Sunday, May 26, 2013

Custom Green Stuff Banners

This post will be about how I make large custom Green Stuff banners. Here are some examples of what I'm talking about:
As you can see in the pic above. This works for both clean, sharp banners; as well as rough and dirty looking banners.
Step one is to gather the tools you'll require. Other than what's shown in this pic, you'll also need a rolling pin, a modeling knife, super glue, and a normal house-hold scissors. Make sure that you cut the sides of the plastic bag, so that it can be laid out as one big flat piece of plastic. I cut the top off of it too.

You can see my intended recipient for the new banner in the pic above. It's going to be my Bull Ogre Maneater Standard Bearer. I extended his banner pole to make for a larger banner.
Make a big ball of Green Stuff to create the banner from. It has to be rather sizable!
Smush it up with your fingers until it's close to the size you'll need. Make sure it's done evenly.
Now add some Vaseline (petroleum jelly) to both sides of the cut up freezer bag. Then put the Green Stuff in there.
Roll the putty out till it's a bit larger than what you think you'll need. Make sure you don't roll out the putty too thin. At some point it'll get transparent, and that's not good! I made a note below about avoiding creases in the finished product. Make sure that you read through to the end of this blog before attempting this in order to avoid that issue.
I used my Color and Clay Shapers to add a wind blown effect to this banner. Depending upon the type of banner that you want to make, you can lay it over some object or another; in order to get some shape to it. I taped it all down so that it would stay put until the Green Stuff cured.
The result here was a really heavy wavy effect.
There's a size comparison against the model itself.

These banners can usually go on the model in many different ways. Here I tacked it on in a few different poses, to show you some of the options that I had.
You will effectively have four options for your banner's layout, as either side can be the top and either side can be the front. You can also tilt it to many different interesting looking angles.
Once you determine what looks best to you, shape the banner with your scissors.
Here it is tacked on, so that I could confirm the look.

Next up is to cut the banner, so that the top will look proper when it's attached to the banner pole. I had to do some serious hacking on this guy to get it to look more natural due to the extreme waviness of it. Not every banner style will require this.
This was done with a modeling knife. It's OK if it looks a bit rough, as we'll fix that later.
Time to permanently attach it. I used super glue for that.
The final step in finishing the custom banner is to add some Green Stuff to the top, to smooth over all the attachment points. In the above pic, you can see that I left some holes there for adding nails to it later. That'll help make it look like it's actually attached to the banner pole.
The Clay and Color Shaper tools are incredibly useful for this type of putty work that needs to be really smooth looking.

Here's the final piece. There's a few rough spots in the banner itself (creases from the plastic I rolled it out in). That's no biggie for a banner like this that I want to look kinda haphazard. After painting, those will not be noticeable. They can be avoided by periodically stretching the plastic as you're rolling out the banner. Also, when you're done rolling it out, stretch the plastic over it one more time, and gently roll it to remove any creases that may remain. If you do end up with a few creases like I have here, you can also scrape them with a modeling knife to help smooth them out.
Now it's time to add all of the adornments/trophies that'll go on the top of the banner. If there are a few rough spots on the top where it attaches, or where you had to hack it up a bit; you can add things that'll cover those up.

I'll post a finished pic of this fella when I'm done converting the rest of the model, so you can see the final result.


Michael Butcher said...

Nice tutorial Johnny, I will have to try it out.

Dennis G said...

Nice. I have used the rolling out the green stuff before method, but didn't think to use the brushes for the folds. Thanks for the tips.

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