Sunday, December 8, 2013

Pottery Shop Landscaping Challenges

Before we get to the landscaping, thought you'd like to see this project as it's coming together. The roof of the pottery shop has been removed in these photos; it's made to be removed for easy viewing. In the background is the Beacon Hill. The general contractor is wondering when I'll get over there. This was supposed to be the winter of the Beacon Hill, but the pottery shop hollered louder.

The kiln is finished but for one step. Do you see the slight glare on the curved of the kiln? I painted the kiln with satin finish polyacrylic. Mistake. Kiln bricks are not supposed to be glazed. I've tried to dull the finish with washes of gray and ivory acrylic. It helps a little but not enough. I'm not sure what the step will be, so I'm moving on to the landscaping while I ponder. One thought is to powder some gray or black chalk or charcoal and gently rub it on with a fingertip. Actually, that's the only thought at the moment. Suggestions welcome!

There are some challenges with the landscaping. The lovely grass sheets have to be cut and fitted around the building and kiln. The sheets have a directional grain. The grain doesn't always run in the direction it should, which results in obvious breaks between sections. Not realistic at all. If you look at the strip to the left of the garage door you'll see what I mean.

Also, I haven't figured out how I'm going to make the driveway and walkway to the steps. I don't like the painted stone-finish paint. Another issue is the too-clean lines between grass and man made areas. The pads by the doors are bits of a plastic foam egg carton. They look like concrete pads that might lead to strips of concrete with grass between. 

One thought is to make some stones from left over terra cotta air dry clay, paint them gray and then put some white on as if they've been whitewashed, and line the driveway edges with them. I have some crumbles of green/brown flocking/foliage materials that can be put between them. If you click the next photo to enlarge, you can see a bit of the crumbly material close to the right side of the garage door. It blends well with the grass.

I had three of the oblong bushes like the one in front of the porch but needed smaller ones near the corner of the building. I cut one of the oblongs in two and glued some of the crumbles on the raw edges. I like the result.  I've saved some used coffee grounds and tea leaves for dirt and mulch. That's what is in the containers in the foreground.

Another challenge is how to indicate wear. The grass would be worn in paths from the driveway to the door and from the door to the kiln. Stepping stones? Indicate matted grass with glue & stain brownish? Or? Again, suggestions welcome!

Back to head scratching!


  1. well there is this tutorial

    I have a WW2 scene that I have to put together so I've been looking at models with dirt ..not to this extreme but you get the idea

  2. Thank you ... this gives me an idea. :)

  3. Una maravilla, me encanta.
    Un abrazo.