Craig's ice cool bitchin' table!

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Offline CraigM

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Craig's ice cool bitchin' table!
« on: December 11, 2012, 07:10:56 pm »
As some of you might know I recently bought a house. One of the things that has kept me going through the endless DIY required to get it shipshape has been the knowledge that at the end of it all I could make my own gaming table - something I've never had before. And that time has come!

What were once doors on a hideous built-in wardrobe are now transformed into 4x2 boards (they are actually slightly bigger - but I have a plan to deal with that later). I decided to try and go for an ice theme table to match my Legion basing - they are painted with a very dark blue base and highlighted almost up to white:



The board is already slightly textured from the dodgy "suede leather" purple paint they used (what taste the previous owners had!) so I went at it with a big brush and some old acrylic paint from back in the days when I used to paint big stuff:



My plan is to sponge or drybrush over this in progressively lighter colours later on to break up the (very) dark blue. I'm not entirely sure about this step though - thoughts welcome! I think I want to vary the texture and tone a bit - is a sponge a decent way to do this?



Here's a close-up of the base table texture after painting. I didn't want to use sand to texture the table as you can end up with wobbly-model syndrome and also it tends to come off. So for now this is a decent enough starting point:



To add some different textures in a few places I've ordered a couple of textured wallpaper samples. Again, I didn't want anything so bumpy that models wouldn't balance, but enough to break up the monotony. I'm not entirely sure how to use them yet, I might just rip them up a bit and glue them on randomly (part of me really wants to add in steamroller scenario boxes and such but I can't decide if this is a bad idea - especially with 2013 coming)



Then, as I was waiting for the paint to dry I decided to try out my new toy, a hotwire cutter. One of the benefits of moving house is excessive amounts of materials tend to build up, such as polystyrene. As such, I have enough to make lots and lots of hills and things. I know it's not as durable as styrofoam, but it's what I have to hand for the moment. Here are my first attempts at some modular hills:





And a close-up of the edge details. I want to use stepped hills because I don't like it when a model is partially on a hill and can still benefit from it - also you can't place a model in an ambiguous way on these, it's either on or not on. I know this method become more complicated for larger based models, but I think some compromises can be made for them.





That's all for now. I am open to suggestions for how to apply the next stage of the painting. I can't decide whether to sponge or drybrush - or even just wet blend with big brushes. I'm also looking for suggestions for how to model forests and linear obstacles. I'm thinking of bringing in some more steampunk-style elements, like piles of scrap and a large metal bridge I made ages ago. Thoughts?
« Last Edit: December 12, 2012, 01:01:16 pm by CraigM »

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Offline Jonagon

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Re: Craig's [awaiting name] table!
« Reply #1 on: December 11, 2012, 07:42:35 pm »
Awesome start! Look forward to playing on it.

A lot of people go for a kind of angular broken up material on ice boards, maybe you could do that with your textured stuff?

Like this I mean..


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Offline roland murat

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Re: Craig's [awaiting name] table!
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2012, 08:13:57 pm »
That looks great Craig. Good work
Bought: 20
Painted: 11

Boo at Deathwing. Boo!

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Offline jackhoneysett

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Re: Craig's [awaiting name] table!
« Reply #3 on: December 11, 2012, 09:22:24 pm »
Love it, Craig! Can't wait to run my warpwolves across it :)

I think the effect on your bases will look good on the tabletop, perhaps go for sponging to get a patchy snow look. I like the idea of using those tiles to create frozen rivers of ice (a la the picture jonagon posted). As for the hills, stepped makes sense to me, I can't stand balancing models on sloped surfaces.

For the name, how about "Craig's ice cool bitchin' table"?
You're welcome, that one's for free.

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Offline Steve H

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Craig's [awaiting name] table!
« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2012, 09:29:21 pm »
I like the sponging idea... And everything looks splendid indeed! Big thumbs up for stepped hills!
In the style of Tom Hale... F*ck Ushabti!!!

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Offline fatolaf

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Re: Craig's [awaiting name] table!
« Reply #5 on: December 12, 2012, 10:21:04 am »
Cover the hills in PvA buddy, then use a spray can to base it,, then add flock applied through a sieve..sorted..

Looking good so far, keep it up  :thumbsup:

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Offline CraigM

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Re: Craig's [awaiting name] table!
« Reply #6 on: December 12, 2012, 12:23:09 pm »
Have already begun pva-ing the hills. Hopefully that will make them a bit more sturdy. I'm not planning on using any flock though, I want them to be fairly mess-free. The theme for the board is a kind of desolate ice waste (a bitchin one) which is made up of shards of ice and fairly dark overall colour. I think I'll probably avoid snow effects too to save the trouble of it getting everywhere. Could probably get away with some on the scenery elements though I guess.

To start with the scenery is aimed at warmahordes, so mostly hills, forests and walls. I don't want to use traditional stone walls so was thinking of creating kind of ruptured ice plates, where the ice has split and thrust up through the rock (why there is ice under the rock is anyone's guess).

Really not sure about the forests though. I don't want to just use normal trees, not sure what could make an appropriate forest "counts as" - perhaps some kind of frozen dead tree arrangement?

Will definitely have to make a "thin ice" lake to use as shallow water.  :wink;m::

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Offline CraigM

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Re: Craig's ice cool bitchin' table!
« Reply #7 on: December 21, 2012, 09:41:43 pm »
Got a bit more done this evening. Started off by adding a bit of texture to the hills using something I found in an art shop called "modelling paste". Seems good so far, just spread it on with a palette knife to cover the polystyrene texture and hopefully help to protect it a bit.





Also started sponging the table. I'm not sure if I'll keep it like this but it's ok for a start.





And finally, my first couple of attempts at linear obstacles (that's walls to anyone who doesn't play warmachine). They are standard 1"x6" and not higher than 1". Eventually they will be textured with the modelling paste as well:




Probably need to get on with forests next but still not entirely sure how to do them.

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Offline Jonagon

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Re: Craig's ice cool bitchin' table!
« Reply #8 on: December 22, 2012, 01:07:17 pm »
That is pretty bitchin'!

Looking good, I like the random sponge effect, though maybe it looks a bit.. 'spongy' closer up?

lol @ modelling paste, Any idea what's in it? Looks pretty useful..

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Offline fatolaf

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Re: Craig's ice cool bitchin' table!
« Reply #9 on: December 22, 2012, 04:39:59 pm »
We sell the Vallejo version of modelling paste, designed to give scenery texture, very handy stuff