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Author Previous Topic: The freelance California Railway & Navigation Co Topic Next Topic: The Coos Bay and Willamette Valley
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Michael Hohn
Fireman



Posted - 11/17/2018 :  8:20:50 PM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Andre,

I agree with Marks suggestions and would have said much the same. And I think your work would be very good as distant mountains if there were fewer peaks and they were not as pointy. You did a good job. There are many good backdrops with mountain scenery in the Gazette that you get some pointers from.

Mike


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Nobody living can ever stop me, as I go walking that freedom highway -- Woody Guthrie

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OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 11/17/2018 :  8:48:42 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Mike.

Thanks, I always appreciate your input.

The symmetry and pointy peaks are the thing that bother me the most. It could have been I put that many peaked mountains in the scene for practice fodder... can't remember. Anyway, I'm hopeful I can come up with ways to paint a funky-fantastic Colorado backdrop that I can be happy with. I'm so close to actually trying a 19th century Colorado theme that it would be a shame to wienie-out again and retreat back to diesels yet again.

FWIW:

I did indeed stop by Hobby Lobby this evening and picked up a 24" x 48" canvas. Even picked up a cheap practice pack of brushes. All my tube acrylics are still good, so I'm okay there. Once home from church tomorrow and lunch eaten, I may go to Walmart and pick up a quart of flat white latex paint and pick out a quart of sky blue. Perhaps I can get started painting tomorrow afternoon/evening. (Supposed to be rainy and cold tomorrow, so I doubt I'll want to work on my vintage Zundapp motorcycle that's out in my shop in the garage.)

All fer now!

Andre



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OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 11/19/2018 :  11:13:53 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
All:

I did indeed go get the white and blue paint yesterday afternoon. Soon thereafter I had the canvas primed with flat white. As of a few minutes ago, the first coat of "Wild Blue Yonder" is drying. Brushing on the coat of white with a 2" brush reminded why I used small (6") rollers to roll-on my base colors! Once the second coat of blue goes on and is dry... it will be time to dust off the acrylic tubes and start in.

One way or the other, I've got to determine if a funky-fantastic 19th century Colorado layout is in my future. Time to poop or get off the pot, in a manner of speaking.

To reuse the old phrase: "Pikes Peak or Bust!"

Andre



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OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 11/19/2018 :  1:12:16 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
So... what'cha think? Huh? HUH??



Didn't I do a masterful job of painting on that coat of box stock "Wild Yonder Blue"?

From seeing this result, no doubt I'm well on my way to topping John Allen or Malcolm Furlow. No problem.

BTW...

Paint can instructions say that I'm to wait FOUR friggin' HOURS before a recoat.

Let the thumb twiddling begin.

Andre



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OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 11/20/2018 :  3:19:02 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Putzin' around with clouds...



Pic doesn't do the blue justice.

Different techniques used to produce the two. Technique used on the right results in less time to produce a cloud.

All fer now.

Andre




Edited by - OK Hogger on 11/20/2018 3:21:21 PM

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Michael Hohn
Fireman



Posted - 11/20/2018 :  5:20:07 PM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Andre,

I think the second cloud is the better one.

However, I offer this idea: a western sky does not need any clouds at all. Also, your railroad is likely to spend much of its time in deep river valleys with limited sky to be see. Hereís an example from my trip to Colorado this year.



I was aiming the camera uphill so thereís a lot more sky visible than in most of the photos I took.

My point is that the sky can be very simple and you should not let your ability to do clouds be a game-changer.

Mike


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Orionvp17
Fireman

Premium Member

Posted - 11/20/2018 :  5:50:17 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Andre,

I'll agree with Mike that the second one is the better of the two.

That said, I'm going to toss a grenade on the table here. Clouds are dynamic, and even the late, great, John Allen, when asked if he would like to have changed anything on the railroad, noted that he'd "get rid of the clouds." Once you paint them in, you're stuck looking at them all the time. And if they're dramatic, they can distract attention from the railroad itself.

Instead, I'll recommend that you either go with severe clear, or essentially dry-brush in some very light, wispy, almost invisible, thin, flat white cirrus clouds, which are a precursor of Weather Yet to Come. If you can barely see these, you've nailed them.

Clouds, like weathering on the front of the Fast Mail or the Bugtown Flyer, don't just happen... they're caused and have implications and specific characteristics and so on. Hinting at them will give you a nice effect without distractions.

And as always, this is Your railroad, and Rule One governs.

Have fun!

Pere
in Michigan



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hminky
Fireman



Posted - 11/20/2018 :  6:25:06 PM  Show Profile  Visit hminky's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Your clouds look great, I used them to cover defects in my backdrop.



Harold



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OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 11/20/2018 :  8:07:55 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks all, for some input.

Mike:

That is a startlingly beautiful sky in that photo. Such a sky color poses quite a problem for modelers: IF you try to nail that color... it's going to look too "intense" and too blue to 99% that view the layout, either in person or via photos. Thus far, I'm understating the blue intensity with my color selection... but I may rethink and go with just a touch more intensity? (I only purchased a small can, so no great loss if I switch colors.)

Your scene in that picture almost looks like it was taken on the Atlantic side of Alpine Pass?

Good point about modeling a cloudless day. That would certainly eliminate a slight consternation point. Perhaps the issue wouldn't be as clouded to me then.

More about clouds later on down below.

Pere:

Your good point about "less can be more" regarding the concept of clouds on a backdrop is understood and food for thought. Again, more about clouds down below.

Harold:

Your clouds look pretty stinkin' good, too!

Also, I agree that clouds, like weathering, can be used to hide little things that irk one about their subject at hand, be it a backdrop or a piece of rolling stock.

Clouds:

Never really entered my mind to model a cloudless sky. I like what clouds bring to a layout. Well executed clouds add a good bit of realistic "naturalness" (and, to a degree "drama") to a backdrop. Case in point:



Of course, that backdrop scene was painted Mike Danneman, a professional artist!

Obviously, I will need to be satisfied with clouds that are notably less beautiful than Mike's IF I go forward with the idea of painting clouds onto my backdrop.

In the past I've painted clouds since layout #4 as well as on this unfinished layout in the computer room in which I'm sitting now. (Would that one be layout #4 1/2?) Like I said, the thought of doing Colorado without clouds never entered my mind.

Mike:

Clouds/no clouds would not the game changer. The game changer would be if I simply cannot create mountain scenes that I'm okay with.

I do not want to use photo backdrops. For one thing, if I use commercially available Colorado backdrops, then my backdrops would then look like many other modeler's commercially obtained Colorado backdrops. (There are only so many Colorado backgrounds available.)

BUT, the real reason I want to paint my own backdrop is that I want to create MY Colorado: Steeper than typical mountainsides, more drama/etc.

I realize my desire to funkify my backdrop flies in the face of contemporary layout thinking, but I make no bones about it: I want a funky fantastic world that I will enjoy immersing myself into. THAT desire is the MAIN reason I'm tackling (at long last) a 19th century Colorado layout.

Take away the hope of creating a funky fantastic Colorado layout... and with it goes my desire to model 19th century. Might as well do diesels. (And if I should retreat to diesels, then I might as well think about upsizing the models and simplifying things with an eye toward the future.)

So, there you have it.

By the way... the wife just said that she thinks my clouds are "great", too! ("Great" minds, Harold! ) BUT, she's not a model railroader... and... she sort of likes me and thus is prejudiced.

In summation...

SO, at this point, I'm willing to accept that I can likely get some clouds onto the backdrop that I can be okay with... so it's time to tackle distant mountains next.

I plan to start on those tomorrow.

BTW: Along with putzin' with clouds, today I got two more passenger cars ready to roll. (Speaking of which: THAT goal has changed. No longer intending to paint/decal/weather before a piece is considered ready for the layout. Now I'm just trying to get enough pieces that are "roll ready" so I can have some stuff to move about... I'll tackle paint/decals/weathering later!)

All fer now!

Andre



Edited by - OK Hogger on 11/20/2018 9:13:13 PM

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Michael Hohn
Fireman



Posted - 11/21/2018 :  03:13:11 AM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Andre,

I donít think anybody has painted a backdrop as intense as in my photo.

A couple things to keep in mind is that the sky is lighter near the horizon. Also, clouds are smaller and there are more of them visible near the horizon.

Mike


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Nobody living can ever stop me, as I go walking that freedom highway -- Woody Guthrie

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Michael Hohn
Fireman



Posted - 11/21/2018 :  03:32:47 AM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Looking out a window at Cheyenne station:



Clouds look a lot like yours.

Hereís a view of Harry Brunks layout in the Cheyenne depot museum depicting Colorado mountain railroading.



Mike


_______________________________________________________________________________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me, as I go walking that freedom highway -- Woody Guthrie

Country: USA | Posts: 4130 Go to Top of Page

OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 11/21/2018 :  11:56:00 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Mike!

Cheyenne pic:

Again, the sky appears much more blue than the blue I'm using. I wonder if such a vibrant blue is a "digital" thing? Guess next time I stroll to the Hobby Shack, I need to look above the trees and see what color our sky is today.

Harry Brunk pic:

I see that Harry also used a much more pale blue (compared to your CO and WY pics) that's quite similar to my blue selection. As for me, I'm considering going one shade darker and see what that looks like. I may want to purchase another canvas to compare the two if/when it gets to that point.

All fer now!

Andre



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Michael Hohn
Fireman



Posted - 11/21/2018 :  3:28:38 PM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Andre,

Yes, could be the digital thing creating the vibrant sky.

Mike


_______________________________________________________________________________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me, as I go walking that freedom highway -- Woody Guthrie

Country: USA | Posts: 4130 Go to Top of Page

railman28
Fireman



Posted - 11/22/2018 :  01:31:16 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Andre, Sorry to be late but, I like your clouds. But Mike makes a good point too. High mountains and trees, less sky.


It's only make-believe

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OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 11/26/2018 :  12:39:04 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

Thanks for the encouragement, Rob.

All:

Currently stalled after getting the base color up for a distant mountain range. I'm stymied as to how to start producing the effect of contour along with some snow caps. Don't know what I did on that 20-year old paint scene. Unfortunately, the only jpeg I have of it (above) is too lo-res to glean anything.

Quite sobering how imagineering a backdrop scene is SO much easier than actually producing it with paint and brushes.

Andre



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