By John ‘Scarab’ Salmond
Finished: July 24, 2007
Well this all started with some request from local gamers. Most of these ideas have been around since the beginning of painting figs in one form or another. I like to figure things out on my own because I believe that is half the fun so this is my spin on basing figs. I have decided to use plain base because of the volume of bases and example I will be doing. I will be breaking this tutorial up in stages. For example I will be starting of with how I do dirt because that is the foundation for most bases. When I move to water I won’t be repeating the dirt stage of the basing. I don’t want to repeat a previous method so I will only mention it. I am also going to change up the material portion of my tutorial. I will mention material as I use it. So lets get started.
When working with base you can change things up a bit by carving some of the base away for depth and character. In the example below you will notice one base has been chopped up in preparation for adding water. I cut a piece of sheet styrene to glue on the bottom of the base so I don’t have a problem with the water leaking. You can also cut part of the base away for rocks or other objects. I use Bondini Gel for all of my super glue needs including figs.
When applying the paint you can be a little generous. The reason for thinning the paint is because it seeps into all of the small cracks and also allows for some of the original rock color to show through.
After it is all dry I begin the dry brush process. For this example I will use four different colors for dry brushing. Dry brushing is when you apply paint to your brush and then remove most of the paint with a cloth. This allows you to brush the object and apply a minimal amount of paint on the leading edges of the object.
Once you have the dirt down you can do a variety of vegetation depending on what your theme is. Lets start with the basics, grass. I buy my static grass in bulk and mix it up myself. This allows me to control my colors.
I first decide what my over all goal is with the theme I am trying to achieve. I then place some dapples of white glue on my bases.
I then begin to spread the glue around with a toothpick. When I apply grass I want to give the illusion that the grass extends beyond the base so I try not to bunch it up in small globs. You’ll see after I spread it around.
I use tweezers to apply the grass. I smash the grass into the glue and the flip the base upside down and tap the bottom. This makes the grass stand up more. You can also vary you colors depending on the theme. Green grass for summer woodland and light brown for snowy dead grass.
I like to add some tall grass to add depth and variety from time to time. I also buy this in several different colors and mix them together. Grasses are usually never the same color even in the same clump. Note the four color in a row and the one that is a mixture of all the grass.
After I mix them I make one end of the grass stalk uneven. I cut the other end with scissor and apply white glue to the end. I then apply it to the base. Let it dry just a bit and then spread it out some so it is not all standing straight and stiff.
You will notice that the base on the left is using some clump foliage. The base in front has a plant on the right I took from the Sheet Moss. You may also notice that the white glue is not dry yet on my grass and fallen trees. I am impatient that way. The static grasses are also different colors.
I could go on for a long time on vegetation because of the wide variety. You can make little mushrooms like I do on most of my figs with pinheads. You can also sculpt mushrooms to add. There are companies that sell small leaves for an autumn look. This list goes on.
Once you have applied the glue and baking soda mixture. Sprinkle dry baking soda over the bases and let it dry completely before you brush it off. Sometimes you may want to apply the snow before your static grass is dry so some of the dry mix gets into the static grass. This gives a cool effect.
You can do water in several different ways. You can cut part of your base away or you can apply the water with out removing any of your base. You will need to complete the dirt phase of your basing. Where every you apply the water you will need to paint it first. I like to go with a dark green.
Now you have some bases that blow mine away. All you have left is to paint the edge black and you are ready to crush your enemy. I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. If you have any questions please contact me. I will cover some fun stuff in my next adventure in basing.
John ‘Scarab’ Salmond