Monday, December 31, 2012

Down on the Farm with Fritz

I realized I hadn't taken any shots of the farmstead with figures. That was sort of the whole reason for making it, to give some scale for the miniatures I had finished.

One thing I ran into with the tile board was that the magnets in the trees I made aren't strong enough to grip through the thick vinyl. So I ended up making a few small metal pieces to use as bases for the trees. I did them basically the same way as the board but I picked up some different turf colors to mix in as well.

I'm kinda going around in a circle on the bases with terrain. It just seems faintly ridiculous to make a base for a tree, that was made to not need a base, so it will stand up on the board. I might need to rethink this whole basing thing. While I like the baseless concept, at 1/100 scale I'm not sure how practical it is. I've already used small, partial bases on the buildings I made to protect some of the more fragile parts. I'm thinking something similar would work with the trees as well. I might be able to get away from the thick trunks then and keep it more realistic looking, which was the original goal anyways. I'm gonna keep experimenting but I expect I'll be going with more bases in the future. 

Monday, December 17, 2012

Laying Some Groundwork

A little while ago I started work on a simple section of board to take pictures of my farmstead on. It didn't go so well. It just wasn't flat enough for the house and other terrain to sit on nicely. So I decided to take another approach. I borrowed an idea from Spacejacker over at Tiny Solitary Soldier and picked up a simple vinyl tile at a local hardware store. Its a foot square and I looked for one that had the most surface detail. I sprayed it black and dry-brushed it up through brown in the recessed areas.

Next I layed down some ground scatter across all of the areas that I wanted to get covered with grass. I used the same fine turf that I've used previously on the trees.

I forgot to take a picture of the tile after just the dry-brushing. Here it is with the turf applied.

I've always had a problem with the turf wearing away in the past so I experimented with soaking the whole board with a mix of watered down glue. I also wanted it to act like an ink wash so I mixed a little paint into it as well. I applied this with a pipette so it thoroughly soaked all of the turf.

While still wet I also put some glue directly on in spots and then hit this with some static grass clumps. I sprinkled more static grass around as well. 

Just after I put the static grass on and still soaked with glue.
Coming back the next day I saw both good and bad. The turf was attached very solidly so that worked out well. The paint in the mix though didn't act so much as an ink-wash as it just colored all the turf a similar color. It also left distinct edges anywhere it didn't get too. Not a total loss though. I dry-brushed some greens and browns on to blend things together and give some more definition.

 Room for improvement but I think it turned out fine. I'm considering getting 4 more and making a quick and easy board to play on.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Good ol' Fashion Barn Raising

Well to be more accurate its a barn assembly but close enough. I've gotten a good start on the barn. I saved it to later because going into it I knew I wanted to try out a couple of more complicated ideas with it.

Pieces for the sides cut out.

First, I wanted a removable roof since its big enough to fit a fair amount of guys in there. This meant the walls would have to be pretty strong on their own without the reinforcement of the foamcore center that all of my other buildings have. It also means a detailed interior. Luckily barns are pretty open so that won't be too bad. I decided to carve wood  planks into basswood for the cladding and use some more basswood strips as the interior framework. It won't be nearly as sturdy as the rest of the buildings but I don't treat my terrain too roughly either so it should be OK.

Internal framing. Now that's a barn that's not going to fall down!

I also want to make the main doors open-able. Mainly because I think it would make for a great picture of a monster or robot pushing them open as it stalks forward from the gloomy depths of the barn. I'm still playing with the best way to attach them. Since I'm patterning the barn more or less on local ones here in Western PA I've decided on using New England style sliding doors as opposed to the English style swinging ones. I've also had better luck with sliding pocket doors on buildings as opposed to hinged doors.

Backside showing off that fine panel work.
First tile strip done.
 I also completed my first strip of roofing tiles sculpted out of procreate. Once I get a few more done I'll get a mold made and start casting them. I'm going to need a lot of tiles to cover that big barn roof!
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