The workshop - tips, tricks and tutorials.


Advanced Painting Techniques

Tutorials • 6th December, 2017 •


Antiquing Part 1: Advanced rust

1. Primer - Assuming you know what you're doing up to this point, the blaster is stripped, sanded, washed and primed with matt black. I've gone ahead and drybrushed the areas that will be gun-metal. You don't have to primer the blaster first, but it does make it easier to see what you are doing in the next step.

2. Dremel - This is the fun bit: work through each piece of the blaster that will be rusty, slowly working down through the plastic making holes in the shell. Be careful not to get to close around the screw-posts and other mounting posts as you don't want to weaken these areas too much.

3. Mask - Mask off the areas that you don't want to be rusty.

4. Matt red - Spray a light coat of matt red primer onto the blaster and allow it to dry. Meanwhile, you can prepare your salt. Table salt is too fine and regularly sized - you will need to put rock salt through a grinder in order to get a good mix of chunks. You will need about 4-5 Tablespoons - more or less depending on how rusty you want to go.

5. More matt red and salt - Spray a little of the matt red onto the rusted areas and sprinkle with salt - heavier in the really rusty areas, and lighter for the rust-speckled metal. Be sure to get all of the angles, not just the sides. Don't try to coat the whole blaster at once - work in small areas, doing a bit at a time. For the heavily salted areas, a little more paint over the salt will hold it in place. Don't get your spray-can too close to the shell, as it will blow away the salt that you have just placed.

6. Metal paint - Once the matt red is touch-dry, you can attack it with your choice of metal. Give it 2-3 coats in order to get a slight build-up around the salted areas.

7. Remove salt - When the metal paint is touch dry, you can brush away the salt. I find that a nylon-bristled brush, such as an old toothbrush, works really well here as you can use a firm pressure to take away the salt without scratching the paintwork. You can also use warm water to dissolve the salt, but be aware that this may also lift the masking tape, making it necessary to re-mask if you wish to add more layers to the rusted areas.

7a. I have also added a rust wash to dull the metal paint and fill some of the nooks and crannies that the salt doesn't get to.

Also keep in mind that step 2 is completely optional, and that you can get a great rust look without all of the divots and holes if you don't want your blaster to look too antique.


Tutorials • 6th December, 2017 •


Antiquing Part 2: Paint chipping

Note: In this tutorial, The effect I am going for is rotting leather. The colours used are different for paint chipping, but the technique is identical.

1. Base colour - Apply your base coat - in this case, mottled yellow for the old leather, but for metal parts you would use a metallic silver, aluminium or similar.

2. Apply masking fluid - Using a small piece of sponge, apply a liberal coat of masking fluid (masking fluid is basically a liquid latex) and let it dry. Be very careful handling your blaster at this point as the mask is very fragile and can easily lift if touched. If you are working with larger surfaces, you only need to apply the mask to specific edges and areas where you want paint chipping to occur, such as over the top of rust spots, exposed edges and such.

3. Rubbing the mask back - Very carefully rub the mask away from areas that you want the top coat to appear. Don't be too thorough as the spider-web bits have a nice effect on the final look. Be careful not to rub it off edges, as this is where most wear naturally occurs. Try to concentrate the rubbing to open flat areas where paint doesn't get disturbed as much. Use a pencil or a toothpick to scratch the masking away from corners and valleys where paint wouldn't be disturbed at all.

4. Top coat - Spray your preferred top coat on. - I recommend spraying as opposed to brushing as brushing may accidentally disturb the mask. Brush application can also cause the paint to creep under the mask, which is best avoided.

5. Drybrush and detail - When the top coat is dry, you can go to work drybrushing and detailing. The top coat does a good job of strengthening the mask, so you can handle it gently without any worries. Don't scrub too hard, as the mask will come away if too much pressure is applied. Similarly, be careful when masking on top of the topcoat as trying to lift and reposition the tape will definitely pull the mask up with it - you'll need to get it right first time!

6. Remove masking fluid - Once all your details are dry you can go in and remove the masking fluid - you can do this with your fingers, or if there are areas that are being a bit stubborn, you can use a soft pencil eraser. A nylon-bristled brush can also be useful for getting into tight corners too.

Important Note: Try to work as quickly as you can once the masking fluid is dry - the longer it stays on your work, the harder it can be to remove. 24 hours is the recommended maximum, so make sure to select paints with fast drying times so that you can do the top coat and detailing (and all the drying) in under a day if you can.


Tutorials • 6th December, 2017 •


Antiquing Part 3: Rust detailing

1. Tidy edges - Using the same paint as you used for your rust-red base coat, go around all of the edges of the holes and into the divots, making sure to get it everywhere that rust would normally take hold. You can use a similar technique to weathering - using a rag to wipe it away from exposed edges and making sure it gets into all of the channels and panel-lines.

2. Spot painting and spices - Using a lighter orange rust colour and a fine brush, and working on one small area at a time, brush around the hole's edges and while the paint is still wet, sprinkle a combination of nutmeg, cinnamon and paprika onto the general area - move onto the next hole, and so-on. When finished, allow it to sit undisturbed for a while while it dries.

3. Don't forget the insides - If you have holes in your shell, don't forget to do the same to the inside, but feel free to be a bit more liberal in the distribution of the rust.

4. Brushing away the excess spices - Gently brush away the excess spices with a soft, clean paintbrush.

5. Reassemble and weather-wash - Reassemble your blaster and add final details and any weathering techniques you desire to the completed blaster. Use a soft rag, or a tissue to DAB excess dyes from the rust - DON'T WIPE!

You're done! Your attractively antiqued blaster is ready!

Have fun with these tutorials, and have fun modifying them and developing your own ideas from them. I look forward to seeing how aspects of them come out in your own works in the future.