Malifaux- Swamp Bases

I've been meaning to take some time and learn how to make some swampish bases based on this tutorial that I found on Terrain Thralls.
If you ever want to learn to make a good swamp base, check that site out. They are amazing.

I also asked my friend over on Grim Dark South for some advice on his Dark Eldar bases. I'm sure if he ever updates that blog of his, you'd be able to see how good his bases are.
Then I spent a good 3 days preparing myself. Having never created bases by hand except for a couple really bad (in hindsight) gravel bases, I was extremely nervous. I would hate to ruin my gremlins by creating monstrosities to pin them on.

It is a lot of pictures so I'll ask for your forgiveness in advance.

 Remember, I followed the tutorial I found pretty much word for word. I'm not going to explain it very much because the author did a much better job than I ever could.
Biggest thing I work on in the beginning was cutting out the water portions and sealing the bottoms with sheet styrene and making sure to glue the rocks down before tossing the sand on top.

 A few of the water sections, space permitting, I tossed in a few bits and pieces I had left over from various sources. Just to spice things up a bit.
The barrel is tossed upside down, like it was spilled in by accident.

Various body parts are chopped up zombie bits from GamesWorkshop.
 Be careful if you cut out portions to create space for water effects. If you don't create a perfect seal and partition off exactly where you want the water to go, it'll either require a lot more than you want to use or it will spill out everywhere.

 For the first base coat of paint, I had to really water down my browns. The sand and rocks had a lot of little crevasses that just didn't seem to want to take in paint.
It took forever to dry and several of them required a second coat.
I'm very very impatient.

 Poor zombies, I never did get to use you like I wanted...Until now! Mwahaha!  The only good zombie is a dismembered and mutilated one.

I painted the bottoms of all my water bases dark green and swirled a little blue to give it some color.  I may have used a bit too much blue and didn't thin out the paint enough. Rather than a swampish feel, it's a bit brighter than I'd like.
Still looks good though. Very pretty.

Most of my finished water bases before any other additions.
I did my best to change up the look and size of the water portions, but there is only so much room on a 30mm base.
They turned out better than I thought they would though.

After about 4 layers of dry brushed browns, from darkest to brightest, I was finally ready to glue the grass on. Note for the future, white glue dries INCREDIBLY slow and if you plan on doing these, don't do them one at a time.
I had a dead brown grass and a lively green one that I mixed together and it creates a much more realistic looking patches. Beware of the fact that the crap gets everywhere and sticks to everything. Don't sneeze!

Close up of the large pig base. I tried to glue grass in small patches and even went "off base" in several of them. It's supposed to give it a larger than life feel, as if it belongs to a bigger picture, rather than confined to a small 30mm piece of plastic.
Does it work? I'm not sure, I'm not the best person to ask, but it still looks good, so it doesn't hurt to do it.

I started adding some tall grass that I got at Hobby Lobby. Woodland scenics makes some great terrain flock, trees, and grasses. For about 4 dollars, I have enough long grass to create a life time of bases. I did up 43 bases and barely touched the amount I bought. Less than 5% is a conservative guess.
The bridges are made from balsa wood and plastic strips. Be careful with balsa wood if you work with it. Very flimsy and doesn't take kindly to having any sort of force applied to it.

When you glue the grass down, watch out, it tends to lean or spread out before you are ready for it.  It takes some getting used to, but you should be able to get it to stablize itself and let it dry without any babysitting.
Cutting the grass is easy, getting it to look naturally grown and not perfectly landscaped is not.

Eventually these are going to be my mosquito bases. I haven't touched them yet as I'm still not sure what to paint them, but the signs should be a good place to pin them.
I just need to remember that Balsa wood is terrible at pinning without being stupidly careful.
I foresee ruined signs and lots of cussing in the future.

I used a Micros Pen to write the words. I tried to paint them on, but I couldn't keep the letters roughly the same size and I kept spacing them too far apart.
This way, my bad handwritting can be passed off as bad gremlin english.

Finally finished them all in about 3 days. I think it was roughly 5 hours a day after work. I'm glad my wife tolerates my bad husbanding as I ignore my family for hours at a time as I obsess over my project.
She's the best.

15 hours of work for 43 bases.  Not too bad I guess. I think I could go faster now, but it would shave off that much time.

I was in a rush to play a game of Malifaux, so I forgot to take a picture of my finished water bases. Here's a base with my 2nd Warpig.
I didn't use modelling water effects, but some cheap stuff I found in the plant display isle at Wal-Mart.
It's basically clear resin that I pre-mix and pour carefully.  It takes up to 48 hours to dry and is extremely cheap. $7 dollars for a massive amount.

The downside is that if you glue any grass where the water will touch as you are pouring it in, it will soak into the grass, pool where you don't want it to be and spill out all over your desk. I had to chip about 10 bases free and refill spots where the resin literally climbed up and out of the base.

See the grass on the bottom? It was meant to be dry. It doesn't look bad, in fact it's great because it gives it a nice wet look that swamp area should have. It was just unintentional and made an impossible to clean up mess.

The total cost of creating all these bases, not including the time required was probably about $25.  I had to buy sand, pebbles, various grasses and the water effects. I didn't even come close to using up any of my materials, so technically if you ignored start up costs, I used pennies worth of materials.

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