Monday, October 3, 2016

Verminlord Skrax' Lair - Title Plaque - How I did it

Doing a painted title plaque was a last minute idea for my display board. I wanted originally just to do a simple print of the army title and stick it on the base. However I knew it would look cheap and unimpressive, even if you find the perfect font for it (which is Dark Crystal font, by the way).

I thought of this idea because I wanted something hand painted to title the whole board. So here is the process of how I went about doing it:
Start off by printing off the text onto label paper. Label paper is just a big sheet of paper with a sticker backing. It's primarily meant for printing labels onto things. I kept the size of the font so it would fit within the 1" thick base of the board. Luckily the font I donwloaded had an outline version, which made this so much easier. I cut out a sizeable portion of the label paper and stuck it on a piece of plasticard, then stuck the outlying sticker on a piece of wood that I usually do my cutting and painting on. This is to prevent curling and a hard back for the painting. As the paint would dry, the whole thing would want to warp. You can see the outline of the plasticard underneath the label.
Next I painted within the text and the background of the title, trying to keep within and without the lines as much as possible. I purposefully painted outside the boundaries of the plague because I knew I was going to cut it out, and it would be better than having white within the cut.
Using the colors of my army's armor and warpstone, I painted a reflection type gradient. This was easier than I thought because I didn't bother with any sort of wet blending, just applying layers of the right colors.
Next I applied a layer of a lighter red surrounding the text to bring it out a little more. It still blends well enough with the background.
To finish the text, I used a fine tip black ink marker to recorrect the original black outline. It sharpens up the details. Then I give the whole thing plenty of time to dry, so any tendency to warp would be done by now.
I marked out the borders with a fine tip pen and cut it out using a hobby knife and a metal ruler to ensure the angles were as right and edges straight as possible.
Then using a black I painted a thin uneven border around it just for effect. Some warping still happened, but not as much if I hadn't use the label paper to keep the whole thing down. Also I painted along the white edges of the plasticard so it wouldn't stand out, that can really distract the from the overall feel of it.

Then I gave the whole thing a quick coat of spray on matte varnish to protect it, and glued it to the display board.

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