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Rock Pillars

There's nothing so reassuring as a big piece of rock to get in the way of the bullets, although ricochets can be a problem.


The hardest part about making these is finding the stones. Apart from that these are remarkably quick bits of scenery to make and the stone gives the pieces a satisfying weight. These particular ones came from a Greek beach, but beaches and rivers are not generally too good - the stones tend to be heavily rounded by tumbling in the water.This looks unrealistic for large rocks which in reality are usually much craggier.

The figures hiding behind the rocks are from Alternative Armies, but I'm afraid I don't know what the range is called.

Materials

  • Stones
  • Lichen
  • PVA
  • Mounting Board, Thin Plywood or Card for base
  • Sand
  • Flock
  • Construction

    Base material
    Cut an irregular piece of mounting board or thin plywood. A couple of the rocks above were based on thin card, but this warped a bit when the PVA was applied, so I wouldn't recommend it.

    Gap filling
    The best way to stick the stones down is with a blob of tile adhesive which will also fill any gaps beneath the stones. Otherwise you will need to fill the gap with plaster or filler. This can also be used to make the rocks look semi-embedded in the ground.

    Small Rocks
    To help make the rock look more natural, put some big patches of PVA around the base and sprinkle them with plenty of small stones. These can be painted in the same way as the rest of the base.

    Painting

    The best thing to do is to paint them as little as possible in order to let their natural colours show through.

    Optional Wash
    If the rocks are very pale then they may benefit from a dark brown wash, but with these I didn't bother.

    Drybrush
    The only painting that these needed was a quick drybrush with cream coloured paint. This was done at the same time as step 4) of the basing as described below.

    Desert/Arid Basing

    These rocks are based using my standard method for arid scenery.

    1) Sand Texture. The first stage was a coat of PVA which was sprinkled with sand and small stones.

    2) Base Coat. Once this is thoroughly dry, it was painted with brown emulsion. You could use acrylic, but emulsion is cheaper, and can be bought in small 'tester' pots.

    3) Blotchy Wash. This is then given highly dilute washes of a very dark brown in irregular patches over the surface. (Although with very small areas like these, this stage could easily be skipped.

    4) Drybrush. This was then drybrushed with 'Oatmeal' Sandtex masonry paint, although acrylic or emulsion would also be OK.

    5) Patches. Small irregular patches of brown were then dabbed on with an old brush. (Again with small areas like these, you could skip this stage too).

    6) Flock. Two different colours of flock were then sprinkled over blobs of PVA, which were painted on with an old brush. The flock used was a 'foam' flock rather than chippings.

    7) Lichen. Small pieces of lichen in pale colours were attached to the base.




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    2000. All rights reserved.
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