Note: This terrain project is progressing at a brisk pace, so I may be overlooking certain details that would get better coverage in a "proper" tutorial. I also haven't had time to answer any of the questions people have been asking in the comments, but please don't feel like I'm neglecting them. If you have any questions about the process or techniques, please continue to ask them in the comments section or email me, and I'll compile them into a Q&A post after the project is complete.
This week saw the the major construction on the Wrath of Kings diorama winding down, and the main tower shaping up.
With the roof shapes cut and coated with Liquid Nails, I began framing out the roof timbers. I use basswood, rather than balsa because the basswood is much sturdier, and not much more expensive. The thicker strips of basswood cover the edges of the foamcore roofs, while the thinner strips are used for the planking on the sides of the roof.
The shingles are cut from thick artboard. Each strip is 1 inch wide, with the shingles cut about halfway through. The edges of some shingle were irregularly cut to create a little variety.
These strips were glued in overlapping rows, starting at the bottom and working toward the apex of the roof. Individual shingles, cut from thinner cardboard, were folded over the corners.
The chimneys were made by cutting a square length of foam, and shaping it round on the belt sander. To add structural support, wooden skewers were pushed through the length of the chimney.
Each chimney will be cut with a stone pattern and attached to the rooftop.
I continued the rocks around the back of the city, and began constructing the tower. Like the crayon tower, this thicker tower was made by covering a tapered plastic vase with card "stones."
Here's the tower with the rocks piled up around its base and continuing on to the opposite side of the table.
With the rocks in place, I filled in the crevices with some smaller stones, using a combination of different grades of ballast and play sand.
The Main Tower
Like the other large structures, the main round tower was cut from layers of 2-inch insulation foam, and given a stone texture. The roofs were beveled and coated with Liquid Nails.
To this central mass, I gradually built up the other buildings. I'm still searching for something to use as the elemental's head, but I may end up just shaping it out of pink foam.
From overhead, you can see the layout of the paths and outer buildings. The black dots indicate where the dead trees will go.
After the last of the roof shingles are added, it will be time for the windows. I've made a few window boxes out of styrene strips and Aves Epoxy Sculpt. I'll use RTV silicone to create a mold and resin cast enough copies of the windows to fill out the buildings.