Better Pavement


The intersection of District Blvd. and South Everett Avenue.


When I start a new layout I pick out a few modeling skills I’d like to improve upon.  Since pavement is such a dominant player in urban modeling, it was at the top of my list for the LAJ project.  While the painted roads in my tutorial were passable, I’ve become increasingly less satisfied with them.  Concrete and asphalt coloring is very complex, particularly when you add in the effects of weathering and the pounding they take.  To truly capture the look I was after I decided the photo wallpaper technique was my best bet.  The challenge is getting the images because you are limited to what you can get from overpasses and parking garages.  It takes some fiddling but if you play around with the camera tilt, the images from Google Streetview are usable once you correct for perspective. After more than a little photoshop work I was able to capture pavement images from Everett and Maywood Avenues (plus adjacent sidewalks) and make them work.  I used .060″ styrene as the base for the streets and then glued additional .060″ strips on for the sidewalks. The photos were then glued to the styrene with Super77.   A little good fortune came my way when I found that the inks in my HP 7612 printer can be coated with Dullcoat without issue.

For those that want to try this on your own I’m including a few of the base images below: