With the theater built and spray coated, I found myself unable to work on it for a few weeks. As I write this, I am frantically painting this in an effort to get it done by Christmas, and have had several painting sessions with the main body and details to that end.
The picture above is the first painting session, and shows a selection of the craft paints I am using. I remained surprised at just how much paint the HDF sucked up, as I had to paint some sections two or three times to get an even coat. On the "stone" work I used this to my advantage, as the mottled look of partly absorbed paint gives a good look I think.
In this picture, I am using tissue paper and black paint to make a tar paper roof. Common in this area, tar paper (or felt) is rolled out on flat roofs, and sealed with tar on the edges, and sometimes has a gravel overlay. Given our climate, the blackish paper turns light gray very quickly, and older roofs are nearly white. Anyway, this technique is one I read about in model train forums, and it is both very quick and very cheap. I can go into more detail if anyone is interested once this is all done.
Int he above picture, I have painted the second segment of the building with its first coat. The rear of the building is still separate to allow me to work on the interior. I remain surprised (somehow) at how much paint gets absorbed by the HDF, with many segments taking more than one coat to establish color, even over the spray paint. .