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Painting Brickwork

PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 3:01 pm
by markyb208
Hi All,

I would like to know peoples' techniques for painting brickwork and stonework etc., or more specifically, the mortar/cement. I can't believe it's a case of painting it all in, is there a way of using a wash for instance?

Grateful for any advice.

Regards,

Mark

Re: Painting Brickwork

PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 4:57 pm
by PeteScR
Hi Mark,
The way I do it is as follows.
Brickwork style and appearance can be very regional and specific to time frames etc, so there is no generic "brickwork".
The other thing is that it is never perfect. The best thing to do is to research the bricklaying style "Flemish Bond" etc for the model and also get some representative reference shots of the age of the buildings to see what it should look like in a weathered condition or if a specific type of brick was used. For example the London area has completely different styles and bricks to that of the Midlands and Scotland.
Whenever I have had to represent brickwork my technique has been as follows.

Wet the plasticard with water and a little washing up liquid to release any grease on the surface then roughly dry it. Make up an acrylic wash of off-white , cream or whatever appearance yo want your mortar to be. With the aid of a smallish paint brush just touch the wash onto the surface of the damp plasticard and let capillary action draw the mortar around the card. This will take a few touches depending on the area. Leave aside to dry then if necessary just lightly rub with fine emery to make the brick faces clean, remember it doesnt need to be perfect.

I then use three artists pencils (Derwent Studio) , not paint, to do the brickwork. I first rub over the brick faces with "Madder Carmine" which is the base brick colour. I then give a light rub with "Deep Vermilion" but lighter than the first pencil. This can be done all over uniform or selective, its your choice once you see the colour forming. I then use "Ivory Black" selectively to pick out some bricks or groups of bricks.
Uniformity is not the goal, and remember, it is common place to see the mortar "weeping" out down the brick faces. Again pictures are invaluable.

I hope this helps, good luck.
Pete

Re: Painting Brickwork

PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 5:07 pm
by Jim S-W
Hi Mark

I paint the brick colour fist then when very dry (a week) I do the mortar. My method is to wash the wall first in thinner then mix the mortar colour in on the model This way the mortar isnt identical throughout.

HTH

Jim

Re: Painting Brickwork

PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 5:22 pm
by Clive
Hi Mark

My method is to paint the model buliding a suitable mortar colour first. Let it dry. I then lightly dry brush the brick colour on until I get the desired effect. As I cannot get a consistant covering due to my own inability, the finished model can look quite realistic as no brick company can get all its bricks the same colour. :) :)

Re: Painting Brickwork

PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 9:34 pm
by Richard Oldfield
Hi Mark,

Welcome to the forum. You may be about to find out just how many different techniques there can be. :)

For the extensive stone retaining wall at the Chester end of Mostyn's recent extension we used the following technique:-

1. Fill in any cracks and gaps with Superfine Milliput
2. Prime all surfaces (we used Halfords cellulose-based grey primer well thinned down - not for any special reason but I had some available).
3. Apply base coat - this needs to be a fair bit lighter than the final colour you desire because of the 'dirt' washes that will be applied later. I used a mix of old enamel paints that were getting 'old in the tooth' and not worth using on stock.
4. Apply basic dirty coat (to seep into mortar courses and stone surfaces) - I used a mix of brown and black Vallejo acrylic paints very thinned down.
5. Pick out individual stones with slightly different shades (some darker some lighter, some mixed with touches of different colours). These are Vallejo acrylics again well thinned down. This part of the job is really tedious.
6. Apply weathering coats (everything between off-white and dark grey). Again these are thinned down Vallejo acrylics. A useful technique at this stage is to apply the weathering coat with a brush and then rub over the surfaces with a finger - the weathering stays in all the crevices but comes off the proud surfaces.

I used acrylics for stages 4-6 because they dry quickly and I dont have the patience for multiple applications of slower drying paints.

Step 1 illustrated:-
This shows the task of blending in the existing retaining wall with the new extension (both in terms of geometry and colouring)
Image

Step 6 underway showing the palette of dilute acrylics used for final weathering.
Image

Process more or less complete - old and new sections blended together.
Image

Cheers,

Richard

Re: Painting Brickwork

PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2011 12:33 pm
by markyb208
Hi All,

Thank you very much indeed for your ideas and yes, it seems there are many different techniques. My layout is based in the West Midlands, I will try and research the brick types and colours and go from there.

Regards,

Mark.

Re: Painting Brickwork

PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 1:26 pm
by Butoxeter
I seem to use methods that are a mix of Jim S-W and Richard Oldfields...

I do prime the (normally Slaters) brickwork first, let that dry thoroughly, then apply the base brick colour (enamels). Like Jim, I let them dry for a long time, several days as a minimum.

I then dampen the area to have mortar applied and paint on a water-based mortar colour. Like Jim, I also tend to mix that as it's applied to the brickwork.

I let the mortar paint get touch dry, then I wipe it off the face of the bricks with a slightly damp piece of cotton. Old (clean! ;) ) handkerchiefs are useful for this!

Once the mortar is well and truely dry, the structure can be weathered.

Re: Painting Brickwork

PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 3:38 pm
by Jim S-W
Hi All

One tip I forgot. For bricks that are darker than the base colour, once everything is dry use artists markers to pick them out. Dead fast and the chisel tip is the right shape.

HTH

Jim

Re: Painting Brickwork

PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 8:09 am
by Butoxeter
Jim S-W wrote:Hi All

One tip I forgot. For bricks that are darker than the base colour, once everything is dry use artists markers to pick them out. Dead fast and the chisel tip is the right shape.

HTH

Jim

Hi Jim - any chance of a photo please - might be helpful?

Cheers.

Re: Painting Brickwork

PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 12:40 pm
by Jim S-W
Hi Tim

Marker -

Image

walls -

Image

HTH

Jim

Re: Painting Brickwork

PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 5:18 pm
by Davidb
I've been reading Geoff Taylor's new book (pub Wild Swan).

His technique involves painting the brickwork with a base colour for the bricks and leaving to dry for at least 24 hours. He then works on a small area at a time putting in the mortar course (e.g. pale stone No 121) and rubbing it off straight away with a paper towel. This tints the bricks, but, once left to dry again for 24+ hours, he then goes in for dry brushing, starting with the lighter colours and building up the darker ones on top. He suggests several colours including grey and (very sparingly) navy blue as a substitute for black.

I have not got in to buildings yet, but Geoff has been very successful!

Dai