Tuesday 21 July 2015

Problems Making Papier Mâché Wargaming Hills

papier mâché wargaming hills

I enjoy making objects out of papier mâché. Masks, hexagons, walls, hills. I made these two hills about 6 years ago. I like the way they look but unfortunately they don’t work well as hills in a wargame. They are 3,50 cm high and have a smooth surface. Figures slide down or fall off.

papier mâché wargaming hill

Now I’m working on a hill that’s much flatter. It’s 1,50 cm high. I can’t make it flatter, I think. Then it wouldn’t look like a hill any more. It would look like a piece of area terrain.

Making a hill from papier mâché might not be the best idea, but as I said I like the material. It’s my favorite material. It’s my intention to make a hill that lies flat on the tabletop board. Unfortunately, each time I apply a layer of paper to a papier mâché object with wallpaper paste, the object changes its form while the paper dries. So it takes a long time to make a papier mâché hill that lies flat on the floor, possibly forever if you want a perfect hill.

papier mâché wargaming hill work in progress

I started to make this hill 2 or 3 years ago. In January I said to myself: Ok, two years are a long time to make a papier mâché hill. I have to finish this project now. I have to change my technique.

papier mâché wargaming hill work in progress

So I thought about ways to stabilize the object and applied a layer of Milliput, a self-hardening modeling clay which can be carved and sanded. This works a bit better but the hill still changes its form when it dries.

papier mâché wargaming hill work in progress

Maybe you think: Whatever. These are hobby problems. Not really important in a time when our environment is changing rapidly, reminding some of us of the big changes that happened 65 million years ago and lead to the extinction of dinosaurs.

clay dino

Or you experienced problems making papier mâché hills yourself and can offer some advice on solving them?

I hope I can finish the hill soon. And start three more.