Season of Scenery Stuff! (1)

With only a couple of weeks left for the Season of Scenery challenge to run I thought it was maybe about time I got some stuff finished, pictures taken and posts written! The (1) in the post title is a trick to make people think there might be more posts to follow! I should maybe warn you that there are no pictures of any of Barbara’s decoupage projects featured though in case you want to stop reading now (she’s busy planning her autumn, Halloween, winter and Christmas projects)!

The first two scenery items featured for the challenge are shown above, a 20mm scale French cottage and a pig pen to go with it! These weren’t the first two items finished for this year’s challenge but they’re a good place to start with the posts. I got the cottage from the Battlescale Wargames Buildings shop on eBay in the UK and it is really nice!. It comes as a two-piece resin model and is very good quality, with no blowholes or faults in it at all! It is heavy for its size since the roof section is solid. My only criticism was that the end walls of the upper half didn’t quite match the lower half (about 0.5mm short at each end) so there was a noticeable horizontal line on each end wall when it was put together (I don’t really like lift-off roofs for buildings unless it makes them easier for me to store). I remedied this by covering the areas with Vallejo stone effect paste and matching this to the pattern already moulded into the cottage walls. This was an easy fix and I’d still rate this model as 10 out of 10!

I painted it using my usual method for white/light coloured buildings – acrylic off-white for the walls with a thinned Humbrol enamel Chocolate coat over that, with the latter then removed while damp with white spirit to leave it looking grubby and shaded! Before the wash I’d painted the woodwork in Vallejo Dark Sea Grey and the exposed stonework in Cork Brown. The roof was in Humbrol 27 Sea Grey, drybrushed in a lighter grey after the wash (which didn’t really shade it that well). Overall I’m pretty pleased with how it turned out! After my last Franco-Prussian wargame I decided I’d like a few more buildings and this one fits in well!

The picture above shows the rear of the cottage and the pig pen. I hate to admit it, but the pig pen has sat on my hobby board on my desk since before COVID! It was even based, primed and base-coated and still it never got finished, even during last year’s Season of Scenery challenge, so now was the time to get it done! I can’t remember who makes the model but it comes as a nice single piece moulding. I based it on mounting board (card edges to building bases are much more resilient to knocks I find) and then added Vallejo white pumice around the edges for texture. I painted it various colours to represent wood and rusty corrugated iron and then gave it the brown overpaint/wash treatment. I glued some cut down broom bristles and model railway reeds on the base to represent straw and hay and then added scatter grass in patches around the base. I’m happy with it and it should fit in quite well for any European setting.

Hopefully the next scenery post will feature some of my new Paraguayan War scenery!



  1. Looking great, John! What scale are these? I’ve been looking some appropriately scaled 28mm dogs to match with the Frostgrave minis and you just got me to thinking I should maybe check out some historical stuff to see if there is anything that matches. Ok, partly because when you said “pig pen”, I wanted to see the pigs in there too, haha!

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  2. Here’s something I never thought I would say. That is a great looking pigpen! You did a great job with both of these pieces of terrain, John, and it was a wise move keeping the focus on your hard work for this update as well πŸ˜‰

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    • Thanks Nicolas! πŸ™‚ I thought they looked good together, but since both fit with the style of other buildings I’ve got I can mix and match. I have a feeling that I might have a 20mm pig, goat and sheep somewhere that I got as a freebie from Irregular Miniatures!

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    • Thanks mcmattila! πŸ™‚ Glad you like them! I think sometimes my white rendered buildings look a bit too grubby, but they’d look wrong if they were too clean. I may make a separate base for the cottage to sit on with some bushes and bits scattered about so it doesn’t look too lonely (I tend to make separate bases for some buildings as they’re easier to store that way)! Hope all’s fine with you! πŸ™‚

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  3. Excellent work on both John, you’ve achieved a very natural feel to both, and the added protection for your scenery is well thought out.
    As for the number you do have at least 10 days left so you may get a 2 yet ! LOL

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    • Thanks Dave! πŸ™‚ I’m honestly hoping for another two posts! Stuff is painted, and even varnished, so I just need to get some photos taken and posted! I feel like I’ve stayed focused and got a lot done this time round, although that is partly due to the fact that some of the buildings were at least built during last year’s challenge.

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  4. Excellent work! Both are lovely pieces. The cottage is really nice. I was excited for a new model until I saw it was 20mm. Lol. I’m intrigued by the enamel wash method. I keep reading about it, but haven’t tried it yet. It looks rreally good on this model, so I think I need to give it a try.

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    • Thanks Harry, glad you like them! πŸ™‚ To be honest I’m lucky finding a new resin model in 20mm, since 15/18mm and 28mm seem to predominate these days, but there increasingly more good quality scenery items being 3D printed now (some nice ones at, OK it’s in the UK but gives you an idea – I’ve bought the French roadside garage in 20mm and it’s really nice).
      I have little luck with washes on figures but I can usually get enamel ones to work on vehicles and scenery. Basically I thin some brown paint on a mixing tray so it’s thin but still covers well and then paint the model in it. I’ll then maybe wait a short time until it looks like it might be starting to dry and I’ll use a brush with white spirit or turpentine and gently wipe that over the model. I’ll then repeat the process with the dampened brush over smaller areas, using it to remove paint and leave recesses shaded or the surface looking a bit grubby. The trick is to take off a bit at a time so it gradually gets lighter and reveals more of the paint underneath. On the cottage I almost got it too clean in some areas but it looks fine I think. I learnt from experience that if you try this on plastic tank models the roadwheels eventually fall of, but it usually works on metal and resin models (although some resins don’t like enamels and the paint won’t dry unless you use an acrylic primer first). If you thin the paint too much and just go for a shaded appearance in crevices the wash may not look all that good, it just takes practice and even I still get it wrong from time to time!

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    • Thanks ToT! πŸ™‚ The pig pen has literally sat on my board in front of me for two and a half years, occasionally moving about to make room for other items that have jumped into the painting queue in front of it! Shocking! But I’m pleased its done ’cause it’s a nice little piece!

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  5. Lovely work on both the building and the pigpen! I think you got the weathering just about right; getting the correct look between too clean and absolutely filthy can be a pain, but you nailed it!

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  6. Very nicely done mate, lovely paintwork on both, we all have “items of shame” littered about our painting areas, that have been half finished and discarded for too long! (it doesn’t make it right though 😁).

    Cheers Roger.

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