Monday 26 November 2012

Games Mat - update

 I've finished the first few stages on my games mat.  I've also produced a small test square (20x20cm or 8x8 inches) to experiment with a few techniques.  One of the first things I've done is try setting objects into the sealant so see what sort of texture they leave when I remove them after the sealant has dried.

Back of a tie pin / pin badge - should look like a man-hole cover!
I textured the rest of the surface with a sponge and dragged my large aluminium ruler across one side to produce a roadway.

Plastic cross-stitch mesh.
 After 24 hours I carefully removed the items.  The mesh left a nice texture behind.  The pin back pulled the sealant off with it, so I'll class that one as a failure!  I tried again but it pulled the sealant off again, I think it has too much texture in comparison to the base fabric.  The mesh is good because it's quite a chunky, very smooth polythene plastic so the sealant doesn't stick to it.

The dried test piece (the crinkling flattens out without any real difficulty).
I painted using Wilkinson's tester pots.  Java Bean is a good dark brown base colour, Nutmeg Spice a lighter colour that gives a mottled appearance when sponged on while the  base is still wet.  Flintstone for the concrete hard standing.  The road is black acrylic which dried to an odd, slightly shiny texture which attracts dust, fluff and stray hairs exceedingly well!

Base coat.
One dried I gave a drybrush of coffee brown and urban jungle green.  The river was painted using inscribe acrylics.  It didn't come out quite right, but this was a test anyway so I'm not too worried.

Almost finished...
 I'm quite pleased how some of the experiment have turned out.  The road works well, though the ruler is only wide enough for a single vehicle width.  I'll need a thicker plasticard template to use if I make a large games mat featuring roads.  I already knew the tyre tracks worked.  The mesh surface gives a slightly off texture but I quite like it, rather like widely spaced concrete sets.  It will certainly do to add interest if I make an urban games mat.

The entrance to an IMEC mining site.
 Ensuring an even thickness of sealant is clearly important when using the mesh!  Only a very thin layer is required - too thick and it comes up through the holes.

Hard standing

Tyre tracks through the mud.

Tarmac road and man-hole.

The standard sponged texture.
 I've completed the texturing on the entire 6 x 4 foot mat and have also given it a coat of Java Bean so my next task it to start highlighting and mottling the surface with other colours.


  1. This is really clever Paul, looking fantastic!

  2. Thanks for the update, Paul. This looks really good. The sponge effect is particularly intriguing to me. I'm a little tired of sand flocking everything.

    1. I'm hoping that it will be more forgiving to dropped figures than sand - less chance of paint chipping!