Here’s something I bought largely on a whim from a local craft store that has proven unexpectedly useful. It’s a 2oz (60ml) sprayer, cost about $2, and I find all sorts of uses for it.
Filled (as it is here) with a dilute mixture of acrylic artists ink and water, it’s a highly controllable way of applying washes or stains to scenery projects. In this case it’s got a grungy-looking mix of green and brown inks in it as part of an ongoing experiment in making grassy fields from fake fur (more on the fake fur experiments in a future post!). Due to lack of bench space, I often put projects on an old plastic tray and work on them there; I can spray with this little sprayer without having overspray all over the tray and the table I’m working on.
Something for the English Civil War/Thirty Years War table, as well as for pulp games set in the quainter parts of the UK or Europe! All those crops gathered from my fields have to be stored somewhere, after all.
First scenery project in quite a while, I’ve done lots of figure painting over the winter and spring but no scenery.
I pulled the top layer of paper off a sheet of corrugated cardboard and cut that up for the plowed parts, then used cardboard from an old shoebox for the base layers. There’s 4 6″x4″ fields and 1 larger 8″x6″ field.
The basecoat was a 1:1 mix of white glue and paint; the paint was a mix of two shades of brown, a shot of black and a bit of grey, just for variety. I squirt the glue and paint directly onto each field and mix with a 1.5″ housepainting brush, and transfer some of each field’s rough mix of paint to the other fields, so they’re all mostly the same colour without having to mix paint seperately in a container. The 1:1 paint and glue mix toughens and seals scenery nicely; it’s my usual primer coat for almost all scenery projects.
An entire week since my last substantial post! The horror, how will our dedicated readership cope?
I’ve been painting up an English Civil War/Thirty Years War storm this week, filling that inevitable post-Lead Painters League void with 40-odd plastic pike-and-shotte foot and a dozen horse. You all saw 5 of the horse in one of my LPL entries, of course, the rest are taking shape nicely and all of the foot now have most of their basic paint on them. Sunday the 29th we’re running a 1000pt Field of Glory: Renaissance big battle, and I’m breaking one of my long-standing rules by fielding figures that aren’t even anywhere near finished just to get something on the table. At least they’re not straight-up Primered Legions — there are depths to which I will not stoop.
No pictures of my WiP paintjobs, but I’ll take the camera to tomorrow’s big game and try to get some reasonable shots to share here.
The Lead Adventure Forum is, of course, one of the greatest collections of creative wargaming minds I’m aware of. A random sampling of current coolness there that should be more widely known: Chicken Race on the Arumbaya, in which the estimable Hammers plans a pulpish steamboat race with a South American feel and some great-looking boats. Also, Boggler’s converted Improvised Back-of-Beyond Armoured Truck, very nice conversions of diecast toy trucks.
Elsewhere on the web (elseweb?) An Evil Giraffe has done his own versions of my riverbank pieces, and very nice they are too. He used broken cork sheet for his banks, so it has more texture (but also more height) than mine.
Finally, also via LAF but worthy of being mentioned on it’s own, Sarissa Precision have started selling a very, very nice looking line of 28mm laser-cut and -etched urban buildings that are perfect for pulp! Information here on the Sarissa site, and on sale here in their online store. I can’t wait to have some spare money to throw Sarissa’s way, the buildings are a good size (6″x4″ or 8″x6″ footprints and stackable for extra floors) and a fair price with enough detail to be interesting but not too fussy that they’re impractical. Hopefully at some point they offer their windows, doors and other details seperately, or even just the building fronts for those of us comfortable cutting our own side and rear walls.
Photos tomorrow or Monday of the ECW/TYW big-game madness, I promise!
Found, buried in my harddrive, another couple of forgotten work-in-progress shots from the first round of shoreline/riverbank construction back in June 2009. The rest of the construction was written up last week.
These riverbanks or shorelines made from picture-framing board (mattboard). I did the first set back in 2009 and another batch in the winter of 2010. They’re designed to form one edge of a playing board, especially on the 2’x2′ playing areas common to .45 Adventures. One of the really nice things about games like 45A that encourage smaller playing areas is that terrain projects become a whole lot more managable — no more having to crank out eight feet of river just to have enough to be usable on the table! Each segment is 12″ (1 foot) long and 5″ deep, 4″ of river and 1″ of banks. The banks are the same mattboard as the rest, to keep them as low-profile as possible. The painting is black and two colours of blue, damp-blended right on the card. I tried to keep the edges mostly matched while painting the pieces. The water portions then got about six or so coats of acrylic gloss varnish so they looked like water. If I was going to paint them again, I’d do the water areas a greener shade with less black, as is often seen in murky jungle rivers.
Another revival from the old Brian’s Wargame Pages version of the site, and one that I should have brought forward ages ago! You can see the Esquimalt Drydock on Google Maps for a sense of scale that wasn’t available ten years ago when I first posted the photos. — Brian, 22 Feb 2011
In the summer of 2001 I was roommates with a guy who worked in the drydock here in town. He turned into a real asshole after being laid off, but while he was still working he gave me a tour of the yard. I brought my camera, and these pics should inspire people looking for new industrial modern or SF scenery projects!
One thing that would be very difficult to reproduce on the gaming table, except maybe in 6mm, would be the sheer scale of the place. I didn’t have my wide-angle lens with me, so I didn’t even try for some real area photos. The drydock itself is 1100 feet long; the two big cranes pictured below are several hundred feet tall. There were two fair-sized ships in the drydock when I was there, and they could have accomodated a third with no difficulty. And this isn’t even that big a drydock, by maritime engineering standards. The ones that can accomodate nuclear-powered aircraft carriers are even bigger…
Wargamers interested in industrial scenery or future-tech industrial landscapes (Necromunda style) should find plenty of inspiration here! Even if you can’t reproduce the scale, the clutter, details and fixtures should provide some ideas.
Click any image below for a (slightly) larger view. Keep in mind these are refugees from the Old Web, when 600px wide was a Big Image.