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I am currently constructing the Revenge  and I would like to display the ship at anchor in calm seas as she may have been seen of the coast of Spain in the Sea of Cadiz.  Modelling water will be a first for me.  I have the book "Waterline Dioramas" and the author mentions using textured Plexiglas that would simulate the small swells seen in calm seas.  My idea is use a template to to cut the Plexiglas at the waterline - the ship will then sit in the cutout after the Plexiglas is painted.  Photo below shows this using a cardboard template (taken from my build log).




Here are some options for textured Plexiglas that I've found on the web:




I think this may be the easiest way to simulate water and should look pretty good once painted (I hope).  

Any thoughts or advice?







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At the very beginning I also thought that these structured acrylic glasses might be a good idea, but at least the ones I found at the time didn't quite look like waves, but rather than water droplets on a glass pane, so I gave up that idea.


Unless the sea is dead-calm, it is probably better moulded or carved. There would be swell/waves of different heights and lengths. In most cases the sea would be translucent at best and you can see only through a top layer of a few centimeters, when you look sort from above. So one doesn't really need to have something that is completely translucent. Hence, the sea can be moulded say from plaster of Paris or carved from wood or hard foam and then covered with 'gesso' (essentially Plaster of Paris). The changing colours of the sea then are painted on. Finally one gives it a cover of glossy acrylic varnish. Splashes, wave crests etc. can be modelled using acrylic gel medium. As the sea is never really that glossy, except again in a dead calm, I stipple on with a bristle brush gel medium to simulate the wind effect on the water surface. I have described the process in more detail on my Web-site: https://www.maritima-et-mechanika.org/maritime/tips/makingwaves.html


Here one example for a tropical lagoon using an acrylic sheet as the basis:





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