How to… Make your own jungle terrain

Just a quickie! quick and simple jungle terrain!

I bought some aquarium plants from my FLPS (Friendly Local Pet Store), picking up 2 packs of plants which totalled less than $8.  I figured they may look cool as either jungle/oasis scenery, or maybe as some scenery for an exotic alien world. So, here goes…

Step one:
These suckas are all joined together, so you’ll want to take your scalpel to them to separate them up. (Remember to cut away from yourself, kiddies!)

You’ll want to try and hack them off the base too, much easier than it sounds… I had to get a heavy duty Stanley knife to this mofo. You should then be left with the foliage, thus:

I did leave a couple of pieces on the base, although I did reduce the size of the base. This will make for some slightly higher pieces of terrain.

Step two:
Now you’ll want to get some foam board that you’ll a) have lying around or b) will go and score from the craft store for about $3 a sheet, which will last you for ages. Cut out the size of base that you want your scenery piece to be, then shave the edges at an angle to make it look more natural when you put it on your gaming surface. Don’t worry, it does’t have to be perfect, you’ll see why soon.

Then, when you have your base, glue your foliage on! Again, don’t worry too much about the weird base bits, this will be taken care of.

Step three:
This is my favorite part, the messy bit. Get your spackle (or ‘filler’ as we Brits call it) and some pumice, which is essentially sand mixed into paint, which works just as well if you don’t have access to pumice. Now liberally slap on your spackle first. Build it up where you want, like around the base of the leaves etc. I had also grabbed a couple of rocks out of the garden which I included on there too, to include a more natural feel. I brought the filler all the way up to the rocks too, to make them look buried:

I added a layer of the pumice after the filler had dried, you can see I left a ‘pathway’ through the piece to make a bit of a feature of it, and added a couple of skulls from my bitz box in there too…

Here is an example of the other piece made a little higher, more like a small outcrop of foliage:

Step four:
Paint the bastid!

Basecoat is Graveyard Earth, washed with Devlan Mud, drybrushed with Graveyard Earth>Bleached Bone>little bit of Skull White

Mud trail was basecoat Scorched Brown>Devlan Mud wash>drybrushed Scorched Brown>Scorched Brown with Bleached Bone>little bit of Bleached Bone

Now with drybrushing, and some scenic odds and sods added:

Another shot:

“be vewwy vewwy qwiet, I’m huntin’ aweiens!”

And that, dear readers, is it! you should be looking at a lovely new piece or pieces of scenery! and all for under $12!

Stay frosty

H.

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Space Wolves – B&C paint challenge completed!

I just recently (by the skin of my teeth) completed my painting vow for the Bolter and Chainsword painting challenge. Here are my Grey Hunters!

I’m very pleased with how they turned out! let me know what you think!

How to… Paint Tomb Kings – max results for minimum effort

In honor of the new, and rather delish Tomb Kings release last weekend, I wanted to post up a ‘how to’ article on painting up your undead forces in double quick time in readiness for battle.

As you may have seen in the current issue of White Dwarf, they give you some ideas for different techniques for painting your skeleton warriors. They look great, but are rather in-depth, probably too much so for those of you, like me, who are not only a full time computer masher during the day, but also a full time dad and part time rock star. My point being, you don’t have too much free time to paint.

Part the first:

Once your skellywags have been assembled (arguably the most time consuming part of this) you’re going to want to spray undercoat the little buggers. I’ve used Duplicolor Sandable Primer, matt white, which costs about $6 from any auto store, and is far superior to the expensive shite that Games Workshop tout as spray paint. I leave them overnight to dry, although they are dry to the touch in a few minutes, but I’m usually doing something else, yay for multitasking.

You should be looking at a nice, white skellie, yes? Good, then we can move onto…

Part the second:

Get a pot of Devlan Mud*, insert your wash brush, or other larger brush, then liberally slap it on all over the mini. I tend to do a second coat on things like the face and ribs, as they have the most detail. Try not to pool it if possible. Set aside to dry. I have been working on a unit of horse archers, as you can see. The GW washes dry, so by the time I have washed one, moved on to the second, the first is already dry.  You’ll already start to see things taking shape, thus:

Some of you out there may choose to stop at this stage, which is fine, but they still need to pop a little bit, IMO. This leads us nicely into…

Part the third:

This is where your little creepers will come to (un)life.  Get your brush that you use for drybrushing, open your Bleached Bone paint and drybrush them. This will give that extra dimension to them (whoah! 3-D!). It’ll pick out the ribs and facial features a little more, plus give them a little more ‘dry’ and sun bleached feel. You could even add another drybrush step here with Skull White, which I did, as I do it on just the face and ribs, very lightly:

The bone parts are done! Simple, eh?

Part the fourth – details:

You’ll still need to paint your quivers, bows and other bits after this, but again I keep it simple. For the bows I use a Mechrite red base, washed with Devlan Mud. The quivers with Hawk Turquoise washed with Devlan Mud (this is to give the overall feel of wear and dirt over a couple of centuries). The quiver flap and straps are base coated in Chaos Black, and a quick line highlight of Greatcoat Grey (PP3) and then Codex Grey . DONE! You can add details like hieroglyphs and what not, but the aim of this is to be quick, right?

Part the fifth – finishing touches:

Base ‘em! I use a pumice filler for the bases, as it looks like that dry, parched desert ground. Once it’s applied then dried, it’s basecoated with Snakebite Leather, then drybrushed with Bleached Bone, then a little bit of Skull White. Add a couple of tufts of desert flock and you should have a nice looking painted unit, ready to deal some serious arrow violence on your enemy:

 

Following this should get you your mass troops done in next to no time, allowing you to spend a bit more time on your character figures.

Let me know how you get on – good luck!

*I just bought a new pot of Devlan Mud the other day, as my other pot had run out. To my dismay, I find that it’s a slightly different shade, and almost looks like it’s got either Ogryn Flesh or Gryphonne Sepia in it. Bollocks!

How to… make your own movement trays.

With my first game of WFB looming rapidly on the horizon I picked up a pack of the plastic movement trays that GW produces. They’re ok, for models with bigger bases, but I wanted to create my own.  I’ll be playing Tomb Kings, and as such, will be using minis with smaller bases. Now, anyone who has seen the TK minis will see how spindly they are. This can prove to be a bit of a pain in the arse when it comes to moving them around, and I didn’t want to be wasting time arranging them properly everytime they marched around the battlefield.

Dutifully I went to JoAnne Fabric and picked up some mounting card. I already had foam card at home so I already have everything I need. Initially I was thinking of using just the foam card but realized that the skellies would practically be standing head and shoulders above the other minis. Hence the thinner and stronger mounting card.

With the mounting card, draw around your base. Do this for your frontage and your depth, depending on what size unit you’re fielding. As I will be making this for a unit of 10 skellie archers, frontage will be 5 with a depth of 2:

Once you have your base measured up, cut it carefully from the sheet of card. Keep the lines as straight as possible. This one became my ‘master’ so I can use it for making more bases whenever I needed. From here we draw around this again onto the mounting board. Then we draw a bigger box around it. This extra spacing will be where our lip runs around the edge of the base:

Cut this from your  sheet of card. You now have your base which encompasses the 10 bases, plus the lip around the edge. Everyone following this ok?

Now, to the foam board. Trace around the larger base you just cut. then, lay your original template (the 10 base one from step one) on top. Make sure the spacing around the edge is roughly equal then trace around it. Then you’ll need to cut (very carefully) this centre piece out. You should end up with something that looks like a licence plate holder:

Get some all purpose clear glue and glue your foam card license plate holder to the mounting card base. You should be looking at something similar to the picture above. Don’t worry if it doesn’t look perfect, we’ll be messing with that in a moment. I stuck my unit in it, just to give it a test fit:

Now, grab yer scalpel, or other sharp knife. We need to trim the edges down to give a more natural appearance, thus:

You’ll see now why it wasn’t a big deal if it didn’t all look totally straight, as you’ve changed it now anyway. You can be as zealous or reserved as you like here, it’s all down to personal preference.

We need to texture it now and you can do that one of two ways. First is to mix sand and PVA wood glue and paint this all over, or, if you want a quicker solution like me, you may have some ‘pumice’ which is available from most hobby stores. So, brab a brush and liberally slap it all over the outer ridge:

And you should end up with something like this:

The final stage is simple. You paint them! Paint them whatever color you need. As mine need to look all desert like, I start with a basecoat of Snakebite Leather:

Then a drybrush of Bubonic Brown and then finally Bleached Bone yields these results:

Thats it! you are done! I made 3 straight off, so I could put 2 units of skellie archers and a unit of Tomb Guard in them. They’re looking pretty sweet, and help give the army a uniform look.

Hope you liked this tutorial. More coming soon!

Paul