Cowleaze Farm progress 1

I have been working on the area of the stable yard and the small garden at the end of the farmhouse. The buildings have been set into their bases and the gaps around filled with a filler/PVA mix. Weeds have been added using short static grass. The surface of the yard was basically already done but I have added some cobbles and a drainage channel using scribed filler and added weeds, a mound of manure and some wood awaiting cutting into logs for the house. Weathering powders were used to give some variation in colour to the yard surface. The farm was a fairly poor farm so will look rather run down as controlling weeds etc was not priority.

stable yard 002

I have also begun to prepare the ground for the vegetable garden. The surface of the earth is a mixture of filler, sawdust, PVA and some Woodlands scenic earth pigment. This is based on the method described by Stephen Williams is his books on modelling Great Western branch lines . It will next be painted with a suitable earth colour after which it will be planted up but firstly all the various vegetable and fruit plants will need to be made!. More of that later.

garden 003

Cowleaze farm- stone walls

I have made a start on the stone walling which encloses the garden and orchard.
The base is 2 thicknesses of card one of which fits into a slot in the foundations of the scenery.

The stones along the top are made from strips of mounting board chopped into small pieces and stuck into PVA. The whole lot is then covered with filler mixed with a small amount of PVA. This helps it stick to the card and also harden enough to be scribed. When dry the stone courses are scribed into the plaster with a sharp metal scriber.

The stones are now painted with watercolour. I used charcoal grey, Chinese White, raw sienna and raw umber in varying amounts to get the colours.
Windsor and Newton no longer seem to do a charcoal grey but neutral tint is the nearest match.


Cowleaze Farm

A new project I have taken on is to install the buildings and complete the surrounding scenery for the Cowleaze Farm tray for Pendon. This farm sits towards the back of the ‘Vale’ scene and the hole where the tray will be installed can be seen in the photo below.

2014-05-06 at 12-13-20

The buildings were all built some years ago and need fitting to their cellar bases and detailing around added. This will include the surface of the stable yard, gardens, an orchard and stone walling to surround the site.

In the next picture the main farmhouse building is in it’s base along with the garage and cart shed. The empty bases will take the stables and pigsties. The basic card for the stone walls is taking shape and a start has been made on colouring the bleached carpet felt to represent the grass.

2014-07-01 at 15-28-22

Plenty more to do!

Static Grass Convert

I had a good exhibition with Yeoton Wfarf at St Albans last weekend though the layout could have run better. During a break I had a long chat with Gordon Gravett who was demonstrating the use of static grass. I have tended in the past to dislike this form of scenery as I associated it with large expanses of model grass all the same colours looking like a billiard table. I am now converted to the idea of static grass as I was shown that it is possible to vary the length and colour of the fibres and also incorporate other textures and scatter materials with it.
Also it is not necessary to go out and purchase an electronic gadget costing around £75 to create the effect. I purchased some packs of static grass fibres from Greenscenes and a puffer bottle made by Noch from another stand as recommended by Gordon. I have now down some test pieces with different textures and colours and have been very impressed. Obviously if one wants to cover very large areas then purchasing an electric electrostatic device makes it easier but for the type of work I want to do, then the puffer bottle is ideal and cheaper.
I will try it out on the 3mm scale, 14.2mm gauge layout we are building at the Launceston and District MRC, about which I will write more later.