Sunday, 8 May 2011

Out of the dark woods at last!

It has been spring vacation time here, and I spent a few days in Sendai with family and friends.  Sendai city itself is very much on the mend, and while a few buildings remain damaged or shuttered up due to the earthquake, things are otherwise getting back to normal, with well-stocked shops again.    

However, to the east of the city- the port side and the areas all along the Pacific coast- they are still dealing with the huge task of cleaning up from the tsunami.   
Natori, a suburb of Sendai, a photo taken by a reporter not long after the tsunami. Much of the area still looks like that now. The desolated landscape reminded me of one of those bleak pictures you see taken during the Passchendaele battles in 1917, but with wrecked and abandoned Toyotas and Hondas instead of tanks. 
Very, very sobering.

So when I got back, it took a while to get into a hobby frame of mind, but I really wanted to finish those trees- if for no other reason than to clear my painting table!  And finish them I did.  Here they are.
The bases were textured, with cork chips and small pebbles added for variety.  I then "fleshed out" some of the trees with more hobby flocking, and sealed it all with a clear matte lacquer spray.  

After that, I took a can of matte black acrylic spray and sprayed some of the interior areas for depth.  Then I gave them all a few passes of Armour Yellow spray paint, from one direction only.  
After looking at some trees in the sunshine, I realized that the sun and sky can make them appear many shades of green, yellow, and even white.  So I decided on an impressionistic approach, and using the side of a fairly broad brush I just "tapped" on successive layers of light green,  mustard yellow and finally (and sparingly) bright yellow.  I'm very pleased with the way they turned out.  

The bases were painted with artists acrylics, raw umber drybrushed with some raw sienna.  I picked out the rocks with various shades of grey, and ran a brown ink wash over them for depth.  Finally, I just added some static grass and that was it.  In a few days I'll seal the flocking with another spray of matte lacquer spray.

So they are all set to go for our Black Powder game this coming weekend.  No doubt they will be used by Matt's riflemen as cover from which to shoot up my Frenchies.  


The Angry Lurker said...

Nice trees, still a landscape in turmoil.

John de Terre Neuve said...

Those trees look great, I wish I could solve the problem of keeping the foliage stuck to the armatures.


Achilles said...

nice to know that you are alive and kicking (hobby-wise that is!)

Very good job on the woods!
Are you planning to bring them over for our next session on the 15th of May?

Docsmith said...

Fantastically good looking stands of trees - enough to gladden the heart of any arboreal fanatic and hiding places for Voltigeurs and Riflemen alike!


Rosbif said...

At first glance I thought the 2 photos were of the same landscape! Glad to read that things are beginning to return to semi-normal.

Good idea putting a terrain topic on La Bricole, too!