Making realistic tarpaulins from tissue. The inspiration for this particular post came from a magazine article by Brian Balkwell and published in Model Military International - November 2006. Brian suggested using standard tissues coated with water based silicone sealant to make realistic model tarps in 1:35th scale. I tried this using acrylic medium (used by artists to extend acrylic paints) but found that the tissue paper disintegrated. Back to the drawing board.....
I then stumbled upon some computer screen cleaning cloths. The small tissues are about the same size as a standard tissue but made from a thicker paper/tissue. I painted each side of the cloth with the acrylic medium and found that it was much better and able to be manipulated (see the last image).
When I was happy with the effect, I drybrushed the surface with lighter green acrylic paint and even added a couple of washes to highlight the folds (both effects were discussed in the original MMI article). For additional detailing I have added a plastic spanner from the Italeri Field Workshop Set and eyelets made by pressing a small hole in the tarpaulin and then using a silver pencil to model the metal ring.
I am sure that I will be using similar techniques to make more tarpaulins on future projects.