Friday, 1 December 2017

Hedging your bets

In the ethos of scenic modelling being applicable in all scales I felt I ought to elaborate on the scene presented recently in black and white.

The hedgerow itself is strips of rubberised horsehair teased out and used with the strands vertically. This was then treated a la Gordon Gravett - sprayed with matt brown and grey primer aerosols. Once dry the usual methodology followed of hairspray and foliage fibre mat. To add to the colour variation and the effect of being different bushes three colours were used from the Skale Scenics, Woodland Scenics and Green Scene ranges. This was followed by more hairspray and additional scatter.


After planting the bottom edge looked rather too straight so I added some small sprigs of sea moss to break up the edge and provide some more variety. I must get some concrete paint on that culvert outlet...

The overall view now of the project now looks like this. The eagle eyed will spot an extra tree to the rear left, a sea moss based silver birch (which was an experiment with a strengthened and textured trunk) has taken root at the back of the layout.


Another look at that view up the lane... there will be a short length of fence on the right hand side of the lane between the growths. I wonder if I will be able to pose O9 stock here for photography to and really fool the eye?


Colin

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Forest in a box

Having teased you with a black and white glimpse of my 009 project the other day made me realise that I haven't covered a couple of scenic aspects that appear in that picture, so this is the first of two posts to rectify that omission.

Five sea moss trees were created to go across the centre of the layout. This was relatively quick process, these are 'background' trees after all. The stems were firstly soaked in warm water to re-shape any bent and squashed bits and then left to dry out. Once dry they were reduced to the desired height, well actually they were a bit bigger than planned, but with sea moss that just means lopping off the lower branches making ready made bushes in the process... With hindsight i would have painted the stems with a mix of Halfords matt brown and grey primer aerosols). After that it's just ultra hold hairspray and foliage.


The five new trees and their associated growths form an effective break across the centre of the layout, almost hiding the bridge behind the workshop building. From another view point it can be seen that this is partially achieved by having some growths coming out of the join between the rock face and bridge abutment behind the shed, effectively screening the abutment from view.


From the other side the screening is equally effective, you can hardly see the buildings on the other side. I have added all sorts of extra growths along the path and around the bridge from the stash of smaller branches I had treated alongside the trees.


More soon...

Colin

Saturday, 25 November 2017

Black and White

I've been making steady progress on my 009 project of late so won't bore you too much with detail about the processes, but did feel it worth sharing this view that I took and then played about with...


Colin

Friday, 27 October 2017

Of Muck and Raspberries

I thought that it might be useful to show the basic ground cover method that I have now started to use on my 009 project. This basic layer is my gunk mix (emulsion paint/PVA and powdered filler) painted on, and a blend of Woodland Scenics Fine Turf and very fine sand sieved over it whilst wet.


There are few bald patches, some of these are intentional as part of the effect that I'm after and will be blended in to the end result. Others will be hidden under the next layer and mainly occur around the edges as the mix seems to dry quicker there.  The large gap at the top is where a building and scenic feature will be positioned.

Jobs like this take advantage of short windows of opportunity. The previous morning a task I undertook was to add some raspberry bushes along the lane. The producer is Tasma Products and the range can be found here (but trade-only). These went into holes drilled in the scenery, glued with PVA. I did give the bushes a blast of hairspray before sticking them in as I feared loosing the berries and leaves!

ModelsOct1723.jpg

I have used 6 out of the 12 in the pack and I think that might be enough, there is a group of three as seen above, plus one on the right of the shot. The other two can be seen in the shot below, previously rejected until I played about with the photo editing software on my phone! I think that they are a good product, if a little pricey, but I couldn't easily make that myself very quickly so that's my excuse. Maybe I can use some of the unused examples on an O9 project in the future?



Colin

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Touching in my Roots

When I bedded in the taller of the trees on the 009 project (Hornby describe this one as a Sycamore). I thought it might be useful to take some pictures on my phone as I did.

Here is the tree as glued in with Gorilla PVA before I started to blend it in.


The 'gunk' mix, it lives in an old tester pot that formed it's basis some time ago (this mix is towards the end if it's life despite a recent revival). Application will be by dental tool.


Applying the mix and getting some shape to the top of the roots.


Applying acrylic paint, whilst the plaster mix was still wet underneath.


That's basically it - the colour I mixed is not that close a mix to the Hornby colour and I may need to touch in some visible bits of the original colour at the top of the tree to blend it all together.

Colin

Friday, 20 October 2017

More Green Grass... and Trees Too!

I thought I would share a few more pictures of progress with scenery on my (whisper it) 009 project. When this was last seen on the blog I had added hanging basket grass to the cutting side and some basic ground cover elsewhere.

After some thought about whether to change tack and go for a ground foam based approach, I continued on with a few changes to approach, notably using my 'gunk' mix - emulsion paint/PVA/filler - as the basis for ground cover, quickly adding a sieved on layer of Woodland Scenics 'Fine Turf' whilst wet to give a good mix of colour and texture. This finish can be seen in the picture below, with the addition of a representation of tree roots made using string and covered in more gunk. This makes up for the lack of any roots on the Hornby Skale Scenics trees.


Dead leaves, in the form of tea leaves and a sprinkle of sawdust, were added to the ground and held in place with PVA and matt medium. The Peco flexible fencing was left over from my 4mm 'Inglenook' project years ago. I had sprayed this with matt varnish for that project but the stuff is so damn flexible the paint falls off it! It was weathered with acrylics prior to installation and touched back in again afterwards where the paint was chipped during installation. The trees were fixed in place using 'Gorilla' PVA and once set the roots were joined to the trunks using more gunk and colour blended in with acrylic paints.


These images also illustrate my experiments with scrubby bushes. These were made as a batch on the workbench using Green Scene meadow grass mat, torn into random shapes, scrunched up and sprayed with hairspray then sprinkled in various foams. They are PVA'd in place once left overnight for the hairspray to dry. Some of these growths have appeared in the cutting at the top of the rock face.


This is the present state of the project. The tree at the right is another Skale Scenics example treated in the same manner as the smaller ones, including a waft of matt varnish over the branch structure; a few bald patches given extra density using offcuts of hanging basket liner and the whole thing covered in hairspray and given extra foliage coverage. This is good practice for the next trees which will be newer growths made using sea foam.
 

Colin

Friday, 6 October 2017

Box it Up

Not directly O9 related but the main focus of recent modelling time, I have now completed construction of a protective/display box for my 009 project. This is a miniature version of that used under 'Shifting Sands' and based on those used by Steve Bennett under his various micro layouts.

Construction is simple, 5 hardboard panels and 12 x 21mm pine section. Each side panel is framed top and sides with the pine section, then left for the PVA to set. After some tidying up of edges I paired each side and end and joined, the picture below was taken at this point. At this point the volume occupied by a very small layout seems to increase dramatically...


Having assembled the two halves I added the top and once everything was together all the edges were sanded smooth and the timber was given a couple of coats of varnish with a rub down in between. On the top four triangular pieces of plywood are in place to hold the layout in place whilst in use.


Bolting the layout inside is achieved with four M4 machine screws locating in captive bolts underneath the baseboard, located within blocks of wood. On the left you can see that there is an additional length of stripwood within the box edge. Whilst I would like to say that this is intentional to accommodate the plug sockets that extend beyond the board edge on this side, it is more a case that I was a little too generous in the clearances within the box!


Colin