Monday, May 16, 2011

Preparing the Diorama (4)

The last time I wrote about the Guilford Courthouse diorama, I had finished making the ridges and ravines on the western half of the battlefield (these were constructed from pieces of foam board covered with Woodland Scenics' ReadyGrass Vinyl Mat).

Since then, I've made the streams and road in this area, and I've started on the fields.

To make the streams I used a nail to scrape away the grass, painted the cleared area with a brownish-blue acrylic mix, and finally dabbed the painted area with a glossy varnish.

For the road, I used a nail to mark the edges of the road, then dabbed the path with a wet cotton swab, then scrapped the grass away with a flathead screwdriver (it came off with remarkable ease), and then painted the cleared area with a brown acrylic.

Creating the New Garden Road. In the foreground is the raw surface of the vinyl mat after the grass has been scrapped away.

The grass on the mats comes off almost too easily. One can see in the above picture how it has flaked off along the edges of the foam board pieces. I ended up dabbing all the edges with brown acrylic to cover up the problem and hopefully prevent its spread.

Finally, for the fields I've begun cutting out pieces of corduroy and placing them on the American first line. At this point, I placed some minis on the model battlefield. Below part of the North Carolina militia and an American 6-pounder square off against the 71st Regiment of Foot. They won't stay there very long. The fields need yet to be glued down, ringed by fences, and surrounded by model woodland.