The Fight for Avras - Lucky Sixes "All-In" Project #10 - Necromancers Graveyard Terrain Tutorial

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  • Hey you guys!!!

    Below you will find a complete tutorial for the terrain piece I have made for the Avras campaign. Once again, I have tried to come in with the aim to keep the costs at an absolute minimum! So this actually cost me £0 outside of paints and 'bits' that I already had in the house and on my hobby table! Bonus!

    As always, I am looking to improve my skills as I have used this campaign as a bit of an excuse to test myself in the different aspects of the hobby. Enjoyed it so much but realise that it is not the best ever - but good enough for me! lol. So, if you do have any comments or tips about how i could've made this better and what to think about in my future endeavors when doing this sort of stuff. I have done a little 'reflection' bit at the end also, so let me know if you agree with those points too.

    Terrain Piece: Ruins - Necromancers Graveyard.

    Initial Ideas: This goes back to a previous challenge of making terrain rules for the campaign based on the army you chose. I am Vampire Covenant for this, so thought something that would go nicely with the army would be a graveyard that may have been utilised previously by - you guessed it - a necromancer! Here is the rule-set and idea for reference:
    Display Spoiler

    Ingredients: So what do you need to complete this task? Well just check out the pictures below for what you will need to muster together before you start. Add to this a pie tin plate, paint and some basing materials (from your hobby table) and you have all you need to get going...





    Step 1: Cut the base out of cardboard. Cut strips of cardboard out for the walls - making sure to account for the 3 sides of the wall and some extra bit to allow you to stick it down to the base. Square the lollipop sticks off at their ends and cut some extra ones to the same length (and then in half to halve their width)



    Step 2: Score the cardboard strips to create the wall shape and stick them to the base using celotape to create the wall outline. Squish a pie plate dish into a rough dome shape (making sure it has lots of rough edges all around) and cut a doorway in one side. Stick down to base with super glue. You may need weights to do this effectively (see 3rd picture)...







    Step 3: Once dried, paper mache the entire area by mixing PVA glue with water to make a 'paste'; cut newspaper into strips and dip them in the paste; place them on the structure and walls; brush over to 'flatten' onto the cardboard. Leave to dry overnight in a warm, dry area.



    Step 4: Using the cut up lollipop sticks, start to create the metal fencing to go on top of the wall by cutting cocktail sticks up as below. I cut them up into 3, using the central section for the bars on the bottom of the structure and the 2 outer sections for the top bars. Just make sure to keep the central section fairly even in length; but the same care does not need to be taken for the outer edges - in fact i cut them to different lengths on purpose. Also, don't be careful to make sure they are all perfectly stuck down as if they are broken, missing or off-centre as it makes it look more dingy/old/'necromancery'. Stick these together using super glue or a more resilient substance than PVA.



    Step 5: Stick the fencing to the top of the walls (after everything has time to sufficiently dry) using PVA and allow another day of drying. Then paint the base colours and add some texture to the base. I have added a skull to the pie-plate cave and some boulders to the front for extra effect.



    Step 6: Finish by adding layer colours and wash to the structures and extra flock/texture to the bases. Add any extras to bring home the theme. I added some gravestones to the flocky areas of the gravel inside the fences for example. For the stone effect, simply drybrush using white on top of a grey/stone colour. Easy pea-sy!


    And there you have it! A ready made, cheap ruins/graveyard structure that any vampire army can utilise to good affect!

    Recommendations/improvements (basically if i had more time lol)
    • Add skulls! I actually have a shed load of skulls to add to this, as well as other extras like a cauldron of blood and skeleton parts that i have spare from my VC kits. I may still do this to be fair as I think its the little details that really make things like this. Adding skulls to the floor and railings would make for a better effect.
    • Blood stained and more attention to the gravel/basing texture! I am not very good at basing anyway so this is something i would like to improve on and get some tips from you guys, but I think simply taking more time with this and adding some paint to parts would make it look better.
    • Wall should have been stone affect too! Yeah I feel like this was a missed opportunity as the cave looks much more like stone than the wall does. So if i was to do it again, I would paint that in the same manner as the cave
    • For better effect, use better materials! Obviously for this challenge, I had set my sights on using household products rather than going for the best look and I am pretty pleased with the outcome considering, but i do think there are some things that paper mache just cant do, so you may be better placed to buy the awesomely detailed kits you can already get for terrain. But I certainly don't think this would look massively out of place and is definitely not a terrible substitute for it so its personal preference on this one to be honest!
    I'm sure there are other things but that will do for now. I hope you enjoyed my noob tutorial. I had lots of fun creating this, and actually think it turned out slightly better in real life than the photo so overall i'm happy with the outcome. Lots to improve on, obviously, but i gave it a go so i'm happy enough with that! Cheers guys!
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