Thursday, December 31, 2015

Mantic Elf Dragon Lord Wip: Part 5

In this post, Ryan finishes up his Mantic Elf Dragon Kindred Lord by basing the model.

This is part five of a WiP project for the Brush With Death: Texas contest. The contestants are challenged to paint up a model from Mantic Games, straight out of the box, with little to no modification.
Part 1 of the project, the assembly/prep, can be found here.Part 2 of the project, where I paint the red and dark brown, can be found here
Part 3 of the project, the underbelly, teeth, horns, and freehand flames, can be found here
Part 4 of the project, the rider, can be found here.

Now that the model is painted, it's time to do the base!
Anyone who's talked modeling with me can probably attest to the fact that I hate basing. I hate it very deeply. For this one, I decided I was going to have fun with it, and made it as interesting as I could!
The dragon comes on a 75x75mm base, which is bigger than I'm used to dealing with. For my first step, I outlined the portions of the base that would be in contact with the model, to make sure I didn't glue any major components in awkward places.

I wanted to go with a rockier look, so I could use some cool tones in the base to add contrast to the warm colors of the model. Since I hate the look of rocks glued to a base for large rocks, I used my typical substitute: pine bark. With a box cutter, razor saw, and couple of chunks of pine bark, I made some interesting rock-seam effects. I secured them to the base with wood glue, as PVA glue tends to break off pine bark in my experience.
Rocks glued to the base
With the rocks glued down, I knew I wanted some thicker tallus rocks as gravel, so I added glue to the spots around the footprints. Eventually the entire thing would be glued, but for now...
Preparing to add scree
Using a pre-made shaker of larger rocks, I shook them out onto the base, and then tapped it to get all the rocks into the glue.
Big rocks, check. Medium rocks, check.
Once the rocks were down, I added glue to the rest of the base, spread it out, and sprinkled it with sand. My basing sand has very small gravel from Woodland Scenics mixed in with it, so we end up with three different sizes of rocks on the base.
Soooo boring!

After giving it a few moments to start drying, I set the model on top, to make sure there were depressions for its feet. This breaks the illusion of the model hovering across the surface of the ground, while also not burying it in the flocking material.
Dragon, perched on a base, perched on a mayonnaise jar lid
Once the glue dried, I painted the base black with some CeramCoat acrylic paint. This is thick craft paint, like you find in a hobby store. I usually only use it for terrain and basing, as it's extremely thick, doesn't dilute with water well, and wears out paint brushes. However, it's great for drybrushing, and it holds up to daily use really well.
Once black, I painted the sand with several shades of brown, and base coated the larger rocks with Hippo Grey.
Once that paint had dried, I then applied a number of ink washes: purple, red, brown, black, and green, in a patchwork fashion over the rocks (and occasionally the base). I did this because rocks are not grey - they're every color in between! Leaving these as recess colors makes the rocks look really realistic, without having to do five layers of highlighting for each shade.

The base, after the ink wash stage.
Once the ink washes had dried, I hit it with a quick coat of Vallejo Matte medium, to knock down some of the shininess of the ink washes, then highlighted up the rocks up to Wolf Grey, and did a final highlight on the grass with Elf Fleshtone.
The base, final highlighting
Finally, I used wood glue to secure the model to the base.
Finished model?
Right now, I'm merely waiting for the humidity to get low enough to hit the model with some sealant, and apart from the possible addition of some static grass, it's done!
Left side of the finished model
Shot of the rear of the model

Right side of the finished model

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