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American Wars Buildings
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1. Wooden Buildings

Clapboard and Upright Planked buildings, Log Shacks and Wooden Shingles (slates) can all be painted using the same techniques. Practically any selection of earth colours (siennas, umbers and ochres, burnt or raw) can be used to create wood effects. Mixing colours produces different weathering effects and ranges of colours that a natural material such as wood is capable of producing. Layering different techniques, from sponging, stippling, washing and drybrushing adds depth to even the simplest of models.

There are two basic methods, one uses acrylic or enamel, the other uses oil paints with details added using acrylic or enamel.

Method 1:

  • Undercoat the model with matt black acrylic or enamel and allow to dry thoroughly.
  • Drybrush the desired area with burnt sienna.
  • When dry, drybrush again with a mixture of burnt sienna and raw sienna.
  • Allow to dry, then drybrush again with raw sienna.
  • Finally, apply a light drybrush dusting with white.
  • If the final result seems a little too scruffy, a wash of brown ink, yellow ink and water in the ration 3:1:3 will neaten up the model.

Method 2:

  • Undercoat the model with white primer.
  • For clean, new wood, paint on a thinned layer of raw sienna oil paint, then while still wet wipe off most of the paint with a clean, dry sponge, then allow to dry.
  • Additional applications of paint, wiped with sponge deepen the colour.
  • Further depth may be achieved by drybrushing with a mixture of white and raw sienna (using oil, enamel or acrylic as desired).
  • For older, dirtier wood, paint onto the white-primed model with an undercoat of raw sienna (do not sponge off).
  • When dry, paint on a thinned layer of Paynes Grey, burnt umber, burnt sienna or raw umber.
  • When dry, more depth can be achieved by dry-brushing with raw sienna, then raw sienna and white and finally white.

Planking and clapboard was often painted, with green, red and white being popular colours.

  • For green clapboard, undercoat the model black, then drybrush the required area with dark green, then repeat the process with gradually lighter colours (adding white and yellow to the green) until the required effect is obtained.
  • To weather the woodwork, make up a thin wash of Paynes Grey and white. When the wash has dried, finish off with a lighter, dry-brush mixture of Paynes Grey and white, until a suitably sun-bleached effect is achieved.

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2. Canvas and Sheriff's Office

  • Undercoat the model with white primer.
  • When dry, coat the surface with a layer of thinned raw sienna and, while still wet, wipe off with a clean, dry sponge. Allow to dry and repeat until the desired effect is achieved.
  • Further depth may be added by drybrushing the model with a mixture of white and raw sienna, then drybrushing again with white.

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3. Brick, Tile and Stone

  • For red brick or tiling, undercoat the model black.
  • When dry, drybrush with burnt sienna, terracotta then persimmon. If desired, a final drybrushing of raw sienna may be appied. A little white can be added to this to give a sun-bleached look.
  • Any scruffy drybrushing may be neatened with a wash of Winsor and Newton burnt sienna or deep red ink.
  • For grey slate roofs, undercoat with black. then, when dry, drybrush with dark grey.
  • Repeat several times adding small amounts of light blue and white to the mixture.
  • For grey stone, undercoat with white. When dry, cover the model with a thinned coat of Paynes Grey, then wipe off with sponge.
  • Repeat to deepen the colour.
  • Dry brush with white and yellow ochre to accentuate the wind-blown weathered effect.

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4. Thatch

  • Undercoat with white. When dry, add a base coat of raw sienna and leave to dry.
  • Paint on a light coat of a 1:1 mixture of raw and burnt sienna and leave to dry.
  • Dry brush the thatch with a mixture of raw sienna and white, then white.

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