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Someone I play 40K with pretty frequently has a birthday coming up and after seeing how much he liked the barrels and watchtower I made awhile back I knew I had to make something just for him. Actually between him and his roommate they own most of the pieces I've made over the last two years; all these have been pretty crude and nothing more than proof of concept pieces though. This being his birthday present however I'd like to make something a little more polished.

 

Thanks to Commissar Gamza's trash tutorials I knew exactly what to make, a Tau bunker. Also thanks to his video I knew exactly how to build it so I wouldn't have to design it or figure out the build (this of course is where I usually get stuck on a build and decide to just wing it, which usually results in a "tolerable" piece which is basically as I said, just a proof of concept). For this build however I had exact step by step instructions which I followed to create this...

20190226_223332.thumb.jpg.e58bcc557900a37b3203ee730d9f479b.jpg20190226_223356.thumb.jpg.baca6cd4bb887c825fb474b326542f05.jpg20190226_223408.thumb.jpg.6efb713d695b442f4e0c5fe7d6b017e7.jpg

 

Unfortunately this became nothing more than a proof of concept piece during the painting. I used Apple Barrel craft paint for the base and I think that turned out great but the bunker itself just looks bad. Try as I might I just cannot seem to figure out how to thin and paint with this stuff.

 

I know I could simply present this to him in its current state and he'd be ecstatic, but I'd really like to give him something nicer. I've got a couple more days to finish this and welcome any advice or suggestions to improve the bunker itself. I know a lot of people use the craft store paint for their terrain projects, what exactly is the trick I'm missing?

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3 hours ago, Rat13 said:

Try as I might I just cannot seem to figure out how to thin and paint with this stuff.

 

Why are you trying to thin it?

 

Mix an off-white or near-white color. 

Paint it that color: 

Tau Buildings Authority gleaming almost white color. 

 

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This might sound a bit weird but what material are you trying to paint there? Is it corrugated cardboard? Was the cardboard white to start with? Like did the surface have some colour on it already? I feel like it might be the surface that is throwing you off here.

 

I'm tempted to tell you that it needs some rendering, but I feel like that might come from having lived with parents that were permanently renovating houses.

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7 hours ago, Rat13 said:

I know I could simply present this to him in its current state and he'd be ecstatic, but I'd really like to give him something nicer. I've got a couple more days to finish this and welcome any advice or suggestions to improve the bunker itself. I know a lot of people use the craft store paint for their terrain projects, what exactly is the trick I'm missing?

 

A second coat I would say. Also add visual interest to the bunker. Take a look at the door in the second picture, the eye is instantly drawn to the shape over the door.

So I would suggest to create some more features for visual interest. Cut out shapes from cardboard and glue it to the bunker. Metal bands with rivets: use a hole puncher and punch some rivets, create a strip of cardboard running from one side over  or up, add rivets on top of that. Do you know which sept your friend plays, print it's symbol on thicker paper, cut it out glue it to the bunker.

Paint the stuff and dryrbush. Since you glued stuff to the bunker there are now lots of edges where a drybrush will work and that creates a lot of visual interst (look at the ground for example).

Freehand a number over the door, or other markings (maybe look for a stencil font online and print/cut/stencil on if you are not so willing to freehand).

Want more visual interest? There are now edges that can erode be weathered. Stipple on dilluted brown paint at the bottom for dirt splatter. Some dark then light orange colored stipple  for the metal bands to create weathering. Use a sponge to erode the numbers/markings with the background color where it would have scrapped off.

 

Want more? Add more stuff and repeat the above. Stop when you run out of time or interest.

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8 hours ago, Rat13 said:

Thanks to Commissar Gamza's trash tutorials I knew exactly what to make, a Tau bunker. Also thanks to his video I knew exactly how to build it so I wouldn't have to design it or figure out the build

 

I found the video and scrubbed through it. 

 

Right. This is a Pringles® Can. With two slots cut into it for Tau (40K space aliens for those reading along) soldiers to shoot through. It wants to look like Tau constructed equipment but it doesn’t, yet. 

 

You need Tan paint. And white. The Tau paint everything those colors. 

 

What to do:

—work on the ends a bit more. 

—add some strips of card stock to make each end tidier, smoother, but a little more bulked up. (Like Moebius said, but...)

do not add rivets! the Tau do not do rivets (everything Tau looks like smooth, poured, high tech space-concrete).

—Add the Tau Cattle-Brand, the “Circle Bar O” a couple of places. 

—then repaint with a nice smooth basecoat.  

 

Color scheme possibilities: all tan, all white, White with a Tan stripe, Tan with a White stripe, white but the end bulkheads are Tan, etc. 

 

Apple Barrel craft Paint is meant to be used as is from a new bottle. Think of it as Exterior Latex House Paint for miniature (doll) houses. (That’s pretty much what it is.) That is why it is perfect for terrain. 

 

The Tau “Cattle Brand”:

TauSymbol.jpg

I dunno maybe it’s a “Circle O I”. 

 

TAU Buildings Image Search

 

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First off I want to thank everyone for their advice and ideas. Though I tried quite a few things I made the rookie mistake of not photographing anything but the end result. So I'll attempt to explain the things I did trying to save the piece today.

 

The first thing I tried was to go back to the original white color of the bunker, which I had already abandoned by the time I came to the forum for help. After three coats applied throughout the day it still looked bad, and I mean bad. Honestly I believe that may be more my fault than the paint or even the material I'm painting (which is in fact a Pringle can with two pieces of corrugated cardboard on the ends). I seem to have trouble painting white, which is certainly something to work on as this is the second time I've encountered the issue.

 

Even with the terrible white paint job though I pushed on. I added the detail glyphs to the front and rear of the building, which was nothing more than a black freehand of the Tau "Cattle Brand" as TGP called it. Then I added some black spots to the front to represent lasgun scorching from incoming fire; the roof even got some big scorches courtesy of a sponge to indicate hits from mortar rounds. Again I really wish I had a photo because this looked terrible; the bunker ended up looking like a very sickly dalmatian. 

 

This is where I gave up on white, at least for this project. I thinned out some black paint for a smoother application and coated the whole piece. It really only took one coat and some touche ups to get my finished coverage. I used some red to apply the "Cattle Brand" to the front and some Tau writing to the top of the doorframe. It'll be fun to see if my friend ever translates the writing because it reads "guard 13" and as my Guard army frequently fights his Tau I think it's a nice little joke between friends. 20190227_225927.thumb.jpg.e608bcf5c5fcde17603c0c0aaead04a9.jpg20190227_225941.thumb.jpg.d4f27be043760942b601f9967896741a.jpg

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If you do undercoat something dark and want it to end up white try an intermediate colour like a brown or khaki before doing the white. It may not be perfect but it can help cover the black. I tend to rarely use black as a primer because I don't like fighting with it to get my lighter colours.  Easier to paint black over white than vice versa.

 

I also just saw over at Luke's APS (watching a lot of his videos lately) that he thins craft paints with matte medium. When I'm using them I usually don't thin them other than for washes so no personal advice on it.

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1 hour ago, Inarah said:

It looks much better. The glyphs are a nice touch.

Thanks, now that it's finished I'm tempted to go back and add a large Tau 13 to the top for aerial distinction.

 

19 minutes ago, Zink said:

Easier to paint black over white than vice versa.

Something I've learned time and time again. With this project I actually applied a white primer coat but the white coatings after the primer came out just as bad as when I went over the dark coat. Honestly I think I just have an issue with white but I believe now its also necessary to thin craft paints to get a more even coating.

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21 minutes ago, Rat13 said:

I think I just have an issue with white but I believe now its also necessary to thin craft paints to get a more even coating.

Where did the large texture on the Pringle’s® can come from? I have saved a few of those, but the exterior of the ones I have are smooth cardboard. (Like coated paperstock)

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The bunker turned out nice.

 

44 minutes ago, Rat13 said:

issue with white but I believe now its also necessary to thin craft paints to get a more even coating.

 

You are not the only one, painting bright colors over (especially dark) colored background is always a hassle. But usually white has a decent coverage. It might be that  you have a bad bottle of paint (happens) or that the paint separated really badly, then a lot of the pigment can be stuck at the bottom and won't mix in without something to agitate it. Try to stir with a stir stick and see if it improves.

 

Thinning paints are for two things:

  • flow control, mostly usefull for painting small details and
  • avoiding texture of the paint, that is if the paint is not runny enough then brush strokes stay visible

the drawback is that thinning also reduces the amount of pigment per drop of paint resulting in a weaker coverage, resulting in the necessity of multiple coats. The thing with cheaper paintst is that they have to save money on something and that is usually pigments, so this problem becomes more of a problem the cheaper the paint is.

For paintjobs like yours you want to just go over the second point, but no thinner. There are no details to obscure so that is fine and saves you a lot of work with multiple coats.

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26 minutes ago, TGP said:

Where did the large texture on the Pringle’s® can come from? I have saved a few of those, but the exterior of the ones I have are smooth cardboard. (Like coated paperstock)

I'm not exactly sure what you're asking. If you're asking about the texture on the rounded portion itself that came about simply from how many coats of paint were applied. It simply built up and caused the bunker to look "bubbly" and not smooth.

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Went ahead and added the Tau 13 to the roof. Now I'm willing myself to stop messing with this; it is officially done. All that's left to do is present it to my friend next game day.20190228_075503.thumb.jpg.14919b001cd0176956120447eac2cd40.jpg

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