Let me get this out of the way right now I have no delusion of grandeur and I am full away that the above photo is the dream outcome not the expected outcome. My plan right now is to do a 2'x2' demo board which can then be used as a section of a 4'x4' table. Here are my concept sketches:
I am still not 100% sure about the interior cave section but I can make that call later on down the road. If I decide to scrap that idea I will rotate the cave wall section of the demo board to an outside edge. If the demo section goes well the next section will be the township and I will be using building from Burn In Designs' welcome to Rock Ridge which can be seen here: http://www.burnindesigns.net/2012/10/welcome-to-rock-ridge.html I have been in touch with Lathan the owner of Burn In Designs with some question and possibilities of modifications. More on the buildings as more info become available to me.
Ok with my plans bubbling in my head I decided to strike while the iron was hot and headed out to Home Depot.
MDF and foam
Tools and supplies
I had sample size latex paint matched to P3 bloodstone, moldy ochre, and 'jack bone. These color follow Rob's tutorial on his mine table above.
Hot wire cutter
When I got a free sec I stuck outside to play around with the wire cutter for the very first time. I cut a few pieces of foam to make the cave wall section of the demo board. I was pleasantly surprised with how easy smoothly this went for me as I have never played around with foam or a wire cutter and wasn't sure if there was a "trick" to it. After the sections were cut I glues them together with liquid nails and sandwiched them between boards of MDF with tools and weights stacked on top to allow the foam to dry appropriately (I hope). I plan to give it wall section at least 24 hours to dry before attempting to carve the face into the mesa styled rocks. Fingers crossed this next step will be as smooth.