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Painting a backscene - Backscenes - Getting You Started. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Sat Mar 21st, 2009 06:23 pm
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Wayne Williams
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OH MY! I just found this thread Mike. You are truly a master at what you do. I cannot tell if the layout was made to fit the backscene, or the backscene was made to fit the layout. In fact, in several pictures, I could not tell where one started and the other ended. You are an artist in the purest sense of the word.

As I read certain postings, I said, I could do that, but then all of a sudden things just took a gigantic leap, that left me wondering how you did that! I'm not sure if I could tell you exactly where that even occurred. It's like I blinked and you suddenly had a backscene and not a bunch of paint.

I am humbled to no end!

Wayne



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 Posted: Sat Mar 21st, 2009 07:23 pm
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phill
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Mike i hope you did not mind but the post or pic in your 89th post i placed on my desktop for a experiment. My son came down and i said what do you think og this picture, not telling him it was a layout or anything.

His reply was "what railway is that running on :hmm"

I then explained it was a backscene on a layout, astounded he would not belive me, asked 4 of his mates to look, whom said the same thing. I had to go to your thread to show them. Now thats how good it is, i mean i often remark how life like they are and i had just had to prove to myself that it was.

Well done mate and i hope to one day be as good as you but i doubt it.

Phill

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 Posted: Sat Mar 21st, 2009 10:20 pm
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MikeC
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 Again, thankyou to everyone for the positive comments   :oops: :oops:


 Mike


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 Posted: Tue Mar 24th, 2009 03:40 am
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Marty
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Mike's demonstrations here encouraged me to try painting part of the backscene for my Pentrecourt Halt diorama.

There are some photos in that topic.... I have a very, very long way to go to get anywhere near Mike's standard, if only!!

...but I intend giving it another go, one day, when I get back into the layout room for a modelling session.

I think that I'll practice on a suitable bit of unwanted board first... and second... and probably third too. It's not as easy as it looks boys and girls. :oops::oops: :cool:

 



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Marty
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 Posted: Wed May 5th, 2010 01:56 am
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MikeC
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 Just finished a moveable backscene  - about 24x14 ins - for my dad's 92nd birthday today May 5.
 He runs British and American outline so I tried to make it compatible with both.

 Same rules as before - no buildings on the angle, and no discernible light direction.
 Clouds' edges were softened with my fingers, as were many of the edges throughout.

 Painted with acrylics on 3mm MDF.

 




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 Posted: Wed May 5th, 2010 02:28 am
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Marty
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MikeC wrote:
 Clouds' edges were softened with my fingers, as were many of the edges throughout.



Fingers!.... I must learn to use my fingers!... I've used them for painting sometime in the past I'm sure. :mutley

Inspirational as always Mike and a useful "bump" for this topic too.

If you haven't seen this one before guys and gals, it's worth your time.

cheers



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Marty
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 Posted: Wed May 5th, 2010 10:23 am
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Petermac
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Many Happy Returns to your Dad Mike - hope you all have a great party. :cheers:cheers:cheers:cheers

I'm not that far off 92 and need a backscene.........................................:roll::roll::roll::roll::roll:



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 Posted: Wed May 5th, 2010 05:16 pm
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henryparrot
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A great personal birthday present for your Dad Mike

Brian

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 Posted: Wed May 5th, 2010 07:29 pm
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owen69
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I am moving to OZ,92 yr old modellers,and sons who paint great backscenes
(now all i need is a plug for that blo*dy volcano )!!

:mutley:mutley:lol::cool:

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 Posted: Thu May 6th, 2010 04:25 am
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Gwiwer
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Models are cheaper here as well, Owen, when you import them from the Old Country. No VAT :cool:

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 Posted: Thu Oct 14th, 2010 09:27 pm
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Cobber 55
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Thank you so very much MikeC for this tutorial. Just what I have been looking for. I'm prepared to it it a go. There are a number of pages of replies so before I go asking any questions I'll read through them.

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 Posted: Thu Oct 14th, 2010 09:30 pm
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Cobber 55
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Gwiwer wrote: Models are cheaper here as well, Owen, when you import them from the Old Country. No VAT :cool:That's what I have found too. The saving in VAT seems to well cover the postage costs. Also there is not the 100% plus local mark up that I have seen in shops here.

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 Posted: Thu Oct 14th, 2010 10:43 pm
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MikeC
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Thanks Barry, and welcome to the forum.
 Fire away with any questions, any time. I can't guarantee I'll be able to answer them though  ;-)

Mike

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 Posted: Thu Oct 14th, 2010 11:06 pm
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Gwiwer
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With regard to the "mark-up" you refer to in Australian shops for imported goods there is no doubt an element of profit-taking here but the import duties the retailers have to pass on are quite significant as well.

If you only import small quantities for private use those do not apply making it realistic to purchase UK items from UK suppliers most of the time.

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 Posted: Fri Oct 15th, 2010 02:45 am
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Cobber 55
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Hi Rick
I agree with you and I certainly have no problem with local shops making a fair profit. As I have been to some of the UK shops, such as Rails of Sheffield, I'm comfortable purchasing from them.

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 Posted: Sat Oct 16th, 2010 12:20 am
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Cobber 55
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Hi Mike

Your work is inspirational. What a talent you have and what an education this is. I have been reading this thread and do have a couple of questions which I don't think have been asked. Probably because they will come under the dumb question umbrella under which I seek protection. ;-)

I get the impression that it’s worth using better quality paints. Do you have some brands that you could recommend? I know that is always an awkward question. Whi I ask is because when spray painting with acrylics I find the brand of paint used makes a real difference so I’m assuming the same applies for this. I also get used to a certain brand and how they go with thinning and so on.

On another tangent, as I have been using a few student quality Winton oil based paints of late, just for rockwork and scenery, I’m wondering if the same or similar colours and techniques could be followed with oils? Substituting the water with the oil paint equivalent of course. Why I ask this one is because the oils give me plenty of time to work and seem a bit forgiving. Bear in mind I am not talking of any experience with oils on canvas, just on Plaster of Paris moulds and the like so I may be way off here.

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 Posted: Sat Oct 16th, 2010 01:12 am
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MikeC
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Hi Barry and thankyou for the questions. I enjoy discussing this sort of thing.

To be honest, I'm not that fussy about brands of acrylics [oils are another matter] I am, however, very happy with Jo Sonja's acrylics. I use their Background colours which can be purchased in squeeze bottle form, as well as their tube colours. And they can be bought at major Bunnings stores.

Chromacryl is another brand I use and recommend.

That said, any brand will do the job - Reeves, Matisse, Rowney - you name it. I'm even quite prepared to use el cheapo $2 tubes from the newsagent for backscene and model painting. I figure that they'll easily last as long as the layout. I certainly wouldn't use them for artwork though.

As for using oils for backscenes, I'd advise against it because, unlike acrylics, they hold the bristle/brush marks. While some strong gestural brushmarks in the sky might be desirable in an oil painting, it's not desirable in a backscene sky. You'd be a long time smoothing them all away.

You can extend the working time of acrylics with the spray mist bottle. Even if your paint has already dried, mist spraying the area will soften the arrival of the new paint, and after some gentle smoothing with your fingers it'll be hard to tell where new met old.

 I don't like the Retarder medium that is said to prolong the drying time because in order to get it to work, you have to add so much that it imparts a gloss. And if you add too much it remains sticky. It may have improved in the 10 or so years since I used it, but I get by very well without.

Mike

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 Posted: Sat Oct 16th, 2010 02:02 am
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Cobber 55
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Thank you very much indeed Mike. That's a big help. I'm off to Bunnings! I'll keep the oils for the Plaster of Paris.

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 Posted: Sat Oct 16th, 2010 07:04 am
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Cobber 55
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Hi Mike, I had a go today and was going OK until I got to the clouds and then the hills. Then it started to go really wrong.  :roll: I'll wait for it to dry fully then give it a few coats of gesso and have another go.  My hills were way too big and monocolour. At least I could get the sky lighter as it got closer to the horizon. Its a start. All good fun. I need to get more white.

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 Posted: Sat Oct 16th, 2010 08:20 am
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MikeC
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Glad to hear you're giving it a go, Barry :thumbs It isn't always plain sailing for any of us.
Still - no harm done. Acrylics are marvellous when it comes to covering mistakes, and it's all good experience.

Mike

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