Coloring Pink Foam

Bfagan Feb 14, 2012

  1. Bfagan

    Bfagan TrainBoard Member

    ANy suggestions on what color and type of paint to use on pink foam before adding scenery like trees, bushes, grass, earth etc. Leaning to a green or brown. I think a latex is best. Your thoughts.
  2. MC Fujiwara

    MC Fujiwara TrainBoard Member

    Latex is best.
    After you shape the foam, use some lightweight spackle or sculpamold to fill in the layer-lines, then paint.
    If you haven't already, check out Evert's fab video tutorial on building scenery with foam on his youtube channel.

    With foam, DO NOT use solvent-based paints: they will eat the foam!
    Rule of Thumb with Foam: if the can / bottle says "Flammable: DON'T USE IT.

    I use interior flat latex paint (I like the "tuxedo" color myself, but I model Pacific Northwest and like the darker undercoat).
    Check out the mistint bin at your hardware store for cheap cans.

    Hope this helps.
  3. K's Engine & Steam Repair

    K's Engine & Steam Repair TrainBoard Member

    I found out burt unber regular caft paint or polly scale rail road tiew brown works good for covering the pink color. Thats what I use givng a nice brown surface to work with. Then I add the earth fine turf. Just my 2 cents.
  4. arbomambo

    arbomambo TrainBoard Member

    Pollyscale's "Earth" the best 'neutral' ground color....can be used under almost any ground foam, cover, etc...
    By a small bottle, then have your paint store mix a match of flat latex paint...
    don't apply it right out of the can...mix, at least. half and half with water....extends the paint, and covers can also use the paint as your intial 'glue' for some dark green or soil ground cover...just sprinkle some on as the paint is wet...
  5. RCB

    RCB TrainBoard Member

    I might also suggest, before your spackle, layer it with newspapers, papermache style. It will add rigidity if you need to nail things into it. 3 or 4 layers. This would be after your initial sculpting.
  6. Railroad Bill

    Railroad Bill TrainBoard Member

    My Home Depot offers convenient sample sizes of interior house paint that are made up from Martha Stewart's coordinated color swatches. I purchased three shades of a base color, getting nice Eastern Washington terrain effects, using the different shades as accents and highlights. Similar for rock outcroppings, selected a few likely shades. Color choices were based on looking at the terrain and rocks from the area I model. Of course, the names of these colors come from Martha. Not very railroady. Works & cheap.
  7. HOexplorer

    HOexplorer TrainBoard Supporter

    I guess I'm wondering why you would paint it? Is it because you are then going to lay down some ground foams on top? Think most of us cover our foam with plaster cloth. It smooths the edges and will take coloring well. Just wondering. Jim
  8. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    Latex, flat. An "earth" type color. Once I have my basic ground shape, those are what I use. I actually have several colors, ranging from gray to a dark brown, depending upon what I wish to create for a scene.
  9. arbomambo

    arbomambo TrainBoard Member

    These are pics of my little prop 'mesa''s shaped and carved from foam...
    there is no plaster or celluclay on it at all...just a little sand over the paint, some ground clusters glued to represent juniper bushes, and some WS and foam rocks painted and glued to represent 'talus'...that's it...
    there will be some areas on the layout that may need to be filled and slightly 'smoothed' with a dollop of celluclay here and there, but nothing major...why add something that only adds to more weight?





    I wouldn't go dark brown on painting all your foam, unless you're replicating black soil cultivated fields over your entire layout...good ol' dirt tends to be a lighter 'earth' color...adding ground foam will set your main 'tone'...and set your 'season'....the bare 'earth' will show up alongside highways, where the grass is sporadic, along river banks, etc...just look around as you drive....what are the predominant ground covers of the area you're replicating...what does the soil look like between grassy areas?
  10. dstuard

    dstuard TrainBoard Member

    The hillside behind the depot is raw blue foam painted with an earth brown flat latex. For the smoother surface I applied a light layer of drywall mud before painting.

  11. arbomambo

    arbomambo TrainBoard Member

    that's a good 'earth' color...!
  12. D&H Rick

    D&H Rick New Member

    I used cheap paint from Wal-Mart. Flat latex interior in " Rich Terra Firma"color. I had a gallon custom mixed for less than 10 dollars.
  13. Logtrain

    Logtrain TrainBoard Member

    You want cheap paint! Here's what I do. I go down to the local hardware store, ACE in my town, and get myself an earth toned mismatch paint. You can usually pick these up for a couple bucks. I think I picked up a quart for $1.25.
  14. Grey One

    Grey One TrainBoard Supporter

    Couple of ideas dependent on how much time / disposable income you may have.
    Latex - for sure as a base coat
    If disposable income is an issue:
    Before buying a specific shade check the "oooops", (mixes that did not meet the customer's expectations), area. Go with a very light shade of brown / tan / earth oooops paint. Use this just to get the pink covered. It is cheap easy and quick. Then, depending on the area you want to portray you can easily cover it / mix it with lighter or darker, redder / browner colors.
    For example:
    I've no idea what color it is but for just getting something down it worked quite well.

    Note: For those who don't know me I have visual limitations including some color / shades of color issues. I just asked the guy for a light tan / brown whatever he might have "oooops". It is coverikng both blue and pink foam.
  15. Inkaneer

    Inkaneer TrainBoard Member

    Go to a Lowes or a Home Depot and ask for their paint rejects. These are usually paint gallons that some customer ordered but later decided it wasn't what they wanted. I picked up a gallon of a brown shade for $5.00. If nothing else it wil cover the foam color [my foam was blue] and be a neutral base for further scenicking. Another benefit is that you can buy tint to add to paint so the initial color really doesn't have to be the exact color you want.

    If your foam has groves in it from shaping tools you can also use texture paint to smooth over. Just keep it thin. Again it can be tinted. Texture paint rejects are not as easy to find as regular latex paint so you may have to bite the bullet on it. I imagine you could make your own texture paint with some plaster but I never tried it. Maybe others here have?
  16. Fotheringill

    Fotheringill Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    There is no real one color to do it in.

    I would go with a dull deeper green for areas that will be grass or ground cover over the paint and some sort of brown for the other areas where more dirt or sand will be visible. The cost difference will be minimal and you will be surprised at how cheap returned quarts at HD go for. For a few bucks for each can, you can cover a room as well as a layout. The key is to use two or three basic colors for the undercoat. Otherwise, you will be using more expensive ground cover (Woodland Scenic or whatever) to cover the brown or pink with green or olive or whatever in mulitple layers to cover the color you don't want to show.

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