Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Radio Frente de Liberación Nacional

I always enjoy having appropriate music for my painting and gaming.  As such, I have created another Spotify radio station.  Here is Golfonseca's own Radio Frente de Liberación Nacional.  Power to the people and death to the tyrant Somoza!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

15mm Central American/Caribbean Paper Church Kit

I have been looking for a 15mm church model for my Golfonseca AK47 village, but have had no luck with 15mm and HO scale producers.  Everything is either no longer in production or isn't quite the style I want. However, last night I stumbled across a free paper craft kit for a Spanish church at this website:

The kit design is credited to Ángel Agustín and Jesús Arribas.  While a nice looking kit, there are a few issues for my need:
  • The images are only 96DPI resolution. While this is fine for a monitor, you are better off printing at 300DPI or higher.
  • The textures are rather flat and wouldn't blend well with my 3D painted models.
  • During my discussions on LAF, I learned that stone is not commonly found in Central American churches. Instead, most everything is adobe and stucco.
  • Not sure if this is going to be sturdy enough for wargaming.
Since this was looking like my best church option, I decided to use Photoshop to resize and retexture the kit. I found a nice 300DPI adobe texture photo on Google Images and used the magic wand and clone stamp tool to redo the wall textures and cover up the stones. The only part that didn't work well was on the very top of the tower, as the texture obliterated the architectural details. Instead, I used an adobe brick pattern at 50% opacity to try to disguise the stone as bricks.
Adobe wall texture and adobe brick overlay
 As such, the final result isn't completely correct for an average Central American church, but it would drive me insane trying to clean up this section pixel by pixel. 

As a final bit of detailing, I muted the colors on the roof tiles and used some wood texture on the doors to make them look a bit more realistic.

The original kit seemed slightly large for 15mm miniatures, and was also organized for printing on large sheets of paper. I decided to shrink the kit down to 80% of original and reorganized the pieces to fit onto to 11"x17" paper.

I just finished the reworking of the kit tonight, so have not had a chance to start building and check the durability. However, if you would like to try the modified kit yourself, I am linking to the JPEG pages HERE (warning: they are huge files). EDIT 01Oct13: Page 5 was missing the bell tower roof - it has now been added.

Once I have a chance to perform a test build, I'll prepare a follow up entry on the blog.

Mr. Agustín and Mr. Arribas, if you come across this modification to your kit, I hope you are OK with me distributing it.  If not, please do not hesitate to contact me.