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Wood Elf Champion: Planting & Painting

Wood Elf Champion
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29 December 2006page first published

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R Strickland Fezian of Null Horizon writes:

Joining the Trees to the Base

This was the tricky part. I wanted the trees to convincingly blend into the base, but the one slightly unrealistic aspect of the sagebrush trees is that the trunks don't flair out at the base like most trees.

The trees are glued in place

I glued the trees into the hillside with Liquid Nails. When that was dry, I sculpted the base of the trunk with DAS air-bake clay.

The join at the base of the trunk, made of Das, painted to match


I used craft paint to paint the base. (Below, Folk Art brand is abbreviated FA and Delta Ceramcoat, DC.)

First, I painted the base of the trunks to blend in with the sagebrush wood with craft paints. I used the following colors:

  • DC Territorial Beige
  • DC Mudstone
  • DC Hippo Grey
  • DC Quaker Grey
  • FA Yellow Ochre
  • FA Wicker White

Next, I painted the hillside. The undercoat is DC Dark Burnt Umber.

Basecoat of CD Dark Burnt Umber

The rocks have a basecoat of FA Burnt Sienna, which may seem unusual since the rocks will eventually have a greenish tint - but looks really realistic, in my opinion. I believe I burrowed this idea from paintings I've seen, but I'm not sure.

The hill is highlighted, the rocks given a basecoat of FA Burnt Sienna

The dirt areas were built up with drybrushed highlights mixed from FA Burnt Umber to DC Territorial Beige to DC Mudstone. The rocks were given coats of DC Hippo Grey to DC Quaker Grey to FA Wicker White, and all of these had tiny amounts of FA Yellow Ochre mixed in. The Yellow Ochre added to grey yields a greenish hue.

Hillside gets final highlights, rocks get coats of grey up to white

Then I painted the empty spots for the figures and the blank sides of the hill black.

(I should also mention that I did these same steps on the bases of the figures themselves.)