Making Pengwen bases

Stuff I used:
1. Soft Snow Flake from Woodland Scenics
2 Ink in the colour Process Cyan
3 Titanium White Heavy Body Acrylic
4 Modeling Paste
5 Distress Crackle Paint in the color Clear Rock Candy from Ranger/Tim Holtz
6 Iridescent Medium
7 Water
8 Small crystals
9 Transparent very thin and very slow drying glue

First I make sure the base is as white as possible. Then I add a big ‘dollop’ of the Crackle Paint (this can often be found in scrapbook shops, let me know if you want a link). The higher/thicker the ‘dollop’ is, the bigger the crack pieces will be. Give it plenty of time to dry. There are other brands of ‘crackle paint’, like GW has some stuff too (not transparent though, I think). But my absolute favourite for ice is this one.

I dilute the blue ink heavily with water. It’s at least half and half, if not more water. I really don’t like GW’s Drakenhof Nightshade or Army Painters Blue Tone for this. They’re both too ‘black-ish’ in tone. But I think you could use Guilliman Blue Glaze from GW if you have it.

As soon as the ink is applied I wipe it off with some paper towel, so it’s more or less ‘only’ down in the cracks. Depending on the base it will seep a little underneath the crackle paint as well. I like that. It adds some ‘depth’ to it.

Then a good, somewhat heavy, drybrush Titanium White.

Time to get the pengies on the base. I have to do this now, since they have a little ‘base’ around their feet, and I need to ‘build’ around this for the next step.

Add the modeling paste, using an old brush to push it around. I build this up, so it’s matching in height with the base around pengis feet and also so it looks like it’s a thick layer lying around the ice. This is also when I push down some of the crystals if I want any on the base. A tiny spot of the transparent glue on the bottom of the crystal, and that and the modeling paste should be enough to keep it in place once everything has dried.

I then soften and ‘sculpt’ the paste with a brush dipped in water. This now needs to dry completely.

Dabbing some iridescent medium on top of the ice to give it some ‘sparkle’.

I apply Titanium White to a brush as if were to drybrush, but instead of dragging the brush back and forth, I dab it on top of the ice, so I trap the ‘sparkles’ below a soft layer of white. I also paint a layer of the same white on top of the dry modeling paste, since it has a slight yellow sheen to it when dry. And that looks really stark and ‘wrong’ when the flock is added.

I mix the glue with water so it’s really watery. I need this to ‘seep’ through the flock.

I then sprinkle over the flock, tapping off the excess. Then let it sit for a little while, waiting for the water/glue to kinda ‘seep’ through it. Which I hope the picture shows. Once it’s soaking the flock for good I add a second layer on top. And done

I forgot a step…when I am all done adding the snow flock on top of the modeling paste, I add a thin layer of glue to the edge of the ice next to the paste and add a tiny amount of snow flock tehre as well. It gives a better transition and looks like some of the snow has blown onto the ice(edited)

Basing Material

Shamelessly copied @avernos idea of premixing basing material. Normally I like to fiddle around and make the bases somewhat ‘unique-ish’. But with this many figures needing colors and basing, I wanted a quick and easy way to apply that. So here’s what I did:

  • I didn’t have fine sand in the right color. So mixed some Warlord’s Desert Sand with Army Painters Werewolf Fur and a tiny bit of Cultist Robe. And left that to dry overnight
  • Years ago I raided the local playground for sand (this has been baked at quite a high temperature for, I think 3 hours, to make it as ‘clean’ as possible). Added a little bit of this into the colored Desert Sand, to add some rougher textures. Did what I could to avoid the ‘bigger stones’. For 15mm they quickly look huge.
  • Dropped in a fair bit of 4Grounds Spring Static Grass.
  • Since I want this to have a sprintime/early summer feel, I also added in some Flower Soft*. This isn’t a product I’ve seen all that much in the Wargaming Community. But it is used in scrapbooking and card making world. It’s essentially blended up, colored foam. So you could make it yourself. I just find it easier to buy, since it comes in a huge variety of colors. For this project I used a mix of whites, reds, oranges and greens. As a side note, adding glue to the top of your tufts and dipping it in flower soft, is an easy way to add flowers for your 28mm figures,
  • Last, before applying the mix to the bases, I coated the base in Vallejo’s European Mud. So if my mix doesn’t cover completely, the ground doesn’t look ‘off’.

*You can get flower soft of Ebay, from various craft stores etc. If you’re completely lost, here’s a link to an american store: But I would suggest you do a quick google search and see if there isn’t a store near you selling this, if you’d like to try it out.

Below is the end result, neatly tucked away in a little tub.