Before i start biting off more than i can chew, i decided to start with the basics: tiles. I’ve seen a handful of different tutorials on reddit and Youtube, but the easiest (and cheapest) method was DM Scotty’s method from the DMs Craft.
The process altogether, counting cutting, gluing, designing, drying and painting, took about 8 hours, leaving me with about 12 gaming tiles i can use in almost any table top situation. Also, other than the cost of the glue gun (and paints, which i already had), the whole project only cost me about 5 bucks to craft. Again, like my last Dungeon Crafting post, i don’t have a play by play on how i did this, but i can try to describe what was done with each set of pictures.
Part One: From Foam
I started with foam board, which can be bought at $1 for a poster board size of this stuff. For these tiles i decided to go with a basic “stone cobble” look. To do this, all i did was carve in some grids and then started etching in the design with a ball point pen. Not shown, but i added a thick piece of cardboard to the bottom of each of these foam pieces just so they didn’t warp or bend (those next time i’ll double up on the cardboard).
Part Two: Melting Foam
After that i had to paint these. Like my last project, i wanted to spray paint these flat black so that the lighter details would pop out, but i know that spray paint generally melts Styrofoam. To get around this, i slathered the tiles with a coat of white glue.
Obviously though, i didn’t put on enough glue. Of the 16 tiles i made, after spray painting them i had to end up throwing out 4 of them do to the paint eating away the foam.
Part Three: A Few coats of paint
After the paint had dried, i mixed up some black, white, and blue for a base coat of paint, and applied it with a dish sponge fairly liberally (making sure not to cover up the seams between the stones.
Part Four: A Little Pop
After the base coat dried, i remixed the same colors, adding more white and a little more blue to the mix, and a bit more water as well. I essentially “dry brushed” the brighter blue-gray paint to the edges of the stones, and then did a light pass over each of the tiles individually.
Like i said earlier, the whole process is cheap and didn’t take all that long. Moving forward i think i will ditch the black spray paint and skip to just painting the entire thing by hand. While that process will take more time (probably adding an extra 2 hours, and causing me to buy more black acrylic paint), i won’t have to worry about warping or melting as much.
All in all, this is a fun, cheap, and easy process to accomplish in a single afternoon. Get yourself a glue gun, head to the dollar store, and give it a shot!