Flowers & Foliage
 

Up   Basic Brushwork   Painting & Patterns   Treasures & Trinkets

Monsters & Minis   Additions & Adornments   Flowers & Foliage

Perfect Plaster   Concept to Completion   Clay Creations

 

Instant Trees (Click thumbnails for larger images)

 

Materials:

Dried Buddleia Flower Spikes

Spray Adhesive

Adhesive Tape

Flock

Stage 1

This is the most time consuming bit. Find a buddleia bush, and remove some dead flower spikes, leaving plenty of extra stem.

Stage 2

Thoroughly dry the spikes, and remove any leaves or other material you don't want.

Stage 3

Cover the remaining stem with adhesive tape and liberally coat the rest with the spray adhesive - this is best done outside.

Stage 4

Cover the foliage section with scenic flock - easiest if you put lots of flock in a tub, and dunk the tree into it. Once dry, remove the tape.

Stage 5

This picture shows some finished trees, with a figure to show scale. The largest here is over 4" tall, but the flowers grow to 8"-9" in length.

Ivy (Click thumbnails for larger images)

Materials:

Skullcrafts Leaf Scatter

PVA / White Glue

Nylon Pan Scourer

Dark Green / Black Spray

Cocktail Stick

Aluminium Foil

Stage 1

Cut the rough shape of the required ivy patch from the pan scourer. Tear the edges, and spray with a dark green or black undercoat. Attach to model using PVA glue.

Stage 2

Squeeze a thin line of PVA glue at the base. Use a piece of foil to protect any areas you don't want glue. Use a cocktail stick to place a row of leaves onto the scourer.

Stage 3

Leave for a few minutes for the glue to begin setting, then apply a second row just above the first.

Stage 4

Continue upwards until the whole of the scourer is covered with the leaf scatter.

Stage 5

Add a few extra leaves to look like tendrils.

Vines (Click thumbnails for larger images)

Materials:

Skullcrafts Leaf Scatter

PVA / White Glue

Plant Stems (I have used dried stems from an alpine plant - I think it was "Veronica")

Cocktail Stick

Stage 1

Select a piece of plant stem that is about the right size for your vine. Trim off any excess, and  attach the base of the stem to your model using PVA glue.

Stage 2

Either clamp the bottom of the stem, or wait until the glue dries. Slowly work your way to the ends of the branches, gluing when necessary to achieve a pleasing shape.

Stage 3

Here, you can see a couple of small glue spots, and a lot of clamps and clothes pegs. Try to spread out the branches to give a fairly open structure.

Stage 4

This is my finished branch structure. There are 3 separate stems at the base, which have given me enough branches. Now leave it to dry.

Stage 5

Get organised before you start adding the leaves - it is a fiddly process. Get some reference material, to help you achieve a realistic look to your plant.

Stage 6

Add a small spot of glue to the model, where you want some foliage to be. Starting at the furthest end from the stem, start adding leaves.

Stage 7

Wet the tip of the cocktail stick, and use it to pick up a single leaf. Twist it until it points in the right direction, and place it gently onto the glue.

Stage 8

Continue adding patches around all the branches, until you have achieved the effect you want. A few dead leaves around the base completes the vine.

Birch Catkin Leaves (Click thumbnails for larger images)

Materials:

Birch Catkins (also called cones, these are the seed pods of birch trees - info on Wikipedia if you're not sure what to look for)

Freezer

Microwave

Small Plastic Container

Stage 1

As the catkins ripen, they turn brown. Just dry them out in a warm place. Whilst young, however they are still green. To preserve the colour, I tried a "freeze drying" method. Put your catkins in an OPEN plastic container, and place it in the freezer overnight. Remove, microwave for a minute, and return to the freezer. Leave to refreeze, and microwave again.

Stage 2

The catkins should now be dry, and still retain some green colouration.

Twist the catkins in your fingers, and they should fall apart. The "leaves" are the parts of the catkin separating the seeds - both are shown in the first picture.

Should you want darker colours, dye them with thinned waterproof inks, microwave & leave to dry.

Simple Hedges (Click thumbnails for larger images)

 

Materials:

Green Pan Scourers

Matt Board or other basing material

Flock

Static Grass

PVA (White Glue)

Stapler

Spray Adhesive & Masking Tape

Stage 1

Shopping: try to get hold of pan scourers which are 6" x 4" size, and a suitable green colour for foliage. If you can't find a suitable colour you will have to spray paint them - black or dark brown will work OK.

Stage 2

Cut the scourer into two 2" strips with a pair of sharp scissors.

Stage 3

Fold the strip in half along its length, and staple through the double thickness.

 

Stage 4

Trim the folded edge using scissors. Just cut small indentations in line with the staples to indicate separate bushes within the hedge.

 

Stage 5

Take a few of the pieces you have trimmed, and push them up inside the pockets at the base of the hedge to bulk up one or two of the bushes.

 

Stage 6

Cut a base from matt board, or whatever other basing material you usually use. Match the length to the hedge section, and make the width about 1".

Stage 7

Attach the hedge to the centre of the base using PVA. Be sure to use plenty of glue as any excess will not be visible once the piece is finished.

 

Stage 8

Glue a few pieces of rock or other rubble to the exposed sides of the base. Set the piece aside to allow the glue to dry thoroughly before continuing.

 

Stage 9

Using masking tape, cover the exposed areas of the base material on both sides of the hedge.

 

Stage 10

Take the hedge outside, and coat all the pan scourer with spray adhesive. Place the piece in a suitable container and coat it liberally with flock. Turn over, tap off the excess and pour the unused flock back into its bag.

Stage 11

Carefully remove the masking tape and paint any rocks or other pieces you have added to the sides of the base.

 

Stage 12

Paint the exposed sides of the matt board in a suitable colour.

 

Stage 13

Paint a watered down mixture of PVA onto all the exposed areas of the base.

Place the model back into the flock container and sprinkle with static grass. Turn over, tap and reclaim the unused material as before.

Stage 14

The finished hedge. Other suitable accessories could be painted and then added to the piece - a broken cart wheel, for example.

Topiary Trees (Click thumbnails for larger images)

 

Materials:

Pan Scourer

Cocktail Stick

PVA (white glue)

Flock

Spray Adhesive & Masking Tape

Suitable Pot

Plaster

Stage 1

Cut a couple of small circles from the scouring pad, and carefully push a cocktail stick through the centre of the disks. Trim the resulting piece to a rough ball shape.

Stage 2

Trim the top end of the cocktail stick, and cover the "stem" with masking tape. Spray the scourer with adhesive, and liberally cover with flock.

Stage 3

Remove the masking tape, and paint or stain the stem in a brown colour. Trim the bottom of the cocktail stick to a suitable length.

Stage 4

Paint the "plant pot". Add a drop or two of plaster to the container, and place the stem of the plant into the plaster. Leave to dry.

Stage 5

Paint the plaster in a suitable grey/brown colour to represent earth.

If you like, you could add a little coloured sand on top of the earth as a mulch.

Water Lilies (Click thumbnails for larger images)

Materials:

Clear Model Base

Green Thread

Pin Vice & Drill Bit

Hole Punch & Paper

Thin Wire

Clear Epoxy Adhesive

Paint & Varnish

Stage 1

Drill a hole though the base with the pin vice and a suitable bit - I used a 3mm bit here.

Stage 2

Cut some short lengths of green thread, and stick them together at one end using clear varnish. Once dry, stick the thread to some cellophane (a CD wrapper works well). Align the base over the centre of the threads, and use some tape to secure it in place.

Stage 3

Mix some of the clear epoxy adhesive, and use a cocktail stick or similar implement to fill the hole around the threads. Once dry, trim the threads level with the edge of the hole.

Stage 4

Cut some circles of green paper with the hole punch, to represent the lily pads.

Stage 5

With a sharp knife, cut a "V" into the edge of each leaf.

Stage 6

Using a small amount of clear varnish, glue the lily pads with the end of the "V" at the end of a thread.

Stage 7

For a flower bud, dip the end of a piece of thin wire into undiluted green paint, and suspend paint-end downward to dry. You may need to repeat this process.

Stage 8

Trim the wire to length and fix into the middle of the leaves with another small drop of varnish.

Semi-submerged Rocks (Click thumbnails for larger images)

Materials:

Clear Model Base

Pin Vice & Drill Bit

Plaster

Paint & Varnish

Stage 1

Drill a rough ring of holes though the base with the pin vice and a suitable bit. You can use a large drill bit and a power drill if you like, but the next steps will be tougher unless you also have a mini-drill.

Stage 2

Carefully join up the holes with a craft knife. Working from the lower surface, start to slope the hole outwards.

Stage 3

Continue carving, until you have made a smooth surface, hiding the original drill bit holes. If you have one, you can use a mini-drill and a suitable rasp bit for this part.

Stage 4

Paint the inside of the hole with a couple of layers of acrylic - I used a dark grey/brown. Leave to dry.

Stage 5

Mix a small quantity of plaster, and wait till it becomes like a thin paste. With the base upside-down, pour in a suitable amount to slightly overfill the cavity.

Stage 6

Lift the base, and force the plaster through the hole, until it protrudes slightly above the surface.

Leave to dry.

Stage 7

Add a couple of layers of gloss varnish to the surface of the resin, which will increase the transparency. Leave to dry.

Stage 8

Drybrush the top of the plaster with a suitable colour and highlight to finish.

Bull-rushes (Cattails) (Click thumbnails for larger images)

Materials:

Clear Model Base

Pin Vice & Drill Bit

Paint & Varnish

Field Grass

Thin Wire

Sand

Superglue

PVA (White Glue)

Stage 1

Take a pinch of field grass, and cut it in half to obtain a suitable length. Hold the grass between you finger and thumb, and rub it as shown to get a more uneven appearance to the cut end.

Stage 2

Carefully place a small drop of superglue in the centre of the grass and twist the free end with your other hand. This should spread the glue over the fibres to give a strong joint. Leave till the glue is dry.

Stage 3

Cut the grass in half through the centre of the superglue joint to obtain two bunches.

Stage 4

Select a suitable sized drill bit for the bunch, and make a hole through the base.

Stage 5

Place a drop of clear gloss varnish in the hole.

Stage 6

Insert a bunch of rushes into the varnish and twist it around to ensure good coverage. Leave for a few minutes, and wipe off any excess varnish from the base. 

Stage 7

Cut a piece of wire to an appropriate length - slightly taller than the bunch of rushes.

Stage 8

Add a drop of PVA to one end of the wire, liberally coating about 5mm (1/5")

Stage 9

Dip the end into sand, ensuring good coverage. Gently roll the sandy end on a piece of paper if necessary, to get a thin "sausage" shape.

Stage 10

Allow the glue to dry before painting the whole assembly with a dark brown colour.

Stage 11

Push a map pin through the middle of the bunch of rushes to make a small hole, and insert the wire. Try to avoid holding the sand whilst doing this step.

 

free hit counter

Contact me with suggestions, comments or questions.