Evolution of a Blog

This blog has evolved as I have as a maker. It starts at the beginning of my journey where I began to re-tread my tires in the useful lore of micro electronics and the open-source software that can drive them. While building solutions around micro-electronics are still an occasional topic my more recent focus has been on the 3D Printing side of making.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Terraforming Mars and 3D Hubs - Part 3 - Some Painting

 I am, by no means, and experienced model painter though I do enjoy the concentration that it requires and the results that can be achieved.  This article covers painting of two of the speciality filaments that I talked about previously, a clear one for the ocean tiles, and one with a matt surface for the desert-like terrain of Mars. One tile, printed in normal PLA will also be painted for comparison to the matt material tiles.  In the first image the matt tiles are the four in the rear.

The first tiles to get painted were the ocean tiles.  I did the back using matt varnish and a rust colored pigment.  The primary colour is a mix of 2 parts transparent blue and 1 part transparent green.  The white is supposed to represent foam at the top of two wave crests that are part of the tile that I designed as an extension to Frank's collection.  My attempts to get a maximally clear print led me to have a lot more visible 3D Printing artifacts so I think that regular PLA would have been fine, if not better, for this use case.

The next set of tiles are the ones printed from a High Performance PLA with a matt finish.  I wanted to have depth to these tiles so I pulled out my collection of pigments and did a quick color chart.  I picked three of them, in addition to basic Rust, to add some a darker red, a burnt red, and a yellow.  First I painted on the basic Rust colour using a mix of varnish and pigment.  Then I added tiny dabs of the other three colors using a nearly dry brush.  I finished with a very dry brush of black and then added some black to the sides of cracks to look like shadows.  Painting was done of the structures in the meantime.

The last tile to get painted was printed in PLA and then painted in exactly the same manner as above.  I think it looks as good as the one printed from the much more expensive filament!  Oh well.

At this point I have the above tiles that I consider completed (including the other eight ocean tiles).    I have also largely finished thirteen of the twenty two green tiles that I intend to have.  I am now working to complete the remainder of the green tiles and have started to prime the city tiles.  I am still struggling with the volcano tile and have the capital city tile printed but not painted.  Finally, I have the Industrial and Exclusion areas finished as I had done them when I first started experimenting.

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