.

Next a layer of spackling to smooth it all out.

Second I need a house. Buildings are the best thing for showing scale. There is a reason Godzilla is always stomping down main street in downtown Tokyo. I wanted my first building to be nice and simple so I can experiment with building techniques and not get bogged down in the details. I decided on a simple clapboard house with an addition and a little porch. I saw a picture of something similar in an American Civil War era photograph and I'm using that as my guide.

Basic structure put together and casting some details.
The basic structure is built out of foam core. I used some of my cast architectural details for the door and windows. I pondered how to do the clapboard siding and decided to use 1/32 balsa wood sheet. I cut it to size and then using a straight edge and a spoon buffer sculpting tool pressed in the board shapes. I glued these on the outside.
Started work on the front porch and laid down some plasti-card to form a base for the roof. The tool up front is the spoon burnisher used to press in the boards.

I'm thinking the roof is going be done similarly. I'm guessing it would either be shakes or slates in reality so I'm going to try to press the pattern into the balsa wood and see how that turns out.

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