So I've been trying to find ways to save myself time (since I have little to devote to crafting) And space (since my house is tiny. Literally 4 small rooms total).
To this end, I thought to myself recently, "wouldn't it be nice if I didnt have to agonize over measurement precision as much? Dont they have half-inch wide dowels that i can use to easy measure my walls (the most tedious part of crafting imho)?"
So I decided to sacrifice some time today to get a dowel that is the required width of my prefered wall. In the process i also saw a splendid foot wide/2 foot long board made of redwood (dense as heck wood that can take a beating from razor cutting) that i can use as a lap board. Attach a wooden ruler to it and i have easy measuring for most projects.
So now I can shave off some of the tedious measuring bits when i need to cut out more walls (no more measuring half inch marks and drawing lines between points, hoping I measured precisely enough), and the lap board will save my small kitchen from becoming a disorganized work station and make measuring room sizes a bit easier with the tethered ruler.
Yay convenience. A bit costly to make crafting easier, but the ability to craft quicker is priceless...
Anybody else have simple tips for making the craft process easier?
I agree with theDMG. I find it's quicker to form a sort of assembly line for my things. However, this may not be possible for all types of dungeons. It'd probably be tough to mass produce cavernous walls and floors.
Multitask: I rip up sponges, break apart foam, cut walls, cut dowels, cut little bricks, etc. all while watching TV. If you have semi-idle time, you can use it for prep work.
Mise en place: Get everything you need to craft the thing you're working on in place and in the order you are going to use it. Just like the mass assembly suggestions above, put the things in place and burn through the build.
paint-by-color: Something I do is that when I need a color, any color, I use it on every tile that I think I am going to need it on. This one might be a little obvious, but if not, it can help. I don't paint one object or tile at a time, from start to finish, but I paint all of my blacks, then grays, then blues, etc. across all objects.
Work on more than one project at a time: I have a few aqueduct tile, river tiles, road tiles, treasure piles, and rock piles all in progress. While one set is drying, another set can get attention. Again, this might be obvious, but if you're waiting or focused on just one project, precious crafting time can be lost to idle time. It can take longer for a single piece to be ready, but overall, everything should be done in less time.
I take the Works In Process approach, to painting, and crafting, both. Learned it from an old Forge Smith(?) Dragon Magazine article from the archive (published before my RPG'ing debut). Anyway, it means that you work on what you want/feel like, when you have crafting time; discipline is still required, or you will never actually finish any project, drifting continuously, from one start-up, to another. It does, however, relieve much of the stress of working on a project, as you are not locked into only working on one thing, until it is completed.
I also work assembly-line style, wherever possible. When I put paint on my palette, I paint as much with it, as possible, until it is gone, starting with similar objects (all figures are grouped according to pose, so I can perform the same brush-stroke on each, in a row, until I am done with that group of poses, and that color of paint -- I paint armies, groups of 10-100+ figures, usually limited to 4-8 poses only).
For terrain pieces, I try to make several similar pieces, to maximize efficiency in painting, and crafting. It is not always possible, but it helps push stuff into the "finished" column, on my long, laundry list of projects. Cheers!
The right tool for the right job. Make or plan on making a lot of tiles? I went out and found a decent paper cutter. Similar to the big ones used in school, libraries, etc. It's got a gridded surface and the overall area is 6"X9". Saves me a lot of time and hand fatigue when cutting tiles, I can slice up walls and edging by the score, basic door shapes, etc.
Ryvek: Did you see ANYTHING you could hit with an arrow to cause a distraction?
Omariss: Yes. Children.
erho: I will once again rise above Lurker status if I ever get back to painting, Real life work transitions... Adulting
Jan 31, 2020 16:23:29 GMT
factoriatabletop: sgtslag...oh man! you are right about it...
Mar 3, 2020 10:13:15 GMT
Draklith: Hey everyone just a quick stop by to see if anyone is still here, hope everyone is doing ok
May 26, 2020 18:27:20 GMT
sgtslag: This forum seems to be slowing down. I hope everyone is still crafting, safely! I will be here until they turn off the power... Cheers!
May 27, 2020 13:46:43 GMT
factoriatabletop: maybe we should try to make a contest here, between us
Jun 2, 2020 8:40:08 GMT
factoriatabletop: no prizes, just proud....dont know, anyone else?
Jun 2, 2020 8:40:40 GMT
sgtslag: Still unpacking after moving in October... Too much stuff, crafting materials are mostly still in boxes. Weekends are busy with life, so little progress made. Getting the urge to push through, though, soon. I have several projects waiting...
Jun 2, 2020 20:14:39 GMT
erho: Yeah I'm down for a painting contect
Jun 8, 2020 14:28:59 GMT
sgtslag: Started working on making hills, which match my Tee-Time carpet I use for my "grass mat," on my gaming table, for big battles. Got two long chunks of open-cell foam, from a friend. Used my Proxxon Hot Wire Cutter to make terrain hills out of them.
Jul 26, 2020 20:12:40 GMT
sgtslag: Came up with around 80 hills. Covering them with the same carpet, from scraps. They will match the tabletop, perfectly. Contact Cement, is my friend. Will post on it, when I get the pictures uploaded. Some prototypes done, as proof-of-concept...
Jul 26, 2020 20:14:06 GMT
randywest: does anyone know more manufacturers for 1/72 fantasy minis besides Dark Alliance, Caesar and Elhiem?
Sept 14, 2020 14:16:19 GMT
sgtslag: 50 Hills completed, 24 left to cover the sides on. Hoping to finish this project within the week. Then I'll post a build description. For war gaming, but it can cross over to RPG sessions... They match the ground 'cloth', perfectly.
Sept 19, 2020 19:03:09 GMT
sgtslag: Sorry, randywest, the listed makers are the only ones I know.
Sept 19, 2020 19:03:34 GMT
sgtslag: Ran out of Hot Glue, with only five hills left to add a skirt to the sides of. Wal-Mart closes at 8:00 PM, thanks to COVID. GRRRrrr! Another 30 minutes of work, and I would have been done: ~77 hills, modular, perfectly matching my table's ground cloth!
Sept 23, 2020 2:50:39 GMT
sgtslag: Will post a write-up soon, or after next week's vacation. Cheers!
Sept 23, 2020 2:51:57 GMT
sgtslag: Hoping to acquire a Chop Saw within the next two weeks. Then I will cut up MDF into triangles, to form the skeleton of my d20 fantasy world globe... Posting will follow, with how-to guide. Cheers!
May 11, 2021 22:57:40 GMT
erho: I have a confession: I havnt painted a thing in months because I got a new guitar(#8!) but now that May "Megadeth month" is over I have a repaired airbrush and a early 90's Ral Partha Amethyst dragon on the table... pics to come soon!
Jun 11, 2021 17:49:58 GMT
margaret: too bad you can't post your music here =). Hadn't seen that dragon - looks like it came out when all my cash was going to raising kids. Looking forward to seeing your paint choices!
Jun 12, 2021 2:41:42 GMT