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3D Print Painting

September 25, 2017

3D Printing is something that my husband has been dabbling in for a few years now. As I mentioned in my post about our Catan Board, I didn’t see the point in it all, until I got into the painting and embellishing side of things.

Recently he printed a fairly large moon city by Kijai, on Thingiverse and I fell in love with the model on sight. I asked him to print me a mini version as well so that I could make it into a christmas ornament.

When I was finished painting both of them I had a look at Kijai’s other models and fell in love with a few more, which my husband also printed for me and they are also featured in this post, along with brief explanations of my painting/embellishing process.

I have so many photos to feature here that I have broken them down into galleries.

The first model is the moon city! There is an eye screw inserted into the back of the small one for hanging.

Most people seem to spray paint this model with solid metallic paints as it is an easy, simple way to highlight all of the facets and make the model look more complete.

I wanted to take it to the next level, bringing out all of the beautiful details, but I did really like the idea of using metallic paints, as the model itself reminds me of a geode that has been cracked open to reveal sparkling secrets. So the main colors I used were silver, metallic blue and a metallic red/copper on the inside to make it shine and in contrast, I painted the outside a very dull moon-grey.

I was a little worried at first that the colors would look awkward together, but they’ve really grown on me and I’m delighted with how they turned out!

As with all of my prints, I always paint the whole thing in a uniform color (Grey in this case) to prime it. I then painted the backgrounds and all of the rocky bits. I made sure to complete the background with the milky way sky scene before moving onto the buildings. All of the painting, on both models was achieved with several layers over the course of a few days. I used a toothbrush loaded up with white and silver paint to create the random star patterns.

Click on the gallery below to view the full size photos.

Next I’ll talk about the castle gates. One of these gates has simpler details than the other as it shows the artists progression in skill, however I adore both of the designs equally.

The basic colors that I used and mixed for all of the designs below were black, white, green, light brown, dark brown, purple and copper.

I’ll start with this one which I’ve affectionately named Gorse Castle, for all of the yellow flowering bushes I created to surround it.

First I primed the plastic. Then I painted in the base colors, followed by several layers of shading. The rooftops are actually a dark purple with copper highlights, but with the flash of the camera you mostly see copper in the photos. You will also probably notice, if you follow this blog that the metallic/red/copper color comes out a lot in my pieces as it’s my favorite paint to work with.

I have accumulated quite a few bits of modeling finishing materials (clump foliage and grass flock) over the years, however my current supplier where I can get just about anything that I could possibly imagine from is Serious Play Scenics. It’s always incredibly nice to find a UK supplier who has so much variety to offer, and is also personally passionate about what they’re selling.

After the paint dried and before I applied any embellishments, the models looked like this:

Notice that it is important to add a base color even if you’re planning to cover it up with modelling flock.

I used PVA to apply the flock, which was actually a mixture of grass flock and nail decorating flock, (furry nails are a thing apparently) which has a bit of a sheen to it. This was to achieve a difference in texture, but also color. Just needed to make due with what I had to hand.

I did this in a couple of layers as well to build up some areas more than others. I am not an expert by any means, but trial and error is a wonderful thing.

Next the bushes were applied, and finally I broke up some solid yellow clump foliage which is meant for autumn trees, to make the yellow flower clusters. Each little tuft was glued on individually.

The piece is much better looking in person than it is in the photos as the flash of the camera tends to highlight shine and gaps which creates an inaccurate representation, however photographing it without the flash leaves out a great deal of detail.

My favorite thing about this model is the tunnel that runs under the gate!

Click on the gallery below to view full size photos.

Next I’ll talk a little bit about the other castle gate. I didn’t name this one, but that doesn’t mean I like it any less! It’s is also actually the more detailed model which made painting it and shading it a bit easier as there were more facets for the washes to sink into.

I primed and painted this model exactly the same as the others with several layers, and I applied the same flock mix and bushes to the base as well (in layers).

I have a bit of “mixed berry” foliage which contains dark green with purple flowers and some other shades of green with red flowers. I broke up some of the green and purple clumps to create some pretty climbing plants all around the castle. Each tiny tuft was glued on individually which took a lot of time, but the effect was worth it.

This castle also has a path which I could have left painted, but I wanted a bit of texture so I glued in some ground up cork powder and painted over the top of it for a bit of shading. This was my first time using the cork stuff instead of fine gravel and I have to say that I liked it. I would love to build up my supplies to contain several different textures of sand and pebbles, but that will have to wait.

Click on the gallery below to view full size photos of this castle!

Lastly, a wee bit about the tree stump house!

Not anything new to add here about the process to be honest as the painting process is pretty standard and it was exactly the same as the castle gate with the climbing foliage and cork. The only difference is that the model was in two pieces, so I needed to glue them together at the end.

I love that the base is quite large, as it inspires all sorts of embellishing options. I went for a very plain finish on the base this time though as I can always get my husband to print me another one in the future… and I am sure that I will!

I’d like to note that I haven’t sealed any of my pieces. I probably should, but I don’t have anything in a matte finish to do it with just now.

Well, those are all of the updates that I have for today. I am working on another large moon city, which I’ll reveal once completed and I have a lot of other new miniature projects in the works, but money and time seriously affect the speed of my progress. :)

Really need a shelf to store all of these things on!

If you liked this post, you can also check out More 3D Print Painting and Even More 3D Print Painting … for more and EVEN MORE of the same :)

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