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> Sculpting Fire - how to set greenstuff alight (Pics Added)
SteveFirth
post Oct 14 2005, 11:13 AM
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Hot enough for you?
user posted image

Unfortunately I have no in-progress shots of this, but maybe I can make some more fire on the weekend and take some photos on the way, no please don't make me do it :-D

I am very new to GS sculpting, one GW blister pack and now just starting on my 100g ribbon from Reddwarf. I must say the fresher(?) ribbon is much easier to work with than the GW pack.

I started small on the weapons of my beastmen, but the technique is the same all the way up to the flames on the bloodthirster above. The modeling tool of choice was my 1st year biology dissection kit pointy thing, called a 'point', basically a 2mm thick, pointy ended pin on a handle. It has taken a bit of a beating and broke, now it's either held in my pin vise or my hobby blade holder.

Most things I read about GS say to mix it then let it rest for 15 - 30 min before you use it, don't do that. To get the shape of the fire you want the GS at it's most malleable, so use it right away, fresh GS is even softer and it works better.
Start with a blob of GS, stretch this out across the surface and using the round/butt end of the tool press it onto the surface to get a good grip as you are about to try to pull it back off again.
A note on moistening your tool (sounds vaguely rude), I use spit, easily available, has great surface properties due to all the protein so it coats well. Also we only want the tool to be moistened some of the time, we actually want it to stick later on, so mixing the GS with vaseline or coating tools with vas is no good.
Now start dragging the GS up into peaks with the pointy end, twist and twirl as you pull it up to get the swirling shapes of flames. When the moisture dries out on the point the GS will stick, pull the GS away again but now pull so far it breaks off, you should have two fine points of GS, one on the main bit, another stuck to your tool. Push the bit on the tool back onto the main GS leaving the point sticking up. Sometimes the GS is too soft and will flop over so you need to do this a number of times to bulk up the 'flame'.
Once you have some good leaping flames it's time to do all the smaller bits to give depth to the fire. Stick the pointy tool into the GS and pull out and up to give smaller flames around the base of the tall stuff. Always remember to give the GS a final upward movement as flame always rises, even on flamethrowers shooting horizontally the last bit of flame licks upward.
The more detail you can add the better the flames will look in the end. To get 'sheets' of flame pull some GS up with the tool, then grab it with your fingers and pull it up more to stretch it out flat, then use the tool to fold and twist again to get random shapes and remove fingerprints.
GS gets too brittle so the really big peaks/long flames I use a simple wire armature. The Bloodthirster base has 20 or so bits of florist wire sticking up around the resin stonework in the middle that the BT is standing on. The DP fire does not look as good as I could only get one ring of flames, the BT has greater depth available on the base so I could stagger the vertical pins for the leaping flame.
user posted image
For these larger flames I put a thick layer of GS on the base, in and around the upright bits of wire, then rolled a cylinder of GS which I jammed down the length of the wire as this bulks up the flame.

That's a lot of writing with no pics, so I'll get some on the weekend that illustrate the technique.

Onto the painting.
There is lots of hard to get at bits on these flames, there is lots of 3D bits so they are perfect for drybrushing. I started with two coats of white, using an old brush that I jammed into the nooks and crannies and made sure it was wet with paint so paint would also run down into gaps. It is not a big problem if you get dark gaps as most fires are dark at the bottom where the fuel is, it adds to the depth with the dark shadows next to the bright bits. The second coat of white is more important for the exterior bits as you need them nice and bright, don't worry about the deep recesses. Next is Bad Moon Yellow as it is a very white yellow colour. I paint this on but again don't get it into every gap as some white bits are good, BUT every layer after white has to be more prevalent the higher you get up the flame. So don't worry about white showing low down in the hotter bits of the fire, but ensure there is only a few higher up in the cooler flames. Next roughly drybrush golden yellow, then flaming orange and blood red in diminishing amounts. So you get white/yellow at the bottom, golden yellow, orange, red at the top - of each flame, even the little ones. Sometimes the red can look too dark for those of us who like to do highlights at the top of things, a very light drybrush of blazing orange can fix this. Now go back and clean up all the bits where the DP's clawed toes and the rock he's standing on are on fire!
Anyone like to finish this off with an easy way to do dynamic lighting on the model/base? I tried this on the flying ogre's burning barrel using thin washes of red, orange and yellow, looks OK but could be better.
user posted image

That's enuff for now, back with pics on Monday.
Steve
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Trip
post Oct 14 2005, 11:28 AM
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just a quick warning on using spit, GS is actually toxic and while it doesn't have any effect on some people other people can be effected. It is only an irritant so it won't do major damage but I have seen one person come down with a major headache from using spit (ie by licking his sculpting tool) others have also received an upset stomach so just be careful about licking stuff that has come into contact with GS.

Oh a nice work by the way
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estel
post Oct 14 2005, 11:40 AM
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Once Steve gets some more pics up, could we get this stickied, or even put into Insurgent (I appreciate this would need Steve's and Ben's OK)?


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Cheexsta
post Oct 14 2005, 12:01 PM
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[quote=Trip]just a quick warning on using spit, GS is actually toxic and while it doesn't have any effect on some people other people can be effected. It is only an irritant so it won't do major damage but I have seen one person come down with a major headache from using spit (ie by licking his sculpting tool) others have also received an upset stomach so just be careful about licking stuff that has come into contact with GS.

Oh a nice work by the way[/quote]
Easy solution: spit in a jar biggrin.gif

Ahem. Nice tutorial Steve. Maybe some pics of each of the stages would help?
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SteveFirth
post Oct 14 2005, 12:10 PM
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Yeah pics are a must, so now I want some ideas!
What do I set alight next!
NB: As much as I'd like to do a burning Land Raider I probably won't.

And for the record I spit in an old GW blister, I think licking brushes is wrong, I aint going to lick my dissection tool.
Steve
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WarPuppy
post Oct 14 2005, 01:22 PM
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Very nice work

Burning barrels just remind me of DOOM for some reason though...


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Diesel
post Oct 14 2005, 02:12 PM
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Mate thanks heaps for sharing biggrin.gif

Some really cool stuff.

Might have to attempt some flameage on some Immolators biggrin.gif

Cheers

Tony
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pancreasboy
post Oct 14 2005, 02:18 PM
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What about someone's hair on fire (MJ style)?

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Jimmy
post Oct 14 2005, 09:48 PM
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awesome tutorial mate, this is wonderful as I am about to sculpt some flames for an upcoming project.


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Bishop
post Oct 14 2005, 09:54 PM
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Thanks Steve. Looking forward to the pics but I get the drift.

Cheers
Mark tongue.gif


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SteveFirth
post Oct 17 2005, 02:30 PM
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Picture time!
I decided the best thing to demonstrate fire making was a couple of vehicle destroyed markers.
user posted imageuser posted image
In hindsight I should have made them from an extra vehicle hatch, they would have fit my predator better biggrin.gif

The first thing to do is make the armature, pretty simple for some leaping flames. To help hold the wire upright and add weight I used some Selly's Knead it to pack the under side of a base. Think about how you want the fire to look and place the wire appropriately. Here I have the tallest wire in the middle and the height reduces as it gets to the edge. The wires are close together which really helps bulk-up the flames. Bend the wire to recreate the zig-zag nature of flame.
user posted imageuser posted image
Next comes the bottom layer of GS, lay a line of GS around the wires. (If you don't want to use the packed base this is also a good way to hold the wire in place as it does not stick well just in a base, superglue the wire in then do the bottom layer of GS, wait for it to cure before going on with the rest of it.) Once the GS is down squish it flat with the end of a pencil, file, whatever.
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I'll do the tallest flame first as it's the hardest to get to and doing it later may destroy the edge bits. Roll out some GS, jam it down the middle wire and press the bottom firmly onto the GS base.
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With the pointy tool horizontal, stab the GS and draw it upward until it tears away.
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Here's the bit I ripped off on the end of the point, jam the bit onto the side of the main body to become a secondary flame.
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Repeatedly stab and draw up the GS, big bits and little bits to make a range of flaring shapes.
user posted image
The smaller flames are done the same way, press the GS down firmly over the wires, then draw it back up.
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The other three wires were done the same way, the edge looked too bare so I rolled another bit of GS around the outside and set to with the point stabbing and dragging.
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That's all there is to it, stab and drag the GS around until you're happy with it, if it doesn't look good press it all down and start again. To get the GS to go up a wire when it has been pulled away just twirl the point around in GS and drag it around the wire again. Swirling shapes are great for flames as well but make sure you have a variety of shapes, swirls can be too round. Don't take the GS too high off the wire as it gets fragile and it looks bad when broken off.
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Bishop
post Oct 18 2005, 10:13 AM
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Awesome Steve! tongue.gif
And thanks for the detailed pics, it really makes your instructions a lot clearer.

Cheers
Mark tongue.gif


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wraith
post Oct 29 2005, 07:50 AM
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excelent work dude!. they all look bloddy amazing ('specialy the bloodthirster:p)

'catch
-andrew
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Deathwing_Master
post Oct 29 2005, 08:14 AM
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Bloody execellent Steve, thanks for the step by step mate.


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straylight
post Oct 29 2005, 01:11 PM
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thanks again steve......the pics have made it much clearer......


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Krefey
post Oct 29 2005, 03:32 PM
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ooooo, that makes my age old ambition of covnerting up a particular old special character more appealing now. Whenever I thought about doing it, I got stuck on the issue of how to make the flames.


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Lord Krieg
post Feb 22 2006, 07:44 PM
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[quote]ooooo, that makes my age old ambition of covnerting up a particular old special character more appealing now[/quote]
Who was the Special Character?


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