Over the years I have made a lot of custom terrain and repeatedly return to the need for fields and crops for use in different periods and scales. Last year I made some small fields using thin MDF and brown plumbers caulk. They looked quite good but I have since found that their small size, and rigid nature, makes using them difficult, especially on my small table. I started toying with the idea of making some larger, more flexible fields a long time ago, but I have finally got round to making some ploughed fields using brown corduroy fabric as my base material.
The fabric I bought came on a 1.5m wide roll so a 1m offcut gave me enough material to make 20 reasonably large fields for my games, more than enough to cover my modest games table, but also suitable for bigger games at Reject HQ.
Once cut to size the fields were given a simple three-step makeover to finish them:
- Although the material was called chocolate brown it had a bit of a purple undertone to it so I sprayed all the fields using Amy Painter Leather Brown.
- When this dried I gave the ridges a very light drybrush of sandstone from a tester pot of household emulsion paint. This has to be done sparingly, just enough to highlight the ridges. Try not to be too even with this, it looks better if some areas are lighter than others because real ground is rarely even and monotone when you look at it. Slight depressions will look darker than better-drained lumps and bumps.
- Then I added a few turf patches to some of the ridges. This looks a bit like grass growing in patches on the untended field. I used a large flat brush to apply the PVA to the ridges, using a very light drybrush-like stroke to get the PVA only on the ridges. The turf I then scattered on only adhered lightly and, after shaking, only a little bit remained glued in place. The result looks like sparse weeds growing in areas of deeper soil, or where the drainage is better.