Cliff Face & Waterfall

This waterfall is meant to attach to a corner of a jungle table with a river running through it. So, I started out by measuring and cutting out insulation foam to fit the proper size of the river.
Because of the large amount of rock face I needed to cover, I decided to buy some Woodland Scenics rock molds and cast large chunks to expedite things. I used plaster of paris, but knowing that this will see a off of storage & transportation some PVA was added as I mixed it.

To make the top of the hill more organic I follow the tops of the rocks with a hot knife to give the land an undulating look. I also used some spackle to fill in the gaps between the cast pieces. Before the spackle was completely dry, I rolled a ball of aluminium foil on the joints to texturize it. This helped it blend in with the cast pieces better.
The next step was to paint the piece. I also embedded bits from a toy dino skeleton on the back side just for some whimsy.

Now for the water -- after some failed experiments, I went back to what I was used to using: silicone caulk. I placed a sheet of cling wrap down and spread out a sheet of caulk & used a stick to add the flowing texture. This caulk happened to apply white and dried to a translucent clear.
After it had dried for the most part, I peeled it off the sheet and repeated the process on the back side to bake sure the falls didn't have a smooth underside. 

Once the back side was dry, I cut the sheet into 2 strips that would fit the low spots of my cliff and attached them to the top with hot glue. I layed down more cling wrap under the falls for the next step.

To create the base of the falls, I poured a small puddle of clear resin under the silicone sheet.
I released the falls back into the puddle and poured more to spread out the length of the cliff face.

I also temporarily added a cardboard frame wrapped in cling to hold in the resin at the river's edge.
After the resin had cured, I dabbed on more caulk to give the water ripples & waves. While the caulk was still wet, I tore small pieces of Fiberfill (like what goes inside quilts) and stuck them to the base of the falls to look like mist.

This is what it looked like after the caulk dried.
You couldn't see much of the texture, so I mixed some gloss medium and white paint to dab onto the tips of the waves.

 After adding plants & flock to the top the piece was complete.

Thanks for looking!

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  1. Looks fantastic, great work.

  2. great work, does spackle always stick to foam?

  3. Amazing blog you have here..! Very inspiring stuff. Have to follow :)

  4. This is so great! If you're in Dallas, I'd love to photograph your stuff.