Sunday, February 1, 2009

Dominion Building Update - Sidewalks

This Sundays update is coming to you early for obvious reasons (Go Steelers!).  I also need to apologize that I did not get anywhere as much work done as I wanted to.  It has been a busy week and a very nasty cold has swept through my family, I am just now getting it.

So the few things that I did manage to complete are the billboard on the one end that I posted about a few days ago.  The other is a plate for the building to rest-upon, and make the building look a little more finished.  It will be nice to display it on the plate because it will be a few years until it has a permanent home.  

The plate was cast from plaster in a mold that I built from styrene.  I sprayed a little Pam onto a paper towel and gave the mold a good rubdown.  The Pam acts as a release agent because you cant flex plastic like a rubber mold.  Also don't spray the Pam directly on the mold, rubbing it in with a paper towel is sufficient and gives you an even coat.  If you are careful with the mold you can get a few pours out of it, which comes in handy when you don't mix enough plaster and by the time you get the next batch ready, the first has setup too far to work it (not like that has ever happened to me).  I popped the casting out after just a few hours so I could easily add the expansion joints in the sidewalks by using a dull #11 X-acto blade.

Once the casting was mostly dry, I began staining (not painting) the plaster with washes of my favorite India ink/Alcohol mix, if have been following me you know that I love this stuff.  I stained the sidewalks, curbing and gutters with a fairly light wash (test it first on the bottom or on an area that wont be visible).  Make sure that you scribe in a line separating the street and the gutter, it helps to prevent the darker street wash from bleeding into the lighter.  I was very liberal with my washes to ensure that it was getting into all of the seams.  The street is simply a darker wash, I added a little more ink into the existing mix (a little india ink goes a very long way, so use it sparingly).  

The storm drains were very easy to make but add allot detail.  On the mold I had glued a 3/8" long strip of styrene.  Later I painted some .010x.080" strip a dark grey, cut it to length and glued it in.  The lamp I bought from Miniatronics (72-032-01), and it is very close to the bishops crook style that was used throughout New York.  It was molded in black so I panted it a olive drab to match a few pictures.  I made up the street signs from paper and styrene, they were a little more time consuming to make than I thought but I think they look okay.  The fire call-box I built from styrene again, then painted.  I used figures & benches from Woodland Scenics for the bus stop but I made the sign, I have a few more figures that I will add later as the building gets closer to being done.  The mail box is from Period Miniatures, I think.  Then I added a few things of garbage.

I still need to add a few fire hydrants and couple minor details, I don't want too much so the attention stays on the building.  Unfortunately next week is looking grim for construction time, so we shall see what I can finish up.  Please ask if you have any questions on something that I may have missed or didn't explain very well.  Sometime this week I will post about how I created the patina on the roof, I have been getting many questions on this.

Sorry about the blurry pictures, I need to download that Helicon Focus program.


Frank Giacobbe said...

Great work. Love the details.

How do you feel about the lamp post? I've seen those, but haven't tried them along side a structure.

It looks really good in the photo, but how do you feel about overall size and scale on the lamp post?

Christopher Brimley said...

The lamp post works & feels great. The biggest thing that worried me was the size of the globe. I noticed on some of the prototypes that they were fairly dirty, so after I attacked it with some india ink/alcohol it seamed to scale it down.

Denny said...

Good stuff here! I love the weathering job on the sidewalk.

Christopher Brimley said...

Im glad you like the sidewalks, this was my first attempt at making side walks and when the time comes I will use a similar method to make them.