Above is a pic of Lt. Colonel James Galbraith, Regimental Colour in hand, alongside Bobbie the regimental dog and some of the other "Last Eleven" survivors of the 66th (Berkshire) Regiment, making their last stand in one of the walled gardens just South of Khig village, a few miles West of the Afghan town of Maiwand.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Greener waters

Well, after living with the results of my first round paint-job on the Logar River for a couple of days, I came to the inescapable conclusion that though it looked good, the color was just too blue and not enough green for my purposes.

Going by the photographic evidence there are in fact rivers in Afghanistan that do have water as blue as what I'd painted, but neither the Logar nor the Kabul River, at least in the area around Charasiab, qualify, and I'd always imagined them being finished with a more green/brown hue.  My expectation is that I'll be adding a tint of BROWN ink to the Envirotex resin I plan to pour into the riverbed, so I'd hoped to get more of a GREEN look for this paint job.

Unfortunately, the "Olive Green" Winsor & Newton acrylic was the only color I bought that didn't come close to matching its swatch on the exterior of the tube.  But I didn't let that stop me.  I mixed up my own olive drab river water color, using YELLOW OCHRE with some BLACK and just a touch of BLUE for good measure...

And finally, a side-by-side comparison...


Though personally I prefer the green finish to the blue, I admit the blue has a bit more of a watery "sheen," but since the surface will be covered with hi-gloss resin, that shouldn't be a problem when it's all done.

Sometimes it's funny how things work out.  Now that I've painted the "bottom" of my first river channel, I must admit that if I hadn't already bought a container of EnviroTex clear resin a couple of months ago... I would be vey sorely temped to just opt for some Acrylic Gloss Medium and turn my "riverbed" into the river surface.  I'm very pleased with the coloring and my go-to texturing material Elmer's Wood Filler -- which I only used because it was handy and what I always use for sealing foam before I paint it -- has given the finish of the river channel a sense of movement which I think fits well with a river fed by mountain runoff such as the Logar and Kabul Rivers are.  I could just coat it with the glossy medium, applying it in a manner that would add just a bit more "choppiness" to the surface, highlight the top edge of the "raging waters" near the rocks with just a touch of white paint, and be done.

However, having already spent about $40.00 on a jug of EnviroTex, and having hollowed-out the riverbeds to a substantial 1" depth... I think I will have to proceed with my original plan.  My concern is... I like the color so much now, I don't want it to be lessened in any way by the addition of the resin.  I had always planned to make the first pour a clear one, with no tinting whatsoever.  I've read that doing it that way creates a greater sense of depth after you add a second, color-tinted, pour, and perhaps more pours after that, with an eye towards building up the thickness of the "water."

What I really need to do now is build a quick and dirty -- and TINY -- mock-up of my channel and test some different color tints in the resin pours.

Wish me luck, and I'll try to keep you posted with any progress...


  1. If you're not happy you need to change it while you can, you'd only regret not doing once the resin had gone on. Very excited about the next stage!

  2. If you were to ask me, I reckon the greener looks the more natural somehow(?).

    Great stuff as per usual and keep up the inspirational work.

    Oh, and thanks for all the assistance you have given me of late- very much appreciated.


  3. thank you for taking the time to leave your positive comments! As always they are very much appreciated.

    Darrell, you are very welcome, and it's my pleasure to be able to be helpful when it comes to something I enjoy as much as our mutual interest in recreating this period in miniature.

    Willie, I hear you my friend, as I'm very excited about the next stage too!

    1. It's actually a 'period' that I've been looking at doing for a long time but what really spurred me on was the new Artizan NWF range and a short e-mail conversation with mike the sculptor (all in confidence I'm afraid). The main problem I see me having is finding the correct limbers and some of the guns (I think on both sides) etc. Castaway arts and some of the old Foundry Indian range with certainly do for baggage as I want the armies to eventually look like two real armies. Still haven't decided upon which battle to focus on. Curently reading Maiwand, The Last Stand of the 66th Berkshire Regiment in Afghanistan, 1880, Richard J. Stacpoole-Ryding and have just put down The March to Kandahar which, as i'm sure you know focuses on Roberts. Darrell.

  4. Very well done terrain. I have been inspired by your work for a number of months now and truly enjoy seeing the finished product.

    Thanks for sharing

  5. You are a perfectionist with your hobby and it shows. Looking forward to the next instalment.