I'm now at the point with the Wizard's Eyrie where I can't do anything further until my Richard Stacey brick slips and thatched roof materials arrive. Today, I finished the landscaping--what there is of it. My biggest challenge, when creating this, was figuring out how to give it a realistic-looking stone base. The eyrie itself is made out of slabs of styrofoam, which are attached together with foam glue and dowels. A couple of dowels run right through both sides, from top to base. This adds a kind of stability that simply gluing everything together can't.
I got the "stone" effect by first painting the entire eyrie with several coats of "stone" paint. I actually used a brand that's now gone off the market; I got a huge discount on all the tiny little bottles I used--and, believe me, this was sort of a wasteful project. When I started it, I had no idea how much paint I'd end up using. First, just coating a material like styrofoam isn't that easy. Second, this structure, with all its crags and plains, has a lot more surface area than you'd think. Third, getting rid of the "styrofoam" effect took a lot of work. I wanted the "stone" effect of the paint, not the texture of the underlying armature, shine through.
Then, I spray (very lightly) painted the "rock" with a different kind of "stone" paint. By using basically an airbrush technique, I was able to achieve light flumes of color across the surface of the rock--just like in a real rock formation. I grew up on the beach, and I've always been obsessed with rocks of all kinds.
The next step is landscaping...
I added colored sand to simulate "dirt", and architectural landscaping "foliage" material to simulate small clumps of greenery. Since this is supposed to be a windswept tumble of rocks, there wouldn't be too much in the way of growing things. I just added a few details here and there.
Once I've finished facing the hut with bricks, I'll add more clumps of greenery around the rest of the base.
A close-up of the greenery.
In real life, this would probably be a combination of scrub grass and moss.
Most of the greenery is concentrated around the cleft in the rock, which--eventually--will have a little trickle of water dripping down.
The (forthcoming) natural spring provides just enough moisture and humidity to support some small growth.
A close-up of the stream bed.
Another close-up of the stream bed.
The base from the back.
A close-up of the cleft.
When planning a miniature scene, the interaction between "inside" and "outside" is always a challenge.
I took a few pictures with the flash on, so you can see the detail on the rock face.
A close-up of the rock itself.
The almost-done facade!
I'm really excited to finish this.
Here's to hoping the rest of my materials arrive soon!