Paint Rack Stone Stairs

Published 15 December 2022

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I made more stairs; this time to thinking as a terrain piece for a game, but rather as a display element for putting my painted minis.

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It all started with this paint rack I wasn't using anymore. I used it in the past, when I was painting mostly miniatures (and not terrain), but I've now moved to larger paint pots that don't fit in those holes anymore (my miniature paints are now in a drawer).

So, instead of throwing it away, I recycled it into terrain.

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I started by removing the various ledges, to keep the overall structure.

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I glued it all on some foamcare, and added more glue at the joints to reinforce it. I then added styrofoam blocks to act as pillars to put cardboard on, to simulate the steps shape.

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I did that shape for all steps, using whatever cardboard I had around.

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I then glued bricks one by one, starting from the bottom.

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And with everything covered.

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I covered it all with spackle. The way I do it is as follow:

  • Add a blob of spackle somewhere
  • Spread it with a flat object. Here, I was able to cover about 1/3 of a step with one blob
  • Use a wet brush to spread it further and really go into the holes
  • Use a paper towel to wipe the excess, removing what's on the top of the stones, but keeping what's in the crevices between them.

It's the messier part of the project.

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Then, covered with black glue, to act as a basecoat and protective layer.

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Messy overbrush of grey. The difference in shape of the stones already gives a nice look. But because it's a large piece, it's also pretty boring.

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Adding a second drybrush, of a lighter gray to add more nuances.

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Still boring, so I'm now painting individual stones in various colors. I'm using diluted paint so the underlying gray shows through.

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I added green, which in retrospect didn't fit so well with the overall scheme.

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So I added more beiges and browns.

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Finally I added one last drybrush of a pale beige, followed by a dark wash to make the whole tone more uniform.

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As it was still too uniform, I used the secret technique that makes every terrain piece better: flocking.

I started by adding blobs of glue wherever my paint job was shitty. For example in the corners, where the drybrush didn't get, or when I accidentally splashed some unrelated color.

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Using again a wet brush, I spread each glue blob a bit.

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I started by adding a few fake plants here and there. And then randomly sprinkled different flock colors here and there in no specific pattern.

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I then add a mix of cooking herbs I have, to simulate leaves. And splashed it with a mix of water and PVA glue.

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Let it dry overnight, and here is the final result.

If I were to do it again, I would try an oil wash instead of my water based one. I tends to soak the underlying material and such a simple texture would be a great way to test oil washes (I'm afraid to mess up my build though, but hey this is how you learn new things).

I would add more details, like discarded tools, forgotten camp fires and such, to give more character to the build.

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