Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Dragon's Teeth

Here at the Sweatshop we are inordinately excited by this finished project. It isn't our first finished piece of scenery, but it was the most complicated attempted. First, we had to catch a dragon. Well, yes. Where else do dragon's teeth come from?

Actually, the previous paragraph contains at least one lie. The longest, most tense part of the procedure came from waiting for the mould to arrive from Hong Kong. I'm not going to claim I was holding my breath, but I was counting days. If you include searching eBay for pyramid shaped silicone moulds, it was also the most complicated part. No, the procedure wasn't even slightly complicated.

I squeezed some black acrylic paint into some watered down, ready mixed filler, and mixed thoroughly. I aimed for the consistency of thick cake batter. This was a total guess on my part, because the article I read at Terragenesis didn't mention consistency. See the spoon in the picture? That spoon is standing upright in the batter mixture.

Then, I slopped spoonfuls of the mixture into the mould. The second longest part was next; leaving the stuff to set, dry out, bake, whatever, for a few days. I left the mould on a sunny window ledge to hasten the baking. Three days later, the teeth popped easily out of the mould. Some filing was required to flatten down the bottoms, but then it was just a matter of gluing them to CDs.

The teeth had a slight crumbly consistency to them, and some did lose chunks as they exited the mould. This suited me, as I wanted a worn look. Broken bits were arranged next to the teeth. I painted a coating of thinned down PVA over the teeth, to prevent further crumbling. This actually added to the weathered effect, as the liquid soaked in and seeped down, looking somewhat like mild rain erosion. I slapped a coating of mid grey acrylic over them, then washes of agrax earthshade and badab black to finish. The whole sanding, painting, flocking of the base was all standard stuff. I think they look dirty and worn, veterans of many battles.

This was my test batch. I used CDs for the bases simply because they were handy and I was feeling lazy. Da Boss wants further batches to be in different configurations, some on CDs, some on rectangular bases. The second batch of teeth are taking longer to bake, but then the weather hasn't been as sunny as last week. Hopefully, they'll be ready tomorrow.