"How to Build Large Scale Dioramas"

Discussion in 'Dioramas & Displays' started by JohnReid, Jul 7, 2007.

  1. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Here is a prime example of looking at something so long that you fail to really see it anymore.
    I was thinking of permanently fastening the Jenny down to the floor when I thought that I had better check her over one last time.Well look what I found! I had also forgotten the kingpost wiring and the drag wires not to mention the braces under the tail.Needless to say Jenny is now sitting back on the workbench!
  2. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Now I remember why I didn't add the drag wires,it was because they would interfere with the pilot group of figures and besides they would probably be one of the last things to be rigged.Same thing with the kingposts,only after the covering.I trimmed and tightened all the wires and made up the wooden tail braces that connect the tailpost to the horiz. stab.Looks like I will have her back in the hangar tomorrow.
  3. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  4. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    She is finally back in the hangar!I put the rafters on but have yet to hook up the lighting.The fighter pilot group will be next to go in permanently and then I can concentrate on the outside.
    The Camel research is still an ongoing process .Ken's pics are a great visual help
    when coming up with a list of modifications to be made.
  5. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  6. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    After looking carefully at the last two pics I think that I will probably make a major change in this diorama.The Jenny looks so nice taking center stage that I think that I will place the fighter pilot group aft of the wing near the motorcycle.This will help to downplay the "Memories of Flying School "idea and give all the figures a more even level of importance as,"Keepers of the Flame" 1918-1927.After all Jenny's participation in the war effort was just a part of her history here in Canada.It will require taking things apart again but what the hell I am used to that by now.Nothing is written in stone anyway until it is finally finished and that is the way I like it, as that way it keeps the whole thing interesting for me too.Imagine if I had an idea six years ago and felt compelled to see it through unchanged until the end.( boooring)
    Especially in the finishing stages, I find that taking lots of pics really helps you to focus on one area that may need changes or additions or in some cases complete removal.
    Little things ,like extending the rusty water spot on the rag where the rad is ,onto the hangar floor itself. (yet to be done) Or big things like moving a major figure group.Also the parts on the floor which I thought needed removal as being just too much, can now hardly be seen with the roof on.
    The camera also really helps to find little things that need attention, like the inside of the light electrical boxes in the rafters that require painting black.
    __________________
    It has been said that the difference between a "pilot" and an "aviator" is that a pilot is a technician,and an aviator is an artist in love with flight.
    JohnReid (Aviator)
  7. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    JohnReid Active Member

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    I think that I will go with the idea of Billy Bishop greeting his American fighter pilot friends at the door of the office.
    Now that I have changed and expanded the idea for the diorama,I feel that this is a better idea.The veteran connection is still there with the sign inside the hangar ,which justifies the pilot group being dressed in uniform for the occasion of Remembrance Day.There is still one RAF fighter pilot type in the hangar talking with the Al Capone group.He probably arrived earlier!
    For those who have only recently joined this thread Al Capone is the big guy with the fedora hat.
    I find that even the other idea of putting the pilot group directly behind the L/H wing of Jenny, still draws too much attention away from the airplane.
    While the story now is centered around the people of the era ,the airplane still ties it all together.
    __________________
    It has been said that the difference between a "pilot" and an "aviator" is that a pilot is a technician,and an aviator is an artist in love with flight.
    JohnReid (Aviator)
  9. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  10. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  11. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Never know what to expect do you?
    Well,this little arrangement should keep me busy for the winter!The horse,old tub and water well and pump should make a nice grouping.Then of course the Camel being towed by the Ford truck(#90) and finally an old airshow jalopy(#93) parked near the engine shop.#90and 93 are diecasts of approximately the same size as the plastic kit models that I have yet to build.
  12. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    JohnReid Active Member

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    Can't forget the racers!
    The story of the era would not be complete without some reference to the Air Racers.I chose to downplay this aspect a little by placing the posters under the lean to,next to the show car, on the side of the hangar ,as I don't want things to get too confusing.It also will serve as another item for the kids to find when playing the game of search the diorama for..........that I will suggest to the museum to make it a little more inter-active.I will also have four animals out and about for them to find.Kids seem to love to play these games!
  14. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  15. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Old roadster!
    This kit will be the basis of a
    old rusty air show car that I plan to build and put outside the engine shop replacing #93.It was replaced by the much more powerful car that is under the lean -to at the side of the hangar.
    My plan is to modify it to look more like a pre-WW1 car from around 1910.That would give me a good 15 years of wear and tear and lots of nice weathering possibilities.
    I plan to change it to L/H drive,eliminate all lights and the 5th wheel.I will throw a tarp over the cockpit area which will eliminate a lot of detailing.I will modify the fenders or have non at all.I plan to modify the body and move the gas tank up behind the driver for gravity feed.The wheel spokes will be wood.Putting in the engine is optional or I could leave it sitting on the ground ,rusting out.
    Should be fun!
  16. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    JohnReid Active Member

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    Over on another website there was a lot of excitement about museums that display what is basically dollhouse rooms and furniture,without the dolls.

    As you guys know 1/12 scale is considered doll house scale.A lot of people who are model makers let the word "dollhouse" turn them off to the wonderful things these guys and gals do both in scratchbuilding and in their use of kits.Some of the nicest modeling I have ever seen has been done by the dollhouse people.I make sure that I attend at least one show a year just to see what is going on.
    I think that I have mentioned before that it was a dollhouse show that really inspired me to blend what I saw there, with other types of modeling, to create something new(at least I had never seen it done before).When I saw the effects that could be created with indoor lighting ,it blew me away.
    I don't have the tools,patience or the skills required to do Louis the 14th furniture etc..but building and furnishing an old barn or hangar only requires basic carpentry skills,so that is when I decided to give it a go.A lot of 1/12 accessories and tools etc can easily be adapted to 1/16th scale.Especially tools that normally come in a variety of sizes in 1:1 scale.My hangar lighting is all dollhouse inspired with old brass Xmas bells for fixtures.In the office I used dollhouse overhead and table lamps to good advantage.
    Another advantage is that it doesn't have to be expensive ,I use standard pine wood from hardware stores along with tongue depressors and coffee stir sticks of various sizes for most of my lumber requirements.Sandpaper for roofing material ,salvaged plexiglass for windows etc,etc.... being creative and using your imagination to find stuff is half the fun!
  18. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Proud to be a dioramist!
    The next time that someone would have you believe that miniatures and dioramas cannot be ART have them check this out!Makes me proud to be part of this artform and something we could all aspire to!

    The Art Institute of Chicago: The Art Institute of Chicago: The Collection: Thorne Miniature Rooms

    Click on the picture for more pictures!
    Cheers! John.
  19. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    JohnReid Active Member

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    This is a pic of the parts of an old crate that I made for shipping the OX5 engine.I say shipping because I realized that I would have to make up my mind as to whether I would show nail holes or not.(No nail holes means the engine is being crated)
    I guess that on a nice day in November grating the engine outdoors is not beyond the realm of possibility.The pic is not a very good one but it does show a creative way of showing the sides and top of the crate.(the base is attached to the engine)These parts are leaning up against the engine shop outside wall and the grate is about to be nailed together.I played around awhile to get what I think is a nice arrangement but it still needs an address label or an upside down" this end up" sign or at least a few identifying numbers .The upside down "this end up" would be a nice Ken Hamilton touch,stolen from his book "How to Build Creative Car Dioramas".