WS plaster coloring kit

Discussion in 'Photos & Videos' started by ddavidv, Apr 3, 2004.

  1. ddavidv

    ddavidv Member

    I started playing around with staining my rocks and general scenery today. It takes a little getting used to, but I'm getting the colors I want. It raises a few questions though for those who have used the concentrated stains (I forget what the kit is called).
    1) Do you use it over all the plaster scenery or just rocks and outcroppings you want to detail? Seems like it would take forever to do the entire scenery base...I was planning on painting the balance with a flat enamel.
    2) In their how-to video, WS states that the coloring will fade if it isn't sealed with some probably-expensive "adhesive". Is there an alternative I can spray on it? Dullcoat? Hair spray? Ostrich phlegm? :p
    3) some of the 'high' points and tips of my rocks are still almost white. If I seal the colors I have now and go back over it with the stain will it cover this, or do I need to do a bit of painting to touch it up?
    Overall I'm pretty pleased. Yet another new technique and product to adapt to.
  2. I used WS's "Earth Pigments" just for rocks and outcroppings. For the rest of the scenery base, I use Sculptamold that I have mixed with dilute latex paint. As for fading, I haven't noticed it to be a problem, and I have some rocks at the front of my layout (along Millers Creek, for those who remember the photos) that I stained with the WS colors about 5 years ago. I did not seal them with anything, and they're right under a pair of fluorsecent tubes, so I guess the pigments are holding up.

    The main problem I have with them is that the concentrates will dry up even in a well sealed bottle :mad: over time. And the diluted "working solution" has a shelf life of only about a year or so. Given the expense of a 4-ounce bottle of the WS product, I decided to go back to making my own scenery stains from acrylic tube paints (I use Liquitex) and water. It works just as well, doesn't cost any more than the WS pigments, and the pigments don't dry out in the tube.

    With regard to your third question, my guess is that you probably need to do your touch up staining before sealing the colors/castings. But I don't know for sure. It might be worth experimenting with on some scrap or broken castings first.
  3. shamus

    shamus Registered Member

    I have always used Acrylic water based paints for all my rockwork; I use an earth colour first to give some texture to the rock (Letting this dry off) it is followed by a dry brush highlight of white and various other colours such as oxide red mixed with yellow ochre to give a slight brownish tint followed later on with various black/browns in crevasses and then a further highlight with white. When this has dried, I spray over everything (Grass and all) Indian ink/water wash one teaspoon ink to 1 pint water with a touch of washing up liquid.

    (Giving my secrets away :D)


  4. ddavidv

    ddavidv Member

    Yup, it's the pigment set.
    Any idea what I can spray on to seal it? I may try Dullcote on my test part to see what it does.
    Thanks for letting me know the stuff has a shelf life. If I don't use it all I'll pass the remainders along to someone else.
  5. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Shelf life

    Last month, I opened a box of WS pigments that had been sitting for years, or decades. Fully factory sealed, most of them were solid lumps in the jars.

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