May 25, 2010

Terrain for Historicon - Part Seven

Here's the first of several posts on painting the boards. Not only are we going to paint the roads and river, but we are going to add some paint in areas of the grass to keep it from looking too much like a golf course!

The paints I used came from doing smaller projects with Games Workshops' jars. Rather than buying a dozen jars for each color, I painted small swatches on paper and took (another) trip to my local DIY store to get a quart of each color. The brand doesn't matter as long as you get matt acrylics. The colors I used are:

Next we are going to apply textured paint to all of the non-grass areas to form a base for the remaining painting we have to do. You can buy textured paint in lots of different styles. I bought an empty paint can from my local DIY superstore so I could mix this paint myself. There isn't an easy way to describe what the ratio should be. I poured  my 'Scorched Brown' paint into the can until it was about half full. Start by adding a small amount of sand to your paint and then stir it with a paint paddle. Pull the paddle out and while holding it above the can (pointing down so the run off goes back into the can), use a brush to thin out the remaining paint on the paddle. If the texture on the paddle looks good to you, you're finished! If not add a little more sand, stir it in, and repeat the process. If the paint becomes gummy, you went too far. Don't panic! Just add more paint - that's why we started with half a can...

You want to use an old brush to apply this stuff because it's tough on the bristles! The goal os to completely cover all of the filler, coffee grounds, tree bark, and whatever else you glued into your landscape. Vary the direction of your brushstrokes - you will be able to see the patterns of the strokes because of the sand, but if you pull from different directions, you will get a good smooth coat.

Then I painted all of the exposed areas expect the river. I also drybrushed and stippled some small areas of the grass and blended out the road and river banks for a smoother transition between earth and grass.

This looks crude so far, but as we build up the next four layers, it will begin to blend smoothly into the landscape. Here's a pic from an earlier project to show what things will look like in a few more days (we'll be painting the rocks after the earth areas are finished)...


  1. that looks very effective, nice looking table

  2. Great idea on the paint matching for terrain - thanks!