Author Topic: Some ground cover experiments  (Read 2838 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

John

  • Administrator
  • Crew
  • *****
  • Posts: 10791
  • Gender: Male
  • Respect: +479
Some ground cover experiments
« on: March 10, 2007, 08:10:43 AM »
0
I continue to play around with ground cover .. and my current test recipe is a combination of saw dust and woodland scenics

I make the saw dust by the bucketful .. I use a 1 gallon bucket, fill it 1/2 way with saw dust, from Home Depot or your own shop .. fill 3/4 way full with warm water, then add 1/2 bottle of black acrylic craft paint. Let it set for a day or two, so that the wood fiber can absorb the coloring.

Dry the saw dust until it is completely dry.

To apply, spread a thin coat of white glue over the area, then sprinkle a good covering of the saw dust. Wet it with a spray bottle, then apply various blends of Woodland Scenics. I am using weeds, earth, green blend, and a few other greenish and dirt colors.

Here is the initial application ..



A pull back view, with some rolling stock for a little flavor.



Some additional scenery materials added ..








tom mann

  • Administrator
  • Crew
  • *****
  • Posts: 10658
  • Representing The Railwire on The Railwire
  • Respect: +705
    • http://www.chicagoswitching.com
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2007, 08:18:27 AM »
0
Yeah, that looks pretty nice.  But maybe I should see it in person... ;D

Ed Kapuscinski

  • Global Moderator
  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 17875
  • Has a degree in American History & Culture.
  • Respect: +2126
    • Conrail 1285
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2007, 09:39:53 AM »
0
It looks ok, but here's one thing to keep in mind, the world (in the area you're modelling) is not covered in grass. It's actually, by default, wooded, so brown + scrub brush + trees would be a better effect, with only small areas of low grass.

Give it a thought, and take a look at your photos, what color do you usually see in them (on the ground, under the trees)?

wm3798

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 13111
  • Gender: Male
  • I like models. She likes antiques. Perfect!
  • Respect: +1337
    • Western Maryland Railway Western Lines
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2007, 10:17:42 PM »
0
Fess up... you put up a back drop, didn't you? ;D

I like the blend.  I agree with Ed up to a point...  In addition to dead leaves, copperheads and possums, there is a lot of greenery that comes up in a forested area.  I submit the following for your consideration:


Shot at the Allegheny Portage Railroad NHS in July of '06.  I don't see many browns here.  Maybe it depends on how you view the world.  Is it half dead, or half alive? 8)

When you described how you color the sawdust, I envisioned you mixing it into kind of a paste that you trowel on like mud.  It makes a good base color, but you could maybe still give it a saturation of black or dark brown paint mixed with your glue water to tone it down a bit further.

Generally speaking, it looks good, but as Tom says, it merits closer inspection by a team of experts...

Lee
Route of the Alpha Jets

Lee Weldon www.wmrywesternlines.net

Ian MacMillan

  • Global Moderator
  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 11920
  • Gender: Male
  • Learn to use the god damn search feature!
  • Respect: +51
    • Conrail's Portland Line
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2007, 05:36:25 PM »
0
Pretty much depends on where you are.

Here the forest floor is dead leaves with a few low trees and fern here and there as the canopy is thick and blocks light. Around the edge is where it gets some greenery for us, and then in spots where light can hit the ground and if its moist you get major fern growth.
I WANNA SEE THE BOAT MOVIE!

John

  • Administrator
  • Crew
  • *****
  • Posts: 10791
  • Gender: Male
  • Respect: +479
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2007, 05:44:28 PM »
0
Rule 1 applies :)

Ian MacMillan

  • Global Moderator
  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 11920
  • Gender: Male
  • Learn to use the god damn search feature!
  • Respect: +51
    • Conrail's Portland Line
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #6 on: March 11, 2007, 06:27:39 PM »
0
Rule 1 applies :)


I don't see how NORAC Rule 1 "General Orders, Bulletin Orders, Division Notices" applies to this :P
I WANNA SEE THE BOAT MOVIE!

John

  • Administrator
  • Crew
  • *****
  • Posts: 10791
  • Gender: Male
  • Respect: +479
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2007, 07:06:28 PM »
0
The M&O Addendum however does apply.

Rule 1 - It's my railroad. I will run it as I please. :)


kiwi_al

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 876
  • Gender: Male
  • Respect: 0
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2007, 09:51:34 PM »
0
John,
I like the effect of that, I must try it out. Used to do that years ago before WS grass!!!

 ;D
[

Mark5

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 9112
  • Always with the negative waves Moriarty ...
  • Respect: +182
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #9 on: March 12, 2007, 05:10:39 PM »
0
looks good from my armchair!

John

  • Administrator
  • Crew
  • *****
  • Posts: 10791
  • Gender: Male
  • Respect: +479
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #10 on: March 12, 2007, 05:12:59 PM »
0
Thanks .. even the comments from Ed :)

I have a lot of square footage to cover .. so any way to save money is what I am after ..


Ed Kapuscinski

  • Global Moderator
  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 17875
  • Has a degree in American History & Culture.
  • Respect: +2126
    • Conrail 1285
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #11 on: March 12, 2007, 05:56:10 PM »
0
Good point Lee, but still, the only reason you don't see the brown is all the leafy matter above it. It's not quite a green field.

I propose that John, instead of covering it with grass, uses trees and bushes (maybe a strip of grass)!

From his very own photo:



I think this plays into something that we modelers often fall into a trap of.

I know personally, in many cases, I have a presupposition about how a model scene is supposed to look, but then I'll look at a photo (or real life) and I'll see that while I may have many of the key concepts right, the (not really details, more like, reality of it) is somewhat different. I know before I came to this realization, I was building model scenes patterned after model scenes. Now, I'd like to think I'm working more from reality (applying the proto modeler premise to scenery). It's far from perfect, but I feel like I'm getting closer, and constructing scenes that look less "model railroady" and more "modely".

I think this is the single biggest learning point I've had with my layout, and I think it's a lesson worth learning for everyone.

So John, instead of trying to find a way to duplicate what Woodland Scenics makes (which is FAR from perfect), I'd suggest looking at the photo above, and duplicating the textures and colors you see in IT.

Which reminds me, time to go look up some more photos of butler buildings...

John

  • Administrator
  • Crew
  • *****
  • Posts: 10791
  • Gender: Male
  • Respect: +479
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #12 on: March 12, 2007, 06:16:43 PM »
0
Ed  .. the title says it all .. "ground cover experiments" ... when I put the trees in, we will be adding that additional layer of old decayed stuff .. this section you see is not going to be the big grassy plain that you see now ..

wm3798

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 13111
  • Gender: Male
  • I like models. She likes antiques. Perfect!
  • Respect: +1337
    • Western Maryland Railway Western Lines
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2007, 07:47:15 AM »
0
Yes, but Edzo, you still run into the conundrum of model railroad practicality vs. realistic scene building.  If John were to build the scene in the above photo 100% true to life, a whole lot of fragile tree models would be planted close to the aisle, where they would be competing for space with various "full figured" operators following their trains...  They would also, if planted in the density and height seen in the image, effectively block the view of the train unless you are hovering overhead.

The key is to find the reasonable compromises.  Locate the parts of the layout where it's practical to bring the forest right to the edge of the right of way, and still create spaces for good eye-level photo spots, and address those basic maintenance issues we all face with our layouts.

Lee
Route of the Alpha Jets

Lee Weldon www.wmrywesternlines.net

John

  • Administrator
  • Crew
  • *****
  • Posts: 10791
  • Gender: Male
  • Respect: +479
Re: Some ground cover experiments
« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2007, 07:56:03 AM »
0
Yes, but Edzo, you still run into the conundrum of model railroad practicality vs. realistic scene building.

That is a problem ..  especially on the upper deck, or even a single deck layout with an eyelevel height .. I think you can have the train pop in and out of a scene like that, but realistically, the trees need to be in the background, and a lower level of ground cover in the front ..