Sunday, July 28, 2013

Cultists of R'lyeh pt.4 - the Cyclopean Ruins

The last of the terrain tiles to use the cold porcelain was the Cyclopean Ruins. I wanted something Stonehenge-like, maybe with some oddly shaped pillars. Maybe some broken walls coming together at odd angles. What I ended up with was five stone monoliths, with engravings, in a circle.
I originally glued these five MDF stumps to the hexagonal base to serve as armatures for my Mountains of Madness, which I was also going to sculpt out of cold porcelain. But my first attempt at sculpting the mountains was a disaster. It was clear that I had to go a different rout with that one, so I set those tiles aside for later. Later eventually came, and I recycled the armatures for my mountains into the monoliths for my Cyclopean Ruins.
The actually sculpting of the monoliths was harder than it should have been, because the posts were already glued down, and didn't leave much room for my hands to work. I wrapped flattened out sheets of clay around the posts and squared them off so that they looked more like Stonehenge monoliths and less like termite mounds. Then I carved a few cracks into the surface with a sharp point. Then I went about the laborious task of carving glyphs into the clay on each side of each pillar. For that I used a bamboo skewer. I also added a little clay to the base to give the ground some texture.
The color scheme for the Cyclopean ruins was going to be green. So, after a primer coat of flat black, I layered four different shades of green on the tile. Heavy coverage at the edge, and less towards the middle, just like the other tiles. The top coat was a florescent green that would react in the UV of our room. I also used some grey and a touch of green, both dry brushed, on the monoliths themselves, to make them look like weathered stone. The most difficult and time consuming part of the painting were the glyphs. I had to paint each one with a tiny brush, getting into the cracks and crevices. There was a lot of painting and wiping, and then re-painting. My first one came out OK, but the color in the glyphs didn't pop, so on the others I painted a base coat of white into the glyphs and put the florescent green on top of it.
 Because of all the intricate carving, and the double painting of the glyphs, these tiles were a real pain in the ass to make. Buy they turned out nice. Not quite what I was originally picturing, but they convey the essence of a Cyclopean Ruin.

See also:
Cultists of R'lyeh pt.1- the Desolate Waste
Cultists of R'lyeh pt.2- the Pits of Despair
Cultists of R'lyeh pt.3- the Ravenous Cavern
Cultists of R'lyeh pt.4- the Cyclopean Ruins
Cultists of R'lyeh pt.5- the Sanguine Gorge
Cultists of R'lyeh pt.6- the Mountains of Madness
Cultists of R'lyeh pt.7- the Game Pieces, Portals, et Fini
Cultists of R'lyeh - After four years of wear and tear

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