Welcome to the Strelets Forum.
Please feel free to discuss any aspect of 1/72 scale plastic figures, not simply Strelets.
If you have any questions about our products then we will answer them here.
As a surface for cutting on, I think just about everyone uses the self healing cutting mats available from any hobby shop or probably most stationary supply shops. As the name suggests, you can cut on these mats without leaving score marks. The material heals itself to preserve the flat surface:
Dropping glue or paint on the cutting mats will ruin the flat surface however so it's best to reserve them just for cutting.
For painting and gluing your desk blotter sounds like a great idea. I think I might get one of the office blotters with the pad of disposable blotting paper; when the surface is too messy just peel it off to reveal the fresh sheet below. I suppose you could slide a plastic sheet under the top page to make sure there's no seepage.
I use a rather large, heavy, wooden office desk purchased at a surplus office supply store. In the center is one of those self healing mats already mentioned. It's a big one, and I have a couple small ones on top of it for most of the actual work to preserve the surface of the large mat for big projects. My computer is also on the desk.
Paints and tools and such are in the drawers.
I have good lighting in the room but I also have a floor mounted OTT light when I need a little extra light.
Good luck on your project.
Mike Bunkermeister Creek
Bunker Talk blog
I use a drafting table for my hobby bench / work table. It has a steel frame, glass top 40 x 24 inches, and stool with foot rests, or I'll roll over my desk's office chair for comfort during all day projects. It has a glass top so paint and glue can be scraped off with a nylon scraper. I use old file folders to paint and cut on then throw away after each project.
I enjoyed architectural drafting in my school days (before computers) and then I used to do actual hand drafting of maps before CAD. So pretty much for light work such as this hobby, I'm most comfortable at a drafting table.
Another benefit, drafting tables today are inexpensive. I paid less than $100 for the set brand new delivered to my door. Plus it is light yet stable. I store supplies in Sterilite plastic drawers on either side, which are inexpensive also with more smaller plastic storage cases inside. Best of all, it's all modular and easy to move anywhere in my house when I want to rearrange our furnishings.
Below is a link to ebay for someone selling different styles. I'd be happy with anyone one of these styles. Also, no one should pay more than $85 - $110 for a set. These same sets are sold by multiple sellers and some of them are ridiculously high, so spend plenty of time shopping online for whatever kind of workstation you want - drafting table, architect table, office desk, 5-8 foot folding table, dining table ... they will all work depending on your needs.
Bon chance - GC
1. Self healing cutting mat
2. Technical lamp (preferably two) for which I recommend LED bulbs (somewhere from 13W to 15W and from 4200K to 6000K)
3. An MDF paint rack or a nail polish rack (you can also make your own, for example: https://youtu.be/VdlcgcNVrkE)