Earth - Dry Soil Effect

by -Matt Cexwish-

posted by Matt

Inspiration: 




I would like to show you something first that inspired me some time ago in my Classes at the University... If you follow this link you will find the Video of a very inspiring Architectual Approach towards Working with Earth more directly to build a House at the Seaside of Costa De La Muerte in Spain... I was fascinated by this because of a couple of reasons (really like the idea of Casting things, Positives and Negatives, Cutting through Things, Sections, Finding Space, etc. ...), here the main reason for showing is to make you understand that Finding New Effects in Miniature Building and Painting should be seen as an Exploration more then anything else... It could be interesting to Explore those Techniques and and try to find Use for them in Miniatures as well...:)... You are invited...
Today we will show you how to create a Dry Soil Effect very much like this one here after the Yunnan Drought in Korea a couple of years ago (Read More Here, Plenty Of Impressive Pictures...) ... 


What Do You Need...?: 

This is what you will need to recreate the Dry Soil Effect...
Your Base (A Wooden Plinth or a Plastic Base...)
Moltofill Reparatur (in the very likely case that you won´t be able to get Exactly this stuff, don´t worry... it is basically a very common compound paste that you can buy in any Hardware Store around the World used to fill gaps in Walls, etc. ... If they pretend not to know it ask for Vinylacetat Copolymer Dispersion Paste... Happy Faces Guaranteed...^_^...)...
Superglue with Cyanoacrylate Activator (not vital, but will make Glueing so much more fun...:)...)
Modelling Tools (like a Regular Tool and some Clay Shapers...)
Miliput
... And One Boiled Egg (level of boiledness is up to your personal taste...;)...)

How Do You Proceed...?:  


 First, there was the Egg... If you watch carefully, you will notice just the same kind of Effect that we are looking after if we want to recreate the Dry Soil Effect, Sharp, very Refined Edges and some impressive Random Fractures... Smash your Egg gently at one End and remove the Shell... Try to damage as little as possible to retreive a fairly continuous piece of intact Shell...



The Next Step is to Prepare your Wooden Plinth... Roughen up the Surface with a Drill or another Power Tool to allow the Glue to sink in deeper to achieve a better Grip... Now you can glue the Shell on it (Glue goes on the Outer Shell...) and use some Activator to fasten up the process... Once Settled, you can peel off the Eggskin from your base... Use a Sculpting Tool to carve some Holes in the Eggshell, it will help to modulate the Crevices that will follow afterwards... The Eggshell is not the Final surface, but a kind of supporting structure for the Moltofill that helps the Cracks to be created in a strange kind of a slightly controlled way...




After the Egg Shell Foundation is done you apply a generous amount of Moltofill on the Whole Surface... You should work pretty roughly in order to achieve a very chaotic Result... Then simply turn the whole Base upside down and press it against a Smooth Surface without too much pressure to flatten the Top... Cut the Edges Clean and off to the Kitchen... Place the Base in the Oven (around 200° Celsius for about 5 - 8, maybe 10 Minutes, not more...!... This is important, because we will need to keep an soft Core with a Hard Shell, a completely baked Base is pretty worthless...)...





We Ain´t Wasting No Good Eggs In Here, so that´s what you do with the Eggs... Time for your "Welcome To The Jungle" Club Sandwich... You are in the Kitchen anyways, let´s use the Waiting time for comething tasty...
You will need...
2 Slices Of Toasted Bread
Some Mayonaise
Ketchup
2 Slices Chicken Breast
2 Slices Ham
2 Slices Bacon (Baconated...)
1 Slice of Cheese (Edamer, Gouda, all good...)
1 Boiled Egg
1 Tomato
Some Cress... Some Curry... Some Salt...
1 Tasty, Fresh and Dangling Banana
Salad
Assemble the Sandwich by Toasting the Bread, Smear Both Slices with Mayonaise and the Kechup... Then Start Pileing up the Components one after another, the Higher the Better... The Last Component should be the Banana, that you have cut into pretty Slices too... Munch it up and Enjoy your Jungle Meal, Uggggh...:D...



The Base Surface should be ready by now... You will notice that it is now dry and considerably hard, some small Cracks might have appeared... Remove the Base from the Oven and get back to your Working Place... 


You should notice that the Core is still Soft, allowing us to Crush the Hard Shell much like an Egg... Now you take your Sculpting Tool and SMASH the Surface much as you Smashed the Eggshell before... Do it locally with the Blunt End of your Sculpting Tool and try not overdoing it... There is no right or wrong, proceed smacking the Surface til you are pleased with the result... You will see that the Eggshell gives some kind of support from below, forming some "islands" eventually...




Use the Eggshell to finally add some extra detail due to their sharp Edges, squeeze them in where you think it might fit in well... Voilá...


Now it is time to put an Foundation on your Base and Paint it according to what you observe in Nature... I have used some GW Graveyard Earth as a Start, then applied a lot of different Semi Glossy Washes (Devlan Mud, Vallejos Tank Brown, A Bit Black, Scorched Brown, Brown Ink...), then I have Drybrushed with Ivory... Done...)...


Thank you for your Time...^_^... Hope to see your Results soon, too...:)... Next Time I Will Write Something About Earth In General, So Stay Tuned... Now Music!






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