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Hello all! I am a very novice beginner to miniature painting, and have only been doing it for about a year or so. I feel like my skills are leveling up pretty quickly, but still need some advice.

 

My friend is trying to coax me into pen and paper RPGs like DnD and pathfinder, and we are currently doing a pathfinder session. To add flavor to the games and because I like to feel like I'm participating, I'm working on terrain and buildings. The first building that I'm nearing completion on is Tabletop World's Mansion.

 

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Because of the large size of the model (and the hope that I'll be getting more pieces, creating a city that will look like it all came from the same forest/quarry/paint shoppe) I went to various Hardware stores and bought actual high quality building/house paint. I'm a little concerned this was a bad move, since I know model paint is specifically made for small scales. The colors for the mansion were ripped from the Winchester Mystery House photos because I love the design and colors. 

 

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So the main question I have is regarding sealing. I've heard krylon matte spray can leave a sticky residue, and I want to avoid that. I was wondering what sealing spray I should use since I went with actual house paints. Because the parts where the house fits together are extremely snug, my desire is to paint on a gloss coat for the connecting parts, so when the mansion is put together/pulled apart the gloss coat will protect the paint better from rubbing off. Or will it stick together because of the gloss coat? Looking for advice on that. 

 

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Finally, the wood flooring I would like to look a little more aged. I'm kind of worried about adding grey or white with dry brushing but will probably end up doing that. The wood color was a brown paint I had mixed up at the hardware store, so I figured I would brush some burnt umber over it and then go with some kind of gray and then white for the aged look. 

 

This is almost finished, I'm very much a "good enough" worker and hobbyist, and so long as it looks decent on the table I'll be happy. I could certainly obsess over the tiny details for the next 10 years, but I like my sanity. Looking for some advice on the sealing/aging wood though! 

 

Thank you for reading my post. Sorry about the length.

Edited by Manateedream
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I'll address the sealing issue first:  I don't see why Krylon Matte would leave a sticky residue.  There do seem to be issues with Krylon and Bones minis, but resin doesn't off-gas like plastic does.  Provided your paint is dry, the matte spray should be fine.  The dry time is important, though. House paint takes way longer to dry than the normal paints I use, and the chemical composition is significantly different, so I'd wait a couple days for it to really finish. 

 

And regarding the rubbing-off issue:  Gloss coat does protect better, but only against relatively mild abrasion, like people picking up the miniature.  If two pieces of resin are going to rub together, the paint will wear off.  Gloss will protect it longer, but very shortly you'll find wear indicators.  To really protect it you'd want a polyurethane type varnish, but I wouldn't want to see your model covered up with that.  It's thick, too, and the snug fit may no longer fit at all!

 

My wood recipes vary, but I generally add white or gray to my darker color.  I've used raw umber, then added white to get my grays, or black then a drybrush of a mid brown topped with ivory.  My concern with your model is that the detail that lets drybrushing work (the texture of the wood grain) may be obscured by the thickness of the paint you used.  Luckily, you can try it and just paint it over if you don't like it!

 

I love the variety of stone colors you have on the lower level's floor.  Thanks for sharing.  I really enjoy TableTop World's models, even if I can't create an entire city from them.

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I'll address the sealing issue first:  I don't see why Krylon Matte would leave a sticky residue. 

 

My wood recipes vary, but I generally add white or gray to my darker color.  I've used raw umber, then added white to get my grays, or black then a drybrush of a mid brown topped with ivory.  My concern with your model is that the detail that lets drybrushing work (the texture of the wood grain) may be obscured by the thickness of the paint you used.  Luckily, you can try it and just paint it over if you don't like it!

 

I love the variety of stone colors you have on the lower level's floor.  Thanks for sharing.  I really enjoy TableTop World's models, even if I can't create an entire city from them.

 

The krylon matte spray news is very good news, I will likely buy a can of that and spray it like crazy. I guess I'll be resigned to the paint rubbing off on the sections it connects in, which isn't the end of the world, as most of those parts will be unseen as the model sits as background for campaigns. 

 

As for the drybrushing, it still has a decent amount of detail left, but I agree that the thickness of the pain might has adversely affected the detail. I'm not too worried about it, especially since the inside is so much less important than the outside and will be sparingly used. I know it's not good to use house paint but for the amount of paint I needed to buy in bulk it was the only way to go (for me). 

 

Thank you for the floor comment! The outside basement walls and the chimneys are done exactly the same, they are just harder to see because the direct light isn't hitting it from the sides and there is a shadow from the upper floors blocking the stones.

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Thank you. I also did the Windmill which looks alright, except for the extreme super glue boiling over at the spokes. I will probably post it and the Mansion in the completed section after I finish all the minor touch ups "drybrushing" (if it works because of the thick base coat) and sealing.

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Just remember to do the sealing in light coats.  You can do multiple light coats, but heavy coats will produce a much more satin finish.

Some people prefer to use a gloss coat first for protection, more than one coat in some cases, then a matte finish at the end.  

 

Let us know how it works out.  I've never used house paints on models, so I'm curious if it will work any differently than acrylic hobby paints when sprayed with Krylon.  I advise testing when you use a new product, to avoid unexpected messes.  Sounds like Doug's done something similar before.

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I will let you know. The biggest reason I did house paint was because I needed a lot of it mixed up, it's durable as it's made for standing outside weather, and I got a lot of it for a good price. Also, I was technically painting a building ;)

 

I will try light coats of matte spray and see how it turns out.

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Quick update before bed! I tried drybrushing the flooring on the model to make it look more aged (I was going for, had been washed so many times it has started graying) I am actually very pleased with the results and recommendations!

 

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I might add a little more brown to it to lessen the grey effect or spread out the grey a little more in the corners so it looks a little less contrived, but pretty happy with results. Again, inside won't be viewed TOO much!

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One thing you might consider — matte vs gloss also provides a different look. Just going between them will change how old the thing underneath looks. If you gloss the wood floor, it will look polished (and combined with your paint, that can say either that the floor is constantly worn or that it's brand new). If you use a matte coat, it will look older, like its been scuffed up slightly. For many materials, gloss will look slightly off; e.g. stonework almost never looks right with gloss (though marble does). Matte is a bit more forgiving, because most people force the light to reflect "right" for the model in their painting. Metallic metals often stop working as well with matte though, and anything that's supposed to be slimy or wet tends to be less convincing.

 

My 2¢, anyway.

 

Also, that mansion looks nice. The floors are especially impressive.

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More boring touch up on the mansion. I can't do a matte spray because the weather is super humid currently and it's supposed to just turn into an all out winter storm here in the Seattle area. 

 

I finally managed to damage the mansion model. It has been extremely sturdy, and I was wondering how destructible it was. I went to visit my parents yesterday and show it off and they oo'd and awe'd, but when I brought it back home I had managed to ding the roof somewhere along the way and took a chunk of roof tile the side. It's completely coverable, and I know where the delicate spots finally are. 

 

One of the reasons I chose house paint is that I knew the model would be coming apart/being put back together and the paints I selected from Lowes and Sherwin Williams have a pretty decent scuff protection. They are doing great so far, and I've assembled and disassembled dozens of times. 

 

The biggest lesson I've learned from this model (and the Windmill) is that you absolutely should prime Tabletop World models black. There is so much freakin detail on these things, and if you miss a nook or cranny it's immediately obvious with white primer shower. In addition, the black will go into the crevices and looks naturally better. 

 

So learn from my mistake if you take the plunge and get one of the models yourself!! I also had to use more layers of paint to get to black which is always bad.

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